ETCETERA / Chess: THE International Master Andrew Martin shows that 19th-century openings can still claim grandmaster scalps

White: Andrew Martin

Black: Michael Adams

Eastman Cup Final, London 1992.

1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. f4]? exf4 4. d4]?

An all-or-nothing opening. Wilhelm Steinitz, the first world champion, loved this gambit.

4 . . . Qh4+ 5. Ke2 b6?

5 . . . d6 and 5 . . . d5 are the critical moves.

6. Nb5] Ba6

Exchanging queens with 6 . . . Qh5+ 7. Ke1 Qxd1+ 8. Kxd1 makes no sense. White regains the pawn with a fine game.

7. a4 0-0-0

We were both unaware of the dangerous alternative 7 . . . Qe7]

8. Nf3 Qe7 9. Kf2]

Attending to the threat of Qxe4+ and setting up 10. Nxa7+.

9 . . . Bb7 10. Bxf4 Qxe4 11. Qd2 Nf6 12. Bd3 Qh5 13. Rhe1]

Capturing on c7 was always in my mind, but I did not want to permit a glimmer of counterplay. The opening has gone beautifully; why spoil it?

13 . . . d6 (diagram) 14. a5

This is based on the neat variation 14 . . . Nxa5 15. Rxa5] bxa5 16. Qxa5 Rd7 17. c4 Qh5 18. Re8+] Nxe8 19. Nxa7+ Kb8 20. Qxh5 Kxa7 21. Qa5+ Kb8 22. d5] and Nd4-c6 cannot be stopped. I was discomfited when some Hampshire juniors at a training session found 14. Bg5] cutting the queen's escape and winning simply: 14 . . . Ng4+ (or 14 . . . Na5 15. b4 Nc4 16. Qc3) 15. Kg3 f6 16. c4 Qf7 17. Kxg4 fxg5 18. Nxg5 Qf6 19. Re6.

14 . . . Qh5 15. axb6 axb6 16. c4 Be7?

This passive move told me that Michael Adams was disgusted with his position. The only hope was 16 . . . g5 17. Bxg5 Bg7.

17. Kg1 Rhe8 18. d5 Ne5 19. Nfd4]

The threat is 20. Na7+ Kb8 21. Bxe5 and 22. Ndc6+.

19 . . . Kb8 20. Be2

My opponent pointed out that 20. Na7 would have been quicker.

20 . . . Nxc4

Now 21. Bxc4 Nxd5 gives Black some hope of resistance, but White has better.

21. Bxh5 Nxd2 22. Bxf7 Nde4 23. Bxe8 Rxe8 24. Nc6+ Kc8 25. Rac1 Bf8 26. Nb4 Nc5 27. Rxe8+ Nxe8 28. Bg5]

White threatens Rf1, which is also the reply to h6.

28 . . . Nf6 29. Bxf6 gxf6 30. Re1 Kd7 31. Nd4 Na4 32. Nbc6 Nxb2 33. Nb8+]

This forces mate or decisive material gain.

33 . . . Kd8 34. Ne6+ Kc8 35. Nc6 Bh6 36. Nc5] dxc5 37. Re8+ resigns.

It is mate next move. One up for Steinitz.

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