Chess

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Indy Lifestyle Online
With the sudden rise of chess databases, where every grandmaster wields a laptop computer with half a million games on its hard disk, it has become increasingly difficult to win games through theoretical erudition. Now everyone knows everything.

In this climate, an increasing number of players are going back to the games of the pre-database era, resuscitating old ideas and surprising the supposedly best-prepared of opponents with opening variations unnecessarily abandoned 50 years ago.

Nigel Short, on his rise to a crack at the world championship in the early 1990s, scored a string of wins with 5.Qe2 in the Ruy Lopez - abandoned as innocuous in the 1950s - and the even older Four Knights Game, ditched as drawish in the 1930s.

As Short showed, there are still new ideas to be found in the oldest of openings. And even if you can't find anything new, you can be fairly certain that your young opponents, at anything below the highest levels, will have forgotten - or never knew - the old theory.

So here's a game to inspire more delvings in ancient history.

White: JR Capablanca

Black: H Steiner

1 e4 e5 14 f4! Rg8

2 Nf3 Nc6 15 Qh5+ Kg7

3 Nc3 Nf6 16 fxe5 dxe5

4 Bb5 Bb4 17 Rxf6! Kxf6

5 0-0 0-0 18 Rf1+ Nf5

6 d3 d6 19 Nxf5!! exf5

7 Bg5 Bxc3 20 Rxf5+ Ke7

8 bxc3 Ne7 21 Qf7+ Kd6

9 Nh4 c6 22 Rf6+ Kc5

10 Bc4 Be6 23 Qxb7! Qb6

11 Bxf6 gxf6 24 Rxc6!Qxc6

12 Bxe6 fxe6 25 Qb4 mate!

13 Qg4+ Kf7

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