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  Emanuel Lasker - Frank J. Marshall;  
  Cambridge Springs, PA/USA; 1904.  

(March 23, 2005)  As you may know, I have been very interested in the tournament,  Cambridge Springs, 1904;  for some time now. 

I have wanted to write a book on this tournament  ...  for a number of years now.  
(I first started on the idea back in the 1980's, but I never finished it. I have also analyzed these games numerous times - over the years.) 

Some while back - I 'met' over the Internet, a person who was not only a fine human being, but also an excellent {chess} historian. 

Steve (Etzel) challenged me to annotate this game. (For one of my websites.) I thought - at first - (this time around); that it would be a simple job, I could crank it out in a day or so. I did some analysis and sent it off to Steve. Steve reviewed it, then it turned out - a game that I thought was NOT annotated in any reference book - turned out to be in a number of different chess books and various other sources. (See the bibliography at the end of the game.)  

A game that I thought would be very simple  - -  well  ...  I now have been working on it, on an admittedly somewhat inconsistent basis, for a period of over two years now. To make a long story short, I felt I had done all the meaningful analysis that I could, and it was time to start creating the web page. 

This is mostly a text-based game ... with one or two diagrams. You will definitely want a chess board. 

 Click  HERE  to see an explanation of some of the symbols that I use when annotating a chess game.   

 Click  HERE  to see this game in java-script replay format.   (Not one of my pages! Please don't write me about the content.)  

  Em. Lasker (2767) - F.J. Marshall (2534)  
  Super-Master's Tournament  
  Cambridge Springs, PA; (Round # 5) USA / 02,05,1904.  

  [A.J. Goldsby I]  

Game Number Forty (# 40) 


This is a very interesting game of chess, however the moves on the board are outweighed by other factors:   

# 1.)  Emanuel Lasker was the reigning World Champion at the time of this particular contest. 
            (Contest - the tournament: Cambridge Springs, PA; 1904.)  

# 2.)  Emanuel Lasker was one of the best tournament players who ever lived. 

         He almost always managed to win first place in the tournaments in which he competed, 
         especially prior to this particular event.    

# 3.)  By MY calculations, Lasker was the higher-rated player by almost three hundred rating points, 
         (if not even more). Certainly the smart money is on Lasker here. 

# 4.)  Up until this point, F. Marshall was almost a nobody in the sphere of things ... but he would go    
         on to win this event, undefeated. (Eleven {!!} wins, only four draws, and NO losses.) After this    
         tournament was over, Frank J. Marshall assumed his rightful place among the world's best players. 


The ratings come directly from the Chess-Metrics website. Marshall was clearly the under-dog here. 

 1.e4 c5;  {Diagram?}   
The Sicilian was not unheard of in those days, however, it was not nearly as common as it is today.  

The basic ideas were not laid out in any detail either - players often would play or interpret this opening   
in a much different way than a modern players would. 

     [ Another possibility would be:  
        1...e62.d4 d5 3.Nc3 c5!?4.exd5 exd55.Bb5+ Nc6{D?}   
         which is similar to the game. ]   


 2.Nf3 e6;  3.Nc3 d5!?;   
This idea of playing an early advance of the QP in the Sicilian was an early favorite of Marshall.   
{Cf. Marshall's last-round game.} (Siegbert Tarrasch also would use this idea on occasion.)   

While still played today, the line is viewed today - by modern theory - as being highly suspect.   

     [ Instead after the following moves for both parties from this position:   
       (>/=)  3...Nc64.d4! cxd45.Nxd4, "+/="   (space, piece play)  {D?}    
       we reach a normal position for the (open) Sicilian Defense.   

       [See any good opening book for more information here.]  ]   


Perhaps the most direct here. 

     [ After the moves:   4.Bb5+ Nc65.d4, "+/="  {Diagram?}   
        we have a position that is similar to the way the game was actually played. ]  


 4...exd5;  5.Bb5+ Nc6;  6.0-0!?,  (Probably - '!')   
I always applaud rapid development and also getting the King to a safe place ... as quickly as possible.   

     [ However, the move of:  6.d4!?,  "+/="   was a viable option here for White. ]  


 6...Nf6;  7.d4,  ('!')     
Max Euwe comments that we are now in a fairly well-known line of the French Defense ...   
and that we have arrived here simply by the use of a slightly irregular move order. 

     [ Also possible here was:  7.Re1+!?, with a slight edge  ("+/=")  to White. ]  


 7...Be7!?;  (hmmm)   {See the diagram given ... just below here.}   
This idea by Marshall ... which involves quick castling ... also {usually} will involve a pawn sack as well by Black. 



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Many books do not comment here, but Black almost certainly had a way of playing more accurately    
than the way the game actually went.  

     [DEFINITE  improvement would have to be:   
       (>/=)  7...a6!8.Re1+!? Be6 9.Bf1!? h6!;  "<=>"  {Diagram?}   
        when Black has good play from this position.   

        To truly understand this type of position, one would have to know modern theory,   
        and also have studied the main lines of the {pure} Tarrasch Defense.   
        (See the games of the Vassily Smyslov vs. Garry Kasparov ... when these two faced    
         each other in a clash of youth vs. experience. 
         --->  In the FIDE Candidates Match, {Final?}; 1984.)   

       A good book to study would be:   
       "Winning Pawn Structures,"  by  GM A. Baburin.  (1998)  
         This book is actually a thorough treatise that deals with all isolated-QP Pawn structures. 
         (Highly recommended!) ]   

  ***       ***       ***  


 8.dxc5 0-0;   
Euwe (rightly) remarks here that: "Marshall was a born gambit player."   

Reinfeld remarks that: "as White's extra Pawn is doubled and will not count until the ending is reached,   
Black is justified, considering his development, in permitting this material advantage." 

Personally, with the advances of computers and modern theory, I must conclude that Black's Pawn 
sacrifice is unsound and that the whole line is suspect. But I must emphasize that this is a conclusion   
that was made after the fact  ...  over 100 years after this game was actually played!! At the time this 
contest was played ... Black's ideas were both reasonable and proved sufficient for the occasion.   


 9.Bg5 Be6!?;   
Marshall prefers to keep his center Pawn here - in this position. 

     [ Also possible was: 9...Bxc5!? ]  


Now White keeps the Pawn ... but it is a doubled-QBP.   
 10.Bxc6 bxc6;  11.b4,   
"Lasker has accepted the challenge." - GM Max Euwe 

     [ Or   </=  11.Re1!? Bxc5; ("=")   when Black has no real problems. ]  


 11...h6!?;  12.Bxf6!?,  (hmmm)     
This cannot be correct ... White willingly gives up his Bishop.  
[ "Certainly not the best," (here). - {former} World Champion ... GM Max Euwe. ]   

 '?' - GM Max Euwe 
(This is a little too harsh ... in my own personal estimation. 
 Perhaps a dubious appellation {?!} would have been sufficient here.) 

     [ >/= 12.Bf4!, "+/="  (Maybe - '') ]  


Now Black must play very actively, to do anything else from this position, would be to invite a disaster. 
 12...Bxf6;  13.Qd2,    
A very timid-looking move from Lasker, who normally plays much more dynamic chess.   

Euwe opines that Lasker might have originally thought that he could play the more active Nd4 here,  
but then realized that  ...a7-a5!;  gave Marshall a great deal of play.   

     [ </=  13.Nd4!? a5!14.Nxc6? Qc7;  "=/+" ]   


 13...a5;  14.a3[] Qb8;    
"Black's counter-attack is in full swing in this position."  - GM Max Euwe   


 15.Rab1 axb4;  ('!')   
The open file will give Black a little more play than he currently enjoys. 

     [ Or  15...Bg4!?16.Nd4,  "+/="   with a small edge for White. ]   


White should think about playing the move of Ne2 on move 17.   
 16.axb4 Ra3;  17.Nd4!? Qe5;  18.Nce2 Bg4!?; ('!')    
I guess the simple option of just retreating to the d7-square did not particularly thrill Marshall. 


 19.f3 Bd7;  20.c3!? Re8!?;  {See the diagram given ... just below here.}    
Is Frank Marshall trying to win from this position? 



mar_lvsm-cs04_pos2.gif, 09 KB



If so, he is taking a great risk. 


     [ The rather obvious move of:  >/=  20...Rfa8!;  "~"  {Diagram?}   
        looks to be a simple and a logical improvement for Black here.   
        (Fred Reinfeld - in the official book of the tournament - comments on this as well.) ]  


Now White correctly disputes Black's control of the a-file ... it is the only way that Lasker can    
make any true progress from the current position. 
 21.Ra1 Rea8;  22.Rxa3 Rxa3;  23.Re1!? Qc7!?;  (Maybe - '!')   
A reasonable move here ...   

     [ Also playable was:  23...Bh4{Diagram?}   
        Black has counterplay, but White is still clearly on top. ("+/=") ]   


The move f2-f4 looks pretty good for White, but for some reason, the champ begins to back-pedal here.   
 24.Nc2!?,  (hmmm)    
"White has succeeded in holding his own. Now he tries for more."  - GM Max Euwe    

     [ Another idea was:  24.Qe3, "+/="  {D?}  when White enjoys a small edge. ]    


 24...Ra2;  25.Ra1 Qa7!?;   
Activating the Queen.   

     [ Also possible was:  (>/=)  25...Rxa1+26.Nxa1 Qe5;  "~"   when Black has excellent play. ]  


 26.Qc1 Bf5!;   
"Black keeps on pressing."  - GM Max Euwe   


 27.Rxa2 Qxa2;  {See the diagram given ... just below here.}     
Black's two Bishops  ...  and very active Queen gives him very good play in this position.   



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The only question is how does Lasker manage to organize his position? 

 28.Ncd4 Bd3!?;  (Maybe - '?!')   
Understandably - given Marshall's aggressive style - the second party chooses belligerent counterplay. 

      [ Maybe a little more circumspect was the move:  (>/=) 28...Bd7; ('!')  {Diagram?}   
         when White is only a little better. ("+/=")  ]   


 29.Qe3!?,  (hmmm)   
According to the computer, this move is dubious. 
(White should play actively here to maintain an advantage.)   

     [ Fritz says it is better to play:  
       >/=  29.Nf4 Bxd4+30.cxd4 Bb531.h4,  ''   {Diagram?}    
       with a clear advantage for White. (But I am not sure if the box    
       completely understands the amount of play Black can generate    
       from this position. I tinkered with it for over 30 minutes ...   
       but never found an easy or a clear winning continuation for White 
       from here.) ]   


 29...Bxd4!?;  (Really - '?!')    
Black decides to rid himself of one of the Knights ... but this is not a very good idea. 
The general rule of thumb is that the defender will never willingly exchange pieces,   
(although there are exceptions - of course! - to this idea).   

     [ Hiarcs (9.0) finds the following line for Black here:   
       >/=  29...Bc4!30.Nc1!? Qa3!;  "<=>"  {Diagram?}     
       when finding the clear route to the win would be exceedingly   
       difficult for White. (In this line, I prefer the move, 30.h3. "+/="   
       White has an advantage ... albeit an extremely small one.) ]   


 30.Nxd4,  {Box.}    
This is absolutely forced.   

     [ Not  </=  30.cxd4??,  as after  30...Qxe2;  White should resign. ("+/-") ]   


GM Pal Benko, (in his monthly column) - in the December, 2004; issue of the magazine, 'Chess Life'  ...  
{pages # 46-47};  also analyzes this fantastic game, (picking up the action in this contest ... at this point). 

 *** *** *** *** *** ***    *** *** *** *** *** ***    *** *** *** *** *** ***    *** *** *** *** *** ***   

<< Marshall made a doubtful Pawn sac in the opening. (Emanuel) Lasker characterized him as "a player who 
      abhors (the) lack of initiative more than anything else." Now he has to save an endgame where, with the    
      Queens (still) on the board, perpetual check may be a possibility. >>   
      - GM Pal Benko / 'Endgame Lab.'   (The) December, (2004); issue of 'Chess Life.'    


 30...Qa1+;  31.Kf2 Qb2+;  ('!')     
Was Marshall now expecting Lasker to simply accept a repetition of the position? 
 If so, he is in for a very rude awakening!!   

     [ Not  </=  31...Qxc3?32.Kg3!,  ('')   when White is probably winning. ]   


 32.Kg3!!,  ('')   {See the diagram given ... just below here.}    
Perhaps this is the move that F.J. Marshall had overlooked ... Lasker's King willingly goes for a stroll here,    
(the strong King, an idea that was borrowed from Lasker's predecessor - Wilhelm Steinitz).    



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White is clearly better in this position. 

Strangely ... although this move is clearly indicated by something like five different programs ...   
Max Euwe questions this move and awards it the "dubious" sign!  ('?!' - GM Max Euwe)   
{I also discovered that both Marco and S. Tarrasch later criticized this move in print as well.}   

After analyzing this game many times, I believe that Kg3 is best. It is a very bold winning    
  attempt - the alternative was to simply accept the draw by the repetition of the position.   


     [ The alternative is:   
        </=  32.Kg1!? Qa1+33.Kf2 Qb2+34.Kg1 Qa1+;  ("=")  Draw ]   


Black's next move is forced ... in order to get any measure of play. 

However, this did not prevent a former World Champion (Euwe) from awarding this move 
an exclamation mark.  (I.e., '32...Bf1!' - GM Max Euwe.)   
 32...Bf1; '[]'  ('!')    
(this move) "Gains the pawn back, but the danger is not yet over - because White also puts    
 his King into action." - GM Pal Benko   

     [ Black cannot allow:    
        </=  32...Qxc3?(Maybe - '??')   {Diagram?}   
        as after the simple move  -  33.Nxc6,  ("+/-")  {D?}      
        all the programs show that this is a very simple win   
        for White.  (White's two, connected-passers are    
        free to run up the board.)   

      **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **      

           ( One example of how easy it is to win this position would be:   
              33.Nxc6 Qc2{Diagram?}   
              I am not sure how Black could logically improve his play here.  

                   ( The box - instead - gives:     
                      >/=  33...d4; ('!')  34.Nxd4! Qxb4 35.Qxd3 Qxc5    
                      36.Nf5 Qe5+37.Kh3, "+/-"  {Diagram?}      
                      when White is simply a whole piece ahead.     
                      (This is a very UN-natural and unpleasant prospect for     
                       any human player.) )     

             34.Qe8+ Kh735.Ne7 h5 36.Qxf7 Qd2{Diag?}   
             Once again - Black has very few viable options here.   

                   ( Or Black could try:   
                      </=  36...Bg6!?;  37.Nxg6 Qxg6+;  38.Qxg6+ Kxg6;    
                      39.c6 d4;  40.c7 d3;  41.c8Q d2;  42.Qc2+,  ("+/-")     
                      with an easy win for White. )    

             37.c6! Qg5+38.Kh3! Kh6 39.Qe6+ g640.Qf7 Qe541.c7!,  ("+/-")  {D?}  
             It is hard to see how Black can prevent the White Pawn from being promoted. )  ]  


 33.Kf4!,  (Maybe - '!!')   
"A startling move, demonstrating the Champion's deep insight. It came within an ace of winning."   
  - Fred Reinfeld   

     [ Or  33.Qf2!? Qxc334.Nxc6,  "+/="  {Diagram?}  
        and White still stands a little better - in this position. ]  


Black now threatens a mate ... (...Qg5#);  on his very next move!   


 34.Ke5!,  (Definitely best.)   {See the diagram - just below here.}    
Euwe awards this move a whole exclamation point here ... and I fully concur with his judgment ...  
... at least about this move. 



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"Have you ever seen such a King?"  - GM (& former champ) Max Euwe  

     [ After the moves:  34.Qe8+!? Kh7;  "~"  {Diag?}  
        it is hard to decide how to proceed if you are playing the   
        White side of the board in this position. ("+/=") ]   


Now Black threatens ...Qf6#; on his next turn. (But this is easily prevented.)   

     [ Several of my students have e-mailed me to pose the question:   
       "Why not capture White's h-Pawn here?"   

        </=  34...Qxh2+?!('?')  35.f4 Qh4 36.Kd6! Qd8+;  
        37.Kxc6 Qc8+38.Kxd5('' maybe "-/+")  {Diagram?}   
        The first player's phalanx of Q-side Pawns should march in and decide   
        the game in White's favor here, numerous computer tests confirm this.   


             ( One example would be:  38.Kxd5 Qd8+!?;  39.Ke4 Qa8+;      
                40.c6! Bg2+;  41.Kd3 Bxc6;  42.b5! Bb7;  43.Qe5 Bg2;      
                44.Qc7 Kf8!?;  45.Qd6+ Ke8;  46.c4 h5!?;  47.Qe5+ Kd8; (!?)     
                Hoping the King can help stop all of White's passed pawns here.     

                48.c5 Qa3+;  49.Ke2 Qa2+;  50.Ke3! Qa3+!?;  51.Kf2 Qa2+;     
                52.Kg1! g6;  53.b6,  ("+/-")  {Diagram?}      
                (and) White's advantage is now both obvious and overwhelming here. )  ]   


 35.Qf4 Bd3;  (hmmm)    
Probably the only good move for Black in this position. 

"It is obvious that Black could not let the White King get into d6, and Qf5 also had to be defended."   
  - GM Pal Benko  

     [ If   </=  35...Bh3?!;  then  36.Qh4!,  ''   when White is much better. ]   


 36.b5?!,   (Maybe - '?')   
This move was literally praised by some ... and condemned by others.   
("As Lasker suggested, the move of Q-R4 was preferable," here. - Fred Reinfeld)   

Apparently Benko feels that this try is inferior and I agree. 
("This break means that giving up the dominant d4-N was not at all urgent. White could have increased    
   his advantage with 36.Qh4-e7, combined with the threat of the f4-f5 advance." - GM Pal Benko)   

     (But  ...  '!' - GM Max Euwe!!!)     (And  ...  '?!' - GM Pal Benko.)   

     [ MUCH  better would have been the following continuation:   
        >/=  36.Qh4! Ba6!?37.Qe7!,  ''   {Diagram?}   
        when White is clearly on top ... and very close to winning, ("+/-"). ]   


{now} Marshall does not hesitate to enter the "Queen-and-Pawn" ending. 
 36...Bxb5;  ('!')    
This must be the correct course for Frank J. Marshall to take in the current position.  

     [ But not:  </=  36...f5?37.bxc6!{Diagram?}   
       and White is clearly winning.  "+/-"   
      (If the BQ checks on f6, then simply KxP/d5.) ]   


 37.Nxb5 cxb5;  38.Kd4,  ('!')    
White avoids a trap set by Marshall.  

"An unforseeable Queen ending has come up. White's trump card is the c-pawn thrust. 38.Kxd5 would   
  be a mistake because of  38...Qe6+;  39.Kd4, Qc4+."  - GM Pal Benko  

     [ Lasker should definitely not fall for the following little trick:   
       </=  38.Kxd5?? Qe6+39.Kd4 Qc4+40.Ke3 Qxc3+41.Ke2 Qxc5;  "-/+"  
        when Black is winning. ]   


 38...Qc2;  (Maybe - '!')   
"Black must remain active. After a move like 38...Q-B3; he would get into difficulties: 
 39.Q-N8ch, K-R2;  40.Q-N6, etc."  - GM Max Euwe   

 39.c6?,  (ugh)   
An error ... but one that has the look and feel of a hasty decision that was made in time pressure.   
{Several accounts relate that Emanuel Lasker battled the clock in this event, he was probably a   
  little rusty. He had not played serious tournament chess for at least a couple of years, and I think   
  that this was a problem for him in the early rounds of this event.}   

One of the basic ideas of the Q+P ending is to keep your Queen as active as possible. And while    
this is good advice, it is sometimes easier said than done. (This - faulty - move also causes a big change    
in Fritz's evaluation of the position ... it goes from '' to "equal" almost instantaneously.)   

(This) "looks very good for White, but Black shows his special skill in this complicated position,"   
 (which is) "dangerous for both sides."  - GM Max Euwe   

"Thus the White King will be pushed back so it cannot support the passed Pawn anymore.  
 The right move was 39.Kxd5!, and ... "  - GM Pal Benko  

  ( Also, '39.c6?' - GM Pal Benko. )   


     [ Benko discovered that it was much better for White to play:   
         >/=  39.Kxd5!,  "+/="  (Maybe - '')   {Diagram?}   
        when the first player has some definite winning chances from this particular position.   

        **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **     **  

        ( Now Benko gives the following lines:  39...Qxc3;  ('!?/?!')  {Diagram?}     
          This is probably not best, Fritz indicates that ...g5!?; or even the move of: ...Qd3+!?;   
          might be Black's best defense in this particular position.   

               ( Or  39...Qd3+!?;  40.Kc6 Qxc3;  41.Kxb5,  ''  {Dm?}   
                 (but White is clearly better). )     

          40.c6!('' or "+/-")   {Diagram?}   
          (White is clearly much better in this position, and has a very solid edge.)   
           and ... "White could have had chances to win." - GM P. Benko )  ]   


Now Marshall does not miss a single trick  ...   
and shows a very impressive command of all the nuances and tactics of the ensuing Q+P end-game here.   
 39...Qa4+!;  40.Ke3,    
"On K5, the White King would hamper the activity of its own Queen."  - GM Maximillian Euwe   

     [ After the following moves:   
        (</=)  40.Ke5!? f6+41.Kf5 g6+ 42.Kg4 Qa7!43.Kh3,  ('!')  {Diag?}   
        (The only way to try and maintain any real winning chances here.)   

             ( After the moves:  </= 43.Qxf6 Qg1+;  44.Kh3 Qf1+;   "="  {Diagram?}    
               the White King cannot escape the many checks from this particular position.     
               Any good chess program will confirm this. )    

        43...Kf7!44.Qxh6!? Qf2!45.Qh7+ Kf8!;  ("=")   {Diagram?}   
        The insecurity of both sides Monarchs cancels each other out, and leaves the position   
        at hand - deliciously balanced. ]   


 40...Qa7+!;  41.Kd3!?,  {Box?}   
"Or 41.Q-Q4, Q-B2; 42.QxP, K-B1;  and Black can bring his King nearer and probably draw.   
  White prefers to have his Queen controlling the QB7 square." - GM Max Euwe 

     [ Or the players could try:  41.Qd4!? Qe7+!42.Kd3 Qd6;  "="  {Dm?}   
        but Black has more than enough play to draw. ]   


 41...b4!!;  (wow)    
A truly brilliant, unexpected move. 
(& Perhaps missed by Emanuel Lasker?  Of course today, the computer finds this shot almost instantly.)  

"Thus Black gives his Queen more freedom of maneuvre. White cannot take the NP because of 41...Q-R3ch;   
 and Black wins the advanced passed Pawn." - GM Max Euwe  
 (Reinfeld offers a similar comment at this point in the game.) 


     [ If instead, Black chose the more "natural" continuation ... he would have lost horribly.  
        For example:   </=  41...Qa1!?42.Qb8+! Kh743.c7,  ("+/-")  {Diagram?}   
        and when Black runs out of checks, White will promote.  

       ** ** ** **   ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **   ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** **   ** ** ** **    

             ( One sample line would be:   
               43.c7 Qd1+44.Ke3 Qe1+!?45.Kd4! Qd2+?!46.Kc5 Qxc3+{D?}   
               Thus far, this is a line that I analyzed with an old Internet student of mine.   
               (I sent him a copy of this analysis to review. He initially felt that Black had    
                enough play to draw after the move 43.c7, in this variation.)  

               Now White does not capture Black's QNP, but instead uses it as a shield.   
               47.Kb6! Qf6+48.Kb7 Qe7!?49.Qd8,  ("+/-")  {Diagram?}   
               and it is just about time for White to give up on this one. ) ]  


 42.c7!? Qa6+;  43.Kd2!?,  (hmmm)    
The simplest move ... but after this play, Lasker has not even a ghost of a winning chance. 

     [ Or  >/=  43.c4!? Qc6!;  ("=")  {Diag?}    
        with approximately equal chances. ]  


 43...bxc3+;  44.Kxc3 Qc6+;  45.Kd2 f6; ('!')  ("=")   {See the diagram given - below.}      
(Black's last move controls the e5-square and prevented Q-K5.)  

{Only Black has anything to play for from this position. I must conclude that Marshall had made 
  - the very reasonable goal - of trying only to draw the World Champ, especially with the Black pieces.  
  - LM A.J. Goldsby I} 

"Here the game was given up as a draw.  After 46.Kd1!,  (threatening 47.Qc1);  46...d4;  47.Qc1, QxP/f3+;   
{and} the White King cannot escape perpetual check." - GM Max Euwe 
[ I converted his line (here) from the English Standard Descriptive Notation to {the more common} algebraic. {A.J.G.} ]    

Another idea ... not pointed out by any of the books ... is for Black to play ...d4! White would then be forced to capture   
to capture the d-pawn, as the second party threatens ...Qc3+; (followed by advancing the Black d-Pawn); with concrete  
problems for White. After QxP/d4, and then ...QxP/c7; it is obvious to almost any player that the resulting position is  
probably drawn.  



mar_lvsm-cs04_pos6.gif, 08 KB

  The final position of the actual game here.  



     [ I spent a couple of hours one night analyzing this ending with a {former} Internet student. 
       We looked at dozens of lines, what follows is just a brief example:   

        45...f6!46.h4!? d4!47.Qxd4!?{Diagram?}   
        After almost a full day of analysis, I am convinced that this would be an error for White. 

             ( An improvement would {probably} be:    
                >/=  47.h5! Qc3+;  48.Kd1 Kf7!; "~"  with a rather unclear position. )    

        47...Qxc7; "=/+"  {Diagram?}    
        and although Black is slightly better, the endgame manuals indicate that this position is a theoretical draw. 
        (All the Pawns on the same side of the board, most Q+P endings of this sort are drawn - but only with  
          perfect defense by White.) ]   

    *** *** *** *** *** ***  *** *** *** *** *** ***  *** *** *** *** *** ***  *** *** *** *** *** ***   

"Sharp and decisive chess marked the beginning of the second week of play of the International Masters Tournament,   
six of the eight games were over before luncheon. At five of the boards, (the) Americans were pitted against the Europeans,   
and the latter had somewhat the better of it when the count was taken for the day. Nevertheless, when it is taken into account   
that Marshall forced Lasker to yield him a draw, and this in spite of the fact that he played almost the entire game a Pawn   
down; the patriots, who take particular pride in the Stars and Stripes, had much to be thankful for."   
- The original bulletins for this event. (Hartwig Cassel and Hermann Helms.)   

While neither party probably grasped the importance of this contest at the time that it was played, it turned out to be one 
of the most pivotal struggles for the final scores of the tournament cross-table for this event. (If Lasker had managed to    
win this contest ... I am not so sure that history would have been exactly the same!)  


I used many different books to annotate this game. The following are just a few of the sources that were 
consulted in the process of trying to illuminate this very historic struggle:   

  1. Steve Etzel's excellent website on this event. (  

  2. The book of the tournament ... by Olomouc.  [Copyright (c) 1998.] 

  3. The most excellent book, "The Collected Games of Emanuel Lasker," by Ken Whyld. (Pub. in 1998.)  

  4. The original  book  of the tourney by  Fred Reinfeld  ... published in 1935. 
    {New York, NY/USA. Black Knight Press}   

  5. A complete copy of all of the original bulletins for this event.  (Thank-you, Steve Etzel.)    

  6. The December 2004 issue of the (USCF) magazine, "Chess Life."  (Pal Benko's column.)   

  7. The very fine book:  "BOBBY FISCHER, The Greatest?,"  by  GM Max Euwe. [ 1979, pg. # 138.]   
    {I also meticulously checked this game many times - with about half a dozen very strong chess programs.} 

  8. AFTER I had almost finished this game, a student sent me a copy of some analysis of this game. Apparently, 
    it was published in some American chess magazine - I believe H. Helms was the source. 


  Copyright (c) A.J. Goldsby, 2004 - 2005. All rights reserved. 



A 2013 e-mail from a master. [marshall_lask-vs-marsh_1904.gif, 09 KB]

I had looked at this game many times over the years. I also had deeply analyzed this contest at least once before, but wound up losing all of those files when my computer crashed. (I later found some of these files on floppy disks.) I used the excellent program,  ChessBase 8.0  to prepare the notes (this time around) and game analysis. I used the program,  Chess Captor 2.25  to prepare the diagrams. I used  "FrontPage"  to prepare and polish the HTML for my website.  

  This (web) page  (just the basic HTML shell)  was created in  May,  2004.   This page was last updated on 04/02/14 .    
  (Final format and posting completed on: Saturday, May 21st, 2005.)  


 Click  HERE  to go to, (or return to); my  Home Page  for this site. 

Click  HERE  to go to, (or return to); my  End-Game School  on this site.


  Click  HERE  to return to my page on  Frank J. Marshall.  

Click  HERE  to go to ... or return to ... the Electronic Archive & Museum. (For Marshall.) 

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    Copyright ()  A.J. Goldsby,  1985 - 2014.  All rights reserved.     

   "A counter"   

  (This game was only previewed by around five people.)