Monday, 3 July 2017

Danish delight

As much as the Traxler is the one opening that will rule them all, my first love was the Danish Gambit. I can't quite remember where I first read about it (possibly the Penguin Book of Chess Openings), but I played it in my first few chess events, with a degree of success. It was only when people started playing the Schlecter line against me that I moved away from it.
Here is a game from 1909 where it was used to beat a reigning world champion, albeit in a consultation game. 5. ... Nf6 is a rare choice these days (as 5. ... d5 is considered the path to equality), but one that tries to hang on to material. For most of the game Black does keep the 2 gambit pawns, but as you can see, mate (aided by a huge lead in development) is far more important than material.

Janowski/Soldatenkov - Lasker/Taubenhaus [C21]
Consultation, 1909

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