The Gazette - February 2020

Sponsored by The Ulverscroft Foundation
Edited by Julie Leonard
The views expressed in the Gazette do not necessarily reflect the policies or views of the BCA, nor those of the editor.

The Dresden Trap

Editor’s note: Thank you to Hugo Roman for sending in this article!

The second Tarrasch Trap in the Steinitz Variation is sometimes referred to as the Dresden Trap. Tarrasch published analysis of it in 1891, but 18 months later Georg Marco fell into it in Tarrasch versus Marco, Dresden 1892. Tarrasch spent just five minutes thinking for the entire game.

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 d6 This is the Steinitz Variation of the Ruy Lopez.

4. d4 Bd7 Black breaks the pin to meet the threat of 5.d5.

5. Nc3 Nf6 6. 0-0 Be7 7. Re1 Laying a subtle trap. Castling seems natural for Black but it loses a pawn. Instead, 7...exd4 is better, an example of giving up the centre, when it is needed.

7... 0-0? 8. Bxc6 Bxc6 9. dxe5 dxe5 10. Qxd8 Raxd8 11. Nxe5

Black's best move here is probably 11...Bd7, although White would remain a pawn ahead.

11... Bxe4?! 12. Nxe4 Nxe4 White can go astray too, 13.Rxe4?? would be a horrible blunder as Black would checkmate with 13...Rd1+ 14. Re1 Rxe1#. White blocks that possibility with his next move, making the threat real against the black knight on e4.

13. Nd3 f5 The black knight cannot move because of the pin against the bishop on e7.

14. f3 Bc5+?! Better is 14...Bh4 15. g3 Nxg3 16. hxg3 Bxg3 where Black get two pawns for the knight.

15. Nxc5 Nxc5 16. Bg5 Rd5 17. Be7 Re8 18. c4 1–0 White wins at least the exchange, so Marco resigned.