Monday, August 5

Scheveningen tournament, Round 2: Five tied for lead with 2-0; Janowski, Alekhine, Ed. Lasker, Breyer win again, as does Geus

The tourney favorites again scored victories in the second round of the International Masters' Tournament at Scheveningen, with David Janowski defeating Fritz Englund, Alexander Alekhine besting Jan Willem te Kolsté, and Gyula Breyer topping Rudolf Loman.  Also winning for the second time running were Edward Lasker, victor over Willem Schelfhout, and Klaas Geus, who got the better of Abraham Speijer.  In other games, England's F.D. Yates took the full point from Arnold van Foreest, while A.G. Olland and Jacques Mieses played to the round's only draw.  The Masters provided a feast of chess today, with sharp attacks, delicate endgames, unusual openings, and the occasional blunder all on the menu, which the reader is invited to sample below.

Scores after Round 2: Janowski, Alekhine, Breyer, Ed. Lasker, Geus 2; Yates, Englund, Loman 1; Olland, Mieses 1/2, te Kolsté, Speijer, Schelfhout, van Foreest 0.  The third round will pit Ed. Lasker against Breyer and Janowski against Geus, ensuring that at least two perfect scores will fall.

Turning to the games, Englund offered the Danish gambit to Janowski, who returned the offered pawn with 3...d3.  The Franco-Polish Master began to assert himself in the middlegame, deciding matters with an exchange sacrifice at the 23rd move.

The Alekhine-te Kolsté encounter saw the uncommon debut 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 d6 3.Bg5 Nbd7.  White appeared at one point to entertain notions of a mating attack on the King-side, but the contest later resolved itself into a relatively equal endgame that came to a sudden and unexpected end after Black's 30...Rh4?, a blunder allowing Alekhine to force the win through a series of checks.

Breyer defeated Loman in excellent style, sacrificing a pawn to bring about a winning King and pawn endgame.  The maneuver beginning with 24.c4, along with the subsequent play, will greatly repay careful study.

Geus, playing White against Speijer, obtained a large advantage in a Giuoco Piano, and one wonders whether he might not have decided the contest in his favor sooner.  Nevertheless, the first player secured the victory after 68 moves of a Bishop vs. Knight endgame that he handled with assurance.

Edward Lasker, who chose the defense 1.d4 d5 2.c4 Bf5 vs. Schelfhout, displayed a vigorous and masterful style, first winning the exchange and then scoring the point through some lovely tempo-play in the endgame.

Yates, as second player in a Two Knights' Defense, recorded a rather one-sided victory over van Foreest.

Finally, the two veterans Olland and Mieses tested each other in a game beginning with the eccentric 1.d4 c5 2.d5 d6 3.e4 g6, and agreed to a draw after 33 moves in a position with heavy pieces still on the board.

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