Dennis M's Chess Site

This is a blog for chess fans by a chess fan. I enjoy winning as much as anyone else, and I've had a reasonable amount of success as a competitor, but what keeps me coming back to the game is its beauty. And that, primarily, is what this site will be about! All material copyrighted.

Monday, April 04, 2005

The Swiderski Bind?

In my post on the (alleged) Geza Maroczy-Viktor Korchnoi game, I mentioned en passant that part of Maroczy's claim to fame is a pawn structure bearing his name, the so-called Maroczy Bind. The history bug bit Victor Reppert, and he apparently tried to find the stem game, the maiden voyage, the tournament debut of Maroczy's eponymous brainchild.

The result? Nothing. Not a game found he, so he sent me a comment and passed along the challenge: could I do any better?

At first, I assumed he must have used overly strict search parameters and optimistically fired up ChessBase 9.0. I opened the Mega 2005 database, entered "Maroczy" (with White) in the game data filter and White pawns on c4 and e4 in the position filter, and subsequently did the same for him with Black (but with Black pawns on c5 and e5). A number of games popped up in both cases, but only one or two were even vaguely Bindish, and neither could plausibly be thought the basis of the "Maroczy Bind" label.

Fortunately, Andrew ("Andy") Soltis came to the rescue. A book I found quite helpful as an up-and-coming kid was his Pawn Structure Chess, and in the second edition (1995), pages 108-109, he provides the explanation:

"Oddly enough, Geza Maroczy (pronounced MAHRotsee) was not the originator of the pawn formation that bears his name. In fact, the first master game to gain recognition of the Bind was Swiderski-Maroczy, Monte Carlo 1904, in which Maroczy, with Black in a Dragon formation, was the 'bindee' rather than the 'binder.' It was his opponent who played c2-c4 and e2-e4. But for years later Maroczy, a great Hungarian grandmaster and chess journalist, repeatedly drew attention to the powers of the Bind, and by the 1920s, permitting the Bind was equated with making a blunder. [For the sake of those afraid of the Bind, I continue:] In our time, however, the Bind has been shorn of much of its reputation because of the many methods of freeing Black's game. In its purest form thet Bind is still a very dangerous animal, but Black can avoid the pure form if he plays carefully."

Swiderski,Rudolf - Maroczy,Geza [B38]
Monte Carlo Monte Carlo (4), 1904

1.e4 c5 2.c4 Nc6 3.Nf3 g6 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nxd4

The basic Bind. 5...Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Nc3 d6 8.Be2 Bd7 9.0-0 0-0 10.h3 [10.Qd2 Nxd4 11.Bxd4 Bc6 12.f3 a5 13.b3 Nd7 14.Be3 Nc5 15.Rab1 Qb6 16.Rfc1 is a normal, main line position that has occurred in hundreds of games, but although Swiderski's move is less incisive, it can't really be described as an error, either.] 10...Nxd4 11.Bxd4 Bc6 12.Qd3 Nd7 13.Bxg7 Kxg7 14.b4 b6 15.Rfd1 a5 16.a3 axb4 17.axb4 Qc7 18.Nd5 Bxd5 19.Qxd5 Rxa1 20.Rxa1 f5 21.Qe6 Ne5 22.exf5 Rxf5 23.Ra8 Rf8 24.Rxf8 Kxf8

White still has a slight edge here, but now he miscalculates, loses a pawn and the game. 25.c5? [25.Qd5+/=] 25...dxc5 26.f4 Nf7 27.Bc4 Qxf4 28.bxc5 bxc5 29.Qc8+ Kg7 30.Qxc5 Qe5-/+ 31.Qc8 Nd6 32.Qg8+ Kh6 33.Qf8+ Kg5 34.Bf1 Qe3+ 35.Qf2 Qxf2+ 36.Kxf2-+ Kf4 37.Bd3 Ne4+ 38.Ke2 g5 39.Bc2 h5 40.Bb3 e5 41.Bf7 h4 42.Bc4 Nf6 43.Kf2 Ke4 44.Bf7 Kd3 45.Bg6+ e4 46.Bf5 Kd2 47.Bxe4 Nxe4+ 48.Kf3 Kd3 0-1


  • At 1:54 PM, Blogger Victor Reppert said…

    Actually, I had found the Swiderski game a few months ago, but I couldn't find anything else. I wondered if there your stronger search tools would come up with something. Apparently Soltis had us beat to the punch a long time ago. I would have thought this would have been material for one of his "Chess to Enjoy" columns for Chess Lies, but I never saw it, and would have remembered if he had put it in there.


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