Steinitz - Lasker

by Srinivas Reddy
(Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh, India)

Laskers and Steinitz face off

Laskers and Steinitz face off

This classic game is played by Wilhelm Steinitz of Austria and Emanuel Lasker of Germany, in the World Chess Championship, New York (1894).
This game had stood as an important milestone in Steinitz's career, before getting dethroned by emerging World Champion Emanuel Lasker.

White-Wilhelm Steinitz
Black-Emanuel Lasker
Venue-New York

The game is as follows:

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.d3 d6

Initially, Steinitz looks like he attacked too early and Lasker is trying to defend himself.

5. c3 Bd7 6. Ba4 g6 7. Nbd2 Bg7 8. Nc4 O-O

Now the two sides look like they are trying to deploy their forces in the field. Lasker looks like defending his knight strongly. Although, Steinitz looks like he has been drawn backwards, but he is also trying to strengthen his minor pieces. But Lasker is too quick to protect his king and he castled.

9. Ne3 Ne7 10. Bb3 Bb3 11. c6 Qc7 12. Ng5 d5 13. f3 Rad8

Now, Steinitz looks like he has a clear idea of what he is doing. Steinitz is trying to advance his forces Bishop, Knight and pawns towards opponent's King. But there is little advance from Lasker's side, seems like he is trying to hatch some strategies towards his opponent.

14. g4 dxe4 15. fxe4 h6 16. Qf3 Be8 17. Bc2 Nd7 18. Nh3 Nc5

Looks like the beginning of an attack by Lasker against Steinitz in the 14th move in this one of the best Chess matches of history. Steinitz also answers by attacking with a pawn. Steinitz moves his Queen and deploys it forward and withdraws his Bishop from Black's vulnerable pawn.

19. Nf2 b5 20. g5 h5 21. Nf5 gxf5 22. exf5 f6 23. g6 Nxg6 24. fxg6 Bxg6

The Knight is withdrawn by Stenitz, after the withdrawal of the Bishop. Surprisingly, Steinitz is ready to sacrifice his other Knight to make the Kingside weak to attacks. Lasker also sacrifices one of his Knights to make the matter worse for him. Stenitz looks like he is advancing towards the king without any obstacles against him.

25. Rg1 e4 26. dXe4 Kh7 27. fxg6 Bxg6 28. Qf5+ Kf7

Though, it looks like Lasker is trying to defend his King, the ground for his defeat had been laid. Lasker is trying to threaten Steinitz by trying to attack his Queen. But, Steinitz is ready to make a historic win in few steps. He checks the opponent's king for the first time in this game.

29.Qxh5+ Kg8 30. Qxc5 Qe5 31. Be3 a6 32. a4 Rfe8 33. axb5 axb5

Now the Black king has less room for his escape. Lasker looks like he is trying to defend his king which is to be proven futile in the following steps. After some movement of pawns here and there Steinitz dares and assault opponent's queen.

34. Qxe5 Rxe5 35. Ra6 Rc8 36. Ng4 Re7 37. Bc5 Re8 38. Ne3 Bf8

Now, slowly Steinitz is advancing his remaining pieces to smash his opponent. Lasker cannot do anything but he has to pay the price for the mistakes he has made before.

39. Bd4 Kf7 40. h5 Be7 41. Bb3+ Kf8 42. Nf5

After setting his Knight into position the weak Black King moves here and there. But finally Lakser surrenders to Steinitz's mindblowing moves. This is one of the final victories of the once World Chess Champion Wilhelm Steinitz against Emanuel Lasker.

Play through the moves of this memorable World Championship game.

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