Short games are a must for teaching Chess in almost any circumstance because of the time factor. When time is a factor a teacher must opt for the slash and dash of Mikhail Tal
over that of the ultimate grinder, Ulf Andersson.
There are many books containing short games, and most have seen action, but I have recently been adding short games to a folder and it was the resource used at the last minute when pressed into service with the clock ticking. Unfortunately, I did not copy the url and had no idea how it made it to the folder. This was disconcerting, to say the least. The game was played over a century ago. After the lesson my brain was racked in a futile attempt to locate the origin of the game. I put the game into both 365Chess and the ChessbaseDatabase in a futile attempt to locate the origin of the game, and was shocked to discover it was not found in either database. Flummoxed, I went to bed, still thinking about the game. After telling myself to put it outta my mind I was ready for sleep…When drifting off to nod heaven it hit me! It had to have come from the excellent website of Mark Crowther,
The Week In Chess, (https://theweekinchess.com/) the granddaddy of them all. Just about every morning the first Chess website to which I surf is the venerable TWIC, and each and every day there is a new Chess Puzzle which I attempt to solve. What follows are the pithy comments made to the youngsters as this writer attempted to teach the children well in a very limited amount of time.
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.Bc4 (4 d4 is the move) 4…Nxe4 5.O-O (Nxe4 is best) 5…Nxc3 6.bxc3 (Taking with the d-pawn is better) 6…d6 (6…e4!) 7.Re1 (7 Qe2!) 7…Be7 (“Castling looks good”) 8.d4 Bg4 (“Why not castle?”) 9.h3 Bxf3 (I would retreat the prelate to h5. Then comes the question, “What’s a prelate?”) 10.Qxf3 O-O 11.Bb5 (“I would play Be3 or Rb1.” Then comes feedback. “Which one”?) 11…Na5 (“11…exd4 must be examined”) 12.Bd3 (“How about 12 dxe5?”) 12…g6 13.Bh6 (“Again, 12 dxe5 is possible”) 13…Re8 14.dxe5 dxe5 (“Maybe 14…Bg5 or how about Bf8?”) 15.Rxe5
15…Nc6 (“Looks like 15…Bf8 had to be played)
This is when the AW was ASTOUNDED when a little girl, who rarely speaks unless spoken to, erupted with, “QUEEN TAKES PAWN!!!” After gathering myself I asked, “Queen takes pawn, where?” She answered, “On f7.” I replied with another question, “And what does Queen takes pawn do?” She blurted, “It checks the King!” So I followed with, “Now say it right.” And she said, “Queen takes pawn on f7 with check!” All I said was, “YES! Ma’am.” That may have been the first time she had ever been addressed as “Ma’am.” She was giddy with excitement…and so was the AW.
16.Qxf7+ Kxf7 17.Bc4+ Kf6 18.Re6+ Kf7 19.Rd6#
Oskar Naegeli vs Emil Mayer
Zuerich CC Zuerich, 1908
C46 Four knights, Italian variation
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.Bc4 Nxe4 5.O-O Nxc3 6.bxc3 d6 7.Re1 Be7 8.d4 Bg4 9.h3 Bxf3 10.Qxf3 O-O 11.Bb5 Na5 12.Bd3 g6 13.Bh6 Re8 14.dxe5 dxe5 15.Rxe5 Nc6 16.Qxf7+ Kxf7 17.Bc4+ Kf6 18.Re6+ Kf7 19.Rd6#
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 (C25 Vienna game) 2…Nf6 (C26 Vienna, Falkbeer variation) 3.Nf3 (C42 Petrov three knights game) 3…Nc6 (C46 Four knights game) 4.Bc4 (According to every Stockfish program, all three of them shown at the ChessbaseDatabase, 4 d4 is de rigueur, yet in 5191 games 5 d4 has scored only 49% against an average opponent rated 2434, while the move 5 Bb5 has scored 54% in 6164 games against 2408 rated opposition. The move played in the game has only scored 44%. My recommendation is to give them the Glek and play 5 g3! Let me ad that after black’s 3rd move appeared onscreen one of the girls squealed, “That allows the fork trick!” This made the AW smile, thinking they had at least learned something…) 4…Nxe4 5.O-O (All three SF programs play 5 Nxe4, yet it has only scored 38% in 126 games versus an average opponent rated 2376. Castles has scored 43% versus 69 opponents rated 2371 on average) 5…Nxc3 6.bxc3 (This move was not found at the CBDB and you know what that means…It was a different story over at 365Chess with a total of eight games located in which the move was 6 bxc3) 6…d6 (This move was not one of the three moves having been attempted in this particular position. There are six examples of 6…d5; one each of 6…Be7 and 6…Be6) 7.Re1 (If you do not know what move the AW would make you have not read enough of the blog. For you without a clue, it has something to do with the title of that recent extremely popular Chess video with Gambit in the title) 7…Be7 8.d4 Bg4 9.h3 Bxf3 10.Qxf3 O-O 11.Bb5 Na5 12.Bd3 g6 13.Bh6 Re8 14.dxe5 dxe5 15.Rxe5 Nc6 16.Qxf7+ Kxf7 17.Bc4+ Kf6 18.Re6+ Kf7 19.Rd6# 1-0