Kindred’s Special: Reshevsky vs. Kashdan Match, NYC 1942, Game 10

What brought about this match in 1942? It happened. It was a first time event for the series of US Chess Championship Tournament series where Reshevsky virtually dominated the events and American chess without loss.  It was certainly most undesireable to have two players sharing the US Championship Title.  This arose when, for the the first time, Reshevsky did not sweep the opposition off the board and had to share lst  place with Isaac Kashdan. He had played 75-games without a loss since his defeat by Horowitz in 1936. Thus, losing games 2 and 4 in the early start of this match playoff caused a sensation and great following.  He won four and drew three in the next seven games and by game 11 held a 7.5-3.5 after 11-games.  Kashdan resigned the match which was set for 14-games. Winning games 10 and 11 was decisive.  And here in the next segments, I present games 10 and 11 to conclude this historic battle waged over the 64-squares.

White:  Isaac Kashdan      vs.    Black:  Samuel Reshevsky     Opening:  Gruenfeld Defence

1. d4  This is the first time he opened with the QP.

1. … Nf6  2. c4  g6  3. Nc3  d5  4. Bf4  Bg7  5. e3  c6 Pursuing his his desire to avoid unnecessary risks, Reshevsky continues his strategy off the board of just playing safe. A more tactical game could be achieved by playing 5. … c5 which might play into the hands of his opponent who desperately needs to win this game with having the white pieces.

6. Nf3  O-O  7. Qb3  dxc4  8. Bxc4  Nbd7  9. O-O  Perhaps this is a place where my square count would dictate as a spatial edge the interesting move 9. e4! as it appears he has an initiative and added advantage that Black has some problems finding good squares for his pieces.

9. … Nb6  10. Be2  Be6  11. Qc2  Nbd5 12. Be5  Bf5  13. Qb3  Qb6  14. Bc4  Nxc3  15. bxc3  Ne4  16. Qa3  Bxe5  17. Nxe5  Qc7  18. Rad1  It would be harder to combat the white position had he gone instead 18. f3!! Nd3  19. e4 or Be2 with a good center and possible tactical chances.

18. …Nd6  19. Bb3  Since the bishop cannot remain on this diagonal because of the following chase by the a-pawn, it would have saved time by playing directly to d3.

19. … a5!  20. Qc1  a4  21. Bc2  c5  Striking at the center and creates an unfavorable situation for Kashdan.

22. Bxf5  Nxf5  23. e4?  This idea is wrong and deserves a ? because a more straightforward 23. Qa3  b6 and 24. Rb1 looks good again with square count leading the way. One mistake compounds often into another which occurs here.

23. … cxd4! 24. Ng4? His failure to grasp the best from the position stalls Kashdan’s tactical chances of which two present themselves here.  The tactic Knight shot 24. Nxf7!? Rxf7 25. exf5 dxc3 26. fxg6 hxg6 27. Qc2 keeps threats alive like the g-pawn and Rook jump move threats of Rd3 >Rc1. It was probably Kashdan’s best chance to score a full point in this game.

24. … Nd6  25. Rxd4  Rac8  26. Ne3  Nb5  27. Rc4  Qe5  28. f4?!  Qe6  29. f5  Qb6  30. Rxc8  Rxc8  31. c4  Nd6  32. Kh1 Nxe4 33. Nd5  Qd6  34. fxg6  hxg6  35. Qb1 Rxc4  36. Qxb7  Nf2+ 37. Kg1 Ng4 38. Nxe7+ Kg7  39. Qb2+ f6  White Resigns.

The next, game 11 seals Black’s fate as Reshevsky grinds his opponent with positional and tactical finesse.  Victory was a must in-game 11 to continue the 14 scheduled game match. It was not to be. So Reshevsky repeats as the US Chess Champion once again, a position he held much of the time until Bobby Fischer emerged on the scene many years later.


One Response to “Kindred’s Special: Reshevsky vs. Kashdan Match, NYC 1942, Game 10”

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