The Amateur Eye – King’s Gambit/P1

Growing up, one of the first openings I played was the King’s Gambit.  References and actual game play I collected in a note pad.  1. e4  e5 2. f4 fit perfectly in my study of the chessboard seen here in my July 2007 columns, especially relating to the f7 square.

Keres, Spassky, Bronstein, and Marshall are among the giants of chess who followed in the tradition after the old guard like Anderssen and Zukertort.  And none other than Judit Polgar is writing a column for New In Chess where her latest article is The Queen’s King’s Gambit.

The gambit can be a double-edged sword slashing both ways.  Short cc games are often the result. Keres vs. Villa  Here is a sample:  1. e4 e5  2. f4  e:f4  3. Nf3  Be7  4. Bc4 Nf6  5. Nc3  N:e4  6. Ne5  Bh4+  7. g3  f:g3? Erring is commonplace in the KG.  8. B:f7+ Kf8  9. O-O g:h2+ 10. K:h2  Bg3+  11. Kg2  Qh4  12. Nf3 Black resigns.  Keres winds up on the short end in this one against Menke.  1. e4  e5  2. f4 e:f4  3. Nc3  Qh4+ 4. Ke2  d5  5. N:d5  Bg4+  6. Nf3  Nc6 7.N:c7+ Kd8 8. N:a8  Ne5  9. h3  Bh5 10. Rg1? Qg3!  11. Qe1 B:f3+ 12. g:f3  Q:f3 mate.

Spassky was noted for his unpredictable character when sitting down at the board.  Against David Bronstein, he decided to employ it as both he and his opponent were KG fans. Leningrad 1960 was a barn burner.  1. e4 e5  2. f4  e:f5  3. Nf3  d5 4. e:d5  Bd6  5. Nc3  Ne7  6. d4  O-O  7. Bd3  Ne4  8. O-O  h6  9. Ne4  N:d5  10. c4  Ne3  11. Be3  f:e3  12. c5  Be7 13. Bc2  Re8 14. Qd3  e2  15. Nd6! Nf8  16. N:f7  e:f1/Q+ 17. R:f1 Bf5  18. Q:f5  Qd7 19. Qf4 Bf6 20. N/3e5 Qe7 21. Bb3 B:e5  22. N:e5+ Kh7  23. Qe4+  Black resigns.

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