Eliot Hearst and John Knott blog about blindfold chess
Monday, November 16, 2009

Both Without Sight: Two of the Best Blindfold Masters Faced Each Other in 1923

Alexander Alekhine, generally accepted as the best simultaneous blindfold player of all time, considered Friedrich Sämisch (1896-1975) as a brilliant blindfold player, “technically perfect, fast, and confident”. Many chess historians rate Sämisch as Germany’s best-ever blindfold player, although most of his displays were on only 10 boards (his maximum was 20, which was not a world record at that time). In a vast collection of blindfold games amassed by Hindemburg Melao of Brazil, we recently discovered a game in which they both played blindfolded (the exact conditions of this one-on-one contest were not spelled out). Here Alekhine won by a sparkling queen sacrifice, and most readers will have no trouble figuring out why it led to Sämisch’s resignation.

A. Alekhine-F. Sämisch      B30
Berlin,1923 (Both players blindfolded)

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Be2 e6 4.0–0 d6 5.d4 cxd4 6.Nxd4 Nf6 7.Bf3 Ne5 8.c4 Nxf3+ 9.Qxf3 Be7 10.Nc3 0–0 11.b3 Nd7 12.Bb2 Bf6 13.Rad1 a6 14.Qg3 Qc7 15.Kh1 Rd8 16.f4 b6 17.f5 Be5

Alekhine vs. Samisch

18.fxe6!! Bxg3 19.exf7+ Kh8 20.Nd5! 1–0

Permalink  |  Posted by Eliot Hearst at 02:34 AM


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