Tarrasch Trap

Tarrasch Trap

Tarrasch Trap refers to two different chess opening traps in the Ruy Lopez that are named for Siegbert Tarrasch.Unlike many variations that appear only in analysis, Tarrasch actually sprung his traps against masters in tournament games.

Tarrasch Trap in the Open Variation

Chess diagram|=
tright
Tarrasch Trap in the Open Variation
=
rd| | | | |rd|kd| |=
| |pd|qd|bd|pd|pd|pd|=
pd| |nd| |bd| | | |=
|pd| |pd|pl| | | |=
| | |nl|nd| | | |=
|bl|pl| | | | | |=
pl|pl| | | |pl|pl|pl|=
rl|nl|bl|ql|rl| |kl| |=
Position after 11...Qd7? White wins a piece
Two masters actually fell for this trap against Tarrasch: Zukertort at Frankfurt in 1887 and Gunsberg at Manchester in 1890.:1. e4 e5:2. Nf3 Nc6:3. Bb5 a6:4. Ba4 Nf6:5. 0-0 Nxe4This is the Open Variation of the Ruy Lopez.:6. d4 b5:7. Bb3 d5:8. dxe5 Be6:9. c3 Be7:10. Re1 0-0:11. Nd4 Qd7?Falling into the trap (see diagram).:12. Nxe6Black's pawn on d5 will be pinned no matter how he recaptures.After 12...Qxe6 or 12...fxe6 White wins a piece with 13.Rxe4.

Tarrasch Trap in the Steinitz Variation

Chess diagram|=
tright
Tarrasch Trap in the Steinitz Variation
=
rd| | |qd|kd| | |rd|=
pd|pd|pd|bd|bd|pd|pd|pd|=
| |nd|pd| |nd| | |=
|bl| | |pd| | | |=
| | |pl|pl| | | |=
| |nl| | |nl| | |=
pl|pl|pl| | |pl|pl|pl|=
rl| |bl|ql|rl| |kl| |=
Position after 7.Re1. Now 7...0-0? falls into the trap
The second Tarrasch Trap occurs in the Steinitz Variation.Tarrasch published analysis of this trap in 1891, but 18 months later Marco fell into it in Tarrasch–Marco Dresden 1892. Tarrasch spent just 5 minutes of thinking for the whole game.:1. e4 e5:2. Nf3 Nc6:3. Bb5 d6This is the Steinitz Variation of the Ruy Lopez.:4. d4 Bd7Black breaks the pin to meet the threat of 5.d5.:5. Nc3 Nf6:6. O-O Be7:7. Re1Laying a subtle trap (see diagram).
Castling seems natural for Black, but instead 7...exd4 is better.:7. ... O-O?:8. Bxc6 Bxc6:9. dxe5 dxe5:10. Qxd8 Raxd8:11. Nxe5Black's best move here is probably 11...Bd7, although White would remain a pawn ahead.:11. ... Bxe4:12. Nxe4 Nxe4Now 13.Rxe4?? would be a horrible blunder as Black would checkmate with 13...Rd1+ 14. Re1 Rxe1#.White blocks that possibility with his next move, making the threat real against the black knight on e4.:13. Nd3 f5The black knight can't move because of the pin against the bishop on e7. :14. f3 Bc5+:15. Nxc5 Nxc5:16. Bg5 Rd5:17. Be7 Re8:18. c4

White wins at least the exchange, so Marco resigned.

References

*cite book | author=Hooper, David and Kenneth Whyld | title=The Oxford Companion to Chess | publisher=Oxford University| year=1996 | id=ISBN 0-19-280049-3


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