Grandmasters and Cryptographers

Grandmasters and Cryptographers

Hikaru Junction

Grandmasters and Cryptographers

To begin the blog, I’d like to note two interesting coincidences. First of all, while reviewing one of Anish Giri’s games, I remembered greenpawn’s four-name grandmasters: Reti, Giri, Euwe, and Fine. What results did they have when they played each other?

Well, Reti, Giri, and Fine, in this respective triangle, never played. The only players which played against each other were Reti against Euwe, and Euwe against Fine. Each of these matches finished, excluding draws, 2-2.

If we take the names of the three grandmasters which never played, Reti, Giri, and Fine, and we anagram them, we can jumble up these letters to get several possibilities, including the following: If tieing, I err.

Unfortunately, Giri didn’t have any games against any of the others. However, if we take some of the games the others played against each other, they did each have errors (a surprising amount) in games which looked drawish. For example, take the following:

Reuben Fine–Max Euwe Zandevoort 1936

Here is another drawn position (or, at least, I believe it to be drawn most of the time.)

Max Euwe–Richard Reti Rotterdam 1921

So what pair of mistakes was made moves after this position? We’ll dive into the same fragment–this time looking at what really happened.

Max Euwe–Richard Reti Rotterdam 1921

And now, I have to mention an article I found online, in American Chess Magazine, volume 1, number 2, dated 1897. It has several puzzles, each about chess players with four-letter names, and it had to be included.

I will now include one more game which showcases unfortunate mishaps from balanced positions. This are between Milner-Barry and Golombek, two of the players which I somehow ommitted in my initial series of posts about Bletchley Park back when I began this blog. They were each useful to the British endeavour in World War II, and along with that brilliant chess players. I was reminded of this fact when I recently had the opportunity to visit Bletchley (which I recommend,) and will seek to remedy that mistake slightly here.

In this game, Milner-Barry, out of the opening, develops a strong attack from nothing. I find it instructive, as Golombek’s moves do not appear initially poor.

Philip Stuart Milner-Barry–Harry Golombek Hastings 1939

Both competed alongside C. H. O’D. Alexander in the Chess Olympiad in September 1939, as war began to break out. They were quickly recruited for the Bletchley Park endeavour, with Milner-Barry recruiting Alexander shortly after. Golombek worked in the Hut which solved the German Naval Enigma, Hut 8, with Alexander.

Harry Golombek

Milner-Barry made a breakthrough in Hut 6, as he knew German, discovering ‘cribs’–repeated phrases which the German Army and Air Force Enigma operators used in their messages. The Hut could then use these commonly-used phrases to decrypt the settings used by the operators.

Philip Stuart Milner-Barry

Discussion thread: Thread 169482
Next post Wednesday the 27th.

Thanks for reading,

Posted to Hikaru Junction

Show Comments (3)
Comments (3)

  • Posted 1222 days 1 hour and 12 minutes ago | Edited
    @TetsuoKaga After 10…Bc5, 11. Be1 holds the weak dark squares which compose the Black attack. Then if White can make a trade (minors or majors) Black's pressure decreases, which is why I think it's holdable. 11…Nd4+ looks dangerous initially, but White can keep attacking the bishop, so the discoveries aren't dangerous. Sorry about the confusion; it's sometimes hard what to leave in and what to take out. Also, whether questions or compliments (Thanks @Liljo) the thread is a better place to discuss the blog.
  • Posted 1234 days 9 hours and 23 minutes ago
    On move 10 of the first fragment, you say that things are now approximately equal, but isn't black much better? All of his pieces are more active than white's, he dominates a file, his king is safer, his bishop isn't blocked in...if Jeremy Silman were dead, he would be rolling over in his grave.
  • Posted 1236 days 9 hours and 55 minutes ago
    Standard memberLiljo
    Very enjoyable! Thank you for your time and work, I REALLY enjoy the chess blogs on RHP.
    Last Post
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