In the thread 'Kasparov vs '70's Fischer' we are all having fun
speculating the what if's and how's of taking today's great players
and matching them against the GM's of the past.
Today it's Fischer v Kasparov.
An old theme that has appeared on many chess sites in the past.
Always good fun and the cases put forward range from the bizarrre
to the plausible. I'm not knocking it, indeed I will most likely go
back in and chip in a name or two.
This thread differs in as much I speculate what if there was no Paul Morphy.
What would have happened then?
I think you all know what a big PCM fan I am but I do wonder.
Did Paul Morphy stunt the growth of chess as we know it today.
Now I have your attention I shall continue.
The latter half of the 1850 was Morphy's time.
He came, he played and everyone learned.
The Morphy style and ideas were adopted, crafted and absorbed.
It was not until Steinitz change his style from 'AUstrian Morphy'
to the 'Deep Thinker' did chess take another giant leap.
But no Morphy. What would have happened?
I take you to India. The year is 1853.
The Scotsman John Cochrane and the Indian Bonnerjee Mohishunder
Played hundreds of games. Were it not for the Morphy hype
then these games would have become more famous than the
games of the La Bourdonnais - Mcdonnel matches.
As it was they were to a large extent ignored.
Most will be surprised at the game I'm about to show you.
It is quite unlike any game you will have seen from the Romantic era.
These two prouduced many many games like this.
If the Morphy void had been filled with players studying what
was going on with these two players. There would have been a massive leap.
Of course The Morphy ideas would still be there waiting to be discovered
but would they have been so succesful if the players of the day had been
grounded in what we call the modern style of play.
Their defensive technique would be quite high a fault often laid at the
feet of PCM's opponents.
Did we need the Romantic era?
You won't see many games played with that style today.
But in the following game, played 150 years ago you will see the
set up and ideas that are GM's tools today.
If the players of the day had studied them then instead of waiting
till 1920 would chess be 70 years ahead of what it is today.
Enjoy the game. It's not perfect.
What you will see the is the raw ideas that were shoved into the background
and ignored the moment Morphy sat down in the New York USA ch. 1957.
They stayed ignored for 60-70 years.
And no I have not pulled it from a modern tournament, this and
100's of games like it were being played in India by these two in the 1850's.
There are Benoni's. Pircs, Nimzo Indians, Grunfelds and King's Indans.
Some of these games are quite brilliant.
I've chosen this one because I have a good idea what is going on
and it has a Queen sac wrap up.
John Cochrane - Bonnerjee Mohishunder, Calcutta 1853.