Monday, June 6, 2011

Ignoring the Langeheinecke Pawn

The Langeheinecke Defense to the Blackmar-Diemer Gambit is named after a German doctor who lost a 47-move correspondence game to Diemer in 1940. In fact it is not so much a defense to the gambit — if that name is reserved for lines where the gambit is accepted—as it is a declination.

In the line's most direct form, after 1.d4 d5 2.e4 dxe4 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.f3, Black passes on the gambit pawn with 4...e3. White is not obliged to take the pawn immediately with 5.Bxe3, although he usually does. Scheerer, in his recent book on the BDG, doesn't consider games where White leaves the e-pawn alone for a while. But here are a couple of such games, including one played a couple of weeks ago, in which the passed pawn survives to the bitter end.