The Janowski Bishops

The Janowski Bishops‎

GM Julio_Becerra
20 | Chess Players

Dawid Janowski (25 May 1868–15 January 1927) was born in Wolkowysk, Poland, but soon relocated to France. His chess career began in the “Café de la Regence” in Paris, becoming one of the most brilliant players of his epoch!

He started his professional chess career in 1894 and in the late 1890s he received a steady stream of invitations to international events. He won tournaments in Monte Carlo 1901, Hanover 1902 and tied for first at Vienna 1902 and Barmen 1905, so he was established among the world's top half dozen players.

Janowski played three matches against Emanuel Lasker: two friendly matches in 1909 (+2 -2 and +1 =2 -7) and one match for the world chess championship in 1910 (=3 -8). The longer 1909 match has sometimes been called a world championship match but research by Edward Winter indicates that the title was not at stake.

Janowski played very quickly and was known as a sharp tactician who was devastating with the bishop pair! Capablanca annotated some Janowski games with great admiration, and said, "When in form is one of the most feared opponents who can exist." Capablanca noted that Janowski's greatest weakness as a player was in the endgame, and Janowski reportedly told him, "I detest the endgame!" It is said that he was very reluctant to give a draw!

Today I want to share with you two positions where the Janowski Bishops were simply killers!


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