Thoughts on pawn sacrifices in the Rubinstein Variation of the Four Knights Game

Sep 4, 2008, 12:00 AM |
8 | Opening Theory

The other day, I played this game on, and it was an interesting game.

It was the Rubinstein variation of the Four Knights Game, and on my seventh move, I chose to sacrifice the pawn on b2 and castle, hoping that I would be able to mount an attack to the black King. I was two pawns down after the 9th move, but had good compensation for it, I thought. Here is the game for you to have a look at:

This variation of the Rubinstein features the Chase Variation, as I like to call it. I know there is a similar version in the Alekhine's, which a friend of mine called the Chase Variation, and with a similar pattern here, that's what I am calling it myself, because I don't know the proper name for it, if it has one!

Anyway, I wondered what people think of the game after move 8. It was a highly tactical position, and it did give me a good attack. Apart from a few retreating moves, I felt I was able to control the game throughout, and I was dictating it. I was conscious of going into the endgame material down, however.

The game for me was lost for black when he played 20... Qf2, I think he overlooked that I could win a pawn. 21... c6 perhaps wasn't the best either, but I don't think in the long run there is much improvement for black.

I am most interested in the game after the eighth move. Was I justified in sacrificing the second pawn? What other continuations did I have from there? My plan in the game revolved around getting the Queen away from defence of the pinned piece (whatever it was) on e7.

Any help from this position after move 8 will be gratefully received.

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