An avid cigar smoker, Kieninger was nicknamed "Eisernen Schorsch" (roughly translated as "Iron Georgie") because of his fighting style. He won the German Chess Championship in 1937, 1940, and 1947. In 1950, FIDE awarded him the IM title.
His major openings were the Ruy Lopez and the French Defence (MacCutcheon Variation). The famous Kieninger Trap in the Budapest Gambit (1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.Bf4 Nc6 5.Nf3 Bb4+ 6.Nbd2 Qe7 7.a3 Ngxe5! 8.axb4?? Nd3#) is named after him (Borik 1986, p. 24).
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