SPRAGGETT ON CHESS
The examples below are all from master and grandmaster play! What better way to test your skill than by trying to solve real-life situations from top class tournament play! All examples are from this weekend’s Bundesliga. Good luck!
From the Bundesliga this past weekend. Position after White’s 26th move. We have a difficult to evaluate position with many hidden dynamic features. Black’s 2 passed pawns in the centre can easily be blockaded by White’s Bishop, and should he do so than he might be able to advance his King pawn and get some serious play.
So the initiative is of considerable importance in this position. The current World Junior Champion delved deep into the position and found a brilliant line that gives him both the better game and (more importantly) the initiative. CAN YOU FIND IT?
(Degree of difficulty: VERY tough )
Another position from the Bundesliga! Position after White’s 30th move. The White King is a bit isolated (not to say porked and pickled). BLACK TO PLAY AND WIN!
(Degree of difficulty: EASY)3.gm KOPYLOVgm NAIDITSCH
Bundesliga! Position after 21 moves. Clearly White is much better, but the position still requires some precision and elegance. Should White simply take the pawn on g7 (22.Qh8 and 23.Qg7) then Black can get considerable counterplay with …Rc8. Remember that the White Queenside is riddled with weaknesses. HOW DID WHITE WIN QUICKLY?(Degree of difficulty: moderate)4.gm NIKOLICABEL (elo 2450)
Bundesliga. Position after White’s 29th move (29.Ng2) White has been slowly outplayed. The Knight on e3 is very disconcerting for White and so it is natural that he wants to get rid of it. BUT, a lot is also happening on the other side of the board!
BLACK TO PLAY AND WIN!(Degree of difficulty: moderate)
Position after White’s 27th move (27.e3). A really smooth performance by the French superstar, who has slowly been outplaying White in a Queen’s Indian. The dynamic nature of the position (hanging pawns) results in a struggle for control. White , for his part, wants to tie down Black’s pieces to their defence; Black, on the contrary, is willing to part with the hanging pawns should it mean that he can get the initiative against the King.
HERE everything is going in Black’s favour, incuding the tactics!
BLACK PLAYED 27…Rxe3!
2. 30…Nf3!! (not the only way to win, but elegant) 31.PxN Be5! 32.f4 Rxf4!! 33.BxR BxB 34.Kh3 Qf3 35.Kh3 Kh6! White resigns
3. 22.Nxd5!! Bxd5 (taking with the Knight will just lose the Rook in the corner) 23.Rc7! it will be mate