Strategic Thinking (Part 2)
Following up on Tuesday’s blog article introducing this new series on strategy, we will consider in greater detail the two initial examples that I proposed. Decisions regarding deliberate exchanges such as 2-Rooks for Queen (and pawn), or 2-Minor pieces for Rook (and pawn) or 3-Minor pieces for Queen must never be taken lightly. Such exchanges should be considered strategic decisions.
While the material balance might be unchanged, the long term consequences of introducing assymetric piece configurations may be drastic, so much so that it could ultimately cost the game. This series will try to expound on general concepts related to these strategic decisiõns, with an eye towards finding practical guidelines for the reader to apply in his own games.
Sabadell 2011 Spanish Tch
This game demonstrated a very important dynamic factor to take into account before ever exchanging into a [Q vs 2R] configuration. You have to ask yourself “Does the side with the Queen have the initiative in the resulting position after I make the exchange?” As we just saw, the position at move 21 is a very nice looking position for the side with the two Rooks (static evaluation), but the awkward position of the White King combined with the pawn weakness on h3 allows Black to build up threats and force White on the defensive.
So it was bad call on White’s part to allow Black to give up his two Rooks for White’s Queen. He should have just played f3 and kept a small but longterm edge. In general, while the two Rooks more than often can dominate the Queen under ordinary circumstances, an active Queen can agilely attack multiple weaknesses and easily tie the Rooks down to passive defence. So watch out!
Candidates (08) 1974