Thursday, August 4, 2011

Summer Of (Chess) Love

Hi All,

It's nice and warm here in New Hampshire and it's time for the Summer of (Chess) love Carnival. I've quickly patched this together with help of Blue Devil Knight.
(this is a work in process)

Bright Knight presentsDan Heasman’s 7-10 Basic Tactics Books posted at Empirical Rabbit.

Heinz Z speaks to Truth

Mark Weeks presentsImprove Your Chess with the Master Game posted at Chess for All Ages.

Intermezzo presentsHebden Bridge Chess Club: Worst of British Chess Awards posted at Hebden Bridge Chess Club.

ChessAdmin presentsReflections on Training posted at Path to Chess Mastery.

Here is my favorite old time post from Nezh which speaks to a game that changed him

BDK, everyone favorite blogger , broke his cone of silence to submit this .

DK Transform is back and his blog is  always a delightful trip

Eburke has something we need to be reminded of how to win two basic rook endings   Lucena and Philidor:
Elubas looks at the Tactics Strategy connection

Espeago discusses something I should take to heart the importance of avoiding premature attacks

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Summer of (Chess) Love 2011 Carnival

Hey All,

It's hot as hell here in New Hampshire. The Hippie Bus has arrived and it's time to cellebrate the Summer of (Chess) Love 2011.

Feel free to link to your post about about chess at the following site  . It could be one you just wrote or an older one you are proud of. What ever you feel like don't worry...It's cool.

Prodigal Pawn did a far out job hosting July's carnival and can tell you what it's all about here.

Date for final submission is August 4th and I hope to post the carnival around the 7th.

Until then Peace , Love and Puka Shells.

 Jim Takchess

Monday, July 4, 2011

July Carnival

Prodigal Pawn has hosted the July Carnival and is found here.  TommyG has some nice post including some older links from the Knights Errants. Good Stuff.

I'll be hosting the August Carnival . More to Follow.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Nothing is more important that King Safety

A chessgame showing the dangers of grabbing material at the expense of King Safety and Development. A very interesting game from Attacking  Manual 2

Reminds me of the Traxler with the Knight out of play on the other side of the board.

The board view  is WTM # 13 and here the game is lost for black .

 This reminds me of something which I have been fighting during the past 10 years. I'm sure if my play reflected it I would improve 200 points.........

Dan Heisman tells you the two most important things you can learn in chess...........

What I am about to tell you may sound simple, but it is likely the most important piece of advice you will ever read in this column:

There are only two main principles in chess: safety and activity. Safety is much more important than anything else, and activity is much more important than anything but safety.

From Page 3 of his first novice nook.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Talking Traxler: Opening Theory :

Here is a variation which I could of reached in a Traxler game that I played last night and discussed with a friend. I figured it would be helpful to explore this further and write a post to document my thinking.

To reach this position, White had just played qf3 for defense purposes and threatening a black knight which was on e5. We discussed playing ng4 which we both  felt was good. However Fritz pointed to the move played here by Black Nf6 which removes the target.                                                                     

Here with WTM, his King and Queen are  awkwardly placed. If  he is greedy and takes the Rook out comes Nd4 an attack which gains a tempo. In the position above he can't move Ke2 due to the the Nd4+  royal fork.                                                      

The continuation of a game on with this line went 

Although after the line  1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. Ng5 Bc5 5. Nxf7 Bxf2+
6. Kxf2 Nxe4+ 7. Ke3 Black played Qh4. A more popular line is 7....Qe7.

Here is a representative game from that line

and similar games to that


Sunday, May 29, 2011

AAgaard Attacking Manuals Common Theme

Terry Francona, Manager of the Boston Red Sox, often talks about the importance of players having a respect for the game (Baseball) to show it through their actions on and off the field . His highest praise is when he says a player plays the game the right way. He consistently talks about this in press conferences and I'm sure this follows through in what he says to his team and individual players.  He is a class act. (yes, I am a Boston Red Sox Fan)

This reminds me of one reoccurring themes in Jacob Aagaard's Attacking Manual 1 & 2   , A short excerpt from the beginning of each book  appears at these links. 1 & 2 . I think of this theme as Respect for Chess , it's complexity and the difficulty to play it well. In these two books, he shows this and discusses this in many ways. I have found these ideas to be extremely well stated, interesting and good food for additional thinking. I have liberally quoted from his books in this blog. (The book quotes are italicized)

His following statement speaks to the trivialization of difficulty of the game among the general chess book reader and player.

I have included something I have not seen in other books. Before each chapter I have selected a number of diagrams representing positions from the coming chapter for you to consider, should you feel so inclined. It is my experience as a trainer, as well as someone who has had to work to improve, that “reading and nodding” (Daniel King) can create a false impression of how difficult chess really is. By thinking over these positions for up to 10 minutes each, you will have a first impression of what your intuition has to say about these positions, before I say what I think about them. Though we might never meet, this is a way for us to have a constructive dialogue.

I've noticed in general (but not universally) better players ( than I ) talk differently about the game and are more accepting of ambiguity. I've notice this in players I've talked to at tournaments as well as a friend I have analyzed with on (Thanks J!)  They are slower to make sweeping statements about a position and stay uncommitted longer to the value or discrediting a move or plan. I think Rowson has some interesting thinks to say about this trait of better players in his book Chess for Zebras.

Much in chess is unknown or unknowable or at least it can vary greatly from game to game.  Respect that these things are still being worked out and talking in ideas. As he wrote in the following.

Most often, decisions in attacking consist of such or similar trade-offs. This is what makes dynamic chess so interesting. Both players have a chance to win, as White is winning on points (static feature) and Black is winning on time (dynamic feature). This is also what makes dynamic chess so difficult. Though there are clear rules to follow, which can be translated into techniques,in the end all conclusions at the board will have to be guided by concrete calculation and gut feeling. Without the techniques, rules and so on that I will describe in these two books,you could be choosing the moves and ideas you want to calculate a little at random. After reading this book, hopefully your bias will be strongly towards the kind of decisions that are most commonly right.

Respect to play well requires not to fall to lazy thinking/slovenly play. (I'm guilty as charged , do as AAgaard says not as I do 8) ) He writes:
It is tempting to bring in the rook, but as we have just seen, we should never yield uncritically to the impulse of playing the most natural move without investigating whether or not it is also the best move. Chess is far too complicated to be played with a superficial approach.

He is also respectful to the readers needs and desire to improve and structures the book with this in mind.

Although I am a writer by nature, and place a high value on aesthetics, I am deeply aware that most readers will have picked up this book with the hope of improving their chess. My experiences and conversations with some of the best players in the World have strengthened my belief that it is very useful to solve exercises regularly if you want to improve your play. Although a well-written book can affect your play positively, it will do so much more if you are involved, rather than just reading it.

He is also respectful of other players and their play and speaks to their mistakes in a reasoned measured way.

Obviously those strong players had other ideas and somehow they did not work out, but we should also not overestimate the human ability or underestimate just how difficult chess is. We need all the help we can get to play this game just on a decent level. (a statement to which this blogger adds: Amen Brother!!!!)
and again:
During my research, I found it striking that serious mistakes were committed more often than not. If I had to guess, I would attribute the mistakes to the players’insufficient familiarity with the relevant patterns, not forgetting the simple fact that chess is just difficult!

Aagaard teaches mainly through game annotations and the selection is interesting in that most of these games have a poor move or two often on both sides of the board. Most games are recent and are played by GM's.

That being said he doesn't suffer fools lightly especially when it comes to the subject of chess commentary and the blind acceptance of computer analysis. In talking about chess coverage of his games and tournaments;

When I see my games annotated in newspapers or magazines by people who are not playing at the top level themselves,I meet the "Fritz Mentality". In it's simplicity its a kind of apex problem where people cannot understand that chess is very difficult as the understand it easily when they are looking at the tactical problems pointed out by Fritz

He then gives an example of a commentator disparaging Aagaard's opponents move as missing the obvious answer .An "obvious answer" that took 24 guess of audience in the commentary room.
An interesting side note to the respect for the difficulty of chess is that he doesn't lose sight that chess is a game not a computer exercise or a solved problem.
It is easy to get lulled into the sensation that chess is easy (rather than simple,which is something else)that chess should be played perfectly and other such nonsense.
Chess is very difficult and the chief task of the competitive player is to create problems for his opponent. The best problems are those that cannot be solved but before you create these you have to create problems that can. At best,very difficult ones. But which are they? How do you tell? Often by noticing that you do not know how to solve them either .

At the end of book 1,  as a preface to 50 study positions , he asks you to approach things in a special way.

It is for this reason, i suggest that you look at the next 50 exercises with the attitude of simply  thinking about them and enjoying the thought process. Chess is about thinking and improvements in chess come from improving the way you think. Do not test yourself as you should not try to reach a certain outcome but instead enjoy looking at these hopefully interesting positions.

I find it reassuring that a GrandMaster who won the British Championship, writes great books , plays and train at the high level acknowledges  that chess is a damn hard game and writes an advanced book (target audience 1700 +) that I can understand (somewhat) and enjoy.

I plan on working with this book further as well as study my more basic tactical themes and problems. The reality of my play is I'm still missing some basic tactics and need to build my base so that I have the chops to better use the ideas in this book.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Tal: He was a man in whose presence others sensed their mediocrity.

Kasparov talks about Tal : What an interesting article.

I worked a bit with Tal. Around 1980, he visited Baku, we played a couple of training games, and the chess contact wasn't lost until Tal's very last days. There was a blitz tournament in Moscow, one month before Tal's death. He looked horribly. But Tal was still Tal. In this blitz tournament, I lost my only game to him. I retaliated in the second round, but the fact was that until the very end, he still had this vision of games. He was the only one I knew who didn't calculate the variants, he saw them.

EK: Can you elaborate?

GK: We calculate: he does this then I do that. And Tal, through all the thick layers of variants, saw that around the 8th move, it will be so and so. Some people can see the mathematical formulae, they can imagine the whole picture instantly. An ordinary man has to calculate, to think this through, but they just see it all. It occurs in great musicians, great scientists. Tal was absolutely unique. His playing style was of course unrepeatable. I calculated the variants quickly enough, but these Tal insights were unique. He was a man in whose presence others sensed their mediocrity.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

KID Black to move

This is a challenging position from my game at playchess with an 1800 player . White is targeting the d-file and has it's eye on d7. The knight is a tempo away from a check and additional pieces on d7. I have discussed this position with a fellow player from and he challenged to come up with a workable defense.

I'm still thinking about this . It's very tricky. (here is the start)

Step One: Describe the position.

Material is even. The only thing off the board are the d-pawns. White: White is castled queenside and prepared to attack in the center and when available Kingside. Has a rook-queen battery starring down the d-file. His d5 knight can't be kicked by a pawns and can delivered a check on two squares. The f3 pawn is unprotected but not directly attacked and the e2 knight
is only protected only by the queen. White LS bishop is in a strong unblocked diagonal while the DS bishop is currently in a Queen Bishop battery and would benefit from more activity. His rooks are connected and desire open files.

White's Plans dependent on Blacks Move.

If white can't win get ahead in material with a combination in the center >attacking Nd7,Qd8. then f4 is in the air : looking to move the e3 pawn and opening up the f4 square for a piece and the attack. There will be a fight for the d7 knight which black needs to adjust for so he doesn't end up hurt in a combination.

Black Position and Plan.

White has an attacking position and black has plenty of work to do to cobble together a plan to defend and perhaps threaten to counterattack. What ever move black selects, it must effectively combat the following 4 follow-up moves by white bxd7, Nf6+, f4, Nc3 .

Black desires better coordination as of the back rank,Keeping black rooks from getting open files on the king-side, more active bishops, and exchanging off some of the white pieces and most importantly not losing material which is on the way if he doesn't play precisely.

Candidate Moves for Black:

I'm considering Ba6, Bb7,Nb8,Kh8, f6,f5, (more to follow plus editing)

I can eliminate Nb8. 1...Nb8?! 2. Bxc8 qxc8? 3. Ne7+ takes the queen
I can eliminate Ba6 1...Ba6 2. Nc3 and black has no escape route or defense for the knight on d7 :it loses a piece
I can eliminate Bb7 see Ba6

After looking at all the lines I could not find anything that didn't lose material. So I ran it through Fritz and that is the case . This position is plus 3 regardless of blacks move.

Endgame Position Black to Move and Draw (Corrected)

Hi All,

This is a correction of my previous post regarding Endgame which Chri (Blunderpuss) pointed out was in error. I referred to the wrong moves and the position is a little confusing . So I think it's better to correct it on a new post.

Note the board view here is from Blacks perspective. Black pawns are on h3 and g3, whites king is on g8 having just accompanied a pawn to be promoted (Queen no longer there,captured by black)

As Black, Down in material, this is a postion I was striving for in order to draw. Two connected pawns against 2 pieces.

This is a theoretical drawn position as confirmed by Fritz with Black.
In fact,two moves draw g2!! or Kh2!!.
218: Palmolive2010 - Takchess, Rated game, 35m + 0s 2011

Analysis by Fritz 12:

1. = (0.00): 61...Kh2 62.Rc6 g2 63.Rc2 Kg3 64.Rc1 Kh2 65.Rc2
2. = (0.00): 61...g2 62.Rc6 Kh2 63.Rc2 Kg3 64.Rc1 Kh2 65.Rc2

In the actual game, I played h2 ?? and lost.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Yes, I would like to talk (and think) like a chess book

You may think me silly but ........ Yes, I would like to talk (and think) like a chess book and specifically Jacob AAgaard Attacking Manual 1 and 2 .

I like how Jacob annotates a game. I figure the ability to better describe and think about chess positions and how to play goes hand in hand with getting better. ( that's my theory anyway). Less Fuzziness : More Precision. Chess annotation is an interesting form of literature and is fun when it's done right.

This space is a little clipboard for things I read. It's unlikely to have much meaning to anyone other than myself and may appear somewhat trite . In order for you to get something out of this, I'll direct you instead to the books themselves.

For my own benefit, I've divided things in chess snippets but them under general subheadings. (note I adding stuff I hear , read, absorb from a number of sources here but for now mainly AAgaard)


Rules are standard replies that can be used in most situations. Generalizations are the best way to build an awareness to reoccurring themes in chess.... to build intuition.
His principles are global principles not because they appear in all positions but because they appear in all kinds of positions.

The Difficulty of Chess

It's JA impression that reading and nodding gives a false impression as to how hard chess really is.


Work and thinking about positions in a chessbook is much more fruitful than the reading and nodding approach. (Daniel King)
Regarding the chess positions in his book. They are hard, Effort needs to be put in before new abilities can be taken out.

Evaluation of a position

Blacks position is pleasant
control over the center
completed his development
solid lead in development

Activity/Development and lack of it

The most energetic response.
allows black to build up an attacking position.
completed his development
neglected his development
black is getting his pieces to more and more attractive squares
the sacrifice has a drawback of not being supported by all the black's pieces.


take the pawn and hope for positional rewards later on.
unfortunately it costs a lot of time

Soundness ?!

Black decides to go for an idea that is more interesting than correct.


His argument goes like this:


gives away the rook in exchange for disturbing the development.


Saturday, May 7, 2011

7 factors to evaluate a position per Karpov book

1. Material relationship between the forces.
2. Presence of direct threats.
3. Position of the kings, their safety.
4. Possession of open lines.
5. Pawn structures, weak and strong squares.
6. The centre and space.
7. Development and the position of pieces.

As a result of comparing these elements the chess player makes a statistical evaluation of the position, selects a plan of action and begins searching for specific moves and calculating variations.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Endgame Position:Black to Move and Draw (Incorrect Post)

As Black,down in material I aimed to get this position with connected passed pawns.

It is a draw according to Fritz but a loss according to my play. Proper play is 1.... g7.

Monday, April 11, 2011

The Marshall Attack is to the Ruy

The Marshall Attack is to the Ruy as the Keres Attack is to the Scheveningen.

I can definitely see myself playing this.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Instructive how to play a game toward a endgame

This Onischuk game is a template game as to how a game is played toward a winning endgame. Worthy of future study!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

What are the ideas for Black in this position ?

Game found here .

Study after work. The squares covered by the pawn and bishop see the X's tell why this tactic works.

Lesson here: Clearly see and acknowledge what escape squares are covered. Good players think in terms of squares.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Notes on Specific SYT Problems for further study

I've created this post as a spot to record tactic numbers of 1-2 stars that I feel bear future review.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Endgame Fundamentals: White to Play and Draw

This month's carnival is being run by LEP who has one of the more fun chess blogs to follow. Here is a short but hopefully instructive post.

Here is an example from the old school book " How to Win in the Chess Endings" by I.A.Horowitz. If you were to point me to this position and told me White to move draws I wouldn't believe you. As the arrows implies, once White takes the rook (forced), black pawn is on his fourth square looking like he can Queen easily.

I'll leave it to you to work out the draw from here

Gelfand Bishops in Control

game found here . Interesting Mating net for further study .

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

51 to go

On problem 1074 of first circle. 51 to go.

These 3-4 star problems are just as much about planning as they are about tactics.

Spent some time playing on the internet this week instead of solving problems. I feel I'm playing at a reasonable level.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

A very cool interference position & Celebration

White to Move has no solution to effectively combat both Qxe4+ or Rxf1 + . I'm calculating out Qx e3 Rxf1+, Kg2 Qxe4,Qxe4 Rg1 / Qxe3 Qxe4(is this forced ?), rxf1 kg1
lines to see if they are losing to mate or just losing the queen initially.

An interesting position.

from Onos vs Yuchtman

Yes and Celebration! I hit tactic 1000 in my first circle of Sharpen Your Tactics (125 to go)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Observe First than Calculate!

This problem is not hard if one were first to determine that this is a Limited Mobility weakness vs an immediate checkmate problem. I missed this completely. The lesson is to observe before calculating!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Pattern Recognition 1: The King's Bowtie

When a Kings wears a pawn bowtie, he is vulnerable for a Sac on the diagonal to draw him out. Here Rook X f6 followed by Qh4+ and mate to follow.

Friday, February 25, 2011

A Big Think is needed

My impression of this position before a big think is it involves Bxg7 and N-f7 and Q-h3 and possibly a rook lift. Perhaps that advanced pawn will come in handy. Although starting with a pawn push might be interesting but I think unlikely. Unsure of move order I need to see if Q-h3 is too slow and I need to sac first due to black playing f6 first. RXd6 might be the appropriate first move....

It's feeling to me like a corridor mate after the smoke clears or a queen mate close in.

Qc6 from black looks likes trouble. I wonder is some point a rook blocks this check.

As I said, it needs a big think. hmmm.

I'm curious as to who may be following this. If you read this,please leave a hi or a short comment. Thanks

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Save to Study tonight 30 BTM

After short review, I'm not seeing a mate and think it played to win material. I need to think about it more.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Philidor save for study

The Attacking Manual 1 &2

Jacob Aagaard took up the big challenge of writing 2 books to cover the subject of Attacking Chess. This is meant to be a modern day Art of Attack in Chess.

I think it's somewhat above my rating and something to study deeper in the future. I've asked a number of local libraries to purchase it. He has a number of positions that he would like us to think about for 10-20 minutes for plans. One could easily spend a year working with these books.

Volume 1 is his ideas on the nature of dynamic chess while Volume 2 is more like the Art of Attack. Aagaard makes the point that the A or A descriptions are not clear.
I agree with him.

below are two excerpts from the publisher

Friday, February 18, 2011

BTM Euwe's Sharp Position

Working on this with BTM. I want to study this at length this weekend.

I'm thinking rf2 could lead to a perpetual check but need to think about this at length.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

If you are hoping to learn something

If you're hoping to learn something about tactics and chess from my blog......

I will respectfully redirect you to someone who knows what he is talking about.

Dan Heisman Archive of a decade of Novice Nook.

2.13 circle 1 640

2.14 circle 1 670

2.15 circle 1 700

2.16 circle 1 709

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Begin with an End in Mind- WTM

As Dan Heisman says Loose Pieces fall off. Here with White to Move, it's important to evaluate some options to see if you can grab the queen as well as preventing mate.

I am not only building patterns for a specific positions but for opportunity recognition in games. I'd hoping to further develop my tactical "spider" sense that there is a possibility of a tactic when a position arises.

Here Black's Queen is a clear target and worth some clock time to see if she call be caught.

Interestingly enough this position occurs when black is focusing on Queen to G2 for the mate.

589 Sharpen Your Tactics.
Game found here
Gelfand vs Kanstler 1987

Minor Piece Endgame Study

Capturing this for future study.

2.11 first circle problem 600

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Brain cramp

From today's puzzle of the day, I'm having a brain cramp on this though the options are pretty limited. I'm going to brute force the candidate moves and build an option tree tonight.

2.10 First Circle 582

Saturday, February 5, 2011


Hopefully, I will make up for lack of detailed interesting posts * by adding the puzzle of the day to my sidebar. It's a great site worthy of lengthy and daily visits. I enjoy the puzzle (published 12:00 am EST) and the game of the day and the comments from the community . Many of my sidebar links are to collections at this site.

I'm pleased with my initial circle and I'm at the first pass familiarity stage with many of the positions. I'm working on the complete problem set many of the harder set which I don't get pass the first move or two of the analysis. (I do try to follow as much of the continuation as I can)

* posts are left intentionally sparse so I can concentrate on building tactical circle momentum.

2-6 505 circle 1

2-7 526 c1

2-8 550 c1

2-9 563 Woot! Hit half way point on first circle #563 . problems getting progressively harder,combinations longer and variations more complex although there are still some 1&2 star problems in the mix.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Tactical Training is the Way

On problem 300, Sharpen your Tactics ,Circle 1 .
2.1.11 update problem 375
2.2.11 -400

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Yes.... I am doing tactics from Sharpen Your Tactics by Lein and Archangelsky. You can watch my progress on my sidebar. Problems range in difficulty from 1 star-easy 1 movers to 4 stars- hard. The beginning of the book is mainly 1 star problems which goes by quickly. ( I have done this section before).

Level 1 -

Fellow knights here is where I'm at

1st circle problem 142

I have decided that my circles will be problem 1 through 1125 and no mini-circles(subgroups)

Also check this sharp tactic out trying solving without peeking from move 29 with BTM. see position above.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

To Fill in later

Fill In Later

A -Tactics by Player Name

Adams Akopian Alapin Alekhine Alekseev Almasi Anand Anderssen Aronian Atkins Averbach Azmaiparashvili

Andersen-Kieseritzky London 1851 syt4 The immortal game

Hochberg-Averbakh Stockholm 1954 CM 22

Averbakh-Penrose London 1954 CM60 L4

Keres-Arlamovski Tscharno-Zdrog 195o syt6

B-C Tactics by Player Name

Bacrot Bareev Bauer Beliavsky Bird Blackburne Bogoljubov Botvinnik Bronstein Bu Buckle Burn
Capablanca Carlsen Charousek Chigorin

Honfi-Barzcay 1977 CM9

Furman-Batygin Kalinin 1950 cm55 l6
Bellon-G.Garcia Cienfuegos 1976 CM 34

Zaharov-Bobolovich Russia 1960 2 syt

Bogoljubov-Monticelli San Remo 1930 8 syt

Byrne-Tarjan Cleveland 1975 5 ecm

To Fill in later

Chess Master List

Adams Akopian Alapin Alekhine Alekseev Almasi Anand Anderssen Aronian Atkins Averbach Azmaiparashvili
Bacrot Bareev Bauer Beliavsky Bird Blackburne Bogoljubov Botvinnik Bronstein Bu Buckle Burn
Capablanca Carlsen Charousek Chigorin
de Labourdonnais de Vere Dobias Dominguez-Peres Dreev Dubois
Eichborn Eljanov Englisch Euwe
Fine Fischer Flohr
Gelfand Geller Georgiev Goetz Grischuk Ginsburg Gunsberg M Gurevich
Harikrishna Harrwitz Hirschfeld Inarkiev Ivanchuk
Jakovenko Janowski
Kamsky Karjakin Karpov Kasparov Kasimdzhanov Keres Khalifman Kolisch Korchnoi Kramnik Krasenkow
Landa Lange Larsen Lasker Lautier Leko Lipke Lipshutz
Mackenzie Malakhov Makovetz Mamedyarov Maroczy Marshall Mason McShane Milov Miroshnichenko Moehle Morozevich Morphy Movsesian
Naiditsch Najdorf Nakamura Neumann Ni Nikolic, Nimzovich , Nisipeanu
Paulsen Petrosian Petrov Piket Pillsbury J Polgar, Polugaevsky Ponomariov Portisch Potter
Radjabov Reshevsky Riemann Rosenthal Rubinstein Rublevsky
Sargissian Sasikiran Schlechter Schwarz Shirov Short Smirin
Smyslov Socko Sokolov Spassky Stein Steinitz Suhle Svidler
Tal Tarrasch Timman Topalov
Vallejo Pons Van Wely Volokitin Von Bardeleben vond der Lasa
Wang Weiss Winawer

D-F Tactics by Player Name

de Labourdonnais de Vere Dobias Dominguez-Peres Dreev Dubois
Eichborn Eljanov Englisch Euwe
Fine Fischer Flohr

Dunhaupt-Kunert corr 52-53 ecm 2

Zuckertort-Englisch London 1883 CM47 L10

Furman-Batygin Kalinin 1950 cm55 l6

G-J Tactics by Player Names

Gelfand Geller Georgiev Goetz Grischuk Ginsburg Gunsberg M Gurevich
Harikrishna Harrwitz Hirschfeld Inarkiev Ivanchuk
Jakovenko Janowski

Bellon-G.Garcia Cienfuegos 1976 CM 34

Goncharova-Radchenko Riga 1983 CM l2

Livshitz-Grossman Wroclaw 1979 Cm51 l3

Hochberg-Averbakh Stockholm 1954 CM 22

Honfi-Barzcay 1977 CM9

K Tactics by Players Name

Kamsky Karjakin Karpov Kasparov Kasimdzhanov Keres Khalifman Kolisch Korchnoi Kramnik Krasenko

Miller-Kearney NY 1935 11syt

Keres-Arlamovski Tscharno-Zdrog 195o syt6

Andersen-Kieseritzky London 1851 syt4 The immortal game

Koepaev-Vistaneckis ussr 1949 CM38

Muchloc-Kostic Koln 1912 syt9

Trifunovic-Kostic Yugoslavia Moscow 1956 cm 40

Kudari-Larsen Ottawa 1970 4 ecm

L-Q Tactics by Player Name

Landa Lange Larsen Lasker Lautier Leko Lipke Lipshutz
Mackenzie Malakhov Makovetz Mamedyarov Maroczy Marshall Mason McShane Milov Miroshnichenko Moehle Morozevich Morphy Movsesian
Naiditsch Najdorf Nakamura Neumann Ni Nikolic, Nimzovich , Nisipeanu
Paulsen Petrosian Petrov Piket Pillsbury J Polgar, Polugaevsky Ponomariov Portisch Potter

Kudari-Larsen Ottawa 1970 4 ecm

Tikan-Peebo Tartu 1977 CM58 l2

Averbakh-Penrose London 1954 CM60 L4

Puschman-Lengyel Hungry 71 CM48 L10

Lipschutz-Schallopp London 1886 3 ecm

Livshitz-Grossman Wroclaw 1979 Cm51 l3

Volkevich-Lyskov Moscow 1958 Cm34 L4

Miller-Kearney NY 1935 11syt

Bogoljubov-Monticelli San Remo 1930 8 syt

Muchlok- Kostic Koln 1912 9syt

Yusupov-Nogueiras Montpelier 1985 syt 15

Petrosian-Simagin Moscow 1956 cm25

Poldepor-Stoudtman Pepic 1980 10syt

R-T Tactics by Player Name

Radjabov Reshevsky Riemann Rosenthal Rubinstein Rublevsky
Sargissian Sasikiran Schlechter Schwarz Shirov Short Smirin
Smyslov Socko Sokolov Spassky Stein Steinitz Suhle Svidler
Tal Tarrasch Timman Topalov

Goncharova-Radchenko Riga 1983 CM l2

Reti-Tartakover Vienna 1910 syt13

Smyslov-Szabo Hastings 4-55 CM49 L2

Smyslov-Szabo Hastings 4-55 CM49 L2

Vaslukov-Taimanov usssr 1965 cm61 l4

Tikan-Peebo Tartu 1977 CM58 l2

Trifunovic-Kostic Yugoslavia Moscow 1956 cm 40

Rubinstein-Vidmar Berlin 1918 syt 12

Lipschutz-Schallopp London 1886 ecm 3

Petrosian-Simagin Moscow 1956 cm25

Tolush-Simagin 1952 1 ecm

Steinitz-Schlesser 1863 7 syt

Poldepor-Stoudtman Pepic 1980 10syt

Reti-Tartakover Vienna 1910 syt13

Byrne-Tarjan Cleveland 1975 5 ecm

Tolush-Simagin 1952 1 ecm

U-Z Tactics by Player Name

Vallejo Pons Van Wely Volokitin Von Bardeleben vond der Lasa
Wang Weiss Winawer

Vaslukov-Taimanov usssr 1965 cm61 l4

Veizai-Hodja Albania 1954 Cm56 L4

Koepaev-Vistaneckis ussr 1949 CM38

Rubinstein-Vidmar Berlin 1918 syt 12

Volkevich-Lyskov Moscow 1958 Cm34 L4

Yusupov-Nogueiras Montpelier 1985 syt 15

Zaharov-Bobolovich Russia 1960 2 syt

Zuckertort-Englisch London 1883 CM47 L10

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Boleslavsky vs Lisitsin

I have just memorized this game which is the first supplementary game in The Best Lessons of a Chess Coach in chapter one.

It had a very similar theme as the Smyslov game a killer Knight outpost on d5. Boleslavsky created the conditions for this outpost with a brilliant c4 pawn sac to create a bishop trade. He then went on to remove the Knight on f6 the last defender of the d5 square. I find it interesting that both games had the opponent trade knights as the first piece exchange and toward the end each side had a minor piece, 2 rooks and a queen. The outpost knight held the power in each game.

Note to self: Be mindful once a knight is traded for outpost opportunities.

Another interesting move was the quiet 21 Qe2 followed by 22 Qf1 preventing a future blockade by Blacks queen on the H file. This allows for the pawn storm sequence beginning with 23 g3. The knight on d5 at times keeps black bishop on f8 to prevent e7 check as well as the queen can never take on h5 due to f6 check & fork.

Kingcrusher did a nice analysis of this game on youtube . The game can be replayed here at playchess .

Sunday, January 16, 2011


On the most direct level, Yermolinsky explains how to improve your chess, then shows in detail exactly how he did it himself. The main idea is not very mysterious: take Botvinnik's advice, analyze each and every game you play, and be sure that you do so thoroughly and without prejudice.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Friday, January 7, 2011

A Most Instructive Instructive Game-Smyslov-Rudakovsky 1945

A View from the Bunker, Black to Move

Here's a game which Smyslov played against Rudakovsky in the 1945 USSR championship tournament. Found here

This has appeared in many chess books including:
Silman's Re-access your Chess
Pachman's Chess Strategy
Chernev's Most Instructive Games
Best Lessons of a Chess Coach.(Chapter 1)
[Note: I'm currently working through this book]

This game appears to be the 1940's equivalent of the Opera Game. An appealing entertaining and instructive game where each move of the winner is purposeful, effective and ends with a great mating combination. It is game most used when the author wants to show an example of a strong Knight Outpost that dominates the game. It illustrates as well the value of coordination and superior position where sides of equal material can be greatly different strengths. Poor Rudakovsky is unable to accomplish anything in this game and his Queen sits helplessly watching a mating net from the opposite side of the board.

When I have a good classic instructive game that I study, I memorize it. I do this by breaking the game in phases and creating a narrative. I find the handful of games that are considered to be the classics have a nice entertaining story that runs through them.

It starts off with Basic Sicilian Scheveningen Stuff

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 d6

Both Sides rush to King Safety

6. Be2 Be7 7. O-O O-O

Get out those pieces

8. Be3 Nc6(a threat forms)

A weakness is not a weakness if it cannot be exploited! f4 prepares for a King-side attack.

9. f4 {I want to play this move more in a number of openings}

Black moves big gun to play on the Queen side

Interesting you have the same position in Karpov-Spassky game here at whites move 9 (look at the winning combination!)

9 .... Qc7

White Queen positions for protection on Queen side with a quick route to King side (THE MOVE per Weeramantry)

10. Qe1 !

Black uses a tactic to gain space

10..... Nxd4 11. Bxd4 e5

White declines the pawn take since restricting Blacks Space is a major goal. Why free up the bishop and spread out his pawns ?

White develops his bishop and black tries to develop his bishop
12. Be3 Be6

Kick that Bishop!

13. f5

Forces Trade

13.... Bc4 14. Bxc4 Qxc4

White quickly enacts a plan to create a unbreachable Nd5 Outpost

15. Bg5 Rfe8(protects bishop but that's not what white is after)

Removal of the last guard of d5 and occupation

16. Bxf6 Bxf6 17. Nd5

Black runs Bishop to Safety

17 ..Bd8

Smyslov repairs a weakness before starting his attack

18. c3

Black's mysterious pawn move (?)

18 .... b5

Kick that Queen!

19. b3

I'll check you because I can

19..... Qc5+ 20. Kh1

Prepares a Qxc3 attack


Rook Lift that protects and prepares a kingside attack

21. Rf3 !

Get in the bunker(f6 would be a better)

21.... Kh8

Kamikaze Pawn

22. f6! gxf6

Build the attack and threaten an eventual QXh7 mate

23. Qh4

Protects as best he can

23... Rg8

White threatens Qxh7 mate and black defends

24. Nxf6 Rg7

White prepares a deflection mate Black fights back

25. Rg3 Bxf6

Queen pins rook and prepares for the kill

26. Qxf6

Black tries to support the now pinned rook

26. Rcg8

Smyslov brings fight to new front on the way to back rank tactics

27. Rd1

Rudakovsky has run out of moves


Chess is a cruel game; replace the pinned rook with another one
28. Rxg7 Rxg7

29. Rxd5 and the game is over with Blacks Queen sitting on the checking square totally out of the game unable to defend or get a tempo to take advantage of whites back rank

Also: here is my game collection page of games worth remembering.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Opening Theory - The Marshall Attack - BTM

I like to play the Marshall Attack as Black against the Ruy. Given the well travelled path of opening theory here I know the line to about move 15. I hope to learn more and be able to win occasionally and force a draw when I need to. It's an attacking line but against proper play most likely a draw.

Here against Sliuszicht 1697 on Playchess. BTM. ( I played Bd7 and eventually lost)
I would like to play the thematic F5. Charge ! Fight to Open lines .
f4! f5, Bxf5 gxf5, Rook Lift Re6 and black is better after the bishop sac.

Monday, January 3, 2011

1/1/2011 Herb Healy Tournament

Here I am wearing the blue hat sitting next to the scholar and gentleman :George the Blunderprone. (Please note: Despite the photographic evidence above, I'm not asleep ?!)

This is my third New Years day tournament at the BCC and was my favorite. All games were 1 e4 8),openings I was comfortable with and hard fought .
I played
1) a King's Gambit as White ( lost)
2) a Reti Gambit as White against the French (won)
3) a Scotch Gambit as Black (lost)
4) a 2 Knights as Black (lost) (almost a Traxler but went 0-0 0-0)

All interesting games and I didn't hang any pieces. I consider this a major accomplishment given my two year hiatus.

Games 3 & 4 I was hanging on for my life through most of it.

Game 3 I accidently plopped down my bishop on an unintended square (an across the board mouse slip)
Game 4 I believe I should of kicked the G5 Knight by h6 but never played it.

I'm rated at the time I let my USCF lapse under 11oo ..... So I was happy with my play against the 4 players all who were over 1600. (two of them over 1800)

A nice informal get together with enjoyable people.