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andytoh
22-03-2007, 09:34 AM
Greetings. I'm a 2300 player and would like to present you with a strategic chess puzzle.

White to move. Find the best plan and move for White in the position below.

If you are stuck. The solution is one of the three plans in the next post. My next post after that explains which plan is best, and why the others are inferior. Good luck.

andytoh
22-03-2007, 09:35 AM
[Post deleted - plagiarised. A copy has been retained for anyone who wishes to check it - KB]

andytoh
22-03-2007, 01:57 PM
I will give a full detailed solution tomorrow, explaining strategically while two of the above plans are inferior and why the correct plan is best, together with the (annotated) game continuation to convince you. The day after that, I will post another strategic puzzle. In the meantime, try to solve the puzzle!

WhiteElephant
22-03-2007, 03:53 PM
Thanks for posting this interesting position. From my cursory reading, all 3 plans sound good! Will give it some more thought.

Sunshine
22-03-2007, 04:49 PM
I would go with Option 2.

Desmond
22-03-2007, 05:18 PM
if Qd3 then I would prefer to play ...f6 over ...a4

andytoh
22-03-2007, 09:07 PM
Well, I hope you enjoyed the puzzle. Here is the full solution:

[Post deleted - plagiarised. A copy has been retained for anyone who wishes to check it - KB]

New puzzle tomorrow!

Desmond
22-03-2007, 09:18 PM
Well, I hope you enjoyed the puzzle. I certainly did, thank you. Could I suggest that you make use of the PGN viewer for the next one?

andytoh
22-03-2007, 09:43 PM
I certainly did, thank you. Could I suggest that you make use of the PGN viewer for the next one?
Will do.

Southpaw Jim
22-03-2007, 09:51 PM
Here are the calculations you should have made in assessing Plan C:
17.Ba4 Rfb8

Is there anything wrong with 17...Nh6, intending Nf5?


New puzzle tomorrow!

Yes please :)

Axiom
22-03-2007, 09:55 PM
i too ,intuitively went with plan C ,regrettably did not post.........but heartened to see that as the solution...........a very instructional,highly informative problem ,andytoh,....a very big thankyou to you :clap: :clap: :clap:

Kevin Bonham
23-03-2007, 12:08 AM
Is there anything wrong with 17...Nh6, intending Nf5?

I also think this is worth a try but since black is unable to prevent the eventual doubling of his c-pawns he should still ultimately be somewhat worse. Maybe he will then get some play down the half-open b-file but ultimately it isn't looking all that flash.

Thanks andy for posting the position; glad to have you with us.

andytoh
23-03-2007, 06:56 AM
White to move. Black has just played 26...Kf7 (from g8).

This time, YOU try to come up with the plan first before I post the three plans to choose from.

Desmond
23-03-2007, 07:50 AM
Would probably try to swap off my bad bishop with 1.Bd2 and if 1...Ra8 2.Ra1 intending Ba5

Southpaw Jim
23-03-2007, 09:54 AM
Bd2 seems the most logical start, to take advantage of the threat of Nxd6! It follows that 1...d5, 2.Nec5. After that, I'm not sure - I'd like to do something about my 2 isolated pawns but not sure how I'd go about it.

For some reason I feel that, following this, white's best chances lie in a k-side expansion while taking advantage of the vacated e-file, but I'm not very strong at analysing deeply.

andytoh
23-03-2007, 12:59 PM
Choose the best plan.

[Post deleted - suspected plagiarised. A copy has been retained for anyone wishing to check it - KB]

Southpaw Jim
23-03-2007, 01:29 PM
On the basis of those plans and my previous post, I think I prefer Plan C :)

Axiom
23-03-2007, 03:50 PM
Yes i wouldnt want black sticking his knight on f5,so g4 is good,with further expanding and supporting kside pawn moves to follow,BUT Nf5 is not immediate threat due to c6 pawn, and instinctively i want to double rooks on c file .

........i must get in quicker next time, before i see the 3 plans.
thanks again Andytoh, highly instructional.

andytoh
24-03-2007, 10:03 AM
To find the correct plan, you needed to fully understand the needs of Black's position and what his plan was. His previous move 26...Kg8-f7 should have alerted you. The plans that people posted didn't seem to take into consideration Black's needs and what he plan was. Perhaps you did, but then you should have realized the that Plans B and C pretty much ignored Black's plan. You must read why Plans B and C were wrong to further appreciate plan A. So here we go.

[Solution deleted - suspected plagiarised. A copy has been retained for anyone wishing to check it - KB]

Criticisms of my explanations are welcome (no one is perfect, but I try my best).

andytoh
24-03-2007, 10:58 PM
And here is the game continuation to convince you fully of the strength of Plan A:

Lasker - Steinitz
Moscow, 1896

[Analysis deleted - suspected plagiarised. A copy has been retained for anyone wishing to check it - KB]

Good luck on my next puzzle.

Axiom
24-03-2007, 11:26 PM
Brilliant Andytoh, Beautiful.

Kevin Bonham
25-03-2007, 12:55 AM
Greetings. I'm a 2300 player

What rating system, if you don't mind me asking? I'm interested in parity or otherwise between different rating systems.

andytoh
25-03-2007, 01:03 AM
At playchess.com. I don't play over the board anymore.

Kevin Bonham
25-03-2007, 01:32 AM
At playchess.com. I don't play over the board anymore.

OK. I'm sure you'd be aware that "online ratings" are often 200-300 points overrated and in some very unusual cases up to around 1050 points out. It's much better to use a real OTB rating (I assume you've had one?) to describe your playing strength, especially if you were writing a book, for example.

andytoh
25-03-2007, 01:52 AM
My last OTB rating was 1950 several years ago, and I believe I have improved alot since then (my rating was climbing steadily at the time). I stopped playing over the board because I found online chess to be much more convenient and efficient. My guess is that my OTB rating now would be around 2100, perhaps higher (?). Besides, as you can tell, I have become more interested in chess analysis than competition.

andytoh
25-03-2007, 03:42 AM
Black to move. Good luck.

andytoh
25-03-2007, 06:56 AM
Choose the best plan.

[Post deleted - suspected plagiarised. A copy has been retained for anyone wishing to check it - KB]

Desmond
25-03-2007, 07:56 AM
[Event Summer Swiss]
[Site Brisbane Chess Club]
[Date "2004.03.03"]
[Round "2"]
[White Ian Rogers]
[Black Howard]

rn1q1rk1/pb3pp1/Np3n2/4p2p/3P3R/2PQPN1n/2B2PBP/RNR2RK1 w - - 0 1Did you give a Ian 2 rooks head start? That was very sporting of you!

WhiteElephant
25-03-2007, 10:05 AM
Well my instincts were correct with the first 2 puzzles but I was too chicken to post the answer. So I'll have a go at number 3. I would go with Plan B.

andytoh
25-03-2007, 10:42 AM
Well my instincts were correct with the first 2 puzzles but I was too chicken to post the answer.
Please don't be afraid to post your answers. The more I see the more I'll be encouraged to post more puzzles. Also, don't feel bad if you chose a plan that later turned out to be a bad choice, because I am admittedly trying to sell all three plans! ;)

andytoh
25-03-2007, 11:25 AM
Kevin Bonham, from reading other threads I know you are an excellent annotator. Your opinions of the three plans would be of great interest (I might have missed some key points and so could learn from you).

andytoh
25-03-2007, 12:33 PM
I didn't know how to answer with a position with 4 Rooks vs. 2 Rooks. If you give me a more realistic position, I can give you my suggestion through private message.

andytoh
25-03-2007, 01:02 PM
I've never played chess with 4 Rooks vs. 2 Rooks before. Now I've lost the mood. Here's my solution, and good-bye.

[Solution deleted - suspected plagiarised. A copy has been retained for anyone wishing to check it - KB]

Game continuation:

Lamon - Weeramantry,
Jacksonville 1990

[Analysis deleted - suspected plagiarised. A copy has been retained for anyone wishing to check it - KB]

Aaron Guthrie
25-03-2007, 02:25 PM
[Event Summer Swiss]
[Site Brisbane Chess Club]
[Date "2004.03.03"]
[Round "2"]
[White Ian Rogers]
[Black Howard]

rn1q1rk1/pb3pp1/Np3n2/4p2p/3P3R/2PQPN1n/2B2PBP/RNR2RK1 w - - 0 1White has 4 promoted pieces (1 Bishop, 1 Knight, 2 Rooks), and has only lost 3 pawns, thus it is an illegal position.

Axiom
25-03-2007, 04:27 PM
HI ANDYTOH, do you have a fide rating or just national rating?
Thankyou,
Axiom

Kevin Bonham
25-03-2007, 05:49 PM
Besides, as you can tell, I have become more interested in chess analysis

Your own or other people's? At a very few points you note analysis by Fine or Vukovic, but some of these are very well known games, are you saying you just sat down and worked all the rest out by yourself?

I would also be interested to know where your OTB rating comes from.

WhiteElephant
25-03-2007, 07:53 PM
Wow, this is unbelievable. Andy has started one most interesting threads I've read in the past 2 years on ChessChat and for his trouble he gets his credibility questioned, cops a spray, etc. Come on!

Andy, please continue posting, I've found the puzzles very interesting and educational.

Desmond
25-03-2007, 08:04 PM
Hi Andy,

As a 2300 player, I expect that you would beat someone like me close to 100% of the time, but you would in turn lose to a grandmaster most of the time. Would you say that it is strategic decisions like those you have posed here that makes the difference between yourself and a GM, or are there other considerations?

Kevin Bonham
25-03-2007, 10:02 PM
Some comments on the Lasker-Steinitz "solution":

Firstly, why are the move numbers so frequently wrong in the analysis? It looks like several of the answers have been based on an alternative writeup of the game where the position starts from about move 15. The numbers should be consistent with the actual move numbers or else all numbers should start from the same position.

The solution itself in some places looks like annotation-by-result (this means the moves by the winner are assumed correct because the winner later won) and the game continuation doesn't convince me at all of the strength of plan A, or even that White has that crash-hot a position.

Steinitz's 29...Bb6 is obviously shortsighted in retrospect - and possibly a critical error - because White gains tempo with 30.Bf4 when ...Bc7 is forced and Black has spent two moves doing nothing while White's pieces are more aggressively placed. While 29...Nd5 (not 14...Nd5, see above) indeed loses a pawn to 30.Bxh6, Black has heaps of other moves.

Fine's ...Nf5 is mentioned but what does white do to try to gain an advantage if Black simply plays 29....Rf8 preparing 30....Nd5 by removing the mate threat in the 29...Nd5? 30.Bxh6! line? (This has the apparent advantage over Fine's ....Nf5 that the N is no longer sidetracked to f5 and therefore guards against Bb4.) The "solution" discusses tactical threats on the e-file after shifting the N off g6 presumably so that the N on e7 is no longer defended, but by what token is the N on e7 going to stay there for any length of time, rather than going to the good square d5 where it guards e7, including if necessary for the other knight? It is not obvious to me how white proceeds. Yes White has more active pieces, yes Black's pawns are somewhat vulnerable to open lines, but also White has two isolated pawns and in trying to take action on the e-file White has actually moved away from pressuring the pawns onto a line where White appears to have nothing concrete unless Black falls tactical cheapos. Any comments?

Basil
26-03-2007, 03:26 AM
Andy, there were some inaccuracies in your first post. I've fixed them for you.


Greetings. I'm a fraud and would like to present you with someone else's strategic chess puzzle.

If you are stuck, look in the book like I did. The solution is one of the three plans in the next post. My next post after that is lifted directly from the book and explains which plan is best, and why the others are inferior.

Basil
26-03-2007, 03:31 AM
Hey Andy

How about I go to all the chess bulletin boards on which you are posting your dribble and let the people know that you are a plagiarising fraud, or if not, very loose with the truth.

How about that, eh? Then you'd have to come up with another ridiculous plan to waste your life with.

Is there any reason why won't answer a straight question? You know what that's a sign of, don't you? A lying little weasel.

Basil
26-03-2007, 03:42 AM
Andy

It's time to leave the building. Do you want to go like in my pic or do you want to slink off. Perhaps a parachute jump with a twist?

The last time we ran one of you anonymous fools off the board, he displayed the same traits as you with the concocted back story:

-- high rating (why can't you people be average?)
-- limited back story (try and work harder on the back story, next time)
-- same equanimity in the face of insults, and then instant crack

The book I reckon you should write, which would be much more interesting is; Motivations of an Anonymous Fool to Live out a Walter Mitty Fantasy on a Bulletin Board. Let's face it - it's pretty sad when written down like that.

andytoh
26-03-2007, 04:09 AM
Andy, there were some inaccuracies in your first post. I've fixed them for you.


Quote:
Originally Posted by andytoh
Greetings. I'm a fraud and would like to present you with someone else's strategic chess puzzle.

If you are stuck, look in the book like I did. The solution is one of the three plans in the next post. My next post after that is lifted directly from the book and explains which plan is best, and why the others are inferior.

You are totally wrong. There is currently no chess book out there that has puzzles and solutions as thoroughly elaborated as my puzzles. I know, I looked for them. This is the main reason why I'm writing it up, because I can't find books like this so I figure I have to do it myself. The writing and full elaboration is done by me! Since I'm not a titled player, I cannot publish my work (I never wanted to anyway), so I thought I would just share my passion with you guys. Here's my private message that I sent to Kevin Bonham a couple of hours before you posted your unwarranted insults:

"Kevin, I know you are an excellent annotator and I have faith in your comments. I believe I'm a strong chess player too, but I'm not into competition anymore because of all the stress and the cheating I've observed in over-the-board play. As a result, about 10 years ago, I continued my passion for chess simply by studying games and analyzing positions.

I am much more into chess analysis than playing chess and so the positions I create my puzzles from do arise from games that have already been analyzed by grandmasters. However, I believe that their annotations are quite brief so I naturally want to elaborate in my own way through these puzzles. The positions I've chosen for my puzzles are intentionally very balanced positions where theoretically the game should end up in a draw with best play from both sides. So the plan I've chosen is the one played in the game because I believe it is the most promising, though not necessarily winning (because there is no clear-winning plan).

I do not mind continuing to give more of my puzzles becaue I am so passionate about them. However, as you stated, I do make mistakes in my solutions, so it would be nice to hear your thoughts about the 3 plans I pose to help make my solutions more accurate for the others to learn from.

Having said this, here is my next puzzle. I am hoping that you can tell me what you think of the 3 plans before I post my solution (which I've already written up in great detail). If you want it, I will also give you the actual game continuation so that you will also be more confident in your assessment of the "best" plan and the two "inferior" plans. I've attached the position to your personal email (since I can't attach here)
and here are the 3 plans (White to move):

etc..."

I thought I could share my passion with other chess lovers, but I guess to avoid haters like you I should just keep it to myself in my own computer.

Kevin Bonham
26-03-2007, 04:20 AM
You are totally wrong. There is currently no chess book that has puzzles and solutions as fully described as my work.

Oh, so Bellin and Ponzetto is a hovercraft-racing manual, is it?

We have real 2100s-2300s on this site, even the odd stray IM and GM, and several players here, especially but not only the strong ones, figured out what you were doing. Material in your first puzzle has been identified as verbatim lifted and we suspect the others are the same. There's nothing wrong with presenting other people's puzzles (and indeed several posters here were very much enjoying the puzzles; shame you were passing them off as yours when they were not), but if so you must do it with their permission and indicate the source and the permission in your post. We cannot have plagiarised material appearing here in blatant breach of copyright laws. I will have to soon remove several of your posts (will leave them up just briefly so others can see and check for themselves if desired that they are plagiarised), but will reinstate any that you can satisfy me are *not* at least partly plagiarised.

I don't believe a word of your stuff about your rating either. I believe your real playing strength to be not more than 1300.

andytoh
26-03-2007, 04:33 AM
Material in your first puzzle has been identified as verbatim lifted and we suspect the others are the same.
Thanks for the complement, because the others were really written by me (notice I give about twice as much explanation than Bellin and Ponzetto in my second and third puzzles?), as would have been all the others after that.

Kevin Bonham
26-03-2007, 05:00 AM
Thanks for the complement, because the others were really written by me, as would have been all the others after that.

On a similar note, did you know that last week I gave a clock simul (guillotine of course!) against Kasparov, Kramnik, Karpov, Judith Polgar, Leko, PhilD707, Petrosian via seance and Bobby Fischer? I checkmated all of them except for Bobby (he got a tad paranoid about my draw offer and jumped out the window screaming something about Jews), and Phil who lost on time on move 13 because he was crawling 'round the carpet sniffing everybody's feet in the hope of finding something to be offended by. True, I was lucky, Leko and Polgar were too busy having sexy makeouts in the corner and got distracted and walked into swindles while they were winning, and I bopped Gazza over the head with a chessboard and concussed him while no-one was looking, but really, what can you say? We great players make our own luck. :lol:

Come off it buster, the stylistic similarities are blatant, and your story's failed to wash on so many levels already no-one will believe a thing you say.

Basil
26-03-2007, 05:07 AM
I gave a clock simul (guillotine of course!) against Kasparov, Kramnik, Karpov, Judith Polgar, Leko, PhilD707, Petrosian via seance and Bobby Fischer?...

30 HCDs !

andytoh
26-03-2007, 05:14 AM
Material in your first puzzle has been identified as verbatim lifted and we suspect the others are the same.
Ok, I'll leave, but at least you have proven to ME that I can analyze and explain as well as Bellin and Ponzetto, because I know that I wrote the explanations after the first puzzle myself.

Basil
26-03-2007, 05:28 AM
You are totally wrong.
No, I was totally right.


There is currently no chess book out there that has puzzles and solutions as thoroughly elaborated as my puzzles.
Yes there is. A number of people on this site have the same book you're quoting from!


The writing and full elaboration is done by me!
Oooooh! One of the biggest porkies. You ARE as bad as *******! Mazing!


Since I'm not a titled player, I cannot publish my work
Clutches sides ...


... a couple of hours before you posted your unwarranted insults
Excuse me, but all of my insults have been warranted.


... because of all the stress and the cheating I've observed
Butter. Mouth. Melt.


I create my puzzles from do arise from games that have already been analyzed by grandmasters
I don't think you understand that we are looking at the same book as you are reproducing.


I...but I guess to avoid haters like you I should just keep it to myself in my own computer.Am I a hater? :P

Kevin Bonham
26-03-2007, 05:32 AM
Ok, I'll leave, but at least you have proven to ME that I can analyze as well as Bellin and Ponzetto, because I know that I wrote the explanations after the first one myself.

I notice that on chessexchange you wrote:


Only the first one is from a book, in order to make sure the opening post is good. You can't find my other puzzles in that book can you? That's because the others are written by me! Notice I give about twice as much explanation than Bellin and Ponzetto in my second and third puzzles?

If you want, I'll keep my own puzzles to myself, but the ones I'm writing now are really by me.

Actually the reason our source didn't find the other puzzles in B+P is because he only has the earlier first edition; there was a second one 12 years later which we're yet to check to confirm. But if you were anywhere near as strong or as good an analyst as the author of that stuff, you would be able to comment intelligently on lines supplied by other players instead of giving generic non-analytic comments (based on whether they were "right" or not) and then providing your solutions.

Kevin Bonham
26-03-2007, 05:47 AM
By the way, it looks from these puzzles that the B+P book is a really good one, and anyone mourning the loss of the puzzles after the exposure of our plagiarist ought to see if they can get their hands on a copy. I'm rather keen to get one myself sometime. Amazon reviews here (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/customer-reviews/0020280904/ref=cm_cr_dp_pt/002-4798089-7461611?ie=UTF8&n=283155&s=books)

andytoh
26-03-2007, 05:52 AM
Actually the reason our source didn't find the other puzzles in B+P is because he only has the earlier first edition; there was a second one 12 years later which we're yet to check to confirm.
Ah ha! So you just admitted that my 2nd and 3rd puzzle is as good as the one's from Bellin and Ponzetto's book. Now I feel really good.

The more you check where the 2nd and 3rd puzzle came from, the better I will feel about my ability. So keep checking! :P

Basil
26-03-2007, 05:56 AM
Ok, I'll leave...
This is where [Alex] has the wood on you. He wouldn't leave. He had to be physically locked out ... and even then he snuck back a few times. So while your hide is quite remarkable, you can't have gold.

If you're interested in developing your repertoire in such lost positions, The [Alex] continuation which gives reasonable chances, is to start talking about something else - preferably even more preposterous than the topic you're seeking to avoid!

Garrett
26-03-2007, 07:21 AM
(edit) deleted as off topic and not really that funny.

Southpaw Jim
26-03-2007, 08:45 AM
and Phil who lost on time on move 13 because he was crawling 'round the carpet sniffing everybody's feet in the hope of finding something to be offended by

ROTFLMAO :lol:

WhiteElephant
26-03-2007, 09:53 AM
Andy, I was your biggest supporter here but you've lost me now as well, as some of your explanations clearly don't make sense.

Why don't you start again - introduce yourself, tell us your real rating, tell us more about the book as it sounds excellent and post some more puzzles if you like.

WhiteElephant
26-03-2007, 11:31 AM
Andy, why did you delete your post asking us to give you a position from a Grandmaster game and offering to analyse it in the same way as you did the others?

Very good offer and would go some way towards proving your rating. I will try to find a suitable position but it may take some time, if someone has a position handy, please post it and we'll put andy to the test!

Basil
26-03-2007, 11:47 AM
I have a position handy. It involves clutching ones ankles ... Andy, are you ready?

andytoh
26-03-2007, 11:59 AM
Andy, why did you delete your post asking us to give you a position from a Grandmaster game and offering to analyse it in the same way as you did the others?

Very good offer and would go some way towards proving your rating. I will try to find a suitable position but it may take some time, if someone has a position handy, please post it and we'll put andy to the test!
Because I realize that when I pass the test, I'll still have people throwing rocks at me so there would be no point. You see the previous post? Why bother earning my way back where I'll just be harassed?

Basil
26-03-2007, 12:02 PM
Because I realize that when I pass the test, I'll still have people like Howard Duggan throwing rocks at me so there would be no point.
Well perhaps you should have read my profile a little more carefully before you signed on this board. Besides, I'm giving up the sausages all over again [Day 04] :doh:

I'll tell you what, I won't post in this thread until at least Friday. Promise.

Mind the soap.

EDIT: don't be sanctimonious, matey. At least my approach is proportionate and reactive. Yours was insidious and attempted to mislead.

WhiteElephant
26-03-2007, 12:05 PM
LOL! Howard used to harrass me as well.

Anyway, I think you need to show us some original analysis to gain some credibility. Position forthcoming.

andytoh
26-03-2007, 12:14 PM
My PM to Kevin Bonham, as posted in post #43, was written to him before anyone expressed that my first puzzle was from a book. He can vouch for that (or at least he can look at the time of my PM to him to verify). Read the second last paragraph in that PM and deduce if I stole puzzle #2 and #3 (and #4, which I sent to him as well) from a book.

By the way, the position has to be from a real grandmaster game where there is a clear best plan (not all positions have a certain best plan), ideally with an exclamation mark on the move, and the game continuation was won cleanly.

andytoh
26-03-2007, 01:25 PM
[26-03-2007 06:22 AM] Howard Duggan: It's time to go Andy ... really ... toodle-oo
[26-03-2007 12:53 PM] Boris: caught red-handed and still won't admit it
[26-03-2007 12:54 PM] Boris: I enjoyed the puzzles, but he should have attributed them to the real authors.

Still think I copied the puzzles after the first one? I'm not subjecting myself to this torture anymore. Good-bye.

Desmond
26-03-2007, 01:34 PM
Still think I copied the puzzles after the first one? Perhaps, perhaps not. What I think is that a bona fide 2300 player would not need to steal the first example. Why would it be desirable for a 2300 player to do so? I cannot think of a reason.
You can post your position and I'll prove my originality, but I won't be doing it for this bulletin board. Don't expect a stream of puzzles after that.Not a GM game, but would be interested in you take on the postition here (http://www.chesschat.org/showpost.php?p=147927&postcount=76) after white's 18th and a draw was offered.

Kevin Bonham
26-03-2007, 02:48 PM
By the way, the position has to be from a real grandmaster game where there is a clear best plan (not all positions have a certain best plan), ideally with an exclamation mark on the move, and the game continuation was won cleanly.

Yes, well, anyone could make a "puzzle" out of such a clearcut situation using a sufficiently strong computer program.

pax
26-03-2007, 05:23 PM
Still think I copied the puzzles after the first one?

Speaking for myself, I don't care whether they are copied or not. The fact that you copied the first one and did not reveal it's source until others found it demonstrates that you are dishonest.

Why should anybody spend any time working out whether you are for real or not? You have lost credibility, and will probably not regain it even if you are now telling the truth..


I'm not subjecting myself to this torture anymore. Good-bye.
See ya.

WhiteElephant
26-03-2007, 06:39 PM
By the way, the position has to be from a real grandmaster game where there is a clear best plan (not all positions have a certain best plan), ideally with an exclamation mark on the move, and the game continuation was won cleanly.

What a load of BS. I give up on this guy.

By the way, andy, are you sure you're not related to qpawn?

Garvinator
26-03-2007, 07:03 PM
By the way, andy, are you sure you're not related to qpawn?
:lol: :lol: :lol:

Basil
26-03-2007, 09:45 PM
Andy, a selection of GM games for you to analyse. I feel these match your ability:


Fischer - Spassky, Reykjavik 1972
1. Resigns

Fischer - Panno
1. c4 ... Resigns

Hubner - Rogoff, Graz 1972
1.c4 ... Draw

Van Der Sterren - Povah, 1978
1.e4 e5
2. Draw

Kevin Bonham
26-03-2007, 11:31 PM
Fischer - Panno
1. c4 ... Resigns

I have Watson's analysis to hand and will be alert if it is plagiarised. :lol:

(Howard and I are both ripping off Fox and James jokes here. :hmm: )

Garrett
27-03-2007, 06:45 AM
(deleted - cannot post image)

Basil
27-03-2007, 05:57 PM
Andy, I have been doing some analysis of my own. I think you DO have designs (delusions) on doing some analysis of your own. And why not? Chess is a beautiful game.

I think you have been correctly macheted (welcome to the partay ;)) because:

-- you DID mislead people by referring to YOUR solutions with at least the first (see Pax's complete assessment to which I can add nothing)
-- you DO have designs on doing this commercially (even though you convinced a sap student in the Netherlands that you're a benefactor)
-- your OWN work (either prematurely induced or using BB audiences as commercial guinea pigs) is hopelessly sub-standard.

The grammar, which is either your own native (or re-worked plagiarised content), is atrocious.

In all, a back-end run on an ill-conceived business platform, lacking the necessary ingredients, viz:

-- literacy
-- knowledge of subject matter
-- commercial transparency
-- heightened propensity to sook!

Basil
28-03-2007, 03:23 AM
Also from my perennial reference, Fox & James' Even More Complete Chess Addict

"Competing for the Prince Dadian of Mingrelia award for plagiarism are two problemists:" (still with me Andy?)
... "100 Published Chess Problems, by Percy Wenman (you can still find it in second-hand bookshops) was notable for containing a quantity of problems by just about anybody but Percy Wenman! (Andy, still here? Good-o)

While of 100 Chess Problems by B. Scriven, B.H. Wood said 'The few problems that are sound, are plagiarised'."

Basil
28-03-2007, 03:39 AM
Also courtesy Fox & James

The worst chess book ever written? The entries are too numerous and the laws of libel too inhibiting for us to declare an outright winner. Among the contenders, two fo the most unintelligible writers on the game; the impenetrable Franklin K. Young, and the downright loopy Cho-Yo.

For a flavour of Young's style, here he is describing checkmate (channeling Axiom? with apologies to same) 'Given a Geometric Symbol Positive or a combination of Geometric Symbols Positive which is coincident with the Objective Plane; then if the prime Tactical Factor can be posted at the Point of Command, the adverse king may be checkmated' (The Grand Tactics of Chess, 1896). Got it?

Cho-Yo wrote a book called Japanese Chess (Press Club Chicago, 1905) but in it he had much to say about chess in general. Like: 'Queening a pawn would be a ridiculous performance if we do not understand it chessonymously by esoteric connotations of the meaning on trans-modifications of force or vitality. There is an exotery literally no Queening a pawn in the Science and art of War - nay! - all kinds of struggles.'

Garrett
28-03-2007, 07:12 AM
Hi everyone !

My name is AndyToss. I am a chessplayer with a rating of 2300 (at go-fish).

I am currently reading, err sorry - writing a book on chess puzzles of which the position below is for.

The position attached, with white to move, is from the actual Grandmediocre game George Lester – Craig Stewart – Logan Club championship 2007.

You have to choose whites next move from the 3 plans described….


Plan A – Play 25. Be8.

Then black cannot play 32…. Rxe8 as 28. Qxf7 is mate. The pressure will eventually tell on the pawn on f7.

Plan B – Play Qe7

This plan is stronger than the first plan as now all the pieces gang up on f7.

Plan C – Play Rxh6 check.

This plan is the strongest of all as white will mate. The following moves are calculated

25 Rxf6+ Kxh6
26 Rf4
Now black can do no better than to play Qe2 as the checks will run out after the king reaches the third rank and the bishop will stop checks by returning to f3.

26…… Qe2
27 Rh4+ Qh5
28 Rxh5+ Kxh5
29 Qf3 Nxc6
30 h4 and mates - beautifully calculated !!

The solution will be posted shortly ……

Garrett
28-03-2007, 07:14 AM
Read puzzle on previous page.

Plan A will win.

Plan B will win even quicker.

Plan C is the plan actually chosen by the imbecile conducting the white pieces but falls short after

25 Rxh6+ Kxh6
26 Rf4 Qa1+
27 Kf2 Qb2+
28 Kg3 White should take the perpetual.
….. Qxc3
29 Bf3 Qe1+
30 Kh3 Nd7 !!
0 - 1

There is a happy ending to this story. White managed to cry himself to sleep by 3am……

andytoh
28-03-2007, 12:28 PM
White to move.

This position comes from Game 23 of Nunn's "Understanding Chess Move by Move." Nunn describes the text-move simply by saying "The best move." followed by a short sentence. He does not describe any other move or plan for White. Also, Nunn missed an important (and hidden) variation that I had to analyze in my solution. Good luck!

andytoh
28-03-2007, 12:29 PM
Plan A:
In this position, I have the better position mainly because I have more active pieces and the better pawn structure. In fact, Black's bad pawn structure is also causing his King safety issues because either way he castles, his King will not have a good pawn shield. Nevertheless, his King is safe enough to withstand any direct attack at this moment. As a result, I opt to attack finer points in his position, like his weak pawns. In particular, I find his d6-pawn to be a weakness since it is a backward pawn sitting on a semi-open file. Seing that I have yet to develop my Rooks, I elect to play 14.Rfd1, followed shortly by doubling Rooks on the d-file, which also happens to be the only file that is open for my Rooks. If Black attempts to cover his d6-pawn by capturing my Knight on d5, then after exd5, ...Ne7, Qf3, I will have good central space while Black's central light squares will be very weak and he won't be able to play his desired ...f5 push. This would especially be a problem for his dark-squared Bishop, which would remain obstructed by its central pawns on dark squares for a long time. Thus my pressure against Black's d6-pawn will force Black's pieces onto passive positions while I will have plenty of time to attack his other weak pawns, e.g. by a2-a4, or even his weak Kingside pawns. If it turns out the d6-pawn does not become a serious target, I can instead develop my a1-Rook to c1 and my Rooks on c1 and d1 are still in nicely developed squares. Thus 14.Rfd1 is a flexible move as well.

Plan B:
Unlike plan A, I don't think Black's d6-pawn is a serious target because the d-file is already obstructed by my own pieces. I instead intend to put further pressure on b5 by clearing my a3-Knight from the a-file by playing 14.c3, and then play Nc2 and a2-a4. Regardless of how Black responds to a2-a4, e.g. by capturing on a4, or by pushing his b-pawn, I will have a target to attack on a6. Capturing with ...bxa4 would be especially nice since it would open the a-file for my Rook and allow me to attack a6 even more. Pushing the b-pawn with ...b4 may not even be an option for Black since I will have both my Knights and c3-pawn controlling that square, and even if he could play ...b4, it would still leave his a6-pawn weak and his b4-pawn would be under pressure as well, considering that ...a5 would allow my bad Bishop to go to the nice b5-square and pin Black's Knight. Furthermore, the moves c2-c3, Nc2 allow my a3-Knight to develop to greener pastures, as does the move a2-a4 for my Bishop.

Plan C:
Unlike plan B, I believe that more emphasis should be placed on improving the position of my a3-Knight, which is currently inactive on the side of the board and has no squares to go to and my Bishop, which is currently obstructed by my e4-pawn. Instead of 14.c3, however, I believe a more dynamic way to develop my Knight and Bishop is with the move 14.c4. The move also fights for more space on the Queenside, which currently Black has more of.
14.c4 also comes with tempo since it attacks Black's b5-pawn. To answer this threat, Black may play 14...bxc4, which would allow me to activate my Knight (or Bishop) immediately to c4, or 14...b4. After 14...b4 15.Nc2 a5, my Knight will not be able to advance immediately, but this can be rectified by the move 15.g3, which would allow my Knight to move to e3, where is would eye the weak f5-square and give support to my Knight outpost on d5.

These plans were written by me. You can check the book yourself, but you should do it after you've tried the puzzle first to benefit the most from it. Don't forget to think about Black's plan this time. Never ignore your opponent's plan!

Axiom
28-03-2007, 12:43 PM
i thought c4 before looking at the plans, so im going with plan C

Desmond
28-03-2007, 12:45 PM
1.c3 looks to be the only option worth considering. 1.c4 creates a horrible hole on d4.

andytoh
28-03-2007, 12:46 PM
i thought c4 before looking at the plans, so im going with plan C
Are you just going by instinct? Because there is a lot of thought (and calculations) involved here.

Axiom
28-03-2007, 12:47 PM
Are you just going by instinct? Because there is a lot of thought (and calculations) involved here.
Instinct

WhiteElephant
28-03-2007, 01:00 PM
Read puzzle on previous page.

Plan A will win.

Plan B will win even quicker.

Plan C is the plan actually chosen by the imbecile conducting the white pieces but falls short after

25 Rxh6+ Kxh6
26 Rf4 Qa1+
27 Kf2 Qb2+
28 Kg3 White should take the perpetual.
….. Qxc3
29 Bf3 Qe1+
30 Kh3 Nd7 !!
0 - 1

There is a happy ending to this story. White managed to cry himself to sleep by 3am……


LOL! Commiserations. Rxh6 is the flashy move...would have been nice if it paid off.

Kevin Bonham
28-03-2007, 01:50 PM
I have been advised by Neville Ledger c/- Peter Parr that the subsequent editions of B+P are simply reprints and do not contain new material, contrary to some earlier indications. This means that apart from the first puzzle, none of the others have been taken from B+P. Whether any of the remaining material is taken from another source, or cobbled together from other sources, or whether it is all original is not clear.

andytoh, I am giving you the same warning here that your received on the other forum: if you are found to have plagiarised anything from this point on (even a single sentence) without due attribution, expect to be permanently banned.

In the meantime you can continue to post puzzles and I hope the members enjoy them. I, however, won't be attempting any (though I may check your analysis from time to time) unless you come clean about your playing strength and ratings and provide verifiable information about ratings you have held (which federation and when, if online which username on which site etc).

andytoh
28-03-2007, 02:24 PM
I, however, won't be attempting any (though I may check your analysis from time to time) unless you come clean about your playing strength and ratings and provide verifiable information about ratings you have held (which federation and when, if online which username on which site etc).

I'm Andy_t at playchess.com. I stopped playing over-the-board for about 10 years now. My rating used to be MCF (Malaysian Chess Federation). I don't think you will find my rating there any more (I can't remember exactly what it was, around 1950 I think but I strongly believe I have improved), and Toh is an abbreviation of my last name, but I don't want to give my full name if that's ok with you. You can continue to call me by Andy, and I'm 34.

As I said before, my passion for chess only continues in the form of chess analysis. If that sounds weird to you, then I assure you that I have other hobbies too, like snooker, and mathematics to take up my free time.

andytoh
28-03-2007, 02:31 PM
1.c3 looks to be the only option worth considering. 1.c4 creates a horrible hole on d4.
A Knight outpost on d4 looks like a good thing, but is Black happy about the pawn on e5, which the d4-Knight would have to rely on?

Desmond
28-03-2007, 02:41 PM
A Knight outpost on d4 looks like a good thing, but is Black happy about the pawn on e5?If Black is unhappy about the pawn on e5 he might wish to reconsider his opening system.

Basil
28-03-2007, 02:43 PM
I'll call you Andy, and you can call me any time you wish to agree that you started the rot by miseading us.

Once you have done so, I will give you a fair an even break. You have my word. To pretend it never happened or that it was justifiable is not an option for me.

andytoh
28-03-2007, 02:52 PM
I'll call you Andy, and you can call me any time you wish to agree that you started the rot by miseading us.


As I said before, I used Bellin and Ponzetto's puzzle in my first puzzle to make sure that the opening puzzle was good so that I can stir an interest. After that, my intention was to use my own puzzles because I honestly believe they are close to being as good and theirs (if not, then this way I would find out, and perhaps learn where I can improve in my analyses). I finished all 30 of Bellin and Ponzetto's puzzles (solving most of them correctly) and obviously wanted more.

Basil
28-03-2007, 04:08 PM
I'll call you Andy, and you can call me any time you wish to agree that you started the rot by miseading us
As I said before, I used Bellin and Ponzetto's puzzle in my first puzzle to make sure that the opening puzzle was good so that I can stir an interest

You know damn well that that is not an apology or anything remotely close to acknowledgement of fault. You conduct yourself now as you did then - evasively.

You misrepresented yourself! Digest! Acknowledge! Stop fiddling with words.

Weasel.

Kevin Bonham
28-03-2007, 06:28 PM
I'm Andy_t at playchess.com.

I've been told there is a player by this name who in fact has a playchess rating over 2400 but it is almost entirely based on blitz games.

andytoh
28-03-2007, 09:23 PM
You know damn well that that is not an apology or anything remotely close to acknowledgement of fault. You conduct yourself now as you did then - evasively.

You misrepresented yourself! Digest! Acknowledge! Stop fiddling with words.

Weasel.

Ok, I'm sorry about not being upfront immediately. I started the whole rot by misleading you. But I'm not misleading you now. I thought you wanted to know why I did it in the first place.

Basil
28-03-2007, 09:27 PM
Ok, I'm sorry about not being upfront immediately.
Not great. However, you may wish to consider my running commentary at an end.

Axiom
28-03-2007, 09:40 PM
All Hail Andytoh!

Kevin Bonham
28-03-2007, 09:55 PM
Yeah, good on him for finally apologising and I'm suspecting we're now somewhere near the correct state of affairs - also noticed him giving plenty of credit for analysis by GM Nunn in his posts on chessexchange.

As for improving while you're not playing, you might become a better analyst doing so but if you spend ten years not playing OTB then go back to playing OTB your OTB rating will probably crash in most cases due to lack of "match toughness". I have known some very good players to stay at their old level but it's rare.

andytoh
28-03-2007, 10:41 PM
also noticed him giving plenty of credit for analysis by GM Nunn in his posts on chessexchange.
You guys might not want to go there, because I'm still writing out my review of one of the plans, since Nunn missed a line that I'm still working through.

andytoh
29-03-2007, 12:27 PM
Well, this one took hours to write out. Not only because Nunn omitted a line, but a 2089 FIDE rated player actually believed that GM Nunn was wrong! So writing a convincing argument to support plan C required quite some effort, especially since Nunn did not discuss plan C much (he basically only commented on the move 14.c4) and did not mention plan B at all. In the end, he admitted that plan C might be best, though not totally convinced, and if it is, it is not much better than plan B. So let's get on with it!

Assessment of Plan A:
This is a bad plan. Black's d6-pawn not is a serious target because to really threaten it, you will have to move your strong d5-Knight, which is currently your best piece. You would also have to move your d3-Bishop, which is currently putting pressure on the b5-pawn. Although you could maintain pressure on the b5-pawn by moving your Bishop on e2, this would move your Bishop off the c1-h7-diagonal. On this diagonal, your Bishop and Queen on h5 would be attacking h7 should Black sometime in the future capture your strong d5-Knight (either with his other Knight or his Bishop) and you recapture with your e4-pawn. This of course would be a serious problem for Black should Black castle Kingside (which is expected of him sometime soon). More importantly, though, on the c1-h7 diagonal your Bishop helps your e4-pawn prevent the move ...f5. So to really put pressure on the d6-pawn you have to move two important pieces from positions that really help constitute your advantage.
Also, though 14.Rfd1 itself is a flexible move, once you've decided to double Rooks with Rdd2 you will be losing one tempo if you later decide to double Rooks on the c-file (e.g. by Rac1, c2-c4, ...bxc4, Rxc4, Rdc2). It is also possible that you may want to double on the a-file should you later play a2-a4, in which case you would lose a tempo if you only played Rfd1, and would regret if you furthermore played Rdd2. Thus, apart from choosing a dubious plan, you are placing a Rook on d1 a bit too early and the move is not as flexible as you claim it to be. Finally, your plan also makes no effort to activate the a3-Knight, unlike the other two plans, and doubling Rooks on a file that is obstructed by two pieces of yours on important squares hardly makes up for that.

Assessment of Plan B:
The thrust a2-a4 is a common move in Sveshnikov positions, and indeed White will have the upper hand if this plan is played out. Attacking b5 with a2-a4 will give you the c4-square, so you can eventually play Bc4, and after c3, Nc2, a2-a4, ...bxa4, Rxa4 and possibly Rfa1, you will have activated all your pieces. Your Rooks could put strong pressure on a6, and your Knight on c2 could assist with Ncb4 while also supporting your d5-Knight. So all in all, your plan is good.
However, this position has an extra element that you did not take much notice of. In this case Black has played ...f4 and thus you have an opportunity to prevent Black's other f-pawn from going to f5. A pawn on f5 exerts pressure on e4, which is your sole support of your d5-Knight outpost, and helps to free his bad Bishop on g7. Black's pawn chain e6-e5-f4 is severely restricting this Bishop, and since your e4-pawn prevents the e5-pawn from advancing, it helps to keep Black's Bishop bad. This shows the importance of the ...f5 push for Black. Because ...f4 has been played, Black can no longer get rid of your e-pawn and thus must rely on his other f-pawn to play ...f5. Since your plan needs at least three moves to materialize (c2-c3, Nc2, a4), you give Black precisely the time he needs to do precisely that.
After 14.c3 0-0 15.Nc2 Black has no worries playing his desired ...f5 (he may want to throw in ...Ne7 and threaten ...Nxd5 first). So although, your plan is good, it does nothing to try to prevent the ...f5 move, and because Plan C does do that effectively and thus indirectly takes advantage of Black's bad Bishop, then your plan is not considered best. Furthermore, your plan does not activate your pieces and take advantage of Black's vulnerable King as does Plan C.

Assessment of Plan C:
This is the best plan, which not only strives for piece activity in the most dynamic fashion, but also strives to preclude Black from playing ...f5 and thus focuses more on exploiting Black's bad Bishop. Nunn says "The strongest move. White opens up more on the Queenside, helping to activate both the a3-Knight and the d3-Bishop." (and nothing else). Of course, I looked more deeply. At this point, Black's b5-pawn is under a three-fold attack so he must make a choice. After 14...b4 15.Nc2 a5, it may seem that White's Knight has been robbed of the chance to advance, but after 16...fxg3, White's Knight can move to e3, where is ready to replace his strong d5-Knight should Black capture on d5, and also eyes the weak f5-square (thus firmly stops Black's desired ...f5-push once and for all). The move 16...g3 also allows White's King to clear the back rank with Kg2, thereby allowing Rh1 and attack Black's King should Black castle Kingside (which is essentially his best option, especially his current location of his King stops him from playing his desired ...f5 push). Though Black can postpone giving in with ...fxg3, if he waits too long White could instead attack along the g-file with Kh1, followed by gxf4 and Rg1.
After 14...bxc4, White has two good choices of which piece to put on c4 (at this point, Plan C has already activated White's pieces much faster than Plan B). Thought 15.Nxc4 seems the most sensible, 15.Bxc4 might even be better considering the tactical possibilities along the a2-g8 diagonal (e.g. after Black's desired ...0-0 and ...f5, his King will be practically staring at White's Bishop). This alone intuitively puts a damper on Black's desired ...f5 push. As opposed to Plan B, this plan takes into consideration the vulnerability of Black's King. Let us see:
After 14.c4 bxc4 15.Bxc4! 0-0 16.Rac1 f5 17.Rc3, Black's King already is already feeling some heat due to the upcoming Rh3. After 17...fxe4 19.Rh3 h6 19.Qg6 Nd4 20.Rxh6 Rf7 21.Nc2! Nxc2 22.Qxe6, White has a winning game. However, Black can also try the immediate 17...Nd4!?, which allows his Knight to come to the aid to the f5-square. However after 18.Rh3 h6 19.Qg6, due to the threat Rxh6, Black is forced to offer a trade of Queens with either 19...Qe8 or 19...Qg5. In both cases, analysis reveals that White ends up with the material advantage and Black has compensation in the form of an apparently dangerous central majority. But after 19...Qg5 and the Queen exchange, White can later give back his Rook for a minor piece and pawn and end up with a pawn-up endgame where Black will have weak pawns on a6 and h6, while after 19...Qe8 and the Queen exchange, White will be up an Exchange and can put up a firm blockade of Black's central pawns with his light-squared and Knight while Black's Bishop will of course have no control of the blockading light squares. A full analysis is found in the game continuation.
It was important to note that the weakening d4-square square is not a serious drawback since Black's dark-squared Bishop has no hope of making use of it and a d4-Knight outpost would rely on the e5-pawn as a support, and it is precisely this pawn that Black wants to move to free his bad dark-squared Bishop.

andytoh
29-03-2007, 12:33 PM
The game continuation. Remember that none of the positions I choose is winning for one side, so I'm not trying to convince you that the plan chosen is guaranteed to win, only that it is strategically best.

Stean (2510) - Sax (2550)
Las Palmas, 1978

14.c4 bxc4 15.Bxc4 0-0 16.Rac1 Rb8
[The following analysis by Nunn shows that plan C has indeed robbed Black of the opportunity to play ...f5:
16...f5 17.Rc3
a) 17...fxe4 18.Rh3 h6 19.Qg6 Nd4 20.Rxh6 Rf7 21.Nc2! Nxc2 (The threat is 21...-- 22.Nxd4 exd4 23.Qxe6) 22.Qxe6
and White wins.
The threat is 22...-- 23.Nf6+ Qxf6 (23...Bxf6 24.Qxf7#; 23...Kf8 24.Qxf7#) 24.Rxf6 Bxf6 25.Qxf7+;
b) 17...Na5 18.Rh3 Nxc4 (18...h6 loses to 19.Qg6 Re8 20.Rxh6) 19.Qxh7+ Kf7 20.Qh5+ Kg8 21.Nxc4 fxe4 22.Qh7+ Kf7 23.Rh6
and again White wins.
The threat is 23...-- 24.Rf6+ Ke8 25.Rxe6+;
c) 17...Nd4!?
Nunn missed this move.
18.Rh3 h6 19.Qg6 Qg5 (19...Qe8 20.Rxh6 Qxg6 21.Rxg6 Kf7 22.exf5 Nxf5 23.Rxe6 Kxe6 24.Nc7+ Kd7 25.Nxa8 Rxa8 26.Nb1 Nd4 27.Nc3 a5 28.Nd5 Rb8 29.b3 and White soon wins.) 20.Qxg5 hxg5 21.exf5 Rxf5 22.Ne7+ Kf7 23.Nxf5 Nxf5 24.Bxe6+ Kxe6 25.Rb3 e4 26.Rd1 Rc8 27.Rb6 e3 28.fxe3 fxe3 29.Kf1 Nd4 30.Re1 e2+ 31.Rxe2+ Nxe2 32.Kxe2 Kd7 33.b4
with a winning endgame.;
16...Ne7 can be met by
17.Nc7 Qxc7 18.Bxe6 Qb7 19.Bb3
This illustrates the power of placing the Bishop on the a2-g8 diagonal: 19...Qxe4? loses to 20.Bc2.]

17.b3
17...Bxd5
17...f5 may be still be met by 18.Rc3 in a similar way as before.
18.Bxd5
18.exd5? would have been an error since Black would have no trouble activating his Bishop on ...f5 and ...e4. Thanks to Plan C, White has has a strong Bishop on d5, eyeing Black's King and the f7 point.
18...Nb4
Of course Black wants to chop of White's strong Bishop and get in ...e4 to finally free his bad Bishop.
19.Rfd1! Nxa2
Black has nothing better than to do. [After 19...Nxd5 20.Rxd5
followed by Nc4 and Rcd1, Black will be completely tied down to the defence his d6-pawn, which was the aim of Plan A. Here it is done with better timing.
20...Qf6 21.Nc4 Rfd8 22.Rcd1 Bf8 23.Ra5 Ra8 24.Nb6 Ra7 25.Nd5 Qh6 26.Qxh6 Bxh6 27.Rc1 f3 28.Rc6
This variaton even shows that Plan C can attack Black's weak Queenside pawns just as effectively as Plan B.]
20.Rc6
Black's extra pawn is not enough compensation for White's piece activity and his debilitated Bishop. The threat of 21.Rxd6 and 21.Nc4 is very annoying.
20...Rb6?! 21.Rxb6
Now we will see the a3-Knight going to c4 this time. It will furthermore go to f5 and assist in attacking Black's King, and so stopping ...f5 once and for all (though that's ancient history now).
21...Qxb6 22.Nc4 Qc7 23.Nxd6
Thank's to White's Bishop on the a2-g8 diagonal (achieved by Plan C), White wins the d6-pawn, but there is much more to come.
23...Nc3 24.Nf5
Black has no time to take the Rook due to 25.Qg5.
24...Kh8 25.Rd3
Even in the game continuation we see the 26.Rh3 threat surfacing.
25...Nxd5 26.Rxd5 f6
Black was never able to play ...f5. Now he plays ...f6 to deal with White's threat of 27.Nxg7 Kxg7 28.Qg5+, making his Bishop even worse.
27.h3 Rg8 28.Qd1
Black resigned in view of Rd7.
So thanks to Plan C, Black was never able to play ...f5, thus leaving his Bishop completely inactive for the entire game, and White's pieces acquired the c4-square much faster than Plan B would have, thereby leading to the active play and winning continuation we just witnessed.

Phew! I think I'm going to have to take a break now.

Aaron Guthrie
29-03-2007, 12:51 PM
I don't get it, Nunn missed a move that loses?

andytoh
29-03-2007, 12:59 PM
I don't get it, Nunn missed a move that loses?
No, Nunn missed a move that could have refuted plan C, but I checked that everything is still all good for White. You can follow my analysis of 17...Nd4 in the game continuation. I simplified the maze of variations so as to bring across the gist of the idea.

The 2089 FIDE player phobetor still likes Plan B most, but not because of 17...Nd4, but because he likes attacking the Queenside more. We are still debating over it actually. I still agree with Nunn.

Aaron Guthrie
29-03-2007, 01:16 PM
No, Nunn missed a move that could have refuted plan C, but I checked that everything is still all good for White.OK fair enough. It does seem to me a rather bad turn of phrase though. If the move doesn't refute them, then it doesn't seem to me you can say they missed it. Also I am not sure what you mean by refute. It doesn't seem credible to me that c4 is, with best play by White, going to end up with anything worse (from Whites point of view) than an unclear position.


Well, this one took hours to write out. Not only because Nunn omitted a line, but a 2089 FIDE rated player actually believed that GM Nunn was wrong! So writing a convincing argument to support plan C required quite some effort, especially since Nunn did not discuss plan C much (he basically only commented on the move 14.c4) and did not mention plan B at all. In the end, he admitted that plan C might be best, though not totally convinced, and if it is, it is not much better than plan B.There are plenty of games with c4, and at least a few times c3 has been played by decent players. He could look at the games to further his knowledge of the two moves.

andytoh
29-03-2007, 01:23 PM
By refute I mean that Black could play ...f5 unscathed, thus defeating one of the main purposes of choosing Plan C over Plan B. 17...Nd4 almost did refute White's plan, because White's Rook gets trapped in one line, but some moves down the road things turned around, thanks to the d5-Knight (a point which finally puts Plan A to to shame).

Aaron Guthrie
29-03-2007, 01:36 PM
This is my cave-man explanation of why c4 is a good move compared to c3.

c4- tempo, tempo goooood.

:)

(I gave up two knights for two tempos in the opening once, so I know on occasion tempos can be important (also Purdy says so))

andytoh
29-03-2007, 01:43 PM
Yes. I did mention that Plan B is rather slow, allowing Black time to relieve some of his problems.

Axiom
29-03-2007, 04:33 PM
Glad to see my instinctive c4,bears up well after closer scrutiny!

Kevin Bonham
29-03-2007, 06:08 PM
Well, this one took hours to write out. Not only because Nunn omitted a line, but a 2089 FIDE rated player actually believed that GM Nunn was wrong!

Sometimes GMs are wrong and with computers these days it's not that hard to show it. I've personally refuted analysis by a few GMs (and in most cases had them acknowledge it. :D )

Might have a look at this one later.

andytoh
29-03-2007, 09:09 PM
Yes. When you post your answer before my solution goes up, then no one can argue that you got it right. ;)

Axiom
29-03-2007, 09:29 PM
Yes. When you post your answer before my solution goes up, then no one can argue that you got it right. ;)
Thankyou :)

Kevin Bonham
29-03-2007, 11:09 PM
With a position so early in the game it is worth doing database searches to see if it has occurred in other games too. Which it has: chessbase has over 1000 games in this position.

14.Rfd1 is rarely played by anyone.

14.c3 is played (or the same position reached) reasonably often (164 games). However after 14...0-0 (a position top players are more likely to reach by other means than by playing 14.c3) those top players usually don't play 15.Nc2, they tend to play 15.Rad1 - adherents include Anand, Svidler, Barua - or 15.Rfd1 (Anand again, Ganguly, Topalov).

14.c4 is much commoner being seen in many GM games.

Here is a recent GM game won by White after playing 14.c3

Barua-Harikrishna, 2003


1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e5 6.Ndb5 d6 7.Bg5 a6 8.Na3 b5
9.Bxf6 gxf6 10.Nd5 f5 11.Bd3 Be6 12.0-0 Bg7 13.Qh5 f4 14.c3 0-0 15.Rad1 Ne7 16.c4 Ng6
17.Bb1 Rb8 18.cxb5 axb5 19.Nc2 Qd7 20.h3 b4 21.Ncxb4 Bxd5 22.Nxd5 Rxb2 23.Rc1 Qb5 24.Qf5 Rb8
25.Bc2 f3 26.Qxf3 Rxa2 27.Nc3 Ra3 28.Nxb5 Rxf3 29.gxf3 Rxb5 30.Rb1 Rc5 31.Rb8+ Bf8 32.Bb3 Rc3
33.Ra1 Kg7 34.Bd5 Rxf3 35.Ra7 Be7 36.Rbb7 Kf6 37.Kg2 Nh4+ 38.Kh2 Ng6 39.h4 h5 40.Rd7 Kg7
41.Rxe7 Nxe7 42.Rxe7 Rxf2+ 43.Kg3 Rf4 44.Rd7 Rf6 45.Bc4 Rg6+ 46.Kh3 Rf6 47.Be2 Kg6 48.Kg3 Re6
49.Rd8 f5 50.Rg8+ Kh7 51.exf5 Rf6 52.Rd8 Kg7 53.Bd3 Kf7 54.Rd7+ Ke8 55.Rh7 d5 56.Bb5+ Kf8
57.Bd7 Rb6 58.Be6 Rb3+ 59.Kf2 e4 60.Rf7+ 1-0

...but note that he did not play Nc2, a4 etc.

Here's Anand playing 15.Nc2 and winning:

Anand-McShane 2003
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e5 6.Ndb5 d6 7.Bg5 a6 8.Na3 b5
9.Bxf6 gxf6 10.Nd5 f5 11.c3 Bg7 12.Bd3 Be6 13.Qh5 0-0 14.0-0 f4 15.Nc2 f5 16.Ncb4 Nxb4
17.Nxb4 a5 18.exf5 Bf7 19.Qh3 Qf6 20.Nc2 Rab8 21.g3 Bh6 22.a4 b4 23.cxb4 d5 24.Bb5 Rfc8
25.Ne1 e4 26.bxa5 f3 27.a6 Bg7 28.Rb1 h5 29.b4 Rc7 30.Kh1 Qg5 31.Bd3 exd3 32.b5 d2
33.Nxf3 Qh6 34.Qh4 Qb6 35.Nxd2 Rc2 36.Rbd1 Re8 37.f6 Bxf6 38.a5 Bxh4 39.axb6 Bd8 40.b7 Bb6
41.Rc1 Bg6 42.Rce1 1-0

but note here that Anand responded to 15...f5 by delaying the a4 push and finding another use for the move Nc2 by playing 16.Ncb4 instead.

I think one problem here is that while one GM might think something is the best move at a particular stage, opening theory tends to challenge such judgements quickly and players find that if a particular position is basically strong then there are a variety of different ways to play it. Maybe c4 is the "best move" but to explain why would involve considering a wide range of alternative plans to the ones given, and also recognising that given moves are multi-purpose ("I'll do A if he does B, but if he does C I'll do D instead rather than just playing my plan no matter what".)

I suppose for puzzle purposes that's OK since what you want someone to do is work out which of the suggested plans is best (and recognise a bad plan when they see it), not necessarily find the perfect plan in the position.)

andytoh
30-03-2007, 01:12 AM
(Taking notes for future puzzles)

I chose this position because I found it interesting and full of imbalances. I actually didn't think to check a database because I thought the position was unique (Black's very bad Bishop on g7 made me assume that no two games would reach this position). I'm even more surprised that a couple dozen GMs played 14.Rfd1 (though they probably did not plan on doubling on the d-file). MegaDatabase 2006 confirms my belief that Plan C prevents ...f5 completely after 14...bxc4 15.Bxc4, because Black has never played ...f5 after that. I guess the advantage of studying a position that has occurred many times is that by looking up a database you get a GM panel of judges casting their votes.

However, in the future I will look for positions that have only occurred once, that way we are forced to think on our own. I takes time to find a good position, and I basically will analyze annotated games until I come to such a position. Then I will make my next puzzle, coming up in a few days.

Desmond
30-03-2007, 11:26 AM
(Taking notes for future puzzles)

I chose this position because I found it interesting and full of imbalances. I actually didn't think to check a database because I thought the position was unique Riiiiight, and you a 1950 player who studies a lot are you? Get real. I don't even play the sicilian and I have some familiararity with this position. :hand:

Garrett
30-03-2007, 01:01 PM
Riiiiight, and you a 1950 player who studies a lot are you? Get real. I don't even play the sicilian and I have some familiararity with this position. :hand:

Boris is telling the truth.

It would be a cold, cold, icy day in hell the occasion he picked up his c-pawn and dropped it forward two squares in response to 1.e4.

andytoh
30-03-2007, 09:22 PM
Boris is telling the truth.

It would be a cold, cold, icy day in hell the occasion he picked up his c-pawn and dropped it forward two squares in response to 1.e4.
You guys still think I'm misleading you?

Kevin Bonham
31-03-2007, 01:56 AM
You guys still think I'm misleading you?

To be honest, your act still seems a little bit odd. In particular, I am unsure why you so frequently make posts and then delete them, when those posts appear to be in all respects harmless.

andytoh
31-03-2007, 05:59 AM
The reasons were minor. My blitz play I felt was irrelevant to this thread. I gave a hint to the solution that I think should not have been given out. The informant-style puzzle I gave was clearly less instructive than my preferred style. Nothing major.

andytoh
31-03-2007, 06:00 AM
Ok, this puzzle is not from opening theory, so we don't have other grandmasters to rely on.

White to move.

andytoh
31-03-2007, 06:04 AM
Plan A:
Due to the Kings having castled on opposite sides of the board, I consider that I should attack Black on the Queenside. That he has already pushed his a- and b-pawns allows me to open files more quickly while Black has not started any pawn break on the Kingside to attack my King. In fact, should I manage to open the a-file with my Rook on a1, then Black's Knight would not be able to move due to Ra8+, ...Kb7, Rxd8, ...Rxd8, Bxe5, winning a pawn due to the pin of Black's Bishop on the d-file.
Thus, the first stage of my plan is to open the a-file. Since 15.a4? loses to the Knight fork 15...Nc5, then I propose to play 14.b4 first so as to create a pawn lever to put into effect a3-a4, which also has the extra benefit of stopping ...Nc5. If Black responds with ...bxa4, then I can pile up pressure on Black's weak a6-pawn and doubled c-pawns. If Black instead allows me to capture on b5, then I obtain my open a-file since ...cxb5? loses to Rxa6.

Plan B:
Unlike Plan A, I believe that White's play should not be on the Queenside but more so on the Kingside, and instead of pawn-play I believe active piece-play is the more dominant task at hand. In particular, I should be activating my Knights on the Kingside. Seeing weak points at h7 and f7, the move I propose is 15.Ng5, which also clears the f3-square for my other Knight to aid in my play on the Kingside.
Since 15...h6 loses a Rook to 16.Nf7, Black may try to fight for the initiative with 16...Nc5, but then comes 17.Rg3 h5 18.Ndf3, when I have moved my pieces swiftly to the Kingside and threats like h2-h3 puts Black's weak g7-pawn in danger. I'm not concerned about Bxf3 since after Nxf3, Black's g7-pawn and e5-pawn are under fire and cannot both be saved. Even if Black averted this tactic, Black would have done me a favour by giving up his Bishop pair and leaving himself with a bad Bishop on d6.

Plan C:
I too would like to deploy my Knights on the Kingside but I feel that the g5-square is a bit too loose and prefer to send my Knight to f5 instead, where it is protected by a pawn, attacks the g7-pawn, and threatens to win another pawn with Nxd6. If Black decides to capture my f5-Knight with his Bishop, then, as noted in Plan B my game would have improved since Black no longer would have the Bishop pair while his dark-squared Bishop would be bad. Furthermore, after ...Bxf5, exf5, Black's isolated pawn would become a real target due to attacks along the e-file. Nor do I fear an attack on my f5-Knight with ...g6 since after Nh6 I would be attacking Black's Bishop and threatening to trap Black's Rook with f7 and thus would force Black to have both his Bishops in passive squares after ...Be6. Thus, I propose the move 15.Nh4, heading for f5, while I make ready to move my d2-Knight to f3 and my d3-Rook to g3 (whether Black attacks it with ...Nc5 or not).

Desmond
31-03-2007, 10:16 AM
You guys still think I'm misleading you?Still waiting on a run down of what you think the difference between a 2300 player and a GM is. Also still waiting on your analysis of the position I linked to.

andytoh
31-03-2007, 11:43 AM
I believe both players would understand a position and the correct aims of both sides more or less equally well. However, the GM is more able to find the best move because he can calculate more deeply, thoroughly, and accurately. If the GM has made a career out of chess, he should also know the latest opening lines and refutations better as well.

I still cannot see the position from the link you gave. Could you post the position itself?

andytoh
31-03-2007, 11:44 PM
Well, I made this puzzle easier because two plans were clearly bad. Actually, plan C could have been eliminated immediately due to 15...g6, but I went on to explain that the idea itself was bad even if Black could not stop it.

Assessment of Plan A:
Bad plan. Although opposite wing pawn breaks against castled Kings on opposite flanks can still be pursued when Queens are off the board, you should also open your eyes to other possible strategic goals since a such attacks generally are less violent without the Queens.
Apart from this, your proposed plan has problems on many levels. Firstly, any successful attack along the a-file will certainly require you to use both your Rooks, so to carry out your plan while claiming to immobilize Black's Knight (or Bishop) with your d3-Rook is a fallacy since this Rook would be carrying out two incompatible functions.
Doubling Rooks on the a-file cannot even be implemented without wasting a lot of time. Before playing a3-a4, you first have to protect your b4-pawn, and to do so with c2-c3 or Bc3 stops you from playing Rda3. To do so with Rb3 before a3-a4 wastes too much tempo, especially due to ...Be6. That leaves your Rook to take the Rd1-a1 route, rendering the whole ordeal too clumsy and slow.
Note that with Black's Bishop patrolling the a3-d6 diagonal and his Knight ready to jump to c5 (or b6), the Queenside is really owned by Black. Against your plan, you overlooked the simple ...Kb7 (and ...Ra8 if necessary) that allows Black to recapture on b5 with his c-pawn, when his Queenside is safe from any attack along the a-file and his c-pawns are undoubled. Also possible is for Black to recapture with his a-pawn and then offer Rook exchanges with ...Ra8, leading to nothing special for White. Thus, the reconstruction you seek would yield little result even if implemented.
Finally, your proposed move 15.b4 is refuted immediately by 15...c5, when Black is guaranteed the undoubling of his c-pawns, and essentially puts an end to your plan before it has even begun. In general, Black's Queenside can stand up to any attack, and is the wrong side to play on.

Assessment of Plan B:
The best plan. Let us understand the nature of this position first. White has the better pawn structure due to Black's doubled c-pawns and his isolated e-pawn, and he also has more pawn islands than you, but the price White had paid was granting Black the two Bishops. Fortunately, his Bishop pair is not particularly active at the moment, but at the same time you currently don't have much play against his weakened pawn structure either, and your pieces are not any more active than his. Usually positions like this rests in a state of equilibrium, but if one side can activate his pieces and grab the initiative, the balance can readily swing in the favour of one side. In particular, if the White Knights in this position become very active, then White can easily seize the advantage, especially since White's Knight pair versus Black's Bishop pair is a major imbalance in this position.
15.Ng5 is a actually an annoying move for Black to meet. Normally a White Knight on g5 and a Black pawn on h7 usually means that the Knight is very unstable, whether it is supported by a pawn or not, due to the simple ...h6. However, in this case White is grabbing the initiative due to the twin threats of Nf7 (winning the Exchange) and Nxh7. The manoevure Ng5-f7 not only attacks Black's Rook, which may or may not be trapped, but also attacks Black's isolated e-pawn, which currently is only being eyed by your Bishop since your e4-pawn is shielding it from your Rooks at the moment.
After 15.Ng5, Black's best way to deal with the threat of 16.Nf7 is to free his d8-Rook with 15...Nc5, activating his Knight with tempo. But after 16.Rg3 (this is another point of 15.Ng5--White's d3- Rook is now free to leap into the Kingside fray), Black is forced to play 16...h5 in order to save both his Bishop and h7-pawn. At this point, White's Knight on g5, which is usually vulnerable to ...h6, is now completely safe from Black's h-pawn. The g5-Knight may furthermore be simply replaced by White's other Knight (now heading for f3) should Black try to make an exchange with it, and you are correct that the exchange ...Bxf3 is in your favour for the reasons you have already mentioned.
In summary, your plan disturbs the balance in your favour and fights for the initiative in an effective way when Black's pieces are not quite ready to get into the thick of the fight, and the game continuation shows how White can take this further to obtain a winning game.

Assessment of Plan C:
Bad plan. On f5, apart from g7 your Knight does not actually attack much. Usually f5 is an excellent square for your Knight when Black has castled Kingside when ...g6 does generally weaken the squares around the Black King, but since Black's King is on the other side of the board the power of a Knight outpost inherent in f5 has lost some of its luster. As a result, you must inspect the merit of the f5- and g5- squares uniquely to this position, and from g5 your Knight attacks h7 and f7, the bonus being that from f7, your Knight attacks Black's (trapped) Rook and his isolated e-pawn which would otherwise be much safer in this position.
Furthermore, you have failed to see that having your Knights on f3 and f5, and your Rook on g3 fails tactically to ...Bxf5, exf5, ...e4, with an attack on your Knight and Rook. This means that to deploy both your Knights on the Kingside in the manner your propose would require you to leave your d3-Rook exposed to ...Nc5 attacks with no useful square to go to since your f3-Knight would be blocking its path to g3.
Finally, it should be noted that even if the idea of Nh4-f5 did not have these problems, Black could simply stop you from carrying out your plan with the simple 15...g6, which does not really weaken the Black Kingside (he will have to play ...g6 anyway to prevent the skewer Rg3 against the g4-Bishop and g7-pawn). In this case your Knight on h4 has nothing else to do but return to f3 and your whole strategy has been a complete failure.

andytoh
01-04-2007, 12:13 AM
Game continuation:

Van der Wiel (2555) - Van der Sterren (2515)
Rotterdam, 1997

15.Ng5! Nc5 16.Rg3 h5 17.Ndf3
This was a better move for White in my opinion, activating the other Knight on the Kingside and thus making Black's Bishops less of a match. Now White threatens 18.h3 when 18...Be6? loses the e5-pawn, 18...Bd7?? 19.Nf7 wins the Exchange, and 18.Bxf3 gives up the Bishop pair on demand, which was Black's only asset (and also loses either the e5-pawn or g7-pawn after 19.Nxf3). 17.Nf7 was the continuation.
17...g6 18.Nf7 Rd7 19.N7xe5
Thanks to White's Ng5-f7 manoeuvre, and the activation of his pieces, the tactical elements in this position are in his favour, and White wins a pawn after some tactical skirmish.
19...Nxe4 20.Rxe4 Bxe5 21.Bxe5 Rd5 22.Kf1 Bxf3 23.gxf3 Rdxe5 24.Rxg6 Kb7 25.Rxe5 Rxe5 26.f4
White now wins easily with his Kingside pawns, while Black's h-pawn will not be for long either.
26...Rc5 27.Rg5 Rxc2 28.f5 Rc5 29.h4 Kc8 30.f6 Rxg5 31.hxg5
And Black should resign.
1-0

No answers this time? I suppose I should cut down on the frequency of the puzzles? Well, I am becoming exhausted after all.

Kevin Bonham
01-04-2007, 02:20 AM
No answers this time? I suppose I should cut down on the frequency of the puzzles?

Or you could try increasing the gap between puzzle and solution to, say, a few days. The last one you posted the puzzle at 6am and the solution at 11pm - I'm not that concerned with attempting puzzles myself (more interested in looking at any tricky cases that show up like the Nunn one) but there'd be some days I wouldn't even get online til after 11pm!

Aaron Guthrie
01-04-2007, 02:57 AM
I think a puzzle from one of your own games would be more interesting.

I'd post one of my own as a puzzle, but it would be constructed something like this A-sensible move B-interesting move C-bloody stupid move no-one would ever play. Solution, C!! look what a stupid move I played that still works OMGBBQ!!!111

Axiom
01-04-2007, 03:28 AM
Or you could try increasing the gap between puzzle and solution to, say, a few days. The last one you posted the puzzle at 6am and the solution at 11pm - I'm not that concerned with attempting puzzles myself (more interested in looking at any tricky cases that show up like the Nunn one) but there'd be some days I wouldn't even get online til after 11pm!
yes i concur, leave a few days to give more a chance, and not to waste them.

andytoh
01-04-2007, 07:52 AM
I think a puzzle from one of your own games would be more interesting.

Ok. Here is a position from one of my blitz games. I'm Black, and I actually lost. I can't forget this position because the best move (best in my opinion) could have given me a good game and is not too hard to spot. But I simply did not think long enough to find it. Of course, the opening went out of book early, so you won't find this position in a database.

andytoh
01-04-2007, 08:54 AM
Plan A:
White has a clear space advantage on the Queenside, but he suffers from a weak square on d4, which my e5-pawn is ready to give support to once I get my Knight there. Since central domination generally overshadows an attack on the flank, and my most inactive minor piece is my e8-Knight, I plan to put this Knight on d4 via ...Ne6-d4 and so propose the move 14...Ne6. Once the d4-square is sufficiently guarded by me, e.g. by ...Rad8, and possibly a prepared ...c5 or clearing of my f6-Knight, my e6-Knight will be ready to jump to d4. Eventually, White may find it necessary to remove my annoying Knight outpost by capturing on it, in which case I will have a passed pawn that will cause Black further difficulty, and if protected by my c-pawn (e.g. via ...b6, ...c5), I will not ever have to worry about losing it and will become an even bigger problem for White.

Plan B:
I agree with the strategic considerations of Plan A, but a dominant strategic element in this position that Plan A ignores is the open d-file, which White's Queen sits at the end of and my Rooks can jump to immediately. Seeing that my a1-Rook is the only piece that has not moved, I elect to play 14...Rad8. By eyeing the enemy Queen, White will have to spend a tempo in order to move it out of danger.
This idea introduces some tactical elements clearly in my favour. For example, after moving my light-squared Bishop and putting my Knight on d4 via ...Ne6-d4, White cannot remove my annoying Knight outpost since Nxd4, ...exd4, Bxd4, Ng4! wins for White, e.g. Bxg7, ...Qxh2+, Kf1 (assuming the f1-Rook has moved to d1), ...Kxg7 and I regain my pawn with a strong attack against White's King in progress. Thus, my d4-Knight would be really reinforced.

Plan C:
I too believe that sending my Knight to d4 is strong idea, but I believe that moving my e8-Knight to d4 requires more preparation. In particular, I should be striving to win the d4-squares not only by bringing up more defenders of the square, but my removing White's current defenders of the d4-square. My plan is to trade my light-squared Bishop for White's f3-Knight, thus removing a key defender of the d4-square. I thus elect to play 14...Bg4, followed by capturing on f3 (which White cannot avoid due to the pin), and then the ...Ne6-d4 manoeuvre.
I must make this move immediately before White can prevent it with h2-h3. I do not mind giving White the Bishop pair because the center is not open, especially seeing as my Knight on d4 prevents White from generating any attack along d-file or the long diagonal. Nor do I mind White capturing on d4 for the reasons already stated in the other plans, since I can play ...Rad8 and ...b6, ...c5 later on to render my d4-Knight a strong force for White to reckon with.

Plan D:
Unlike the first three plans that focus only on obtaining a d4-Knight outpost, I prefer the idea of threatening to obtain the Bishop pair advantage and weakening White's pawn structure severely with 14...Ng4, threatening to capture the e3-Bishop. To avoid getting isolated double e-pawns and granting me the Bishop pair advantage, White will have to move his e3-Bishop. If he moves it to g5, then I can gain make the ...Ne6-d4 maneouvre with tempo, and if then Bh4, then ...f6 would lock the Bishop out of the game for some time. If the Bishop retreats to a different square after 14...Ng4, then I can make the ...Ne6-d4 manoeuvre anyway, with the added benefit of having removed a key defender of the d4-square while adding my g2-Bishop as one for myself due to the Knight clearance along the long diagonal. Thus, 14...Ng4 creates a strong positional threat that White can only avoid by allowing me to put my Knight on d4 under better circumstances.

Plan E:
The above four plans make the mistake of not realizing that White's Queenside pawns are in fact targets through having advanced as in the manner that they have. None of these pawns are protected by another pawn, and in particular the c4-pawn is a weakness. Instead of moving my e8-Knight to d4, where it actually does not attack anything (in particular those pawns) through having no cooperation from my other pieces, I believe it serves a better role attacking the c4-pawn (and a4-pawn) from b6. Thus I propose the move 14...Be6, attacking the c4-pawn immediately, followed by the maneouvre ...N8d7-b6. If White protects his pawn(s) with pieces, he will be tying down his pieces to their defense and thus robbing them of more useful roles. If instead White pushes his pawns to avoid the lines of fire, he will be giving himself new backward pawns and new weak squares in their wake.

Kevin Bonham
01-04-2007, 03:20 PM
Not a "solution" as such but some comments: that position's quite interesting and sharper than it first looks. One thing I notice is that if 1...Ne6 then 2.a5!? threatening 3.Bxa7 makes 2...Rad8 unplayable and white has to settle for ...Red8 instead (not that that is necessarily bad). However if 1...Rad8 2.a5 no longer works because 2...Bg4 (tempo) 3.Qe2 Ne6 and now no time for 4.Bxa7 since after ...Nd4! 5.Bxd4 exd4 6.Nxe4 Nxa4 Black has a wonderful position.

Aaron Guthrie
01-04-2007, 05:24 PM
Ok. Here is a position from one of my blitz games. I'm Black, and I actually lost. I can't forget this position because the best move (best in my opinion) could have given me a good game and is not too hard to spot. But I simply did not think long enough to find it. Of course, the opening went out of book early, so you won't find this position in a database.But you will find similar positions. White has misplayed this (the bishop is on c2, he has prematurely started a queenside push) so Bg4, Ne6, Rad8 should all lead to a good game for black in my opinion. My pick at the moment is Rad8.

andytoh
02-04-2007, 02:12 AM
I'm not posting my solution yet. Because apparently, 2089 FIDE Phobetor likes 14...Bg4 best and he should look at the remarks here (I'm not saying he is wrong). I'm trying to convince him to join this thread.

Kevin Bonham
02-04-2007, 02:50 AM
The line 1...Bg4 2.h3 Rad8! 3. Qe2 Bxf3 4.Qxf3 Ne6 deserves consideration.

andytoh
02-04-2007, 03:41 AM
Black has more than one way to avoid being denied ...Bg4 by h3.

andytoh
02-04-2007, 04:42 AM
Phobetor, nice of you to join. I see your FIDE rating has gone up to 2107. I hope you don't mind me posting some of your thoughts:

Phobetor:
"I would go for the Bg4 plan with Bxf3, followed by Ne6. I don't mind losing Bd7, since after Ne6 it's blocked anyway, and after getting Bd7 out of the way, my rooks can take control of the d-file and support d4 for my knight.
Also, Bg4 and Bxf3 removes the f3 knight off the board, which now covers d4 and thus prevents Nd4 in the near future.
Does White have a queenside attack going? Usually in these positions, white has a so called queenside attack going, but from my own experience I conclude that the queenside attack is only occasionally successfull and/or dangerous. I hardly ever do anything about the pawn storms from my opponents on the queenside, when I play the King's Indian (Attack or Defense).
So I'd say the answer is yes, but my answer to the question "Don't we have to do something about it, then?" would be no."

Phobetor
02-04-2007, 04:48 AM
Andytoh asked me to reply here as well, so here I am :rolleyes:

Yes, I suggested Bg4 on the other forum. Considering the pro's and cons of trading Bd7 for Nf3 gives us that the pro's are that white has less control of the d4 square, that black gets more control of the d-file (without the loss of a tempo after Rad8, Bc8), and that black thus also gets more control over d4 (Rd8 supports d4 as well).

The cons would be that black loses his bishop pair, although it's a closed position, and knights are probably as good as bishops. Another could be that black loses one or two tempos for the moves Bg4 and Bxf3, but after Bg4, black can just leave the bishop there, until white spends a move on moving the queen or playing h3, and only then take f3. So that would make it a loss of one tempo.

I think the pro's outweigh the cons here... Creating a very nice outpost for the knight outweighs the fact that black has to spend a move for that.

And in these positions, the queenside attacks often look more dangerous than they actually are. Black can just sit back, let white play a5, b5, or c5, and just recapture c6 if white takes c6, or play b6 if white plays a6. I don't think the queenside attack is something black should worry about (all he should worry about, is that after Rad8, a7 might drop).

Looking at previous posts, I think my plan is about the same as Kevin Bonham's plan of Rad8 a5 Bg4 Qe2 Ne6... Just a different move order.

Phobetor
02-04-2007, 04:50 AM
Phobetor, nice of you to join. I hope you don't mind me posting some of your thoughts:

Phobetor:
"I would go for the Bg4 plan with Bxf3, followed by Ne6. I don't mind losing Bd7, since after Ne6 it's blocked anyway, and after getting Bd7 out of the way, my rooks can take control of the d-file and support d4 for my knight.
Also, Bg4 and Bxf3 removes the f3 knight off the board, which now covers d4 and thus prevents Nd4 in the near future.
Does White have a queenside attack going? Usually in these positions, white has a so called queenside attack going, but from my own experience I conclude that the queenside attack is only occasionally successfull and/or dangerous. I hardly ever do anything about the pawn storms from my opponents on the queenside, when I play the King's Indian (Attack or Defense).
So I'd say the answer is yes, but my answer to the question "Don't we have to do something about it, then?" would be no."

I started writing my reply here before you posted this post :rolleyes: But yes, that's what I said on the other forum, and I guess it's about the same as my post above :)

andytoh
02-04-2007, 07:36 AM
I'm going to post part of my assessment of plan A at this point for a reason.

Plan A: ...Since central domination generally overshadows an attack on the flank...

Excerpt from my assessment of plan A:
"....You are partially correct in thinking that White is attacking on the Queenside, but it is not all about pawn storms. There are no pawn majorities on the board and symmetric pawn structures generally call more for piece activity than pawn breaks. In light of this, you are correctly trying to activate your most inactive minor piece and it seems logical that White should also be trying to activate his pieces more as well.
Having said this, against the natural 14...Ne6, White can reply with 15.a5(!) Is this an attack on the Queenside? Although one could envision a pawn fork by a later Bxa7, ...Rxa7, b6, or snatching the a7-pawn should the a8-Rook move (since trying to trap the Bishop with ...b6 loses simply to Bxb6), White is also allowing for further piece activation with Na4-c5 when ...b6 is prevented by White's three-fold attack on the b6-square and ...Ne6xc5, Bxc5 is clearly good for White. Another idea for piece activity for White after 15.a5 is b4-b5 (threatening to either win your a7-pawn or obtain a Bishop outpost on b6 with b5-b6), when after ...cxb5, Nxb5, ...Bxb5, cxb5 White's Bishop pair would enjoy a position that is opening up, and if instead you allow Nd6, ...Rd8, Nxe5, then on top of winning a pawn and destroying your hope of obtaining a d4-Knight outpost, White's Knights would become clearly better than your d4-Knight would have been..."

andytoh
02-04-2007, 09:17 AM
I think at this point, I can post my assessment of a bad plan that we have already rejected.

Plan D:
Unlike the first three plans that focus only on obtaining a d4-Knight outpost, I prefer the idea of threatening to obtain the Bishop pair advantage and weakening White's pawn structure severely with 14...Ng4, threatening to capture the e3-Bishop. To avoid getting isolated double e-pawns and granting me the Bishop pair advantage, White will have to move his e3-Bishop. If he moves it to g5, then I can gain make the ...Ne6-d4 maneouvre with tempo, and if then Bh4, then ...f6 would lock the Bishop out of the game for some time. If the Bishop retreats to a different square after 14...Ng4, then I can make the ...Ne6-d4 manoeuvre anyway, with the added benefit of having removed a key defender of the d4-square while adding my g2-Bishop as one for myself due to the Knight clearance along the long diagonal. Thus, 14...Ng4 creates a strong positional threat that White can only avoid by allowing me to put my Knight on d4 under better circumstances.

Assessment of Plan D:
Bad plan. You are too quick to assume that your Bishop pair would be an advantage and that Black's doubled e-pawns would be a serious weakness after ...Nxe3. The position is not open and so you could not claim your Bishop pair to be a real advantage, and White's doubled e-pawns are not susceptible to any real attack from you at the moment, for your own e-pawn provides a good shield for them. You cannot hope to move your e-pawn off the e-file to d4 due to the simple continuation 14...Ng4?! 15.h3 Nxe3 6.fxe3, when the f-file has been opened for the f1-Rook and, more importantly, the d4- square is no longer a weak square for your Knight to land on.
Furthermore, White can reply more actively with 15.Bc5, when nothing stops White from placing his Bishop on d6 (which is weak square deeper in your territory then d4 is in White's), and, after a further c4-c5 if necessary, if you ever manage to put your Knight on d4, then after Nxd4, ...exd4, your d4-pawn really would be in trouble due to the White Bishop's blocking of the d-file. The correct plan prevents such a Bishop manoeuvre from ever materializing.

The position has a symmetric pawn structure, so all the more important is it for us to increase our piece activity while denying our opponent the same.

andytoh
02-04-2007, 01:08 PM
However if 1...Rad8 2.a5 no longer works because 2...Bg4 (tempo) 3.Qe2 Ne6 and now no time for 4.Bxa7 since after ...Nd4! 5.Bxd4 exd4 6.Nxe4 Nxa4 Black has a wonderful position.


The line 1...Bg4 2.h3 Rad8! 3. Qe2 Bxf3 4.Qxf3 Ne6 deserves consideration.


I think my plan is about the same as Kevin Bonham's plan of Rad8 a5 Bg4 Qe2 Ne6... Just a different move order.

Perhaps I didn't type plans B and C clearly enough (and I'm not able to edit it now). Plan B states (or I meant for it to state) that ...Rad8 is played first followed possibly by ...Bg4xf3. Plan C states that ...Bg4xf3 is played and then ...Rad8 possibly after.

Next time, I'll edit my plans more carefully.

Phobetor, are you saying that after playing 14...Bg4 you intend to play ...Rad8 before playing ...Bxf3? If you are, then you are actually choosing plan B, not plan C.

Phobetor
02-04-2007, 08:58 PM
The plans are not the same then. You should make a plan F then, which I think is both different from Plan C and Plan B.

As you meant plan C: Taking f3 right away gives white a tempo, since after 2... Rad8 3. [Q move] Bxf3 4. Qxf3 white has to make two moves with his queen, and after 2... Bxf3 3. Qxf3 Rad8 white can make another move.

Plan B: Playing 1... Rad8 gives white the option not to let black capture on f3; After 1... Rad8 2. [Q move anywhere but e2] Bg4, white can move his knight on f3.

My plan eliminates the option of white moving his knight on f3, since after 1... Bg4 2. Qe1 I take on f3 instead of Rad8.

So (I think) the move order Bg4 followed by Rad8 (or Bxf3) is more accurate than Rad8 followed by Bg4...

andytoh
02-04-2007, 09:32 PM
Ok, plan F is 14...Bg4 15.h3 Rad8 followed by ...Bxf3 then (I'll type it out more descriptively later).

I think plans B and F can simply transpose into each other. If they don't, then it is Black who is deviating. I'll look into a continuation where they don't transpose due to Black's choice of play.

andytoh
02-04-2007, 09:40 PM
After 14...Rad8 15.Qe2 Bg4 16.h2 Bxf3, play transposes into your Plan F.

Fritz actually suggests 15...Ne6?! after 14...Rad8 15.Qe2, which I really don't agree with since ...Bg4 is ruled out.
EDIT: The immediate ...Ne6-d4 might actually work due to the following tactic: Nxd4, ...exd4, Bxd4, ...Ng4! with the an attack on h2 and a discovery by the g7-Bishop. This may help support the belief that B is better than plan F.

I'll look into 14...Rad8 15.a5 Bg4 and 14...Rad8 15.Queen moves to a square other than e2. If these lines fail to do anything good for White, then the scale may again tip towards plan B. Intuitively though, if the Queen moves somewhere to the back rank, it leaves White's Rooks disconnected and in particular cannot double on the d-file later.

It's obvious at this point that only plan B and plan F remain. My original solution was plan B. The question is whether they are really the same or not with best play from both sides, and if they are different, which one is better. I'm still leaning towards my original plan B at this point.

andytoh
03-04-2007, 06:20 AM
Let's get some of the bad plans out of the way first.

Assessment of Plan A:
Black's best chances of seeking an advantage is no doubt based on achieving a Knight outpost on d4 via ...Ne8-d4 and 14...Ne6 certainly seems to be a very natural move in this position. A few of your remarks need to be addressed however. Although having a passed pawn on d4 would be more secure if it were protected by a Black pawn on c5, the push ...c5 (whether backed up by ...b6 or not) weakens the d5-square and so gives White the same opportunity of a creating a Knight outpost as you.
You are partially correct in thinking that White is attacking on the Queenside, but it is not all about pawn storms. There are no pawn majorities on the board and symmetric pawn structures generally call more for piece activity than pawn breaks. In light of this, you are correctly trying to activate your most inactive minor piece and it seems logical that White should also be trying to activate his pieces more as well. Having said this, against the natural 14...Ne6, White can reply with 15.a5! Is this an attack on the Queenside? Although one could envision a pawn fork by a later Bxa7, ...Rxa7, b6, or snatching the a7-pawn should the a8-Rook move (since trying to trap the Bishop with ...b6 loses simply to Bxb6), White is also allowing for further piece activation with Na4-c5 when ...b6 is prevented by White's three-fold attack on the b6-square and ...Ne6xc5, Bxc5 is clearly good for White. Another idea for piece activity for White after 15.a5! is b4-b5 (threatening to either win your a7-pawn or obtain a Bishop outpost on b6 with b5-b6), when after ...cxb5, Nxb5, ...Bxb5, cxb5 White's Bishop pair would enjoy a position that is opening up, and if instead you allow Nd6, ...Rd8, Nxe5, then on top of winning a pawn and destroying your hope of obtaining a d4-Knight outpost, White's Knights would become clearly better than your d4-Knight would have been.
Furthermore, even if White did not have counterplay on the Queenside, the main strategic error in your plan is the lack of preparation for creating your Knight outpost on d4 to begin with. By moving your Knight impulsively to e6 right now, you deny yourself the opportunity to remove a key defender of the d4-square with ...Bg4 followed by ...Bxf3, without which your Knight cannot even land on d4 since White currently has d4 under his control. Thus your plan, though based on a correct idea, is lacking in proper implementation in addition to acknowledgement of possible opponent counterplay.

Assessment of Plan E:
Bad plan. Firstly, you will have wasted much tempo in your proposed manoeuvre since your Knight has just moved ...Nbd7-f8 and now you intend to backtrack with ...N8d7. Obviously the move 14...Be6 stops you from carrying out the ...Ne6-d4 maneoeuvre so unless your plan results in something truly concrete and to your advantage, you will have frittered away the key idea that could have given you an advantage. Let's see what your plan gives up the d4-Knight outpost for:
14...Be6 15.Bb3 N8d7 16.Ng5, attacking your trapped Bishop. At this point, it is White who threatens to give you doubled isolated e-pawns and obtain the Bishop pair. Although a Bishop pair for White is really no more serious than a Bishop pair would have been for you in plan D, here your doubled isolated e-pawns do not give you quite the same benefit as would Black's doubled e-pawns would have from plan D since you would have to spend a tempo to put your Rook on the f-file and your e6-pawn does not protect a square that needed protection. Still the threat of Nxe6 is not that serious, but since your plan was leaning on your attack against White's Queenside using your e6-Bishop, your plan has certainly failed in a major way, and is clearly no compensation for forgoing the ...Ne6-d4 manoeuvre.

Plan C is already inferior to plan F because it loses more tempo than plan F. I'll write up my formal assessment later. Incidentally, this was what I played in the real game:
14...Bg4
was the game continuation.
15.h3 Bxf3?
I played this move instantly in blitz fashion, missing the intermediate move 15...Rad8.
16.Qxf3 Ne6 17.a5
At this point I did not see what White really could do on the Queenside so I simply continued with my plan.
17...Nd4 18.Qd1 Rad8 19.Bd3 a6 20.Na4 Nh5 21.g3 Kh8
I was short on time, and felt White's play on the Queenside was making more progress than mine at the center.
22.Nc5
and White's pieces with help of his strong Knight eventually helped him to win the game.




This leaves us with plans B and plan F. I'm trying to figure out if they actually transpose to each other with best play from both sides, and if they don't, which plan has the main continuation(s) that is best for Black.

andytoh
03-04-2007, 06:46 AM
The main line after plan F seems to be the relatively forced 14...Bg4 15.h3 Rad8 16.Qe2 Bxf3 17.Qxf3 Ne6 18.Ne2 (fighting for the d4-square) Nd4 19.Nxd4 exd4.

In plan B, the main lines after 14...Rad8 15.Qe2, 15.a5, 15.Qe1, 15.Qc1, 15.Qd2?!, seem to all be better than the main line in plan F. In particular 14...Rad8 15.Qe2 may not even transpose into plan F's main line because there may be an improvement in 15...Ne6!?--apparently anti-positional but tactically justified (see my previous post, interestingly even the e8-Rook plays a major role here since it prevents e4-e5 after the ...Ng4 discovery-mate-threat) in creating the Knight outpost, but this time without giving up the Bishop pair or any tempo at all.

It seems to me at this point that my original belief that plan B is best remains. Not only does 14...Rad8 prevent White from generating Queenside counterplay by a4-a5 (not that I'm saying that plan F allows it; I haven't looked at plan F too deeply yet) but it actually does not commit to giving up the Bishop pair and tempo to gain the d4-Knight outpost as plan F does, due to various possible replies by Black after 14...Rad8 that seem to allow Black to get away with bypassing it.

andytoh
03-04-2007, 07:05 AM
Here's a possible continuation after 14...Rad8 15.a5, helping to convince you that 14...Rad8 really does prevent Queenside counterplay by White (which is what made me lose after I followed plan C in the real game--see above).

14...Rad8 15.a5
Perhaps White's only real chance to press for an advantage, now the a7-pawn is truly under attack. [15.Bxa7?? b6; 15.h3?? Bxh3]
15...Bg4 16.Qe2 Ne6 17.Bxa7
[A questionable choice, but
17.h3 Bxf3 18.Qxf3 Nd4
gives Black precisely the position he had hoped for, and Black is clearly better.]
17...Nd4 18.Bxd4 [18.Qd1 Nxf3+] 18...exd4 19.Na4 Nxe4
The symmetry of the pawn structure is now broken, and thanks to Black's central Rooks and Knights, Black makes a successful counterblow in the center against White's attack at the flank. And here we see the e8-Rook playing a role after all! As predicted, Black's passed pawn on d4 will cause Black some serious problems, even without protection from his c-pawn.
20.Rae1 Bxf3 21.gxf3 [21.Qxf3 Nd2
Black's Knight on e4 gives an indication of how strong his d4-Knight could have been.] 21...Ng5
Again, the e8-Rook proves its worth, demonstrating that ...Red8 would not have been as good. White now loses his key defending piece, and White's King will now be in trouble.
22.Qxe8+ Rxe8 23.Rxe8+ Bf8 24.Bd1 Kg7 25.c5 Qf4 26.Kg2 h5
Threatening a mating attack by ...h4-h3. Even though White actually has the greater material advantage, he is completely lost.
27.h3 Qh4 28.Rh1 Ne6 29.Kf1
[Threatening to win at once with
29.-- Qg5+ 30.Kf1 Qd2 31.Kg2 Nf4+]
29...Qf4
Threatening ...Qd2, ...d3, ...Nf4. White should resign.
0-1

andytoh
03-04-2007, 07:39 AM
This variation should show you that after 14...Rad8 15.Qe2, Black can do even better than transposing into plan F:

14...Rad8 15.Qe2 Ne6!?
[15...Bg4 16.h3 Bxf3 17.Qxf3 Ne6 18.Ne2 Nd4 transposes into plan F]
16.Rfd1
Black can proceed in the same way after 16.Rad1.
[Black now threatens immediately to get his Knight outpost: 16.-- Nd4 17.Nxd4?? (17.Bxd4?? exd4 18.Nxd4 Ng4! 19.Nf3 Bxc3) 17...exd4 18.Bxd4 Ng4! 19.e5 Bxe5 20.Bxe5 Rxe5 21.Qf3 Re3
winning the Queen.]
16...Ng4 17.Bd2 Nd4
And Black has obtained his d4-Knight outpost without having to give up his Bishop pair or tempo as in plan F.
18.Nxd4??
loses outright to
18...exd4 19.Nb1 Qxh2+ 20.Kf1 Qh1# 0-1

Similar analysis holds for other Queen moves by White after 14...Rad8.

By the way, 14...Ne6 immediately does not work in the same way as in the above variation. Though after 15.a5, it may not seem necessarily that bad that ...Red8 is played instead of ...Rad8 (to avoid losing the a7-pawn), but without ...a5 available Black's Rook has little to do on a8. Furthermore, the continuation after 14...Rad8 (my previous post) shows that Black actually would like to have a Rook on e8 after all. Without the Rook on e8, the above variation (18...Ng4! 19.e5 Bxe5 20.Bxe5 Rxe5 21.Qf3 Re3, winning the Queen) obviously does not work. It is better to play 14...Bg4 before ...Ne6 instead of 14...Ne6 now, as Black would then have Rooks on e8 and d8. So my order of preference is B, F, C, A.

Kevin Bonham
04-04-2007, 08:56 AM
This variation should show you that after 14...Rad8 15.Qe2, Black can do even better than transposing into plan F:

I checked over this last night and agree that ...Rad8 is most likely best.

andytoh
04-04-2007, 09:08 AM
Ok, time for a positon that is not so complicated. We can now soar in the clouds as we ponder over this position.

Black to move.

andytoh
04-04-2007, 09:09 AM
Plan A:
In this position I have an unobstructed Bishop pair that is better than White's Bishop and Knight, especially since White's Bishop is bad. My light-squared Bishop is particularly strong, for it looks down the open long diagonal and has no piece that can challenge it. However, in turn White has play down the d-file where currently he has pressure against my backward d-pawn. White's pressure against my d-pawn is also preventing me from castling Kingside, which is something I really need to do in order to get my other Rook into play. Since I cannot advance my d-pawn due to White's e5-pawn, I will instead obstruct White's pressure along the d-file with 17...Bd5. Not only does this put an end to my problem with the backward d-pawn and thus allow me to castle and get my other Rook into action, my Bishop would be placed on a secure stronghold from which my good Bishop will become even stronger and even threaten to capture on a2 in some lines.

Plan B:
I believe that most of my play is on the Queenside where I have a space advantage. Countering White's play down the d-file is my own play down the c-file, and in particular White's c3-pawn is a target that I wish to focus on. Without the c3-pawn, White would have to contend with my Rook jumping onto his second rank with ...Rc2 and attacking his a- and b-pawns. I thus elect to play 17...b4, which would leave White with an unpleasant decision. If he captures on b4, I activate my dark-squared Bishop by recapturing on b4 (thus rendering both my Bishops very active), and pinning White's Knight after Nc3, and possibly allowing my Rook to land on c2 sometime later. On the other hand, allowing my pawn to capture on c3 forces White to recapture with his Knight (since bxc3 leaves White with a very weak pawn on c3 and another weak pawn on a2) and I again activate my dark-squared Bishop with ...Bb4, pinning the Knight on c3. Finally, protecting the c3 pawn with 18.Rc1 takes the pressure off from my d-pawn, thus allowing me to castle immediately and get my other Rook to participate in my Queenside play.

Plan C:
I believe that White's Kingside space and his threat of f4-f5 must be dealt with before I pursue any play on the Queenside. The move f4-f5 not only increases White's Kingside space and opens the f-file for his Rook, but it also opens the c1-h6 diagonal for his Bishop which is currently bad. Thus, I will counter White's plans on the Kingside by playing 17...f5 to prevent f4-f5 directly. If Black removes my f5-pawn with 18.exf6, then after 18...Bxf6, my dark-squared Bishop will be activated along the other long diagonal and help directly in my attack against c3, in the spirit of Plan B. In addition, 17...f5 fights for Kingside space, allowing me to neutralize White's advantage on the Kingside before I commence my Queenside play. The repurcussions arising from keeping Black's Bishop bad and denying activity from White's Rook on the f-file will no doubt cause White problems in making progress as I begin my own operations on the Queenside where White has no similar stifling counterplan.

Phobetor
04-04-2007, 09:21 PM
I'm doubting between B and C here.

Plan B obviously makes sense: Going for a minority attack with b4, leaving white with a weak pawn, is a good plan. Black will have both the advantage of having the half-open file against c3, and controlling the diagonal a8-h1.

Plan C also makes sense: I'm also someone who very much likes total domination, and playing ...f5 would lead to a position where the kingside is closed (if white doesn't take f6), and the queenside is open. Ideally, this leads to the same positions as in plan B, but without giving white the option to do anything useful on the kingside.

The problem with C, however, is that after ...f5 b3, black can't weaken white's pawn structure much more. ...b4 is answered by c4, and c3 is just protected by the knight. It would be hard to make progress.

I'll go for the boring-but-safe line with ...f5.
If exf6, then I think both gxf6 and bxf6 can't be bad for black... He may not have castled, but white has no white boshop, and by playing for example gxf6, the pressure on g2 seems to be more dangerous than the pressure on the black king.
And if not exf6, then hopefully b4 on the next move; if white plays b3, then I guess just Rc7, castle, and hope to get an advantage somewhere on the Qside.

andytoh
04-04-2007, 09:52 PM
Phobetor, you should perhaps create your signature of 2107 FIDE here as well, so that everyone will take your answers seriously.

Let me say that your answer has made my job very difficult again. Silman made no mention of plan C, so I'm going to have to work hard with my argument again, especially since now there is very little tactics involved. My current solution (...f5 leaves Black with a more difficult time getting rid of his backward pawn problem being part of it) may not be convincing enough for Phobetor, and so I will need to write more!

Basil
04-04-2007, 10:11 PM
Phobetor, you should perhaps create your signature of 2107 FIDE here as well, so that everyone will take your answers seriously

Andy, I'm not sure that's necessary or even a sound idea. Two reasons:

1) A number of players on this site are considerably stronger than Phobetor and therefore should he/ she do as you suggest, some may make an inference from the announcement that Phobetor doesn't intend.

2) There is an implication in your suggestion (no offence taken by me) that some people with a lesser rating may not have their answers taken seriously.

Everybody carry on!

Phobetor
05-04-2007, 01:03 AM
Andy, I'm not sure that's necessary or even a sound idea. Two reasons:

1) A number of players on this site are considerably stronger than Phobetor and therefore should he/ she do as you suggest, some may make an inference from the announcement that Phobetor doesn't intend.

2) There is an implication in your suggestion (no offence taken by me) that some people with a lesser rating may not have their answers taken seriously.

Everybody carry on!
For (1): I don't see how it could be bad to add my rating to my signature for that matter... From the fact that I'm 2100-2150, people can conclude that I do know what I'm talking about, but also that they shouldn't take what I say for granted...My posts have mistakes too, else I would already be 2600+.

I'm just stating my ideas, and Andytoh posts the actual answer, or the actual game continuation. I do think readers know they should trust Andytoh more than me, with the answers to these puzzles, even if there's a rating in my signature.

Basil
05-04-2007, 01:22 AM
I don't see how it could be bad to add my rating to my signature for that matter... From the fact that I'm 2100-2150, people can conclude that I do know what I'm talking about
Everything is relative. Your rating is just a point on a scale. I'm concerned that there's an unstated inference re: "knows what he/ she's talking about" that extends to a tacit rating cut-off where supposedly one doesn't know what their talking about.

For instance, would a 1950 player know what they're talking about? What about an 1850 player? Would a 2250 player suggest you don't know what you're talking about? :hmm:

It's all relative. By all means add your rating to your sig. But don't say I didn't try and help if someone calls either of you a pointy-head!

Phobetor
05-04-2007, 02:44 AM
No, of course you can't draw a border between "does know" and "doesn't know"... But the rating gives an indication of how to treat my posts... Readers can judge for themselves how much I know about it.

Basil
05-04-2007, 03:31 AM
No, of course you can't draw a border between "does know" and "doesn't know"...
That's right. Of course you can't! So Andy was wrong IMO to suggest that you post your rating "to show that you know what you're talking about".

You're trying to have a bob each way - just like Andy when he was being evasive.

First you support Andy's proposition that listing a rating "shows we know what we're talking about", then in the next breath you admit that there's really no line that separates those that know and those that don't. But let's not get stuck on the 'line' concept too much.

I ask you directly, does an 1850 player know what they're talking about?

If you say 'yes', I'm going to laugh at you.
If you say 'no', I'm going to laugh at you.
If you refuse to answer, I'm going to laugh at you.
If you answer a different question instead, I'm going to laugh at you.
If you say "it's all relative", I'm going to laugh at you.

Now, what do you say? :P

When you've answered, I might call you a pointy-head!

Phobetor
05-04-2007, 03:43 AM
I ask you directly, does an 1850 player know what they're talking about?

If you say 'yes', I'm going to laugh at you.
If you say 'no', I'm going to laugh at you.
If you refuse to answer, I'm going to laugh at you.
If you answer a different question instead, I'm going to laugh at you.
If you say "it's all relative", I'm going to laugh at you.

Now, what do you say? :P
Do you always laugh at others?

And apparently, because you think you're so funny, let me first laugh at you. Hahaha.

A forum is for discussion... And if you don't agree, you can reply and say so. But don't be childish like this.

andytoh
05-04-2007, 03:59 AM
Whoa! What happened here? Let me explain a bit. I met Phobetor at chessexchange where he puts his FIDE rating as his signature, and I found nothing wrong with that. It caught my eye actually. Since he is new here, I just thought he might want to do the same.

You see, for the past three or so puzzles, Phobetor put alot of life into the puzzles by stating and standing firmly by his point of view and the strategic debates made it all the more interesting. But since he is new here, the others might think that Phobetor is just wierd or something unless he tells us a little bit about himself (e.g. with a signature). For every puzzle I put, Phobetor will say alot, I guarantee you. He will also disagree with me every now and then and even disagree with the original GM annotator. It would be informative to other readers if they knew he was rated 2107 so that they will read carefully his point of view whenever he disagrees with the solution because there is a chance that he is right (as Kevin pointed out, the orginal GM annotator might be wrong).

Going back to the puzzle, before I state my formal assessment of plan C, just let me say a few things without using any variations: 17...f5 leaves Black with a backward d-pawn that is more difficult to remove (and removing it with ...d5 will then leave Black with a backward e-pawn), I don't find plan C to fight for the initiative as much as plan B (due to b2-b3), after 18.exf6 (e.p.) the f4-f5 push may not actually be prevented, leaving the King in the middle with Queens on the board seems unnecessarily risky even if shielded by two pawns considering that plan B fights for the advantage with no risk. These are just some cons of ...f5 that I'm brainstorming. Of course there are pros of ...f5 (as Phobetor stated already) and I'll look carefully at how the pros and cons weigh against each other.

Silman made no mention of 17...f5, and it is possible he is wrong about his support of 17...b4 (he is not a GM after all--though Taimanov who played Black is). I still firmly believe plan B is best. But if we take Phobetor's point of view carefully, we can all have a nice strategic lesson, but it would be good to know that he is a strong player and is making some good points.

andytoh
05-04-2007, 08:41 AM
Let's get Plan A out of the way first:

Your plan is well-motivated but is too passive and gives White the chance to seize the initiative immediately. You have no doubt underestimated White's chances on the Kingside. White has a space advantage on the Kingside and his play there is potentially much more dangerous than your play on the Queenside simply because his play aims at your King. After 17...Bd5? 18.b3 Rc7 19.f5!, White has opened up the c1-h6 diagonal for his Bishop (now no longer bad) and his Queen, allowed his Knight to get in on the Kingside with Nf4(-h5), and his Rook can exercise some authority with play down the f-file or even with the manoevure Rf4-g4. The following continuation should convince you of how dangerous White's play on the Kingside can be if you don't try to seize the initiative immediately:
17...Bd5? 18.b3
Better than the immediate 18.f5.
[18.f5 Rg4 19.Rf2 Bxa2]
18...Rc7 19.f5 f6 [19...0-0?? 20.f6 gxf6 (20...Bd8 21.Bh6) 21.exf6 Bd6 22.Bh6 Re8 23.Qg5+ Kh8 24.Qg7#] 20.Nf4 Rxc3
Black has no choice but to try to mix things up with some complications, but in the end Black ends up in a losing endgame.
[20...Be4 21.fxe6 dxe6 22.exf6
And Black's King is coming under fire. The end is not far away. This shows how dangerous it can be to let White get f4-f5 under way.
22...Bxf6 23.Nh5 Bf5 24.Nxf6+ gxf6 25.Qd4]
21.Nxd5 exd5 22.Bd4 Rc2 23.Rc1 Rxd2 24.Rxc8+ Bd8 25.Bb6 0-0
Black's King has survived the worst, but his endgame is hopeless.
26.Rxd8 Rxd8 27.Bxd8 fxe5 28.f6 gxf6 29.Bxf6 Re2 30.Rf5 d6 31.Be7 d4 32.Bxd6 e4 33.Rf8+ Kg7 34.Rf2 Re1+ 35.Rf1 Re2 36.Be5+ Kg6 37.Bxd4 Rxa2 38.Ra1 Re2 39.Rxa6+
and Black should resign.

This leads us to only plan B (try to fight for the initiative) or plan C (try to stifle White's play on the Kingside first).

Desmond
05-04-2007, 08:43 AM
I ask you directly, does an 1850 player know what they're talking about?No. Not compared to an 1100 player with Rybka.

andytoh
05-04-2007, 11:22 AM
No. Not compared to an 1100 player with Rybka.
In a sharp position, a 1100 player with Rybka can say more than a 1850 player, but in a quiet balanced position the 1850 player would know much more about the nature of the position than the 1100 player with Rybka (whom I doubt can think of a long-term plan as good as the 1850 player since Rybka can't help him much there).

Basil
05-04-2007, 12:19 PM
I see you went for:
c) refuse to answer, and
d) answering a different question


Do you always laugh at others?
Seldom. Only when deserved. Especially for evasive obfuscating dribblers.


And apparently, because you think you're so funny, let me first laugh at you. Hahaha.
Nervous giggle while evading the issue?


A forum is for discussion...
Now, will you answer directly? Do you think an 1850 player knows what he is talking about?

Basil
05-04-2007, 05:54 PM
No. Not compared to an 1100 player with Rybka.
:P It took me a while to latch on!

Desmond
05-04-2007, 06:55 PM
In a sharp position, a 1100 player with Rybka can say more than a 1850 player, but in a quiet balanced position the 1850 player would know much more about the nature of the position than the 1100 player with Rybka (whom I doubt can think of a long-term plan as good as the 1850 player since Rybka can't help him much there).Well, I would say that you are absolutely wrong.

andytoh
05-04-2007, 09:23 PM
Well, I would say that you are absolutely wrong.
Let's suppose we have a position where both sides have two Rooks, a Queen, and a light-squared Bishop. Suppose the the White's central pawns are mainly on dark squares and so his dark-squared Bishop is bad and the position is closed with weak squares in White's camp and so Black's Knight is good. Suppose further and that the pawn structure is symmetric and there are no penetration points for the Rooks. The best long-term plan for Black might be to trade off all the heavy pieces and the light-squared Bishops, make White push more of his pawns onto dark squares, and go into a good Knight vs. bad Bishop endgame.

Suppose further that offering these exchanges is not immediately possible. The 1850 player might be able to think of this long-term plan, but the 1100 will be much less likely to. And Rybka will not help the 1100 player much in coming up with this long-term plan because it can't see far enough to appreciate it (or even think of it). Even if Rybka is strong enough to think of this plan (which I doubt), the 1100 might not know what Rybka is trying to do because Rybka cannot talk to him and the plan is so long-term for the 1100 player to see what is actually happening.

Desmond
05-04-2007, 09:37 PM
<snip>Yes, I agree that if an 1850 player manages to get a clear advantage at some point in the game that he will (maybe) score >50% against Rybka. Getting a clear advantage is the hard bit.

four four two
05-04-2007, 11:29 PM
In a sharp position, a 1100 player with Rybka can say more than a 1850 player, but in a quiet balanced position the 1850 player would know much more about the nature of the position than the 1100 player with Rybka (whom I doubt can think of a long-term plan as good as the 1850 player since Rybka can't help him much there).

Geez, the Rybka you must be using must be total rubbish if it cant out analyse an 1850 player in any position.

Show me a Rybka program that cant see strong 5 move combos and I will show you a person thats using a computer thats ancient...:lol:

Garvinator
06-04-2007, 03:20 AM
I can see the potential for a correspondence game on here between andytoh and someone operating the Rybka program ;)

andytoh
06-04-2007, 03:37 AM
A correspondence game with one side using Rybka vs a real grandmaster is in progress now at chessgames.com: GM Yuri Shulman vs the World. The game just prior to it was The World vs Arno Nickel, and the World won, but that was because team White used Rybka only for analysis, but they did the planning themselves.

andytoh
06-04-2007, 08:32 AM
I'm really beat, and will be taking a bit of a break. Anyone who wants to post his own puzzles, feel free to do so.

Phobetor
06-04-2007, 11:13 PM
I'm really beat, and will be taking a bit of a break. Anyone who wants to post his own puzzles, feel free to do so.
I can post puzzles from my own games, but the only puzzles I can make from my games are tactical puzzles, but the topic is called Strategic Puzzles...

andytoh
07-04-2007, 12:29 AM
Ok. I'm going to try something new.

Many people make the mistake of develop an opening repertoire simply by memorizing lines. Of course, the better way to develop an opening repertoire is to understand the ideas behind each moves as well. Here I'm going to take it a step further and make a strategic puzzle for every position in one single line from my opening repertoire (the Bayonet Attack against the King's Indian Defense).

Now I know that many moves in the opening are a matter of taste. But my puzzles will have one good move and the others I assure you will be inferior. I'm also trying to update my opening knowledge since it's been really out of date. I've used John Nunn's book on the Main Line King's Indian as reference, but he doesn't say much in his book since much of his pages are just a database dump (or appears to be).

Let's start from move 5. My puzzles will come quite quickly since the opening theory ends at move 30 in this line. Don't just choose the best move because "it's the book move". Try to understand the idea behind the move and why the other moves are bad.

White to move.

andytoh
07-04-2007, 12:30 AM
Plan A: Develop the Kingside and prepare to castle with 5.Nf3. This also has the benefit of preventing Black from striking at White's big pawn center with 5...e5. White's Knight's will then control all the important central squares.

Plan B: Develop the dark-squared Bishop with 5.Bf4. On top of preventing 5...e5, this move, together with Nf3, also helps to prevent Black from putting a Knight on e5 after ...Nbd7, ...c5, d5, ...Ne5.

Basil
07-04-2007, 12:37 AM
Go plan A!

Plan B
== leaves the Queenside as weak as [analogy to weak men deleted] allowing counter-play
== the bishop as a target for the knight
== the bishop will stand in front his own k-side pieces
== is premature leaving His Royal Gorgeousness in the middle for longer than necessary (although no immediate hurry)

Garvinator
07-04-2007, 12:44 AM
What about Plan C, Plan D and many other plans in this position.

Plan C: Play f4, called the four pawn attack.

Plan D: Play f3, called the Samisch

Plan E: Fianchetto kingside

These are but just a few choices from this position. There is no 'better' move at this stage.

Basil
07-04-2007, 12:49 AM
I think the point is that there is a 'shocker' Garvo. No doubt I can't even get that right.

andytoh
07-04-2007, 12:59 AM
Solution:


Plan A:
Correct. White develops his Kingside in the speediest manner and prevents 5...e5 due to 5...e5?? 6.dxe5 dxe5 7.Qxd8+ Kxd8 8.Nxe5 Nxe4 9.Nxf7+ Ke8 10.Nxe4 Kxf7 11.Ng5+ Ke7 12.Bd3± , Lalic (2515) - Pages, Olot 1992.

Plan B:
Bad plan. Firstly, Black does not actually lose a pawn after 5...e5 due to 6.dxe5 Nh5 7.Be3 Bxe5. You should see now the the Bishop is not ideally placed at this stage of the game. It is usually not clear where the Bishops belong so early in the game, whereas for the Knights it's usually much easier to decide. The Bishop on f4 is clearly subject to tempo attacks by ...Nh5 (which wouldn't cost Black a tempo in light of his plan of playing ...f5 should the usual King's Indian central pawn wedge form).
After 5.Bf4?! 0-0 6.Nf3 Nbd7 7.Be2 Nh5 8.Be3 e5 9.d5 Nf4 10.0-0, Black can trade his Knight for your light-squared Bishop if he so fancies, since you haven't gotten in Re1 in time. Furthermore, should you later find the need to remove Black's f4-Knight with Bxf4, you will have wasted two tempi with the moves Bf4 followed by Be3. This resulting position is clearly inferior to the popular line 5.Nf3 0-0 6.Be2 e5 7.0-0 Nc6 8.d5 Ne7 9.b4 Nh5 10.Re1 Nf4 11.Bf1, where White is assured of keeping his light-squared Bishop and has not wasted any tempo.

andytoh
07-04-2007, 01:01 AM
What about Plan C, Plan D and many other plans in this position.

Plan C: Play f4, called the four pawn attack.

Plan D: Play f3, called the Samisch

Plan E: Fianchetto kingside

These are but just a few choices from this position. There is no 'better' move at this stage.

I said in my post already:

Now I know that many moves in the opening are a matter of taste. But my puzzles will have one good move and the others I assure you will be inferior.

Basil
07-04-2007, 01:02 AM
http://i4.photobucket.com/albums/y105/scene66/smilies/emoticondancer.gif

andytoh
07-04-2007, 01:23 AM
5.Nf3 0-0.

White to move.

andytoh
07-04-2007, 01:24 AM
Plan A:
5...0-0 has enabled Black to play his desired center-striking 6...e5. White should proceed with straightforward Kingside development with 6.Be2 followed by 7.0-0. White's plan concerning what to do with his big pawn center will depend on what Black does.

Plan B:
Instead of developing passively with 6.Be2, White should develop more actively with 6.Bd3, which adds more protection to the important e4-pawn, makes the thematic ...f5 more difficult, and aims more at Black's Kingside.

Plan C:
The timing is now correct for Bf4. After 6.Bf4, Black truly cannot play 6...e5 now because, thanks to the f3-Knight, after 6...e5?? 7.dxe5 Nh5 8.Bg5, White gains a tempo and so keeps his extra pawn. All other 6th moves, allow Black to strike at White's imposing pawn center with 7...e5.

andytoh
07-04-2007, 03:51 AM
Solution:

Plan A:
Consistent with the previous plan and correct.

Plan B:
Developing this Bishop to d3 now would be a mistake. After 6.Bd3 Bg4, Black would soon gain control of the d4-square following moves such as ...Nfd7 and ...Nc6 to come. Let's see:
6.Bd3?!
This more active-looking developing move appears to add more protection to White's big pawn center by adding more protection to the e4-pawn, but in actuality it weakens the d4-pawn due to
6...Bg4 7.h3
(7.Be2 is an admission that 6.Bd3 was bad.)
7...Bxf3 8.Qxf3 Nc6 9.Be3 Nd7 10.Ne2?? Nde5! (forking Bishop and Queen) 11.dxe5 Nxe5 12.Qg3 Nxd3+
winning two pawns and leaving White with weak Queenside isolated pawns. Black has won almost every game from this position.

Plan C:
Your plan has the same problems as on the previous move. Though you are correct in asserting that 6...e5 is prevented, nothing stops Black from renewing the ...e5 idea with ...Nbd7, and after ...Nh5, Bg3, ...e5, Black has been able to place his Knight on f4 more quickly than in the main lines. You cannot stop or hinder Black from striking at your center with ...e5, and so instead of wasting moves trying to stop it, you should simply continue your development while deciding what to do with your center when Black plays his ...e5.

andytoh
07-04-2007, 04:02 AM
6.Be2 e5.

White to move.

andytoh
07-04-2007, 04:03 AM
Plan A:
Before White castles, he should first take time off to prevent ...Bg4 with 7.h3 since White's d4-pawn is aready under pressure by Black's e5-pawn and dark-squared Bishop and the removal of the f3-Knight would make the defense of d4 more difficult. Stopping ...Bg4 is a good strategy for preserving the central pawn mass, which is White's major advantage at this stage.

Plan B:
White should continue with his plan and castle. Black will no doubt attempt to put pressure on White's pawn center but White has already been prepared to deal with it from the onset. In particular, after the anticipated 7...Nc6 (threatening to win a pawn with 8...exd4 9.Nxd4 Nxe4 10.Nxe4 Nxd4), White can close the center with 8.d5, gaining more central space, and rendering the g7-Bishop temporarily inactive along the long diagonal.

Plan C:
White should give himself a nice Maroczy Bind formation with 7.dxe5 dxe5 8.Qxd8 (not 8.Nxe5 Nxe4!) Rxd8. The exchange of Queens does not improve Black's defensive task much because of White's greater pawn presence due to his central pawns on c4 and e4 (as opposed to Black's central pawn only e5 that is making his King's Indian Bishop bad).

Aaron Guthrie
07-04-2007, 05:08 AM
Plan A:
Before White castles, he should first take time off to prevent ...Bg4 with 7.h3 since White's d4-pawn is aready under pressure by Black's e5-pawn and dark-squared Bishop and the removal of the f3-Knight would make the defense of d4 more difficult. Stopping ...Bg4 is a good strategy for preserving the central pawn mass, which is White's major advantage at this stage.

Plan B:
White should continue with his plan and castle. Black will no doubt attempt to put pressure on White's pawn center but White has already been prepared to deal with it from the onset. In particular, after the anticipated 7...Nc6 (threatening to win a pawn with 8...exd4 9.Nxd4 Nxe4 10.Nxe4 Nxd4), White can close the center with 8.d5, gaining more central space, fixing Black's backward d-pawn, and rendering the g7-Bishop temporarily inactive along the long diagonal.

Plan C:
White should give himself a nice Maroczy Bind formation with 7.dxe5 dxe5 8.Qxd8 (not 8.Nxe5 Nxe4!) Rxd8. The exchange of Queens does not improve Black's defensive task much because of White's greater pawn presence due to his central pawns on c4 and e4 (as opposed to Black's central pawn only e5 that is making his King's Indian Bishop bad).Gheez dude have you got something against Indian Bishops.

I always thought that c4-e4 can only be called a Maroczy Bind when it actually has the function of holding off a d5 break (hence the term bind.)

In plan B, that aint no backward pawn.

Anyway, nitpicks aside de5 and 0-0 are both good moves.

Garrett
07-04-2007, 05:54 AM
6.Be2 e5.

White to move.

You're kidding !

This position is a basic position from the King's Indian.

andytoh
07-04-2007, 06:40 AM
In plan B, that aint no backward pawn.

Oops. I jumped ahead with the c4-c5xd6 thought too early and called it a backward pawn.


You're kidding !

This position is a basic position from the King's Indian.
Ok, bad idea then.

Desmond
07-04-2007, 09:18 AM
Some more plans for white in this position:

D. 7.g4 - I never liked the g-pawn anyway, and would probably blunder it sooner or later. I might as well give it away now, especially since black can capture it while simultaneously developing a piece.

E. 7.Bh6 - This move has the dual purpose of developing by bishop and connecting my rooks. I don't think that Black can capture since this will irretrievably weaken the h8-square.

F. 7.Nxe5 - preventing ...Bg4 and gaining a pawn preponderance in the centre.

andytoh
07-04-2007, 10:20 AM
Alright, I get the point.

Phobetor
08-04-2007, 12:23 AM
Here's a position from my own game.

http://t.laarhovenveldhoven.com/old/fen2img.php?r1bq1rk1/1p2bp1p/p2pppn1/8/3NP3/1BN5/PP1Q1PPP/R4RK1

I was black and I was to move. I probably messed up earlier already, since black's position isn't too great. Here I was doubting between two plans. I'm not sure either of them was right, but what do you say?

Plan A: Black wants to develop quickly, since he's already behind in development. There are two pieces undeveloped (Bc8 and Ra8), so the most logical move is 14... Bd7, possibly followed by 15... Rc8 or maybe 15... Bc6. White will probably play f4-f5 soon, but I can answer 15. f4 with 15... e5, followed by either 16... exf4, or 16... f5.

Plan B: White has alot of space, a good position, and black only has the compensation of a pawn for it. I'd gladly give the pawn back if I then get a share in the center, and get to develop my pieces without worrying about the backward d-pawn. Therefore I choose for 14... d5 15. exd5 e5 16. Nde2 f5.

Plan C: I don't like Plan A nor Plan B, so I'll post my own plan below.

Aaron Guthrie
08-04-2007, 12:46 AM
Plan A: Black wants to develop quickly, since he's already behind in development. There are two pieces undeveloped (Bc8 and Ra8), so the most logical move is 14... Bd7, possibly followed by 15... Rc8 or maybe 15... Bc6. White will probably play f4-f5 soon, but I can answer 15. f4 with 15... e5, followed by either 16... exf4, or 16... f5.15...e5 looks dubious, plus 15. f4 e5 16.f5! ed4 17.fg6 dc3 18.Qh6! hg6 19.Qg6 Kh8 20. Qh6 Kg8 21.Rf3 wins and is a forced line, unless I am missing something.

andytoh
08-04-2007, 01:13 AM
Some preliminary considerations: White is clearly eyeing Black's weakened Kingside. There is no doubt that White wants to play f4-f5; the e6-pawn is preventing the c3-Knight from jumping into the attack with Nd5. Black should come up with a plan that ideally addresses this while improving his development. With that in mind, a good Queen move for Black (not necessarily right now though) would be ...Qb6, as that would pin the e4-Knight (possibly winning it with ...e5 after f4). Let's see:

14...Qb6!?
A)15.f4? e5 16.Nd5 Qxd4+ wins
B)15.Rad1 Ne5 (intending ...Nc6 or the simple ...Bd7, ...Rc8) 16.f4 Nc6 17.Kh1 Nxd4 18.Qxd4 Qxd4 19.Rxd4 and Black's upcoming endgame looks rosy.
C)15.Rac1 Ne5 (again intending ...Nc6 or the simple ...Bd7, ...Rc8)
I don't think the Queen should mind Na4, since after ...Qa7 (maintaining the pin) and ...b5 Black has a decent position. The Queen move ...Qb6 (together with ...Bd7) connects the Rooks and thus prepares to square matters on the c-file, knowing the mass exchanges give Black the endgame odds by way of his extra pawn (which I personally would not be so quick to give back at this moment).
Of course, White can unpin his Knight, but his f4-f5 plan will not work as he wants: 15.Kh1 Ne5 16.f4 Nc6 17.Rad1 Nxd4 18.Qxd4 Qxd4 19.Rxd4 and again the endgame looks good for Black.

Phobetor
08-04-2007, 01:47 AM
Mangafranga: The line you give is indeed good for white, but black doesn't have to take d4 on move 16. He can also play 16... Nf4. I'm not saying that's good for black, but maybe it's "keepable".

Andytoh: I see the plan of e5 after f4, so the d4 knight is pinned, but what if white just plays 15. Kh1, followed by 16. f4. Then again you have to choose beween plans A and B (and C): just allow 16. f4, play 15... Ne5 16. f4 Nc6, or prevent 16. f5 with 15... d5 (or something else). What's your plan after 14... Qb6 15. Kh1?

Aaron Guthrie
08-04-2007, 02:09 AM
Mangafranga: The line you give is indeed good for white, but black doesn't have to take d4 on move 16. He can also play 16... Nf4. I'm not saying that's good for black, but maybe it's "keepable".If you have to play Nf4 then e5 is (even more) clearly a mistake. It doesn't even look holdable to me. White's position is just huge. I do not see how e5 improved your position, you just weakened d5 and opened the diagonal for Whites light square Bishop. Furthermore that Knight on f4 helps White kill you off. I play Nc2, then g3 and after Nh5 I play Qh6-g4-Rf3-Rh3-Qxh7#

Basil
08-04-2007, 02:11 AM
There will be a HADBBA for biggest Pointy Head.

BTW rare you prepared to answer whether an 1850 player knows what he is talking about or do you intend persisting with evasion? I have clearly shown your position entirely untenable.

Phobetor
08-04-2007, 03:29 AM
If you have to play Nf4 then e5 is (even more) clearly a mistake. It doesn't even look holdable to me. White's position is just huge. I do not see how e5 improved your position, you just weakened d5 and opened the diagonal for Whites light square Bishop. Furthermore that Knight on f4 helps White kill you off. I play Nc2, then g3 and after Nh5 I play Qh6-g4-Rf3-Rh3-Qxh7#

Sure, 14... Bd7 15. f4 e5 16. f5 Nf4 looks terrible for black... But I didn't say you have to go for plan A. If you have a better move after 15. f4, instead of ...e5, feel free to post it. I just think that after 14... Bd7 15. f4, black has to play 15... e5; else white will just play 16. f5, and to me that looks at least as bad as playing 15... e5 16. f5 Nf4.

Also, consider plan B: I haven't seen any comments on that plan, but to me it seemed worth considering.

And, of course, maybe you have another, even better plan. This is just a position from one of my games, so I can't say the move I played in the game was certainly the best move.

andytoh
08-04-2007, 03:48 AM
Andytoh: I see the plan of e5 after f4, so the d4 knight is pinned, but what if white just plays 15. Kh1, followed by 16. f4. Then again you have to choose beween plans A and B (and C): just allow 16. f4, play 15... Ne5 16. f4 Nc6, or prevent 16. f5 with 15... d5 (or something else). What's your plan after 14... Qb6 15. Kh1?
I already posted this case (5 minutes before you posted your response). You can try a different order of moves:
14...Ne5 15.f4 Nc6 16.Rad1 Qb6 17.Kh1 Nxd4 18.Qxd4 Qxd4 19.Rxd4, with the exact same outcome, and of course the mass exchanges are in Black's interest in light of his undeveloped pieces, extra pawn, and the Kingside attack that White is hoping for. However White responds, this plan puts a big damper on White's plan of f4-f5, while aiding in Black's development.

My plan is based on ...Qb6 and ...Ne5-Nc6 against the (pinned) d4-Knight, rather than ...e5 (which weakens the square d5 that f4-f5 aims precisely to weaken).

Aaron Guthrie
08-04-2007, 04:13 AM
Sure, 14... Bd7 15. f4 e5 16. f5 Nf4 looks terrible for black... But I didn't say you have to go for plan A. If you have a better move after 15. f4, instead of ...e5, feel free to post it. I just think that after 14... Bd7 15. f4, black has to play 15... e5; else white will just play 16. f5, and to me that looks at least as bad as playing 15... e5 16. f5 Nf4.The language in your original post read to me as though you thought e5 was a good move. The kind of move that would want to make White not consider playing f4. My point was that it is just a bad move on principle, so I don't know why someone consider a plan that has this move as its justification.


Also, consider plan B: I haven't seen any comments on that plan, but to me it seemed worth considering.It certainly is interesting. Since you seem to think you are in a worse position to begin with it makes sense. It changes the character of the position, fights for the center.


And, of course, maybe you have another, even better plan. This is just a position from one of my games, so I can't say the move I played in the game was certainly the best move.The main problem I see at this point is that f4-f5 is very strong. Stronger than in analogous positions in the poisoned pawn since White has a Bishop on b3, and Blacks Knight is on g6 which gives the f5 move with tempo. andytoh's lines show the maneuver Ne5-Nc6. This maneuver solves the problem of e6 since on c6 the knight should (re)move an attacker of e6. So I would suggest playing Ne5 right away, followed by Nc6. Then just develop and ask White if he can mate Black (and I do not think he can) or even if he can find compensation for the pawn.

Oh I see andytoh posted Ne5 as a suggestion while I was writing this post. Essentially I agree with the principle of his line. The only point of contention is that I do not want to play Qb6. I will also mention that of course White would not allow the Queen exchange.

andytoh
08-04-2007, 04:24 AM
Oh I see andytoh posted Ne5 as a suggestion while I was writing this post. Essentially I agree with the principle of his line. The only point of contention is that I do not want to play Qb6. I will also mention that of course White would not allow the Queen exchange.
I believe ...Qb6 fits in very well with 14...Ne5-c6. After the Knight exchange, White can hardly avoid the Queen exchange (e.g. Qf2,...Nxd4, Rxd4 instead of unpinning with ...Kh1 would leave the Rook strategically pinned). Besides, Black also needs to catch up in development, and ...Qb6, ...Bd7 connects the Rooks with ...Rc8 to come.

Aaron Guthrie
08-04-2007, 04:30 AM
I believe ...Qb6 fits in very well with 14...Ne5-c6. After the Knight exchange, White can hardly avoid the Queen exchange (e.g. Qf2,...Nxd4, Rxd4 instead of unpinning with ...Kh1 would leave the Rook strategically pinned). Besides, Black also needs to catch up in development, and ...Qb6, ...Bd7 connects the Rooks with ...Rc8 to come. 14...Ne5 15.f4 Nc6 16.Nxc6 or 16.Nf3 or 16.Nc2 or 16.Kh1

14...Qb6 15.Kh1 Ne5 16.f4 Nc6 17.Nxc6 or 17.Nf3 or 17.Nc2

ETA- A couple of the options I give are probably worse than the other options I give, but my point is White just shouldn't allow an ending. But even the worse options I give are probably better than an ending a pawn down.

andytoh
08-04-2007, 04:42 AM
14...Ne5 15.f4 Nc6
16.Rad1 Qb6 and Black is better 17.Kh1 [17.Qf2 Nxd4 18.Rxd4 Bd7] 17...Nxd4 18.Qxd4 Qxd4 19.Rxd4
16.Kh1 Qb6 17.Rad1 Qxd4 18.Qxd4 Nxd4 19.Rxd4 Black is better;
16.Nxc6? bxc6 Black clearly is better;
16.Nce2 Qb6 Black is better, threatening ...e5;
16.Nf3 Qb6+ 17.Kh1 Na5 snatches the annoying Bishop, Black is better

Even if there is no Queen exchange, ...Qb6 at least aids in Black's development (while Kh1 costs White a tempo).

Aaron Guthrie
08-04-2007, 05:05 AM
14...Ne5 15.f4 Nc6
16.Rad1 Qb6 and Black is better 17.Kh1 [17.Qf2 Nxd4 18.Rxd4 Bd7] 17...Nxd4 18.Qxd4 Qxd4 19.Rxd4
16.Kh1 Qb6 17.Rad1 Qxd4 18.Qxd4 Nxd4 19.Rxd4 Black is better;
16.Nxc6? bxc6 Black clearly is better;
16.Nce2 Qb6 Black is better, threatening ...e5;
16.Nf3 Qb6+ 17.Kh1 Na5 snatches the annoying Bishop, Black is better

Even if there is no Queen exchange, ...Qb6 at least aids in Black's development (while Kh1 costs White a tempo).Kh1 is often a useful move. I suspect the Queen is going to be better placed on a5. I also suspect other moves might be more immediately useful. In any case quibbles over the Queen position aside, there is the more important matter of a possible ending.

I am quite surprised that you are giving the ending lines better evaluations than the middle game lines. In the ending you are just down a pawn with no compensation. In the middle game it may be true that you do not have enough compensation, but at least you will have some.

I would give 16.Nxc6, 16.Nf3, as being probably best and 16.Nc2 as being interesting. I would expect at least 16.Nxc6 and 16.Nf3 as leading to positions with some sort of compensation for the pawn.

As a sample line 16.Nf3 Qb6+ 17.Kh1 Na5 18.f5 Nxb3 19.axb3 Bd7 20.Qh6 Rac8 21.Ne5!! ++--

ETA-Actually it is only clear that you give one middlegame line a worse eval than some ending lines. So the main point is, White never should accept the endgames you offer. He should choose what option he thinks gives the best chance of middlegame compensation. I do not know if you agree or disagree with that from what you have said.

andytoh
08-04-2007, 05:11 AM
I suspect the Queen is going to be better placed on a5.
On a5, the Queen interferes with ...Na5 which will be useful in some lines, and the diagonal b6-g1 is clearly the better diagonal.

Of course White should stay in the middlegame, and ...Qb6 after 14...Ne5-c6 gives White a harder time doing so.

Aaron Guthrie
08-04-2007, 05:25 AM
On a5, the Queen interferes with ...Na5 which will be useful in some lines, and the diagonal b5-g1 is clearly the better diagonal.I am not at all convinced by your argument. Firstly there are good reasons to have the Queen on a5, it interferes with the moving of the c3 Knight, it can move to e5 in the case of f5, it can also possibly make a run to the Kingside. Secondly I said I consider Kh1 to be a useful move. Thirdly I said it can be useful to make other moves before moving the Queen. So for instance if you like Na5 you can play it before you move the Queen, of course then you wouldn't be able to play Qa5. In any case I prefer Qa5 to be (at least sometimes) a better spot for the Queen. Just as importantly I think there is no reason to commit it at this point.


Of course White should stay in the middlegame, and ...Qb6 after 14...Ne5-c6 gives White a harder time doing so.There is a line where I will say Qb6 is best. After 16.Kh1 Black must play Qb6 to force white to move the Knight. However in any other case, like moving the Knight on move 16 which I said I thought was best Qb6 is not making it harder for White to stay in the middlegame.

andytoh
08-04-2007, 05:29 AM
Ok, so best is 14...Ne5 15.f4 Nc6, and where Black should place his Queen (either b6 or a5) depends on what White does after that. I suspect that Black will end up playing ...Qb6 later on with best play from White. But if White presses forth his Kingside attack (not necessarily the best thing for him to do right now), ...Qa5 might be necessary.

Phobetor
08-04-2007, 06:18 AM
The language in your original post read to me as though you thought e5 was a good move. The kind of move that would want to make White not consider playing f4. My point was that it is just a bad move on principle, so I don't know why someone consider a plan that has this move as its justification.
Well yes and no: No, I didn't think it's a good move, but yet, I did think it's the best move in that situation. But as I said before, if you say 15... e5 is bad after 14... Bd7 15. f4, then give me a better move! :)

Let me give you the game continuation, which is based on plan B. I was already in some time trouble, so the moves aren't all too great.

14... d5 15. exd5 e5 16. Nde2 f5 17. Rad1 Bd6 18. f4 e4 19. Kh1 Re8 20. g3 Qf6 21. Qd4 Qe7 22. Rc1 Bc5 23. Qc4 Bd6 24. Nd4 Bd7

http://t.laarhovenveldhoven.com/old/fen2img.php?r3r1k1/1p1bqp1p/p2b2n1/3P1p2/2QNpP2/1BN3P1/PP5P/2R2R1K

Even though I wasted some tempos earlier, I think black's position is fine here.

andytoh
08-04-2007, 06:33 AM
Looks like Phobetor disagrees with me and mangafranga. Though Phobetor's continuation denies White the moves Nd5 and f4-f5, I would not have parted with the pawn at that instant.

Aaron Guthrie
08-04-2007, 06:44 AM
Well yes and no: No, I didn't think it's a good move, but yet, I did think it's the best move in that situation. But as I said before, if you say 15... e5 is bad after 14... Bd7 15. f4, then give me a better move! :)If you want to be picky I am up for it. Like I said before, I thought you were justifying Bd7 on the basis of e5. But of course you cannot justify one move on the basis of a future bad move you are forced to play. Rereading what you originally said-

Plan A: Black wants to develop quickly, since he's already behind in development. There are two pieces undeveloped (Bc8 and Ra8), so the most logical move is 14... Bd7, possibly followed by 15... Rc8 or maybe 15... Bc6. White will probably play f4-f5 soon, but I can answer 15. f4 with 15... e5, followed by either 16... exf4, or 16... f5.and it still looks to me like e5 is used as a justification for Bd7. It still looks to me like you were saying that White should not play f4 because of e5, note your use of the word "but". You also make mention of the follow up of e5 as "16...exf4, or 16... f5". You do not mention the follow up to e5 is getting a shocking position.

Maybe I should have been clearer and said that I thought Bd7 was junk if you need to play such a shocking move as e5 after it. But maybe you should also have been clearer about the implications of having to play e5.

Aaron Guthrie
08-04-2007, 06:57 AM
Looks like Phobetor disagrees with me and mangafranga.Not much. I am guessing Ne5 is objectively better, but still, there isn't much in it. As I have already said d5 changes the character of the position (so now White doesn't have the same type of opportunities on the Kingside, and Black might even be able to fight for the initiative), and it fights for the center. d5 is an interesting and reasonable move.

andytoh
08-04-2007, 07:30 AM
In the game
Tseshkovsky - Kasparov, Tbilisi 1978

1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nd2 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Bf5 5.Ng3 Bg6 6.h4 h6 7.h5 Bh7 8.Nf3 Nd7 9.Bd3 Bxd3 10.Qxd3 Qc7 11.Bd2 Ngf6 12.0-0-0 e6 13.Ne4 0-0-0 14.g3 c5 15.Bf4 c4 16.Qe2 Qc6 17.Nxf6 gxf6 18.d5 exd5 19.Nd4 Qa6 20.Kb1 Bd6 21.Qf3 Bxf4 22.Qxf4 Ne5 23.Qf5+ Kb8 24.f4 Nd7 25.Qxd5 Ne5 26.Qe4 Ng4 27.Qe2 Qb6 28.c3 f5 29.Rhe1 Qc5 30.Qe7 Qxe7 31.Rxe7 Rhe8 32.Rde1 Rxe7 33.Rxe7 Nf6 34.Rxf7 Nxh5 35.Nxf5 Rd3 36.Rf8+ Kc7 37.Rg8 Kd7 38.Rg6 b5 39.a3 Rd1+ 40.Ka2 Rg1 41.Rd6+ Kc7 42.Rxh6 Nxg3 43.Nd4 Ne4 44.Nxb5+ Kd7 45.Rh7+ Ke6 46.Rxa7 Nc5 47.Nd4+ Kd6 48.Nf5+ Kd5 49.Ne3+ Ke4 50.Rc7 Nd3 51.Re7+ 1-0

White made a similar pawn sacrifice on d5 with the move 18.d5! Indeed, by making Black occupy the d5-square in the only ineffectual way (i.e. with a pawn) it changed the entire character of the position, and White seized the initiative and even gained the pawn back with the better ending. However, the threats that Black was making via the d5-square and with pawn advances on the Queenside (e.g. ...c3, ...b5-b4, ...Nb6-d5, ...Rd5-a5) were much more serious than that by White on the Kingside in Phobetor's game. In Phobetor's position, I only would have given back the pawn if White's threats were more serious, but after 14...Ne5-c6, ...Qb6/Qa5, White does not seem to have as much initiative as Black would have gotten by Kasparov in the above game had White not sacrificed his d-pawn.

Nevertheless, 14...d5 does indeed destroy White's entire plans and could be the move that players who value positional considerations more than material would recommend.

Phobetor
08-04-2007, 09:47 AM
If you want to be picky I am up for it. Like I said before, I thought you were justifying Bd7 on the basis of e5. But of course you cannot justify one move on the basis of a future bad move you are forced to play. Rereading what you originally said-
and it still looks to me like e5 is used as a justification for Bd7. It still looks to me like you were saying that White should not play f4 because of e5, note your use of the word "but". You also make mention of the follow up of e5 as "16...exf4, or 16... f5". You do not mention the follow up to e5 is getting a shocking position.

Maybe I should have been clearer and said that I thought Bd7 was junk if you need to play such a shocking move as e5 after it. But maybe you should also have been clearer about the implications of having to play e5.

Ok, you are right there about the but-implication :) But I just posted the puzzle, with my game plan as plan B, and making up another plan as plan A. At first sight, a logical plan seemed Bd7, so I picked that as plan A. Then I wanted to say that if white plays f4, black could possibly play e5, countering white's plan of f4-f5. Plan A should actually be divided between A1 and A2: A1 is 14... Bd7 15. f4 e5, and A2 is 14... Bd7 15. f4 and then something else than 15... e5.

Still, you say 15... e5 is terrible. But given the circumstances after 14... Bd7 15. f4 it's certainly one of the best moves. I've let Fritz analyse this position all day, and it switches back and forth from meeting f4 with f5 to meeting f4 with e5. So if you don't even like the plan of e5, then you will certainly not like the other options either.


Looks like Phobetor disagrees with me and mangafranga.

Because I was black and went for plan B, I'm a little biased of course :)
I see the idea of playing Ng6-e5-c6, and according to Fritz it's slightly better than the alternatives (Top 3 according to Fritz: 14... Ne5 (-0.05); 14... Qb6 (-0.03), 14... d5 (+0.03)). But also against this plan I'm biased, since in the game I played Nb8-c6-e5-g6, because at that time I needed it to defend the kingside. Playing Ng6-e5-c6 would contradict my first manoeuvre and waste four tempos.


As I have already said d5 changes the character of the position (so now White doesn't have the same type of opportunities on the Kingside, and Black might even be able to fight for the initiative), and it fights for the center. d5 is an interesting and reasonable move.

Comparing the positions after 14... d5 15. exd5 e5 16. Nde2 f5 and 14... Ne5 15. f4 Nc6 is like comparing apples to oranges. In the first position, black fights for the initiative, activates his pieces, gets a strong center, but also gives white a passed d-pawn, and gives white the gambited pawn back. In the second position, black tries to use the fact that he's a pawn up, while white will soon have a kingside attack running. Also black's still underdeveloped, and white has total control of the center.
Given the fact that Fritz likes them (almost) equally well, I think it's very hard to say which plan is the best.

ElevatorEscapee
08-04-2007, 07:38 PM
From Phobetor's original position, my initial response was the idea of 14... b5, followed by fianchettoing the light squared bishop on b7. I don't think that one has been covered yet. :)

Basil
08-04-2007, 07:49 PM
From Phobetor's original position, my initial response was ...
Quiet please. You haven't posted your rating and I don't know if you know what you're talking about :whistle: ;)

Phobetor
08-04-2007, 08:34 PM
From Phobetor's original position, my initial response was the idea of 14... b5, followed by fianchettoing the light squared bishop on b7. I don't think that one has been covered yet. :)
You can come up with your own ideas too, of course. But still there's the issue of 15. f4 and 16. f5. How do you plan to meet that?
And also, a problem with 14... b5 is that it leaves the c6-square open. So white could also play Nc6, Nxe7, and then go after the d-pawn, which isn't defended by the bishop anymore.

Desmond
08-04-2007, 08:38 PM
You can come up with your own ideas too, of course. But still there's the issue of 15. f4 and 16. f5. How do you plan to meet that?
And also, a problem with 14... b5 is that it leaves the c6-square open. So white could also play Nc6, Nxe7, and then go after the d-pawn, which isn't defended by the bishop anymore.If that is a major concern, ...Qc7 could be played and only then ...b5.

Phobetor
08-04-2007, 09:51 PM
If that is a major concern, ...Qc7 could be played and only then ...b5.
That solves the second problem, but not the first one :)
You suggest 14... Qc7 15. f4 b5? Then I guess 16. f5 gives white a nice advantage.

Desmond
08-04-2007, 10:24 PM
That solves the second problem, but not the first one :)
You suggest 14... Qc7 15. f4 b5? Then I guess 16. f5 gives white a nice advantage.Upon further reflection, I think that if you want to play Nc6 after ...b5, then I'll allow it. I think it is a better move that either of your ...d5 or ...Bd7


14...Ne5 15.f4 Nc6 16.Rad1Isn't the white queen on d1?


14... d5 15. exd5 e5 16. Nde2 f5 17. Rad1Ditto.

Are we all looking at the same position?? It strikes me as somwehat odd that the two of you make the same mistake.

Phobetor
08-04-2007, 10:42 PM
Upon further reflection, I think that if you want to play Nc6 after ...b5, then I'll allow it. I think it is a better move that either of your ...d5 or ...Bd7

Isn't the white queen on d1?

Ditto.

Are we all looking at the same position?? It strikes me as somwehat odd that the two of you make the same mistake.
Here's the position again:

http://t.laarhovenveldhoven.com/old/fen2img.php?r1bq1rk1/1p2bp1p/p2pppn1/8/3NP3/1BN5/PP1Q1PPP/R4RK1

I guess that answers your question :)

Ok, I think my move would be 14... b5 15. f4. What would your next move be?

Desmond
08-04-2007, 11:03 PM
Here's the position again:thanks


Ok, I think my move would be 14... b5 15. f4. What would your next move be?15...Qb6 looks ok at first glance. Anyway, it only has to be better than the alternative you gave: 14... d5 15. exd5 e5 16. Nde2 f5 17. Rad1 Bd6 18.Qh6 {not 18.f4? - why on earth would you play this move?} and Black's position looks quite worse to me.

andytoh
09-04-2007, 12:11 AM
I've looked over many continuations after the suggestion of me and Mangafranga (14...Ne5 15.f4 Nc6), and I found that Black stands up to White's Kingside attack with accurate play (Black's Queen goes to b6 in more lines then a5 by the way). In an OTB game, Black can easily slip and White will win. In a correspondence game, I believe Black will prove White has no compensation for his pawn.

In a practical OTB game, 14...d5 probably gives Black the greatest chances to obtain an advantage since by changing the whole character of the position and destroying White's plan, it certainly causes more pyschological ramifications (an important practical consideration OTB) for White. But if White's attack did succeed after 14...Ne5 15.f4 Nc6, then 14...d5 would no doubt in my mind be the best move because I don't think anything else would stop the Kingside attack.

Phobetor
09-04-2007, 12:36 AM
thanks

15...Qb6 looks ok at first glance. Anyway, it only has to be better than the alternative you gave: 14... d5 15. exd5 e5 16. Nde2 f5 17. Rad1 Bd6 18.Qh6 {not 18.f4? - why on earth would you play this move?} and Black's position looks quite worse to me.
I'll probably answer 14... b5 15. f4 Qb6 with 16. f5.
If you play 16... e5, then 17. fxg6 Qxd4+ 18. Qxd4 exd4 19. gxh7+ Kxh7 20. Nd5 looks great for white.
If you play 16... Ne5, then probably 17. Kh1 followed by taking e6, or at least getting a good kingside attack.
If you play 16... exf5, then 17. exf5 Ne5 18. Nd5 is just winning for white.

And maybe you're right, maybe f4 is bad for white in the line you said. But if white doesn't play it, black could play f5-f4, followed by f7-f5, when black's center is very strong.

Aaron Guthrie
09-04-2007, 03:37 AM
I'll probably answer 14... b5 15. f4 Qb6 with 16. f5. This looks good. 16.Kh1 is also a simple and very strong answer.

Aaron Guthrie
09-04-2007, 04:02 AM
Comparing the positions after 14... d5 15. exd5 e5 16. Nde2 f5 and 14... Ne5 15. f4 Nc6 is like comparing apples to oranges. In the first position, black fights for the initiative, activates his pieces, gets a strong center, but also gives white a passed d-pawn, and gives white the gambited pawn back. In the second position, black tries to use the fact that he's a pawn up, while white will soon have a kingside attack running. Also black's still underdeveloped, and white has total control of the center.
Given the fact that Fritz likes them (almost) equally well, I think it's very hard to say which plan is the best.Let me compare Apples to Oranges ;)

My reason for giving preference to Ne5 is thus.

After Ne5 I cannot believe that Black is worse, it looks to me like he has adequate defensive resources, and he has an extra pawn. Maybe White has enough compensation for equality or a minimal disadvantage.

After d5 I cannot believe that White is worse, his pieces are fine, he has a nice pawn on d5. Maybe Black can generate enough activity that this gives him equality or a minimal disadvantage.

But if White has more play that I think after Ne5, Black may die a horrible death. While if White is better than I thought in the second case then Black can probably still put up a damn good fight.

Of course one should trust ones own judgment, hence I rule in favor of Ne5.

andytoh
09-04-2007, 04:37 AM
As I continue to delve more into the many possible continuations after 14...Ne5 15.f4 Nc6, I become more and more convinced that Black can withstand any Kingside attack with accurate play. White can slowly gain some compensation for his pawn, but not enough. In OTB play, things could turn out very differently due to the very precise play required of Black while White's plan based on f4-f5, threats of Qh6, Rf3, etc... are pretty intuitive, and 14...d5 is Black's safest bet (though I wouldn't be happy about using the Bishop as a blockader instead of the Knight). But objectively, 14...Ne5 is best.

Phobetor
09-04-2007, 05:43 AM
Possibly black can withstand a kingside attack after 14... Ne5. But the fact that Fritz gives the position an evaluation of -0.03 does say that black won't make it to the endgame with a pawn up. Either Fritz has seen a line where white forces black to give up the pawn, or Fritz saw a line where white just has enough compensation for the pawn.
And the fact that Fritz gives 14... d5 +0.05, says that both sides have equal activity, equal initiative etc.
Given that the moves are close in strength, I'd rather play a move that turns the game back into an enjoyable position for black, than to sit back, defend, and hope for the best. Not only is it safer, in case I missed something for white, but also is it more enjoyable to actually both play a game, than to let only white play a game.

Aaron Guthrie
09-04-2007, 06:17 AM
Possibly black can withstand a kingside attack after 14... Ne5. But the fact that Fritz gives the position an evaluation of -0.03 does say that black won't make it to the endgame with a pawn up. Either Fritz has seen a line where white forces black to give up the pawn, or Fritz saw a line where white just has enough compensation for the pawn.
And the fact that Fritz gives 14... d5 +0.05, says that both sides have equal activity, equal initiative etc.
Given that the moves are close in strength, I'd rather play a move that turns the game back into an enjoyable position for black, than to sit back, defend, and hope for the best. Not only is it safer, in case I missed something for white, but also is it more enjoyable to actually both play a game, than to let only white play a game.I don't believe your analysis of the eval of Ne5. Follow its suggestion, I bet it gives bad moves and I bet it gradually shifts its eval to Black if you let it think as you move down the line.

To appeals to computer evals, mangafranga says no

Oh yeah, and I bet that you will see the line that it gives neither gives proper compensation nor wins back a pawn without giving black the better position.

Phobetor
09-04-2007, 06:29 AM
I don't believe your analysis of the eval of Ne5. Follow its suggestion, I bet it gives bad moves and I bet it gradually shifts its eval to Black if you let it think as you move down the line.

To appeals to computer evals, mangafranga says no

Oh yeah, and I bet that you will see the line that it gives neither gives proper compensation nor wins back a pawn without giving black the better position.
I let Fritz run all day, and at the end of the day, it said -0.03. I didn't let Fritz do anything in the meantime, just a full analysis of the current position. And no, it didn't switch anymore at that time. It was solid at -0.03.
Also, don't overestimate your own strength. I'm not saying you or andytoh are bad, but I'm sure you're both worse (and so am I) than Fritz.

I'm not saying you should always rely on chess computers, but I let it run for over 10 hours, and it came to that conclusion. Really, if it was as simple as you said, then Fritz would have seen that plan too.

Aaron Guthrie
09-04-2007, 06:48 AM
I let Fritz run all day, and at the end of the day, it said -0.03. I didn't let Fritz do anything in the meantime, just a full analysis of the current position. And no, it didn't switch anymore at that time. It was solid at -0.03.
Also, don't overestimate your own strength. I'm not saying you or andytoh are bad, but I'm sure you're both worse (and so am I) than Fritz.

I'm not saying you should always rely on chess computers, but I let it run for over 10 hours, and it came to that conclusion. Really, if it was as simple as you said, then Fritz would have seen that plan too.You are appealing to fritz. I am suggesting that if you show the line that justified the eval to fritz, and you move step by step down the line, you will see the eval drop. I guess there is a chance that you will see it jump up too if fritz is coming up with really bad moves for Black. Anyway the point is I suggest actually looking at the justification for the eval, not just trusting it.

Aside from that I trust my judgment of that position over fritz's evaluation.

I'd also trust my own judgment of the implications of computer evaluations over yours.

andytoh
09-04-2007, 07:30 AM
Phobetor, don't just let Fritz evaluate the position all day (besides, I read that after you hash tables are full, further evaluation is pretty pointless). Let it go through sample lines. Of all the lines I followed through, I only recall one line where Black had to give back the pawn, but in that same line Black ended up winning a pawn again and had the better endgame. In all the cases, White's Kingside attack did not come to fruition.

But I do think what you're trying to say is that over the board, no one can calculate whether 14...Ne5 or 14...d5 is best and intuition would tell you to play 14...d5. I would probably do the same over the board. But since your puzzle asks for which is objectively the best, not which is most practical in an OTB game, the answer I still stick by is 14...Ne5.

Phobetor
09-04-2007, 09:00 AM
Ok, let's analyze it further: 14... Ne5 15. f4 Nc6 16. Kh1

http://t.laarhovenveldhoven.com/old/fen2img.php?r1bq1rk1/1p2bp1p/p1nppp2/8/3NPP2/1BN5/PP1Q2PP/R4R1K

Your turn again :)

andytoh
09-04-2007, 09:14 AM
16...Nxd4 17.Qxd4 Qa5 18.f5 Qe5. White avoids the Queen exchange of course, then Black can play ...Kh8 and ...Rg8, and White has no Kingside attack.

Phobetor
09-04-2007, 09:26 AM
16...Nxd4 17.Qxd4 Qa5 18.f5 Qe5. White avoids the Queen exchange of course, then Black can play ...Kh8 and ...Rg8, and White has no Kingside attack.
Suppose 18. f5 is best for white, then after 18... Qe5 there are a few options.
Suppose I play 19. Qd1 Kh8 20. Qh5. How do you continue then.

andytoh
09-04-2007, 09:29 AM
16...Nxd4 was just the first move that came to mind, following general principles only (exchanging pieces to lessen your attack, and consistent with the planning behind 14...Ne5). Anyway, to continue:

20...Bd7 21.Rf3 Rg8 22.Qxf7 exf5 23.exf5 Rg5,

With ...Rf8 (...Rg8!) coming, White's Kingside attack is over, and he probably won't keep his pawn.

Phobetor
09-04-2007, 09:47 AM
16...Nxd4 was just the first move that came to mind, following general principles only (exchanging pieces to lessen your attack). Anyway, to continue:

20...Bd7 21.Rf3 Rg8 22.Qxf7 exf5 23.exf5 Rg5,

With ...Rf8 (...Rg8!) coming, White's Kingside attack is over, and he probably won't keep his pawn.
21. Rae1 looks better. Then what?

http://t.laarhovenveldhoven.com/old/fen2img.php?r4r1k/1p1bbp1p/p2ppp2/4qP1Q/4P3/1BN5/PP4PP/4RR1K

andytoh
09-04-2007, 10:03 AM
21...Rae8 22.Re3 (if White wants to continue attacking Black's King with Rh3) Rg8 23.Qxf7 Rg7 24.Qh5 Bd8! (...Bb6 to come, getting central counterplay with 24...d5!?, threatening ...d4, looks good too) 25.g4 exf5 26.gxf5 Bc6 (pinning the e5-pawn) 27.Qh4 Bb6 28.Ree1 Rg5 and White loses his pawn again. More importantly, no Kingside attack. Actually, it's White's King that's feeling the heat!

andytoh
09-04-2007, 11:33 AM
Phobetor, I don't think you need me to play Black. Try to find the best continuation for both sides after 14...Ne5. I think you will come to the same conclusion that I've already stated.

Basil
18-02-2008, 05:02 AM
[Post deleted - plagiarised. A copy has been retained for anyone who wishes to check it - KB]
Happy Birthday, Andy!
It's worth reading this one from the top if you have 5 minutes. Certainly take 30 seconds to read the first page.

Desmond
18-02-2009, 04:18 PM
Happy Birthday andytoh


woopwoop

Kevin Bonham
18-02-2009, 08:20 PM
Last active 17-10-2007.