How would you judge this position, which arose after the 25th move by white in the game between Ponomariov and Bareev (FIDE Wch k.o. Moscow 2001). Question: who is better and can black take the pawn on e5?Read More »
Right or wrong?
Before you answer the first question, I have another question. Was white’s last move: 19. Qd1 right or wrong? What was the alternative?Read More »
Funny little puzzle
I found this funny puzzle on the Chess Tactics app. It is white to move and win. How?Read More »
This chess puzzle comes from the Chess Tactics Pro app. White to move wins. Scroll for the solution or press the hyperlink…Read More »
Puzzle: too much to handle
This is a fragment from the game between Karl Burger and Pal Benkö (USA 1969). What is the best move for black?Read More »
Puzzle: retreat or…?
The black queen is attacked by the rook on e1. What should black play?Read More »
Getting the upper hand
This position resulted from a Sicilian Dragon. Something went a bit wrong for white. But he didn’t notice it and played 12. Be3?
Why is this a mistake?
A sneaky pawn endgame
Have you ever heard that pawn endgames are not as easy as they often seem? Probably. See for instance this study by Joseph Moravec (1925). What is your first thought when you see this position?
You probably think: it looks great for black. You are right: white has to fight for a draw. The question is can white make a draw?Read More »
Opening traps according to Sagar Shah
Opening books are popular. Actually, I don’t really know why. Because personally, I have never finished an opening book. Most of the opening books in my bookcase lead a sad existence. At best, I will occasionally consult them as a reference.
Perhaps those books are so popular because we hope for a quick victory? Or to avoid having to resign after a couple of moves? No idea. But what I do know is that it is useful to know and avoid falling into opening traps. Or much better: trapping your opponent.
IM Sagar Shah has started a fun series about traps in the opening on the youtube channel of ChessBase India. The videos are released at a rapid pace. They are short and entertaining. The most important thing: you are introduced to some nasty tactics in the opening. Take, for instance, this video about the Accelerated Dragon in the Sicilian defence.
Sagar Shah regularly enlivens his lesson with a light anecdote. In the next video, he is playing a game of chess with his wife. Apparently, you shouldn’t mess with her. Watch how this turned out.Read More »
A Modern Guide to Checkmating Patterns
The goal of chess is of course to checkmate your opponent. That can be done in different ways.
Chess often revolves around pattern recognition. Once you have studied those patterns and know them by heart, it is a lot easier to see how to checkmate an opponent during a game. That’s what this book is about.
Of course you have not read anything new with this introductory text. But reading (or hearing) and knowing is often something different than doing it in practice. That is precisely why this is such a usefull book. You can practice a lot and will never forget the patterns you have learned.