Bad evaluation leads to a comedy of errors

Is solving tactical puzzles the road to success in chess? Some people are inclined to say:

‘Yes of course. On club level almost all games are decided by tactical errors!’

So we need not bother about strategy? Or trying to evaluate postions in the correct way?

Well the answer is obvious: of course not! The correct evaluation of a position is mostly the deciding factor in chess. The majority of the positions do not contain any tactics and you do not need the calculate very deeply. Chess is al about thinking of the correct plans. To do this in the proper way, you need to evaluate positions correctly. Bad evaluations lead to bad plans. And in my case: lead to disaster.Read More »

Chess puzzle #23: tricky little move

See the diagram on the right. What do you think: who is better?

The answer seems quite obvious. Although the pawn structures are almost identical, black has the active pieces. You might also say ‘the white king is missing his natural defender’ (a knight on f3).

But black’s advantage seems short lived. White is ready to exchange these active pieces and then the combatants can bring their game to a peaceful end and go to the bar. Or is there a way for black to exploit his advantage?

Here you will find the solution to this chess puzzle…