Sunday, November 24, 2013

Romanovsky - Smorodsky, 3rd USSR Ch 1924

In this game Romanovsky exchanges a bishop for a knight (Spanish Exchange Variation), and then proceeds to prove the superiority of his knight's over Smorodsky's bishops. Peter Romanovsky is probably best known for his classic Russian middlegame book, which is now available in English from Quality Chess Books as Soviet Middlegame Technique.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Gligoric - Larsen, Manila 1973

Another game demonstrating the power of the bishop pair when a position is opened up. We also see opposite side castling and the ensuing attack complete with an exchange sac as Gligoric goes for the kill.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Study Chess with Matthew Sadler

I just finished a quick, initial read through of this book by Matthew Sadler. A couple of years ago he jumped back into chess after a 10 year break from professional chess, and had some phenomenal events. This book talks about some of the things he does. In this initial reading I mostly skimmed through the games. The 3 main things I took from the book are:

  1. Learning Openings - Kind of an Aagard lite (from Jacob's Excelling at Chess book)
  2. Different Modes of thinking - active , reactive, prophylactic
  3. Endgame Study
Matthew likes to do something for learning openings that is similar to part of what Aagard talks about for learning an opening. Matthew likes to get about 80 or so example games for his line, and then plays through them and marks the different ideas he finds. Aagard's approach involves first looking at the endgames that arise from that opening. Then playing through a bunch of games in the opening, and noting the different ideas down as you find them. Finally Jacob will look at the actual theory for the opening

In the section of different modes of thinking, Matthew talks about these 3 modes of thinking. Active is where you focusing on enforcing your plan on the game. Reactive mostly involves finding your move by comparison and process of elimination. Prophylactic thinking involves determining what your opponent wants and working to thwart that.

In the final section of the book Matthew discusses studying the endgame. He talks about studying theoretical positions from something like Averbakh, studying endgames from modern grandmaster play, and also studying classics (and annotating the ideas in them similar to what was done with the opening games).

Overall I think it is a worthwhile book, and I look forward to actually working through the games.

Monday, November 18, 2013

The Power of Bishops, Makogonov - Keres, Moscow 1939

Continuing to play through 50 Essential Chess Lessons, we are this time given a demonstration of the power of bishops by Makogonov against the great Paul Keres. Keres opens up the position giving Makogonov's bishop pair great scope.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Counter attack in the Center, Tal - Spassky 1965 Candidate Finals Game 11

I continued to play through Giddins's 50 Essential Chess Lessons tonight and this was one of the games in the section on defending. Spassky calmly counter attacks in the center when Tal is attacking on the kingside.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Padevsky - Kholmov, Dresden 1956

I played through this game tonight as I continue where I left off in Giddins's 50 Essential Chess Lessons. Between the birth of our second daughter and a very busy spell at work from July through September, I haven't been able to spend much time on chess. So it feels good to be spending time on the game again.

In this game Padevsky looks to have a promising attack, but Kholmov defends well and eventually Padevsky falters while in time trouble. Enjoy.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Training update

I haven't been able to spend as much time as I would like on chess the past 6 weeks or so, but it is for a good reason. Our 2nd daughter was born on May 11th. I have been doing tactics puzzles and keeping up with my correspondence games, but not much else. In another month or so I should be ready to increase the daily workload.

I need to catch up on my reading of Jacob Aagaard's wonderful blogs posts though.

I was happy to see Gata Kamsky do very well at the recent Grand Prix, unfortunately I didn't have the opportunity to follow along while it was taking place.