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Author Topic: Chess thread  (Read 263649 times)
AndrewT
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« Reply #90 on: August 14, 2012, 02:01:51 PM »

Loved the tales of players trying to put each other off before the game.

During the Olympics Mark Foster told a story of a time when he was in a race against the great Russian swimmer Alexander Popov. As they were waiting to come out before the race, Popov turned to Foster and said something like 'you could be a great swimmer if you ever sort out that thing with your elbow'

'My elbow? What's wrong with it?'

'It's too high when you pull your arm through'

Foster then, of course, starts thinking about his swimming action and swims quite poorly and it was only years later than Popov admitted to Foster that he made up the elbow thing to disrupt Foster's action, as he knew he'd start thinking about it.
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Tal
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« Reply #91 on: August 14, 2012, 03:57:47 PM »

There's a wonderfully instructive story on the other side of that, which I apologise if I've only half-remembered.

A tennis pro was struggling for form badly and had pretty much had his fill of the rotating elite tennis coaches. In desperation, he was put in touch with a coach from a business sector, completely unconnected with sport.

The coach realised quickly enough that it was a psychological block - think they call it The Yips in a lot of sports - and that the solution would essentially be focusing the player's mind on the job; the moment.

He decided to make the player watch the ball as it came over the net, but saying "watch the ball" would never work. Instead he asked a much cleverer question:

Tell me, which way is the ball spinning?

In chess, people make silly mistakes, where games are lost for an elementary misclick. The Russian master of half a century past, Alexander Kotov, wrote a book called Think Like a Grandmaster. In it, he suggested that players should list the possible moves and, excluding the ones that are obviously no good, you end up with 2-5 possibles. Then you know that you have definitely got the right move on your list.

After that, you work through the variations until one comes out on top. That's your move.

But wait! My old coach explained to me that a last look around is key before you put finger to piece. Just make sure there's nothing obvious your opponent can do and you're good to go.

Systematic approaches are often so effective
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« Reply #92 on: August 14, 2012, 06:47:12 PM »

I vaguely had an idea to see if I was on the ECF database (v much as a dead link, but technically there to record my whole one tournament)

That made me think of looking up the proper name for an opening (Larsen's as it happens)

BUT that made me look at a related one, the Wiki entry to it had this explanation for one of it's names


Quote
The Sokolsky Opening (also known as the Orangutan or Polish Opening)
...
 Perhaps its most famous use came in the game Tartakower–Maróczy, New York City 1924. The name "Orangutan Opening" originates from that game: the players had visited the zoo the previous day, and Tartakower had consulted an orangutan there about what move he should open with the next day.

Which I thought was brilliant Cheesy
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« Reply #93 on: August 15, 2012, 08:56:22 AM »

I've never heard that story before. Fabulous!

The Orangutan opening starts with White moving the pawn in front of his queen's knight up two squares (1.b4).

Larsen's opening is the same pawn, but only moving it up one (1.b3).

A few openings are called Indian openings (the most famous being the King's Indian, which is still very popular). The reason for this is they involve moving a pawn up one square and, in the original version of chess, Chaturanga (he says hopefully spelling it correctly), which started in India, pawns could only move up one square at a time.
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Tal
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« Reply #94 on: August 15, 2012, 09:04:30 AM »

http://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail.asp?newsid=8050

Something more hands-on for you all.

The chessbase website posted a collection every month or so of a variety of tactical plays in Grand master games. Some are reasonably straightforward; some trickier.

It helps when you know that there is a killer punch, because no one tells you that when you are playing the game at the time!

Not all of them are checkmate; winning a bishop/knight or a queen for a rook, say, is enough.

Make sure you think of all the possible responses for the victim- OK it's checkmate if he moves left, but what if he moves right?

Have fun, anyway...

Solutions are linked at the bottom of the page when you are ready. Don't worry if it's not what you thought. Just see why.
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« Reply #95 on: August 15, 2012, 10:19:06 AM »

http://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail.asp?newsid=8047

funny story from chessbase this year publish 2/4/2012 ish Rajlich: Busting the King's Gambit, this time for sure

Quote
Rajlich: Busting the King's Gambit, this time for sure
02.04.2012 – Fifty years ago Bobby Fischer published a famous article, "A Bust to the King's Gambit", in which he claimed to have refuted this formerly popular opening. Now chess programmer IM Vasik Rajlich has actually done it, with technical means. 3000 processor cores, running for over four months, exhaustively analysed all lines that follow after 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 and came to some extraordinary conclusions.

Interview with Vasik Rajlich

On March 31 the author of the Rybka program, Vasik Rajlich, and his family moved from Warsaw, Poland to a new appartment in Budapest, Hungary. The next day, in spite of the bustle of moving boxes and setting up phone and Internet connections Vas, kindly agreed to the following interview, which had been planned some months ago.

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Tal
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« Reply #96 on: August 15, 2012, 11:11:53 AM »

http://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail.asp?newsid=8047

funny story from chessbase this year publish 2/4/2012 ish Rajlich: Busting the King's Gambit, this time for sure

Quote
Rajlich: Busting the King's Gambit, this time for sure
02.04.2012 – Fifty years ago Bobby Fischer published a famous article, "A Bust to the King's Gambit", in which he claimed to have refuted this formerly popular opening. Now chess programmer IM Vasik Rajlich has actually done it, with technical means. 3000 processor cores, running for over four months, exhaustively analysed all lines that follow after 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 and came to some extraordinary conclusions.

Interview with Vasik Rajlich

On March 31 the author of the Rybka program, Vasik Rajlich, and his family moved from Warsaw, Poland to a new appartment in Budapest, Hungary. The next day, in spite of the bustle of moving boxes and setting up phone and Internet connections Vas, kindly agreed to the following interview, which had been planned some months ago.



Yes I remember this story. Shalln't spoil it.

Capablanca once claimed he had solved chess; that he had taken it as far as it could be taken. He lost the world title to Alekhine shortly afterwards.
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« Reply #97 on: August 15, 2012, 11:13:06 AM »

http://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail.asp?newsid=8050

Something more hands-on for you all.

The chessbase website posted a collection every month or so of a variety of tactical plays in Grand master games. Some are reasonably straightforward; some trickier.

It helps when you know that there is a killer punch, because no one tells you that when you are playing the game at the time!

Not all of them are checkmate; winning a bishop/knight or a queen for a rook, say, is enough.

Make sure you think of all the possible responses for the victim- OK it's checkmate if he moves left, but what if he moves right?

Have fun, anyway...

Solutions are linked at the bottom of the page when you are ready. Don't worry if it's not what you thought. Just see why.

So the first one was more to do with a mistake from black (Qe8) than an awesome move by white?

Putting your queen on the same rank as your king seems to be a potentially dangerous thing to do and I'd assume you need to look very carefully for traps like this before you do so?

I would've thought this one was more interesting to figure out what black could do differently? For example Bxe5 or Pxe5 (sorry if these are the wrong way of saying things).

Before Qe8 is this a winning position for either colour?

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« Reply #98 on: August 15, 2012, 11:27:16 AM »

All the problems arise because the other player has done something to allow it, either by making a move that opens the opportunity or by playing something else entirely and accidentally allowing the trick.

Black looks OK at first sight if he doesn't play Qe8 because he has equal material. The problem is that silly rook of his and the knight stuck on the back rank. White has that lovely square of g6 with his knight looking menacingly at it. Combine that with the bishop on e5 and the tactical threats such as the one played in the game and White is better here.

As for your suggested moves, assume white to be a strong player. He would have spotted that the bishop on e5 is attacked but he has allowed it still to be takeable, which suggests he has a plan up his sleeve. That f8 square looks delicious...
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« Reply #99 on: August 15, 2012, 11:46:55 AM »

Prepared to be shot down here but would Nb6 be a decent move for black?

It offers protection of that back rank by the rook and also obviously frees the rook up.

It also threatens Nc4 covering a3 and e5

Should black be looking to trade off and force a draw in this position if possible?
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« Reply #100 on: August 15, 2012, 12:28:42 PM »

Let's have a look at Nb6...

Before we do anything, your reason for moving the knight is twofold: to develop the piece generally and to threaten Nc4, forking the queen and bishop.

The tactical threat is a nice idea, but bear in mind that white gets a move first, so he neeonlg move his queen to prevent the fork. Nevertheless, c4 is a good square for the knight so we shouldn't let the tactical bit put us off; positionally, it looks good.

What about developing? I've explained that the rook and knight are stuck in that corner making a mess of Black's drawing chances, so moving the knight solves that problem. But the knight is doing two things for Black at the moment: defending the a7 and d6 pawns.

As soon as you move that knight, the white Queen will munch that d6 pawn, which looks as delicious as a pie on a shelf from a Disney cartoon.

It gets worse: play 1...Nb6 2.Qxd6. The white queen is then threatening the f8 square (the rook is now covering it but we are attacking it twice now) and the pawn two in front of the King on h6. The black bishop is still pinned so it isn't defending the pawn.

Nb6 highlights the trouble Black is in. At first sight, it's not too bad, but as you try to think of moves, you realise you're making the position worse.

This is one of the most frustrating parts of chess: when you think you're fine until you realise it's too late!

Does that help?
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« Reply #101 on: August 15, 2012, 12:43:44 PM »

Definitely. Much appreciated.

So what would your move be as black?
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« Reply #102 on: August 15, 2012, 01:02:38 PM »

It's pretty horrible tbh. Maybe Kh7. If the bishop checks, the king can come back and the white took is attacked by the black queen.
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« Reply #103 on: August 15, 2012, 02:11:12 PM »

It's pretty horrible tbh. Maybe Kh7. If the bishop checks, the king can come back and the white took is attacked by the black queen.

So how much of a lower standard player would you need to be up against to turn black in to a winning position?

If I was playing as white (rating 1243 on shredder over 30 games) would you expect to be able to turn this around against me?

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« Reply #104 on: August 15, 2012, 04:57:17 PM »

At the moment, it's a little out of my hands, as anyone could play the correct tactical moves, whether by accident or design.

If you had no idea what you were doing and didn't find the right ideas, I would develop my knight and rook, stop the immediate tactical threats and probably avoid swaps until I had a better position or some extra material.

That would do it.

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