Just another site

Posts Tagged ‘opinion

White or Black?.- Black and White!

leave a comment »

Have you solved this mate-in-two-move problem??. Here is the solution:

The only possibility to reach this position with a mate in two moves is if Black last’s move had been … f7-f5/ (!!). (So perhaps you were thinking that these problems start with White on the move… Well, this is so ,but since problems have to show possible, legal positions these positions come from some previous position… and as White first move must be legal nobody says that move could not be “in answer to a previous Black’s move” – lateral thinking!-)

This position could not have occurred on its own because it would be illegal -but for a previos Black move. So, White’s first move is 1. g5f6: e.p.  g7f6: 2. Nf6: mate !

This problem contains a tale: in Chess, don’t give anything for granted. Don’t think in a linear direction. There may be roundabouts, backwards manoeuvres, waiting moves, and so on.



Chess has several topics repeated ad infinitum and ad absurdum as if they were some sort o “Holy Writ”. One of them is that which states that “White has the advantage because  s/he plays the first move”. This implies many pre-judices : White has to attack/Black can only defend, etc. One of the facts given is that statistically speaking the White pieces win more games han the Black ones (I  call it “the statistical fallacy”).  Before continuing, let me recommend you the book “Chess for Zebras” by GM. Rowson. In my opinion, he is one of  today’s the most lucid writers .   To show my idea, I will list some thoughts:

– Statistics do not win games, points or matches: they only show tendencies.

-Even same or similar ELO rating ( again we should exclude  top level GMs) does not mean same Chess ability, less possibilities of making mistakes,same degree of knowledge). (GM Rowson says that even games played by  GMS are full of mistakes, after all -I add- OTB Chess has a powerful and very dangerous component: the clock)

-The Hypermodernists, the Soviet Chess School and many individuals (Nimzowitsch, Botvinnik, Fischer, Adorjan, Tal, Kasparov …) have defended /investigated the aggressive recourses at Black’ s disposal. Please consider that many opening discoveries by the Hypermoderninst were for the Black side: Alekhine, Grünfeld, Benoni, King’s Indian, Nimzoindian etc.defences).

Then came the Soviet Chess School immense theoretical contribution in the above + the French, the Sicilian, the Dutch an so on. Bobby Fischer made giant strides when he realised that Black could fight for a victory and began to work on an aggressive repertoire as Black.

-Many chessplayers seem to be labouring under a sort of 19th century mental attitude: “White must play to win, Black must defend, so as White I should win and as Black I could lose or make a pathetic draw”.

-Different chessplayers have different attitudes and goals.

-Many people began to speak of a curious “attitude”:  ” To win as White and draw as Black  = victory in tournaments”. (Simply: try this is at any ICCF event and you will see what happens: you will not be able to win all your games as White and will lose many as Black…). Apart from this, nobody knows how to do it.

-Chess has many levels of confrontation: what may be relatively valid for the strongest 10 or 15 first world GMs may not be valid for the rest of GMs , IMs and average players. (Remember there are GMs with 2400 ELO points…, not all GMs have 2700…, O.K.?  -A chessplayer gets it if  s/he  fulfils all the requirements to receive the GM title. Then he may lose many rating points but he keeps the title forever. I remember that during the 60’s at least this was not so.)

-Many things written in books and Chess magazines are written/said by top level players in a given situation. (What Kotov wrote in his age could not be totally valid  today.)

GM Rowson theory of “Ceteris Paribus” and his idea that winning at Chess may have to do more with one’s skills/abilities even the particular mood the day of the game than with information and statistics should be engraved in gold.

-Today, in an age of ultra-dynamism, the possible starting gap (if any) between White and Black is less and less wide.

-It is not the openings alone, today’s defensive technique has nothing to do with the same in any past period of time.

-Chess is a confrontation between two chessplayers, not between two statistical approaches. (Karpov has won many top-level games with the Caro-Kann an opening considered tame and drawish by many “experts”.)

-I am biassed towards the Black pieces because when I began to study Chess I was very surprised to see  how many games Nimzowitsch was able to win as Black… As White I have a main 1st move, and two useful stand-by ones. From time to time I change that 1st move so as to let it “rest”, play new positions and refresh the old, mechanical  ideas.

Even now,playing as Black seems exciting to me:   “what if my opponent starts with 1. e4? -Shall I play a Sicilian, or perhaps a Pirc, or better a Modern, or a Cao-Kann, even the Alekhine can be a useful idea… And if he plays 1. d4?- Perhaps a Nimzoindian against 3. Nc3 or the Queen’s Indian if 3. Nf3. But I have also played the Grünfeld and The Benoni? Shall I take risks then?. And against 1. Nf3 I have those systems + 1. …b5 .- If not, I have the uncommittal 1. Nf3 , Nf6 -wait-and-see policy-“. And so on. These and others are some of the thoughts I entertain when I am Black.

In OTB Chess players try to refine their repertoires trying to avoid theoretical novelties. Some GMs have relatively short repertoires, others can play a variety of systems. In CC the many players are trying to find computer-proof systems -if any-  while others try to play sound systems without caring for their opponents programs. Good positions are good positions, and this means that now I have become less and less speculative: in today’s CC games any sacrifice -of a Pawn or a piece- must be positionally and tactically sound: you cannot expect your opponent to make an analysis mistake “because-the-position-will-get-so-wild-that-in-the-end-he-will-have-to-take-some-risk-on-his-part”, as if in CC this was already difficult in the past, today, with the computer, this is, simply, suicidal. And all in all, sacrifices are possible because not all Chess is clear-cut tactical. Chess programs are too strong, all right. But I am convinced there is particular field you can catch them on the hop. The problem is how to provoke such positions one time after another (and it is not in the field of opening gambits -“Fritz and Friends” know everthing about it-.)

Before including some games, let me say that in Chess you are playing against an opponent. No statistics will help you find the best move. So, work on your repertoire , play confidently  but, above all, try not to make mistakes: leave them to your rival!.


W.: Kotov  (0)

B.: Tal (1)

Riga 1958

1. c4 Nf6 2. Nf3 g6 3. d4 Bg7  4. g3 0-0  5. Bg2  d6  6. 0-0  Nbd7  7. Nc3  e5  8. e4 c6  9. h3  Qa5  10. Re1  Re8  11. a3  ed4  12. Nd4: Ne5  13. Bf1  a6  14. Bd2 Qb6  15. Be3  c5  16. Nb3  Be6  17. Nd2  Nc6  18. b4 Ng4!  19. hg4  Bc3:  20. Rc1  Bg7  21. Nb3 Rad8  22. Nd2  Qc7  23. Rb1  Ne5  24. Be2 b5  25. cb5  ab5 26. Bb5: Bg4:  27. Be2 Qd7  28. Bg4: Ng4:  29. Kg2 h5  30. Bg5 Bd4! 31. Re2  f6  32. Bf4  g5  33. f3  Nf2  34. Rf2: Bf2:  35. Kf2:  gf4    36. gf4 Qa7  37. Qb3  c4  38. Qe3  Qe3:  39. Ke3: d5  40. Rg1  Kf7  41. Ke2  c3  42.Nb3 de4  43. Rc1  ef3  44. Kf3:  Rd3  45. Kf2  c2  46. Nc5 Rd2  47. Kf3  Re1!  48. Re1:  Rd1./   White resigned.

W.: Olafsson (0)

B.: Miles (1)

Las Palmas 1978

1. c4  b6 2. Nc3  e6  3. d4  Bb4  4. e3  Bb7  5. N1e2  f5  6. a3 Bd6  7. d5  Nf6  8. Nd4  0-0  9. de6 Ne4  10. Qc2  Nc3:  11. Qc3:  Qf6  12. ed7  Nd7:  13. Bd2  Nc5  14. Nf3  Qg6  15. h4  Ne4  16. h5  Qg4  17. Ne5  Be5:  18. Qe5:  Rae8  19.  Qh2  Nd2:  20. Kd2:  f4  21. ef4  Rf4:  22. Qg3  Rd4  23. Kc3  Qg3:  24. fg3  c5  25. Kb3  Re3  26. Ka2  Bc8!  27. Rh4  Bg4!  28. Rc1  g5  29. hg6  hg6  30. Rc3  Rc3:  31.bc3  Rd2  32. Ka1  Bd7  33. Rf4  Kg7  34. Rf3  Bc6  35. Rd3  Rf2  36.  Rd1  Ba4  37. Re1  Kf6  38. Bd3  Rf2:  39. Rf1  Kg5  40. Rf3  Bc2  41.  Bc2: Rc2:  42. Rf7  Kg4  43. Ra7:  g5  44. Rb7  Kg3:  45. Rb6:  g4  46. a4  Rh4  47. a5  g3  48. a6  g2  49. Rb1  Rf2  50. a7  Rf8                  51. Kb2  Ra8 / White resigned.

W.: Beliavsky (0)

B.: Karpov (1)

Linares 1992

1. d4  Nf6  2. c4  e6  3. Nf3  b6  4. g3  Ba6  5. b3  Bb7  6. Bg2  Bb4  7. Bd2  a5  8. 0-0  0-0  9. Bc3  d5  10. Ne5  Qe8  11. Bb2  dc4  12. Nc4:  Bg2:  13. Kg2: Qb7  14. f3  Rd8  15. Qc2  Nc6  16. a3  Be7  17. e3  b5  18. Nce2  Na7    19. Ne4  Ne4:  20. Qe4:  Qe4:  21. fe4  c5  22. a4  cd4  23. ed4  Nc6  24. Rd1  Rab8  25. ab5  Rb5:  26. Rd3  f5  27.  ef5  Rf5:  28. Nd2  Rfd5  29. Re3  e5  30. Nc4  Bg5  31. Re4  ed4  32. Re6  Nb4  33.  Rd1  Nc2  34.  Kf3  Rb5  35. Rd3  a4  36.  h4  Bf6  37. Ke4  ab3  38. Rb6 Re8  39. Kf4 Rb6:  40. Nb6:  Be5  41. Kg4  Bc7  42. Na4  Re3  43. Re3: de3  44. Kf3  Bg3: / White resigned.


Written by QChess

May 30, 2012 at 8:35 pm

The Blog

The latest news on and the WordPress community.

%d bloggers like this: