FIDE Trainer: a treasure of articles

by Albert Silver
7/31/2015 – FIDE has certainly undergone a number of changes over the years, some good, and some less so, but certainly one of the best has been the creation and structuring of the FIDE trainer, allowing chess teachers of all levels to earn official accreditation. A separate section exists with the expected information, but did you know there is also a large selection of free chess lectures?

When opening the FIDE Trainer's site, unless you are specifically seeking information on a chess teacher, or the steps required to receive accreditation as one, you might easily just take a quick look around, and miss one of its most attractive features for all chess players, whether a teacher or a student.

Beyond the main purpose of the site, standardizing chess instruction, is a secret treasure

On the left is a menu of subsections of the site, among which is one called Surveys. The word survey is a very flexible word in English, and it could just as easily represent a variety of statistics on players, countries, or federations. In this case, it turns out to be an large archive of lectures in PDF that were written by diverse grandmasters, and provided for others to use as teaching material or for students to just enjoy.

On the FIDE Trainer's page, click on Surveys to go to the list of articles

While attractive sounding, you might ask yourself what sort of material can you expect to find. The authors are all top trainers and grandmaster discussing topics that range from psychology to technique, openings, endgame, and more.

Here is a list of the articles and authors published in 2015 alone, available for perusal:

FIDE TRG Trainers' Surveys 2015:

2015.01.23 Efstratios Grivas: Rook & Knight vs Rook
2015.01.23 Alonso Zapata: Removing the Defender!
2015.02.26 Adrian Mikhalchishin: Capablanca's method of realization
2015.02.26 Reynaldo Vera: Time Trouble
2015.03.31 Georg Mohr: Mobile center - the typical pawn structure d4 + e4 : e6
2015.03.31 Michael Khodarkovsky: Tribute to Efim Geller
2015.04.25 Vereslav Eingorn: Knight endings and Pawn endings: the difference
2015.04.25 Efstratios Grivas: The Hungarian Knight-Tour
2015.05.29 Alexander Beliavsky: Modern Reti
2015.05.29 Jeroen Bosch: The Transfer into the Pawn Ending
2015.06.30 Sam Palatnik: Chess GPS
2015.06.30 Spyridon Skembris: Inspiration from the Classics
2015.07.24 Adrian Mikhalchishin: Triangle central setup
2015.07.24 Susan Polgar: Move forward!

As a taster, we republish an excerpt from an article by Adrian Mikhalchishin with kind permission from FIDE.

Capablanca's method of realization

by Adrian Mikhalchishin

Realization is a very important part of the game, in which juniors usually experience many technical problems. The great Capa was one of the finest players in the history of the game. His games are extraordinarily instructive and he left a few very important and simple tips for the following generations. He taught that to realize the extra exchange in the simplest way, you should try to sacrifice it back, winning a pawn. The realization of the extra pawn is usually much easier than the realization of the extra exchange. Let us see how this method was used in practice. And we can start, naturally with the game of the author of these rules.

Capablanca - Janowski, 1916

It seems that the black knight on d5 and the pawn for the exchange are able to keep a strong blockade, but White is able to destroy it.

[Event "New York Rice prel"] [Site "New York"] [Date "1916.??.??"] [Round "3"] [White "Capablanca, Jose Raul"] [Black "Janowski, Dawid Markelowicz"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "D11"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "8/1p1k3r/2p5/3n2b1/1p4P1/1P1R2B1/6K1/4R3 w - - 0 49"] [PlyCount "82"] [EventDate "1916.01.17"] [EventType "tourn"] [EventRounds "13"] [EventCountry "USA"] [Source "ChessBase"] [SourceDate "1999.07.01"] 49. Re5 $1 Bf6 50. Rexd5+ $1 cxd5 51. Rxd5+ Ke8 52. Rb5 {[#] Now White wins a pawn and his rook is more active than Black's.} Rd7 53. Rxb4 Kf7 54. Rb6 ({ Probably better was to try to transfer into a rook endgame, where White's rook would be extremely well placed with} 54. Kf3) 54... Bd4 55. Rd6 {It would seem that that correct realization is to convert into a bishop endgame now.} Rxd6 56. Bxd6 Kg6 57. Kf3 Bf6 58. Bf4 Kf7 59. Ke4 Ke6 60. Be3 Be7 61. g5 Bd8 62. Kf4 Bc7+ 63. Kg4 Be5 64. Kh5 Kf7 65. Kh6 Kg8 66. Bb6 Bc3 67. Kg6 Bd2 68. Kf6 Bc3+ 69. Ke6 Bd2 70. g6 Bc3 71. Kd5 Bd2 72. Bd4 b5 73. Ke4 b4 74. Be3 Bc3 75. Kd3 Be1 76. Bd2 Bf2 77. Ke4 Bc5 78. Kd5 Be7 79. Kc4 Kg7 80. Bxb4 Bd8 81. Bc3+ Kxg6 82. b4 Kf5 83. Kd5 {Here Janowski resigned, but years later Yuri Averbach found the method to draw here! It starts with the somewhat paradoxical looking} Kf4 84. b5 Ke3 85. Kc6 Kd3 86. Be1 Kc4 87. Bf2 Ba5 88. Bb6 Be1 89. Bc7 Bf2 { etc.} 1-0

Przepiorka - Gruenfeld, 1925

With the extra exchange, according to the great Capablanca, the most natural way to win is to sacrifice the exchange back, winning a pawn. However, first one must prepare the conversion to the correct pawn endgame.

[Event "Debrecen"] [Site "Debrecen"] [Date "1925.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "Przepiorka, Dawid"] [Black "Gruenfeld, Ernst"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "A30"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "8/8/4pk2/1R2n1p1/8/4PPK1/8/8 w - - 0 93"] [PlyCount "21"] [EventDate "1925.??.??"] [EventType "tourn"] [EventRounds "13"] [EventCountry "HUN"] [Source "ChessBase"] [SourceDate "1999.07.01"] 93. e4 Nf7 94. Kg4 Kg6 95. f4 gxf4 96. Kxf4 Kf6 97. e5+ Ke7 98. Kg4 Kd7 99. Rb7+ Ke8 {[#]} 100. Rxf7 $1 Kxf7 101. Kh5 {The classical flanking maneuver. Though Black resigned, play would continue} Kg7 102. Kg5 Kf7 103. Kh6 1-0

Reshevsky - Smyslov, 1945

The bishop pair and its control of all squares around looks unbreakable, but with the exchange sacrifice Smyslov exploits the white king's distance from the kingside.

[Event "USA-URS radio m"] [Site "radio"] [Date "1945.09.03"] [Round "2.2"] [White "Reshevsky, Samuel Herman"] [Black "Smyslov, Vassily"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "D15"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "8/6p1/3k1p2/6p1/4BnP1/1K3PB1/4r2P/8 b - - 0 64"] [PlyCount "15"] [EventDate "1945.09.01"] [EventType "team"] [EventRounds "2"] [Source "ChessBase"] [SourceDate "1999.07.01"] [WhiteTeam "US of America"] [BlackTeam "Soviet Union"] [WhiteTeamCountry "USA"] [BlackTeamCountry "URS"] 64... Rxe4 $1 65. fxe4 Ke5 66. h4 Kxe4 ({Another way was} 66... gxh4 67. Bxh4 Kxe4 68. g5 f5 69. Kc2 g6 70. Kd1 Kf3 71. Kd2 Kg4 72. Be1 Nh3 73. Ke2 Nxg5) 67. hxg5 fxg5 68. Kc4 Kf3 69. Be1 Kxg4 70. Kd4 Kf3 71. Ke5 g4 0-1

Lombardy - Fischer, 1960

Fischer has the exchange for a pawn, but the best way to win is to return the rook.

[Event "USA-ch"] [Site "New York"] [Date "1960.12.19"] [Round "2"] [White "Lombardy, William James"] [Black "Fischer, Robert James"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B55"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "8/pp4pp/4k3/3rPp2/1Pr4P/2B1KPP1/1P6/4R3 b - - 0 30"] [PlyCount "27"] [EventDate "1960.12.18"] [EventType "tourn"] [EventRounds "11"] [EventCountry "USA"] [Source "ChessBase"] [SourceDate "1999.07.01"] 30... Rxc3+ $1 31. bxc3 Rxe5+ 32. Kd2 Rxe1 33. Kxe1 Kd5 34. Kd2 Kc4 35. h5 {[#] } b6 $1 {Preparing the distant passed pawn, which easily decides this pawn endgame.} 36. Kc2 g5 37. h6 f4 38. g4 a5 39. bxa5 bxa5 40. Kb2 a4 41. Ka3 Kxc3 42. Kxa4 Kd4 43. Kb4 Ke3 0-1

To read the rest of the article, click HERE.

If you enjoyed Adrian Mikhalchishin's article, consider one of his numerous instructive DVDs such as the five-part Strategy University, Winning Structures (an excellent study of various pawn structures), and the 60-minute course Bishop against Knight, to name but a few.

About Adrian Mikhalchishin

Born in 1954 in Lvov and a Grandmaster since 1978, is currently among the top 5 world trainers and the Chairman of the FIDE Trainers' Commission. The Ukrainian trained the team of USSR in 1980's, national teams of Slovenia, Poland and the Netherlands, and was the trainer of Anatoly Karpov (1980-1986), he trained Zsuzsa Polgar, Alexander Beliavsky, Maja Chiburdanidze, Arkadij Naiditsch and Vassily Ivanchuk.


Born in the US, he grew up in Paris, France, where he completed his Baccalaureat, and after college moved to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He had a peak rating of 2240 FIDE, and was a key designer of Chess Assistant 6. In 2010 he joined the ChessBase family as an editor and writer at ChessBase News. He is also a passionate photographer with work appearing in numerous publications.
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