Happy New Year! Don't give up!

by Jonathan Speelman
1/6/2019 – In his first Agony/Ecstasy column of 2019, GM JON SPEELMAN hears from a Turkish sociologist who focuses on the Queen's Gambit Declined. The games show why it's important to keep fighting, even when you fear a loss. Feel free to send in your own games! Jon can always use more material from readers. If your games are selected for the Agony column, not only will you get free detailed commentary of your games by one of chess’s great authors and instructors, and former world no. 4 player, but you also win a free three-month ChessBase Premium Account!

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Speelman's Agony #90

Many thanks first to everybody who's sent games into the drop box in recent weeks. Two requests though: Please include an email address so that I can contact you. And please use either PGN or a compressed ChessBase database CBV. (In ChessBase, click Menu→Database→Backup database, or hit Ctrl+Z.) 

A Happy New Year to all readers and please do keep on sending your games for me to dissect.

This week's pair of games are by Ayhan Anil, a Turkish sociologist who writes:

Ayhan Anil“I am 34 years old an amateur chess enthusiast from İstanbul Turkey. 

I am a sociologist as well as a chess trainer of 3 kids who are in between 8 to 10 years old. (I sent already the photo of my students!) 

Although I admire Alekhine's exciting attacking playing style, I can say that I am a positional player. I Learned a lot from Capablanca and Botvinnik's games. I like to study and improve endgame technics which is vital for every chess players I think. So I am trying to teach 20 years chess experience to my students who are already so successful in the age group tournaments in Turkey.

My highest rating so far was 1896 FIDE Elo and I hope to improve on this in the near future. 

In both games, Ayhan is Black in the Queen's Gambit Declined and both are very complicated. 

In the Agony game, Ayhan gained the advantage against a stronger opponent but then blundered decisively at the last. In the Ecstasy that follows, he lost a pawn in complications but kept on fighting well and got his reward when his opponent went wrong.

Ayhan sent introductions to both games but the annotations themselves are all mine.


Click or tap the second game in the list below the board to switch

A World Champion's Repertoire against the Queen's Gambit Declined

This DVD offers a complete repertoire for handling this solid opening, often featuring a dynamic approach to pose the opponent more practical problems. Both of the main continuations 3...Nf6 and 3...Be7 are covered in two separate parts.

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To submit your games just upload a PGN or ChessBase file (.pgn or .cbv archive), along with your name and e-mail address. Send one success story (Ecstasy) and one loss (Agony).

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See also:

Jonathan Speelman, born in 1956, studied mathematics but became a professional chess player in 1977. He was a member of the English Olympic team from 1980–2006 and three times British Champion. He played twice in Candidates Tournaments, reaching the semi-final in 1989. He twice seconded a World Championship challenger: Nigel Short and then Viswanathan Anand against Garry Kasparov in London 1993 and New York 1995.


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