Trouble finding good moves? Find bad ones!

1/17/2004 – If you play too many blunders maybe you just need practice looking for them. You have to admit that makes sense in a twisted way and here is your chance. We have an even dozen tactical positions in which you have to find the worst move, not the best. You'll hone your defensive skills and your ability to calculate. Think it's easy to find bad moves? Think again.

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A dirty dozen blunders

The following is a selection from a section of a recent issue of Black Belt, a weekly training e-mail newsletter from A previous, and easier, "tactics with a twist" section is here.

We continue to look for ways to make tactics practice more fun, more challenging, and more practical than the old "find the crusher in the diagram." Here you have to find the worst move from the options given. Simple, but not easy.

Get some paper or open a text document or tell your secretary to take dictation for this one. Go through each position and choose the blunder from the options listed. This means finding the worst move in the position. Sometimes the other moves aren't that great either, but this is about recognizing threats and learning to play defense.

If you can find the blunder that means you can avoid the blunder. Don't just note down a, b, or c. Give the lines in all the variations if you have the time. Several of these are very difficult so don't just find what you think is a killer refutation of one of the moves and then jump to the next one. Examine all the options carefully. Of course you will also examine the position itself carefully first, right? Being aware of the general tactical potential in a position is key to both finding and avoiding killing tactical shots.

If you notice several themes reoccurring it's no coincidence. All of these positions are selected from recent (2002-2003) Master games that started with the Sicilian Defense! They aren't all thematic, but the entire games are below and on the replay/download page so you can see the evolution.

a) Rd1 - b) Qc5 - c) Nd3
a) ..Ne6 b) ..Rg8 c) ..Bc5

a) Rg1 - b) bxc5 - c) Qg3
a) Rbd1 b) Rgf1 c) Nf1

a) Bf5 - b) Bxb5 - c) Be3
a) Na4 b) Bxf5 c) f4

a) fxe4 - b) Qxe5
a) ..d5 b) ..Rfc8 c) ..f6

a) ..e5 - b) ..Bd8 - c) ..Nd7
a) exd6 b) Rd1 c) Rhf1

a) ..Bxd5 - b) ..gxf5 - c) ..Nc6
a) ..Qf5 b) ..Qh4 c) ..Qb4


Games and solutions

(1) Kuznetsov,V (2367) - Bachin,V (2459) [B45]
ch-RUS Boys U20 Vladimir RUS (9), 10.03.2002

B45: Sicilian Four Knights 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.Nc3 Nc6 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 Nf6 6.Nxc6 bxc6 7.e5 Nd5 8.Ne4 Qc7 9.f4 Qb6 10.c4 Bb4+ 11.Ke2 f5 12.Nf2 Ne7 [12...Nc7 13.Nd3 Be7 14.Be3 Qb8 15.Kf2 a5 16.Be2 Na6 17.b3 c5 18.Bf3 Bb7 19.Nb2 Qc8 20.Na4 Bxf3 21.Qxf3 Rb8 22.Rad1 0-0 23.Rd2 Rf7 24.Rhd1 Bf8 25.Nc3 Nb4 26.Nb5 a4 27.Kf1 Barua,D-Swathi,G/Edinburgh 2003/CBM 95 ext/1-0 (39)] 13.Be3 Bc5 14.Bxc5 Qxc5 15.Kf3N Believe it or not this has all been played before up till this jaunty king move. At first it may seem surprising that White is mated six moves afterward, but this is not an unusual phenomenon. Many miniature games are produced by a player following along a known line, expecting that the worst has been seen. [15.b3 Qb6 (15...a5 16.Qd6 Qxd6 17.exd6 Ng6 18.Nd3 a4 19.b4 Ba6 20.Rc1 Kf7 21.Kf3 Kf6 22.Nc5 Bc8 23.g3 e5 24.b5 cxb5 25.cxb5 Rb8 26.Be2 Re8 27.Rhe1 Bb7+ 28.Nxb7 Rxb7 29.Rc7 Rb6 30.Rxd7 Delion,H-Bokelbrink,U/Pinneberg 1998/EXT 2002/0-1 (59)) 16.Qd6 c5 17.Nd3 Ng6 18.Ke3 Qxd6 19.exd6 Kf7 20.Nxc5 Re8 21.Be2 e5 22.Bh5 Rb8 23.Bxg6+ hxg6 24.fxe5 Rxe5+ 25.Kd4 Re2 26.Rhe1 Rd2+ 27.Nd3 Bb7 28.Re7+ Kf6 29.Kc3 Rxg2 Papa,S-Janssen,R/Deizisau 2003/CBM 93 ext/0-1 (52); 15.Rc1!?+/=]

15...g5=/+ 16.g3 gxf4 17.gxf4 Ng6 18.h4 Nxf4! With just the queen and knight active it's easy to see how White missed this shot. 19.Qd6 [19.Kxf4 Theme: Deflection from f2 19...Qxf2+ Eliminates the defender f2 20.Qf3 Qd4+ 21.Kg3 Rg8+ 22.Kh3 Rb8] 19...Qb6 20.b4 Rg8 Diagram 1

21.Rd1?? [>=21.Qc5 Ng6 22.Nd3-/+; 21.Re1; 21.Nd3 Rg4! 22.Qc5 (22.Nxf4?? Rxf4+ 23.Kxf4 Qf2+ 24.Kg5 Qg3+ 25.Kh5 Qg6#) ] 21...Rg3+!! The same tactical theme as on move 18, but now with the rook. Black leaves two pieces en prise but mate is forced. [21...Rg3+ 22.Kxg3 Qe3+ 23.Kh2 Qxf2+ 24.Bg2 Qxg2#] 0-1

(2) Saulin,D (2450) - Brikov,I (2330) [B92]
Suetin Mem Tula RUS (2), 24.03.2002

B92: Sicilian Najdorf: 6 Be2 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e5 7.Nb3 Be7 8.0-0 0-0 9.Kh1 Be6 10.f4 Qc7 11.f5 Bc4 12.g4 d5 13.g5 Nxe4 14.Nxe4 dxe4 15.f6 Bd8 [15...Bxe2 16.Qxe2 Bd8 17.fxg7 Kxg7 18.Be3 Nc6 19.Qh5 Kg8 20.c3 Ne7 21.Rad1 Ng6 22.Nc5 Nf4 23.Qh6 Qc6 24.Nd7 Qxh6 25.gxh6 Re8 26.Rxf4 1-0 Barua,D-Sharma,D/Muzaffapur 1998/EXT 2002 (26)] 16.fxg7 Kxg7 17.Be3 Be7 18.Nd4N [18.c3 a5 19.Bxc4 Qxc4 20.Qg4 Nc6 21.Nd2 Qd3 22.Rae1 a4 23.Nxe4 Qc4 24.Rf6 Qxa2 25.Rh6 Rh8 26.Nf6 Rad8 27.Rg1 a3 28.bxa3 Qc2 29.Rh3 Kf8 30.g6 fxg6 31.Qe6 h5 32.Rf3 Kg7 Babaev,R-Danner,G/Batumi 2002/CBM 90/0-1 (53)] 18...Bxe2 [18...exd4? 19.Qxd4+ Kg8 20.Bxc4]

19.Nf5+ [19.Nxe2 Rd8 20.Qe1 Qxc2+/=] 19...Kh8 20.Qxe2 Nc6 21.Qh5 Nd8? [21...Rad8 22.Nh6 (22.Nxe7 Nxe7 23.Rxf7 Rxf7 24.Qxf7 Nd5 25.Qxc7 Nxc7+/=) 22...f5 23.Nxf5+-] 22.Rf2 Diagram 2 [22.Rf4 exf4 23.Bd4+ f6 24.g6+-; 22.Qh6 Ne6]

22...Bc5?? Abandoning control of f6 is fatal. [>=22...Ne6+/- 23.Nh6 f6 24.Nf7+ Rxf7 25.Qxf7; 22...Rg8 23.Nh6 Rg7 24.Raf1] 23.Qh6+- Ne6 24.Qf6+ [24.Qf6+ Kg8 25.Nh6#] 1-0

(3) Lengyel,B (2354) - Kongsted,C (2213) [B62]
FSIM June Budapest HUN (9), 09.06.2002

B62: Sicilian: Richter-Rauzer: 6...e6: Unusual White 7th moves 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Bg5 e6 7.Bb5 Qb6 8.Bxf6 gxf6 9.Nb3 a6 10.Be2 Qc7 11.0-0 [11.a4 b6 12.Nd4 Bb7 13.Nxc6 Qxc6 14.Qd4 Rg8 15.Bf3 Qc5 16.Qd3 0-0-0 17.0-0 h5 18.Kh1 h4 19.h3 Kb8 20.Ra3 Qe5 21.Rb3 d5 22.Bg4 Bc5 23.exd5 f5 24.Be2 Rxd5 25.Nxd5 Bxd5 Kamsky,G-Kramnik,V/Monte Carlo 1994/CBM 40 ext/0-1 (51)] 11...b6 12.f4 Be7N [12...Bb7 13.Rf3 Rg8 14.Qf1 Ne7 15.f5 e5 16.Rd1 b5 17.a3 Qb6+ 18.Kh1 Rc8 19.Rfd3 d5 20.exd5 Rxc3 21.bxc3 Rg5 22.g4 h5 23.Bf3 hxg4 24.Be4 Nc8 25.Qg1 Qc7 26.Qe1 Nd6 27.Bg2 Lengyel,B-Jakab,A/Budapest 2002/CBM 91 ext/1/2-1/2 (46)]

13.Kh1 Bb7 14.Bh5 Bf8? [14...Kf8 15.f5+/=] 15.Rf3 [15.f5 0-0-0 16.fxe6 fxe6+/-] 15...0-0-0 [>=15...Rg8!?=] 16.Nd5+/- exd5 17.exd5 Ne5 18.fxe5 dxe5 19.Rc3 Bc5 20.Nd2 [>=20.Nxc5 bxc5 21.Bf3+/-] 20...Rxd5 21.b4? [21.Bf3!? Qd7 22.Bxd5 Qxd5 23.Qg4+ Kb8 24.Rd3=/+] 21...Rhd8 22.Qg4+ Kb8 23.Nb3 Qc6?? Diagram 3 [>=23...e4 24.bxc5 Qe5 25.Bxf7 R5d7=/+]

24.bxc5?? [>=24.Rg1! f5 25.Qe2+/-; 24.Qg3? Qb5!] 24...Rd1+! [24...Rd1+ 25.Rxd1 Rxd1+ 26.Qxd1 Qxg2#] 0-1

(4) Yegiazarian,A (2567) - Olcayoz,A (2294) [B23]
3rd IECC Batumi GEO (8), 20.06.2002

B23: Closed Sicilian: Lines without g3 1.e4 c5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.Bb5 d6 4.Bxc6+ bxc6 5.f4 g6 6.Nf3 Bg7 7.d3 Nh6 8.0-0 f6 [8...0-0 9.Qe1 Bg4 10.f5 e6 11.f6 1-0 Papargiriou,A-Kapnisis,S/Kalithea 2002/EXT 2004 (11)] 9.Kh1N [9.Qe1 0-0 10.b3 (10.Kh1 Nf7 11.Be3 Rb8 12.b3 Qa5 13.a4 f5 14.Bd2 Qc7 15.exf5 Bxf5 16.Qg3 Qd7 17.Rae1 c4 18.bxc4 Rb2 19.Rc1 d5 20.cxd5 cxd5 21.Nb5 d4 22.Qf2 e5 23.fxe5 Nxe5 24.Qxd4 Nxf3 Egorov,E-Yuferov,S/Tula 2001/EXT 2002/1/2-1/2 (50)) 10...Nf7 11.Rb1 (11.Bd2 f5 12.Rd1 e5 13.fxe5 Nxe5 14.Nxe5 Bxe5 15.Bf4 Bd4+ 16.Be3 Qg5 17.Bxd4 cxd4 18.Nb1 Bd7 19.Qd2 Qxd2 20.Nxd2 c5 21.Rde1 Rad8 22.e5 Be6 23.exd6 Rxd6 24.Re5 Rc8 25.Rfe1 Kf7 Lalic,S-Botsari,A/Elista 1998/CBM 66 ext/1-0 (57)) 11...f5 12.Bd2 e5 13.fxe5 Nxe5 14.Nxe5 Bxe5 15.Bf4 Bd4+ 16.Be3 Qg5 17.Bxd4 cxd4 18.Ne2 c5 19.Nf4 Bd7 20.Nh3 Qh6 21.Nf2 f4 22.Qd2 g5 23.Rbe1 Rae8 Houska,J-Fakhiridou,E/Elista 1998/CBM 66 ext/0-1 (39)]

9...Nf7 10.d4 cxd4 11.Nxd4 c5 12.Nde2 f5 13.exf5 gxf5 14.Ng3 e6 15.Nh5 Bxc3 16.bxc3 Bb7?? [16...Rb8 17.Rf3-/+] 17.Rb1 [17.Re1 Ke7+/=] 17...Bc6 [>=17...Rb8 18.Ng7+ Kd7 19.Rxb7+ Rxb7-/+] 18.Be3? [>=18.Re1 Ke7 19.Ng3+/=; 18.Qe2 Rg8 19.Qxe6+ Kf8] 18...Rg8-+ 19.Ng3 Qh4 20.Qe1? [>=20.Kg1-+] 20...Qh3 21.Qf2 h5 [21...Nh6] 22.Rg1 Rg4 Diagram 4 [22...Nh6]

23.Rbd1?? [23.Rgf1 Avoiding mate but losing the knight. 23...Rh4 24.Qg1 Qxg3 25.Bf2 Qxf4 26.Bxh4 Qxh4 27.Rbe1-+; 23.Rbd1?? Qxh2+ 24.Kxh2 Rh4#; 23.Nf1 Kd7 White has no answer to Rag8.] 0-1

(5) Pavlovic,S (2354) - Genov,P (2526) [B80]
Open Aegean Ch Ikaros GRE (6), 18.07.2002

B80: Sicilian Scheveningen: 6 g3 and 6 Be3, including English Attack 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be3 e6 7.f3 b5 8.g4 Nfd7 9.Qd2 Nb6 10.Qf2 N8d7 11.0-0-0 Bb7 12.h4 Rc8 13.Bd3 Rxc3 14.bxc3 d5 [14...Qc7 15.Nb3 Na4 16.Bd2 d5 17.exd5 Bxd5 18.Be4 Ndb6 19.Rhe1 Qd6 20.Be3 Qa3+ 21.Kd2 Nc4+ 22.Ke2 Bxe4 23.fxe4 Nxc3+ 24.Kf1 Nxd1 25.Rxd1 Nxe3+ 26.Qxe3 Be7 27.Qc3 0-0 28.g5 g6 29.Rd7 Lauria,A-Aleksic,N/Porto San Giorgo 2003/CBM 95 ext/0-1 (47)] 15.Ne2 Na4 16.g5 Qc7 The isolani on c3 becomes a target 17.exd5?N [17.Qe1 Ne5 18.Rf1 Ba3+ 19.Kb1 dxe4 20.fxe4 0-0 21.h5 Nc4 22.Bc1 Bxc1 23.Kxc1 Ne3 24.g6 hxg6 25.Rh1 Qc5 26.hxg6 fxg6 27.Qg1 Nxd1 28.Kxd1 Qxg1+ 29.Rxg1 Nc5 30.e5 Nxd3 31.cxd3 Rf5 Brondum,E-Maksimenko,A/Copenhagen 1995/CBM 47 ext/1-0 (32); 17.Kd2 Ne5 18.Bf4 Bd6 19.Qg3 Nxc3 20.Nxc3 Nc4+ 21.Ke2 Bxf4 22.Qe1 0-0 23.Bxc4 Qxc4+ 24.Kf2 Be5 25.Ne2 dxe4 26.f4 e3+ 27.Kxe3 Qe4+ 28.Kf2 0-1 Cukerman,S-Antoniewski,R/Menorca 1996/Juniors (28); >=17.Kb1=] 17...Bxd5-+ 18.Bf4 e5 Diagram 5

19.Bf5?? [>=19.Bxb5 This discovery against d5 holds on best. 19...Bc6 20.Bxa4 Bxa4 21.Be3-+; 19.Be3 Bxa2 20.Kd2] 19...Ba3+ 20.Kb1 [20.Kd2 Nb2 21.Bh2-+] 20...Qc4 21.Bxd7+ Ke7 22.Rxd5 Nxc3+ [22...Nxc3+ 23.Nxc3 Qb4+ 24.Ka1 Qb2#] 0-1

(6) Lazor,V (2226) - Tadic,B (2465) [B40]
Battle of Senta Open Senta YUG (2), 20.07.2002

B40: Sicilian: 2...e6, Unusual lines 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Bc5 5.Nb3 Bb6 6.Bd3 Ne7 7.Nc3 0-0 8.Qe2 Nbc6 9.Be3 f5 10.Bxb6 Qxb6 11.exf5 Nxf5 12.0-0 d5 13.Kh1N [13.Rad1 a5 14.Bxf5 Rxf5 15.Qb5 Qc7 16.Nd4 Nxd4 17.Rxd4 Bd7 18.Qd3 Raf8 19.Qg3 Qb6 20.Rg4 R5f7 21.b3 d4 22.Ne4 e5 23.Rg5 Qc6 24.Rxe5 Qxc2 25.f3 Bc6 26.Qf2 Qd3 27.Re6 h6 Dilic,R-Sale,S/Portoroz 1995/CBM 46 ext/0-1 (37)] 13...Bd7 14.Rae1 Attacking the backward pawn on e6 14...Rf6 Diagram 6

15.f4?? Removing control of g3 and opening the a7-g1 diagonal at the same time. [>=15.Na4 Qc7 16.Nac5=; 15.Bxf5 Rxf5 16.Na4] 15...Ng3+ [15...Ng3+ 16.hxg3 Rh6+ 17.Qh5 Rxh5#] 0-1

(7) Managadze,N (2428) - Tsilidis,A (2316) [B22]
6th Open Korinthos GRE (8), 30.07.2002

B22: Sicilian: 2 c3 1.e4 c5 2.c3 d6 3.d4 Nf6 4.dxc5 Nc6 5.Qc2 d5 6.Nd2 dxe4 [6...e6 7.exd5 exd5 8.Nb3 Be7 9.Nf3 0-0 10.Be2 Ne4 11.Be3 Bf5 12.Bd3 a5 13.a4 Bg6 14.0-0 Qc7 15.Rad1 Rad8 16.Rfe1 Qc8 17.Qc1 Rfe8 18.Bb5 Bh5 19.Be2 Bf8 20.Qc2 h6 21.Nfd4 Godena,M-Aronian,L/Batumi 2002/CBM 90/1-0 (37)] 7.Nxe4 Qd5 8.Bd3 Ne5N [8...Nxe4 9.Bxe4 Qxc5 10.Be3 Qa5 11.Nf3 g6 12.Nd4 Nxd4 13.Bxd4 e5 14.Be3 Bg7 15.0-0 0-0 16.Rfd1 Qc7 17.Rd5 b6 18.Rd2 Rb8 19.c4 Be6 20.b3 f5 21.Bd5 Bxd5 22.Rxd5 f4 23.Bd2 Markovic,M-Brankovic,D/Niska Banja 1996/EXT 2002/1-0 (51)] 9.Nxf6+ exf6 10.Be4 Qxc5 11.Nf3 [11.Bxh7? g6 12.f4 Ng4 13.Qe2+ Be7 14.Bxg6 fxg6-+] 11...f5 12.Be3 Qa5 13.Nxe5 Diagram 7

13...Qxe5?? Losing to a surprising bishop sacrifice. [>=13...fxe4 14.Qxe4 Allowing a discovery always looks suicidal, but Black has a saving counter. 14...f5!+/- (14...Be6 15.Qxb7) 15.Nc4+ fxe4 16.Nxa5] 14.Bxb7!+- Bxb7 15.Qa4+ Kd8 [15...Ke7 16.0-0-0 Qc7+- 17.Rhe1 Be4 18.f3] 16.0-0-0+ Kc8 17.Rd4 [>=17.Bf4 Qe6 18.Qa5+-] 17...Qe6 [17...Bd5 18.Qa5 Rb8+-] 18.Rhd1 Bc6 19.Qa6+ Bb7 [19...Kc7 20.Bf4+ Bd6 21.Rxd6 Qxd6 22.Rxd6 Bd7 23.Re6+ Kd8 24.Qa5+ Kc8 25.Qc7#] 20.Rc4+ Kb8 [20...Qxc4 21.Qxc4+ Bc5 22.Qxc5+ Bc6 23.Qxc6+ Kb8 24.Bf4#] 21.Rd8+ [21.Rd8+ Qc8 22.Rcxc8+ Bxc8 23.Qxc8#] 1-0

(8) Arzumanian,G (2461) - Snatenkov,V (2225) [B47]
4th Stage Russian Cup Samara RUS (1), 26.07.2002

B47: Sicilian: Taimanov: 5 Nc3 Qc7 6 f4, 6 g3 and 6 Be2 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.Nc3 Qc7 6.Be2 a6 7.0-0 Nf6 8.Kh1 Bb4 9.Qd3 0-0 10.Bg5 b5N [10...Be7 11.f4 d6 12.Rad1 Rd8 (12...Bd7 13.Qg3 Kh8 14.Nf3 Rad8 15.Bd3 h6 16.e5 dxe5 17.fxe5 Ng8 18.Bf4 Nb4 19.Ne4 Nxd3 20.cxd3 Bc6 21.Nf6 Qb6 22.Nxg8 Rxg8 23.Ng5 Bxg5 24.Bxg5 Rd7 25.Qh4 Kh7 26.Rf6 Rh8 27.Bxh6 Wortel,M-Bar,R/Tallinn 1997/EXT 98/1-0 (35)) 13.Qg3 Nxd4 14.Rxd4 b5 15.e5 Ne8 16.Rfd1 Bb7 17.Bxe7 Qxe7 18.f5 dxe5 19.Qxe5 Rxd4 20.Rxd4 Qg5 21.Ne4 Qxf5 22.Qxf5 exf5 23.Nd6 Nxd6 24.Rxd6 g6 25.Kg1 Dominguez,C-Bielicki,C/Mar del Plata 1960/MCD/1/2-1/2 (52); 10...Bxc3 11.bxc3 Qe5 12.f4 Qxe4 13.Qh3 Qg6 14.Bd3 Ne4 15.Nxc6 bxc6 16.Be7 Re8 17.Bd6 c5 18.Bxc5 Bb7 19.Bd4 f5 20.Rae1 d6 21.Rb1 Qf7 22.Rb6 Rad8 23.Qh4 Rd7 24.h3 e5 25.fxe5 Ivanovic,B-Rublevsky,S/Tivat 1995/CBM 48 ext/[Belov]/0-1 (26); 10...Qd6 11.Nxc6 Qxd3 12.Ne7+ Bxe7 13.cxd3 d6 14.f4 h6 15.Bh4 Bd7 16.Bf3 Nd5 17.exd5 Bxh4 18.dxe6 fxe6 19.g3 Bf6 20.Rad1 Bxc3 21.bxc3 d5 22.c4 Bc6 23.Rfe1 dxc4 24.Bxc6 bxc6 25.dxc4 Sibarevic,M-Matulovic,M/Banja Luka 1987/EXT 97/1/2-1/2 (63)] 11.f4 Nxd4 12.Qxd4 Bc5 13.Qd3 Bb7 14.Rad1 Bc6 15.e5 Nd5 16.Nxd5 Bxd5 17.Qg3 Be4 18.Bf3 Bxf3 19.Rxf3 Diagram 8 [19.Qxf3 h6 20.Bh4 d5+/=; 19.gxf3?! Kh8=]

19...d5?? [>=19...Rfc8+/- Clearing f8 for the bishop is the only way to make a game of it. 20.Bf6 (20.f5 Bf8) 20...Bf8; 19...Rfe8; 19...f6 20.exf6 g6 Avoids mate.] 20.Bf6 g6 21.Qh4 Rfc8 22.Qxh7+!! [22.Qxh7+ Kxh7 23.Rh3+ Kg8 24.Rh8#] 1-0

(9) Cubas,J (2370) - Chemin,V (2316) [B23]
VI BCX Brasilia BRA (7), 29.08.2002

B23: Closed Sicilian: Lines without g3 1.e4 c5 2.f4 Nc6 3.Nf3 e6 4.Nc3 d5 5.Bb5 a6 6.Bxc6+ bxc6 7.d3 Nf6 8.e5 Nd7 9.0-0 Be7 10.Qe2 [10.Kh1 a5 11.Qe1 Ba6 12.f5 Qc7 13.Qg3 g6 14.fxe6 fxe6 15.Qh3 0-0-0 16.Qxe6 Rde8 17.Nxd5 cxd5 18.Qxa6+ Kb8 19.e6 Nf6 20.Ne5 1-0 Hill,S-Bliznyuk,A/Canberra 1997/EXT 2003 (20); 10.Qe1 0-0 11.Kh1 a5 12.Qg3 f5 13.d4 c4 14.Ng5 Nb6 15.Qe3 h6 16.Nf3 Nd7 17.Na4 Ba6 18.Rd1 Re8 19.Qf2 Bf8 20.Be3 Qe7 21.Nh4 Kh7 22.Qg3 Qf7 23.Rf1 Rab8 24.Rf3 Be7 Demange,J-Boudin,J/Montigny le Bretonneux 2003/EXT 2004/1-0 (50)] 10...0-0 11.Bd2 a5 12.b3N [12.Rae1 Nb6 13.Kh1 c4 14.d4 c5 15.Qe3 cxd4 16.Nxd4 Bc5 17.Nce2 f5 18.c3 Qe8 19.Rf2 a4 20.a3 Nd7 21.Qf3 Rb8 22.Bc1 Bb6 23.Rg1 Nc5 24.g4 Nd3 25.Rfg2 fxg4 26.Rxg4 Rf7 Alvarez Arandia,J-Cigales Jirout,J/Spain 1989/EXT 2004/1-0 (54)] 12...Nb6 13.a4 f6 14.exf6 gxf6 15.Rae1 Ra7 16.Kh1 Kh8 17.g4 Rg8 18.g5 Qe8 19.f5 Diagram 9

19...e5? Allowing a smashing breakthrough. [>=19...Bd8+/- 20.fxe6 Re7; 19...Nd7 20.fxe6 Nf8] 20.Nxe5!+- Bd7 [20...fxe5 21.Qxe5+ Rg7 22.f6] 21.g6 Bxf5 [21...Be6 22.Qh5 Bd8+-] 22.Nf7+ Kg7 23.Bh6+ Kxg6 24.Rxf5! Kxf5 Decoy to f5 [24...Kxf7 25.Qe6+ Kg6 26.Bf8 Qxf8 27.Rg1+ Kh6 28.Rh5+ Kxh5 29.Qh3#] 1-0

(10) Rewitz,P (2286) - Moingt,J (2284) [B34]
ECC Halkidiki GRE (1), 22.09.2002

B34: Sicilian: Accelerated Dragon with 5 Nc3: sidelines 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 g6 5.Nc3 Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Nxc6 bxc6 8.e5 Nd5 9.Nxd5 cxd5 10.Qxd5 Rb8 11.0-0-0 Qc7 12.f4 0-0 13.Qc5 Qb7 14.b3 [14.Bd4 Bh6 15.Qxe7 Bxf4+ 16.Kb1 Be3 17.b3 Bxd4 18.Rxd4 Qc7 19.Bc4 Qd8 20.Qxd8 Rxd8 21.Rf1 Rf8 22.Rdf4 Bb7 23.Rxf7 Rxf7 24.Rxf7 1-0 Widmer,S-Herbrechtsmeier,C/Leukerbad 2002/CBM 89 ext (24)] 14...d6 15.Qxa7 Qxa7N [15...Qc6 16.Bc4 Bf5 17.Qxe7 Qe4 18.Rd3 Qxg2 19.Rg1 Qa8 20.Rxd6 Qxa2 21.Rg2 Qa1+ 22.Kd2 Bxc2 23.Rg1 Qa2 24.Qa7 Bxb3+ 25.Qxa2 Bxa2 26.Bxa2 Rb2+ 27.Kd3 Rxa2 28.Bd2 Bh6 29.Rd4 f6 30.e6 Al Hadarani,H-Saeed,N/Graz 1981/EXT 99/1/2-1/2 (34); 15...dxe5 16.Qxb7 Bxb7 17.Rd7 exf4 18.Ba7 Rfd8 19.Rc7 f3 20.Bxb8 Rxb8 21.Rxb7 Rxb7 22.gxf3 Bc3 23.Bc4 Rd7 24.Rd1 Bb2+ 25.Kxb2 Rxd1 26.a4 Rd7 27.b4 Kf8 28.a5 e6 29.a6 Ke7 30.Bb5 Bollore,J-Monroy,C/Queven 1999/EXT 2001/1-0 (45)] 16.Bxa7 Ra8 17.Bd4 Bg4 18.Re1 Rxa2 19.Kb1 Rfa8 20.Bd3 R2a5 21.Bb2 Be6 22.Be4 R8a6 Diagram 10

23.exd6?? An easy one, we hope! Opening the long diagonal is suicide. [>=23.Rd1+/- Just about any move other than exd6 keeps an edge for White. 23...h5 24.c4; 23.Rhf1 dxe5 24.fxe5 Bxe5 25.Bxe5 Rxe5 26.Bd3 Rxe1+ 27.Rxe1] 23...Ra1+ [23...Ra1+ 24.Bxa1 Rxa1#] 0-1

(11) Rudolf,H (2348) - Schammo,J (2205) [B43]
ECC Halkidiki GRE (5), 26.09.2002

B43: Sicilian: Kan Variation: 5 Nc3 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6 5.Nc3 b6 6.Be2N [6.Bc4 Qc7 7.Qd3 Bb7 8.Be3 Bb4 9.a3 Bxc3+ 10.Qxc3 Nf6 11.f3 b5 12.Bb3 Qxc3+ 13.bxc3 d5 14.e5 Nfd7 15.f4 0-0 16.0-0 Rc8 17.Bd2 Nc5 18.Rf3 Ne4 19.Be1 Nc6 20.Nxc6 Rxc6 Hillenbrand,A-Wagle,R/Karlsruhe/Schoeneck 2000/EXT 2001/0-1 (45); 6.g3 Bb7 7.Bg2 d6 8.0-0 Nd7 9.h3 Ngf6 10.g4 g6 11.Nde2 Qc7 12.Ng3 Bg7 13.Bf4 Ne5 14.Bxe5 dxe5 15.Qd2 0-0 16.Rfd1 Rfd8 17.Qe3 Rd4 18.Nge2 Rdd8 19.Rxd8+ Rxd8 20.b3 b5 Vuckovic,A-Sadvakasov,D/ 2003/EXT 2004/0-1 (32)] 6...Bb7 7.0-0 Qc7 8.f4 Bc5 9.Kh1 Nf6 10.Bf3 d5 [10...d6!?+/=] 11.exd5+/- exd5 12.Re1+ Kf8 13.Nf5 g6 14.Nxd5 Nxd5 15.Bxd5 Diagram 11

15...gxf5? Allowing White to deflect the queen from d8. [>=15...Bxd5 16.Qxd5 Nc6+- 17.Be3; 15...Nc6 16.Ne3 Kg7] 16.Bxb7+- Qxb7 [16...Ra7 17.Qh5 h6+-] 17.Qd8+ Kg7 18.Qg5+ Kf8 19.Qh6+ [19.Qh6+ Kg8 20.Re8+ Bf8 21.Qxf8#] 1-0

(12) Vajda,L (2576) - Manolache,M (2437) [B22]
ch-ROM Curtea de Arges ROM (3.1), 27.11.2002

B22: Sicilian: 2 c3 1.e4 c5 2.c3 d5 3.exd5 Qxd5 4.d4 Nf6 5.Nf3 g6 6.Qb3 cxd4 7.Bc4 Qe4+ 8.Kf1 e6 9.cxd4 [9.Nbd2 Qf4 10.Nxd4 Nc6 11.N2f3 Qc7 12.g3 a6 13.Bf4 Bd6 14.Bxd6 Qxd6 15.Rd1 Nxd4 16.Rxd4 Qc6 17.Rf4 b5 18.Rxf6 bxc4 19.Qa3 Bb7 20.Rxf7 0-0-0 21.Rg1 Rd1+ 22.Ke2 Rd7 23.Rf8+ Rd8 Vajda,L-Christiansen,L/Bled 2002/EXT 2003/1/2-1/2 (44)] 9...a6 10.Nc3N [10.Bg5 Bg7 11.Nc3 Qf5 12.Re1 Nc6 13.d5 Na5 14.Qa4+ b5 15.Qxa5 bxc4 16.Qb4 Qd3+ 17.Kg1 h6 18.Ne5 Qf5 19.Qd6 Qxg5 20.Qc6+ Nd7 21.Nxd7 Bxd7 22.Qxa8+ Ke7 23.d6+ Kxd6 24.Ne4+ Ke7 Ekstroem,R-Belotti,B/Charleville 2000/CBM 79 ext/0-1 (25)] 10...Qf5 11.Ne5 Ng4 12.Nxg4 Qxg4 13.Be3 Nd7 14.Re1 Be7 15.d5 Ne5 16.Be2 Diagram 12

16...Qf5? [>=16...Qh4!? 17.Qa4+ (17.Rd1) 17...Qxa4 18.Nxa4 exd5+/-; 16...Qb4?! 17.Qxb4 Bxb4 18.Bd4 f6 19.f4] 17.g4!+- Boxing in the queen and winning a piece. 17...Qf6 [17...Nxg4 18.Qa4+ Bd7 19.Qxg4] 18.d6! Bxd6 19.Ne4 Qe7 [19...Qd8 20.Rd1 0-0 21.Rxd6 Qc7 22.Nf6+ Kg7 23.Bh6+ Kxh6 24.Qe3+ Kg7 25.Qxe5 Kh8 26.Nd5+ f6 27.Nxc7 fxe5 28.Nxa8 b5+-] 20.Bg5 Qc7 21.Nxd6+ Qxd6 22.Rd1 Qc7 [22...Qxd1+ 23.Qxd1 0-0+-] 23.Qc3 Qxc3 24.Rd8# [24.bxc3 Nd7=/+] 1-0

The preceding was a selection from a section of a recent issue of Black Belt, a training e-mail newsletter from Mig's

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genem genem 7/7/2014 07:31
Interesting puzzles. I think there are two types of puzzles on this page.
Puzzles #2 versus #3 are different types.

In #2 the color on turn, in this case Black, might survive even if he could magically skip his turn by playing the null move. The student is looking for the Black move that *creates* a huge problem where none currently exists.
I had expected most of the puzzles to be like #2.

But in #3 the null move fails because it neglects to negate a huge problem that *already* exists. The page of puzzles seems to contain several that are like this.

Both puzzle types have value, but personally I prefer the puzzle type that #2 represents.