Understanding before Moving 22: Strong knight vs bad bishop - (2)

by ChessBase
4/11/2021 – Herman Grooten is an International Master, a renowned trainer and the author of several highly acclaimed books about chess training and chess strategy. In the 22nd instalment of his ChessBase show "Understanding before Moving", Herman shows another example of a strong knight who fights against a bad bishop. | Photo: Tommy Grooten

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In the previous show we saw how a strong knight can win against a bad bishop. Exchanging the right pieces is closely related to this theme. Finding out which pieces to exchange and which to keep is an art.

There was once a player who each time when he had to play against Tigran Petrosian ended up with a bad bishop against a knight, and wondered: "How does he manage to leave me with the bad pieces, while he keeps the good pieces?"

As so often, the pawn structure is important here as it defines good and bad bishops. In the following closed position White has two beautiful knights while Black has a bad bishop and a passive knight. White is clearly better but after Black's last move ... Ra8-a6 he has to be careful.

Why - and how should White proceed?

 

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