Monday, June 27 IM David Vigorito Shocking Sacrifice Befuddles Computers (tactics)
This was one of my strangest games ever. My opponent played a somewhat dubious opening. My position looked better (to both human eyes and computers), but my opponent came up with an amazing idea. Almost everything went wrong for me in this tournament, so it felt a bit unlucky, but I must give my opponent credit for such creativity!
Tuesday, June 28 IM Bill Paschall Fighting Chess From the European Championship (openings, endgame)
Black holds the balance in a sharp line of the exchange Grunfeld where white employed the offbeat 8.h3. Setting up an ideal double fianchetto formation, Piorun, one of Poland’s top young players; finds his way with creative idea of 13..Qe8 and the active 15…f6. White should be able to hold the balance, but falters after black finds a powerful combination with the original 22…Rxc4 ! Black allows an exchange of queens, but gains a slight initiative without any risk. Although the ending was tenable, white misses his chances and black converts a full point.
Wednesday, June 29 FM Dennis Monokroussos How to Attack Like a Kid at (Almost) 80 (strategy)
Nearly 80 years old at the time of this game, Viktor Korchnoi defeated Fabiano Caruana with the black pieces – and how! Caruana didn’t blunder anything, or fall into some sort of opening trap, or get slowly outplayed in a “boring” position due to his opponent’s many decades of experience. Nor was this Korchnoi defeating Caruana when he was but a tyke; Caruana was already over 2700 at the time of this game. Instead, Korchnoi played aggressive, energetic chess, flinging his pawns at his opponent’s kingside and defeating him with a direct attack. It’s easy to play this sort of chess when one is young (though playing this well is another matter), but one would never know to look at the game that Black was 61 years older than his opponent. It’s almost preposterous, but this is an illustration of what an incredible player the chess world has just lost.
Thursday, June 30 GM Eugene Perelshteyn Lesson From My Komodo Match, Part 3: Be Alert, No Matter How Safe Your Position Is (endgame, strategy)
GM Perelshteyn takes on best chess engine in the world, Komodo, in game 3 of the Handicap match. The opening goes great for White, as GM Perelshteyn retains the pawn with a comfortable position. It looks like White has no risk of losing, right? Well, see what happens in a few moves after only one mistake by White… The engine shows amazing endgame technique!
Friday, July 1 GM Bryan Smith A Repetoire Against the Modern With 4.Be3, Part2 (openings, tactics)
Besides 4…a6, Black has a much older and more solid option, 4…c6. Nevertheless, with calm positional play White can put series pressure on the opponent. In this video, we see how.