Monday, May 19 IM Valeri Lilov Taking on Closed Positions (strategy, middlegame)
Many chess players like to play opened, highly tactical positions in which they can look for attacks and create most threats against the opponent. Nevertheless, there are some games in which the opponent chooses to avoid exchanging pawns in attempt to block and close the position. When that happens, we find ourselves in the so called closed positions. The ability to evaluate and correctly plan our pieces is all that matters in these kind of positions. Learn how to play them with IM Valeri Lilov!
Tuesday, May 20 GM Leonid Kritz First Loss of New World Champion (opening, strategy)
An important game from the theoretical view point. Not because white managed to come up with anything new, but rather because black did show how you should not play this line. The most interesting aspect of the game is that Magnus Carlsen lost – it happens so rarely that any such game is worth looking at. Obviously, if black played normally with h5 and Bd8 instead of trying to bring his king to c8, his position would remain very solid. One more example to remind you how you should play to keep the position drawish.
Wednesday, May 21 FM Dennis Monokroussos The Queen’s Gambit and Friends. Part 11: Sokolov’s Slimy Semi-Tarrasch (opening)
Many chessplayers are unaware of the Semi-Tarrasch, and those that know of it generally don’t know much about it. It is coming back into fashion, at least somewhat, so it’s worth taking a little time to know what’s going on. In this video I go through some of the moveorder issues with this variation, and then cover a razor-sharp gambit idea Ivan Sokolov employed to easily defeat an elite opponent. Beware, 1.d4 players!
Thursday, May 22 IM Bill Paschall A Thematic Pawn Sacrifice Against the Sicilian May 22 (middlegame, tactics)
White essays an interesting pawn sacrifice against the Sicilian. Black’s queen is drawn out of position and the game becomes very sharp. Black sacrifices a piece, but loses his way in the complications. A fine practical idea by Motylev brings home the full point.
Friday, May 23, GM Eugene Perelshteyn In the Steps of Petrosian: Positional Exchange Sacrifice May 23 (tactics)
In a super-solid Queen’s Gambit Declined, White uncorks a typical exchange sacrifice a la Petrosian. Superior pawn structure and strong knight dominate the rooks. Just as it seems that Black is able to consolidate, White plays a powerful fork with Ng4-f6! winning back an exchange. The attack on the king decides the game.