Sunday, October 05, 2008


Combinations 08.10.05

Morphy against Golmayo in an 1864 Havana simul.

After the 14th move, Morphy has a knight pinned to his opponent's King. The manner in which Morphy adds an attacker to the immobilized knight is very instructive. Enjoy.


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Monday, September 08, 2008


Max Lange Part 2

This is an update to the Sept 4 Max Lange post. It turns out that "my" Novelty (based on searching ChessBase 2003 Mega database) is on move 9, not move 7. I'm just relieved that my whole idea has not been played before. :)

Next time I guess I'll check ChessBase sooner. Of course, it could have been played since 2003 and I still would not know as that is my latest mega database.

I have also included White's best 12th move (left as an exercise in the last post) and made that the main line. This is all the result of deep study and research I am undertaking to try to improve my opening play.


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Thursday, September 04, 2008


Combinations 08.09.04 (Max Lange)

Here is some original opening research and analysis from yours truly that deals with an early Black deviation in the Max Lange Attack. I left White's best 12th move out of this file. What combination should White play on move 12?

The novelty (so far as I know) on Black's seventh move sets up Black's surprising eleventh move. Even with White's best 12th move this line appears to be playable for Black....what do you think?
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. d4 exd4 5. O-O {Now 5...Bc5 enters the Max Lange Atttack and 5...Nxe4 is the Anti-Max Lange Attack.} Be7 {This is a modest move that appears to give up the fight and give White an easy advantage. But can appearances be deceiving? 5...Be7 is not considered in ECO C Edition 2, 1981 nor MCO 15 2008. There is some coverage for it in the 1916 edition of Handbuch des Schachspie (Bilguer) -- a great resource for some old and out of fashion lines.}


Update: Black's seventh move does occur in the ChessBase 2003 Mega database twice but without what I believe is the correct followup (they both feature 10...Re8?! instead of 10...Bf5). They are below with light notes:

[Event "Ivrea WE op-B"]
[Site "Ivrea"]
[Date "2001.??.??"]
[Round "5"]
[White "Caresana, Alessandro"]
[Black "Vozza, Nicola"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C56"]
[PlyCount "61"]
[EventDate "2001.??.??"]
[Source "ChessBase"]
[SourceDate "2002.11.25"]

1. e4 e5 2. Bc4 Nf6 3. d4 exd4 4. Nf3 Nc6 5. O-O Nxe4 6. Nxd4 Be7 7. Nf5 Bf6 8.Qd5 O-O 9. Qxe4 d5 10. Bxd5 Re8 $6 (10... Bxf5) 11. Qc4 $6 (11. Bxc6 Rxe4 12.Bxe4 {+-}) 11... Ne5 12. Bxf7+ Nxf7 13. Ng3 Be6 14. Qb4 Nd6 15. Nc3 a5 16. Qc5 b6 17. Qh5 Bf7 18. Qf3 Nc4 19. Nce4 Be5 20. Ng5 Bg6 21. Rd1 Nd6 22. c3 h6 23.Qd5+ Nf7 24. Nxf7 Bxf7 25. Qf3 Qh4 26. Be3 Rf8 27. Bd4 Bb3 (27... Rae8 28. Bxe5 Rxe5 29. Rd4 Qe7 {+/=}) 28. Qc6 Bxd1 29. Qd5+ Rf7 $4 (29... Kh7 {+/-}) 30.Qxa8+ Kh7 31. Rxd1 1-0

[Event "Leipzig VfB op 5th"]
[Site "Leipzig"]
[Date "1998.??.??"]
[Round "2"]
[White "Bosse, Volkmar"]
[Black "Goessling, Guido"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "C56"]
[BlackElo "2140"]
[PlyCount "46"]
[EventDate "1998.03.??"]
[Source "ChessBase"]
[SourceDate "1998.11.10"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Bc4 Nf6 5. O-O Nxe4 6. Nxd4 Be7 7. Nf5 Bf6 8.Qd5 O-O 9. Qxe4 d5 10. Bxd5 Re8 $6 (10... Bxf5) 11. Bxf7+ $6 (11. Bxc6 Rxe4 12.Bxe4 Bxf5 13. Bxf5 {+- White has a rook and two pieces for the Queen.}) 11...Kxf7 12. Qg4 (12. Qf3 {=}) 12... Re5 13. Qh5+ Kg8 14. g4 Nd4 15. Nc3 g6 16.Nh6+ Kg7 17. Qh3 Bd7 18. Qd3 Bc6 19. f4 Ne2+ 20. Nxe2 Qxd3 21. fxe5 Qxe2 22.exf6+ Kf8 23. Rf2 Qe4 0-1

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Sunday, August 17, 2008


Combinations 08.08.17

Morphy-de Riviere Paris 1863.

"To this day Morphy is an unsurpassed master of the open games. Just how great was his significance is evident from the fact that after Morphy nothing substantially new has been created in this field. Every player- from beginner to master- should in this praxis return again and again to the games of the American genius." ~ Mikhail Botvinnik
In this game Morphy will twice remove a defender of the g5 square and then twice setup a skewer of the c7 square.


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Tuesday, August 05, 2008


Combinations 08.08.05

Morphy-Ware, New York simul 1859 at knight odds.

A pawn at at f7 is pinned to the king. Then a rook at f7 is pinned to the king. Later there is a threat of pinning the rook at f7 along the other diagonal to the queen. Finally, Morphy removes the guard at h6 to win material and simplify to a won ending.

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Monday, August 04, 2008


Combinations 08.08.04

Morphy-Perrin, New York Simul 1859. Tactical devices featured in today's game include Decoying, and Double Attack.

A Chess Tragedy in 42 moves.


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Sunday, August 03, 2008


Combinations 08.08.03

Now for something completely different. NoTB - vlandre, a FICS 5 minute blitz game from yesterday. NoTB is my handle at FICS. Certainly not the same quality as a Morphy game but still "interesting." I was inspired by all of the Morphy games I have been reviewing to play an Evans Gambit. The opening went well, for a while...See if you can spot the mate in one (!) that I missed at the end.


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Saturday, August 02, 2008


Combinations 08.08.02

Morphy-Montgomery, New York simul, 1859.
This knight odds game features double attacks, clearance, pinning, and overloading.

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Friday, August 01, 2008


Combinations 08.08.01

I'm going to be continuing the "Daily Tactics" series but under the name "Combinations." I'm changing the name because I think "Combinations" is more specific for what I am usually describing (all chess moves are tactics, not all tactics are combinations) and dropping "Daily" as I have not kept up to that frequency.

Today, we have no pictures, just words. :)

Here are some commonly used terms when discussing chess tactics and combinations.

attraction: to attract an enemy piece onto an unfavorable square (Winning Chess Tactics for Juniors by Lou Hays, p. 57).

combination: a rearrangement of the connection of pieces of both sides, which forces a coordinated connection of contacts, which is advantageous to one side. (Chess Tactics for Advanced Players by Yuri Averbakh, p. 211).

clearance: to clear a square or uncover a line (Winning Chess Tactics for Juniors by Lou Hays, p. 61).

decoy: see attraction.

deflection: see diversion.

diversion: divert an enemy piece from an important post (Winning Chess Tactics for Juniors by Lou Hays, p. 73).

double attack: a simultaneous attack on two enemy pieces. (Winning Chess Tactics for Juniors by Lou Hays, p. 45) Or, more generally, two or more simultaneous "attacks and threats of the first or second order." (Chess Tactics for Advanced Players by Yuri Averbakh, p. 54).

overloading: the exploitation of an enemy unit which must protect at least two other important pieces (or squares). (Winning Chess Tactics for Juniors by Lou Hays, p. 67).

pin: an attack on an enemy piece which is situated on a straight line (i.e. a file, a rank or a diagonal) and in front of a more valuable piece (Winning Chess Tactics for Juniors by Lou Hays, p. 25).

space clearance: see clearance.

strategy: a plan designed to achieve a particular long-term aim.

tactic: an action or strategy planned to achieve a specific end.


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