Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Monday Nights are Full of Chess - Averaging 14 Players 102119

Fall Time is Chess Time!
Fall is chess season! Chess Nights at LCCC have been averaging 14 players for the last five weeks! Our junior members (the kids!) are averaging 4 players a week. So if you have a young chess player, be sure to bring him or her to the Club on Monday Nights.

And don't forget about our special Kid's Night on the second Monday of every month. The next one is November 11th, but of course any Monday night - any player or wanna learner is welcome any night!

Now here is a French Defense miniature. 

The game is called a miniature because it wraps up in less than 25 moves.

White to make move #18
In this position, Igor3000, the chess computer Grandmaster, gives Black a (-.4) of a pawn lead. Now don't get excited. White starts the game with a (+.3) advantage every time. In other words, it is not enough for a forced win. With the correct series of moves, White is still fine.

Black has the lead in development and space. But White can fight back with a little consolidation with 18. Be3 to block Black's dark squared bishop from X-raying White's king. 

Black's mate threat of 18. ….Qh3 is repelled easily with 19. Bf1 and the game is dead EVEN.

But White is oblivious to the threats and trades off his best piece for one of Black's worst ones. There is an old chess adage "to take is a mistake." It applies here.

18. Nxc6          bxc6
19. Be5??         …….

White is completely oblivious to how strong Black's bishop pair is. 19. Nd2 had to be played to avoid defeat.

19. ......             Qh3
20. Bf1             Bxf2+!
21. Kxf2           Ng4+
22. Ke2            Qxh2+
23. Bg2            Qxg2++

Friday, October 11, 2019

Chess Move Checklist, and Kids Night a Success!

And no, your humble scribe did not draw this.
Another successful Kid's Night at the Club. Fourteen players, that included four 'less aged' people that the night is designed for.
Chess games, lessons and free chess magazines were available.
Remember, anyone is welcome any Monday to the Club, but we set aside the 2nd Monday of each month as Kid's Night. The Club makes sure that the younger chess players have an opponent or chess lessons - or both if they prefer.
Stop on by.

Now for a chess lesson for all: Chess Move Checklist

What was the reason for my opponent's last move?
What is the best way to counter my opponent's threat while still continuing my plans?
Am I playing with a plan (even if it is just to develop all my pieces) or do I have no plan at all?

Was my opponent's move a mistake? Can I take advantage of the squares he left uncovered?

If I make the move I want to make, what is my opponent's best response?
Now that I think I have a good move, is there a better one?
Is my brain and hand that move the pieces functioning together? In other words, if I change my mind on a move, can I make sure my hand doesn't go off on it's own and move the piece before I went thru my checklist again?

How am I feeling and thinking? Am I confident or cocky? Do I still care or am I demoralized or don't care?
Am I fighting as hard as I should be? Do I need to walk away from the board and re-focus?