Sunday, December 29, 2019

LCCC Closed Until January 6th, 2020

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all the chess players out there.

Our location is closed until the school sessions resume in January. Until then, here is an interesting game to look at:

White to make move 21
Black has just played 20. …..b6 when Bd6 was a better idea. Let us take stock of the situation:
The material is even and the remaining minor piece bishops are of the same color. Opposite color bishops make for a more draw-ish game as each side has the exact same power over half the squares on the board.
But in this situation, the side with more space and the more active pieces will have the advantage.
White has active rooks and a better placed Queen. Igor3000, my laptop Grandmaster agrees by giving White a full 1 pawn advantage here.
But how to convert that to a win?

21. Rd7        Qe8
22. Rcd1 ?!   …….
Igor was not a fan of this, sighting that 22. Qd5 not only guarded the rook at d7, but still attacked the rook at a8, and now attacks the bishop at e5 and X-rays the King on g8. White's advantage slips slightly to +.8.

22.  …..         h6
23. Qg4         Qe6
24. Qxe6       fxe6
25. Re7         Rfe8
26. Rdd7       Kf8?
Black needed to break up White's battery on the seventh rank with 26. ….Rxe7 27. Rxe7, Bf6 28. Rxe6, Rc8 and a draw was still possible. Instead White is now up 2 pawns!

27. Rf7+        Kg8
28. Rxa7        Rxa7
29. Rxa7        Rd8
30. g3             b5
31. Kg2          Kh7 ?!
Black needed to trade his less effective bishop for White's with 31. …..Bd4. White up +2.2

32. Ra6          Rd6??
Black lost his nerve, which is understandable when you consider how bad his situation was. White is +5.

33. Rxd6        Bxd6
34. a4             bax4
35. bxa4         Bc7
36. Bd2          Black resigns
Black knows he cannot simultaneous guard his isolated e-pawn and watch White's a-passed pawn.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Kids Night 120919 Was a Great Night of Chess!

Chess is always fun......but it makes winter evenings much better!
There was another good crowd at the chess club this Monday for Kid's Night.
But, so far this fall/winter - the crowds have always been good.

We had 17 players this night and we have been averaging 13 players! So if you are looking for some friendly games of chess …..or even a chess lesson, LCCC is the place to be.'

We have only one more week left in 2019 and that is next Monday night. We will re-open on January 6th. 
We will have another Kid's Night on Monday January 13th.

Then we will have the first round of the LCCC Club Championship on January 20. This tournament will run every other week - skipping any Kid's Night that might come up.
The number of rounds will be 3 to 5 rounds depending on the number of entries. Stay tuned for details as the date gets closer.

Now for a very good chess lesson by International Master,  Larry D. Evans;

The correct plan for Black in the following position is to attack White on the king-side as soon as possible.
Black to move!

Why you may ask? Black has several reasons to justify this course of action:
  • > Black has a lead in development. But if not used quickly before White catches up - this advantage will evaporate away.
  • > Black is two pawns down and a defensive strategy would be difficult to maintain on the queen-side with that big a dis-advantage.
  • > Black's Queen is on the king-side and his bishop is already pointing that way. 
  • > White's King is on the king-side
  • > White's under-developed pieces are hibernating on the queen-side. So why would you try to attack there?
Does all this mean that Black's attack is a guaranteed success? Of course not!

Picture a battle between a sheet of newspaper laying flat on the ground versus the sun. The sun is infinitely more powerful but it's rays are spread too thin by the time they reach the earth to set the paper on fire. But, use a magnifying glass to FOCUS the sun's rays just to the paper and it burns almost instantly!
It's the same in chess. The first step in mounting a successful attack against a king is to select a target square - and FOCUS your forces there!
You usually pick one close to the enemy king that your forces can gang up on.

Looking at the position you can readily see that f1 and h1 are out, and h2 is defended twice. It is even worse for f2 as it is defended three times and not under even an X-ray attack by any Black pieces.

That logically leaves g2, who is under a one-to-one attack with a bonus X-ray attack from Black's bishop on b7 (so 1.5 to 1 advantage). No more call's - we have a winner! Anytime you have opposite bishop situations, obviously picking squares matching your bishop is a wise decision.
In addition, the other Black forces can easily join in the fun!

1. .......            Rg4!
2. g3               Qc6
3. Kg2            Ne5
Black never takes his eyes off g2.

4. Qxe5           Qxf3+
5. Kh3             h5!
Threatening 6. …...Qg2 checkmate!

6. Rg1             Rh4+
7. Kxh4           Qg4 checkmate.

Any other move is just as useless.
White resigns!