Mamedyarov-Nakamura: Tactical considerations overpowering strategic factors.

Apr 29, 2014, 12:00 AM 8,117 Reads 9 Comments Middlegame

I find the position above in yesterday's Mamedyarov-Nakamura game very interesting. I have started writing  Everyman's Move by Move books for intermediate players (and above...hopefully) and one major component of the job is to explain plainly in text how key factors determine the assessment of the positions.

Now in this position, White has:
1) The bishop pair
2) A queenside majority
3) The safer king (Kb1 vs Kf7)
4) The better pawn structure (Black is saddled with double g-pawns).
Sounds great eh?
However, Black has tactical factors in his favour here, for example:
1) The ability to open up the queenside files with ...b6 to get at the white king.
2) The speed in which the rooks can get into play (the king rook is already activated and the queen rook can be mobilised quickly after ...b6.
3) The inability of the bishop pair to help out in defence.
4) The potential danger to the white king in terms of  open queenside files after ...b6.

It is pretty interesting (to me at least)  to see White's position collapse in a  few moves though Mamedyarov did pull off a spectacular exchange  sacrifice to mess things up.

Cheers,Junior Tay

Author of The Benko Gambit: Move by Move, (Everyman 2014).


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