The 6 Elements of Chess pt8

The 6 Elements of Chess pt8

| 9 | Strategy

The 6 Elements of Chess Part 8

Exploiting a Time Advantage Part 2

by NM Steve Colding

The  6 Elements of Chess

The  6 Elements of Chess Part 2

The 6 Elements of Chess Part 3

The 6 Elements of Chess Part 4

The 6 Elements of Chess Part 5

The 6 Elements of Chess Part 6

the 6 Elements of Chess Part 7

     We return to the game Browne-Quinteros Hoogovens 1974:


     Black taken a Pawn but it was not cost free. It cost him 2 tempos (1 tempo to attack the Pawn and one to take it) and it will probably cost him one tempo more because the Queen will be exposed to attack once again. Remember, traditionally it is thought that 3 tempos equals one Pawn, so White has at least full value for the Pawn. White also has out 2 pieces out compared with Black's one. So white is definately ahead in time.

     Morphy has shown us how to deal with time, if you look at his games you see it happen over that when you are ahead in time, when you have more pieces out, you open the position up. So in the above diagram how would you open the position up? Think about it for a minute.

     You should of play 7.d4!. When you open the position, your pieces become more powerful because they have more scope or freedom of movement. Therefore if you have more pieces out then you have more pieces that have more possibilities.

     Black replied 7...cxd4?. Black's is really having a bad day. Now if your ahead in development you want the position open then if your behind in development you should seek to close the position.Now don't get me wrong, I think Black still would have a miserable position but recognising the danger he is in would help greatly to his being able to defend. He should play maybe 7...b6 or maybe 7...Qc6 and hope to try to keep the position closed. 7...cxd4 just falls right into White's plans.

     White's next move is 8.Re1! which attacks the Queen. It is also a critical move because Black's King is uncastled. Whenever your opponent is uncastled there are usually 2 ways to attack, one is the weak f2 or f7 square and the second is along the open e file. Black moves 8...Qc6 and White plays 9.Nd4 attacking the Queen again. Leaving us with the position in the following diagram:

      So here we can assess the position White has actually gained 4 moves for the Pawn because in addition to attacking and taking the Pawn he has had his Queen attacked twice.  If we use the old time formula for tempos vs Pawns White is ahead 1/3 of a Pawn. This mind you is maybe a superficial way of approaching it but it can be a useful guide. Black should really try to avoid confrontation as much as possible and try to develop post haste. I would have tried 9...Qd7. GM Quinterous was in a materialistic frame of mind however and played the losing move 9...Qxc4?.

    This is just too much. The game is only 9 moves old yet out of those 9 moves Black has used 6 moves for only 1 piece,the Queen. In the heat of battle one can lose one's objectivity and I have no doubt that that is what has happened. Black is two Pawns up but the cost is too high. If Black had even one other piece out he may have had a chance of survival but of pieces out other than the Queen he has none. It is sad for Quinteros but great for us because we will learn a very valuable lesson. White plays 10.Na3!

     White develops and attacks the Queen. Rule : Good development beats bad development and bad development beats no development! So now White gains another tempo the Queen must move and baby makes two tempos. Black plays 10...Qc8.

     White plays 11.Bf4 attacking the d6 Pawn. Black protect with 11..Qd7 and White threatens a Rook with 12.N/a3-b5. The threat is Nxd6+ followed by the fork of the Rook. So White has gained 2 more tempos from Black's previous weak play.White has gained 8 moves for a 2 Pawn investment. Now lets as ourselves what part of the game is White in? Definitely the middle-game and Black is still in the opening. Blacks Pawn thievery has lead to him missing a whole phase of the game and this cannot be good. Black here blew his last chance for some semblance of a playable game. He should play 12...e6 but when faced with his opponent's pieces encroaching o his position what does he do? Does he try to become defensive like a hedgehog, no he attacks like a tiger, albeit one without teeth or claws! The move he plays is 12...e5? This move falls into White's plan and Browne now unleashes a deep combination which ends the game. We will give the complete game below but let's summarize how we should exploit an advantage in time.

  1. Keep developing, especially if we can do it with an attack
  2. 3 tempos are worth a Pawn
  3. Open up the position so our pieces are more powerful
  4. If you are down in time you keep the position closed.
  5. Good development is better than bad development and bad development is better than no development.
  6. Don't be greedy!


     Next Article:Force


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