Bishop Trap

Sep 22, 2007, 6:49 AM |

Sometimes we play half-awake and then realize that one of the pieces is trapped.  With the Bishop's frequent foray to the fifth rank, one must always decide if a retreat is better than going to the edge (rook file).  In this game (see diagram), Black decided to go to the edge to his loss.  So, beware of such traps always.  By the way, this kind of trap has a name: Noah's Ark Trap, and is usually seen in Ruy Lopez openings.

One other aspect of Black's disadvange is his unfamiliarity with the La Bourdonnais Variation of the French Defense.  I don't know if this particular variation is being used by masters in tournament play.  While the opening is important, nothing comes second to being careful, and always looking for possible traps.  You can also use such vigilance to see if you can trap your opponent.