Open Files and Open Ranks?

Open Files and Open Ranks?

NM CoachJKane
Nov 13, 2015, 8:31 PM |

Hi Chess Friends,

There's a lot of talk in chess about the importance of controlling an open file in chess, but much less about what it's good for. I've noticed that while controlling a file is usually helpful, it's easy to overlook how that actually can lead to a win. I've found that the winning plan frequently involves turning a battery on an open file into a battery on along a rank, frequently, the 7th or 2nd rank. Often, the process of switching directions is easy to overlook. In the position below, Anand missed Carlsen's quick win. Can you find it?









That mistake is far from the only miss in World Championship play. In 2006 both Topolav and Kramnik missed white's winning tactic, and black won the game. Can you find the win for white?







On a much lower level, grabbing and open file and using it to attack along the 8th rank, helped me to win a tournament a few years ago. See if you can find the rest of the game.

Hope these examples gave you something to think about. Good luck in your games.