Fight Fire with Fire

Fight Fire with Fire

GM Illingworth
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Oct 14, 2018

Hello chess friends! For today's post I have analyzed a short game from last year's PRO Chess League, from which we can learn an important concept about playing positions with a material advantage: We shouldn't assume that th...

Overcoming Difficult Opponents

Overcoming Difficult Opponents

GM Illingworth
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Oct 14, 2018

I feel a bit tired now after talking virtually nonstop for 12 hours today, but that didn't stop me from winning two blitz games tonight against an anonymous GM who only a few weeks ago was one of my most difficult opponents on the Chess.com server...

The Cat With Nine Lives

The Cat With Nine Lives

GM Illingworth
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Oct 13, 2018

For today's post, I've shared a recent blitz game I played, where I used one of my nine lives to win a game where I got outplayed up and down the board. My annotations ended up being quite brief, so I've included them in full.  Three th...

Introducing the Petrosian QID

Introducing the Petrosian QID

GM Illingworth
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Oct 12, 2018

In this post, I will introduce the Petrosian Variation of the Queen's Indian, so that almost any player can understand the basic ideas of this opening. It arises after the following moves: Why would White spend a tempo on a non-developin...

Endgame Tactics from Vidit-So

Endgame Tactics from Vidit-So

GM Illingworth
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Oct 11, 2018

In this post, I've taken some endgame positions from my analysis of the recent Speed Chess Challenge match between Wesley So and Santosh Gujrathi Vidit, where you have the opportunity to find some nice ideas  Vidit was White in each of the pu...

Don't Feed the Hippo

Don't Feed the Hippo

GM Illingworth
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Oct 10, 2018

A few months ago, I visited Adelaide Zoo and saw many beautiful and interesting animals, including the Hippopotamus. I don't think I'll ever forget Brutus the old hippo - he would spend nearly all his time in the water, lured only by the prospect ...

Solution to Yesterday's Puzzle

Solution to Yesterday's Puzzle

GM Illingworth
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Oct 9, 2018

The post I initially wrote for today ended up being quite long, so I've saved it for tomorrow, and today I'll focus on the solution to yesterday's puzzle. In case you missed that post, here is the position again, with White to play: 9.b4!,...

What's Your Chess Improvement Question?

What's Your Chess Improvement Question?

GM Illingworth
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Oct 8, 2018

As I am too jetlagged to focus on chess analysis for today, I figured I'd do a different type of blog post today - one where you, the audience, can make your contribution! Feel free to leave a question below on how you can improve as a chess pla...

3 Ways to Motivate Yourself for Chess Training

3 Ways to Motivate Yourself for Chess Training

GM Illingworth
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Oct 8, 2018

As I was flying back to Sydney, bobbing my head to Eminem's 'Revival' album, I started thinking to myself about how I could best encourage my students to do the difficult work, the 'deliberate practice' that makes one a stronger chess player. Wh...

Learning from the games of others

Learning from the games of others

GM Illingworth
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Oct 6, 2018

I've noticed that when I analyse a chess game, I tend to have a lot of questions about different moves that could have been played.  So, I have a 'brief check' of what the engine gives, play out some natural-looking 20 move variation to dra...

Learning from your Losses

Learning from your Losses

GM Illingworth
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Oct 5, 2018

Now that I have finished the Olympiad, I will share my analysis of one of my games, which contained some interesting moments before an unfortunate blunder on my part. I'm about to head off to the Closing Ceremony for the Batumi Olympiad, bu...

Winning in Walbrzych

Winning in Walbrzych

GM Illingworth
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Apr 15, 2018

For today's post, I will give you a series of puzzles to solve, and questions to answer! Question 1: Where in the world is Walbrzych? Answer: Walbrzych is a city in south-western Poland. It's also the venue for the European Senior Team C...

Mar del Plata Master - Bobby Fischer

Mar del Plata Master - Bobby Fischer

GM Illingworth
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Apr 13, 2018

As you've probably noticed by now, I like to investigate the games of the leading experts of particular chess themes. Be it Rubinstein's rook endings, Nakamura's Nimzo-Larsen, or, in the case of this post, Bobby Fischer's expert handling of the KI...

Jobava's Four Pawns Attack

Jobava's Four Pawns Attack

GM Illingworth
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Apr 13, 2018

In this post, I'll share a nice game from last decade by Jobava, where he defeats a strong GM with energetic play in the Four Pawns Attack of the King's Indian (1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f4 0-0 6.Nf3).  Because of the variation's...

Planning Puzzle

Planning Puzzle

GM Illingworth
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Apr 9, 2018

White (to move) is obviously pressing in the above position, due to Black's multiple pawn islands, but what should his plan be?  White to play. I'll share my analysis of this position 24 hours after the initial posting. In the meantime...

Converting a Material Advantage

Converting a Material Advantage

GM Illingworth
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Apr 8, 2018

This post will be for players relatively new to chess, showing how to convert a material advantage into victory. I hope you enjoyed this blog post and learned something useful to apply in your games! Keep in mind that, when you are starting ...

Opposite-Coloured Bishops and Rooks

Opposite-Coloured Bishops and Rooks

GM Illingworth
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Apr 8, 2018

In this blog post, I annotated a game from the Croatian Junior Team Championship, which featured an interesting opposite-coloured bishop endgame with rooks on the board. Such positions can be quite difficult for humans to play and for engines to u...

A Major Success at the 2018 Doeberl Cup

A Major Success at the 2018 Doeberl Cup

GM Illingworth
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Apr 3, 2018

This post is all about the 2018 Doeberl Cup, which was just played over the Easter holidays in Canberra - but my focus won't be on the Premier Division. One player has already shared an introspective of his Premier tournament. Note: You may have a...

A World Champion's Caro-Kann Counter

A World Champion's Caro-Kann Counter

GM Illingworth
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Mar 31, 2018

For today's blog post, I would like to show you how a World Chess Champion defeats the rock-solid Caro-Kann Defence. The opening concept is so easy to understand, it will be sufficient to share two game scores: Now, we can say that the ele...

Burning the Bridges in a Sveshnikov Structure

Burning the Bridges in a Sveshnikov Structure

GM Illingworth
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Mar 23, 2018

In this short post, we'll learn the dangers of the committal ...f4 break in a major line of the Sveshnikov Sicilian. Such moves signal an intent to attack the White king, shifting the play from central pressure to whose flank attack will be faster...

Fast Endgame Technique

Fast Endgame Technique

GM Illingworth
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Mar 19, 2018

What differentiates a 'good' blitz player from a 'great' blitz player? The answer to this question lies in my experience playing online blitz for over a decade ago. Back in 2007, I was rated in the 2800s on the late Internet Chess Club - which e...

How energetic is your Chess?

How energetic is your Chess?

GM Illingworth
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Jan 25, 2018

Do you want to know the key to turning a better position into a win? Essentially, converting an advantage is all about keeping control of the position.  To do that, we need to have the initiative. What is the initiativ...

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