Playing above my pay grade: Adventures with double isolani positions

Jul 14, 2010, 5:58 AM |

Positions that feature double isolani Pawns on d4 and d5 tend to be very sharp and extremely difficult to evaluate.  If you get into one of these, you are playing with fire, and you should expect that the game can go either way.

Let's start with a tactic that arose in a recent game.  White to move and win.
















Now, let's look at a game from 1999 between a couple of masters.  The middle game is a balance of terror, where Black finally cracked, probably in time pressure.  If you follow the game and read the annotations you will gain understanding of how to handle these sharp positions.



And now we will finish with the complete game from which the tactics puzzle above came.  Notice how the early middle game is quite similar to Gorbatov-Tober, 1999.  When I played the white side of this game, I felt like I was playing poker with chess pieces.