F7 Under Fire

F7 Under Fire

Nov 15, 2017, 5:17 PM |

For the last few days I've been looking into the attacks on f7. The reason is that I lost a couple of games recently to such attacks and also missed some wins by overlooking possible f7 threats. Thus, I decided to read a few articles, flick through some books and dig online to understand this common attack and the f7 weakness better.

I'd like to share a few games that I studied myself and found interesting. I'm not going to present simple tactical mates, but rather games in which the f7 attack was thoroughly calculated and brought about some smaller or bigger advantage and finally the win.

I think this article may be useful for 1000-1400 rated players but I hope stronger players will also benefit from studying the games themselves.

I. Uncastled king

Let's look at some positions in which the black king is uncastled. The following game was played between two Polish players - Dawid Fałkowski (1930) and Łukasz Wełna (1873). I present this game first due to Dawid's brilliant attack.

One more game featuring black uncastled king - Mikhail Chigorin vs. George Hatfield Gossip from 1889:
II. Castled king 

The next two games feature castled kings. The first one was played in 1982 between Bozidar Ivanovic (Montenegro) and Vladimir Hresc (Croatia):


 And finally the classic - the game between Paul Morphy and Johann Jacob Löwenthal played in 1858.

Morphy vs. Löwenthal (1858) | Photo via Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain


III. Puzzles


IV. Conclusions

In all the games presented the attacks must have been thoroughly calculated since they didn't lead to straightforward tactical mates but gave the attacker enough advantage to win the game in the long run. I think in most cases the attacks surprised opponents who didn't calculate deeply enough or just missed the threat. All in all, the f7 attacks must be well prepared beforehand and perfectly calculated to succeed.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed studying the games and solving the puzzles.