The Procedure of Thinking
Hello Chess Friends! It is true that Magnus Carlsen was a chess-prodigy and his game improves from day-to-day and the same can be said about many other GMs like Vishy Anand, Garry Kasparov, Vladmir Kramnik to name a few. I have no objection to this and am sure that most of you don't object this too but, have you ever wondered what makes them play at that level of perfection? I did, and not only did I ask the question, but also set out to seek the answer to this question. Then, what is the answer to the question? How did I seek it? What makes me think it is the real answer? In reality, the question has no answer, but trying to find an answer to this question has certainly increased my knowledge about the play at Grandmaster level. I think you must try to answer the question too, but I doubt how many of you will even try to answer the question after reading this . Anyway, what I am going to tell you is not going to stop GM Simon Williams from pushing h2-h4 or make GM Ben Finegold make friends with him but it is certainly going to stop you from blundering or choosing the wrong move in a game! So, lets see what I've got to tell you today.
The method which many GMs follow is simple - Find the perfect move in every position. To do this, you must have a plan and when I say must, I mean it. Even Garry Kasparov remarked in his Life imitates chess that 'A bad plan is better than having no plan.' So, how do you make a plan? To make a plan, you need to know what's going on and the imbalances of a position, and to know that, you need to evaluate a position. I'll tell you all about evaluating and planning in my next blog, but for now, lets concentrate on the brief procedure of thinking.
Well.... Yeah? What next?
Lets go to the next step of this 'Thinking Procedure'. You've evaluated the position and made a plan but now comes the real challenge - Finding the best move! Many GMs use this method called 'The Candidate Move Method'. They make a list of Candidate moves in a given position and then analyze each move in depth to decide the best move. Anyway, I am writing this blog keeping in mind that you'll be breaking your head with question like - What is a Candidate move?. The answer is simple - All moves that fit your plan in some way are Candidate moves. The way to start analyzing Candidate move is to start from the most forcing line or lines the save you tempi. Then, you slowly move to the less forcing lines and once you've analyzed all of them, you have to decide which position you are most comfortable in and the line which looks advantageous for you. Only then, will you move a piece and stop your clock. Thinking Over, Move Made!
In my future blogs, I am going to further explain all these topics in detail, but for now, concentrate on trying to answer the question I mentioned above - 'What makes GMs play at that level of perfection?'. I'm sure, that by the time you find the answer (Hmmm.... Can You? ) or give up on answering it (This sounds more....... common!), you'll have increased lots of knowledge about chess. For now, Good Bye, and of course, leave your comments.