The Perfect f2 Assault - Top 10 Of The 1990s - Nunn Vs. Nataf, 1999

The Perfect f2 Assault - Top 10 Of The 1990s - Nunn Vs. Nataf, 1999

SamCopeland
NM SamCopeland
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21

In an ordinary year, Nataf's attacking masterpiece against John Nunn would unquestionably be the best game of that year, but sometimes great games sit in great shadows

In any case, this gem is a showcase for the creative abilities of the many great players like Igor Alexander Nataf, a strong grandmaster, but not a player who ever approached elite status. While the games of the world champions and their challengers draw the most attention, there are many great players like Nataf who have produced a true immortal in their lifetime.

Top 10 Games of the 1990s

Nataf's attack in this game is a masterpiece of chess aggression. At no point in the game does Black retreat, and when asked to do so, Black sacrifices on f2, conceding a full rook for a spectacular assault on the dark squares.

I'd particularly encourage the viewer to take the time to enjoy all of the different mates, queen traps, and skewers that occur - almost all are based in White's weakness on the dark squares.

Lessons:

  • f7/f2 is the weakest square on the board.
  • Identify your opponent's weak colors and exploit them.
  • If your opponent's king can be kept uncastled, you may sacrifice even when not fully developed.

My notes are below. Be sure to check out John Nunn's own notes in "The Mammoth Book of the World's Greatest Chess Games"!

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