Polgar Training Problems ... the Ones that Got Away

Polgar Training Problems ... the Ones that Got Away

Oct 14, 2016, 12:11 AM |

In early September 2016 I started a Chess Pilgrimage. I've undertaken half an hour of Polgar training positions per day (from the famous 5334+ book). As of the 13th Oct 2016 I've completed 1775 positions, making note of mistakes I've made along the way.


This blog is dedicated to those mistakes and what they have taught me. Mate in 2 sounds very simple, but composers over the year have crafted some beauties that require visualisation and care for the solver.


I thoroughly recommend this book at training material. It can't but help improve your calculation, speed and reflexes. The order of material is beautifully organised such that he deliberately reinforces the same patterns in a sequential manner.


Below are the ones I got wrong, and what they taught me. Largely I miss escape squares in my calculation, or pieces that were doing a job that (having moved) are no longer doing that job!

6th September 2016 Position 327

Illustrative of a Pin
Illustrative of Heavy Piece power along ranks and files

7th September 2016 Position 354
Illustrative of Heavy Piece power along ranks and files
Was faster seeing this next time round

8th September 2016 Position 389
Took a while to do this one, as I was distracted by trying to make Black's King move first.
I wanted him to take my Knight so I could play Qd4
Illustrative of Queen and Knight combinations

8th September 2016 Position 404
Still got this wrong the 2nd time, trying Kxa7, failing to see that my King no longer guards b5 (ghost piece)
Illustrative of Heavy piece attack and blocking squares

8th September 2016 Position 407
I got this wrong again, as I missed that the g-pawn, after promoting, no longer defends the Bishop

10th September 2016 Position 440
Got this wrong again, as I initially though the Bishop is in zugzwang, so moved the Rook to threaten mate but missed the Bishop can interpose

10th September 2016 Position 450
Correct 2nd time around

11th September 2016 Position 454
Nice variation of back rank mate combined with pin