Crazy Inequalities: Who's Position Would you Prefer - Part 1

Crazy Inequalities: Who's Position Would you Prefer - Part 1

Apr 18, 2016, 7:45 AM |

Hello All!

This past weekend I played in a chess tournament, where I ended up placing second to a 2250 player (I was 2035). I played a very strong tournament most of the time; I outplayed another expert and an A-player, got lucky from a pretty awful middlegame against a 1700 to win, and lost to the master. However, the game against the master (we will call him Scott), went what I thought, my way for the first good part of the game. I missed a sacrifice opertunity that he had, and he ended up gaining two passed pawns and a bishop vs a rook, and I lost easily in the endgame. However, during the opening, he said he felt like his position was very nice, and in a couple moves from the below position, he thought he would be better.


Basically, we had differing opinions, so we started fighting and throwing punches at each other like Batman v. Superman...


...just kidding ;), we were cordial about it, but it was clear, we had two different approaches to the position. So generally, when you see an expert argue about a position with a master you side with the expert right?...Well I put this position into the computer, and it disagreed with... both of us... it said the position below is even.


Basically, during the post-mortem this is what we thought might be the evaluation: we came to the conclusion that it was a dynamic inequality that fit two different styles of players. Me and Scott have very different styles apparently, even though we both like stable postitional advantages.


Look at the position below and ask yourself, which position would you rather have? Do you like White's position or black's? I will post the game sometime later this week with analysis and insight into what both of us were thinking, however, let us just start with the obvious, use the following, and your intuition/gut reaction to determine whether you would rather be white or black.


I would love to hear what you think! Your comments are greatly appreciated! 


*note there is no right or wrong answers, because the position is equal, this is just opinion based!


White to Move

White's Advantages:

- better pawn structure, protected passer vs. doubled isolated a-pawns

- More distant posibility to attack on the kingside as Bb4 and possibly Bb7 will be out of play on that side.

- More space


Black's Advantages:

- Extra (passed) pawn

- Space advantage on queenside because of Bb4.

- Immediate attacking chances and chances to gain space on that side before white's afore mentioned repositioning of his queen, and bishop.



- Is Bb4 a strength or a weakness?

- Who will win in the long run on the kingside if the queenside is neglected by one or both sides?

- Which endgames (which pieces would both sides prefer to have in an endgame) are good for white and black as white has a centralized protected passed pawn, and black has two (doubled) passed a-pawns


Full game to come!
- J. Rasberry