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Investigating an Unclear Tactic
Photo courtesy of Chess.com.

Investigating an Unclear Tactic

Jun 18, 2017, 1:25 PM 1

Hi everyone,

    This post is very much in the tradition of the post I did about a month ago about the minor piece ending. Although these more analytical, investigative posts are on the heavier side, you can expect to see them occasionally on this blog, as with absolutely anything to do with chess. Well, except for chess history. I'm not hugely into that. meh.png

    This position is from a game I posted on this blog just a week ago, where I had missed a sequence which won a pawn immediately. However, at the end of the line there was an alternative that could be better in the form of a rook sacrifice which links Black's play on both sides of the board in dramatic fashion.

    This rook sacrifice makes a lot of sense. Black will pick up a piece and both kingside pawns, and White's King becomes seriously exposed. But is it really better than 41... Qxb2? Here's the main line of the Rook sacrifice.

41... Rxf2: the main line

 Now, I hope you're not all snoring by now (is there any wonder my blog isn't popular? grin.png), but if you are, it's probably because for me it's all about chess for its own sake, and at least to me, the fact that there's something interesting and unclear here is worth analyzing in and of itself.


Chesster! Y u no shut up? grin.png

Anyway, here's the 45. Bc8 line:

Okay. That in itself shuts the whole idea of 41... Rxf2 down. But there might be something even better, and that brings us to our final diagram, where White plays the prophylactic 45. Qa4!?

    So it turns out that 41... Rxf2 is probably just dead equal, and is both objectively and practically worse than just taking the pawn.

    Whatever. I'll see you next time with a Daily game where although I lost a won game because I forgot what Black's last move was, the variations I saw when analyzing that game turned me on to the White side of the Exchange Grunfeld.

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