3 Instructive Quizzes
Last night, my beloved SF Mechanics took on the defending champion Dallas Destiny in US Chess League play. I'm not writing this blog in order to tout their match victory, though I was quite excited about it. Rather, it struck me that there were a few really instructive moves in this match, and I wanted to share them with you. Note, these are all in puzzle form. You can click on "Solution" if you just want to play them out, and if you want to see my comments or explanations, click on the "move list" button.
One remarkable twist in this match was that two of the [four] games ended very quickly-- before any of the games from East Coast matches that started one or more hours earlier!
In this first puzzle, black has just played Bc6... Find the best move for white.
In the next puzzle, white has just played Nb3... Find the best move for black.
There are a lot of options in this next position. I would suggest if you don't get the first move right, set yourself a new task: go to the second move, and then stop clicking forward. Try to calculate ahead and see how accurately you can imagine the coming combination, now that it's been indicated to you.
All three of these moves are highly instructive in my opinion, in that the idea behind each one is an idea which you will have the chance to use at some point if you play a good number of chess games. I think each of them has come up easily more than 10 times in my own games.
While I can't guarantee you'll learn crucial chess ideas every week from watching US Chess League play, it does have a lot of good chess, and the team element makes it quite suspenseful. Check out www.uschessleague.com to find a schedule of upcoming matches.