A Beautiful Benko

NM ih8sens
Aug 18, 2009, 11:15 AM |

Here's a fun game I played today with one of my regular opponents. 

The Benko is really an interesting line.  Black sacs a pawn for what appears to be a very tiny lead in development.  It turns out (much to the surprise of many) that the sacrifice is largely positional.  Black is looking forward to his active piece play in the endgame, at the cost of a protected passed pawn!  It seems rather insane, yet in practice it can create quite the battle of ideas. 

This game features a theoretical novelty by my young opponent Adam Cormier (runner up in the junior section of the latest Hamilton closed), a complicated exchange sac by myself, and a fascinating battle of ideas: Piece activity vs. Material.