Giving valuable insights into a game.

Prateek2709

I played (rather say lost) a game against a rather high rated opponent. Can anyone tell me where did I go wrong, or what alternate move could have turned the game in my favour?

I have attached the URL of the game. Please help me out, would be great!

https://www.chess.com/live/game/5287374534

Thanks in advance!

Dzindo07

This is the game.

Where do I begin... On the 1st and 2nd move you moved a pawn twice. First d6 and then d5. You wasted a complete move and it's only the second move. 4. ... Qe6+ is a pointless check and you are blocking your e pawn. 8. ... Nd6?? this is the third time you are moving this knight and you are not achieving anything, more moves being wasted. 15. ... f6 is a mistake. It's an odd move. Yes you want to get rid of the white knight, but f6 weakens your kingside, assuming you also plan to castle there, if you wanted to get rid of that knight so badly h6 would have been better. But the move here would be g6. You are late in development, white has already developed, castled and connected his rooks, with g6 you fianchetto your bishop at g7 and castle. 18. Nf3 your opponent made a mistake, Nxh7 leads to a nasty line for black. From here you played well for a while, a5 was good a nice spot. 22. Bb4? is a mistake and this is the critical moment in the game. 22. Bc5 is by the looks of it the best move in this position, the position seems equal you could hold this. The threat here is a fork at Bxf2, but it also activates the bishop, leaves the king free to castle and frees up e7 for the knight to keep an eye on c6. The next couple of moves are pretty much forced. 27. ... Re8 I assume you didn't notice the bishop and queen already guard e6 pawn sufficiently, Qd6 to watch the b pawn. 34. ... g6?? the final nail in the coffin. Queen to b4 attacks both the rook and knight, white has to play Nc3 and while white is still better this is somewhat manageable. But after the dreadful g6 white just traded as much as he could and used his pawn majority to get a queen out after that you lost. The last 20 or so moves were just a formality.

Revise opening principles again. Don't move the same piece twice, develop minor pieces, don't move the queen out too early, fight for the center, castle for king safety. You managed to break every principle. Make sure to keep your pieces active and maybe practice tactics you did miss some simple stuff in there. But overall you held up nicely for such a massive rating difference. 

ArtNJ

The above post is correct, although I would focus on the last paragraph.  You are at the stage where you need to absorb the beginner principles.  At this stage, your main goals in the opening should be to develop your pieces fast and castle, not wasting time with unnecessary pawn moves or moving pieces twice without a good reason.  And yes, taking the queen out too early is often a huge time waster, where the other side can gain a lot of moves for free by chasing her around.  Your opponent may be 2000 strength, but I don't think he took the game overly seriously as he could have been much more focused in punishing your play.  

Prateek2709

Thanks to all! But just a quick question:

1) I tend to castle the king to that side whose pawns I haven't moved. Do you think this strategy is visible to a good opponent? I mean should I actually in castle every game, or do it only if the king is in jeopardy?

2) I am not very trained (just 6 months of coaching). So please tell me if this is right:

If I find the opponent to be too powerful to overtake, I simply play counter moves to every move he plays (just like in this game, where I tried to foil my opponent's plan with every move of mine, rather than creating an attacking circuit of my own). I mean should I attack and defend as and when required, or try to absorb my opponent's moves in case he is too tough.

Hope you got my doubts. Thanks!

Dzindo07
Prateek2709 wrote:

Thanks to all! But just a quick question:

1) I tend to castle the king to that side whose pawns I haven't moved. Do you think this strategy is visible to a good opponent? I mean should I actually in castle every game, or do it only if the king is in jeopardy?

2) I am not very trained (just 6 months of coaching). So please tell me if this is right:

If I find the opponent to be too powerful to overtake, I simply play counter moves to every move he plays (just like in this game, where I tried to foil my opponent's plan with every move of mine, rather than creating an attacking circuit of my own). I mean should I attack and defend as and when required, or try to absorb my opponent's moves in case he is too tough.

Hope you got my doubts. Thanks!

1. You should almost always castle, and castle to the side you judge to be safer. And as soon as you can. Of course your opponent can tell you're trying to castle, he's trying to castle too. There are some exceptions such as some extreme cases where neither side is safe or if a lot of pieces got traded of most importantly the queen. Most of the time you castle.

2. I think this is mostly preferential. In my opinion you should play the way you feel the most comfortable. If you are used to playing aggressive and it's your forte than attack even if it's a strong opponent, and vice verca. Besides you should always make threats and not get boggled down in a passive position.

Prateek2709
Dzindo07 wrote:
Prateek2709 wrote:

Thanks to all! But just a quick question:

1) I tend to castle the king to that side whose pawns I haven't moved. Do you think this strategy is visible to a good opponent? I mean should I actually in castle every game, or do it only if the king is in jeopardy?

2) I am not very trained (just 6 months of coaching). So please tell me if this is right:

If I find the opponent to be too powerful to overtake, I simply play counter moves to every move he plays (just like in this game, where I tried to foil my opponent's plan with every move of mine, rather than creating an attacking circuit of my own). I mean should I attack and defend as and when required, or try to absorb my opponent's moves in case he is too tough.

Hope you got my doubts. Thanks!

1. You should almost always castle, and castle to the side you judge to be safer. And as soon as you can. Of course your opponent can tell you're trying to castle, he's trying to castle too. There are some exceptions such as some extreme cases where neither side is safe or if a lot of pieces got traded of most importantly the queen. Most of the time you castle.

2. I think this is mostly preferential. In my opinion you should play the way you feel the most comfortable. If you are used to playing aggressive and it's your forte than attack even if it's a strong opponent, and vice verca. Besides you should always make threats and not get boggled down in a passive position.

Thanks for your inputshappy.png

 

Dsmith42

Against 1. e4, learn a defensive system and stick to it.  1. ..d6 is OK (it's the Pirc Defense), but it's a bit tricky to master.  After 2. d4 Nf6 is mandatory.  As @Dzindo07 noted, you wasted tempo in the opening by moving the d-pawn twice.

In the opening, you must always mind the tempo cost of moving pieces multiple times, and exchanging pieces which have moved a number of times for opposing pieces that have moved once (or not at all).

A small comment on castling - it's important to get the minor pieces developed to give yourself the ability to castle quickly, but castling itself should wait until you can clearly tell that one side is better.  Queenside castling is not often about king safety, it's usually an attacking move, as the d-file rook after O-O-O is directly attacking/supporting the center on a file which is usually open/semi-open, while the f-file rook after O-O is still on a flank file which is usually closed.

@Dzindo07 is correct to discourage passivity - the last thing you want to do is cede the initiative to an otherwise stronger player.

One last point - minor pieces are stronger when posted near the center.  More simply, a minor piece with greater mobility is substantially stronger than one with less mobility.  Take the example of his knight v. your bishop in the endgame.  The c8 knight was hemmed in by pawns on g7 and e6 for much of this game.

Prateek2709

I get it 👍