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Some Specific Questions supported by an analyzed game

BossBlunder

I decided to learn the Queen's Gambit, as I have always played 1.e4 as white and I wanted to try out a 1.d4 opening. So I played ~200 games against Antonio-Bot using 1.d4, and played the queen's gambit when black responded correctly for it (Which is probably 85% of the time). I have analyzed every single game I played it, and I feel pretty confident for maybe the first 7 - 10 moves in the various lines. Now I am prepared to start playing it against real players, and try to actually get a deeper understanding of the opening and middle game. I will try to play it, exclusively when I have the white pieces, in 30M Live for a hundred or so games.

 

This is my first game against a person, and I got stumped a few times. I annotated the game with the engine off, then I reviewed it with the engine. Any of my comments in [brackets] were done during engine analysis.

 

I have some specific questions:

#1) How to decide when to capture or leave tension: On move 11, I was put to the decision to capture the pawn or to leave the tension. I eventually decided I had to take, because I just didn't like what may come when I don't take. It turned out to be correct, but it was just lucky.  Part of what I hated was moving my center pawn to the wing.

#2) Is there some...exercise?... I can use to get my focus where it should be when I get into a position I am not familiar with?:  I expect that my knight on c3 will be captured early in the opening (around move 8 or so). When he failed to take, I continued to wait much too long for that to happen, even to the point of trying to force it to happen (Which I did, to my own peril, actually). Antonio never failed to trade that knight, so I was in uncharted waters, and instead of focusing on finding the best move, my OCD kicked in and I missed some moves.

#3) What can I do or study to pick up on positional tactics more frequently?: On move 18, I missed the fact that I could open the a2-g8 diagonal, opening a line against his King.  I do puzzles, probably more than anyone, but this is more subtle than a "tactic", it is more... positional?

#4) How do you realize when you are studying one small area of the board so intently that you are ignoring the rest of the board? : I find that I do this when I get put under a lot of pressure by the opponent, and I focus so hard on the problem at-hand, that I ignore everything else and I miss obvious tactics or opponent blunders. On move 19, my opponent left a hanging piece on b7, but I was so stressed over how to save both my bishop and my knight that I completely overlooked the fact that it was hanging.

 

Hope you guys can give me some advice. Here is the game I reference:

https://www.chess.com/a/aUmUdKAv8pox

 

BharatArora23

Cannot see the game..Please copy paste pgn

BharatArora23

There is an option to down load pgn with your annotations.

BharatArora23

Sure, will see. the game. For downloading game with annotations

Go to your game, open the game.. there is an option to download symbo.l.. a pane will open up..Move the selected option to annotated one( a symbol for person). thanks,

BharatArora23

As you might be doing for the first time, so this is how you can use it..When you intend to post, there is a chess board symbol ( click on it, select load from pgn and paste)..

I am looking at your game, will post my views. Thanks

BossBlunder

@David_Mary @BharatArora23 

I finally got the darn thing to work

PerpetuallyPinned

I'll try to add a few things for you to think about first and I may go back over some of your moves in the game later.

This is actually not as easy as it seems, but here's my go at it...

Take the position after 6...O-O

You start to question your development. GMs have played this position before so it isn't bad at all. I'm not 100% on the move order, so don't hold me to it.  Your task here is to list what you consider candidate moves (with reasons to support them). You also need to evaluate the position (e.g. Material/Piece Quality/King Safety/Pawn Structure) and be able to if either side has an advantage and why.

Take your candidate moves and go through the different variations branching from them. Remember that there will be different combinations of exchanges to consider when doing this. Checks/captures/pressure/tension (in that order of importance). Once you reach quiescence (no more forcing moves), you need to evaluate and compare that to the other results...which do you prefer and why

This is why rapid isn't recommended for serious playing at a low rating. This gets easier with experience, but it takes a while and you'll probably change the process in the meantime.

So, do that and you will learn something. Now, go find games that had that position and see how higher rated players played. Ref these games in your candidate moves lists and see if there are any recurring patterns or moves you didn't consider (along with results). You can go back over with an engine, but make sure it isn't some weak online version and give it plenty of time.

Once you've done that...

Go back to move 4...Nc6 (this is the ringer). Repeat the same process for this position.

Now you can move forward in your game and look at other things.

You may want to visit ideas (basic theory) on a few QG variations. I'll suggest Chigorin (that knight on c6 with a pawn on c7), Lasker, Tartakower and Ragozin for now because some of the positions are similar to what you have here. Some of the same plans/ideas can used. This will also help with your candidate moves and sometimes move order problems.

I'll try to go over your game later. It may take me while. You're asking a lot, but the right things to ask. Surprising for 900ish rated.

PerpetuallyPinned

Do you have any reference material? Books, videos, etc?

PerpetuallyPinned

"#1) How to decide when to capture or leave tension: On move 11, I was put to the decision to capture the pawn or to leave the tension. I eventually decided I had to take, because I just didn't like what may come when I don't take. It turned out to be correct, but it was just lucky.  Part of what I hated was moving my center pawn to the wing."

You created the tension when you played c4. Tension is something you have to constantly consider because it's a possible capture by either side. Back to calculating. One thing that can help, if you know common the pawn structures (of whatever opening), you'll have an idea of some general plans for each side. Queen's Gambit can offer quite a few...IQP, hanging pawns, Slav, Carlsbad, Rival Majorities, d5 chain, etc.

Re: center pawn to wing

Maybe your dxc5 move was brought on by Bc4 & Be2? I noticed at move 10, your engine finally wants Rc1 (add that to candidate moves earlier).  I think this was the start of the major downfall in your game (even though you won).

There were several times both sides weren't making good tactical moves. In 1.d4 openings, when the tactics arise, you have to be able to capitalize or take the lessor evil if it's a bad situations. When you castled, Black had an undefended pawn on c5 and you could've traded the Knights off (forcing Black's queen to protect it).

Maybe it's not as "positional" as you think. Positional is about improving your position (even just a little) or making your opponent's a little worse. Then, you can start looking for tactics. You always need to manage immediate and potential threats though.

I'll probably stop here, until you respond.

BossBlunder
PerpetuallyPinned wrote:

Do you have any reference material? Books, videos, etc?

I have a few books, but I have mainly done all my study in Pirc ALert by Lev ALburt and Alex Chernin, lately. I needed to learn something for black against 1.e4 and that's what I decided to pick...after 8 months or so of studying it, I find that I bit off quite a chunk, but I have really learned a lot. I have no real literature for white theory, although I do have a few books on opening principles and the basics.

I also use the opening explorer to study master games. I have been going through all of Capablanca Queen's Gambit games most recently, and I have a handful of Pirc master games in my library.

BossBlunder
PerpetuallyPinned wrote:

I'll try to add a few things for you to think about first and I may go back over some of your moves in the game later.

This is actually not as easy as it seems, but here's my go at it...

..........

I'm going to have to reread this a few times, but thank you for such a comprehensive response. I have studied QGD master games, but I have nothing on QG Theory, and I relly need to find some material on that. That is a good point.

BossBlunder
PerpetuallyPinned wrote:

Re: center pawn to wing

***Maybe your dxc5 move was brought on by Bc4 & Be2?

That could be, not sure why I thought it might be a good idea to develop there, anyway...there is a line that develops the LSB to d4, but not in QGD. I hated it once I had done it. I won't make that mistake again (I'll  find another way to screw it up LOL)

PerpetuallyPinned wrote:

***I noticed at move 10, your engine finally wants Rc1 (add that to candidate moves earlier).  I think this was the start of the major downfall in your game (even though you won).

I will have to look at that closer... normally, I would expect him to trade knights on move 9, in which case I re-take with the B pawn and move my rook to the B file. So the reason I did not move my rook to the C file was because I expected the B file to be the one to open. The fact that he didn't take made that a good move, but I feel like it was all instigated by developing my LSB to c4. Had I gone with my "preperation", I wouldn't have gotten myself into this unknown territory so early.

PerpetuallyPinned wrote:

***In 1.d4 openings, when the tactics arise, you have to be able to capitalize or take the lessor evil if it's a bad situations.

This....this is going to be my mantra for a while

PerpetuallyPinned wrote:

When you castled, Black had an undefended pawn on c5 and you could've traded the Knights off (forcing Black's queen to protect it).

Yeah, I like to get my castle on early, and I was starting to feel this pressure that "things are about to get active and I still have my King in the center". I felt like I was not prepared to initiate an attack in the center just yet, and that I needed to just castle now and move forward. I was also still expecting the knight trade at that point, and so I made some bad decisions by waiting for it rather than accepting the actual state of the board. I really have to get better at that

PerpetuallyPinned wrote:

Maybe it's not as "positional" as you think. Positional is about improving your position (even just a little) or making your opponent's a little worse. Then, you can start looking for tactics. You always need to manage immediate and potential threats though.

Another thing I need to work on. Thanks for the tips, I really appreciate this!

PerpetuallyPinned

Some older games after move 6...

ECO codes indicate transpositions 

2018 and newer you can find easily

 

nguyenquanganhkhoa

Good

kartikeya_tiwari
BossBlunder wrote:

I decided to learn the Queen's Gambit, as I have always played 1.e4 as white and I wanted to try out a 1.d4 opening. So I played ~200 games against Antonio-Bot using 1.d4, and played the queen's gambit when black responded correctly for it (Which is probably 85% of the time). I have analyzed every single game I played it, and I feel pretty confident for maybe the first 7 - 10 moves in the various lines. Now I am prepared to start playing it against real players, and try to actually get a deeper understanding of the opening and middle game. I will try to play it, exclusively when I have the white pieces, in 30M Live for a hundred or so games.

 

This is my first game against a person, and I got stumped a few times. I annotated the game with the engine off, then I reviewed it with the engine. Any of my comments in [brackets] were done during engine analysis.

 

I have some specific questions:

#1) How to decide when to capture or leave tension: On move 11, I was put to the decision to capture the pawn or to leave the tension. I eventually decided I had to take, because I just didn't like what may come when I don't take. It turned out to be correct, but it was just lucky.  Part of what I hated was moving my center pawn to the wing.

#2) Is there some...exercise?... I can use to get my focus where it should be when I get into a position I am not familiar with?:  I expect that my knight on c3 will be captured early in the opening (around move 8 or so). When he failed to take, I continued to wait much too long for that to happen, even to the point of trying to force it to happen (Which I did, to my own peril, actually). Antonio never failed to trade that knight, so I was in uncharted waters, and instead of focusing on finding the best move, my OCD kicked in and I missed some moves.

#3) What can I do or study to pick up on positional tactics more frequently?: On move 18, I missed the fact that I could open the a2-g8 diagonal, opening a line against his King.  I do puzzles, probably more than anyone, but this is more subtle than a "tactic", it is more... positional?

#4) How do you realize when you are studying one small area of the board so intently that you are ignoring the rest of the board? : I find that I do this when I get put under a lot of pressure by the opponent, and I focus so hard on the problem at-hand, that I ignore everything else and I miss obvious tactics or opponent blunders. On move 19, my opponent left a hanging piece on b7, but I was so stressed over how to save both my bishop and my knight that I completely overlooked the fact that it was hanging.

 

Hope you guys can give me some advice. Here is the game I reference:

https://www.chess.com/a/aUmUdKAv8pox

 

 

I play this line a lot(well, almost exclusively this line as white lol) and I don't really like capturing the pawn with my pawn (move 7, dxc5). The reason is if he takes with the pawn his light squared bishop gets a free open door. I know engine shows dxc5 as the best move but personally i rather have that door closed for the bishop

However if u really want to play dxc5 then i suggest waiting for him to play b6(he has to play it to get his bishop out), if u take after that then his b6 move is essentially wasted(although c5 is fine too) but the main purpose behind his b6 move would be kind of dampened a bit

BossBlunder
kartikeya_tiwari wrote:
 

I play this line a lot(well, almost exclusively this line as white lol) and I don't really like capturing the pawn with my pawn (move 7, dxc5). The reason is if he takes with the pawn his light squared bishop gets a free open door. I know engine shows dxc5 as the best move but personally i rather have that door closed for the bishop

However if u really want to play dxc5 then i suggest waiting for him to play b6(he has to play it to get his bishop out), if u take after that then his b6 move is essentially wasted(although c5 is fine too) but the main purpose behind his b6 move would be kind of dampened a bit

Thank you! That's exactly the kind of ideas I need to hear!

PerpetuallyPinned

Some videos

QGD

https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLssNbVBYrGcBfDsANalbRg2L7tL5L93Gk

Chigorin Defence

https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLssNbVBYrGcCIWjqBge6SVh_mBc--29Ov

Middlegame

https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLssNbVBYrGcD2mB7JrHbpP5qyT_ncxCRj

 

AunTheKnight

Try it out in blitz!

BossBlunder

This is great