Modern Chess 2

The second part of the IQP survey features two beautiful games annotated again by the prominent player and coach Viktor Gavrikov for "Modern Chess."
A game that I liked (ChessBase 13)

[Event "Pecs-A"]
[Site "Pecs"]
[Date "1976.09.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Honfi, Karoly"]
[Black "Dorfman, Josif D"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "D42"]
[WhiteElo "2460"]
[BlackElo "2405"]
[Annotator "GM Viktor Gavrikov"]
[PlyCount "63"]
[EventDate "1976.09.20"]
[EventRounds "11"]
[EventCountry "HUN"]
[EventCategory "6"]

{Dear readers, In the present issue of "Modern Chess", we continue to examine
the positions with "isolani". The first artcile of the course was designed to
deal with three of the most important attacking possibilities in such
positions - rook transfer to the kingside, knight sacrifice on "f7" square and
pushing of the isolated pawn. In this article, I am going to bring to your
attention another three fundamental attacking ideas for the side which plays
with an isolated queen's pawn - transition into symmetrical pawn structure,
advance of the "f" pawn and advance of the "h" pawn. 1) Transition into
symmetrical pawn structure The transition into symmetrical pawn structure is a
topic, the importance of which is often underestimated in the chess
litterature. Such transition can arise in positions where the piece which
blockades the isolated pawn is exchanged. When we play a position with an
"isolani", the possibility of transition into symmetrical pawn structure after
an exchange on "d5" ( "d4" ) is always in the air and we should consider it in
every moment. That's why we are obliged to examine a new pawn structure, even
though it doesn't seem to have anything in common with the isolated pawn.
Under what circumstances we should give preference to the symmetrical pawn
structure? That is the question I am most often confronted to, when explaining
the present topic to my students. Despite of the fact that the answer is
rather complex, I will point out some general directions. Those of you who
have read the first article of the course know that when we play with an
isolated pawn, our long-term plan is to launch a kingside attack. According to
the basic chess principles, side attacks are successful when the situation in
the center is stable. In the same line of thoughts, the transition into
symmetrical pawn structure favours the side which is planning to attack the
opponent's king. On the other hand, in positions with symmetrical pawn
structure, our typical space advantage doesn't exist anymore. Moreover, there
are is no pressure on the "e" file. In order to use the advantages of the
symmetrical pawn structure, we shoul be ahead in the developpement and our
pieces must be more active. Only in these cases, we can organize a strong
kingside attack which compensates the fact that the space advantage is lost.
Also, it's important to mention that the transposition to symmetrical pawn
structure is generally favourable when the opponent's kingside is weakened.
The abovementioned ideas are brilliantly illustrated by the game Honfi -
Dorfman played in 1976. Let's take a look at that instructive game. The
position we are interested in arises after the moves:} 1. c4 c6 2. e4 d5 3.
exd5 cxd5 4. cxd5 Nf6 5. Nc3 Nxd5 6. Nf3 e6 7. d4 Nc6 8. Bd3 Be7 9. O-O O-O 10.
Re1 {[%csl Re5,Re6,Re7,Re8][%cal Gf1e1] Diagram [#] Diagram [#] The diagram
position is extremely popular and can arise from many opening variations. As
an example, we can point out Panov attack in Caro-Kann defence, Semi-Tarrasch
defence, Alapin variation in Sicilian defence and etc. That's why the deep
understanding of that position helps us to improve our opening repertoire.} Bf6
{The idea of Black's last move is to free the "e7" square for the knight.
Afterwards, black is planning to strengthen the control over the key "d5"
square by playing moves like b6 and Bb7 or even Bd7 - c6. In general, one of
the main problems for Black consists in finding a suitable square for the "c6"
knight. Even though Black has managed to solve the abovementionned problem,
his last move has one very imporant negative side. When there are is no knight
on "f6" square, the "h7" pawn becomes a target in many variations.} ({A
popular alternative is} 10... Nf6 {[%cal Gc6b4,Gb4d5,Gb7b6,Gc8b7] Diagram [#]
Now the kingside is well protected but the "c6" knight has no good squares.
Given the fact that Black's only constructive idea is connected with the
manoeuvre Nb4 - d5, white must play} 11. a3 {[%cal Gd3c2,Gd1d3] Diagram [#]
followed by Q-B attacking set up along the "b1 - h7"diagonal.}) 11. Be4 $1 {
Diagram [#] Very interesting move. In favourable circumstances, White is ready
to enter in a position with a symmetrical pawn structure. In the diagram
position, the positional threat is 12.Qd3 with the idea to provoke weaknesses
on the kingside. As we already know, the weakened kingside is a sign that a
possible transition into a symmetrical pawn structure could be advantageous.}
Nce7 12. a3 Bd7 {Diagram [#] Diagram [#] A doubtful move. Despite of Black's
intention to increase the control over the critical "d5"square by means of 13..
.Bc6, white has some additional possibilities connected with an eventual
transition into a symmetrical pawn structure.} ({It was preferable to continue
with} 12... b6 {[%cal Gc8b7] Now, in any moment, Black is ready to recapture
on "d5" with a piece.}) 13. Qd3 g6 {The most typical reaction in response to
the attack against the "h7" pawn. As we have already pointed out in the first
article of our present course, Black is not advised to play the move h7-h6.
This move not only weakens the "b1 - h7" diagonal, but at the same time bishop
sacrifices on "h6" are always in the air.} 14. Bh6 Bg7 {As a rule, in such
kind of positions, the exchange of the black-squared bishops is in White's
favour. The weak dark squares on the kingside make the tranisition into
symmetrical pawn structure extremely tempting.} ({Better was} 14... Re8 {
In this position, white should probably go for the plan conected with the
advance of the "h"pawn.}) 15. Bxg7 Kxg7 {Diagram [#] Diagram [#]} 16. Bxd5 $1 {
Just in the right moment! This exchange is necessary, because everything is
ready for the change of the structure - White is ahead in development and
their pieces are more active, whereas the Black's kindside is very weak.} Nxd5
17. Nxd5 exd5 18. Qb3 Bc6 {[%csl Yc6,Gf3] Diagram [#] Diagram [#] A typical
middlegame position has arised. White can already claim a clear advantage.
Their knight dominates Black's bishop which is restricted by his own pawns. In
adition, we should mention that White's plan is extremely clear - after
putting his knight on the important "e5" square, white can proceed with
doubling his rooks along the "e" file. Later, the queen must be transferred to
the kingside with the idea to execute the typical h2-h4-h5 pawn advance. At
the same time, black is doomed to passivity.} 19. Re3 Qd6 20. Rae1 a5 21. Ne5
a4 22. Qd1 Bd7 $6 {[%csl Rg7] Diagram [#] Diagram [#] Black's idea is to
relocate the bishop, but they waste too much time.} ({Maybe it was better to
play} 22... Rfe8 {, but even in that case, white can proceed with his initial
plan.}) 23. h4 Bf5 24. h5 $1 {[%csl Yg7] Diagram [#] When White's pawn reaches
the "h5" squre, Black's king is always in potential danger. Now only the queen
must enter the attack.} Qb6 25. Qd2 {Diagram [#] The "d2" square is very
suitable for White's queen. From here, the queen not only protects "b2" and
"d4" pawns, but at the same time is ready to use the weak dark squares in
Black's camp. A possible idea is the advance g2-g4 followed by Rh3, h:g6 and
Qh6.} f6 $2 {Diagram [#] Mistake in a difficult position.} 26. Nd7 $5 {The
right idea is executed in a wrong way. Now, with a precise play, Black can
enter a Queen endgame where he is only a pawn down.} ({White should have
played the precise} 26. Ng4 $1 {[%csl Yg7,Rh6][%cal Rd2h6,Re3e7] Diagram [#]
Diagram [#] In this position, we should consider the following forced sequence:
} Bxg4 (26... g5 $2 27. Re7+ Kh8 28. Nh6 $18) (26... Rf7 $2 27. Re8 $18) 27.
Re7+ Rf7 28. Rxf7+ Kxf7 29. Qh6 Rg8 30. Qxh7+ Rg7 31. hxg6+ Kf8 32. Qh8+ Rg8
33. Re8+ Kxe8 34. Qxg8+ Kd7 35. Qf7+ Kd6 36. g7 Be6 37. Qxf6 Kc7 38. Qe7+ Kc8
39. g3 Bg8 40. Qe8+ Qd8 41. Qxa4 {Diagram [#] White has four pawns for the
bishop. His position is complitely winning.}) 26... Bxd7 27. Re7+ Rf7 28. Rxf7+
Kxf7 29. Qh6 {Diagram [#]} Rg8 $2 {This move loses on the spot.} ({Only the
tenacious} 29... Re8 30. Qxh7+ Kf8 31. Qh8+ Kf7 32. hxg6+ Kxg6 33. Rxe8 Bxe8
34. Qxe8+ Kh6 {could have left some chances of survival.}) 30. Qxh7+ Rg7 31.
hxg6+ Kf8 32. Qh8+ (32. Qh8+ Rg8 33. g7+ $1 {Diagram [#]} Kf7 34. Qh5+ Kxg7 35.
Re7+ {With a mate to follow.}) 1-0

A game that I liked (ChessBase 13)

[Event "Ostend"]
[Site "Ostend"]
[Date "1906.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Rubinstein, Akiba"]
[Black "Burn, Amos"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "D40"]
[Annotator "GM Viktor Gavrikov"]
[PlyCount "45"]
[EventDate "1906.??.??"]
[EventCountry "BEL"]

{3) The sacrifice of the knight on “f7” The sacrifice on “f7” is the
last attacking idea, which will be discussed in this issue of our magazine. Of
course, that such a blow on black’s position cannot come from nowhere -
there are certain premises. Our readers should remember that the sacrifice on
“f7” is always followed by the gain of the pawn on “e6”. In order to
achieve this scenario, two conditions need to be met: 1) The white
light-squared bishop must be put on the “a2-g8” diagonal; 2) The black
light-squared bishop must have left the “c8-h3” diagonal. To understand
the practical application of the theoretical concepts mentioned above, we
propose to your attention the match between Rubinstein - Burn, played in
Ostend, in 1906. The position that we are interested in arose after the moves:
} 1. d4 d5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. c4 e6 4. Nc3 Nbd7 5. e3 Be7 6. Bd3 O-O 7. O-O dxc4 8.
Bxc4 c5 9. Qe2 Nb6 10. Bb3 cxd4 11. exd4 Bd7 {Diagram [#] Diagram [#] With his
last move, Black clearly shows the intention to place his light-squared bishop
on the “a8-h1” diagonal. It is obvious that the bishop situated on
“c6”, will place a stable control on the “d5” square. Along with its
advantages, this maneuver hides its own risks. As already mentioned, the
abandonment of the “c8-h3” diagonal weakens the “e6” pawn, which is
under attack by the white bishop on “b3”. This is why Black has to be
extremely careful.} 12. Re1 $1 {[%cal Ge1e8] A great idea of Akiba Rubinstein.
Some of the keenest readers, probably already noticed that as in previous
games, White always places the rook on “d1”. However, the polish chess
virtuoso did not play as usual. Anticipating the future vulnerability of the
“e6” pawn, he decided to the place the heavy pieces on the “e” file.}
Bc6 13. Ne5 $1 {[%csl Re6,Rf7][%cal Re5f7] Diagram [#] Now, at any move, Black
should consider the sacrifice of the knight on “f7”.} Bd5 {Black tries to
neutralize the pressure on the “a2-g8” diagonal. However, the move 13...
Bd5 gives White the opportunity to take the bishop with the knight. In this
situation, Bb3 remained without an opponent and now the sacrifice on “f7”
became even more dangerous. It was better to play 13... Nbd5.} ({The tempting
gain of the pawn} 13... Qxd4 {can be confronted with the thematic sacrifice on
“f7”.} 14. Nxf7 $1 {Diagram [#] Diagram [#]} Rxf7 15. Qxe6 Bd5 (15... Nbd5
$6 16. Be3 Qb4 17. Nxd5 Nxd5 18. Bxd5 Bxd5 19. Qxd5 $16) 16. Nxd5 Nbxd5 (16...
Nfxd5 $2 17. Be3 $18) 17. Be3 Qxb2 18. Rab1 Qa3 19. Bxd5 Nxd5 20. Qxd5 Rd8 21.
Qxb7 Qxa2 22. Qxa7 Qxa7 23. Bxa7 Bb4 24. Rxb4 Rxa7 {Diagram [#] Diagram [#]
Although this position looks to be equal, Black has to work hard in order to
get a draw.}) 14. Nxd5 Nbxd5 {Black took with the right knight. It is
necessary to notice that in this kind of position with an isolated pawn, the
removal of the “Nf6” from the kingside usually portends problems.} ({
Here is one of the variations:} 14... Nfxd5 15. Qg4 {A typical move. From the
“g4” square, the queen not only opposes the black king, but also
intensifies the pressure on the “e6” pawn. Now, is already too late for
the black knight to come back on “f6”:} Nf6 $2 16. Nxf7 $1 {[%csl Rf7,Yg8]
Diagram [#] Diagram [#]} Rxf7 (16... Nxg4 17. Nxd8 $16 {[%cal Gb3e6]}) 17. Qxe6
Nfd5 (17... Nbd5 18. Re5 $16) 18. Re5 $16) 15. Bg5 Rc8 $2 {Diagram [#] Diagram
[#] A very serious mistake, Burn completely ignores white’s tactical threats.
} ({If the white’s next move was predictable, it is more likely that Black
should have defended the pawn on “e6”, by playing} 15... Qd6) 16. Bxf6 $1 {
A known rule - if you exchange one of the interconnected knight, the other one
losses its resistance. Now, at any black’s move, White sacrifices on
“f7”.} Bxf6 {Diagram [#]} (16... Nxf6 $2 17. Nxf7 $1) (16... gxf6 $2 17.
Qg4+ Kh8 18. Nxf7+ $1 Rxf7 19. Qxe6 Rf8 20. Bxd5) 17. Nxf7 $1 {[%csl Rf7]
Diagram [#] The logical conclusion of the Rubinstein’s strategy. The
pressure on the “a2-g8” diagonal is crashing.} Rxf7 18. Qxe6 Bxd4 19. Bxd5
Bxf2+ 20. Kh1 Qf8 21. Rf1 Rc2 22. Rac1 Rxc1 23. Rxc1 {[%csl Rc8,Rf7,Rf8,Rg8]
[%cal Gc1c8,Rd5g8] Diagram [#]} 1-0

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