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Endgame Techniques: Shouldering. Part 1

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In this article I would like to show you “shouldering,” an endgame strategy that in my opinion is not given enough attention in specialized books. Most books covering the endgame are full of matters concerning “zugzwang,” “opposition,” etc., leaving this topic, which is no less important, to always take a back seat. In the endgames, something quite peculiar happens between both kings. They are the only pieces that cannot directly threaten or capture each other. This nuance becomes important in Continue reading

Corner pawn crushing the fianchetto structure (Part III)

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In the final part of this article series, I would like to show some examples when the corner pawn attack is used in the endgames and may have a decisive impact on the result of the game. In the endgames, the corner pawn advance can hardly have the same direct attacking purposes against the rival’s king, but it may be used as a positional/strategic resource. Smyslov – Karlsen, 1982 After the first look at the position, it’s not so clear Continue reading

Mastering the Opening Series – Repertoire for Black 2

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An interesting idea from a common opening position! In the video “Mastering the Opening Series – Repertoire for Black 2″ by GM Roman Dzindzichashvili, we see an opening for Black that Roman has studied for over one hundred hours. This opening begins with the moves 1.d4 g6 2 c4 Bg7 3.Nc3 c5. This center-attacking opening comes with has many interesting ideas and is a good choice for anyone interested in mixing things up. Throughout the video, Roman explains how this Continue reading

Corner pawn crushing the fianchetto structure (Part II)

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Corner pawn attack

As we saw in the first part of the article, the corner pawn attack against the fianchetto structure is a very typical idea when playing with opposite side castles. However, it may also be used in other types of middle game positions. In the position shown to the right, White has an interesting exchange sacrifice idea: 1.Rxd6!? exd6 2.Qxf6 Rd7 and there is more than just compensation for the exchange. The white bishop clearly dominates on the board. However, White Continue reading

Corner pawn crushing the fianchetto structure (Part I)

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pawn crushing fianchetto

Many players (including myself) like the fianchetto setup. It gives wide possibilities to the bishop on the long diagonals. Furthermore, when the castle is made on the fianchetto’s side, king feels more protected. However, there are spots even on the Sun. For example, if a fianchettoed bishop is exchanged, a complex of weak squares will appear around the fianchetto pawn structure. It is a very logical and popular idea to expose the fianchetto setup’s weakness, but one of the most Continue reading

How to Play When Behind in Material: Part 2

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Pawn is the best

In the previous article, we talked about the first way to play when behind in material. That way involved taking advantage of whatever benefits and possibilities your position offers you. It involved a lot of self-confidence and positive thinking in order to figure out what advantages, however small, you have in a situation. The second way of playing when behind in material that we’re going to talk about, is to cause as many problems and create as many threats against Continue reading

How to Play When Behind in Material: Part 1

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Chess explosion

When you’re behind in material with not much to show for it, the game can sometimes seem impossible to win. “He’s up two pawns! I can’t win this position,” could easily be something that crosses your mind, and can be a bit hard to cope with during a game. However, some important information about how to play when you’re behind in material will definitely help you out. There are two specific ways that you can play when behind in material Continue reading