Chess - The Scotsman 18/08/12
God willing, two years from now, I may be able to rejoin Scotland’s Olympiad team.
I’m already training with that hope in mind, as the projected dates for the start of August 2014 are unlikely to clash with my teaching commitments in the way this year’s dates do. I would have loved to be going with our team to the forthcoming Olympiad in Istanbul, but I will certainly be rooting for all our players, and will be following their progress with great interest from home.
Before the start of my current summer school holiday, the director of the school warmly encouraged all members of staff to allow themselves plenty of time to do 3 Rs: rest, reflect and rejuvenate. That simple but good message made a deep impression and, as part of my putting it into practice, I’m feeling relaxed and refreshed from reading and contemplating GM Vladimir Tukmakov’s wonderful book, Profession: Chessplayer, Grandmaster at Work. This gem of a work, which is available via www.newinchess.com, is honestly so good that one cannot help being deeply moved and changed for the better by it. It’s a truly fascinating life story together with a superb collection of instructive, annotated games, all related with exceptional openness.
I was totally spoilt for choice over which game to feature today, and finally I picked the last one from the book: a miniature from the 2001 Slovenian League where Tukmakov’s opponent was super-GM Alexander Beliavsky. My notes are a modified and much-abbreviated version of Tukmakov’s full annotations.
White: A Beliavsky; Black: V Tukmakov. Opening: Slav Defence
1 d4 d5 2 c4 c6 3 Nf3 Nf6 4 Nc3 dxc4 5 a4 Bf5 6 Ne5 Nbd7 7 Nxc4 Nb6 8 Ne5 a5 9 f3 Tukmakov points out that other commonly played alternatives include 9 g3, 9 e3 and 9 Bg5. 9…Nfd7 10 Nxd7 Nxd7 11 e4 Bg6 12 d5 This is intended to discourage …e5 by Black, but Tukmakov now reacts very energetically by still playing …e5 anyway! 12…e5! 13 dxe6e.p. fxe6 14 Bc4 Qb6! The ‘!’ is awarded for Black’s courageous fighting spirit and for not being afraid to sacrifice a pawn in return for fast, active piece development. It might have been wise for White to now decline the offered hot pawn… 15 Bxe6?! Ne5 Threatening …Rd8 followed by a nasty knight check on d3. 16 Qe2 Rd8 17 Be3 Bc5 18 Bxc5 Qxc5 19 Ba2? 19 Rd1 was imperative, though the accurate sequence 19…Rxd1+! 20 Nxd1 (20 Kxd1 Qd6+) 20…Ke7, intending 21 Ba2 Rd8 22 Nc3 Nd3+ 23 Kf1 Qg5, highlights White’s continuing problems. 19…Rd3! 20 Kf1 Tukmakov explains that after 20 Nd1 Rf8 21 Rf1 Bh5! there will be no defence to a sacrifice on f3. 20…Rf8 21 Nd1 Bh5! 22 White resigned, again helplessly facing an imminent sacrifice on f3.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Tuesday 21 May 2013
Temperature: 7 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 13 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 3 C to 12 C
Wind Speed: 23 mph
Wind direction: West