Monday, March 28, 2016

Simple Sayles Plan vs Gruenfeld

A few good men kindly taught me valuable lessons when I was starting out in postal chess. I always focused on learning openings. Thomas Sayles demonstrated vs my Gruenfeld Defence that a simple plan is all you need to play an opening!

White began with a quiet set-up during the first five moves. Then came mass exchanges of material. By move 12, both of us had developed all four minor pieces and our queens. We had castled kingside. The position was equal. White should have played 13.Ng5!=.

I studied endings more than tactics. So sad. Tactical ability is the most important chess skill. But that was hard work. At least my endgame knowledge helped out here. I noticed right off that White's 13th move allowed me to double his e-pawns in exchange for giving him the two bishops. Black obtained a queenside pawn majority for endgame edge. He was unable to use his two bishops. Black's better pawn structure led to the win.

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Sayles - Sawyer, corr 02.12.1974 begins 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.e3 Bg7 5.b3 0-0 6.cxd5 Nxd5 7.Nxd5 Qxd5 8.Qf3 Qxf3 9.Nxf3 c5 10.Bc4 Nc6 11.Bb2 Rd8 12.0-0 Bg4 [Black has equalized.] 13.Ne5!? [Better was 13.Ng5!=] 13...Bxe5 14.dxe5 Bf5 15.Bc3 Bd3 16.Rfc1 Bxc4 17.bxc4 Rd3 18.a3 Rad8 19.Kf1 e6 20.Ke2 Kf8 21.Rc2 Ke7 22.Rac1 h5 23.h4 b6 24.f4 Ke8 25.Rd2 Rxd2+ 26.Bxd2 Rd7 27.Be1 Kd8 28.Rd1 Rxd1 29.Kxd1 Kc7 30.Ke2 a6 31.Kd3 b5 32.cxb5 axb5 33.e4 Kb6 34.Bc3? [34.Bf2 Nb8=] 34...Na5 [34...b4! 35.axb4 cxb4 36.Bd2 Kb5-+] 35.Kc2 [35.g3 Ka6=/+] 35...Nc6 [35...Nc4!-+] 36.g3 b4! 0-1

You may also like: King Pawn (1.e4 e5) and Sicilian (1.e4 c5)
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