Monday, June 13, 2016

Sicilian Defence Mature Sacrifice

Why do players sacrifice material? A chess sacrifice increases the drama in a game. It adds to the beauty. It provides comedy. A chess sacrifice is a wonderful move. I love to sacrifice and I am past age 60! Emanuel Lasker famously said, “The delight in gambits is a sign of chess youth... we with maturing experience leave off gambit playing…”

My wife asked me when I was going to write my book, “Maturity and How I Attained It”. She said it would be a work of fiction. She is only half joking. We met in 1976, and she knows me very well. Immaturity in chess makes me want to sacrifice when I should be serious and hold on to my material. I don’t want to throw my material away for no reason. I just want to have fun when I win. I find sacrifices even when I do not play gambits

To complicate matters, a lot of my games were played in online blitz games or in unrated club games. I could and did play boldly. The risks in such contests were minor. I won this game in the Rauzer Sicilian Defence vs Allen Taylor. My focus was on the center with rooks on d1 and e1. On move 15 I sacrificed a knight. On move 17 White can regain the piece. Instead I got too cute. I sacrificed the Exchange. I took a bishop with the rook.

I should just grab the other bishop with a pawn. Waiting a move to play 18.dxc6 gave Black a chance for a better defense. In this club game Black missed it. I was able to pull off a pretty finish. When Black resigned, he was up the Exchange. But we were headed to a pawn endgame where only I would have a bishop.

Sawyer - Taylor, Williamsport PA 1995 begins 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Bg5 e6 7.Qd2 Be7 8.0-0-0 a6 9.f3 [9.Bxf6=] 9...Rb8 10.Be2 Bd7 11.Rhe1 b5 12.Nxc6 Bxc6 13.Bf1!? [13.Bxf6!=] 13...b4 [13...0-0 14.Bf4=] 14.Bxf6 Bxf6 15.Nd5 exd5 [15...Bxd5 16.exd5 e5=] 16.exd5+ Be7 17.Rxe7+!? [White gets too cute. Better is 17.dxc6+- ] 17...Kxe7 18.dxc6 Re8 [18...Qc7 19.Bc4+/=] 19.Bxa6 Kf8 20.Qxd6+ Qxd6 21.Rxd6 Re6 22.Rxe6 fxe6 23.c7 1-0

You may also like: King Pawn (1.e4 e5) and Queen Pawn (1.d4 d5)
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