Thursday, August 11, 2016

Fawbush French Knight Flight

The famed postal chess master George E. Fawbush was always looking for way to take his opponents out of the opening book. In a French Defence, G.E.F. chose 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Be7 5.e5 Ng8. Why does Black play such a move? Usually he plays 5…Nfd7. It would appear the plan is to relocate to e7 instead of d7.

Flexibility is a great strategy in chess. After 5.e5 the d7 square is a key pass through point for half the Black army. Think about it. Black could play either knight, a bishop, a queen or a king to d7. Whatever goes there will clog up the lines for everyone else.

The problem with the undeveloping knight move is that it is a long gallop to the center from g8. This became popular for a few years. This move can only be playable in a closed position.

Sawyer (2000) - Fawbush (2200), corr APCT 1985 begins 1.d4 d5 2.e4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Be7 5.e5 Ng8!? [This takes White out of familiar territory. Black accepts a slightly inferior game with the intention of slowly rearranging his pieces in a closed position. Normal is 5...Nfd7 ] 6.Be3 b6 7.h4!? [7.Qg4 g6 8.Nf3+/-] 7...h5 8.Be2 g6 9.Nf3 Ba6 10.Qd2 Bxe2 11.Nxe2 Nc6 12.0-0 Qd7 13.a3 [13.c3 Bf8 14.Rac1 Nge7 15.Bg5+/-] 13...Na5 14.b3 Kf8 15.Bg5 Kg7 16.Be3 [16.Qf4!?+/=] 16...Qd8 17.Bg5 c5 18.Bxe7 [This seems to ease Black's game. White could simply play 18.Rfd1+/= ] 18...Nxe7 19.Qd3?! [19.Qf4] 19...c4 20.Qc3 cxb3 21.cxb3 Rc8 22.Qd3 Nf5 23.g3 Qc7 24.Rfc1 Qe7 25.b4?! [25.Ng5 Rhe8 26.Rc2 Rxc2 27.Qxc2 Qd7 28.Kg2 Rc8 29.Qd3 Qe7=] 25...Nc4 26.Nd2 b5 27.Nb3? g5 28.hxg5 Qxg5 29.f4? [This leaves a fatal weakness on g3. White should try 29.Qf3 Rh6=/+] 29...Qg4 30.Rc3 Rcg8?! [It is amazing how often this happens. One side is winning easily for a long time. Then with one move for a brief moment they give the other side a chance. The losing side misses the moment and goes on to lose like they never had a chance. Here Black would continue to win easily after 30...Nce3! 31.Qxe3 Nxe3 32.Rxe3 Rc2-+] 31.Rf1 [White can keep the material equality for a while with 31.Qf3! a6-/+ Black is better, but he is not crushing, at least not yet.] 31...Kf8 [Better is 31...Nce3! 32.Qxe3 Nxe3 33.Rxe3 h4-+ when Black has a queen for two knights.] 32.Rf3? [32.Qf3 h4 33.Qxg4 Rxg4 34.Rff3 hxg3 35.Nxg3 Nxa3-+] 32...Qh3 [32...h4!-+] 33.Kf2 h4 0-1

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