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  1. 17 Aug '14 10:17 / 5 edits
    I have the black pieces.



    At the time this was a game I was pretty proud of, my opponent is probably the best player I have ever beaten in a serious game. It was the second round of a tournament and oput me on 2/2. On move 10 I decided to exchange the knight for two of white's defensive pawns and a pin of white's knight which would take him a move or two to untangle from. I had no other pieces to rush immediately to the attack, but hoped the time my opponent took to extricate himself from the pin would allow me to get them there. If I want to get better, then I appreciate I need to not miss things like the mating attack on move 19 but what do you lot think about my 10th move? Should I cut stuff like that out if I can't see clearly how it leads to a win? Qd3 would have mullered me on move 14 as I think my initiative would have evaporated.

    Or is this decent enough practical play at my level and maybe a little higher. Just because fritz could defend a position it doesn't mean that an opponent at my level will always (or even usually) be able to.

    I'm about a 1600 player at the moment.
  2. 17 Aug '14 10:21 / 1 edit
    PGN Corrected
  3. Subscriber sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    17 Aug '14 14:14 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by PacMan
    PGN Corrected
    I would think it depends on the exact position for sac's like that to prove ok. Your BxN got your piece back since kXB is mate. So in the positions made by white it worked fine. By move 19 white was lost in any event since you now are able to kill his best piece with you a piece up by that time.

    What was the time control for this tournie? What was the opponent's rating?
  4. 17 Aug '14 14:30 / 1 edit
    "Should I cut out sacrifices like this?"

    No. You gambled and won.

    " Should I cut stuff like that out if I can't see clearly how it leads to a win?"
    If you cannot see the finish but think it's worth a go then do it.

    The analysis room is full of sob stories about players not missing (they see it)
    but not playing a sacrifice because it's beyond them to analyse it down
    to an exact checkmate.
    When they look at it after the game and see it would have worked they
    wander around showing everyone how they could have won.
    Meanwhile the scoreboard (where it matters) records they lost.

    In time you will figure out by experience when it's interesting and
    difficult to defend and when it is plainly unsound.

    They say you can learn from the mistakes of others......
    That sounds like good advice but it's a load of bollocks!
    You only learn from your own mistakes or incorrect decisions.

    The piece sac was perfectly understandable and it did need a mistake
    from your opponent. You set him problems to solve....he failed.

    What is more serious is that you never recognised the mating pattern here.



    to here...


    Which can hardly be prevented.

    If you are going to hit the sac-sac trail then it is very important
    (and you correctly hinted that you should have seen it)
    that you do not let chances like this slip by.

    There will be games when such moves (19...Kf7) is the only move that wins.
    Miss these and you will end up wandering around the analysis room showing
    everyone you missed brillaincy (meanwhile the scoreboard records.....)
  5. 17 Aug '14 17:21
    Originally posted by sonhouse


    What was the time control for this tournie? What was the opponent's rating?
    It was long time controls. My opponents rating was about 1700.
  6. 17 Aug '14 17:36


    Thanks for the advice guys, anymore opinions welcome too.

    The main reason I missed the mating pattern I think is because I saw the one above and fixated on that, and couldn't see a way to remove the knight to set it up. So then I looked at Q on g2 and saw that the only way to defend it for white was to exchange queens. Given that it left me a piece and a pawn up with queens off I decided that was enough. It was the fact that the knight was pinned which I really overlooked I guess.

    And to the two of you - Had I lost, would your opinion of the sacrifice be different? Or would you still think it was on balance worth it given the amount of problems it offered for a 1700 player to solve? I can't see that there was really a decent alternative, 10 Bc8 felt awful so I guess if you tell me I shouldn't have played the sacrifice then I have to NOT play 9 . ....Bf5 here




  7. Standard member ChessPraxis
    Cowboy From Hell
    17 Aug '14 19:26
    "A good sacrifice is one that is not necessarily sound but leaves your opponent dazed and confused." --Rudolf Spielmann

    I like the sac, you get immediate near compensation material wise, and the initiative along with an exposed enemy king.
  8. 17 Aug '14 21:37
    HI Pac Man,

    "And to the two of you - Had I lost, would your opinion of the sacrifice be different?"

    My opinion is that it was a gamble that you decided to take.

    If you had lost I would have said remember the saving moves that
    made your combo unsound. Sometimes this type of sac is on - sometimes not.

    I think you played this knowing it looked interesting and could not see
    a refutation. OK go for it. Good.

    It's when you can see a refutation and still play it hoping he won't see it
    is when you are in trouble.


    Winning by tricks sacs depending on blunders is a bad habit that I am 100% guilty of.
    It is a hard habit to shake. You do score incredible wins...
    ...provided you are sharp enough to spot the mates and the mating patterns.

    You start to think that all players won't see the refutation (trust me on this.).

    You will end up with a few grim losses and realise......eventually....
    That you are not as clever as you think you are and the 'sac-hope and sac some more'
    style soon hits a ceiling you keep bouncing your head off.

    (re-reading this it may have been better for your future development had you lost!)
  9. Subscriber sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    17 Aug '14 23:38
    Originally posted by PacMan
    It was long time controls. My opponents rating was about 1700.
    Where was this tournament?
  10. 18 Aug '14 09:34 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    Where was this tournament?
    Aberystwyth, Wales.

    Why do you ask?
  11. 18 Aug '14 10:01
    don't sacrifice if you don't know the outcome in my opinion, especially if you feel your position is better in the game. I know it's not always easy to tell, I don't know, I wouldn't make it a habit unless your a tactical master.
  12. 18 Aug '14 10:05
    you'll know during the course of the game when it feels right or when it really makes sense, you will get a feel. I don't know if taking a gamble during an even game is right, just have to weigh the circumstances.
  13. 18 Aug '14 10:22
    I think the last few comments probably hit the nail on the head. Here I did it because I couldn't see either a refutation or a win, and I felt that given the position I had no other move, I would have been slipping into a worse position by retreating the bishop.
  14. 20 Aug '14 02:37 / 1 edit
    Thanks PacMan for a good thread.

    I have a folder called 'Piece for Two Pawns' which is what you are describing here. If I get 2 pawns for a piece and break up the wall in front of the castled enemy King, then I am ready to play with that imbalance.

    Three factors:

    1 I find it more effective to play this on the castled K-side, probably because of the danger to the enemy King.

    2 This way of play gives you 2 options: direct attack or play for an endgame where the 2 pawns advance (one of them passed).

    3 And the question (help us GP!), do you want to have the Bishop or the Knight left on the board? I read somewhere that the Q+N match up better in the attack because Q+B duplicate each other's powers?
  15. 20 Aug '14 12:45
    Again the position on the board rules all decisions.

    In general the Queen & Knight make wonderful attacking partners.