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Strategic Play – An interesting perspective

Nikos made me aware that there was a double training session from the St Luis chess club available on youtube, which would no doubt be of interest, as it presents Strategic Play in a nice way. For those at all interested in my book, I can warmly recommend it.

There was one curious thing. At the end of the first video (find the second video in the side, or click here), where he gives this position from Chapter 2.

Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son – John Paul Gomez, Ho Chi Min City 2011

1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. e3 Bg4 5. h3 Bxf3 6. Qxf3 e6 7. Nc3 Nbd7 8. Bd3 Bd6 9. O-O O-O 10. e4 dxc4 11. Bxc4 e5 12. d5 Nb6 13. Bb3 cxd5 14. exd5 h6 15.Be3 a6 16. Rac1 Nbd7 17. Bc2 Qe7 18. Rfd1 Rae8 19. Qg3 Nh5 20. Qf3 Nhf6 21. h4 b5 22. Qh3 Nc5

[fen size=”small”]4rrk1/4qpp1/p2b1n1p/1pnPp3/7P/2N1B2Q/PPB2PP1/2RR2K1 w – – 0 23[/fen]

At this point he only gives the option played in the game, which is not too hard to see and quite interesting. It is in the last few minutes of the video. I will leave the end of the game in the comments and provide the correct move on Monday (or you can find it in the book on page 133). There is nothing too complicated going on here, but it is by no means easy either!

  1. Jacob Aagaard
    October 25th, 2013 at 17:15 | #1

    23. Bxc5 Bxc5 24. d6 Qd8 25. d7 Re6 26. Bf5 Rd6 27. Rxd6 Bxd6 28. Ne4 Nxe4 29. Bxe4 g6 30. Rc6 Bc7 31. h5 1-0

    But as said, this is not the best line for White.

  2. Seth
    October 26th, 2013 at 04:22 | #2

    After ten seconds I want to say 23.g4 intending g5.

    October 26th, 2013 at 11:05 | #3

    ### schedule ###

    So in November I can buy only Playing the French? I’m calculating what and when to order, so can you please tell me if I should wait cause I want also GM Preparation Endgame play, Mating the castled king and GM Rep French vol2 Winawer?

    Please tell me if they will be available in November or early December!

  4. JB
    October 27th, 2013 at 09:28 | #4

    Nice videos and very good of the St Louis Chess Club to put them up publicly for free. Your GP series remains on my to-buy list after watching these videos and the warm recommendations but am only half-way through the Yusupov series, half way through the QC puzzle book and still have Hort and Hort’s ‘find the best move’ and Dvoretsky’s ‘endgame manual’ sitting unread on my shelves so would be very surprised to start before 2015. Now let me have a think about trying to find a move that’s even better than Bxc5….

  5. October 27th, 2013 at 16:13 | #5

    Not having finished other books doesn’t seem to stop the rest of us from buying QC books. πŸ™‚

  6. Paul BrΓΈndal
    October 28th, 2013 at 10:23 | #6

    @John Hartmann
    I’m currently reading Strategic Play (and have subsequently bought loads of other QC books). It is really a good book; just finished the chapter on pieces and the exercises there. Gosh, they are tough. However, you learn so much from them because even if you have a wrong answer to an exercise, the solutions are beautifully explained and make you want to think outside the box, I feel! On my train trip home, the exercises in Prophylaxis are the next target for me.

  7. Andre
    October 28th, 2013 at 13:33 | #7

    In this position I would also feel provoked into pushing the g-pawn up the board.

  8. Jacob Aagaard
    October 28th, 2013 at 16:36 | #8

    As promised, the strongest move is revealed here.

    The weak square is the f5-square. Because Black has played …h6 and given away his light squared bishop, he cannot defend it easily. Thus White has a great advantage from 23.Ne2!! with the idea Ng3-f5. Black simply collapses. Although this is “simple” it is definitely very difficult to spot!

  9. JB
    October 28th, 2013 at 16:54 | #9

    I must have looked at the board for 20mins at least and Ne2-g3-f5 never even crossed my mind.

  10. Jacob Aagaard
    October 28th, 2013 at 18:50 | #10

    Very difficult.

  11. Gilchrist is a Legend
    October 28th, 2013 at 21:45 | #11

    Based on what has been said, I would probably infer November it would be available. It is already at the printer since last week.

  12. blockade_remover
    December 11th, 2013 at 12:18 | #12

    @GM Jacob Aagaard

    I have been working trough your Strategic play book, and wanted to here your opinion about a few things I learned by using your book.

    1) Intuition is handy in order to start thinking in the right direction and avoid wasting energy on wrong paths. I would like to know your opinion on how to train on intuition. Do you advise a certain method to implement while solving exercises, or do you believe that intuition comes with exercises and experience ?

    1) On a few occasions I have initially looked in the wrong direction, and during that path (usually 3-5 moves down the line) I discover certain factors about the position which turned out to be key information to the answer.
    After experiencing this a few times, I decided for myself that whenever I uncover that kind of information I make a quick assessment of where I am, and I restart to look at the initial position. One of the effects is that my thinking process get’s very messy and unstructured.Jumping from one path to the other.
    What are your thoughts on this ?

    Example where I experienced the above:
    For private reasons, I don’t have internet at home, and my boss doesn’t appreciate finding chess books at the office, so my apologies for providing the example by heart.

    Exercise 23 from chapter 1: Korchnoi – Polugajevski.
    I went along the idea of exchanging my knight for white squared bishop with Nc5-Nxd7, whereafter I play Qg5 and I start putting pressure on blacks pawns. Then I realised that Blacks Knight on f4 holds everything together and I looked at how to drive that knight away with h3 and g4. I calculated further and further, and realized then that I’m on the wrong path because if I’m right, you would include this exercise in your calculation book and not strategy. Then I went back to initial position and directly spotted that driving the f4 knight away gives White a winning position.

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