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Blunders?!

  • GM BryanSmith
  • | 2013.01.24.
  • | 14630 megtekintés
  • | 44 hozzászólás

Regardless of strength, some players make serious blunders more often than others. While obviously most mistakes in chess are due to either a miscalculation or misevaluation of the position, when a 2500-rated player simply puts a piece en prise, you have to look for an explanation in the realm of psychology. Perhaps nerves or other mental health issues. Other players in the same class are better competitors and rarely make simple blunders. Unfortunately I definitely fall into the first category - my brain frequently short-circuits, and it seems this problem has gotten worse in the last couple of years.

I recently played in the Liberty Bell Open, and on the same day I blundered two pieces in two different games. The first game was nevertheless quite interesting, so I decided to comment it.

Before this game, I had 2.5/3 and was in good shape in the tournament. The game against FM Van Kooten (2365 Fide) began like this:

My last two moves, 9.f5 and 10.fxe6 only make sense coupled with the following "combination". Otherwise, it was better to play in a slower way with something like 9.Qe2 or 9.Be3. I had calculated what now happened when I played 9.f5, but suffered from a serious hallucination which is hard to explain.

At this point I made the insane move 11.Ne5??. After 11...fxe5 12.Qh5+, I was aware of three legal moves- 12...g6, 12...Kd8, and 12...Ke7. 12...g6 is of course met by 13.Qxe5, winning the rook. 12...Kd8 obviously loses the bishop on f8. And 12...Ke7 is met by a pretty queen sacrifice - 13.Rf7+ Kd6 14.Qxe5+! Kxe5 15.Bf4+ Kd4 16.Ne2 mate.

Well, we haven't seen this kind of picture much since the nineteenth-century "X vs Amateur" games. But I was willing to believe that he had overlooked the queen sacrifice, and was hoping he would let me play it on the board rather than resigning. In fact, I was rather excited and couldn't force myself to recheck my calculations, and played 11.Ne5 pretty much instantly. It's too bad I didn't recheck, because it could have saved me some trouble. Although I am not sure even looking again would help, because I was obviously in a mental fog that day.

You probably already guessed what he played - 12...Kd7. After this I pretty much wanted to resign right away, but saw that there was at least a little hope, so I played on, with 13.Rf7+, and he sunk into thought...

I was pretty happy about saving the game after blundering a piece against a decent opponent. It was an obviously flawed but still exciting game, so I decided to comment it here. Of course, this was a warning that I was capable of any kind of strange hallucinations.

In the next round (on the same day), however, I made a blunder from which it was impossible to recover.

I reached this winning position, with over an hour on the clock. The black king is trapped  by the passed g-pawn and the wonderful knight on e5, while the black pieces are too far away. Now 42.g6 was the simplest win. I saw this, and thought Black would have to anticipate the threat of 43.Rh2 and Rh7+ followed by Ng4-f6 by playing 42...Kg8. Then White can play 43.Rh2 anyway, and after 43...Rxa2 44.Rh7 Rg2 (forced since Ng4 is a threat) 45.Rxa7 and Black can resign - White will just play Rb7 and collect the b-pawn and then bring the king up.

It turns out that it is slightly more complicated, since after 42.g6 Black can play 42...b4, and White will have to find a way out of the checks - 43.Rh2 Kf6 (43...Rxa2 44.Rh7+ Kf6 45.d4 wins) 44.Rh7 Kxe5 45.g7 Nd1+ 46.Ke2! Rxa2+ 47.Kf3 Rf2+ 48.Kg3 Rf1 49.Kh2 Rf2+ 50.Kg1 and White wins. However, it would not be hard to find that since all of the moves are forced.

42.Kd4 is probably also good enough, but not the most simple.

However, after thinking for fifteen minutes I played 42.Rf2??, simply heading for the same position as 42.g6 in a different way. For example 42...Rxa2 43.Rf7+ Kg8 44.g6 Rg2 45.Rxa7, with the same position as above.

Naturally after 42...Nd1+ I resigned and quit the tournament as well. 

Hozzászólások


  • 5 hónap ezelőtt

    unusualkid

    If you have to do chess tactics go to www.chesstempo.com/

  • 5 hónap ezelőtt

    unusualkid

     If you can't figure it out, here is the complete game.
  • 15 hónap ezelőtt

    hqfull_23

    [COMMENT DELETED]

  • 21 hónap ezelőtt

    victorpu

  • 21 hónap ezelőtt

    victorpu

  • 21 hónap ezelőtt

    victorpu

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    eagles_claw

    Instructive. But may I ask who was this GM that said, "long variation, wrong variation?"

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    ChessAdmin_01

    This may sound a bit strange, but if this occasional board vision issue (how I would describe the one-movers) is a major factor in preventing further advancement of your game, then it may turn out to be a positive thing from an improvement standpoint.

    Why? It's an issue that's 1) already identified and 2) the solution is relatively simple in concept, if rather difficult to execute in practice. It is normally easier to continue along with whatever feels natural when calculating than to deliberately step back mentally to do a board check either with the actual position or a "stepping stone" position.

    It happens to everyone at every level, so I hope you don't view it as a personal bugbear, but rather as a surmountable challenge. I much appreciate the annotations for this and the last two posts and have always enjoyed your writing.

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    kevinsmithstudio

    just when I start to think I'm "getting good" at chess I'll blunder like this or worse.  This is what is so facinating about chess and makes it so anyone can beat anyone anytime!  I too, have finished tournaments feeling defeated like this, however it's part of the game and I think I've gotten better and setting up the pieces and playing again with a fresh perspective.  Great article!

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    ClavierCavalier

    DED4444, Qxf5?  The blue line is what I assume you meant, but the mainline is what you actually said...  :-p



  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    DED4444

    [COMMENT DELETED]
  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    sryiwannadraw

    great!

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    ClavierCavalier

    Those are alternate moves.  Sometimes they're the best move, sometimes they're equal.  The red is an alternate to the alternate.

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    BigHickory

    If you solve the "foggy brain" problem, please share your secret!   I played in a tournament recently where I dropped a piece for no compensation in two different games.   In one game I got lucky and salvaged a draw because my opponent didn't know how to play the endgame for a forced win.   A win in the second blundered game would have given me 4.5 out of 5 for a first place tie in my section, but 3.5 put me completely out of the money.

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    zacharycat

    The first game looks like a speculative sacrifice by white based on superior development. Neither side saw the refutation and a draw resulted.

    In the second one a knight fork was missed, one of the most common blunders but not for a titled player. Horribly dissapointing after getting a winning position but it happens. Purdy's rule was always to look at all checks & captures for the other side before finally moving.

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    zia-newversion

    This may sound dumb but even though I have learnt the standard algebraic notation I haven't yet figured out what the moves in parantheses signify. I often find them in game analysis and articles. For example (Scandinavian Defence, Marshall Gambit):

    1. e4 e5 2. exd5 Nf6 (2... Qxe5 3. Nc3 Qa5) 3. Nc3 e6

    What do the moves in red mean?

    Do they mean what white was expecting or what black should have done or just another possible scenario?

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    aconnel1

    [COMMENT DELETED]
  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    OMan86

    I know someone else has said it, but I think it's excellent that you use games that you did not win in order to be instructive! Thanks for sharing

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    mason286

    reminds me of myself

  • 22 hónap ezelőtt

    solskytz

    [COMMENT DELETED]
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