Wednesday, February 27, 2013

An update on Behting from Robert Houdart.

I corresponded with Robert Houdart, the author of Houdini, whether Houdini is able to resolve the Behting study (diagram).
white to play and draw

Robert kindly advised that (translated from Dutch) "...The difficulty in the Behting study is not to find 1.Kc6 ( Houdini sees this as a clear draw ), but to see that 1.Ng7+ looses for white. This is very complicated , a position occurs of queen against 2 knights plus a pawn, that happens to loose for the queen ( with a nice zugzwang ). Please refer to the analysis on Unfortunately, this analysis lies beyond the capabilities of Houdini 3 on normal hardware..."

So we see that Houdini cant resolve all chess problems yet - but for us, mere mortals, it should be sufficient to help us improve our Blackmar Diemer games. Thanks Robert !

Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Behting study is sound !!

In november 2011 I showed Behting's study, that has puzzled chessplayers for more than 100 years now.

white to play and draw.

It should be known by now by most chessplayers that the surprising Kc6 draws, but in august 2012, looked into the problem and was asking for "cooks" - people wanting to investigate the problem and potentially show the problem is not sound as Ng7+ might also draw.

But in october, GM John Nunn concluded that the study is correct after all as Ng7+ looses.

Check out the analysis !

Sunday, February 17, 2013

A defensive wall of knights

I played against a Bojoljubow defense friday evening but failed to find the weak spot - and as it turned out, there was none. When I came home in the middle of the night, I started looking up the defense, and it seems the line my opponent played is not covered in Scheerer.

Guido De Bouver - Wilfried Gys
1.d4 Nf6 2.f3 d5 3.e4 dxe4 4.Nc3 exf3 5.Nxf3 g6 6.Bc4 Bg7 7.00 00 8.Qe1
I played 8.Ne5 some years ago the same opponent, and was very lucky to win after 8...Nc6, which gives black the advantage. Since then, I learned that Qe1 is better.

8...Bf5 9.h3
Maybe the immediate 9.Qh4 would be better.

The knight is normally played to c6, but black aims to create a defensive wall of knights.

10.Qh4 (diagram)

10...c6 11.Bh6 Qc7 12.Ng5 (diagram)
Completely equal, says my silicon assistant.

12...b5 13.Bd3 ?
13.Bb3 would have given white the advantage, but now black starts his counterplay.

13...Bxd3 14.cxd3 Qd6
Very good move - black is now clearly on top and I lost a piece a few moves later.

But how to play against this defensive wall of knights ? Let's look at the position after 9.Qh4 Nbd7 10.h3 (diagram above). We will look today at the line 10...c6 11.Bh6 (diagram) which was played in my game

a/ 11...Bxh6 12.Qxh6
...a1/ 12...b5 13.Bb3 Ne2 (=)
...a2/ 12...a5 13.g4 Bxc2 14.Rac1 b5 15.Ng5 (+=)
...a3/ 12...c5 13.Bb5 (=)
...a4/ 12...e6 13.g4 (+=)
...a5/ 12...Qc7 13.Ng5 (=)
...a6/ 12...Qb6 13.Bb3 (=)
...a7/ 12...Bxc2 13.Rf2 (=)

b/ 11...b5 12.Bb3 (=)

c/ 11...a5 12.g4 (=)

d/ 11...e6 12.Bb3 (=)

e/ 11...Qc7 12.Ng5 (as in the game)
...e1/ 12...e5 13.dxe5 (=)
...e2/ 12...e6 13.Bb3 (=)
...e3/ 12...Bxh6 13.Qxh6 (=)
...e4/ 12...b5 13.Bb3 (+=)
...e5/ 12...Qd6 13.Bb3 (=)

f/ 11...Qb6 12.Bb3 (=)

g/ 11...Bxc2 12.Bxg7 Kxg7 13.Rf2 (=)

So we see that white must play very carefully in this line. There is no golden bullet to demolish black's defensive position as there are no apparent sacrifices. A tough nut for the attacker !

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Small little French

The French defense is a great defensive tool, as it often seems impossible to demolish black's pawn structure. Also, black has the powerfull c5 push that tries to destroy white's centre. So white often seeks refuge in gambits, such as the Diemer Duhm ( 1.d4 e6 2.e4 d5 3.c4 ) or the Alapin Diemer ( 1.d4 e6 2.e4 d5 3.Be3 ).

But sometimes black also overplays his hand in the opening, such as the little miniature I played on the website under 3' time control.

Blackmardiemergambit - xxx

1.d4 e6 2.e4 d5 3.Nc3
Something normal for a change

Not that good...

4.exd5 cxd4 5.dxe6 (diagram)

Black must now capture with the bishop but chooses to walk on the wild side

5...dxc3 6.exf7+ Ke7 7.fxg8=N (diagram)
The underpromotion into the knight is the only winning move.

7...Ke8 8.Qh5+ g6 9.Qe5+ Kf7 10.Bc4
And black wisely resigned here.

That's what happens when "die hard" defender try to live dangerously !

Friday, February 8, 2013

The annoying Brombacher and Kaulich defenses

Refusing a gambit is sometimes the wiser choice. But how ?

Black can refuse the Blackmar Diemer in various ways. I already covered 4..e3, 4...Bf5 and 4...e5. Let's look into 4...c5 (diagram) today.

White's next move is crtitical. 5.dxc5 exchanges queens but wins back the pawn - but this damages white's queenside considerably. Scheerer suggests 5.Bf4, but that is not really an option as balck gets the better play. That leaves 5.d5

Black strongest alternative now is 5...exf3 6.Nxf3 (diagram)

Black strongest move is now 6...g6.Scheerer now correctly indicates that white should not play 7.Bc4 and recommends 7.Bg5. However, my silicon assistant recommends 7.Bf4 (diagram)

After the obvious 7...Bg7, white has 8.Qd2 00 9.000 (diagram).

But now my system indicates 9...a6 gives black a small plus !? Seems there is some work to be done here !

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Even weaker moves sometimes win

My opponent yesterday evening tried a Teichmann Exchange against me - and guess what - I had covered the line already in an earlier post. And guess another thing - I forgot about it ! But luckily I was able to pull off a nice attack, resulting in a nice win.

Guido De Bouver - Velibor Novakovic
1.d4 d5 2.e4 dxe4 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.f3 exf3 5.Nxf3 Bg4 6.h3 Bxf3 7.Qxf3 c6 8.g4 e6 9.g5 Nd5 10.Bd3 Be7 11.h4 Nd7 (diagram)
I covered this position in an earleir post "Black's difficult Teichmann Exchange defense" in May 2011. In there, I suggested 12.Nxd5, leading to an equal game.

12.Bd2 N7b6 13.000 Nxc3 14.Bxc3 Nd5 (diagram)
14...Qd5 would have been better, as the gambitplayer is not in a position to exchange queens.

15.Rdf1 00
Black is forced to castle into it

16.Qe4 (diagram)
An important move that appears frequently in white's attack in the Teichmann Exchange. It forces black to create a weakness.

16...g6 17.Bd2 Nb4 18.Bc4 Nd5 19.Kb1
A preparation move, so that the balck queen will not be able to check on g5.

19...b5 20.h5 (diagram)
Not so good. 20.Bd3 would have given me a decent advantage. But my move atatcks the black king at the expense of a piece - most chess players start makinmg mistakes when their king is attacked this way.

20....Bxg5 ?? 21.hxg6 1-0

So we see that Blackmar Diemer gambiteers dont necessarily have to play the best moves to create dispair in the defending ranks.