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Saturday, August 7, 2010

Miniature Win Against an FIDE Master

When I challenged my opponent in a 5 minute plus 12 second game on chess.com I had no idea I was playing an FM! Fortunately I selected my old standby opening, the Torre Attack. I say fortunately because I’ve played it for so long I’m fairly well-versed in it…pattern recognition is the key even if I don’t know a lot of specific lines.

It started out with Black using a K-Indian setup. Against that, I play a pretty standard system: 4.Nbd2 with the idea of playing e4 at once. Then I play c3 and develop the KB at e2. If Black plays, as he often does, …e5 I trade d4xe5, overprotect the eP with Re1 and Qc2 then play Nc4 and retreat the B on e2 to f1 then start pushing the Q-side P’s.

Here’s a sample of what I’m talking about from Kasparov-Martinovic, Baku, 1980:
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.Bg5 Bg7 4.Nbd2 d6 5.e4 0–0 6.c3 Nbd7 7.Be2 e5 8.dxe5 dxe5 9.0–0 b6 10.Re1 Bb7 11.Qc2 h6 12.Bh4 Qe7 13.Bf1 Rfe8 14.b4

On the other hand if Black opts for a Gruenfeld-type setup to contest the light squares e4, c4 and d5, then the best plan is to switch your thinking and play c4 instead of c3, then play it rather like a QGD. If that happens you’ll often have to submit to an IQP, so you need to be comfortable with that. Of course the Torre P-formation with P's on c3, d4 and e3 is also good, but in manmy cases you end up having to play c4 anyway, so I just prefer to do it at once.

In this game I was able to gain a significant amount of clock time in the opening because of my familiarity with it, so that was a good thing. Black had a pretty cramped position and was a P down in the final position, but he was far from lost! I think he was shocked by my 15.Nxc6 and simply missed the resource 15…Qc7 (I didn’t see it either). Had he played it, I likely would have boogered up the game at some point and lost…after all, the guy is a titled player and had he forced me to prove the win I probably wouldn’t have been up to it!


  1. Hi!

    Why do they call one group of opening "Open" and others "Closed"?


  2. For a more complete explanation than I can give here, check out the following sites: