Blog Profile / Chess Skills

Filed Under:Hobbies / Chess
Posts on Regator:896
Posts / Week:2.2
Archived Since:August 3, 2009

Blog Post Archive

Here we go again!

Finding the study by Leonid Kubbel (see "One by Leonid Kubbel") in Tal's Winning Chess Combinations (1979), sent me back into a book that I bought last summer. Genrikh Moiseyevich Kasparian, 888 Miniature Studies (2010) contains fifteen of Kubbel's studies, as well as some background about the composer. Show More Summary

One by Leonid Kubbel

In Tal's Winning Chess Combinations (1979) by Mikhail Tal and Victor Khenkin, each section concludes with several exercises. There are six at the end of chapter II, "The Bishop". Five game me minimal difficulties. That is, I solved most quickly and all accurately. Show More Summary

Rook versus Bishop

When I think that I understand something, I expect to be able to execute the maneuver in mere seconds. Sometimes, my understanding of the patterns is not strong enough. It is well-known that rook versus bishop is usually a draw, but that a few positions favor the rook. Show More Summary

Making my Point

3 weeks agoHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

In "Bishop and Knight Checkmate," I offered some mild criticism of Kevin at In his YouTube video teaching checkmate with bishop and knight and repeats the phrase, "it doesn't really matter," as he emphasizes general concepts. Show More Summary

Bishop and Knight Checkmate

3 weeks agoHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

Forcing checkmate with a bishop and knight requires piece coordination and foresight. It is the most difficult of the elementary checkmates. I remember being on the weaker side in a game on the Internet Chess Club in the late 1990s.Show More Summary

Seeing Patterns

4 weeks agoHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

Tal's Winning Chess Combinations (1979) has influenced my perception. Last week, I read the first chapter of this book by Mikhail Tal and Victor Khenkin, which exists under several titles with and without Tal's authorship. This chapter concerns the rook and corridor checkmates and checkmate threats. Show More Summary


last monthHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

In a blitz game this morning, I had an uh-oh moment. Either I was losing my queen or a bishop. I spent 21 seconds contemplating the position, and reasoned that I had compensation for the queen. Then, in the complications, my opponent faltered. Show More Summary


last monthHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

An appalling number of chess games are lost (and won) because a player puts a piece where it is free for the taking. Chess players use the term en prise, which no one in America pronounces correctly, when a piece is within grasp (see Edward Winter, "En Prise [Chess Term]," History Notes, updated 28 February 2015). Show More Summary

Develop Your King

last monthHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

In one of my many blitz games this morning, I had one of those many experiences when I realized that I was playing poorly and now seemed to be losing material. Stripes,J (1806) -- Internet Opponent (1852) [D06]Live Chess, 16.05.20171.d4...Show More Summary

Play as Philidor

last monthHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

As may be well-known, François-André Danican Philidor asserted, "pawns are the soul of chess." In Analysis of the Game of Chess (London, 1790), he developed this idea with a number of games showing pieces standing in the rear so as to support a group of pawns that decide the game. Show More Summary

Imbalances and Planning

last monthHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

Years ago, I read Jeremy Silman, How to Reassess Your Chess, 3rd ed. (1993). The book offers useful instruction concerning imbalances and planning. However, sometimes in blitz, I play as if I am in utter ignorance of how to assess a position. Show More Summary

Elementary Checkmate

last monthHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

There is nothing difficult about this checkmate in two, but it is notable. This position arose in a blitz game this morning. Much of that game resembled a correspondence game that I won two years ago (see "Beating a National Master"). Show More Summary

More of the Same

last monthHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

In my Knight Award exercises, I include a position from Horvath -- Vigus, Haarlem 1998. White to move This exercise was part of my lesson of the week just before the winter holiday last December, where it was paired with a similar position...Show More Summary

Breaking Down Tactics

2 months agoHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

Some tactics training sessions are long; others short. Yesterday morning, I attempted three problems on Tactic Trainer on my iPad. This app, which sells for $2.99, is one that I have used off and on for several years. As the database of problems are stored on my device, it is useful when I go off the grid--away from internet service. Show More Summary

The Polgar Brick: eBook Edition

2 months agoHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

A Review Chess: 5334 Problems, Combinations, and Games by László Polgár contains 306 checkmate in one, 3412 checkmate in two, 744 checkmate in three, and then 600 miniature studies. These miniatures (game of 25 moves or less) are sorted into six groups. Show More Summary

Watching Fireworks

2 months agoHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

A couple of evenings ago, I played a blitz game online that seemed as though it turned bad in a hurry. My assessment was wrong. At the very moment when my opponent opened up the center and initiated exchanges, causing me to feel helpless, I had a clear win. Show More Summary

The Final Lesson

2 months agoHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

My after school chess clubs meet from October through April. The end date varies from year to year, but corresponds with the Washington State Elementary Chess Championship. This year, the state championship is tomorrow in Tacoma. It has been in Spokane twice. Show More Summary

One from Greco

2 months agoHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

The oldest English language book that presents games from Gioachino Greco (c.1600 - c. 1634) is Francis Beale, The Royall Art of Chesse-Play (London 1656). This book contains 154 games attributed to Greco, as well as examples of Fool's Mate and Scholar's mate. Show More Summary

How Easy?

2 months agoHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

I created this exercise four years ago for my students. It is one of what I call "one-move worksheets". I create a single page of four to nine exercises that I am able to photocopy for my chess students. I have made some of these worksheets available to other coaches. Show More Summary

Tactics: Basic and Advanced

2 months agoHobbies / Chess : Chess Skills

Lesson of the Week Bobby Fischer has been my theme this week. Most of my students have seen various positions derived from his brilliant win against Donald Byrne at the Rosenwald Trophy Tournament in New York, 1956. The whole game is posted at "Byrne -- Fischer, New York 1956". Show More Summary

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