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Old 2013-12-21, 01:24   #1
cheesehead
 
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"Richard B. Woods"
Aug 2002
Wisconsin USA

22·3·641 Posts
Default Musings during the adjournment

When I'm speculating about possible continuations during a game, I form various hypotheses about my opponent's motives and goals. Of course, my opponent's actual motives may include not only various mixes of the ones I imagine, but also ones I fail to imagine. Nevertheless, such scenarios can be useful in exploring the strengths and weaknesses of each side even if none turns out to match the actual game continuation.

The scenario I started in the move 17 thread is based on the simple hypothesis that Black wants to trade his (weak) e- and f-pawns for our (stronger) d- and e-pawns.

Other possible hypotheses (some are contradictory) that could be explored include:

Black wants to castle (rather than just play Rf8), perhaps because he expects that his king will be more useful (or safer) on the kingside files than on the central files.
Black wants to position his king on the queenside.
Black wants to position his knights as strongly as possible.
Black wants to trade his bishops for our knights.
Black wants to trade his knights for our bishops.

[QUOTE=cheesehead;362547]A plausible continuation:

[B]17 ... f6 [/B][/QUOTE]If we don't capture, then 18 ... fxe5 gets both our e- and d-pawns. But we could play [B]18 Bh3[/B] attacking the e6 pawn. If then 18 ... f5, Black gives up hope of getting our e-pawn without sacrifice, but maybe White can't accomplish anything with a knight foray. 19 Ng5 Kd7 20 Nf7 Rf8 (or Rg8) 21 Nd6 (threatening Nxb5) Ba6 (or Ba8?) and our N/d6 looks strong but can't really accomplish anything. Black will trade with ... Nc8.
If Black protects his e-pawn the other way with 18 ... Nd8 19 exf6 Bxf6 20 Ng5 Bxg5 21 Bxg5 Black has some difficulties. (21 ... Nd5? 22 Bxd8 Rxd8-or-Kxd8 23 Bxe6)

Or what I previously posted:[quote][B]18 exf6 [/B][B]Bxf6 19 Ng5 Bxg5 20 Bxg5 Nd5[/B][/quote]As I said, this is based on the hypothesis that Black wanted to trade his f- and e-pawns for our e- and d-pawns. It seems that we can't prevent that, but we can try to get as best an outcome as possible by employing our strengths.

[B]21 Nf2[/B] (connecting our rooks) If now 21 ... e5? 22 Rae1 wins the e-pawn without trading our d-pawn for it.

If 20 ... O-O (to be continued)

Last fiddled with by cheesehead on 2013-12-21 at 01:26
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