GM Hou Yifan and open lines

Attacking the King successfully remains the most attractive part of chess. GM Hou Yifan takes advantage of the open f-file and poor placement of black's Bishops pair while it gets the black King and the full point. Enjoy!

[Event "Nakhchivan Open 2015"][Site "Nakhchivan AZE"][Date "2015.05.02"][Round "1.3"][White "Hou, Yifan"][Black "Aghayev, Nijat"][WhiteElo "2686"][BlackElo "2393"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "1r6/4r2k/bb1pNqpp/p1pP4/1p2P2P/4Q1P1/PPR3BK/3R4 w - - 6 29"][ECO "C25"] 29. Rf2 Qe5 30. Nf8+ {first try to get to the King} Kg7 31. Ne6+ Kh7 32. Rf4 {second try targetting the g6-pawn} Rbb7 33. h5 Rg7 {there's not a lot left to defend the King} (33...g5 34.Rf5 Qh8 35.e5 dxe5 36.Qe4 Qg8 37.Rf7+ Kh8 38.Qxe5+ Qg7 39.Qxg7#)(33...Qxh5+ 34.Rh4 c4 35.Qc1 {the h6-pawn is doomed}) 34. hxg6+ {the final assault} Rxg6 35. Nf8+ Kg7 36. Nxg6 Kxg6 37. Rf5 Qe8 38. Qf4 Qe7 39. e5 {the last needed move to open up black's position} dxe5 40. Rxe5

World Champion destroys top opposition

The World Champion GM Magnus Carlsen has won another top level tournament "Gashimov Memorial" with an overwhelming 7 out of 9 score (no losses). In round 7 he took advantage of the material imbalance (Queen and pawn for Bishop and Rook) and forced GM Kramnik to resign when facing a sure checkmate. Enjoy!

[Event "Gashimov Memorial"][Site "Shamkir AZE"][Date "2015.04.24"][Round "7"][White "Carlsen, Magnus"][Black "Kramnik, Vladimir"][WhiteElo "2863"][BlackElo "2783"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "1Q6/5p1k/4bKpp/8/1P3PP1/7P/5r2/8 w - - 1 47"][ECO "C65"]{Annotator "GM Lubomir Kavalek/The Huffington Post"}47. f5 gxf5 ({After} 47... Bxf5 48. Qa7 $1 {the double-attack on the rook and the f7-pawn wins.}) 48. Qg3 $1 {Magnus chooses the faster win, finding another way to reach the square g7 with his queen.} (48. g5 {also wins:} Rg2 49. h4 hxg5 50. h5 {Renewing the threat 51.Qf8, White wins.} Kh6 51. Qh8#) 48... Rf1 49. g5 {Black can't cope with multiple mating threats.} (49. g5 h5 (49... f4 50. Qh4) (49... Rc1 50. gxh6) 50. g6+)

GM Korchnoi teaches tactics

Do you remember that feeling your position is ripe for a nice combination? I took the challenge to solve the position GM Korchnoi built up nicely against the young GM Shaked; my first reaction was to sac the Queen, then stepped back to a more down to Earth approach of a Rxg7 sac, followed by winning black's Queen with a Bxd4 fork. Of course I did not spend nearly enough time to really understand the position; however GM Korchnoi's masterful combination is on a different level. Replay and learn from it! I did

[Event "Cannes Generations"][Site "Cannes FRA"][Date "1998.02.27"][Round "7"][White "Korchnoi, Viktor"][Black "Shaked, Tal"][WhiteElo "2625"][BlackElo "2535"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "2r1r2k/6bp/pqb5/1p1p1Q2/3n4/1P2N3/PB3PB1/1K1R2R1 w - - 0 1"][ECO "E10"]1.Rxd4! {If you do not have the right idea, this is not easy to see. Instinctively Rxg7 was my choice} Bxd4 2.Qf6+!! {Here is a spectacular Queen sac any solid player might sense it being possible. Personally I was looking at Qxh7 as a way to go. Now it is easy to see what this is all about} Bxf6 3.Bxf6+ Kg8 4.Bxd5+ Kf8 5.Rg8#

Rooks on open lines

Finishing a game in style is everyone's dream. Alisa (team USA) got to do that by using 2 open files leading to the opposing King and the very nice cooperation of all white pieces during the final attack. Klaudia's pieces (team POL) were powerless as beside the open lines dominance by white, black's Bishop was no match for white's Knight. In general a Knight on the rim is dim, but things improve dramatically when the attack goes along that rim!

[Event "Women's World Teams 2015"][Site "Chengdu CHN"][Date "2015.04.20"][Round "2.4"][White "Melekhina, Alisa"][Black "Kulon, Klaudia"][WhiteElo "2235"][BlackElo "2310"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "3rr1k1/5q2/ppp1b3/2p1p3/P1P1P1pN/1P2Q1P1/2P3K1/R6R w - - 0 32"][ECO "B31"]32. Raf1 {The last needed attacker arrives} Qd7 33. Qg5+ Qg7 34. Ng6 Rd2+ 35. Kg1 $1 {White goes for mate, not material advantage} (35. Qxd2 Qxg6 36. Qh6 {white is clearly winning} ( 36. Rh6 $1)) 35... Rdd8 36. Rh8+ $1 {A thunderous move ending the game in spectacular fashion} Qxh8 37. Ne7+ Kh7 38. Qg6#

GM Hansen attacks

The Canadian GM Eric Hansen has been playing very good for a while now. The following deadly attack he unleashed against his opponent, must produce a powerful impression on the public. There was simply nothing black could do to stop it!

[Event "Reykjavik Open 2015"][Site "Reykjavik"][Date "2015.03.11"][Round "2"][White "Hansen, Eric"][Black "Tjomsland, Stig"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "3r1r1k/1p1qnp1p/pbppn1p1/4pN2/P3P3/2PP1Q1P/1PB2PP1/2BRR1K1 w - - 0 21"][ECO "C65"]21.d4!! gxf5 22.exf5 Nxd4 23.cxd4 Bxd4 24.f6 Ng6 25.Qh5 d5 26.Rxd4 exd4 27.Re7 Rg8 28.Rxd7 Rxd7 29.Bxg6