Playing with a plan is a must in your quest to become better players. It takes time to master the art of creating good plans, but at the beginning this should be done consistently even if some plans would not be very good. Playing with a bad plan is better than playing without one! Of course each one of us is different and the same as in music we can "compose" different plans using the same pieces and positions. Sometimes there's only one clear cut perfect plan, while quite often various plans could lead to the same result while taking different roads.
This week's puzzle offers you a chance to create your own plan and execute it. Last move was 22... Rd3!? Your tasks:
a) Analyse the position and propose a plan for both sides (10 points);
b) Execute that plan to prove your point (10 points)
Total available points for this puzzle is 20. The answers will be published next week together with puzzle #110.
Puzzle #108 solution:
We have this position from the game Konstantinopolski - Veltmander, Tartu 1950.
"It seems as if the puzzles nowadays include a lot of sacrifices to gain the position or material to win.
King safety: this is a hard one, because both Kings are being threatened of an attack, but the White forces attacking the Black King seem a little
bit more dangerous, so I'm going with White's King is safer, but only by a little bit.
Position: Right away, we see that Black's Rook on a8 is not only not developed and not put to use, but also it is completely surrounded and blocked by its own pieces. This gives White development advantage. White, on the other hand, has an IQP and is making good use of it. The 2 Rooks are around it, using the files. The Bishops, too, using the open diagonals, and the Queen, right in the middle of it all. White's pieces are very mobile, and this is an even better thing because this is just the perfect position for a start of an attack.
Plan for White: take advantage of Black's temporary disadvantage, and also using the open files around his IQP to his advantage.
Plan for Black: This may be a good time to either counterattack, or defend/stop White's attack. If I was Black, I'd take that knight and get a little bit of counterattack, but also some more defense on the king.
Black's in trouble now. If he hides back into the corner, this will happen:
If 4... Kh7?? then 5.Bc3+ Bc4 6.Bxc4#
If 5... Kh8?? then 6.Qxh6+ Kg8 7.Bxe6#
If 6... Kg8?? then 7.Bxe6#
If 7... Kf8?? then 8.Qf7#
There's no escape now. At move 3, if the Black King moves out ("3... Kf8"), it will continue with this same line, mostly."
In the real game Black decided to counterattack right away with:
1.Bxh6! Ng4! (imediate counterattack) 2.Ng5 Bxh2+ 3.Kf1 Ba6! 4.Qxa6 Qf4! 5.Qe2 Nxh6 6.Nh3 Qh4 7.Qe4 and both players agreed to a draw.
Edwin, Karl, Andy Q, Andy Y - 20 points
Owen - 15 points
Nathaniel - 12 points
James - 10 points
Jeffrey, Alex - 8 points
Alex - 10 points for puzzle #107
Andy Q - 175 points
Karl - 172 points
Owen, Andy Y - 164 points
Edwin - 128 points
Humphrey, Alex - 126 points
Jeffrey - 108 points
Amir - 103 points
James - 92 points
Nathaniel - 56 points
Rick, Marko - 10 points