Sunday, November 11, 2012

Recap of Chess Class 11/10/2012

Last Saturday's chess class, conducted by Columbia Academy, at Caldwell College was postponed until yesterday due to the hurricane. Students found the right move ...Qh6# on their homework assignments except that they wrote the move incorrectly as Qh6# leaving out the three dots. Remember to preface the move with three dots when it is played by Black.

At the demonstration board, I presented an instructive endgame illustrating the superiority of the bishop over the knight when there are pawns on both sides of the board. In the game, Bobby Fischer showed excellent technique, which is the ability to convert an advantageous position into a winning position and then to convert the winning position into a win. Fischer put his opponent Mark Taimanov in Zugzwang by gaining tempos with his bishop while Taimanov's knight was unable to gain tempos in return. The ability to gain tempos is an advantage that bishops have over knights. Zugzwang means that you are obligated to make a move, and your only remaining moves are losing moves. If the rules of chess allowed you to pass and not make a move, you could never lose such a Zugzwang position.

The class concluded with a practical session during which the players kept score. All games were adjourned at the end of the class and will be resumed next week.