A Pleasant Opponent

“Ya gotta give squares to get squares.” – Bobby Fischer

A pleasant game with a pleasant opponent who did not grouse but sat down and attempted to analyze afterwards.

The only real cuteness in the game is Black’s 20… Qc5.

Jonathan and I in our chat afterwards disposed of some common misconceptions about openings.

  • The names mean nothing. Openings are a continuum of related positions.
  • Don’t spend much time memorizing lines. For the beginner, this is equivalent to missing the forest for the trees.
  • Focus on enduring characteristics of a position

In line with this latter, consider the Sicilian. Bronstein used to refer to the “3-row defenses”, where Black’s army is initially constrained to the first three rows. As opposed to the 4-row defenses, e.g., the Giuoco Piano, White must expend an extra move to make contact with the enemy. Provided Black’s setup in those three rows is flexible enough, White’s necessity of stretching out gives Black has enough time to counter White’s initiative and benefit from any holes White has left behind in his position by dint of his exertions towards the far side of the board.

Jacques Delaguerre