Lessons from a Single Game

The above was the title of a Dvoretsky article, analysing in depth the game Taimanov-Fischer, Buenos Aires 1060. But one often comes across single games, which are rich in instructional value, and those games are frequently not very well-known or ostensibly brilliant ones

I recall being deeply impressed by the following obscure game, played in the Moscow city championship. It is a model of the exploitation of the two bishops, but I was especially struck by Gulko’s dynamic play between moves 15-23. Rather than passively defending his c3-pawn at move 15, when his bishop pair advantage would have been very small, he realised that his temporary development lead was what was really important, and played very dynamically, to maintain and enhance it. Utilising tactics, such as back-rank threats, he succeeded in making it hard for Black to develop, and eventually forced transition into the sort of two-bishop ending White dreams of. Finally, immaculate and highly instructive technique wrapped up the full point.

I gave a full analysis of the game in my book 50 Essential Chess Lessons, but if you have not seen that, I recommend that you study the game carefully yourself.

Steve Giddins