The Problem With Opening Theory

Once upon a time, playing the opening phase of a chess game was fairly straight forward and simple. Classical theory subscribed to the notion that you merely had to occupy the board’s center with pieces. This is why you find games played before the hyper-modern school’s revolutionary ideas on opening theory starting with 1. e4…e5. This still widely played first move for both players allowed the King-side Bishop and Queen instant access to the board. When the hyper-modern school, led by Nimzowitsch and Reti, introduced centralized control using long distance pieces that could influence the board’s center from a safe distance, opening theory started on a long and often difficult to understand journey. Today, opening theory has become so complicated that even seasoned and experienced players have trouble with their opening studies. As for the beginner? They find themselves hopelessly lost in a quagmire of variations and complicated lines. The real problem with opening theory, for the beginning and average player, is that it’s become far too complicated to easily study.

The technological revolution that’s given beginners a plethora of choices when it comes to studying the opening further complicates things. When I first took up the game, you bought a book and learned opening theory by playing through page after page of various openings, most of which had little in the way of useful commentary, and then applied that knowledge to your games. While the advanced player could pick up bits and pieces of useful information from these books, a beginner such as myself, would become hopelessly lost. Again, there was little in the way of useful commentary. The question I found myself asking after having played through the first few moves of an opening I found in a book was “why was this move made?” Even today, with instructive DVDs and interactive programs created to teach a specific opening, beginners are still confused. Why all the confusion?

Many of the openings played by both professional and club player alike were created hundreds of years ago. They were fairly straightforward back then because they were new. However, these openings have all gone through long periods of change because strong players were constantly refining them over time, adding variations to deal with specific moves made by their opponents. These variations improved the original opening. However, an opening that once had a mainline and a variation or two suddenly had a slew of additional variations, all of which had to be understood in order to play a particular opening well. Add computer programs, now strong enough to add additional input regarding specific opening moves, and you’re left with further confusion on the part of the beginning or average player.

I happen to love studying opening theory and because I’ve taught and coached chess for many years, I have a good understanding of a wide variety of openings. However, the beginner embarking on the study of opening theory probably isn’t going to share my enthusiasm. They’re going to be confused and frustrated. The beginner wanting to improve their opening play will pick an opening that looks interesting to them, purchase a book or DVD on that opening, start studying and then find themselves quickly lost. How does the beginner avoid becoming lost?

To truly be able to get the most out of studying a specific opening, you have to fully understand the underlying mechanics of opening theory, the opening principles. These principles form the foundation for every good opening no matter how different one opening is from another. Understanding the opening principles completely is the only way a beginner can hope to learn and master a specific opening. So important are these principles that you shouldn’t be allowed to read a book about a specific opening until you’ve read a book about the underlying principles common to all openings. To avoid having to purchase a book that helps you understand how to read another book, I’m going to give you a quick explanation of the opening principles that you can use to determine why a move was made as you read through a book or watch an instructional DVD on a specific opening.

The opening is essentially a race to see which player gains greater control of the board’s center (d4, d5, e4 and e5) first. The opening generally represents the first twelve to sixteen moves. The opening principles guide you through the tasks you must undertake during this time frame in order to achieve your opening goal, controlling the board’s center. Note that openings for Black generally have the word “defense” attached to their names, indicating it’s an opening for Black while openings for White simply use the opening’s name. All decent openings will employ the following principles.

Principle one, control the center of the board with a pawn or sometimes two. This means moving the “e” “d” or “c” pawn. In openings for White, one of these pawns will be moved two squares forward so that it attacks or controls one of Black’s two center squares, e5 or d5. Black will counter by moving the “e” “d” or “c” pawn two squares to control White’s center squares e4 or d4. There are some openings in which Black will move a pawn one square forward to either e6, The French Defense or c6, The Caro Kann. Do yourself a favor and avoid openings that start with the “f” pawn being moved first.

Principle two, develop your minor pieces (Knights and Bishops) toward the center of the board. One thing all good openings have in common is the development of Knights and Bishops towards the center of the board. If White moves the King-side Knight on move two, it will more likely than not move to f3. From f3, the Knight attacks or controls e5 and d4. White might move the Queen-side Knight to c3 on a subsequent move because from c3 the Knight attacks or controls e4 and d5. Black’s ideal Knight squares are c6 and f6. As for the Bishops, here things can get a bit tricky. In The Italian Opening, after 1. e4…e5, 2. Nf3…Nc6, White moves the king-side Bishop to c4. This follows our second principle, developing minor pieces towards the center. From c4, the Bishop attacks or controls d5 and puts pressure on the weak f7 pawn. However, beginners often become confused by The Ruy Lopez or Spanish Opening. After 1. e4…e5, 2. Nf3…Nc6, White moves the King-side Bishop to b5. The beginner has trouble seeing how this influences the center. The Black Knight on c6 defends the pawn on e5. If white trades the b5 Bishop for the c6 Knight, the Black pawn on e5 is no longer defended. This is an example of a piece indirectly controlling the center. There are some openings that place a minor piece on a square that doesn’t directly attack or control a center square. These pieces are more often than not, indirectly influencing control of the center by attacking an opposition piece that is itself directly controlling the center.

Principle three, castle your King to safety. When beginners first learn these three primary principles, they’re taught that they should castle early which translates to castle as soon as you can. However, when they read a book or watch a DVD on specific openings, they find that castling occurs much later in the game than they’re taught. This is because the games being represented in the instructional material are usually the games of highly skilled players who hold off castling in favor of further piece development. They don’t castle early because their King isn’t in danger. They make moves that further gain control of the center instead.

The one thing you’ll notice when reading a book or watching a DVD on a specific opening is the constant development of pawns and pieces in order to gain greater control of the board’s center. When a move is made during the opening you’re studying, examine all of the squares that the just moved pawn or piece controls. The opening is the phase of the game where you activate pieces, moving them to squares that give them greater mobility and thus greater control of the board’s center. Players also make moves that restrict their opponent’s pieces. Often, as in the case of a player moving the “h” pawn, the move is made to keep a Bishop from pinning a player’s Knight to either the Queen or King. There’s a good reason for each move made in a specific opening. Because commentary is often sparse, it’s up to you to determine why a move was made. Take your time and try to figure out the reason for a specific move. I recommend using an online search engine, such as google, to help you with your opening studies. There are plenty of websites that offer great commentary on various openings.

Yes, it will be confusing for beginners to study opening theory but if you take the time to really learn the opening principles before taking on a specific opening, you’ll have an easier time with your studies. A book I recommend is Chess Openings for Dummies by James Eade. It provides an excellent, basic guide to the opening principles and walks you through a number of openings for both Black and White. It’s a good place to start because it will also help you select a good opening to further study. Remember, you have to learn the underlying opening principles before you can truly understand any opening. Here’s a game to enjoy until next week!

Hugh Patterson

Students Analysis

“Believe in yourself. You are braver than you think, more talented than you know, and capable of more than you imagine.”
Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart

Our regular homework challenge brings to the surface very interesting contributions. I mentioned a number of them here in previous articles as samples for many aspects of the game. This week I am going to stand down and let one of my students do the talking. You can try the puzzle in question below even if it might be too easy for you. If your chess level is way above it, challenge yourself to solve it as quickly as possible. The recommended level is mentioned at the top of the article. The questions were:
a) Analyse the position and explain what is White doing, as well as how Black stops it
b) Who is better here?
c) White to move must find the best continuation

Without any further ado, here is the most interesting answer I have received from Eric; from this point on all comments are by him unless otherwise noted:

a) White is trying to checkmate on g7, with a knight and a pawn, because Black has a rather open position. Also, Black’s knight defends the checkmate, even if it is awkwardly placed. It still does a job on e6. White’s knight is in the way of the rook which could produce a very strong checkmate. So, we have to find out how to move that knight without making it a silent move. If White loses his knight somehow, the attack will be somewhat less strong.

b) White is better. Position analysis:
Material is equal
Kings: Black’s king is more open then White’s king and Black’s king is attacked and open. White’s king is not attacked and safe so far. Black is in more trouble than white.
Black’s open position is due to the Black pawns which are out of place.
Black’s knight is not positioned better than White’s knight but serves one useful purpose: it defends the checkmate. No other piece could defend this checkmate unless they sacrificed the piece.
Black has less pawn islands which is an advantage, but not very helpful because his king is under attack, and the queens are still on the board. White is better here because of those reasons.

Eugen Demian

A Rook Endgame by Grigory Levenfish

The player playing White in this game, Grigory Levenfish, wrote a famous book on rook endgames together with Vassily Smyslov. Towards the end of the game there is a nice bit of technique when White sacrifices his f-pawn to make the c-pawn unstoppable:

Sam Davies

Book of the Century

As you might imagine, Matthew Sadler and Natasha Regan’s book about AlphaZero, Game Changer (New in Chess 2019), was at the top of my shopping list on my recent visit to the Chess Shop. I was expecting to find a big pile on the New Releases table, and was disappointed to find nothing there. Perhaps they’d already sold out, even though it had only been published a few weeks. Eventually, while looking for something else, I found a solitary copy on a random shelf and quickly added it to my basket.

The first thing to notice is that it’s a large format, handsomely produced paperback of over 400 pages. Yes, a hardback would have been even nicer, but, as Christopher Robin said to Pooh, you don’t get honey with balloons.

Part 1 deals with the history of computer chess competitions, the history of AlphaZero and an insightful interview with Demis Hassabis, CEO of DeepMind and a former child chess prodigy. Part 2 looks at how AlphaZero thinks and considers its style of play.

The meat of the book is Part 3, which concerns themes in AlphaZero’s play, looking specifically at piece mobility and attacking the king. The chapters here are enhanced by comparisons with games played by celebrated human players. Looking at the games, along with those I’d already seen, one thing quickly became apparent. Chess is not what I thought it was. I’d assumed top level chess was about creating weak pawns and grinding out endgame wins. Top level human chess, perhaps, but top level computer chess is very different. Not only very different, but much more exciting and beautiful than I could have imagined. Chess, according to AlphaZero, is about long-term material sacrifices in exchange for open lines and attacking chances against the enemy king. Some of the games are truly amazing.

Finally, AlphaZero’s opening repertoire is considered. It prefers closed games with White, starting with d4, Nf3 or c4 instead of e4. It meets e4 with the Berlin Defence to the Ruy Lopez and favours the Nimzo-Indian Defence against d4.

Other authors would have written a very different book on this complex subject, but I can’t conceive of anyone writing a better book. The games, of course, are top class, but so are the writing, the analysis and the structure. As far as I’m concerned this is, so far, the chess book of the century, and one of the most important of all time. Whatever you do, don’t miss it. Congratulations to the authors and publisher on an outstanding achievement.

Here’s a game in which our hero sacrifices the exchange for long term pressure on the long diagonal against the black king.

Richard James

Building Blocks

What would you do if the only light bulb that illuminates your living room suddenly went out, leaving you in the dark? You would change the bulb! What if you didn’t have a ladder but instead had a bunch of two foot square wooden cubes and those cubes provided the only way to reach the broken bulb? You would have to carefully arrange the cubes in a way that allowed you to reach the bulb and change it! Simply scattering them around under the bulb wouldn’t help you achieve your goal. Instead, you’d have to arrange them in a way (a logical sequence) that allowed you to stand on top of them and reach the bulb. If arranged correctly, you would end up with something that looks like a small staircase. What do wooden cubes and a broken light bulb have to do with chess?

To change the broken light bulb using wooden cubes to gain the necessary height to reach it, you have to arrange the cubes in a specific way. The first layer of cubes creates a foundation for the next layer of cubes and so on, leaving you with a staircase built from the cubes. If that first layer (the foundation) isn’t correctly laid out, the next layer will be weak, unable to support your weight as you climb up it. In chess, each move we make creates a foundation for the next move as well as subsequent moves. If we make a weak move early on, we’re creating a poor foundation for the rest of our game. Moves are like building blocks. They have to be carefully put together, one move at a time, with each move supporting the next move.

Beginners have a problem with this way of thinking, one move creating a foundation for the next, because they live only in the moment. While they consider the distant future, delivering checkmate and winning the game, their moves are disjointed with no connection between one move and the next. They make a move without considering how that move effects their following moves. This is a very natural way of thinking for beginners because they haven’t yet developed the ability to calculate.

Beginners think of calculation in mathematical terms. What calculation means to the chess player is contemplating a candidate move (a move you’re considering making), considering your opponent’s best response to that move, then your best response to your opponent’s move and so on. They key to calculation for the beginner is coming up with the best response by their opponent to a candidate move. A candidate move is simply a move your considering making.

It’s always best to find three possible positive candidate moves you can make. I tell my students that there are two kinds of positive moves, good moves and great moves. A good move is just that, a move that does something positive. An example of a good move would be the development of a minor piece during the opening that allows you to gain more control of the board’s center (d4, d5, e4 and e5). A great move is one that creates a decisive advantage. A move that leads to a tactic that gives you a material advantage is an example of a great move. By simply making the first principled move you see, you might miss a better move. This is why you look for three possible moves. Searching further allows you to look at the position of pawns and pieces on the board in greater detail. While that first move might be the best move you can make, you might miss a better move (or even a great move) if you don’t really dig in mentally and examine the position thoroughly.

Once you find the move you’re going to make, it’s time to determine your opponent’s best response to that move. Here, you’ll want to pretend your playing as your opponent. If your playing as White, you now want to pretend your playing as Black. See if you can make a move that stops your initial candidate move. Look for the best move that can be made rather than the move you want your opponent to make. Once you find the best move your opponent can make, next determine how you’ll respond to that move. It takes a lot of practice to become proficient at calculation. However, it’s a skill you’ll need to develop if you want to become a strong chess player.

Now you have to consider how the move you’ve finally chosen effects your future moves. During the opening, for example, developing your King-side Knight and Bishop towards the center brings you closer to being able to castle. Developing the Knight first, then the Bishop and finally castling is an example of a sequence of moves in which one move works harmoniously with the next. These moves are harmonious because they are part of a plan. When you create a plan, your moves are tied together, being made with a purpose in mind. You need to have a plan, even if it’s only for the next two moves you’re going to make. The plan helps to organize your moves in a logical order. Beginners should keep their plans short and flexible. What do I mean by flexible?

We’ve all fallen victim to opening traps. I’ve seen plenty of junior players who win their games early on by springing traps on unsuspecting opponents. However, traps are not flexible. Traps usually involve making unprincipled moves that are bad from a principled perspective. If the traps fails, the person who laid the trap is left with a bad position. An example of a flexible plan would be developing your minor pieces during the opening or further activating your pawns and pieces during the middle game. You’re simply improving your position. Only when you have the opportunity for a real attack against the enemy King should your plan tighten up. Being flexible also allows you to deal with moves you didn’t expect your opponent to make.

In closing, remember that moves should be connected to one another like building blocks. One move creates the foundation for the next move and so on. Always play with a plan in mind and keep that plan flexible. Always look for three possible moves and consider you opponent’s response to any move you make. Doing this will make you a much better chess player. Here’s a game to enjoy until next week!

Hugh Patterson

Leonid Stein vs Mikhail Tal

When I ask people about their favourite chess personality, many answer that Viswanathan Anand is the most famous & lovable. Yet my work as a chess YouTuber has shown me that Mikhail Tal may be even more popular. So recently I have been looking into more of Mikhail Tal’s games and I came across an interesting fact that Mikhail Tal was never able to win against Leonid Stein. Out of 18 classical games Stein beat Tal with 3 to 0 with 15 draws. One can find more about Leonid Stein here.

Here is a game played by these two giants for you to enjoy:

Ashvin Chauhan

Deja Vu (3)

“Neo: Whoa. Déjà vu.
Trinity: What did you just say?
Neo: Nothing. Just had a little déjà vu.”
The Matrix, 1999

My previous article on the subject can be accessed HERE
Please have a look at below’s position from one of our club tournament games and see if there’s anything interesting about it:


No, I am not joking. Yes, I know White is crushing his opponent. Yes, I have been telling them to resign when the position is hopeless; however here Black has one last bullet left and he might as well use it.

If you have been working on your endgames, this is deja vu right? It helps there’s no distraction and you must look at the black pawns on the queen side. Black did the same and to my surprise (a pleasant one for sure) he did not just play meaningless moves until checkmate. They do that to annoy their opponents in revenge for losing. Black actually showed that he is familiar with the pawn breakthrough (level 3, lesson 28 in our app) and knows how to play it.

I am not sure White knew that much. Being up so much material can cloud one’s thoughts. It might not make sense when you read it, but in reality you can be guilty of overthinking it when you should not. My suggestion in such cases is to stay with the opponent and make sure you figure out what it wants to do. Once you got it, look for the simplest way to stop it. After their last attempt is taken care of, you can collect the win. Now enjoy the rest of the game.

Eugen Demian

Vera Menchik

The Kurt Richter book is not the only biography I’ve been reading. I also invested in a copy of Robert B Tanner’s biography of Vera Menchik (McFarland & Co 2016), a very different book about a very different player. (They played once, with Richter winning.)

As you’d expect from this source, it’s a beautifully produced hardback, which makes the large number of typos, incorrect names and other errors all the more surprising. The book really needed a competent proof reader: my rates are very reasonable.

Why should you want to read about Vera Menchik? Stylistically, she was the polar opposite of Richter in that her play tended to be solid and cautious, but, like many players of her era below the very top, she was prone to tactical oversights, sometimes, in her case, caused by time trouble. It’s suggested that, in today’s money, she’d be about 2100 strength. In the two strongest tournaments she played in, Carlsbad 1929 and Moscow 1935, she finished in last place. However, she was good enough to beat the likes of Euwe (twice), Reshevsky and Sultan Khan.

Her games are not especially interesting, but Vera’s importance was historical and social, as the first woman able to compete successfully against men in top level events. If you’re interested in chess history, or in women’s chess, you’ll want to read this book.

We have 354 games, which is fine, some with contemporary annotations, along with brief comments from the author (he’s about 2100 strength but using an engine). The biography, though, beyond descriptions of her games and tournaments, is disappointingly perfunctory. I’d have liked to have read much more about her life outside chess, much more about what was happening in women’s and girls’ chess at the time, much more about how both chess players and the general public reacted to a woman competing with some success against the world’s leading players.

A missed opportunity then: a valuable book, but one that could have been better with a bit more care and more interesting with more wide-ranging research.

I think there’s a gap in the market: we need a book about the social history of women’s chess, and, come to that, a book about the social history of children’s chess.

This is probably her best known game. At that point English masters such as Thomas and Yates were experimenting with what would become the King’s Indian Defence, but here the baronet treats the opening much too passively and allows our heroine a thematic sacrifice.

Here the future world champion plays carelessly and contrives to lose a favourable ending.

Finally, Vera outplays the Indian maestro in fine style.

Richard James

The Appropriate Minor Piece

The minor pieces, the Knights and Bishops, often befuddle the beginner because in many ways, they’re as different as night and day. While they both share the same relative value, each being worth three points, and first enter the game during the opening phase, the similarity ends there. Each of these minor pieces has a unique way of moving and capturing, allowing one to be more powerful than the other in a given position. Because beginners are still grasping the basic principles of play, they often use the wrong minor piece in a given situation or position. Let’s start by examining each of these minor pieces to define what makes one different than the other. We’ll start with the Bishop.

Each player starts the game with two Bishops, one that travels along the light colored squares and the other the dark colored squares. Bishops operate along the board’s diagonals. Because Bishops are limited to a single colored square, losing one Bishop during a game reduces the Bishop pair’s power by half. Bishops are long distance pieces, meaning that they can control or attack a large number of squares from a safe distance. Because their relative value is less than the major pieces, the Rooks and Queen, they can keep those powerful major pieces from occupying key squares needed to form attacking lines. The only downside to the Bishop is that it needs open space to be effective. In short, Bishops love mobility, long open diagonals that lead to the opposition’s side of the board. Now let’s look at the Knight.

The Knight is the hardest piece to master because, unlike the other pieces that move in straight lines along the ranks, files and diagonals, the Knight moves in an “L” shape. Each player starts the game with two Knights. While the Knight is a short distance piece, taking a lot longer to cross the board than the Bishop, it has a special power that the Bishop doesn’t have. The Knight can jump over pawns and other pieces, meaning that it can get to a given square much easier than any other piece. Knight attacks can’t be blocked because of this unique ability to jump.

During the opening, we develop our Knights and Bishops towards the center of the board. There’s an old adage, “Knights before Bishops.” Beginning students always ask me why they should develop their Knights before their Bishops since they both have the same relative value and are minor pieces. This is an excellent question. Developing your Knights before your Bishops isn’t a rule, it’s more of a principle or good idea. The answer to this question is quite simple. During the opening phase of the game, each player tries to gain control of the board’s center first. As each move is made during the opening, the position changes. We know our first opening task is to control the center of the board with a pawn. Our next opening task is to develop our Knights and Bishops towards the center. Because Knights can jump over pawns and pieces (both yours and you opponents), we don’t have to move a pawn to get the Knight into the game, which makes it easier to develop the Knight immediately. Where do we first move the Knight?Knights are easier to develop than Bishops because there is a crucial square for each of the player’s two Knights that allow those Knights to control the board’s center with maximum effect. White’s King-side Knight has the f3 square while the Queen-side Knight has the c3 square. For Black, those crucial squares are f6 and c6. Developing the Knights to these squares is common to nearly every opening. As for the other squares a Knight can move to when leaving it’s starting square? They do nothing to control the center so they’re not considered acceptable moves. In short, the Knights can automatically be developed to good squares on their first move.

The Bishops are a little trickier. After 1. e4…e5, 2. Nf3…Nc6, there’s an open diagonal for the King-side Bishop (the Bishop on f1). Typically, the Bishop will be moved to c4 (The Italian Opening) or b5 (The Spanish Opening). Which square you choose depends on which opening you wish to play. Then there’s the c1 Bishop which is locked in place until the d2 (or b2) pawn moves. This Bishop might not come into the game right away. Many players wait until later in the game to develop this Bishop, bringing it to a specific square to respond to a threat by their opponent or to create a threat against their opponent. Therefore, it’s easier to develop your Knights right away compared to the Bishops, which is why you hear that old adage Knights before Bishops. However, do note that there are a few openings in which the Bishop enters the game before the Knight.

Later in the game, the board might be filled with pawns and pieces, restricting the movement of long distance pieces such as the Bishop. Diagonals that were once open to the Bishops earlier in the game are now closed meaning the Bishops have limited mobility. Even though both Bishop and Knight share the same relative value, three points, the Bishops value decreases as it’s mobility decreases. This is where the Knight’s special power comes in handy. Because the Knight can jump over pawns and pieces, it has more freedom when it comes to mobility within a clogged position. In such situations, the Knight is the better weapon of choice. However, the Knight is a short distance piece so it has to get closer to the action to be effective. This means you’ll have to keep an eye out for any pawns or pieces that can capture your Knights.

Conversely, if the board has a lot of open diagonals, the Bishop is a powerful weapon because it can attack opposition material from a great distance. The Bishop can sit safely on your side of the board while harassing your opponent’s army on the other side of the board. Of course, and this goes for the Knight as well, Bishops control more territory (squares) when centrally located, so avoid moving your Bishops to the edges of the board (that goes for the Knights as well). We’ve talked about two very different positions, one clogged with pawns and pieces and the other full of open diagonals. Are there positions that fall somewhere in between?

Absolutely! There are positions in which both the Knight and Bishop can work together harmoniously. In these types of positions, there might be an area clogged with pawns and pieces and another area with an open diagonal. In such a position, you want to use both minor pieces to exploit the situation. One problem beginners have involves trying to force a game into a specific type of position because they favor one or the other of the minor pieces. While really strong players can steer a game into a specific type of position, such as one in which there are a lot of open diagonals which favors the Bishop, beginners haven’t yet developed the ability to do this. Therefore, the beginner should wait and see what type of position develops and then consider one minor piece or the other.

Know the differences between the minor pieces and the type of position that favors one over the other. Doing so will enable you to chose the right minor piece for the job or position at hand. Be equally skilled in using both the Knight and Bishop rather than favoring one over the other and trying to steer the game into a position that allows you to use that specific piece. Spend extra time mastering the Knight because he’s the hardest piece to become comfortable with. Work hard at improving your chess game and you’ll be rewarded. Here’s a game to enjoy until next week!

Hugh Patterson

A Petrosian Masterpiece

I found the 8th game of Korchnoi – Petrosian Candidates Quarterfinal (1977) extremely instructive. Although Victor the terrible won the quarterfinal, I consider this to be one of Petrosian’s masterpieces. After move either the strategy was quite easy to define as Black had a queenside majority against White’s in the center, but the execution was quite beautiful.

On move no 17 Korchnoi blocked Petrosian’s passed pawn but Petrosian found a neat and clean tactical solution with 18…Nc6! That led to an exchange of minor pieces and White got a powerful passed pawn on c6. On the other hand Black’s queenside majority was far from being dangerous. Then comes the most beautiful part, opening another front (the kingside) and ending the game with the Rxg6! shot.

Here is the game with very brief analysis.

Ashvin Chauhan