Psychological Tricks

There are a lot of psychological tricks in chess that fall within the letter of the law. Deliberately getting into time trouble can raise an opponent’s blood pressure as can turning up late for the game. And then there’s the universe of draw offers, playing offensive openings (such as Tony Miles’s 1…a6 against Anatoly Karpov) etc.

What’s the best way to deal with this kind of thing? By keeping calm! And then these tricks tend to rebound against the perpetrator as their attempts to distract the opponent can take their own focus away from what matters most; the moves.

It’s impossible to know whether Garry Kasparov turned up late for the following game deliberately, there might have been another reason. Magnus Carlsen certainly found it nerve wracking but he kept his cool.



Author: NigelD

Nigel Davies is an International Chess Grandmaster living in St. Helens in the UK. The winner of 15 international tournaments he is also a former British U21 and British Open Quickplay Champion and has represented both England and Wales on several occasions. These days Nigel teaches chess through his chess training web site, Tiger Chess, which has articles, recommendations, a monthly clinic, videos and courses. His students include his 15 year old son Sam who is making rapid progress with his game. Nigel has written a number of chess books that are available at Amazon: