4 Best Chess Tactics Ever
“The King is a strong piece.”, Wilheim Steinitz
From beginners to GMs, everybody loves to sacrifice in order to win an spectacular game. GM Damian Lemos has already shown two brilliant games from two of the best chess players in the chess history: Kasparov and Carlsen (and you can watch this video clicking here).
In today’s free video, GM Damian Lemos will explore 4 of the Best Chess Tactics Ever and you will have the opportunity to delve into the GMs thought while he shows amazing sacrifices and beautiful quieter moves.
Everybody loves sacrifices, even the best players can’t resist the beauty of a queen sacrifice. But, in fact, the quiet moves in the middle of a tactical storm are the more shocking to me. Lots of pieces hanging and one of the players plays a “simple” move…
I would like to illustrate my point analyzing one of the games the GM Lemos shows.
In this position, White is threatening the Bg7 and the h5-pawn, but what about 15…Bf6?
Now Black seems to be winning material… Can you discover what was White’s idea?
16.Rxh5! is the move White prepared.
Before continuining reading, I will give you two tasks:
- Look for the craziest move Black can play.
- Analyze the position and try to find the best move for Black.
If you have done both tasks, perhaps you have found that both moves are the same!
Black played 16.Kd7!! and he is winning! An amazing turn of events!
As the first World Champion said, the king is a strong piece that can defend himself, so why not to go for a walk in the middle of the board? (Please, don’t try this at home).
But, what on earth is happening?
Well, now the Rh8 is protected and the white queen can’t move without losing the Rh5.
If 17.Rxh8, then 17…Qxh8 puts a lot of pressure over the Nc3, and after 18.Qd2 Nb4! White is in a big trouble, as …Rxc3! is a powerful threat.
But White was also a smart player, and he exposed the black king with 17.Nc5+!? After 17…dxc5, White has two interesting options: 18.0-0-0+ and 18.Qd2+. Can you analyze both variations and decide how to play against them with the Black pieces?
18.0-0-0+ is easily refuted after 18…Nd4, as now 19.Rxh8 fails to 19…Bxg5+!, winning.
So White played 18.Qd2+ Nd4 19.Bxg4 (see the next diagram), when Black has again a decision to make: take the Rh5 (followed by …Qh8) of the Bg4?
19…Rxh5 20.Bxh5 Qh8 seems interesting, attacking the bishop but also trying to check on h1. But after 21.Be2 Qh1+ 22.Bf1, White is ready to castle long and his king will be safe.
Black played 19…Bxg4!, but it’s neccesary to see that after 20.Rd5+ Black is losing the Qd8. So, what was Black’s idea?
Indeed, both 20…Kc6 and 20…Ke8 are winning!
20…Kc6 is the steinitzian move. The king is very comfortable on c6! (not, I’m not crazy). The idea is that after 21.Rxd8 White can simply play 21…Rh1#! But White can be tricky and play 21.Qf4! giving air to the king and threatening the Bg4 too. Now, 21…Bd7?? loses (can you see why?). So, Black has to play 21…Nxc2+ 22.Kd2 Nxa1 23.Rxd8 Rxd8+ 24. Kc1 Be6 with a lot of pieces for the queen.
In the game, Black played the perhaps simpler 20…Ke8, as after 21.Rxd8+ Rxd8 Black can’t protect himself of the threats of Rh1# and Nf3+. For example: 22.f3 Nxf3+ 23.gxf3 Rh1+ 24.Ke2 Rxd2+ 25.Kxd2 Rxa1, with a winning material advantage.
So, White played 21.Qf4, but now Black can simply play 21…Bd7, and after 22.0-0-0 Black wins easily with… (solution on the video).
This is what I call crazy chess tactics!
If you like this type of games (who doesn’t?) and/or want to train your tactical abilities, don’t forget to watch the free video 4 Best Chess Tactics Ever.