The only player who constantly manages to stay at the very top of the ratings the current World Chess Champion, Magnus Carlsen.
He is currently the world’s number 1 ranked player and an outstanding chess player with extraordinary achievements throughout his young career. Many chess enthusiasts call him the “Mozart of chess”.
In Magnus’ Miniatures, American GM Ron W. Henley – former second of Anatoly Karpov – analyzes instructive miniatures from Magnus Carlsen.
Everyone loves to win a miniature – a spectacular quick win as a result of opening preparation and cool tactics. It’s even better when you crush a strong opponent in such fashion.
In the last 15 years, the Norwegian chess sensation has defeated countless strong opponents in 25 moves or less. Big names like Anand, Caruana, Svidler, Shirov, Karjakin, Mamedyarov and Ding Liren are among his victims.
How did Carlsen outplay these Super GMs so quickly? And what can we learn about direct attacking play from these games?
GM Ron W. Henley takes you on a tour through Carlsen’s brilliancies, explaining what’s really going on in these games and why some of the strongest players in the world were unable to stop these crushing attacks.
In this free video preview, GM Henley takes a look at a number of games from 2001 and 2002.
Not only did Magnus win his miniatures for tactical reasons, he also outplayed some of his opponents for positional reasons. Although Magnus plays plenty of different openings, he usually shows a high-level understanding of the strategic and positional plans. These games are good examples of his superb positional understanding – already at a very young age.
Lessons on Magnus Carlsen
Magnus’ miniatures aren’t only entertaining, but they also have an instructive value for chess improvement. By going through all these quick wins by Magnus, GM Ron W. Henley extracts powerful lessons for our own game. It’s time to reveal the secrets of Magnus Carlsen’s success!
If you want to win many games in 25 moves or less, you definitely need to have a killer instinct at the chessboard. Your tactical brain needs to be in good shape and – once you have the initiative – you constantly need to look for knockout punches which finish the game immediately. Studying Magnus’ miniatures, it becomes clear that once Magnus has his opponents on the ropes, he doesn’t let them off the hook.
For example, take a look at the position on the left.
Magnus, playing Black, has a knockout punch at hand. His opponent just played 23.e4, trying to free his piece and attacking Black’s knight on d5.
However, Magnus counters with the stunning 23…Ne3!, forking White’s queen and rook. The point is that 24.Qxe6 loses to 24…Rxd1 mate.
After 24.Rxd8+ Rxd8 25.Qe2 (securing the queen), Magnus continued with another brilliant move to finish his opponent off – 25…Qc4+!! (see the diagram on the right).
White is completely lost. White needs to guard the d1 square and he needs to bring his king to a safe square. Again, 26.Qxc4 loses to 26…Rd1 mate and 26.Kb1 loses to 26…Rd1+, winning the queen.
Inside the Minds of Carlsen and Caruana
We knew Carlsen – Caruana was going to be close but few could have predicted that, for the first time in the 130 year history of the World Championship, there would be no decisive games whatsoever.
We found out what happens when two 2830+ players collide.
But what’s really going on at this elite level? And what lessons can we learn to improve our own game?
Ron Henley has spent the last few months analyzing the games of Carlsen and Caruana, discovering some surprising things about the methods they use to crush the world’s best players. He takes a close look at the most instructive games of these 2 players, breaking their favorite techniques down so you can use them in your games. Click here to get instant access with 35% off.