Understanding Prophylaxis – Play Like a Master!

Understanding Prophylaxis – Play Like a Master!

Prophylaxis is perhaps the most difficult concept to master to every club player. It seems to be very complicated, full of subtle and unintelligible moves, that only GMs can handle.

Nothing further from reality!

In this free preview of his Middlegame Mastery Course, IM Valeri Lilov clearly explains how this powerful concept can be applied in your own games.

But first things first: what is the prophylaxis? It’s thinking of what’s your opponent trying to do and, in case it’s necessary, to prevent it. It’s easy to say, but not easy to do.

IM Lilov takes two excellent games of GM Sergey Dolmatov to explain the details behind the way of thinking that will catapult your chess knowledge.Prophylaxis

Look carefully to the position on the right and think a bit about what would you play with the white pieces.

It’s not too difficult to understand that Black would love to play …d6-d5, as this will free all his constrained pieces.

But, after watching more thoughtfully, Dolmatov discovered that Black can’t immediately play …d5. For example, after a random move like 18.Rad1, 18…d5 can be answered by 19.Bxf8 Kxf8 20.b4!, fixing the new weakness on c5 and sealing the Bb7, which will be a permanent problem for Black.

For that reason, Black should prevent this playing first 18.Rad1 bxa4! 19.bxa4 and only now 19…d5!, with a good game (as White can’t play b3-b4 now)

This excellent reasoning make it clear that White should prevent this bxa4! idea. So, Dolmatov played the brilliant 18.Rab1!! This apparently silly move, is a very profound one that prevents all of Black’s ideas.

For example, if now 18…bxa4 19.bxa4 d5 White can take advantage of the open b-file to play 20.Bxf8 Kxf8 21.exd5 cxd5 22.dxe5, winning a pawn, as if Black takes on e5 he loses the Bb7!

If you want to really comprehend the prophylaxis, then watching this full class of IM Valeri Lilov will surely make a great impression in you.

And if there are lots of more critical concepts that you need to learn, IM Lilov is the right choice to study with, even what seems really difficult as planningmaneuvering or decision making. Get his full Middlegame Mastery Course clicling here.

2 comments on “Understanding Prophylaxis – Play Like a Master!

  1. neobinu says:

    can you give me pgn file of the game[if possible fully anotated please]

    1. Fernando iChess says:

      Dolmatov, Sergey
      Beliavsky, Alexander G
      1-0
      WhiteElo 2615
      BlackElo 2620
      1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 d6 8. c3
      O-O 9. h3 Nb8 10. d4 Nbd7 11. Nbd2 Bb7 12. Bc2 Re8 13. a4 Bf8 14. Bd3 c6 15. b3
      g6 16. Ba3 Qc7 17. Qc2 Rad8 18. Rab1 d5 19. Bxf8 Kxf8 20. b4 dxe4 21. Bxe4 exd4
      22. cxd4 Qd6 23. Qb3 Re7 24. Bc2 Rde8 25. Qb2 Rxe1+ 26. Rxe1 Rxe1+ 27. Nxe1 Nb6
      28. a5 Nbd5 29. Nd3 Bc8 30. Nc5 Nf4 31. Bd1 Qd5 32. Bf3 Qg5 33. Kf1 N6d5 34.
      Nde4 Qe7 35. Nc3 Qd6 36. Bxd5 cxd5 37. Qd2 h5 38. h4 Kg7 39. Qe3 Ne6 40. g3 f6
      41. Ke1 Nc7 42. Kd2 Bg4 43. f3 Be6 44. Ne2 Bf7 45. g4 hxg4 46. fxg4 Be6 47. g5
      Bf5 48. gxf6+ Kxf6 49. Qg5+ Kf7 50. Qe3 Ne6 51. Qg3 Qxg3 52. Nxg3 Nxd4 53. Nxf5
      gxf5 54. Nxa6 Nc6 55. Nc7 Nxb4 56. Nxb5 Kg6 57. Nd4 Na6 58. Ke3 Nc5 59. Kf4
      Nd3+ 60. Ke3 Nb4 61. Kf4 Nd3+ 62. Kf3 Nb4 63. Ne2 Kf6 64. Nf4 d4 65. Ke2 Kf7
      66. Kd1 Kf6 67. Kd2 Kf7 68. Ne2 Kg6 69. Nxd4 f4 70. Ke2 Kh5 71. Kf3 Kxh4 72.
      Kxf4 Kh5 73. Ke5 Kg6 74. Kd6 Kf7 75. Kc5 Na6+ 76. Kb6 Nb4 77. Nc6 Nd5+ 78. Kb7
      Ke6 79. a6 Kd7 80. a7 Nc7 81. Ne5+ Kd8 82. Nc4 Na8 83. Nb6 Nc7 84. Kc6 1-0

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2 comments on “Understanding Prophylaxis – Play Like a Master!

  1. neobinu says:

    can you give me pgn file of the game[if possible fully anotated please]

    1. Fernando iChess says:

      Dolmatov, Sergey
      Beliavsky, Alexander G
      1-0
      WhiteElo 2615
      BlackElo 2620
      1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 d6 8. c3
      O-O 9. h3 Nb8 10. d4 Nbd7 11. Nbd2 Bb7 12. Bc2 Re8 13. a4 Bf8 14. Bd3 c6 15. b3
      g6 16. Ba3 Qc7 17. Qc2 Rad8 18. Rab1 d5 19. Bxf8 Kxf8 20. b4 dxe4 21. Bxe4 exd4
      22. cxd4 Qd6 23. Qb3 Re7 24. Bc2 Rde8 25. Qb2 Rxe1+ 26. Rxe1 Rxe1+ 27. Nxe1 Nb6
      28. a5 Nbd5 29. Nd3 Bc8 30. Nc5 Nf4 31. Bd1 Qd5 32. Bf3 Qg5 33. Kf1 N6d5 34.
      Nde4 Qe7 35. Nc3 Qd6 36. Bxd5 cxd5 37. Qd2 h5 38. h4 Kg7 39. Qe3 Ne6 40. g3 f6
      41. Ke1 Nc7 42. Kd2 Bg4 43. f3 Be6 44. Ne2 Bf7 45. g4 hxg4 46. fxg4 Be6 47. g5
      Bf5 48. gxf6+ Kxf6 49. Qg5+ Kf7 50. Qe3 Ne6 51. Qg3 Qxg3 52. Nxg3 Nxd4 53. Nxf5
      gxf5 54. Nxa6 Nc6 55. Nc7 Nxb4 56. Nxb5 Kg6 57. Nd4 Na6 58. Ke3 Nc5 59. Kf4
      Nd3+ 60. Ke3 Nb4 61. Kf4 Nd3+ 62. Kf3 Nb4 63. Ne2 Kf6 64. Nf4 d4 65. Ke2 Kf7
      66. Kd1 Kf6 67. Kd2 Kf7 68. Ne2 Kg6 69. Nxd4 f4 70. Ke2 Kh5 71. Kf3 Kxh4 72.
      Kxf4 Kh5 73. Ke5 Kg6 74. Kd6 Kf7 75. Kc5 Na6+ 76. Kb6 Nb4 77. Nc6 Nd5+ 78. Kb7
      Ke6 79. a6 Kd7 80. a7 Nc7 81. Ne5+ Kd8 82. Nc4 Na8 83. Nb6 Nc7 84. Kc6 1-0

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