(photo: Karel van Delft)
Max Euwe Square, in the heart of Amsterdam, prepares for the Christmas and New Year festivities. Giant illuminated chess pieces are hanging on top of the pubs and cafes there. Here I enjoy this cheerful view just before entering Casino Holland where the presentation of our new book De Loper took place last night. A lovely decoration to the series of books on the different pieces!
Posted: December 13 - 2013
The Agile Bishop in Action
The fourth part of the Dutch series by your truly and Hans Böhm is just out: “Wij presenteren De Loper” (We present the Bishop) young brother to De Pion, De Toren and Het Paard. Following an historic review of the piece in question, the special qualities of the Bishop are demonstrated through 60 instructive chapters, comprising four examples each. The 240 positions are derived from the very best of over the board practice as well as from the fine art of the endgame study. This was Bobby Fischer’s favourite piece and four of his most memorable combinations were highlighted by magnificent bishop sacrifices and they can be found in the book alongside the masterpieces of other world champions. Other classics of the greats display typical Bishop Manoeuvres such as the Greek gift, the Boden mate and the double bishop sacrifice to name just a few. A number of chapters show the agile Bishop successfully coping with any of the enemy pieces, including the mighty queen or even with a pair of rooks. A great deal of the examples are classical endgame studies by the best composers of all time, demonstrating paradoxical motives such as the “wrong” bishops and opposite colour bishops winning against all odds and despite material inferiority. Various examples deal with the unique geometric traits of the Bishop in the battle on crucial diagonals, symmetry and asymmetry, the struggle against promotion. Other chapters display the role of the Bishop in more common topics such as stalemates, fortresses, underpromotions, zugzwangs, positional draws, perpetual check and systematic manoeuvres. The closing chapters display the smiling Bishops in chess jokes and funny puzzles and for the first time a couple of curious Bishop Moves from the practice of the …authors!
All examples in the book are presented for solving too; training and enjoying are offered for the same price even for those among us who cannot read Dutch as chess is in fact a universal language.
Posted: December 11 - 2013
An Invisible Escape
My game against Frank Erwich from the last round of Eijgenbrood tournament reached the following charged position:
White to play
The game continued 42.Qxe2 Rxe2 43.Bxg6 hxg6 44.Rh4 Rd2! and Black eventually converted the Rook ending. Later on, in home analysis with the help of the silicon monster, I discovered a fantastic salvation line for White in the diagram position. Give it a decent try before checking the solution in the PGN file.
Posted: December 2 - 2013
IM David Klein (black) versus IM Merijn van Delft. See also a short video.
A Weekend in North Holland
The HWP club in the city of Haarlem has celebrated its 75th anniversary in a series of attractive events. The celebrations were concluded last weekend in a strong blitz tournament in which I took part and was lucky to win the senior prize. The final standings may be seen here:
On Sunday I visited the traditional Cultural Village tournament which was played for the first time in a rapid format and took place in café De Zon in Wijk aan Zee. My pupil IM David Klein was the highest rated participant and indeed emerged the unbeaten outright winner.
Results and games may be watched here:
David, a rather busy student in the University of Leiden, has recently been awarded with the GM title provided he will cross the 2500 Elo barrier. He still needs 9 rating points which he hopes to score already in Groningen open later this month. The victory in WAZ seems like a decent warming up.
Posted: December 2 - 2013
Among my various studies published last year the following was especially tactical:
The German fine composer and devoted promoter Martin Minski was inspired by the punch line and came up with a very interesting logical version. I was flattered by his co-authorship proposal and the joint study was then sent to the 3rd tourney of Maroc Echecs.
A premiere in Morocco for me as well as a pleasant tourney victory. The instructive award of the judge Richard Becker may be seen here:
Posted: November 30 - 2013