Thursday, September 20, 2007

Board Visualisation Problems

The morning after.... I logged onto FICS. And played a few games.

I think I am having OTB visualisation problems. For some reason yesterday, I couldn't calculate deeper variations.

But after a few games on FICS, I realise that I do see variations much deeper than I thought.

Take a look for example this position.

I am Black (board has been flipped). Pieces are just about equal. A quick scan on the board tells me 2 things.

White is suffering from weaknesses on the pawn f4 and the square b4. Now a plan started to form in my head.

Loading the game in Fritz shows that Fritz naturally wants to take the pawn on f4 immediately. However, I realised that the pawn is going nowhere and cannot be adequately defended (g3 leads to Bxh3 - fatally weakening White's kingside so I'm in no rush to take it).

What I do want is prepare an adequate defence and prepare an attack. Before I do that, I need to restructure my forces.

My Queen on d6 is doing diddly squat. What I want is to move my Queen to another location where it can adequately defend the a and b pawn. The problem is: if my Queen moves, I've left a gap in square e7 so I first proceed to plug the gap.

23... Bf8
24. Qe3? Qc7 {Not sure what White is doing here - I looked briefly at that White might want to do a c pawn storm to break through the queenside defence but I found nothing so I continue my plan and relocate my Queen}
25. c4 Bd6 {Now my setup is complete}
26. c5 {too little too late} Bxf4
27. Qf2? Bh2+ {I felt this check was necessary as I want to force the King to h1}
28. Kh1 Bg3 {now to drive away the Queen}
29. Qf6 b5
30. axb5 {see second diagram} cxb5
31. Qa6? {this move surprised me but White has to do something about the b5 pawn} a4 {threatening the Knight}
32. Nd2 {forced} Qf4
33. Nf3 Qc1+ {0-1 White resigns as it cannot stop mate}

I'm not overly happy with this game but the game shows that I can come up with a plan and execute it. But why didn't I see any of this yesterday? Frankly, I'm frustrated.

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