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LCB, Issue #029 --, Plunge a Fork into Your Opponent's Plans
October 01, 2017

Fork Your Way to Victory

Lapoc Chess Board, Issue #029 -- Plunge a Fork into Your Opponent's Plans

learn and play online chess
Last month we dealt with the fascinating theme of the Exchange Sacrifice. It was shown that the apparent material deficit is not so relevant in situations where the minor piece is far more effective than the Rook.

This month we will look at probably the best known tactic in chess. The fork. Learn the patterns where you can create opportunities to hit your opponent between the eyes with this little goodie.

Always a material grabber, the fork can also rob the King of castling rights and can destroy pawn structures. Play through classic forking games this month and learn how to lay this trap with stealth.

Classic Forking Games

Morphy - Anderssen

Forks like all other tactics were the staple diet of masters during the Romantic Era in the 19th Century. Before the dawn of positional chess, it was proficiency in tactics alone that would separate the great from the merely good.

Adolf Anderssen was the best tactician around, equal in that discipline to anyone playing today. But while Morphy was no slouch either in the tactics department, he was one of the earliest players to demonstrate an understanding of positional strategy.

This gave him the ability to defend against the trickery of his adversaries. It also meant they were less able to withstand his combinations. Here Morphy utilizes a couple of different tactical shots to sink Anderssen including two forks. Morphy - Anderssen.

Euwe - Alekhine

The next game is a very well known game in chess history. It was played in the World Championship of 1935. The game itself is known as The Pearl of Zandvoort.

Alexander Alekhine was the great Russian master of the early 20th Century. He later ended up playing for France. He was defending his World Championship in Holland against the Dutchman Max Euwe. Alekhine believed he would easily win and did not prepare for the match in the right way.

He ultimately paid the price as Euwe stunned him to take the World Championship on the back of some brilliant performances. This win for Euwe with the White pieces sort of summed up the match. His Knight goes on a rampage around the board, moving nearly 20 times and causing the collapse in Black's position. The game ends with a decisive fork. Euwe - Alekhine.

Carlsen - Anand

In the final game, established chess titan and World Champion Vishy Anand came up against rising star Magnus Carlsen in a blitz tournament. Anand had a good record in blitz chess.

Carlsen traded a Bishop for a Knight and was able to win a central pawn. He later won another by decoying the White King out to h7 and winning back the Bishop with a fork. More were to follow.

As the tactical duel raged on, Carlsen was able to use two more forks to come through to a Rook and pawn endgame where he was a pawn ahead and Anand's pawns were weak. A formality at that level. Carlsen - Anand.

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