Back to Back Issues Page
LCB, Issue #049 --, Capitalize on Mistakes for a Fast Finish
June 01, 2019

Capitalize on Mistakes for a Fast Finish

Lapoc Chess Board, Issue #049 -- GOTM #18

learn and play online chess
Lets take in a modern miniature from Moscow in 2010. Two of the leading players of the new generation of Russian chess square up in a blitz competition. The game promises to be a fight.

White chooses the English Opening and the opening takes an interesting turn when Black decides to fianchetto his King's Bishop.

White immediately sets his sights on the weakened dark squares and what should have been a routine opening turns into a narrow corridor fraught with danger. Can Black negotiate his way to a playable middlegame or will White induce an error with his challenging early thrusts?

Capitalize on Mistakes for a Fast Finish

Andreikin, D (2683) - Karjakin, S (2760)[A27]

GotM #18 - Moscow, 2010
[Connaughton, Ken]


English Opening


Reversed Sicilian

2.Nc3 Nc6 3.Nf3 g6

Game position after 3...g6

Black wants to put his Bishop on the long diagonal, this decision colors the direction of the game as White reacts accordingly.

4.d4 exd4 5.Nd5

This is the only real alternative to the Main Line. White hopes to put pressure on Black by attacking his weaknesses on the dark squares.

(5.Nxd4 Main Line)


(5...Nf6 6.Bg5 Be7 7.Bh6 Williams, Simon; 5...Nce7 6.Qxd4 Williams, Simon; 5...Nge7 6.Nf6# Williams, Simon)


The plan continues, will it effect Black's cohesion as he develops?


Game position after 6...Nge7?

Black was walking a tightrope and needed to continue with accuracy. This is his first major slip and starts the downward spiral. He had two playable options in 6...Nce7 and 6...Nf6, anything else leads to big trouble quick.

(6...Nce7 7.Nxd4 Williams, Simon; 6...Nf6 7.Nxd4 Williams, Simon; 6...f6 7.Bf4 d6 8.Nxd4 Williams, Simon)


White regains his pawn and apparently leaves a piece hanging, or does he?


Black takes the Knight and the threat to his e7-Knight seems to be covered. It seems like White has no way to expose an overworked piece.

(7...Nxd4 8.Bxe7 Williams, Simon)


Game position after 8.Qxd4!

The big idea. The Queen sacrifice wins the game either way.


Attempting to shore up but the loss of his key defender, the dark square Bishop will be his undoing and soon. The position was lost in any case but castling means it's # in 5.

(8...Nxd4 9.Nf6+ Kf8 10.Bh6# Williams, Simon)

9.Nf6+ Kh8 10.Ng4+

Game position after 10.Ng4+

Black resigns.

(10.Ng4+ Kg8 (10...f6 11.Bxf6+ Rxf6 12.Qxf6+ Kg8 13.Nh6#; 10...Nxd4 11.Bf6+ Kg8 12.Nh6#) 11.Nh6# Williams, Simon)


Andreikin - Karjakin (Moscow, 2010)

If you do not have html based email software and you're using a text only system, you may find that the links are only partially highlighted and may not work. If this is the case, simply copy and paste the entire link into the browser and hit Enter. That should get you where you want to go.
Comments, ideas, feedback? I'd be stoked to hear from you.

Get in touch

See you next month.


Back to Back Issues Page