“All men can see these tactics whereby I conquer, but what none can see is the strategy out of which victory is evolved.”
These days we are enjoying some great games at the 2023 Rugby World Cup from France. One such game was Fiji – Australia 22-15, the first win by the Flying Fijians over their neighbors in 69 years. It is inspiring for sure. Also, it gave me the idea to look into the chess reality in Fiji. Their chess players are not as powerful as their rugby counterparts. However, one can learn a thing or two from their games.
Kieran Lyons has been Fiji’s top female player for a long time. She has participated in a number of chess Olympiads, and has scored well. In the game below, we see a nice approach to the very sharp and well known Fried Liver Attack. It could serve as a very nice example on how to play it as White for a club level player.
After winning a pawn rather easily in the opening, Kieran used a pin to develop her pieces with tempo. After the pin was of no use anymore, she concluded that a series of exchanges would bring her into an easily won endgame. It was the correct decision. There was no need to look for any fancy attacks to blow up Black’s position. Sometimes many players forget that simple play, is best play.
When they reached the endgame, White’s extra pawn and better pawn structure were sufficient for a comfortable win. The fact White had a knight for a bishop with pawns on both sides, was less important. Again, it is nice to see how White continued to play simple yet effective, inching closer to victory. Once the King and pawns endgame appeared on the board, the writing was on the wall. A very nice, clean game by Kieran. May you play many of these!