Self Inflicted Wounds (3)

I no longer have any fear of pain because I’m the one inflicting it and can decide when it stops.
Maude Julien, The Only Girl in the World

History repeats itself with new actors if its lessons are not learned. Lately we have been going over the Greek gift sacrifice with the purpose to know it well. At the beginning of the first lesson a few recognized it from seeing it on the internet. When I asked a few questions about it, I got the usual generalities. Those did not help much to solve the first practice puzzle. After getting our feet wet, one of my students remembered allowing it in one of his games from the last tournament he played. It is not a pretty sight:

White’s light square bishop targets the h7-pawn in many positions. Observation: all I mention applies in the mirror to Black’s dark square bishop and the h2-pawn. It is important to understand the position properly. Sacrificing the bishop works only if certain conditions are met. Players are normally very cautious to protect against any attack on their king; still more often than one would expect, the sacrifice is possible. Replay below game and compare white’s attack with the one above:

The similarities of the two positions are:

  • The pawns in front of Black’s king side have not moved
  • The h7-pawn is defended only by the ling
  • The g5-square is not defended
  • One rook can join the attack fast

For more details about the Greek gift sacrifice, please read again a past article from here

Eugen Demian

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Valer Eugen Demian

Author: Valer Eugen Demian

The player – my first serious chess tournament was back in 1974, a little bit late for today’s standards. Over the years I have had the opportunity to play all forms of chess from OTB to postal, email and server chess. The journey as a player brought me a lot of experience and a few titles along the way: FIDE CM (2012), ICCF IM (2001) and one ICCF SIM norm (2004). The instructor – my career as a chess teacher and coach started in 1994 and continues strong. I have been awarded the FIDE Instructor title (2007) for my work and have been blessed with great students reaching the highest levels (CYCC, NAYCCC, Pan-Am, WYCC). I am very proud of them! See my website for more information. I have developed my own chess curriculum on 6 levels based on my overall chess knowledge and hands-on experience. A glimpse of it can be seen in my first chess app:
I can help you learn chess the proper way if this is what you seek! View all posts by Valer Eugen Demian

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