Cornering is no easy way to victory

Chess Checks

However, even if pieces are forced to seek shelter at the corner of the chess boards, the opponent has to  exploit this factor to seek victory.

In the game which ensues one sees a strange sight with the Black queen almost imprisoned by his own pieces in the corner of the chess board. White should have punished this and cruised home to a victory but he fumbles and Black gets back into the game.

White: Sergey Zagrebelny (2521) – Black: Wolfgang Uhlmann (2461)]
Petermaennchen GM Schwerin,1999

The French Defence

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 The French defence3.Nd2 c5 4.exd5 exd5 5.Bb5+ Nc6 6.Ngf3 Bd6 7.dxc5 Bxc5 8.0–0 Nge7 9.Nb3 Bd6 10.h3 0–0 11.Re1 h6 12.c3 Nf5
Sticking perfectly to opening theory
 13.Bd3 Qf6 14.Bc2

If 14.Bd2 Bd7 15.Bf1 Rad8 16.g3 Bc7
 14...Rd8
If 14...Be6 15.Qd3 g6 16.g4 Bd7 17.Qd2 Ng7 18.Qxd5 Nb4 19.cxb4 Bc6
 15.Qd3 Bf8 Here Black makes a new move. If 15..g6 16.Bd2 a5 17.a4 b6 18.Be3
 16.Bf4 Fighting for control of the e5 square
 16. ..g6 17.Bc7 Rd7 18.Bh2 Rd8 19.Rad1 Be6 20.Ne5 Nfe7 21.Ng4  If  21.Nc5 Bc8
 21...Qh8 What a square to land on? One seldom comes across games in which the queen is so oddly positioned. If 21...Bxg4 22.hxg4 gives advantage to white 22.Qf3 Bg7 The queen is imprisoned by her own pieces

Diagram 1

 23.Nc5 Bxg4 24.hxg4
Worth a look is 24.Qxg4 b6 25.Nb7
 24...b6 25.Na6 White could also have thought about 25.Nb7 Rd7 26.Nd6 which works well for him
 25...Rac8 26.Bb3 Be5 27.Bxe5
White can consider 27.Nb4
 27...Nxe5 28.Qf4 f6 29.Nb4 The position has become very difficult for Black
 29...g5  At least now Black could have tried to get his queen out of the awkward position with 29. ..Qg7
 30.Qe4 The d pawn is pinned and hence cannot capture the queen
 30. ..Kg7 31.Nxd5 Nxd5 32.Rxd5 Rxd5 33.Bxd5 Qh7 34.Qd4
Going a bit astray! White could have exchanged queens with 34.Qxh7+ Kxh7 35.Rd1 which was simple
 34...Re8 35.Be4
Another wrong move! White should have played 35.Re4
 35...Qg8 36.b3 Rd8 37.Qa4 Qf7
At long last Black once again has a queen which is in the game
38.Bb1 Qb7 39.Bf5 Qc7 40.c4 Rd2 41.a3 a5
Black is a pawn down but slowly has managed to manoeuvre his pieces onto better squares
 42.Be6
A bad move which swings the game in Black’s favour. White should have continued 42.Qb5 Qc5 which would have maintained the balance to a certain extent
 42...Qe7 43.Rxe5
If 43.Bf5 Nf3+ And if 43.Bd5 Nf3+ 44.Bxf3 Qxe1+ 45.Kh2 Qxf2 46.Qe8 Qc5
 43...fxe5 44.Bd5 e4
A strong advance! The tables have changed and it is Black who is gunning for victory now!
 45.Qc6 e3 46.fxe3 Qxe3+ 47.Kh2
If 47.Kh1 Qe1+ 48.Kh2 Qh4+
 47...Qf4+ 48.Kh3 Rd3+ 49.Bf3 h5
If 49...Rxb3 50.Qd7+ Qf7 51.Qd4+ Kh7 52.Qe4+ Kg8
 50.Qb7+ Qf7
If 50...Kf6 51.Qc6+ (51.Qxb6+ Rd6 52.Qg1 hxg4+ 53.Bxg4 Rd4) 51...Rd6
 51.Qe4 hxg4+ 52.Kxg4 If 52.Qxg4 Qf4  52...Qf6 53.Kh5 If 53.Kh3 Rxb3  53...Qh6+ 54.Kg4 Qh4+ 55.Kf5 Qxe4+ 56.Bxe4 Rxb3 57.a4 Rb4 0–1

Diagram 2
White to play and win
  1.Rd8+ Kc7 2.Qxf4 Rxf4 3.Rxh8 Rf1+ 4.Ka2 and White wins.

 Diagram 1  Diagram 2

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