Connecting rooks vital for success

Connecting rooks vital for success

Chess Checks

Connecting rooks vital for success

Generally by mid-game stages, if both the rooks are not connected, it spells big trouble. It also means that a player is facing developmental problems which generally is because of opening mishandling or the surprise factor in the form of a novelty.

In the game which follows Black is severely hampered by development problems and almost till the end of the game his rooks don’t enter the warfare while his light squared bishop is also languishing on the original square till the ending stages. What is interesting to note is that till the end of the game both of Black’s rooks are still on the original squares.

White: Evgeny Vorobiov (2475) – Black: Andrei Gutov (2250)
Russian Club Cup, Maikop, 1998
Caro-Kann Defence
1.e4 c6
The Caro-Kann Defence
2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nd7 5.Ng5
White can develop his knight or bishop rather than moving his knight twice
5. ..Ngf6 6.Bd3 e6 7.N1f3 Bd6 8.Qe2 h6
This has been played before
 9.Ne4 Nxe4 10.Qxe4 Qc7
Black can play 10. ..Qe7
11.Qg4 Kf8
Black cannot castle as 11. ..0-0 then 12.Bxh6
12.0–0 c5 13.Re1 b6
If 13...c4 14.Bf1 b5 15.a4 b4 16.b3 c3 17.Ne5 Nxe5
If 14.b3 Nf6 15.Qh4 Bb7 16.Ne5 And if 14.Ne5 cxd4 15.Ng6+ (15.Qf3 Bxe5 16.Qxa8 Bxh2+ 17.Kf1 Bd6) 15...fxg6 16.Qf3+ Nf6 17.Qxa8 Bxh2+ 18.Kh1 Kf7 19.Qf3 Bd6 was played in a previous game
If 14...Bxc5 15.Bf4 Bd6 16.Bxd6+ Qxd6 17.Rad1 and Black has problems since he is lagging in development.
15.Bd2 Nxd3
15...Bb7 16.Bc3 Rg8 17.Bh7And if  15...e5 16.Bf5 e4 17.Bc3 And if 15...f5 16.Qh4 and White with his development complete, is better
16.cxd3 Be7
Black is hampered by developmental problems, especially as both his rooks are unable to enter the game while the light square bishop also does not have any prominent square to move to, leaving him in trouble.
If  16...Bb7 17.Bc3 Rg8 18.Be5 Rc8 19.Qf4 And if 16...e5 17.Qh5 (17.Qh4 Bb7 18.Rac1 Qd8 19.Qxd8+ Rxd8 20.Nxe5 Bxe5 21.Rxe5 Rd7) 17...g6 18.Qh4 (18.Bxh6+ Kg8 19.Qg5 Bb7) 18...Kg7 19.Rac1 Qd8 20.Bxh6
White had a stronger move in 17.Rac1 Qd8  18.Ne5 .
The other option is 17.Bc3 Bf6  18.Rac1 Qd8
17. ..Bf6
It almost appears as if Black is playing without his rooks and hardly has choice in moving his pieces. If 17...Bb7 18.Qf4 Bd6 19.Bb4 and white continues to remain better
18.Rac1 Qd8 19.Qf3
White also had good moves like 19.Qe4 or 19.Qh5 to keep up the advantage
19. .. Ba6
In his desperation to get the bishop into the game, Black misses the continuation to force the exchange of queens to get some respite after 19. ..Qd5  20.Qxd5 exd5 21.Rc7 Be6
20.Nd7+ Ke7
A blunder in a position which was already bad. Black could have tried 20...Qxd7 21.Qxa8+ And if 20...Kg8 21.Nxf6+ gxf6 22.Qg3+ Kh7 23.Rc7 w
21.Bb4+ And Black decided to resign rather than prolong the agony after 21.Bb4+ Kxd7 22.Qc6 checkmate.

Diagram 1


Diagram 2

White to play and checkmate
Sacrificing the queen
1..Rxh7 2.Rg8+ Rxg8 3.Rxg8 checkmate.