Don't leave the door open for the enemy

Chess Checks

Don't leave the door open for the enemy

The whole idea of castling in a game of chess is to provide a safe place for the king from where he cannot be attacked and checkmated. The pawns and the pieces have to ensure that there are no security breaches and that the gates leading towards the king should not be opened and those that are opened have to be heavily guarded.

In the game which follows, there is a heavy attack on Black’s kingside but Black loses the plot when he allows a crucial rook file to be opened. The White queen then infiltrates and with the help of other pieces drags the king into a checkmating net.
White: Sergei Tiviakov (2611) – Black: Joseph Ryan (2280)

Port Erin, 1999
French Defence
1.e4 e6
The French Defence
2.d4 d5 3.Nd2 Nf6 4.e5 Nfd7 5.c3 c5 6.Bd3 Nc6 7.Ne2 cxd4 8.cxd4
This is a very popular Opening variation in the French Defence
8. ..a5
Generally Black plays 8. ..Qb6 or even tries to take a break on the Kingside with 8. ..f6
9. 0–0 Nb6 10.f4
A bold pawn advance but here 10.N3 looks more appealing
10. ..g6
Black can think about either 10. ..Bd7 or 10. ..Be7
11.Nf3 h5
This pawn advance is prompted by the fact that White has already castled and Black declares his attacking intentions. But Black can hold on and develop 11…Bd7
12.Nc3 Bd7 13.a3 a4
Black can think of 13. ..Rc8
14.Bc2
White could have enhanced his advantage with 14.Qc2 Rg8 15.Qf2 Na5 16.Qg3
14...Be7
Previously played was 14...Ne7 15.Nh4 Bc6 16.Na2 Nf5 17.Nxf5 gxf5 leading to an unclear position.
15.Ng5 Ra5
Not one of the popular ways of getting the rook into action. Black can play 15...Kf8  or if 15...Na5 16.Nxa4 Bxa4 17.Bxa4+ Nxa4 18.Qxa4+ Nc6 with a slight advantage for White
16.Kh1 Na7
This knight retreat to change course does not look like a good idea. Black can castle 16. ..0-0  17.Rf3 x  18.fxg5 Ne7
17.Qd3
A good move!
17. ..Rg8
If 17. ..Bxg5  18.fxg5 0-0  19.Bd2
18.Qh3 Nb5 19.Ne2
Not interested in exchanging knights. If 19. Nxb5 Rxb5  20.Qd3 Qa8
19. ..Kf8
Not quite the right continuation. Black can think about retreating his awkwardly placed rook to 19. ..Ra8 .If 19...Nc4 20.g4 Rh8 (20...hxg4 21.Qh7 Rf8 22.Nxf7)  And if 19...Bxg5 20.fxg5 Nc4 21.g4 Rh8 22.gxh5 Rxh5 23.Qxh5 gxh5 24.g6
20.g4
An interesting as well as an aggressive move
Diagram 1
20. ..hxg4
Once again not quite the right response. Though the position is difficult for Black now he can think about 20. ..Qc8  or 20. ..Rh8. If 20...Kg7 21.gxh5 Rh8 22.h6+ Kf8 (22...Rxh6 23.Qxh6+ Kxh6 24.Nxf7+) 23.h7 Kg7 24.Nxf7
21.Qh6+
Immediately infiltrating through the open gate
21. ..Ke8
If 21...Rg7 22.Qh8+ Rg8 23.Nh7+ Ke8 24.Qxg8+ Bf8 25.Qxf8 checkmate
22.Qh7 Rf8 23.Nxf7 Qb8  24.Bxf7
If 23.Bxg6
23...Rxf7 24.Bxg6 Bc6 25.f5
If 25.f5 Kd7 26.fxe6+ Kc8 27.exf7
1–0
Diagram 2
White to play and checkmate
1.Rxg7+ Nxg7 2.Qf7+ Kh8 3.Qf8+ Rxf8 4.Rxf8 checkmate



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