September '00 Update
In terms of popularity, the Ruy Lopez is the undisputed king of all the openings stemming from 1 e4 e5. So, as we celebrate the first anniversary of the launch of chesspublishing.com, it's quite appropriate that this month's update material contains a record amount of games featuring "the Lopez". Read on, and enjoy!
The e-pawn emperor's next e4-e5 'monthly update' will be posted on this Internet site towards the end of October, and in the meantime he will, as always, reply personally to as many e-mail messages as possible which come to MrMo@ChessPublishing.com. Right now, though, there's a tasty new collection of fresh games, puzzles, and other treats to bring you endless hours of enjoyment in a mega bumper-size September update. So let's swiftly move up a gear or two to tackle the first challenge coming rapidly towards us...
The game between GM Jean-Marc Degraeve and IM Harmen Jonkman on September 3 at the Mondariz Zonal Tournament in Spain opened with the Centre Game 1 e4 e5 2 d4 exd4 3 Qxd4, and reached the following position after White's nineteenth move:
Although Black is a piece down, he now came up with a killing move which you too are invited to find.
A solution will appear in the next 'update' on this site at the end of October.
The brainteaser was as follows:
The game between Henrik Hansen and Lars Grahn on July 25 at Copenhagen's Politiken Cup tournament opened with the Philidor Defence, and reached the following position after Black's ninth move:
(i) Can you discover the preceding nine moves of the game (in a sensible move-order)?
(ii) Can you see why the move 10 Nxd5? (which White now played) loses?
(i) The opening moves were 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 d6 3 d4 exd4 4 Nxd4 g6 5 Nc3 Bg7 6 Be3 Nf6 7 h3?! (7 f3 is a much better way to stop ...Ng4, because it also supports White's central e4-pawn) 7...0-0 8 Qd2 Re8 9 f3 (White could instead be getting castled queenside here if he had played 7 f3 in place of 7 h3 a couple of moves ago) 9...d5! (Denmark's Finn Andersen, a keen player of Correspondence Chess, recently wrote to me saying that he reckoned the counter-punch ...d5 in Philidor's Defence can very often cause big problems for opponents, especially if they are of less than GM strength- and in the current game we're about to see White collapsing immediately with...
(ii) 10 Nxd5?, losing instantly to 10...Nxd5 11 exd5 Bh6! (ouch, White's pinned e3-bishop is really hurting!) 12 Ne6 Bxe3 13 Qxe3 Qxd5 0-1.
This regular feature puts the spotlight on a player of the past or present whose birthday was or still is a day in the current month. For example, super-GM Zbynek Hracek (born on 09.09.1970) of the Czech Republic is a truly world-class 'September birthday' player, and for our game G13.43 I've chosen his stunning 26-move victory over Oleg Romanov at Pardubice 1998.
Would YOU like to star in The Birthday Game? If so, please send an e-mail to MrMo@ChessPublishing.com sometime between the 1st and 15th day of the month preceding your birthday month, and include the following information to be considered by Mr Mo: your name, date & place of birth, and one of your own games starting with 1 e4 e5 (or another acceptable move-order such as 1 e4 Nc6 2 Nf3 e5 or 1 e4 d6 2 d4 Nf6 3 Nc3 e5). Although annotations are not strictly necessary (since Mr Mo will always analyse the game too), your own personal notes would certainly be most welcomed. Please do mention where and when the game was played, and also state the players' names (together with ratings, if applicable).
Don't be shy-let us celebrate YOUR birthday too!
By the way, since James Bond is about the same age as myself- we both 'arrived on the scene' in 1962, as my delivery doctor knows like 007's Dr No!- I'll conclude this section with 'Happy Birthday' in 007 different languages that I've had at least some exposure to:
Happy Birthday (English)
Shengri kuai le (Mandarin)
Heureux Anniversaire (French)
Gelukkig Verjaardag (Dutch)
Herzliche Wünsche zum Geburtstag (German)
Buon Compleanno (Italian)
Special thanks to Finn Andersen, Igor Lakovic, Rod McShane, Patrick Suberville, and Richard Wing, all of whom recently sent me very useful information which certainly enhances the quality of this e4-e5 Internet site.
This twelfth update (after the previous launch material) is dedicated to Rod McShane, who provided me with lots of useful information plus a fabulous photo which can be seen in the Hero of the Month section..
Tons of fresh mouth-watering goodies await us, including a king-size helping of Ruy Lopez games in the septet G13.43, G13.44, G13.45, G13.46, G13.47 G13.48, and G13.49 where you'll also find other handy supplementary bonuses. In the midst of all that excitement, our Hero of the Month is the special star of G13.46.
If you can't sleep after so much drama, then the Two Knights Defence of G12.17
will keep you entertained into the (k)night!!
In general, the action-packed battles are made even more irresistible by the presence of related challenging puzzles, which can also be seen in the section called "Puzzle Paradise".
And the feast is still far from over yet...! Further courses include the very select stimulating material that appears in the Reflection Zone, but only subscribers can access that section and all the juicy annotated games too.
It's a personal choice, but for me four of the Most Outstanding Moves from the games within this month's update material are:- Alexei Shirov's shocking 13...Bf5!! in G4.24; Zbynek Hracek's 21 Nf5! that instantly turned the sky black for Black in G13.43; Joose Norri's 19...Rh3! rook sacrifice which more than rocked the opponent in G13.47; and the stunning 23 Nd6!! that floored a GM rated 2598 in G4.25.
The key idea here is that (although in general we focus on recent happenings) it still pays off to study some memorable older material. For instance, Finland's Joose Norri produces a really beautiful win for Black against the Ruy Lopez in G13.47, whereas our Hero of the Month is equally devastating on the White side of G13.46, and another quick 1-0 result also befalls the Two Knights Defence in G12.17. Those encounters actually happened years ago, but these games being selected again now are still highly instructive (and entertaining too!).
Our Hero of the Month, IM Luke McShane, was born in 1984. Can you name the grandmaster who that year won the British Championship for his first time? Also, can you name the former World Chess Champion who passed away in the same year? An answer will appear in next month's 'update', but meanwhile enjoy all the goodies awaiting you now on this site...
The puzzle was as follows:
Our Hero of the Month, IM Stephen Mannion, has a Christmas Eve birthday- just like former World Champion Dr Emanuel Lasker born exactly 96 years earlier. Nowadays, many modern players study Informator- which began in 1966- but Lasker had passed on well-before then. However, supposing he had lived until 24.12.1966, he would then have been 49 times older than Stephen Mannion! Your puzzle is to figure out how many times older than Stephen Mannion would Emanuel Lasker have been if he had lived until their mutual birthday in the year when Bobby Fischer became World Chess Champion.
There are various ways of working this one out, but the easiest is to make use of the extra facts that Stephen Mannion and Dr Emanuel Lasker were born in 1964 and 1868 respectively (as was given in the August Hero of the Month section). So, shortly after Bobby Fischer became World Chess Champion in 1972, Stephen Mannion was only eight on 24 December that year, whereas Emanuel Lasker would then have been 104 (if still alive)- that's 13 times young Stephen's age!
The previous launch and update material laid the foundations for further enjoyable adventures with 1 e4 e5 as our chosen starting point. So, as we celebrate the first anniversary of the launch of ChessPublishing.com, we could have no better or happier motto than the phrase "Chess is fun"- the lovely way in which our current Hero of the Month once summed up the Royal Game.
The title sounds like a James Bond assignment, but it's actually much less dangerous! At the special request of subscriber Livio Olivetto, from July 2000 onwards all new main or complete games on this e4-e5 site have been labelled with an ECO code from the range C20-C99, to match the particular opening variations featured. The codes provide an extra means of identifying games containing one's own favourite opening lines, and so the codes are being given in the Index of New Games. Some people may like to construct, for their own personal use, a complete index of games according to ECO codes, but since I know that many readers would find its appearance to be rather abstract, I shall leave it as a project to be done at home only by people who are really big fans of ECO codes!
Main games have ECO code labels associated with their particular opening lines.
(bold indicates that the player had White)