The Soul of chess – Part 2

I would like to show you some wonderful positions , where pawns decide the outcome of the whole game!

Optueta – Sanz, Madrid 1934.

Black to move…
And it doesn’t look very dangerous for white .The pawn on b2 is protected…The bishop on b6 looks passive But a passed pawn may become so dangerous….And a knight is not the best piece to stop the passed pawns…


Black sacrificed a full ROOK! Only to advance an isolated pawn!

2.Nb2 c3!

OK How to stop it now? 3.Nd3 then c4+! And cd, Nc4 doesn’t help as well due to c2!

3. Rb6!

Only answer for a while looks very bad for black c2 just Nd3! But


Still not possible are Nd3 or Nc4 . But black’s idea is to play c2 on the next move! The only chance is


Looks that it’s white – who is winning! But here comes the point!


Three isolated pawns are winning against rook and knight!

If 5.Rb7 just c2! Losing as well is 5.Kf2 ab! Then is c2- unstoppable! And last, if 5. Rc4 then cb!  .. From the starting position it’s very difficult to dream about the final one, isn’t it?

Now lets see some openings when a pawn has decide the game! Here’s a very rare variation of the Caro- Kann defence.

1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 de 4. Ne4 Nf6 5.Ng3? h5! 6. Bg5 h4 7.Bf6 hg! 8. Be5

 is the only move. Now Black decides the game with the brilliant tactical shot…

8… Rh2! 9. Rh2 Qa5! 10. c3 


Getting rid of the  h2 square defender, allowing Black pawn to finish the Queens journey!

11. de gh

and the pawn will be a Queen!

Razuvaev- Kupreichik , Dubna 1970

1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.Nf3 f5 4.d4 e4 5. Bg5 Nf6 6.d5? ef 7. dc fg

Here White decided to play an intermediate move..

 winning back a pawn , which looks fairly good …

Razuvaev was very surprised after black’s shocking answer…..

8… Nd7!!  

White loses at least a piece! 

Hope you enjoyed !




3 Responses

  1. those were awesome!

  2. You are Welcome !

  3. Thank you, again. The step by step approach with diagrams keeps me thinking and visualizing without using a board. My old brain really needs the work!

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