Looking forward to chess club on Wednesday like I am? I appreciate the games, win or lose, as there is so much to learn from them. Where are your weaknesses? Your strengths? How are you at openings, midgame tactics and strategies, and the endgame? There is quite a bit of literature out there to help you with any of these elements.
Decorah Chess Club will meet at The Landing at 6pm, 3/2/2022. Come out to play, observe, and ask questions. We’ll be happy to see you!
Until then, here are a few studies in opportunities to gain some material.
Gains in Material
I had some time on Monday to solve several puzzles on the lichess app. There were a few I really enjoyed that fell in the category of material gains. In this first one, black has just moved the bishop from e7 to the f6 square. What is white’s move to gain material?
This one took me a long time, as I always look for checks and threats on the king first. If you still haven’t got it, here’s a hint: move the bishop.
Indeed, white’s winning move is Bc7 threatening both the queen and knight. Black’s queen cannot move anywhere threatening after that without being taken.
In this next one, black decides to deal with the check by interposing with her queen moving from c7 to f7.
Black is down in this position, even with the two pawn advantage. Can you see why?
Need a hint? One of your rooks should move.
If you found Rxe5 (the rook on e8 takes the knight), good job! While the pawn could take it, that would mean black would lose his queen (and knight) for the cost of two rooks. This would be a material gain for white.