Tuesday King Hunts with GM Saptarshi Roy Parts IV & V
The Tuesday King Hunts series, where Grandmaster Saptarshi Roy analysed some very instructive attacking play through a series of five videos, came to an end on the 8th of last month. In this write-up we review and give a gist of parts IV and V of the same. The penultimate part of the series featured a Semi-Slav brilliancy by the ever imaginative Vadim Zvjaginsev, while in the final lecture Saptarshi covered one of his own tournament encounters against GM Laxman Rajaram. The one obvious thing common in both games was Black launching an unstoppable attack and finishing off the party with an elaborate, spectacular chase of the white king! If you are a fan of tactical and dynamic chess then this article is just for you.
A Zvjaginsev Masterclass!
The Russian Grandmaster Vadim Zvjaginsev has always been known for his tactical and often outlandish aggressive play. In the 1995 Wijk Aan Zee Open, he played a strikingly attacking game against Roberto Cifuentes with black pieces that has since come to be known as the pearl of Wijk Aan Zee. In part IV of the Tuesday King Hunts series GM Saptarshi Roy gives us a move by move analysis of all the intricacies of this famous encounter and also poses insightful questions at the various critical moments during the discussion. So without further ado let's dive in!
Roberto Cifuentes - Vadim Zvjaginsev, Wijk Aan Zee Open 1995
Well, in the game, 15.Nh4 g6 16.Bh6 Rfe8 17.Qd2 Bd6 18.g3 b5 was played and it started becoming apparent at this point that although White had more space and a strong pawn on d5, it was Black who had a clear way to make progress. Quite simply moves like b5-b4, Ne4, and Ndf6 followed by Rad8 and Rfe8 would give him a strong grip on the central squares; while White would be lacking a definite plan and a definite target to hit at.
After 26.Kxe3 Ng4+ 27.Kf3 Nxh2+ 28.Kf2 Ng4+ 29.Kf3 Black once again stunned with 29...Qe6! exploiting the pin on a8-h1 diagonal - the bishop on b7 too was participating in the attack after all!
This marked the beginning of a picturesque king chase with 32.Bxe3 Rxe3+ 33.Kxg4 Bc8+ 34.Kg5 h6+ 35.Kxh6 and the hapless white monarch was dragged all the way to h6!
Listen to GM Saptarshi Roy explaining the nuances of this game in the following video:
In the next game (part V of the series) we see how to draw a positional player into ticky tactical waters! GM Saptarshi Roy shows one of his own games against GM Laxman Rajaram who is very well-known to be a solid positional player. This encounter began with 1.Nf3 and here Saptarshi invited White to play the Sicilian with 1...c5 which, to his surprise, his opponent accepted without much reluctance.
Laxman Rajaram - Saptarshi Roy, 1st ONGC Cup Hyderabad 2006
The game followed 15.Rxe5 Ng4!? 16.Re4 Qxh2+ and here a dangerous position was reached. Black had both g4 and c6 hanging and he couldn't defend both. After 17.Kf1 Qh1+ 18.Ke2 Black was losing a piece.
Saptarshi went ahead with 18...0-0 here because he had to bring his rooks out and ensure his king's safety and only then could he think of exploiting White's vulnerabilities which was was obviously his king open in the center.
Saptarshi started a vicious king hunt here with 24...Re6+ 25.Kf4 g5+ 26.Kxg5 Qd5+ 27.Kg4 Rg6+ 28.Kf4 Qg5+ 29.Kf3 Qxh4 and seized his lost material back with a winning position. In only the next three moves White was caught in an inescapable mating net and had to call it a day!
Now listen to GM Saptarshi Roy - the man himself - explaining his own brilliant win!
We believe you got to learn a lot from the Tuesday King Hunts series. If you have any feedback for these videos or would like to get in touch with GM Saptarshi Roy, you can do so by writing to him on his email: firstname.lastname@example.org