-3

In the below position, black is about to play 1... Bf5, developing the bishop to eventually play Nd7-Nb6.

a) Is 2. Nh4 a threat?

b) In the game Karpov-Kasparov, White played 2. 0-0 (after 1... Bf5) Nd7 3. h3 Nb6 4. g4 Bd7. Should Karpov have played 2. h3 instead?

rnb1r1k1/pp3pbp/6p1/q1pP4/8/2P1BN2/P2QBPPP/2R1K2R b K - 2 13

2 Answers 2

1

a) Is 2. Nh4 a threat?

No, because black can play 2. .. Be4 which makes the knight on h4 look a bit silly. Note that 3. f3 does not work because of 3. ... Bxd5 and if 4. Qxd5 Rxe3

b) In the game Karpov-Kasparov, White played 2. 0-0 (after 1... Bf5) Nd7 3. h3 Nb6 4. g4 Bd7. Should Karpov have played 2. h3 instead?

Probably it would lead to the same position since white will certainly want to castle sooner or later and black does not have many alternatives either.

Why do you think Karpov should have played 2. h3?

4
  • First, 2. Nh4 Be4 3. c4 Qxd2 4. Kxd2. Secondly, 2. h3 with the threat of 3. g4, which prevents 2... Nd7. Commented Oct 20, 2017 at 20:16
  • 1
    @JossieCalderon: First 4. ...Bf6 should save the bishop on e4 from being caught. Secondly: How does 2. h3 prevent 2...Nd7? After 3. g4 black can still play 3...Be4, no? Commented Oct 20, 2017 at 23:57
  • Yeah, then White has won the bishop pair. How has this improved Black's position? And secondly, 4. 0-0 and White has no complications. Commented Oct 21, 2017 at 1:20
  • 1
    Firstly, I have no idea why this answer was downvoted to begin with. Secondly, @JossieCalderon, 1...Bf5 2.h3 Nd7 3.g4?! Be4 4.0-0 c4! and suddenly white finds it awkward to deal with the threat of ...Bxd5, since 5.Bxc4?? just drops the knight on f3. And note that if white instead goes 4.c4 then black just trades queens: 4...Qxd2+ 5.Kxd2 b5!, and white's king is left quite exposed. This is why 0-0 has to be played before the push g2-g4: white wants to answer ...Be4 with c4, and wants to recapture on d2 with the knight.
    – Scounged
    Commented Oct 21, 2017 at 13:03
1

Of course it is absolutely playable -- Kasparov played it against Karpov! 2...h3 doesn't improve for White as the comments have noted. As for Nh4 -- you are misplacing the Knight, besides Be4, Black could even play Bd7-b5.

16
  • Just because a grandmaster plays a move against another grandmaster does not mean it is playable. Anand played 26. a4?? in a game against Carlsen. Commented Oct 22, 2017 at 0:28
  • These aren't just 2 GMs, they are two world champions at the top of their games. Sure, even the best blunder, but this position is likely still in Kasparov's preparation.
    – Ywapom
    Commented Oct 22, 2017 at 0:44
  • Check out the No True Scotsman's Fallacy. Commented Oct 23, 2017 at 4:32
  • @JossieCalderon Not sure what this answer has to do with the No True Scotsman's Fallacy. Are you sure that you're not referring to the Appeal to Authority Fallacy, which I'd agree this answer is an example of.
    – Scounged
    Commented Oct 23, 2017 at 18:14
  • @Scounged Originally Ywapom appealed to authority when he implied this move is playable because a grandmaster played it. Then the No True Scotsman fallacy was invoked when he mentioned these weren't just any grandmasters - these were world champions! Commented Oct 24, 2017 at 0:58

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.