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Menadue Makes It (09.04.2016.)

Jeremy Menadue of Truro won the Grading Prize at the recent West of England Congress and also qualified for the British Championship, due in no small measure to this last round win.

The opening is named after the Hungarian, Richard Reti (1889 – 1929) who was a pioneer of the “Hypermodern” school of chess theory after WWI. The need for control of the centre of the chessboard is paramount, but whereas the 19th century “Romantics” believed this was only possible through occupation of the central squares with pawns supported by pieces, these conventional ideas broke down after the Great War, in chess much the same as in many other areas of the Arts. The Hypermoderns were happy to cede the centre in the opening, and then undermine it from the flanks. A new idea that caught on and is still with us, being by far the most popular opening amongst today’s top players, though it didn’t do much good for White in this game.

White: Graham Bolt (187). Black: J. F. S.  Menadue (187).

Reti Opening [A07]

1.g3 d5 2.Bg2 Nf6 3.d3 c6 4.Nf3 Bf5 5.0–0 e6 6.Nbd2 h6 7.Re1 Be7 8.b3 0–0 9.Bb2 Nbd7 10.e4 dxe4 11.dxe4 Bh7 12.Qe2 Qc7 13.h3 Rfd8 14.e5 Nd5 15.Ne4 a5 16.c4 Nb4 17.a3 Na6 18.Qe3 Bxe4 19.Qxe4 Ndc5 20.Qc2 Nd3 21.Red1 Nxb2 22.Qxb2 Qb6 23.Bf1 Nc5 24.Rxd8+ Rxd8 25.Rb1 Ne4 The start of a concerted attack against f2. 26.b4 axb4 27.axb4 Rd2! 28.Qxd2 The least worst option. If 28.c5 Rxb2 and White’s rook is left hanging. 28…Nxd2 29.Nxd2 Qd4 30.Nf3 Qe4 31.Rb3 g6 32.c5 Kg7 33.Kg2 Qc2 34.Rd3 Qb2 35.Rd7 Kf8 36.Rxb7?? White had to defend his b-pawn with 36.Rd4 36…Bxc5! A variation of the earlier attack on f2. White cannot now avoid mate, after 37…Qxf2+ 38.Kh1 Qxf3+ 39.Kh2 Qf2+ 40.Kh1 Qg1 mate. 0–1.

This 2nd round game involved castling on opposite sides of the board, which usually involves a race to attack.

White: J. Fallowfield. Black: J. Rudd.

1.d4 d6 2.e4 Nf6 3.f3 c6 4.c4 e5 5.d5 g6 6.Be3 Bg7 7.Nc3 0–0 8.Qd2 a6 9.0–0–0 Qa5 10.Kb1 c5 11.g4 b5 12.h4 h5 13.Bh6 Nbd7 14.Bxg7 Kxg7 15.Qg5 Rh8 16.Rc1 hxg4 17.h5 Rxh5 18.Rxh5 Nxh5 19.fxg4 f6 20.Qh4 Nf4 21.g5 fxg5 22.Qxg5 Nf6 23.Nge2 Nd3 24.Rc2 Ne1 25.Ng3 Nxc2 26.Nf5+ Bxf5 27.exf5 Na3+ 28.bxa3 Rf8 29.Qxg6+ Kh8 30.Kb2 b4 31.axb4 cxb4 32.Ne4 Qa3+ 33.Kb1 b3 0–1

In last week’s position, Broek won the game by 1…Qb4+! If White takes the queen Black has 2…Nf5 mate, and if he does anything to avoid that, he loses his queen.

The previous week’s problem by Dave Howard was solved by moving either knight to e6, after which, no matter what Black tries, there will be a range of different mates. Check them out.

This position is taken from the London Classic in December 2015, immediately before White’s winning move. It’s a well-known idea that rarely comes up in practice.

White to play and win.

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