111 Middlegame Crimes and Punishments
About / 111 Middlegame Crimes and Punishments
Most chess games end in the middlegame. Therefore, to achieve good results, you have to play well at this stage of the game. This middlegame textbook by Grandmaster Alexander Galkin, who was named Children’s Trainer of the Year in 2016 by the Russian Chess Federation, and Woman International Master Anastasia Travkina, provides a large volume of practical knowledge.
The vast majority of middlegame tactics and positional textbooks contain a selection of positions and exercises where the student is asked to find a tactic, carry out an attack against the enemy king or choose the right positional approach based on certain “rules”. However, there is not much focus on the mistake by one of the players that led to the critical position where the combination, decisive attack or positional improvement became possible.
In this book, aimed at strong tournament players (1900-2300 Elo or fast improving juniors) the authors introduce a wider approach to developing middlegame tactical and positional skills that a formidable chess player needs. Specifically, they present 111 positions from games of grandmasters played in 2019, including super-GMs such as Magnus Carlsen, Fabiano Caruana, Ding Liren, Anish Giri, Ian Nepomniachtchi, Daniil Dubov, Wesley So, Hikaru Nakamura, Levon Aronian, and Wang Hao, in which they first explain the mistake made by one of the players in underestimating their opponent’s counterplay, then they analyze how the game progressed where punishment for the mistake is meted out. After that, they return to the starting position to demonstrate the correct or a more promising continuation. Therefore, the text is structured so that each challenge contains the starting diagram twice – before the moves in the actual game, and then, on the page overleaf, before the solution.
Alexander Galkin was born in 1979 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. He has won many titles.
Anastasia Travkina was born in 1992 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. Woman International Master (2018) with a career high rating of 2304. Winning team member in Russian women’s blitz team championship (2016). European universities women’s blitz champion (2016). Winning team member in Russian students women’s team championship (2017). Prize winner in many international tournaments. She has coached children since 2008.