Travail Pursuit #2: An open Closed Sicilian

Vasco vs. Shapland, 2000. The opening was a Closed Sicilian but now, after Black's 12th move the centre has opened up and the complications are about to begin!

Vasco vs. Shapland, 2000. The opening was a Closed Sicilian but now, after Black’s 12th move, the centre has opened up and the complications are about to begin!

Today’s game was played on this day in 2000. I was living down in London at the time and this game was played in the London League. It’s not a particularly great game in terms of quality, quite the opposite in fact. Both sides made several significant mistakes during the course of a complicated middle game. However, when I looked at the game again recently I thought that one phase of it was quite instructive so I’m going to offer it to readers as a test of your calculation and judgement.

The game viewer below has all the moves in it but I’ve set it up to start at the first critical moment in the game. The viewer is in “Training mode” so that you won’t be able to see the next move until you forward the game on using the arrow keys below the board. This means that those of you who fancy exercising your little grey cells can analyse the position each time a question is posed and see if you can calculate and assess it better than me and my opponent did nearly 15 years ago. I have no doubt that most of you will but I think the exercise will still offer a little bit of a challenge even for stronger players.

If you don’t want to use the training mode but just want to play through the game then you can toggle in and out of “Training mode” by selecting the button with a ‘(…)’ on it (bottom right).

How did you get on? I’d be interested to know how easy or difficult readers found this. Did you spot an error in my analysis? I’m not perfect so please leave a comment if you think I missed something.

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5 Responses to “Travail Pursuit #2: An open Closed Sicilian”

  1. Martin Carpenter

    Apr 17. 2014

    Its a known theme from a few (accelerated) dragon lines, so not terribly hard to spot :) (Much harder in a game than as a puzzle of course.).

    Reply to this comment
  2. Dave

    Apr 17. 2014

    Hi Martin,

    Thanks for the comment. I’m assuming you are referring to the first position in the viewer. Yes, it’s fairly straightforward… but what about the others? Your comment reads to me like you hadn’t realised that you can go beyond the diagram position to answer further questions by using the forward and backward arrows below the browser or by selecting a variation displayed in the move list or simply selecting the ‘(…)’ icon in the move list.

    If I’m doing you a great disservice then I very much apologise. I’m trying to use the full range of functionality on our shiny new game viewer and I’m not sure I’m explaining myself very well.

    Thank you for taking the time to feedback.

    Dave

    Reply to this comment
    • Martin Carpenter

      Apr 17. 2014

      I’d gone a bit further than just the position but hadn’t realised it went as far as it did with loads more questions etc.

      The game viewer doesn’t really make this brilliantly obvious :)

      Reply to this comment
      • Dave

        Apr 17. 2014

        Thanks Martin. I might change the article text to explain it more thoroughly then. Cheers

        Reply to this comment

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    […] Travail Pursuit #2: An open Closed Sicilian Yorkshire Chess Today’s game was played on this day in 2000. I was living down in London at the time and this game was played in the London League. It’s not a … […]

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