Sunday, February 04, 2007

Ghostbusting in Chess

Recently, I watched a blitz game at our club. One player blundered his Queen, letting her be taken by a pawn. Immediately I saw the reason, because the pawn would have been pinned if the King would be able to pin a pawn. Of course he is not. And really, after having resigned, the player admitted that he thought the pawn was pinned - by his King!

Such things are not just nonsense. I think it pays to spend some thoughts on it. Obviously, our player has mixed up his two largest pieces of wood on his board. One - bot ONLY one - of them could have pinned the pawn.

In fact, there was another type of ghost image involved: The Queen cannot take a Rook and pin the pawn at the same time.

Another mixing up often occurs at CTS when I do lots of problems in a row. Sometimes I think I am Black when I am White. Sometimes I see that I am White but try to checkmate my own King.

There are even more types of ghost images. For instance, Rooks that can move diagonally like Bishops. Or Knights that can hop on their own diagonal. Often, such ghost hops are triggered by strong squares, for instance a fork on King and Queen. If you stare long enough at such a square, it magically attracts every Knight in its neighbourhood, regardless of its ability to get there.

Ghost pawns are also very common. They move in the wrong direction or protect pieces on squares behind them.

Will all this theory help in a game, I hear you ask. My answer: I am not sure. But as a ghostbuster you must know your ghosts. Only then you can fight them.



At 8:34 PM, Blogger transformation said...

jim, thank you, i was hoping you got to read my post and succesive comments on percentage accuracy.

there is no question that your efforts are a great inspiration, and surely an inspiration to me. you are the new gold standard, and i must stand in line behind you. warmest regards from seattle,

thank you sir and hope all is well with you this winter personally? dk

At 10:19 PM, Blogger Mousetrapper said...

DK, no idea why you call me Jim. It's fine as long as you do not know and use my real name. But thanks for your comment.

At 8:28 AM, Blogger transformation said...

sorry, i appologize.

i thought that i had heard you either call yourself jim, or others, so im not sure. ill just revert to mouseT. i dont know who you are, only enjoy your writing and follow your excellent results.


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