Traps, Tricks & Mistakes: Queen’s Trick

This post is a collaboration with Mr Andrew Crosby who is an expert in chess gambits.
Andrew usually plays them in his games with great success. In addition, he is an active member of our virtual club taking part in our online tournaments and matches.

The Candidates Tournament has a long tradition that began with its first edition in 1950 in Budapest. Zurich hosted the second and possibly the most famous edition in 1953.

When Madrid (Spain) hosted the tournament in 2022, the pool of eight players comprised: Jan-Krzystof Duda (Poland), Ding Liren (China), Fabiano Caruana and Hikaru Nakamura (USA), Ian Nepomnichtchi (Russia), Teimur Radjabov (Azerbaijan), Alireza Firouzja (France) and Richard Rapport (Hungary). The format was a double round-robin with a prize pool of €500,000 (€48,000 for the winner).

It was a Candidates debut for Alireza Firouzja, Richard Rapport and Jan-Krzystof Duda.

Today’s game is taken from round 5 when it was a veteran versus a newcomer. Fabiano Caruana, playing White, faced Richard Rapport. It was the shortest game of that round but the most spectacular with a final trick that led to a point shared.

With his invasion after 17.Qxg7, Caruana admitted that his play was a bit risky: “I didn’t feel like I had full control of the game, but I also at some point felt I might be better.”

Apparently Caruana missed Rapport’s trick 19…e5: “I saw it once he played 17…a3 quickly. I understood he was going to play 19…e5, but at that point I didn’t see any way to avoid the draw.”

Richard Rapport is a creative, resourceful and unpredictable player, which makes it difficult to prepare against him and this game proves this to be the case.

Maybe you play chess but are unable to attend a local club. If that is your case, then join our virtual club. On our site, we regularly play online tournaments and team matches. More than 960 members enjoy that chance and new players join every week. We have new tournaments scheduled for the coming months waiting for players! Join now! Additionally, we have a puzzle section and we have recently started to practice the variant of ‘Vote Chess’. Although not very popular, ‘Vote Chess’ is an effective educational tool for learning together.

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