Weekly Quiz No.2 – Find the Plan (and Move)!

Weekly Quiz No.2 – Find the Plan (and Move)!

Over the summer, on each Saturday we will be providing a Weekly Quiz Question on Find the Plan (and Move)! This will be taken from an actual game position and you will be provided with a number of possible options but only one might be best! These will be different to the Puzzles as they do not lead to an immediate win or draw but will focus more on the right plan so we recommend that you spend 5 to 10 minutes considering the position.

There will be one better plan (and move) and at least one weaker plan (and move) with other plans (and moves) assessed as being somewhere in between.

Martin Simons welcomes your feedback on the weekly quiz and any game submissions you may have for inclusion.

In today’s position you have Black alongside the Soviet Grandmaster Vitaly Tseshkovsky, and your opponent is Yuri Razuvaev. The game was played in round one of the USSR Chess Championship in 1978 and you are about to play your 16th move.1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 e6 4.Nc3 exd5 5.cxd5 g6 6.e4 d6 7.Bf4 Bg7 8.Bb5+ Bd7 9.Be2 Qe7 10.Qc2 O-O 11.Nf3 Bg4 12.h3 Bxf3 13.Bxf3 Nbd7 14.O-O a6 15.a4 Rab8 16.a5

Being the 1st round, you want to get your tournament off to a winning start, so which do you think is the best move to try and achieve this?

Your options are:
A) Play 16…Ne8 to maintain control over the e5 square and re-route the knight to the queenside.
B) Play 16...Ne5 to threaten to capture White’s bishop on f3 or more likely, make it retreat.
C) Play 16...b5 and attack on the queenside, and force White to be on the defensive. Assuming White plays 17.axb6, the open b-file compensates for the weak a-pawn.
D) Play 16...c4 so that the knight on d7 can move to c5 and put extra pressure on White’s e-pawn. It might also threaten Nd3 or Nb3.
E) Play 16...Rfe8 as rooks need to be placed on open files and in this case put more pressure on White’s e-pawn.