Weekly Quiz No.5 – Find the Plan (and Move)!

Weekly Quiz No.5 – 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 probably the strongest ever female chess player, Grandmaster, Judit Polgar, and your opponent is GM Wolfgang Uhlmann. The game was played in round 12 of the Aruba tournament in 1992 and you are about to play your 10th move.

This position has been chosen as it is likely to be a similar to one that many club players may find themselves in. The next few moves are key.

1.c4 g6 2.e4 Bg7 3.d4 d6 4.Nc3 Nf6 5.Be2 O-O 6.Bg5 Na6 7.Qd2 e5 8.Nf3 Qe8 9.dxe5 dxe5 10.Rd1

Your options are:
A) Play 10…c6 to remove any White threat to play Nd5 (or Nb5).
B) Play 10…Bg4 to exchange for White’s knight on f3 and then target the d4 square for occupation by a Black knight.
C) Play 10…Nc5 to improve the position of the knight on the rim (which is supposedly dim) and put pressure on White’s e-pawn.
D) Play 10…b6 followed by Bb7 to attack White’s e-pawn which may be difficult to defend.
E) Play 10…Be6 to keep an eye on the d5 square, perhaps exchange it for any White knight that lands there. There is no concern around Nxe5 as the long diagonal is opened for Black’s dark squared bishop, White’s e-pawn becomes weaker and the pawn deficit can be recovered (with Bc8) if required.
F) Play 10…Nd7 to avoid the trade on f6 and maybe re-route the knight to c5. It also frees up any potential f5 move.
G) Play 10…Nh5 to avoid the trade on f6 and maybe re-route the knight to f4. Similar to Option F, it also frees up any potential f5 move.

Solution