Weekly Quiz No.13 – 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 at least one better plan (and move) and 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 one of England’s top Grandmasters, Tony Miles, and your opponent is World Champion, Anatoly Karpov. The game, perhaps the most famous ever played by an English player, was played at the European Team Championships in Skaro in 1980 and you are about to play your 23rd move.

1.e4 a6

Miles commented that there was no reaction from Karpov as he watched his face but the reaction from the audience was another thing. Sniggering had broken out! During the game, Miles was banking on Karpov’s safety first approach, avoiding all the good yet sharp lines for White.

2.d4 b5 3.Nf3 Bb7 4.Bd3 Nf6 5.Qe2 e6 6.a4 c5 7.dxc5 Bxc5 8.Nbd2 b4 9.e5 Nd5 10.Ne4 Be7 11.O-O Nc6 12.Bd2 Qc7 13.c4 bxc3 14.Nxc3 Nxc3 15.Bxc3 Nb4 16.Bxb4 Bxb4 17.Rac1 Qb6 18.Be4 O-O 19.Ng5 h6 20.Bh7+ Kh8 21.Bb1 Be7 22.Ne4 Rac8 23.Qd3

Your options are:
A) Play 23…Bxe4 to eliminate White’s strong knight.
B) Play 23…Qxb2 to win a pawn and threaten White’s rook on c1.
C) Play 23…Rxc1 to exchange rooks then play 24…Qxb2.
D) Play 23…g6 to block White’s attacking intentions.


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