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Nineteenth-Century Openings

Article mattg.66.0C7302D4@indirect.com > of rec.games.chess.analysis

Many of the posts here on r.g.c.a. take the form "what should I play against..." or the related, but very different, "what's a good line against...". I've been thinking about this a lot lately, both for myself, and, more especially, for my students, who range in strength from beginner to class A, and I've come up with some thoughts that I'd like to share and invite feedback on.

  I believe it was Reti

Ten rules for the opening

  1. Get your pieces out into the centre quickly. The opening  is a race to see who can get their pieces out first while keeping at least a share of control of the centre.
    • This is the main point to remember; all the other rules are just footnotes to this one.  Sortez les pieces!

  2. Get a firm foothold in the centre - a pawn on one of the 'little centre' squares e4/e5/d5/d4 - and don't give it up without good reason

General advice on the endgame

1 key idea, 3 principles, 15 general laws, 12 practical guides and 6 tips for the ending

One key idea: the passed pawn.

  1. Endgames, and some middlegames, are all about creating and advancing a passed pawn. Either the pawn queens, or your opponent gets so tied up in knots trying to stop it that they lose something else.

3 principles (Fine)

  1. Without pawns, you must be at least a Rook ahead in order to force mate (exceptions: R+R wins against two minor pieces; four minor pieces win against a Queen)

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