At the beginning of the game the forces stand in
Correct play on both sides maintains this equilibrium and leads
to a drawn game.
Therefore a player can win only as a consequence of an error
made by the opponent. (There is no such thing as a winning
As long as the equilibrium is maintained, an attack, however
skilful, cannot succeed against correct defence. Such a defence
will eventually necessitate the withdrawal and regrouping of the
attacking pieces and te attacker will then inevitably suffer
In chess, only the attacker wins. Defenders win only when the
attacker makes a mistake, OR if the attacker had no right to attack
in the first place. Even then, the defender must become the
attacker to win.
The right to attack belongs only to that side which has the
better position - a positional advantage of some sort.
If you have the advantage, you have not only a right to attack,
but also a duty to attack, otherwise there is the risk of losing
Book review: Attack with Mikhail Tal (179pp+index)
Cadogan Press: London.
Mikhail Tal and Iakov Damsky. [[sterling]]11.99.
Mikhail Tal needs no introduction; the wizard who emerged in the
late 1950s as a force to complement the science of Botvinnik. This
is Mikhail Tal's last word to the chess world, some of which was
transcribed from tapes made within days of his death in 1994, and
which he did not live to complete. Damsky tells us the planned