Home Page arrow Chess Life Online arrow 2015 arrow August arrow Tactics From the U.S. Open
Tactics From the U.S. Open Print E-mail
By Vanessa West   
August 8, 2015
As the US Open approaches its finale, brilliant tactician and four-time US Champ Alexander Shabalov leads in clear first with a perfect 7/7, including wins over two higher ranked GMs, Alejandro Ramirez and Bartlomiej Macieja.

As the penultimate round looms tonight, Digital Assistant Vanessa West demonstrates some key tactics from her and other games. Follow the penultimate round at monroi.com and look for FM Mike Klein's report prior to final round drama on Sunday, August 9.

Bobby Fischer said, "Tactics flow from the positionally superior game."

How skilled are you at turning positional advantages into tactical combinations?

Tactic #1

GM Alexander Shabalov vs. GM Bartlomiej Macieja, Round 6

Tactic 1 - Shabalov-Macieja.jpg

White to move

After an intense tactical onslaught in the opening, material still hangs in the balance. Both sides have numerous undefended pieces. How can White take advantage?

Show Solution

Tactic #2
Vanessa West vs. Michael Baker, Round 2

Tactic 1 - West vs. Baker.jpg

 White to move

My opponent made an error earlier in the game that allowed me to open up his kingside. Additionally, I have a powerfully placed queen, and my knights ready to occupy central posts at a moment's notice. How did I continue here?

Show Solution

Tactic #3
GM Alejandro Ramirez vs. Thomas Riccardi, Round 5

Tactic 2 - Ramirez vs. Riccardi.jpg

White to move

Black's last move was Bxb5, intending to trade a bishop for a knight.

All of GM Ramirez's pieces are well-placed: His bishops have nice diagonals. His rooks are on open files. His knight has a strong central post. How did he use these advantages? 

Show Solution

Tactic #4

IM Mark Ginsburg vs. Vanessa West, Round 7

Tactic 3 - Ginsburg vs. West.jpg
White to move

White's has a clear edge: the two bishops along with weaknesses all over Black's position. How did White swiftly finish the game?

Show Solution

Tactic #5
Vanessa West vs. Anthony Booth, Round 4

Tactic 4 - West vs. Booth.jpg

White to move

My pieces are incredibly active: My knights are centralized. I have a rook on the 7th rank. My bishop on b2 virtually cuts through the entire position and makes my opponent's king constantly uncomfortable. All of Black's pieces are placed a precariously, but, at the same time, all of them seem guarded. How did I proceed?

Show Solution

To follow the standings of all events, go here. To follow the games live via Monroi, click here.