Understand The Position 3: “Obscure, but Logical”
The position on the board appeared shortly after the opening. The pieces are not in direct contact and we, therefore, do not find any tactics in this position. It is not important to calculate in such situation; it is important to find the correct plan.
Translated by: D. Turcer
It would seem that all white pieces (except Na4) are ready for f2-f4 advance. However, this advance is double-edged: either White gives the e5 square to his opponent, or (if f2-f4 is prepared by g2-g3) weakens his king, namely the long white diagonal. Karpov as a very strong strategist doesn’t want to allow any counterplay; he wants to win easily, to create a pressure without risk. He, therefore, turns his attention to the queenside.
White has a 3 to 2 majority on the queenside and so he can create the passed b-pawn. Another dangerous strategic plan is to advance c2-c4-c5 and to enforce the exchange of the white c-pawn for the black d-pawn. Black would then remain with the weaknesses on the c-file.
The game continued:
White turned his queenside predominance to the advanced passed pawn. Black’s counterplay is still invisible. Karpov finally pushed the pawn to b7 and gained a material for it.
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