One of “Those” Moves

Sometimes I see a position and I think that if only I could understand some aspect of it that I would be closer to understanding chess on a much deeper level.

Take this position for instance. The game is Radjabov-Mamedov from Shamkir 2018

Here White has just played 15.Ng5 which seems tantamount to offering a draw. So mentally I’m thinking “OK, 15…Bxg5 16.Qxg5 Qxg5 17.Bxg5.” However, after 15…Bxg5 16.Qxg5 Mamedov plays 16…Bg6

OK, now this I can puzzle through and understand. If Black would have continued through with my idea then he would have been developing White’s dark squared bishop for free.

So after 17.Qxd8 Rxd8 18.Be2 Nb8 19.Be3 Nc6 20.Rfc1 this position is reached:

Here Mamedov plays 20…Rdc8.

This is one of those “which rook” positions that drive me nuts. My first thought is that maybe there’s a problem with 20…Rac8 21.Bg5 Rd7 22.b4, but as I looked at the position I realized there was an immediate tactical refutation after 21.Bg5

Here Black would simply play 21…Nxd4 as the rook on d8 is impervious to capture due to the fork threat on e2.

So this leaves me wondering…what is the real difference. Clearly there is one, but what?

Food for thought and something to work on.

Here is the entire game:

Til Next Time,

Chris Wainscott

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