Spotting Tactical Threats
Seirawan Strategy Example #3

Winning Chess Strategies, Diagram 12, p36

This example shows that even Bobby Fischer, arguably the great player of them all, can have his game affected by an opponent's Tactical Threats.

First, scan the board and you'll discover Black has a Material Advantage of a single Pawn.

Next, look for weaknesses in the position -- any weakness could become a target, and Tactics can be used to attack them:

We note that Black's b6-Pawn is mentioned in relation to both of Black's weaknesses. Seirawan reveals that Bobby Fisher spotted this as the problem that could lose him the game (via a Back Rank Mate).

Play through the following two sequences and you'll have a better understanding of the tactical situation ...


[Event "U.S. Championship, 1963-64"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "????.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Reshevsky"]
[Black "Fischer"]
[Result "*"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "5rk1/5ppp/Bp3q2/2rp4/1R1N4/2n1P1Pb/1Q3P1P/R5K1 b - - 0 0"]
[PlyCount "7"]

1...b5 2.Bxb5 Nxb5 3.Rxb5 Rxb5 4.Qxb5 Qe5 *