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1.b4 looks powerful to me:1. b4 cb3 (else lose queen)2. Nb5And black's queen has nowhere to go. Now, black has a number of options to minimize the material loss, but the line that seems best to me is...2. .....Rb53. Rc5 Rc5 (else 4.Bxb5)4. Bd6 and white's advantage should be decisive.
Trapping the Queen is the obvious theme, but how do you close the trap? 1. b4 cxb3(e.p) 2. Nb1 seals off the escape route at a3, and everything else is covered.
1. b4 cxb3 2. Nxb5 1-0. White wins the Queen.
I love the position without white N at c3.Anyway1.b4 cxb32.Nxb5 seals black.It has the advantage that it deprives black Q the square a3.Also it supports B capturing d6.
1.b4 cxb42.Na4. Qa33.Ra1+-
Nice queen trap:1. Na4! bxa42. Rxc4 Qb5Here white can choose between Rc2 Qb3 Re3 Qxe3(Qa2? Nb4) fxe3 Nxe4 or perhaps better Rxa4 Qxb2 Re2 Qc3 Rc2.
pht,I actually looked briefly at that line last night before doing the short analysis of b4, and I thought it weaker:1. Na4? ba42. Rc4 Qb53. Rc2! Bc6!And now it is complicated. The obvious continuation is to take the queen:4. Bb5 Bb5And black has two knights and a queen's bishop for a queen and pawn- materially, not an imbalanced trade. Now, I am not really convinced that 4.Bb5 is actually the best move for white, but it would take a lot of work to find a better line, I think, and wouldn't be a natural over-the-board plan anyway. Just at a glance, at move 4 in the line, I think it better to get some of the sacrificed material back rather than grab the queen:4. dc6 Qa55. Bd6!And now black has a real problem about what to do with the knight at d7. If he plays it to e5, white still wins the piece with Rc5 skewering the queen and knight. Right now, I can't really say what line black should choose here, but I like white's edge better there than the 4.Bb5 line.
Richard Schwartz, 2. Nb1 doesn't work... yes, it blocks the a3 square, but black Queen is now free to escape to a5. 2. Nb5 cuts of that escape route.
Sorry, forget my last remark... the pawn on b5 is already in the way of black Queen... it can't go to a5. So 2. Nb1 works very well - a3 is covered... knight on c6 covers b4 and d4/e3 are also blocked. Black Queen is trapped.
To Yancey Ward:I think you are right about 1. Nxb5 being a poor move.I must admit I didn't see the Bxc6 resource for white.I also can't explain why I didn't look at the obvious 1. b4!
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