Please take time to decide upon a move for black before reading further.
In the game the player of the black pieces decided to take the pawn on g3:
How would you recapture?
The first thing most who teach Chess do is have their students learn the rules and principles of Chess. “Generally speaking, one of the most common principles beginners are taught is to always “capture toward the center”. – Vjekoslav Nemec (https://www.quora.com/When-pushing-pawns-is-it-better-to-capture-chess-pieces-toward-the-edge-or-the-center?share=1)
One of the reasons computer Chess programs are far superior to human players is they have no preconceived ideas about how the game should be played. If a move grades out as best the machine makes the move no matter what rule or principle it violates, or how ugly it appears. I believe it was IM John Watson
in his magnificent, award winning book, Secrets of Modern Chess Strategy, who wrote, “I spent the first ten years learning the rules of Chess, and the next ten years learning when to violate the rules.”
In the above position, taken from the recent game between GMs Alexander Lenderman
and GM Leinier Dominguez
from the eight round of the 2022 US Chess Championship the latter Grandmaster played what GM Yasser Seirwan would call a “howler.”
Bishop takes pawn on g3 was a losing move. What could possibly explain why one of the top players in the world played a losing move? The only logical explanation is that he expected his opponent to capture the doomed Bishop with the h-pawn. Lenderman took little time before capturing with the h-pawn. Both GMs were complacent. The game ended in a draw.
Let us have a look at the position as seen in the minds of the two Grandmasters, if they even gave much thought to the possibility of taking with the King:
No doubt about it, that’s UGLY!
Mother once said she thought the actor Richard Boone was “So ugly he’s pretty.” That caused me to cogitate for awhile…
To the rational and logical mind of a Chess player it is anathema to even consider such an ugly move that violates all the rules and principles learned over a lifetime of playing Chess. Nevertheless there are times when a Chess player simply MUST consider a move, no matter how ugly it seems to the logical and rational mind of a human player. Sometimes a player has to consider a move no matter how ugly it appears because there are times when the pretty ugly move becomes so ugly it’s pretty.
Lenderman 2535 vs Dominguez 2747
2022 US Chess Championship
- d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. g3 d5 4. Bg2 Be7 5. Nf3 O-O 6. O-O dxc4 7. Qc2 b5 8. a4 Bb7 9. axb5 a6 10. bxa6 Nxa6 11. Qxc4 Bd5 12. Qc3 c5 13. Be3 Ne4 14. Qe1 Nb4 15. Rxa8 Qxa8 16. Nc3 Nxc3 17. bxc3 Nc2 18. Qd2 Nxe3 19. Qxe3 h6 20. Qf4 Rd8 21. c4 Be4 22. dxc5 Bxc5 23. Qe5 Bd6 24. Qc3 Rc8 25. Ra1 Qc6 26. Rc1 Bd5 27. Qd2 Qc5 28. Nd4 Bxg2 29. Kxg2 Bxg3 30. hxg3 Rd8 31. e3 e5 32. Qe2 exd4 33. exd4 Rxd4 34. Qe8+ Qf8 35. Qc6 Qd6 36. Qe8+ Qf8 37. Qc6 Qd6 38. Qe8+ Qf8 1/2-1/2