How to Avoid Blunders. Part Two.
Today we'll continue to discuss the nature of chess blunders and the ways to prevent or at least minimize them.
2) Blunders due to premature relaxation
This is an extremely common type of blunder and an especially painful one. It happens when you have a completely winning position and think that the game is over. Then comes a blunder. Every chess player had a similar experience in his or her chess career. Blunders like this cost the National scholastic title to a couple of my younger students. But sometimes a horrible blunder can ruin not just a game or a tournament, but a whole chess career. Look at the next diagram. White has an extra Knight and should be winning. The black rooks only look threatening, but cannot really harm the White King. For a Master and especially a Grandmaster the rest should be just a matter of technique. This position happened in the 23rd game of the World Championship match Steinitz-Chigorin. If Chigorin wins the game (as he should), he levels the score in the match and the last 24th game should decide the World Chess Crown. Now, see what happened: