The MYMP offers training on a vital subject, the choice of the ‘best’ avail- able plan. As is commonly accepted in the chess world, a correct Evalua- tion of the position, a strong Plan and an accurate Execution are the three important factors that separate ‘the expert from the amateur’. In a way, efficient training on the three above mentioned concepts can help a chess player mature and lead him to new successful paths.
Back in 2007 I published my first English language book on planning (Modern Chess Planning — Gambit), which was later translated and pub- lished in the Greek, Spanish and Ira- nian languages, making it a best-seller. I took seriously the various recommendations and notes of the readers and so in that respect I improved the writing and the presentation of the tests aiming to fulfil your expectations.
Now, as said, the format changed, with 25 thematic chapters, where in each of them 4 tests are included. Each theme is analysed by modern concepts and tips, which will drive the reader to the right path. For me solving the tests is not the most important feature. Understanding them and learning how to do the job in an over-the-board game is far more important and what counts in the end of the day!
With this book I have sought to provide a training guide that will be helpful mostly to players in the 1500–2200 range — corresponding to a lower club level up to those with aspirations for a FIDE title.
Of course, the book may well also be useful for players weaker than 1500, or for those stronger than 2200, but this is a decision these players should make for themselves!
In this book there are 78 tests, each based around a game. In each of these tests, the starting point is the first diagram. There is an evaluation of the diagrammed position, which helps the reader to understand some important facts about the position itself.
A presentation of three possible plans follows. Then the reader must decide which is the most valuable/best plan. The best plan receives a maximum of 50 points. The other, less good, bad or indifferent plans normally receive some points or none at all, depending on their actual value and correctness. Some of the plans receive no points at all; they are just bad!
After completing the work on each test, the reader must take a look at the solution, where he can find the answers. In the solutions, the game is analysed until its end, so the reader can better understand why the rewarded plan was the ‘best’ in the position and how it worked out. There are a few examples where the best available plan was overlooked, but these are exceptions and the games are nevertheless quite interesting.
By this point, you will have received some very good training. But then, it will do no harm to measure your ‘strength’ on this subject. The maximum score is 3900 points and you should divide your total score by 1.5.
As one might notice from the score-table, expectations are a little higher than usual for the categories listed, as in this book the evaluation of the position is given by the author beforehand, and this is a great help for the reader. A correct evaluation of any position is one of the most significant factors in chess, but that could be the subject for another book.
It is now time for you to work and train on that important chess concept, the plan. Have fun and train well!