Andrew Green Talk and the Capablanca Rule

On Tuesday 19th March Candidate Master Andrew Green gave a talk to the club members. Andrew works as a full time chess coach, and has lots of experience in coaching many Scottish junior internationalists.

Andrew explained a few topics with great clarity. He gave a simple method of evaluating positions (MAPS – material, activity, pawn structure, space), and explained the “Capablanca rule” of how to use your pawns to play against the enemy Bishop. This isn’t a particularly well known concept, and made an impression on me as I had recently seen the same idea in a Chess24 video from GM Laurent Fressinet:

This position comes from 2 computer games, Stockfish against Google’s Alpha Zero, famous for getting its strength from purely playing against itself millions of times. Alpha Zero has “taught” itself Capablanca’s rule, and was able to restrict the dark squared bishop by 1…f6! 2.c3 g5! 3.Bd2 a5!, and Black is fine.