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29 Feb 2016

Chess960 SP684

Chess960 SP684

Today it is time to share yet another chess960 game from ChessRex. This one started on December 1st, 2015 and finished on February 11th, 2016. This has been the only unofficial game I have played there and it is sort of a shame that this was not a rated game, because I could have gained a decent amount of rating points from this game. This is because my opponent was higher rated than me by roughly 300 points. My rating at ChessRex is currently quite low compared to other sites I play at, but I should be able to get to a similar rating there as I have been able to get on other sites. For each of their moves, both players could have used 7 days, well most of it anyway.

This is one of those starting positions where I do not like the initial squares for the bishops. This is because I woould like to avoid playing both c4 and f4, due to the fact that I would like to castle to the kingside or the queenside. I would probably prefer castling kingside because I would like to get my queen active by moving the b-pawn and if I fianchetto the queen, I would probably be facing some troubles on the long diagonal if I were to castle queenside. Then again it might not be that easy to take advantage of the long diagonal in this particular starting position because the bishops start pretty much at the worst possible squares.

I started the game by playing 1.e4, I decided to move the e-pawn instead of the pawns that could have helped in the development of the bishops because I wanted to take the center in control with one of my pawns. I prefer e4 over d4 because I want to castle kingside and also because now I can develop my f-knight to e3 where it eyes on squares like d5 and f5 and further increases my control over important squares. RAGINGBULL replied e4 with Ng6, with the idea of preventing me from playing f4 and opening the diagonal for the bishop or that is what I assume at least. The knight on g6 also controls the important center square e5. I go ahead with my plan of 2.Ne3 and RAGINGBULL replies with f6. It is true that RAGINGBULL's move opens the diagonal for the bishop where it is probably better placed than tucked away on h7, but positionally f6 does not look so great to me. I continue by trying to get the center even more firmly in my grasp with d4, but now my opponent challenges it with e5. 4.Nf3 might not have been the best idea from me, but it is not a huge mistake either, more like an inaccurate move. I think both players continue with natural looking moves until we come to the position after 8...fxe5. Actually already after 7...O-O, I was quite certain that I could win a pawn. I could not see any real problems with 9.Nxe5, so of course I took the pawn. If I do not see a clear reason why I can't take some material, I usually end up taking it. I would have been better off by castling than taking the pawn, but everything worked out in the game continuation though only because RAGINGBULL was not able to take full advantage of my mistakes.

If a move like 11.f4 could have put me in a clearly worse position, then my moves 14.Rfe1 and 15.Bd4 should have been bad enough to lose the game. The game does go towards a more even position yet again on move 17, but with my 18th move my position starts to go down the drain again. Luckily for me, this was the last time in the game when I made a huge blunder. RAGINGBULL went astray couple of times after this and those two blunders were enough for me to keep the advantage on my side until the end of the game. I have added one analysed game to the following posts: A45 Indian Game: General, C41 Philidor Defense: Exchange Variation #2, B01 Scandinavian Defense: Icelandic-Palme Gambit and C46 Four Knights Game: Gunsberg Variation. I have also added one mate in two, three mate in three and one mate in four puzzle today.

26 Feb 2016

C56 Two Knights: 4.d4 exd4 5.O-O Nxe4 (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.c3 dxc3 5.Bc4 d6 6.Nxc3 Be7 7.O-O Nf6)

C56 Two Knights: 4.d4 exd4 5.O-O Nxe4 (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.c3 dxc3 5.Bc4 d6 6.Nxc3 Be7 7.O-O Nf6)

This week's last post adds one more opening variation that I have not covered before in the blog. This game was played on the first round of the 2015 October Grand Split Three Seven I 1800+ tournament. The game below sees its first mistake with the move 6...Be7, 6...Nf6 would be the preferred move in this position. I think I saw the problem of the move I chose after I had made the move 6...Be7, but at that point there was not all that much I could do about it. The reason why 6...Be7 is bad is the fact that red cloud could have played 7.Qb3 and I can't really defend f7. 7...Nh6 does not work because Bxh6 and 7...Na5 is not much better because it would lose the f-pawn as well. For some reason red cloud did not play Qb3, but instead castled, which gives me time to breathe. Shortly after that I start to gain some small advantage, which I give away again on move 15.

Apart from the blunder Be7, I had played the first 14 moves quite decently. The game goes to a balanced state for a couple of moves and then I make one of the worst moves I remember of making, 17...Bd8. The position was quite difficult for me to play at this point, but I have no idea why I did not even consider the move 17...Qb7, it would have been more natural move to make. Maybe I was worried about some wierd ideas like Rxe7, followed by Bxf6, which would sacrifice the exchange in order to get the pawn cover in front of the king opened up and weakened. Combine that with Qh5 and my opponent would have had some compensation for the exchange in my opinion unless there is something obvious I am missing. I did check that line a bit with the computer just now, after typing that last sentence and Stockfish really does not like my idea. Even though White seems to be getting some compensation for the exchange, it is far from adequate. Until Monday, my fellow chess and chess960 enthusiasts! Monday I will go through one chess960 game again, so if you like chess960, remember to check out that post! It is a better quality game than the two I posted this week.

[Event "Grand Split Three Seven"] [Site "http://www.redhotpawn.com"] [Date "2015.12.21"] [Round "1"] [White "red cloud"] [Black "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C56"] [WhiteElo "1981"] [BlackElo "1909"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "43"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. c3 dxc3 5. Bc4 {Scotch Game: Göring Gambit, Double Pawn Sacrifice} (5. Nxc3 Bb4 6. Bc4 Nf6 {Scotch Game: Göring Gambit, Bardeleben Variation}) 5... d6 6. Nxc3 Be7 7. O-O Nf6 {C56 Two Knights: 4.d4 exd4 5.O-O Nxe4} 8. Nd4 {N} (8. Re1 O-O 9. Bg5 h6 10. Bh4 Bg4 11. h3 Bxf3 12. gxf3 Nd7 13. Bxe7 Qxe7 14. Nd5 Qd8 15. Kh1 Nb6 16. Nxb6 axb6 17. Rg1 Qf6 18. Qd2 Qxf3+ 19. Kh2 Qf6 20. f4 Ra5 21. Rg3 Kh8 22. Rag1 Rg8 {Skalny,P-Brazda,A (1765) Klatovy 2004 0-1 (33)}) (8. h3 O-O (8... h6 9. b4 O-O 10. Qb3 Bd7 11. Be3 Qc8 12. Rfe1 Be6 13. Rac1 Bxc4 14. Qxc4 Ne5 15. Nxe5 dxe5 16. Nb5 c6 17. Nc3 Qc7 18. b5 Bd6 19. Qb3 Qe7 20. f3 cxb5 21. Nxb5 b6 22. Red1 Rfd8 23. Nxa7 { Botwinovskyy,B (1861)-Kuersten,S (1533) Leipzig 2009 1/2-1/2}) 9. Qe2 (9. Qc2 Na5 10. Bd3 c5 11. e5 dxe5 12. Nxe5 Bd6 13. Nc4 Nxc4 14. Bxc4 a5 15. a4 Bd7 16. Bg5 Be7 17. Rfe1 Bc6 18. Rad1 Qc7 19. Re2 Rae8 20. b3 Bd8 21. Rde1 Rxe2 22. Rxe2 Ng4 23. hxg4 Bxg5 {Mares,H-Pachl,F Bellheim 1994 1-0 (33)}) 9... a6 10. Rd1 b5 11. Bb3 b4 12. Nd5 Na5 13. Bc2 Nxd5 14. exd5 Rb8 15. Bd2 Bf6 16. Rab1 g6 17. Ba4 Bf5 18. Bh6 Bxb1 19. Bxf8 Bxa2 20. Bh6 Bc4 21. Qc2 Bb5 22. Re1 Bd7 { Sipek,O-Urbanec,L (2260) Brno 1995 1/2-1/2 (34)}) 8... Bd7 9. h3 {Secures g4} O-O 10. Be3 a6 {Covers b5} 11. f4 (11. Nxc6 $5 {is an interesting idea} Bxc6 12. Qc2 {=/+}) 11... Nxd4 {+/-} 12. Bxd4 Bc6 {Black threatens to win material: Bc6xe4} (12... b5 13. Bb3 c5 14. Bf2 {+/-}) 13. Re1 {Black has a cramped position} b5 {Black threatens to win material: b5xc4} 14. Bd3 Re8 15. Qf3 (15. a4 b4 16. Nd5 Bb7 17. Nxe7+ Qxe7 {=/+} (17... Rxe7 18. Bxf6 gxf6 19. Re3 {+/=}) ) 15... Qc8 (15... Nd7 $5 {+/-}) 16. Nd5 {=} Bxd5 17. exd5 {White has the pair of bishops.} Bd8 $4 {lets it slip away} (17... Qb7 {is a viable option} 18. Rad1 Nxd5 19. Bxh7+ Kxh7 20. Qh5+ Kg8 21. Bxg7 Kxg7 22. Rxd5 Qb6+ 23. Kh2 Bf6 24. Rg5+ Bxg5 25. Qxg5+ Kh8 26. Qh4+ Kg7 27. Qg5+ Kh8 28. Qh4+ Kg7 29. Qg5+ {=} ) 18. Rxe8+ {+/-} Nxe8 19. Qe4 Nf6 20. Bxf6 Bxf6 21. Qxh7+ Kf8 22. Qh8+ (22. Qh8+ Ke7 23. Re1+ Be5 24. Qh4+ f6 25. fxe5 dxe5 26. Rxe5+ Kd6 27. Re1 Qe8 28. Qb4+ c5 29. dxc6+ Kd5 30. Be4+ Ke6 31. Bg6+ Kd5 32. Bxe8 a5 33. Bf7+ Kxc6 34. Re6+ Kd7 35. Qe7+ Kc8 36. Rc6+ Kb8 37. Qc7#) 1-0

25 Feb 2016

Chess960 SP180

Chess960 SP180

Another chess960 game and this is against the same opponent as in the game I shared yesterday. Both of these games had the same thinking times, but in neither game did the players use as much of the time as would have been allowed or even most of it. This at least was a little bit longer game than the short game I shared yesterday. The game below started on February 1st and finished on February 19th.

Like in many other starting positions, I first make sure that my bishops can be developed to places where I want to put them. The position of the queen determines for me on which side I want to castle, however, the location of the bishops might also contribute to the castling decision. In this particular starting position where the queens are located at h1 and h8, I would never want to castle short but instead I would prefer castling long. Actually in many chess960 starting positions that I have so far covered, I tend to castle long. In chess, I would like to castle short more often than not.

2.a3 is probably not the ideal move to play, but I do want to get my bishop from b1 to a2 because I would like to castle queenside. Therefore I would not like to move my c-pawn to develop the bishop because I think that my king would be less safe on the queenside if I move that pawn. Vladimirmilanovic responded with 2...e6, which seems a bit passive move. Had I been playing with the black pieces, I would have played most likely either 2...Bf5 or 2...Nf6.

I think 3.Ba2 and 3...Nb6 are reasonable developing moves to continue the game. If I would play this game again, I might change my move order a bit. It probably would have been better to play 3.Bf4 and follow that up with 4.Ba2 unless similar thing happens as in this game... I would prefer to play those two moves in that order because the move order in the game allows 3...c6, which would prevent me from playing 4.Bf4. In the game continuation my opponent plays for some reason 4...c6, which loses the game immediately, or at least a piece but when no counterplay is seen as a compensation for the piece, it should be the losing move. In fact, the rest of the game is just a matter of how one wants to win the game. I have added one analysed game to the following posts: C41 Philidor Defense: Larsen Variation, E72 King's Indian Defense: Normal Variation. Deferred Fianchetto, B92 Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation. Opocensky Variation and C28 Vienna Game: Stanley Variation, Three Knights Variation. I have also added five mate in three puzzles today.

Game number two. This is a game that was played at lichess.org on April 12th, 2016. The basic time was 10 minutes and there was also a 10 second increment. I think the first move that was not good was the move I played after 2.Nf3. As I now look at the position, I should have played 2...c6, with the idea of 3...d5. Had I been able to do that then I would not have had any problems developing my pieces, except for the queen. The problem piece is the queen on h8 because had I gone for the c6, d5 plan, then I would like to keep my king on the kingside, but as I would have needed to play h6 or h5 to get the queen into play keeping the king on the kingside does not look good to me. I would not like to play g6, because that would open the possibility to the annoying move Bh6+ in some positions. The reason I do not like 2...d6, is that it further blocks the diagonal for my dark-squared bishop.

Tricks_and_botches continued with 3.d4 and now I have to take on d4 with my pawn, because otherwise I lose material or weaken my position further. After 4.Nxd4 I played a6 in order to get my bishop developed to a7. The pawn on a6 also covers the square b5, so that my opponent can't place a knight there. Not that there would be any reason to move the knight there anyway in this position. Then my opponent castled and I played my bishop to a7. I think the only inaccuracy from me up to that point was 2...d6. Tricks_and_botches played 6.e5, the point of which I did not understand at first... Therefore I played the stupid 6...dxe5, which is a blunder that lost the game for me. After 8.Rxd8 I had a knight and a pawn for the exchange, which is not good enough because I do not think that even my slightly better development at the moment compensates for the material loss. The rook on the eight rank is restricting my options to finish my development. My knight can't move from e8 at the moment and my queen on h8 is quite hard to get into the play since playing g6 seems like a horrible idea in view of Bh6. I had to play 8...Nb6 in order to save my knight and after 9.Be3 I had to castle to get away from Bc5+. Then after 10.g3, my position went further down the drain with the move c6. I should have played Nd6 and accepted the fact that I need to trade rooks. Due to the blunder I made in the game, I had to lose another exchange. I bet a lot of people would considered of resigning the game at this point with the black pieces and I did think about it, but wanted to prolong my suffering for some reason. I was able to finally get some play and even got some material back 17...cxd5. After that I was down a mere pawn in material and thought that maybe I can get a draw after all. However, the longer the game went on, it became clear that there is no chance for me to get a draw from this game and I had to resign on move 40.

The game above can also be viewed with my live commentary. The video can be seen below.

24 Feb 2016

Chess960 SP520

Chess960 SP520

This short chess960 game was played at ChessRex between February 1st and February 7th this year. Both players had four days to use for each of their moves. I think both players start the game with logical moves. 1.e4 might not have been the move I would have chosen to play with the white pieces because I would prefer to make sure that my bishops have good squares to go to as they often seem to me the most problematic pieces to develop in a chess960 game. Therefore I might have opened up with 1.d4 or 1.c4 instead. I replied 1.e4 with d5 because I thought to go for aggressive play as soon as possible. Not only does it attack the e-pawn immediately, but it also opens the e8-a4 diagonal for my bishop and I thought I might get to develop it with a check. After two moves one might think that we are playing a variation of the Scandinavian Defense if one would only see the moves and not the arrangement of the pieces on the back rank. On move three both players continue naturally by developing their knights. 4.d4 might not seem that bad of a move, but when you think that I could have replied with c5, it does seem to me at least that Black has the initiave.

I did not play c5, but instead developed my bishop because I like to be ahead on development if possible. I did consider the fact that the bishop might be a bit awkwardly placed on b5, because in some positions I might have to be careful not to allow c4 forking the queen and the bishop. The threat of that did not seem likely to occur all that soon, so I landed my bishop on b5. My opponent replied to the check with Kg1, but Nd3 seems to better alternative because that does not lose the right to castle. I finally play c5, but a move earlier it might have been stronger. Vladirmilanovic replies with 6.c3 which is maybe a bit too passive move and a4 would have been a better move. Playing a4 does not only attack the bishop on b5, but also may have the idea of developing the bishop to a2. Then again the bishop might be better placed on the b1-h7 diagonal. The game starts to go further down the drain for my opponent after that mistake 6.a3 and on move 9 comes a terrible blunder, which basically secures my win. Giving me a free piece without any counterplay is not really a good idea... The game finishes shortly after this as my opponent self-destructs. I have added two analysed games to my post E38 Nimzo-Indian Defense: Classical Variation. Berlin Variation and one analysed game to these two posts B15 Caro-Kann Defense: Gurgenidze System and C52 Italian Game: Evans Gambit. Slow Variation. I have also added one mate in one, one mate in two, one mate in three, one mate in four and one mate in five puzzle today.

23 Feb 2016

B83 Sicilian Scheveningen: 6.Be2, lines without ...a6 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e6 6.Be2 Nc6 7.Be3 Bd7)

B83 Sicilian Scheveningen: 6.Be2, lines without ...a6 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e6 6.Be2 Nc6 7.Be3 Bd7)

The game below was my second game in a row against Nestor Oprysk and my third consecutive win at FOA. This game is the 1260th analysed chess game that has appeared in this blog and the 743rd (58.97%) win. Those analysed games also contain 124 (9.84%) draws and 393 (31.19%) losses. There are also 469 different opening variations covered in the blog, getting closer to 500 later this week though only by one. The most played opening variation still is A20 English Opening: King's English Variation. General, which has appeared in 45 games so far, which is roughly 3.6% out of all the games. My most successful opening variation that has appeared at least in 10 games is C41 Philidor Defense because my winning percentage is 100 in that so far after 10 games. The opening variation that has caused me most grief in the same category is C34 King's Gambit: Accepted. Fischer Defense because I have lost 45% out of the 20 games that are in the blog currently.

The game below features only one major blunder and it decided the game in my favor. The move 18...Ra7 does look like a mouse slip as there does not seem any other reason to play the rook there. At least I can't see any. The position where my opponent played his 18th move can be seen below.

I replied with 19.Bxa7 and my opponent resigned. I have added one analysed game to the following posts: C88 Spanish Game: Closed, C18 French Defense: Winawer Variation, Advance Variation #2, C42 Petrov's Defense #2 and D43 Semi-Slav Defense: General. I have added one mate in one, three mate in two and one mate in four puzzle today.

[Event "Challenge 37292238"] [Site "online arena"] [Date "2016.01.28"] [Round "1"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "Oprysk, Nestor"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B83"] [WhiteElo "1847"] [BlackElo "1705"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "37"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 e6 6. Be2 Nc6 {Sicilian Defense: Scheveningen Variation, Modern Variation (#3)} 7. Be3 (7. O-O Be7 8. Be3 O-O 9. f4 Bd7 10. Nb3 {Sicilian Defense: Scheveningen Variation, Modern Variation (#2)}) 7... Bd7 {B83 Sicilian Scheveningen: 6.Be2, lines without ... a6} 8. O-O Nxd4 9. Qxd4 (9. Bxd4 Bc6 10. Qd3 (10. Bd3 Be7 11. a3 O-O 12. b4 a6 13. Kh1 Qc7 14. f4 Nd7 15. e5 g6 16. Qe1 Rfe8 17. Qg3 Bf8 18. Rad1 dxe5 19. fxe5 Bg7 20. b5 axb5 21. Nxb5 Bxb5 22. Bxb5 Re7 23. Rde1 Nc5 24. a4 Rd8 { Blakaj,M-Makolli,P (2261) Gjakova 2016 0-1 (48)}) 10... Be7 11. f4 {1/2-1/2 (11) Sikula,V (2486)-Sax,G (2520) Hungary 2005}) 9... Be7 $146 {Black has a cramped position} (9... Bc6 10. Rad1 a6 11. a4 (11. f4 Be7 12. f5 e5 13. Qd3 Qa5 {1/2-1/2 (13) Lindberg,B (2443) -Sax,G (2527) Balatonlelle 2007}) 11... Be7 12. f4 O-O 13. Kh1 (13. b4 Rc8 14. b5 axb5 15. axb5 Be8 16. Kh1 Nd7 17. Na4 Rxc2 18. Bd3 Rc8 19. e5 dxe5 20. fxe5 Bg5 21. Qe4 g6 22. Rf3 b6 23. Rh3 Nc5 24. Nxc5 bxc5 25. Be2 Qe7 26. Bc4 Rb8 27. Rb1 Rb6 {Coenen,M (2309)-Lahaye, R (2398) Spijkenisse 2013 0-1 (70)}) 13... Rc8 14. Bf3 Qc7 15. f5 b5 16. fxe6 fxe6 17. axb5 axb5 18. Bg5 h6 19. Bh4 e5 20. Qb4 Qb7 21. Bxf6 Rxf6 22. Nd5 Bxd5 23. Rxd5 Rc5 24. Rfd1 {Fernandez Aguado,E (2357) -Campos Moreno,J (2498) Spain 2004 1/ 2-1/2 (38)}) (9... Bc6 10. Rad1 $11) 10. Rad1 (10. Nb5 Bc6 11. Rfd1 O-O 12. Nxd6 Bxd6 13. Qxd6 Qxd6 14. Rxd6 Nxe4 $14) 10... O-O $11 11. Nb5 Bxb5 12. Bxb5 {White has the pair of bishops} Qa5 13. Bc4 Nd7 (13... Rfc8 14. c3 $11) 14. Qd2 Qxd2 15. Rxd2 Ne5 (15... Rfc8 $5 16. Be2 Nf6 $11) 16. Be2 $16 Rac8 17. Bxa7 ( 17. b3 Nd7 $14) 17... Ra8 $14 {Black threatens to win material: Ra8xa7} 18. Bd4 Ra7 $4 (18... Rxa2 $142 {the only rescuing move} 19. f4 Nc6 $11) 19. Bxa7 $18 1-0

22 Feb 2016

B18 Classical Caro-Kann: 4...Bf5 sidelines (1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Bf5 5.Ng3 Bg6 6.f4 e6 7.Nf3 Nd7 8.Bd3)

B18 Classical Caro-Kann: 4...Bf5 sidelines (1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Bf5 5.Ng3 Bg6 6.f4 e6 7.Nf3 Nd7 8.Bd3)

Today I have added three correspondence games and this one 15 minute rapid game that was played at the FIDE Online Arena on December 12th, 2015. This was the 47th rapid game with a rating of 1700 or above and this was the 5th 15 minute game I played on December 12th. I was also back over 1800 after been below it for too long in my arrogant opinion. I knew that I could get the title then no matter what, as only three games remained for the game requirement because it is impossible to drop the rating over 100 points in those three games. The three remaining games from the 50 game requirement I will post tomorrow as well as couple of newer games I have played at the FIDE Online Arena. After that I will start posting my recent correspondence games again.

The first mistake of the game saw the light of day after my opponent played 10...a6. It is a move that I do not understand at all. Amedeo Rinaldo Romussi would have been better off developing his bishop or with any other move that helps in the development of his pieces. Obviously I do not play the best possible move as a reply, but even with my move I have a clear advantage. The game continues in a way that seems really good for me, but my inaccuracies give my opponent an easier time. For example, I am not sure why I played 13.Nxf5 because 13.Rhe1+ would be so much better. By playing 13.Rhe1+, I would keep Amedeo Rinaldo's king in the center a little bit longer. I do play Rhe1 a move later, but by then it is much more mild than it would have been a move earlier. Times like these I think that all the connections in my brain are probably not working correctly... Amedeo Rinaldo replies with 14...g6, which would have given me a clear advantage, had I played an accurate response. The game continuation fizzles out to an even position, until on move 17, my opponent makes another mistake that gives me the advantage again.

My bad move 19.Kb1 equalises the position once again and my advantage is short-lived. The game continued to head towards a draw and it would have probably ended in one too without the blunder 33...Nd6. Even after that I do not seem to find the right ideas because on move 35, I played Be3. I may have considered the possibility of winning the pawn on b7 by taking on d6 and then on b7, but for some reason I have rejected the idea. Maybe I could not calculate if my opponent gets some counterplay on the kingside and therefore ended up playing a move that seemed safer. After Be3, the position remained even for a long time and only on his 50th move, my opponent blunders the game away.

[Event "Challenge 35879266"] [Site "online arena"] [Date "2015.12.12"] [Round "1"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "Romussi, Amedeo Rinaldo"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B18"] [WhiteElo "1806"] [BlackElo "1365"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "145"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4 Bf5 5. Ng3 Bg6 6. f4 {Caro-Kann Defense: Classical Variation, Maroczy Attack} (6. h4 h6 7. Nf3 Nd7 8. h5 Bh7 9. Bd3 Bxd3 10. Qxd3 e6 11. Bd2 Ngf6 12. O-O-O Bd6 {Caro-Kann Defense: Classical Variation, Seirawan Variation} (12... Be7 {Caro-Kann Defense: Classical Variation, Lobron System})) (6. Nh3 {Caro-Kann Defense: Classical Variation, Flohr Variation}) 6... e6 7. Nf3 Nd7 8. Bd3 {B18 Classical Caro-Kann: 4...Bf5 sidelines} Bxd3 9. Qxd3 Ngf6 10. Bd2 (10. O-O Bd6 11. Ne5 O-O (11... Qb6 12. Kh1 g6 13. c3 Rf8 14. Bd2 h5 15. b4 O-O-O 16. a4 Nxe5 17. fxe5 Bxe5 18. Bg5 Bxg3 19. Bxf6 Bd6 20. Bxd8 Qxd8 21. Qe4 Qc7 22. Rf6 Kd8 23. Raf1 Ke8 24. h3 Qe7 25. b5 c5 26. dxc5 { Cubukcu,B (1661)-Yilmaz,V Manavgat 2015 1-0}) 12. Be3 Rc8 13. Rad1 Qc7 14. Kh1 Nd5 15. Ne4 Nxe3 16. Qxe3 Be7 17. Qg3 f5 18. Qb3 Nxe5 19. dxe5 Kf7 20. Nd6+ Bxd6 21. Rxd6 Rfe8 22. Rfd1 Re7 23. Qh3 Kg8 24. Qh4 Rce8 {Prijovic,B (2005) -Jovic,S (2262) Sarajevo 2012 0-1 (38)}) 10... a6 {? N} (10... Bd6 11. O-O-O Qc7 12. f5 Bxg3 13. fxe6 fxe6 14. hxg3 Qxg3 15. Qc4 O-O-O 16. Ng5 Rde8 17. Rh3 Nb6 18. Qc5 Qc7 19. Rf3 h6 20. Bf4 Qd7 21. Qe5 Kd8 22. Nf7+ Qxf7 23. Qb8+ Nc8 24. Rb3 Nd5 25. Be5 {Haffner,Z-Gal,T Hungary 2005 0-1 (31)}) (10... Qc7 11. O-O (11. O-O-O O-O-O 12. Ng5 Nb6 13. f5 exf5 14. Qxf5+ Kb8 15. Bf4 Bd6 16. Bxd6 Rxd6 17. Rhe1 Rd5 18. Re5 h6 19. N5e4 Nxe4 20. Nxe4 Nc4 21. Rxd5 cxd5 22. Qxd5 Ne3 23. Qb5 Qxc2# {0-1 (23) Nazarian,A (2012) -Kostoglotov,D (1712) Moscow 2008 }) 11... Bd6 12. Ne5 Rd8 13. Qe2 O-O 14. Rad1 c5 15. Bc3 Nd5 16. Ne4 Nxc3 17. bxc3 Be7 18. Rf3 Nf6 {1/2-1/2 (18) Swiercz,S (1948)-Ficet,A (1730) Calvi 2005}) (10... Bd6 $5 {= should not be overlooked}) 11. O-O-O (11. f5 $5 Bd6 12. fxe6 fxe6 {+/-}) 11... Qc7 12. f5 exf5 $4 {another bit of territory lost} (12... O-O-O 13. Qb3 Bd6 14. fxe6 fxe6 15. Ng5 {+/-} (15. Qxe6 Bxg3 16. hxg3 Qxg3 {=}) ) 13. Nxf5 (13. Rhe1+ {ends the debate} Kd8 14. Ne5 {+-} (14. Nxf5 Kc8 {+-})) 13... O-O-O {+/-} 14. Rhe1 (14. Ng5 Nc5 15. Qf3 Ne6 {+/-}) 14... g6 (14... Nc5 15. Qf1 Nce4 16. Ne5 Nxd2 17. Rxd2 {=}) 15. Ng3 {White has an active position} (15. Ne7+ $5 Kb8 16. Ng5 {+/-}) 15... Bd6 {+/= Black threatens to win material: Bd6xg3} 16. Nf1 Rde8 17. Qc4 {White threatens to win material: Qc4xf7} Nb6 { Black threatens to win material: Nb6xc4} (17... Nd5 $5 {=}) 18. Qb3 {+/-} Nbd5 19. Kb1 (19. c4 $5 Nf4 20. c5 {+/-}) 19... Rxe1 {=} 20. Rxe1 Re8 21. Rxe8+ Nxe8 22. g3 {Consolidates f4} Qe7 23. Ne3 Nec7 24. c4 Nxe3 25. Qxe3 Qxe3 26. Bxe3 f6 {Controls e5+g5} 27. Kc2 Kd7 28. Nd2 Ke6 29. Kd3 Kf5 30. Ne4 Be7 31. h3 Ke6 32. Bf4 {White threatens to win material: Bf4xc7} Ne8 33. b3 Nd6 $4 {throwing away the advantage} (33... h5 {= and Black has air to breath}) 34. Nc5+ {+-} Kf5 $4 {a blunder in a bad position} (34... Kf7 {+-}) 35. Be3 (35. Bxd6 {and White has prevailed} Bxd6 36. g4+ Kf4 37. Nxb7 {+-}) 35... g5 36. g4+ Kg6 37. Bf2 f5 38. gxf5+ Kxf5 39. Bg3 h5 40. Ke3 b5 41. cxb5 {White forks: a6+c6} Nxb5 (41... axb5 42. a4 bxa4 43. bxa4 Nc4+ 44. Ke2 {=}) 42. Nxa6 {White has a new passed pawn: a2} (42. a4 Nc3 43. Nxa6 Nd5+ 44. Ke2 Ke4 {=}) 42... Bf6 {Exerts pressure on the isolated pawn} 43. Kd3 Nxd4 (43... Bxd4 $2 44. a4 Bg1 45. axb5 cxb5 46. Ke2 {+-}) 44. Nb4 Be5 {Black threatens to win material: Be5xg3} 45. Bf2 {White threatens to win material: Bf2xd4} c5 {Black threatens to win material: c5xb4} 46. Nd5 g4 47. hxg4+ hxg4 {Black has a new passed pawn: g4.} 48. Be3 g3 {Black advances the passed pawn} 49. Bg1 Nf3 {Black threatens to win material: Nf3xg1} 50. Bxc5 g2 $4 (50... Ke6 {would bring relief} 51. Ne3 Ne1+ 52. Ke4 g2 {=}) 51. Ne3+ {+-} Kf4 (51... Ke6 {desperation} 52. Nxg2 Bf6 { +-}) 52. Nxg2+ Kg3 (52... Kf5 53. a4 Bc7 54. b4 Ne5+ 55. Kd4 {+-}) 53. Ne3 Ne1+ (53... Kf4 {+- otherwise it's curtains at once}) 54. Ke4 Bb2 55. a4 Bf6 56. a5 Bd8 (56... Kf2 {cannot undo what has already been done} 57. a6 Ke2 58. a7 Nd3 59. Bb6 Nf2+ 60. Kf5 Bd8 61. Bxd8 Kxe3 62. Bb6+ Kd2 63. Bxf2 Kc1 64. a8=Q Kb1 65. Qc6 Kb2 66. Qc4 Ka1 67. Bd4+ Kb1 68. Qc3 Ka2 69. Qb2#) 57. a6 Bc7 (57... Nf3 {cannot change destiny} 58. a7 Nd2+ 59. Kd3 Nf3 60. Bd6+ Kf2 61. a8=Q Ne1+ 62. Ke4 Nc2 63. Qa2 Ba5 64. Qxc2+ Bd2 65. Qxd2+ Kg1 66. Qh2#) 58. a7 Nf3 (58... Ng2 {doesn't get the bull off the ice} 59. a8=Q Nxe3 60. Bxe3 Kg2 61. Qa2+ Kh3 62. Kf3 Bg3 63. Qg2+ Kh4 64. Qxg3+ Kh5 65. Qg5#) 59. a8=Q Nh4 (59... Bf4 { is not the saving move} 60. Nf1+ Kg4 61. Qc8+ Kh5 62. Kxf4 Kg6 63. Qg8+ Kh6 64. Bf8+ Kh5 65. Qg4#) 60. Nf5+ (60. Be7 Nf3 61. Qg8+ Kf2 62. Qg2+ Ke1 63. Bb4+ Nd2+ 64. Bxd2#) 60... Kg4 (60... Kh2 {doesn't do any good} 61. Nxh4 Bg3 62. Kf3 Be1 63. Qg8 Bg3 64. Qxg3+ Kh1 65. Qg2#) 61. Qg8+ Kh3 62. Qh7 (62. Nxh4 Kxh4 63. Be7+ Kh3 64. Kf3 Bh2 65. Qg2#) 62... Bg3 (62... Bd8 {does not help much} 63. Nxh4 Kg4 64. Bf2 Kh3 65. Kf3 Bg5 66. Ng2+ Bh6 67. Qxh6#) 63. Be7 (63. Nxh4 Be1 64. Kf3 Bd2 65. Ng2+ Bh6 66. Qxh6#) 63... Kg2 (63... Bf2 {doesn't change the outcome of the game} 64. Nxh4 Be1 65. Kf3 Kh2 66. Qc2+ Bd2 67. Qxd2+ Kg1 68. Qg2#) 64. Nxh4+ (64. Bxh4 Be1 65. Bxe1 Kf1 66. Qh1+ Ke2 67. Nd4+ Kd1 68. Ba5#) 64... Kf2 65. Qf5+ Ke2 (65... Kg1 {does not solve anything} 66. Kf3 Kf1 67. Bc5 Bxh4 68. Qd3+ Ke1 69. Qe2#) 66. Qf3+ Kd2 67. Bb4+ (67. Qd3+ Ke1 68. Kf3 Bf2 69. Ng2#) 67... Kc2 (67... Kc1 {does not improve anything} 68. Qxg3 Kb1 69. Qc3 Ka2 70. Qc2+ Ka1 71. Bc3#) 68. Qc3+ Kb1 69. Ba3 Be5 70. Qxe5 (70. Kxe5 Ka2 71. Qb2# ) 70... Kc2 71. Bb4 (71. Qd4 Kxb3 72. Qb2+ Kc4 73. Qb4#) 71... Kd1 (71... Kxb3 {cannot change what is in store for White} 72. Bc5 Ka2 73. Qc3 Kb1 74. Qb3+ Ka1 75. Bd4#) 72. Qh2 (72. Qc3 Ke2 73. Qe1#) 72... Kc1 73. Bc3 (73. Bc3 Kb1 74. Qb2#) 1-0

19 Feb 2016

B22 Sicilian: 2.c3 (1.e4 e6 2.d4 c5 3.c3 Nc6)

B22 Sicilian: 2.c3 (1.e4 e6 2.d4 c5 3.c3 Nc6)

This was played on the third round of a rapid chess tournament at the FIDE Online Arena. On the first round of this tournament I won on time because my opponent did not make any moves. Then on the second round I lost because my opponent made better moves than me. It was nice to end this tournament with a win, but this tournament experiment did not bring me as close to the game requirement for the title as I would have liked. I was very determined to get the title on December 12th, so I continued playing at FOA after this game as long as it took to get the remaining games played.

The game below starts to go a bit wrong for my opponent with the move 7...Nxf3+, absolutes should have played 7...Ng6 instead, for instance. Due to my inaccuracy on move 10, I let my opponent off the hook a bit and the position evens out a bit again. Absolutes replies with 10...O-O-O, which is a blunder because I can take advantage of the fact that the queen and rook are on the same diagonal by playing Bg5. After Bg5 I am clearly better and after my opponent blunders even more with 18...Ng4, the game is completely lost for absolutes. The rest of the game is just a matter of style and technique on how one likes to finish the game. Until Monday, my fellow chess enthusiasts!

[Event "Tournament 35874027"] [Site "online arena"] [Date "2015.12.12"] [Round "3"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "absolutes"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B22"] [WhiteElo "1847"] [BlackElo "1552"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "49"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 e6 2. d4 c5 {Queen's Pawn Game: Franco-Sicilian Defense} 3. c3 (3. Nf3 cxd4 4. Nxd4 a6 5. Nc3 {Sicilian Defense: Kan Variation, Knight Variation}) 3... Nc6 {B22 Sicilian: 2.c3} (3... d5 4. e5 Nc6 5. Nf3 Qb6 6. a3 {French Defense: Advance Variation, Main Line}) 4. d5 exd5 5. exd5 Ne5 6. Bf4 (6. f4 Ng6 7. Nf3 d6 8. Bd3 Nf6 9. O-O Be7 10. c4 Bg4 11. h3 Bxf3 12. Qxf3 O-O 13. Nc3 Re8 14. Bd2 Nd7 15. Ne4 Nh4 16. Qf2 Nf5 17. Bc3 g6 18. a4 a6 19. a5 Ng7 20. f5 gxf5 {Braga,F (2455)-Florit Mulet,M Mallorca 2000 1-0}) 6... d6 (6... Bd6 7. Nh3 Qe7 8. Be2 Ng6 9. Bg5 Nf6 10. O-O Qe5 11. g3 h6 12. Bxf6 Qxf6 13. Bf3 O-O 14. Re1 Ne5 15. Bg2 Qf5 16. Nf4 b6 17. Be4 Qg5 18. Nd2 f5 19. Bg2 Rb8 20. a4 Ba6 21. Qc2 {Vallejos,J (1917)-Santa Isabel,M (1705) Sao Paulo 2014 1-0 (53)}) 7. Nf3 {N} (7. Be2 Ng6 8. Bg3 Nf6 9. Nf3 Be7 10. O-O O-O 11. Na3 Bg4 12. Re1 h6 13. Bd3 Ne5 14. Bxe5 dxe5 15. Rxe5 Bd6 16. Re1 Nxd5 17. Nb5 a6 18. Nxd6 Qxd6 19. c4 Rad8 20. cxd5 Qxd5 21. Be4 Qc4 {Gu,S (1837)-Christian,K Parramatta 2009 1-0 (65)}) 7... Nxf3+ 8. Qxf3 Bd7 9. Be2 Qf6 10. Qg3 (10. Nd2 g5 11. Qe3+ Be7 12. Bg3 {+/-}) 10... O-O-O (10... Ne7 {= and Black has air to breath}) 11. Bg5 {+/-} Qg6 12. Bxd8 Qxg3 13. hxg3 Kxd8 14. Bd3 Nf6 15. c4 g6 16. Nc3 a6 17. O-O-O Bg7 18. Ne4 (18. f3 {+/-}) 18... Ng4 $4 {causes further problems for White} (18... Nxe4 19. Bxe4 h5 {+/-}) 19. f3 (19. Nxd6 {makes it even easier for White} Kc7 20. Nxf7 Rf8 {+-}) 19... Ne3 $2 (19... Ne5 20. Nxd6 Kc7 21. Ne4 {+-}) 20. Rd2 (20. Rde1 {keeps an even firmer grip} f5 21. Nxd6 Kc7 22. Nxb7 Kxb7 23. Rxe3 Bf6 {+-}) 20... h5 $4 {Black crumbles in face of a dire situation } (20... Kc7 21. Ng5 h6 22. Nxf7 Rf8 23. Bxg6 Nxc4 {+-}) 21. Nxd6 Nf5 (21... Kc7 {desperation} 22. Nxf7 Rf8 23. d6+ Kb8 24. Bxg6 Nxc4 {+-}) 22. Bxf5 (22. Nxf7+ {seems even better} Kc7 23. Bxf5 Bxf5 24. Nxh8 Bxh8 {+-}) 22... Bxf5 ( 22... Ke7 {there is nothing better in the position} 23. Nxf7 $1 {Deflection: d7 } Kxf7 24. Bxd7 Be5 {+-}) 23. Nxf7+ Kd7 24. Nxh8 Bxh8 25. g4 $1 {Deflection: h5 } (25. g4 Bd3 26. Rxd3 {+-}) 1-0

18 Feb 2016

C18 French: 3.Nc3 Bb4 Main line, 7.h4 and 7.Qg4 (1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 c5 5.a3 Ba5)

C18 French: 3.Nc3 Bb4 Main line, 7.h4 and 7.Qg4 (1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 c5 5.a3 Ba5)

I was able to get so close to 1800 at the FIDE Online Arena before I lost a game again and the incline turned into a small decline. This was the 44th rapid game in a row where my rating was 1700 or above and I was only 6 games away from securing the title of Arena International Master. I had won four games in a row at FOA before this loss occured and I think it might be my best winning streak there, but I can't say it for certain without actually looking at my statistics in more detail. I think it would have been still possible to not get the title had I lost all my remaining games against much weaker opponents. That being said, I of course tried to play against similarly rated players or higher rated ones in order to ensure that my goal was reached.

The game below started to go wrong for me quite quickly as I played the silly 6.f4 and instead I should have played 6.Bd2. While f4 might not have been huge mistake, but instead a small inaccuracy, I should avoid that move in my future games if I can remember it that is. The first real blunder I play on move 8. I should have played 8.Qd3 instead of Qa4. 8.Qa4 is a novelty in the position, nobody had played that stupid move before, at least according to my reference database. Due to some inaccuracies, I found myself in a balanced position again after 10...Qxa5. However, I did not play the most accurate moves and I started to drift towards an inferior position. The position does even out a again until make my position worse again by playing 16.Bxd5. I should have castled instead.

My biggest troubles of the game start when make a really bad move 20.Kd2. It could have been the losing move, but due to a mistake by my opponent, 27...Nxb2+, I have some chances to draw this game again. The game does continue in Andrea's small advantage, but at least it is no longer winning after his 27th move. I get my last chance for the draw on move 31, but I do not see the right idea and instead played the losing move 31.Rb2. Andrea Martelli dominates the rest of the game and does not give me anymore chances for a draw.

[Event "Challenge 35876504"] [Site "online arena"] [Date "2015.12.12"] [Round "1"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "Martelli, Andrea"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "C18"] [WhiteElo "1798"] [BlackElo "1934"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "108"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 c5 5. a3 Ba5 {C18 French: 3.Nc3 Bb4: Main line: 7.h4 and 7.Qg4} 6. f4 (6. b4 cxd4 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Retreat Variation, Armenian Line}) 6... cxd4 7. Qxd4 Nc6 {Black threatens to win material: Nc6xd4} 8. Qa4 {N} (8. Bb5 Bd7 (8... Nge7 9. b4 Bb6 10. Qd3 a5 11. Rb1 axb4 12. axb4 O-O 13. Nf3 f6 14. exf6 Rxf6 15. Ne2 e5 16. fxe5 Bf5 17. Qb3 Re6 18. Nf4 Rxe5+ 19. Nxe5 Nxe5 20. Bd3 Nxd3+ 21. cxd3 Qd6 22. Ne2 Qg6 23. Nf4 {Ignacio,R-Clawitter,C (2082) San Diego 2012 0-1 (34)}) 9. Bxc6 Bxc6 (9... bxc6 10. Nf3 Ne7 11. Bd2 O-O 12. Qd3 c5 13. Ng5 Ng6 14. O-O h6 15. Nxf7 Kxf7 16. f5 exf5 17. Qxd5+ Ke8 18. e6 Bb5 19. Qb7 Rb8 20. Qxg7 Qd4+ 21. Qxd4 cxd4 22. Nxb5 Rxb5 23. a4 Re5 24. b4 {Fuchs,G (1965)-Malivanek,J (2195) Hradec Kralove 1994 1/2-1/2 (47)}) 10. Nf3 Nh6 11. Qd3 Nf5 12. Nd4 Nxd4 13. Qxd4 O-O 14. Bd2 Bb6 15. Qd3 d4 16. Ne4 Qh4+ 17. g3 Qh5 18. O-O f6 19. Bb4 Rf7 20. Nd6 Rd7 21. Rae1 a5 22. Bd2 Rxd6 {Martinez Lopez,C (1780)-Nunez Lucero,F (2178) Barcelona 2014 0-1}) (8. Qd1 Nge7 9. Bd2 a6 10. Nf3 O-O 11. b4 Bb6 12. Bd3 Ng6 13. Na4 Ba7 14. Nc5 Bxc5 15. bxc5 Qe7 16. O-O Qxc5+ 17. Kh1 b5 18. Qe1 Bb7 19. h3 Nge7 20. Bxh7+ Kxh7 21. Qh4+ Kg8 22. Ng5 Qxc2 {Da Silva Filho,J (1679) -Costa,E (1568) Joao Pessoa 2013 0-1 (33)}) (8. Qd3 d4 9. b4 dxc3 10. bxa5 Qxa5 {=/+}) 8... d4 (8... Bd7 $5 9. Bd2 Nge7 {+/-}) 9. b4 {=/+} dxc3 10. bxa5 { White has the pair of bishops} Qxa5 (10... Nge7 11. a6 {=}) 11. Qc4 (11. Qxa5 $5 {should be examined more closely} Nxa5 12. Ne2 {=}) 11... Nge7 {=/+} 12. Bd3 Qd5 13. Qe4 Qxe4+ 14. Bxe4 O-O 15. Ne2 Nd5 16. Bxd5 exd5 17. Nxc3 d4 18. Ne2 Bf5 {Black threatens to win material: Bf5xc2} 19. Ra2 Rac8 20. Kd2 $2 (20. Kf2 {=/+ and White could well hope to play on}) 20... Rfd8 (20... Na5 $5 21. Kd1 Rfd8 22. a4 {-+}) 21. Ng3 {+/-} Be6 22. Rb2 Na5 23. Rb4 (23. Ke2 Rd7 {-+}) 23... Nc4+ (23... d3 24. cxd3 Nb3+ 25. Rxb3 Bxb3 26. Ne4 {-+}) 24. Kd3 b6 25. Re1 a5 26. Rb1 g6 (26... Bd7 27. Rb3 {-+}) 27. Bb2 $2 (27. Re4 Nxa3 $1 { Black moves ahead of the opponent} 28. Bxa3 Rc3+ 29. Kd2 Rxa3 {+/-}) 27... Nxb2+ $4 {hands over the advantage to the opponent} (27... Bd7 {-+ would have given Black the upper hand}) 28. Rxb2 {=/+} Rc3+ {Black forks: a3} 29. Kd2 Rxa3 30. Rxb6 d3 (30... Ra2 {+/-}) 31. Rb2 $4 {allows the opponent back into the game} (31. Rd6 {is just about the only chance} Rxd6 32. exd6 dxc2 33. Ne4 {=}) 31... dxc2+ {-+} 32. Kxc2 Ra4 33. Ne4 $4 {a blunder in a bad position} (33. Rf1 {-+}) 33... Bf5 34. g3 (34. Kb3 {is no salvation} Rdd4 35. Nc5 Rdb4+ 36. Kc3 Rc4+ 37. Kb3 Bc2+ 38. Rxc2 Rab4+ 39. Ka3 Rxc2 {-+}) 34... Rxe4 (34... Bxe4+ 35. Rxe4 Rxe4 {-+}) 35. Rxe4 Bxe4+ 36. Kc1 (36. Kc3 {cannot change what is in store for White} Kg7 {-+}) 36... a4 37. Ra2 (37. Rb4 {cannot change destiny} Rc8+ 38. Kb2 Rc2+ 39. Ka3 Bf3 {-+}) 37... Rc8+ 38. Kd2 Ra8 39. Ke3 (39. Kc3 { does not improve anything} Bd5 40. Ra3 f6 {-+}) 39... Bd5 40. Ra3 Bb3 41. Kd4 ( 41. g4 {is not the saving move} Rc8 42. f5 Rc4 {-+}) 41... Rd8+ 42. Ke3 Kg7 43. h3 (43. g4 {hardly improves anything} Rd1 {-+}) 43... Rd1 44. Ke2 Rh1 45. h4 ( 45. Kf2 {-+ a last effort to resist the inevitable}) 45... h5 46. Kf3 Kf8 47. Ke4 Rg1 48. Kf3 Ke7 49. Kf2 Rb1 (49... Rd1 {it becomes clear that Black will call all the shots} 50. Ke3 Ke6 {-+}) 50. Kf3 Ke6 51. g4 hxg4+ 52. Kxg4 Rg1+ ( 52... Rf1 {makes sure everything is clear} 53. Kg5 {-+}) 53. Kf3 Rh1 54. Kg3 Kf5 (54... Kf5 55. Kf3 Rh3+ 56. Kg2 Rd3 57. Kf2 Rd2+ 58. Ke1 Ra2 59. Rxa2 Bxa2 60. e6 fxe6 61. Ke2 a3 62. Kd2 Bd5 63. Kc3 Ke4 64. f5 exf5 65. h5 gxh5 66. Kb4 a2 67. Kb5 a1=Q 68. Kb6 Ke5 69. Kb5 Qb2+ 70. Ka5 Bc6 71. Ka6 f4 72. Ka5 Qb5#) 0-1

17 Feb 2016

B15 Caro-Kann: 3.Nc3: 3...g6 and 3...dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Nxf6+ exf6 (1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 e6 4.Nf3 Nf6)

B15 Caro-Kann: 3.Nc3: 3...g6 and 3...dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Nxf6+ exf6 (1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 e6 4.Nf3 Nf6)

The game below was the 40th consecutive rapid game for me with a rating of 1700 or above at FIDE Online Arena and I needed to play 10 more games to receive my second official FIDE title. This was my second consecutive game against Costache Florin Remus and my sixth rapid game on December 8th. As far as I can remember, all of these games were played rather quickly. This certainly was a good thing as long as my results were good enough so that my rating did not drop alarmingly close to 1700 or below it which would have been a disaster as it would have reset the game counter again.

The first mistake of the game might have been when my opponent played 5...a6, it was better to play Be7 and get the development going. Costache is clearly behind in development after this, but because I did not play efficiently enough, my opponent was not punished so severely on his misplay. Then on move 8, I played Bh4 which gave the advantage I had to Costache. He does give that small advantage back immediately, so I survived my mistake without any punishment from my opponent. The next inaccuracy saw the light of day when I played 15.Ne5, which brings the game back to a balanced state. Costache replies with Rc8, which is a rather passive square for the rook, it was better to play c5 in order to open the long diagonal for the bishop. I foolishy replied with Ng4 because I wanted to trade the knights and perhaps get my queen to the kingside in order to get something going there.

Both players kept making bad moves, but when I played 21.c4, I suffered quite a long time until my opponent blundered the game away with the move 37...Re1. Between those two moves, I was at times completely lost. After the move of 37...Re1, I was not about to give my opponent any more chances and won the game with reasonable ease. I would like to mention one thing though, on move 49 Costache plays hxg3 and while that is the final mistake in my opinion, it might have been his best chance to get some counterplay. I did see though that I can force the trade of queens and then my b-pawn becomes unstoppable. Had I not traded queens at this point, I might have had some technical problems.

[Event "Challenge 35776694"] [Site "online arena"] [Date "2015.12.08"] [Round "1"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "florin remus, costache"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B15"] [WhiteElo "1768"] [BlackElo "1748"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "105"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 {Caro-Kann Defense} e6 (3... b5 {Caro-Kann Defense: Gurgenidze Counterattack}) (3... dxe4 4. Bc4 {Caro-Kann Defense: von Hennig Gambit} (4. f3 {Caro-Kann Defense: Rasa-Studier Gambit})) 4. Nf3 Nf6 {B15 Caro-Kann: 3.Nc3: 3...g6 and 3...dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Nxf6+ exf6} 5. Bd3 a6 { Black is behind in developement} (5... Bb4 6. e5 Nfd7 7. O-O c5 8. dxc5 Bxc5 9. Bg5 Qc7 10. Nb5 Qb6 11. b4 Bf8 12. a4 a5 13. bxa5 Qxa5 14. Qd2 Bb4 15. c3 Bc5 16. Nfd4 Nxe5 17. Nb3 Qb6 18. a5 Qc6 19. N5d4 Bxd4 20. cxd4 {Vaishali,R (2314) -Athul,K (2158) Bengaluru 2015 1-0 (52)}) 6. Bg5 {N} (6. O-O Qb6 7. exd5 cxd5 8. Re1 Bd6 9. Bg5 Nbd7 10. Qd2 O-O 11. Ne5 Qxb2 12. Rab1 Qa3 13. Rb3 Qa5 14. Nxd7 Nxd7 15. Qe2 Re8 16. Qh5 g6 17. Qh6 Bf8 18. Qh4 Bg7 19. Re3 e5 20. dxe5 Rxe5 {Capote Robayna,J (1705)-Monte Soto,J Gran Canaria 2009 0-1 (38)}) (6. O-O Be7 {+/-}) 6... Be7 7. O-O {Black has a cramped position} h6 {Black threatens to win material: h6xg5} 8. Bh4 (8. Be3 b5 {+/=}) 8... dxe4 (8... Nxe4 $5 { and Black is still in the game} 9. Bxe7 Nxc3 10. Bxd8 Nxd1 {=/+}) 9. Nxe4 {+/=} Nxe4 10. Bxe7 Qxe7 {Black is behind in development.} 11. Bxe4 Nd7 12. Bd3 (12. Qe2 O-O {+/=}) 12... Nf6 13. Re1 b5 14. c3 Bb7 15. Ne5 (15. b4 {+/=}) 15... Rc8 $2 (15... c5 16. a4 O-O 17. dxc5 Qxc5 18. h3 {=}) 16. Ng4 (16. b4 Rd8 {+/-}) 16... Nxg4 (16... c5 $5 {= looks like a viable alternative}) 17. Qxg4 {+/-} O-O 18. Qe4 (18. b4 Ra8 {+/-}) 18... g6 {+/=} 19. h4 (19. Qe3 $5 {should be examined more closely} c5 20. dxc5 Rxc5 21. Qxh6 {+/=}) 19... c5 {=} 20. d5 { White threatens to win material: d5xe6} (20. Qf4 cxd4 21. cxd4 Kg7 {=}) 20... Qf6 (20... Rfd8 21. Qf4 Rxd5 22. Be4 {+/-}) 21. c4 (21. Qe3 c4 22. Bf1 exd5 23. Qxh6 d4 24. cxd4 Rcd8 {=}) 21... Rfe8 (21... exd5 22. Qe7 Qxe7 23. Rxe7 {+/-}) 22. Qg4 (22. cxb5 Bxd5 23. Qe5 Qxe5 24. Rxe5 c4 {+/-}) 22... h5 (22... exd5 23. cxb5 c4 24. bxa6 Bxa6 25. Bf1 {+/-}) 23. Qg3 (23. Qg5 $5 Qxg5 24. hxg5 bxc4 25. d6 {+/-}) 23... exd5 24. cxb5 c4 25. bxa6 Bxa6 26. Bf1 d4 27. Qa3 (27. Qg5 Qxg5 28. hxg5 Rxe1 29. Rxe1 {-+}) 27... d3 28. Red1 (28. Rec1 Re4 29. Qc3 Qc6 30. Bxd3 cxd3 31. Qxc6 Rxc6 32. Rxc6 d2 {-+}) 28... Rcd8 (28... Re4 {seems even better} 29. Qc3 Qc6 {-+}) 29. g3 $4 {the final mistake, not that it matters anymore} (29. Qc3 Rd4 30. b3 {-+}) 29... Bb7 30. Bg2 Bxg2 31. Kxg2 Re2 32. Rf1 Qc6+ (32... Rxb2 {makes it even easier for Black} 33. Rad1 Qd4 {-+}) 33. Kg1 ( 33. Kh2 {does not win a prize} Qb6 34. Kg1 Rxb2 {-+}) 33... Rde8 (33... d2 { keeps an even firmer grip} 34. Qa5 Rd5 {-+}) 34. Qc3 (34. Qa7 {doesn't do any good} Rxb2 35. Qd4 Rbe2 {-+}) 34... Qd5 (34... R8e3 35. Qe5 Rxe5 36. a3 R5e3 37. Kh2 Qc7 38. Rad1 Qxg3+ 39. Kh1 Qxh4+ 40. Kg1 Qg4+ 41. Kh1 Rh3#) 35. b3 (35. Qc1 R8e4 36. Qg5 Re5 {-+}) 35... cxb3 (35... R8e3 $1 36. Kh2 Qd6 37. Kh1 Rxg3 38. Qe5 Qxe5 39. fxg3 Qd5+ 40. Rf3 Qxf3+ 41. Kg1 Qg2#) 36. axb3 {-+} d2 37. b4 Re1 (37... Kh7 {and Black has prevailed} 38. Rab1 R8e5 {-+}) 38. Rfxe1 {+/-} Rxe1+ $2 (38... dxe1=N $5 39. Rxe1 Rd8 {+/-}) 39. Rxe1 {+-} d1=Q $4 {Black crumbles in face of a dire situation.} (39... dxe1=Q+ 40. Qxe1 g5 41. hxg5 Qxg5 {+-}) 40. Rxd1 Qxd1+ 41. Kh2 Qf1 (41... g5 42. Qc8+ Kg7 43. hxg5 h4 44. Qc3+ Kg8 45. gxh4 Qd6+ 46. Kh3 Qd7+ 47. Kg3 Qd6+ 48. Kg2 Qf4 {+-}) 42. Qc5 Qa1 43. b5 Qa5 44. Qc6 Qa4 45. Qa6 (45. Qe8+ {and White takes home the point} Kg7 46. Qe5+ Kh7 {+-}) 45... Qd4 46. Qa8+ Kg7 47. Kg2 g5 48. hxg5 h4 49. Qc6 hxg3 50. Qf6+ $1 {a forceful and devastating end} Qxf6 51. gxf6+ Kxf6 52. b6 gxf2 (52... Kf5 {hardly improves anything} 53. b7 gxf2 54. Kxf2 Ke4 55. b8=Q Kf5 56. Qe8 Kf4 57. Qe3+ Kf5 58. Kf3 Kg6 59. Kf4 Kf6 60. Qe5+ Kg6 61. Qg5+ Kh7 62. Kf5 f6 63. Kxf6 Kh8 64. Qg7#) 53. b7 (53. b7 f1=Q+ 54. Kxf1 Ke5 55. b8=Q+ Kd4 56. Qa7+ Kd5 57. Qxf7+ Kd6 58. Kf2 Kc5 59. Qe6 Kb4 60. Ke2 Kc5 61. Kd3 Kb5 62. Kd4 Ka4 63. Qb6 Ka3 64. Kc3 Ka2 65. Qb2#) 1-0 [Event "Live Chess"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2016.07.18"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "Kojjootti"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B15"] [WhiteElo "1813"] [BlackElo "1709"] [Annotator "Stockfish 9 64 POPCNT (30s)"] [PlyCount "85"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 c6 4. Nf3 Nf6 {B15 Caro-Kann: 3.Nc3: 3...g6 and 3... dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Nxf6+ exf6} 5. Bg5 Be7 6. exd5 (6. Bxf6 Bxf6 7. Qd2 Nd7 8. O-O-O Qa5 9. Kb1 b6 10. Qf4 Ba6 11. Bxa6 Qxa6 12. exd5 cxd5 13. Nxd5 exd5 14. Rhe1+ Kd8 15. Ne5 Rf8 16. Nc6+ Kc8 17. Qd6 Qb7 18. Rd3 Rd8 19. Rc3 Bxd4 20. Ne7# {1-0 (20) Muzychuk,A (2560)-Gunina,V (2508) Khanty Mansiysk 2014}) (6. Bd3 Nbd7 7. e5 Ng8 8. Be3 Bb4 9. O-O h6 10. Ne2 Ne7 11. a3 Ba5 12. b4 Bc7 13. Ng3 b6 14. Qd2 c5 15. bxc5 bxc5 16. c3 Bb6 17. Nh5 Rg8 18. Bh7 Rh8 19. Nxg7+ Kf8 20. Bxh6 Rxh7 {Gallob,J (1808)-Hipfl,W (1955) Feffernitz 2017 1-0}) 6... exd5 $146 (6... Nxd5 7. Bxe7 Qxe7 8. Qd2 Nd7 9. O-O-O N7f6 10. Nxd5 cxd5 11. Qg5 O-O 12. Ne5 Qc7 13. Bd3 b5 14. Rhe1 Ne4 15. Qh4 f6 16. Rxe4 dxe4 17. Qxe4 fxe5 18. Qxh7+ Kf7 19. Bg6+ Kf6 20. Rd3 Bb7 21. Rg3 {Shivam,V (1680)-Athul,K (2158) Bengaluru 2015 0-1}) 7. Be2 (7. Bd3 O-O $11) 7... O-O $11 {Black castles and improves king safety} 8. O-O Ne4 (8... Bf5 9. Re1 $11) 9. Bxe7 $11 {White forks: f8+d8} Qxe7 10. Nxe4 (10. Re1 Nd6 $11) 10... dxe4 11. Ne5 (11. Ne1 Bf5 $11) 11... f6 (11... Nd7 12. Nc4 Nf6 $11) 12. Bc4+ (12. Nc4 Be6 $11) 12... Kh8 (12... Be6 13. Bxe6+ Qxe6 $15) 13. Ng4 $11 f5 14. Ne5 Nd7 15. f4 $2 (15. Nxd7 $5 Bxd7 16. f3 $11) 15... Nxe5 $15 16. fxe5 Qb4 (16... f4 $5 17. Qe2 e3 $17) 17. Bb3 $11 Rd8 {Black threatens to win material: Rd8xd4} (17... a5 18. a3 Qe7 19. Qd2 $11) 18. c3 {White threatens to win material: c3xb4} Qe7 19. Rf4 (19. Qd2 a5 20. a4 Be6 21. Bxe6 Qxe6 $11) 19... g5 {Black threatens to win material: g5xf4} (19... c5 20. Rf2 $11) 20. Rf1 Be6 (20... c5 21. Qe1 $14) 21. Bxe6 (21. Qh5 Rg8 22. Rae1 Raf8 $11) 21... Qxe6 $11 22. Qh5 {White threatens to win material: Qh5xg5} Rg8 {Black intends g4} 23. Rf2 $4 {gives the opponent counterplay} (23. Rae1 Raf8 $11) 23... Raf8 {Black plans f4} (23... f4 24. Rff1 $17) 24. a3 $4 {there were better ways to keep up the pressure} (24. Qe2 $142 $11 {and White has air to breath}) 24... f4 $17 25. Qe2 e3 26. Rff1 g4 (26... c5 27. Rad1 $17) 27. Rae1 g3 28. h3 Rg5 (28... a5 29. Qf3 Rf7 30. Qe4 $19) 29. Rf3 Rh5 $4 {spoils everything} (29... a5 30. Qd3 Kg7 31. a4 $17) 30. Ref1 (30. Rxf4 $1 {makes it even easier for White} Rxf4 31. Qxh5 Re4 $18) 30... Qh6 $4 { stumbles just before the finish line} (30... Rhf5 31. b4 $17) 31. Qc4 (31. Qxe3 $142 {keeps an even firmer grip} Rhf5 32. Qe4 $18) 31... Rxh3 $4 {gives away a clear win} (31... Rhf5 $142 $17) 32. gxh3 $18 Qxh3 33. Qe2 Rg8 (33... Qh6 { does not save the day} 34. Qg2 Rg8 35. Rxf4 $18) 34. Qg2 Qxg2+ (34... Qh6 { hoping against hope} 35. Rxf4 e2 36. Qxe2 g2 37. Qxg2 Rxg2+ 38. Kxg2 Qh5 $18) 35. Kxg2 e2 36. Re1 Rg4 37. Rxe2 Rh4 (37... Kg8 {is not the saving move} 38. Re4 Kf8 39. Rfxf4+ Rxf4 40. Rxf4+ Ke7 41. Rh4 h5 42. Rxh5 b6 43. Rh6 b5 44. Rxc6 b4 45. axb4 a6 46. Rxa6 Kf8 47. Ra7 Kg8 48. e6 Kf8 49. d5 Ke8 50. d6 Kf8 51. Rf7+ Kg8 52. d7 Kh8 53. d8=Q#) 38. Kg1 (38. Re4 Rh2+ 39. Kg1 Rxb2 40. e6 Rb1+ 41. Rf1 Rxf1+ 42. Kxf1 Kg7 43. e7 f3 44. Re6 g2+ 45. Kg1 f2+ 46. Kxf2 c5 47. e8=Q g1=Q+ 48. Kxg1 c4 49. Qd7+ Kh8 50. Re8#) 38... Rg4 (38... Kg8 { does not win a prize} 39. Re4 Kf7 40. Rexf4+ Rxf4 41. Rxf4+ Ke6 42. Rf6+ Kd7 43. Rh6 a6 44. Rxh7+ Ke6 45. Rxb7 g2 46. Rb6 Kd7 47. d5 cxd5 48. Rxa6 d4 49. cxd4 Ke7 50. Rd6 Kf8 51. b4 Ke7 52. b5 Kf8 53. b6 Ke7 54. b7 Kf8 55. b8=Q+ Ke7 56. Qc7+ Kf8 57. Rd8#) 39. Re4 h5 40. Rexf4 (40. e6 Kh7 41. Rexf4 Rg6 42. Rf7+ Kg8 43. Rf8+ Kh7 44. R3f7+ Kh6 45. e7 Re6 46. Rf6+ Rxf6 47. Rxf6+ Kg5 48. Rf7 g2 49. e8=Q a5 50. Qg8+ Kh4 51. Qxg2 a4 52. Rf4#) 40... Rxf4 (40... Rg6 { a fruitless try to alter the course of the game} 41. Kg2 h4 42. Rxh4+ Kg7 43. Rhf4 c5 44. Rxg3 c4 45. e6 a6 46. Rxg6+ Kxg6 47. e7 a5 48. e8=Q+ Kg5 49. Rf7 a4 50. Qg8+ Kh6 51. Rh7#) 41. Rxf4 Kg7 42. Kg2 (42. e6 h4 43. e7 h3 44. e8=Q h2+ 45. Kg2 h1=Q+ 46. Kxh1 g2+ 47. Kxg2 c5 48. Qe6 c4 49. Rf7+ Kh8 50. Qc8#) 42... Kg6 (42... Kh6 {doesn't change the outcome of the game} 43. e6 Kg5 44. Rf8 h4 45. e7 h3+ 46. Kxg3 h2 47. Kxh2 c5 48. e8=Q c4 49. Qe6 a6 50. Rf5+ Kh4 51. Qe4# ) 43. Kxg3 (43. Kxg3 Kg5 44. Rf8 h4+ 45. Kh3 c5 46. e6 c4 47. e7 Kg6 48. e8=Q+ Kg7 49. Qe7+ Kh6 50. Qf6+ Kh7 51. Rh8#) 1-0 [Event "Live Chess"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2016.07.21"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "Kojjootti"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B15"] [WhiteElo "1817"] [BlackElo "1700"] [Annotator "Tactical Analysis 2.10 (30s)"] [PlyCount "51"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 e6 4. Nf3 Nf6 {B15 Caro-Kann: 3.Nc3: 3...g6 and 3... dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Nxf6+ exf6} 5. Bg5 Be7 6. e5 Nfd7 $1 7. Bxe7 Qxe7 8. Bd3 { The position is equal.} c5 {1.12/25} (8... O-O $11 {0.20/28}) (8... a6 9. O-O ( 9. Na4 Qb4+ 10. c3 Qa5 11. b4 Qc7 12. Ng5 b5 13. Nc5 Nxc5 14. bxc5 h6 15. Qh5 Rf8 16. Nf3 Qa5 17. Kd2 Qc7 18. Qg4 g6 19. Qf4 h5 20. Ng5 Qe7 21. h4 a5 22. a3 a4 23. Rh3 f5 {Sobek,M (1898)-Slaby,J (1788) Slovakia 2016 1/2-1/2 (44)}) 9... c5 10. dxc5 Nxc5 11. a3 Nxd3 12. cxd3 b5 13. Nd4 Bb7 14. Nce2 Nd7 15. f4 O-O 16. Qd2 Rac8 17. Qe3 Rfe8 18. Rae1 Nf8 19. Kh1 Rc7 20. Ng1 Ng6 21. Ngf3 Bc8 22. Rc1 Bb7 {1-0 (22) Colovic,A (2460)-Panoski,S Struga 2005}) 9. dxc5 $146 { 0.19/32} (9. Nb5 $16 {1.12/25 Nc7+ is the strong threat.} Kd8 (9... c4 10. Nd6+ Kd8 11. Be2 Nc6 12. Qd2 f6 13. Qc3 fxe5 14. Nxe5 Ncxe5 15. dxe5 Rf8 16. g3 g5 17. Rf1 Qg7 18. f4 Qh6 19. fxg5 Rxf1+ 20. Bxf1 Qg7 21. O-O-O Qxg5+ 22. Kb1 Qh5 23. Rd2 Kc7 24. Nb5+ {Manyoki,A (2079)-Miovecz,B (1931) Hungary 2009 1-0 (58)}) 10. c4) 9... Nxc5 10. O-O Nc6 11. Nb5 O-O 12. Re1 a6 13. Nbd4 Qc7 $2 {3.39/25 [#]} (13... Nxd3 $11 {0.18/28 and Black stays safe.} 14. Qxd3 Bd7) 14. c3 $2 { 0.20/29} ({White has to play} 14. Bxh7+ $1 $18 {3.39/25} Kh8 (14... Kxh7 15. Ng5+) 15. Nxc6 bxc6 16. Ng5) 14... Nxd3 $11 15. Qxd3 h6 16. Nxc6 (16. Rac1 { is interesting.} Ne7 17. g3 Bd7 18. Kg2 Rfc8 19. Qe3) 16... bxc6 17. Qd4 { -0.55/27} ({White should try} 17. c4 $11 {0.00/28}) 17... c5 $15 18. Qg4 Bb7 19. Rad1 Rad8 20. Nh4 Qc6 {0.00/32} (20... d4 $15 {-0.44/23 should be considered.}) 21. Re3 $11 Rd7 {0.42/26} (21... Kh8 $11 {0.00/32 is superior.}) 22. Rg3 $1 $14 g6 $2 {#10/26 [#]} (22... f5 $14 {0.33/28} 23. exf6 Rxf6) 23. Nxg6 $1 {White mates.} fxg6 24. Qxg6+ Kh8 25. Qxh6+ Rh7 26. Qxf8# {Precision: White = 54%, Black = 30%.} 1-0

16 Feb 2016

D02 1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 sidelines, including 2...Nf6 3.g3 and 2...Nf6 3.Bf4 (1.Nf3 Nf6 2.g3 d5 3.Bg2 c5 4.O-O Nc6 5.d4 cxd4 6.Nxd4 e5 7.Nxc6 bxc6 8.c4 Be6)

D02 1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 sidelines, including 2...Nf6 3.g3 and 2...Nf6 3.Bf4 (1.Nf3 Nf6 2.g3 d5 3.Bg2 c5 4.O-O Nc6 5.d4 cxd4 6.Nxd4 e5 7.Nxc6 bxc6 8.c4 Be6)

As my hunt for the title continued on December 8th, I ended up playing seven games during this same day. The game below was my fifth game of the day. I really wanted to get the game requirement for the Arena International Master title done as soon as possible and now that the first four games seemed to be over quickly, I thought that I might as well play more games and see if the other ones are over as quickly as the four previous ones were. As this was my 39th rapid game, I still needed to play 11 games in a decent manner to obtain the new title. Losing this game did not really bring my confidence up, but the doubt began to grow whether or not I am going to mess things up again. I did end up playing two more games against Costache Florin Remus on December 8th and those went well enough that I thought I am able to do this without any problems and it is in fact only matter of playing the games I had left in order to achieve my goal. Admittedly nothing was certain at this point, had I lost enough games in a row, the game counter would have reset again.

In theory the move order for this opening is 1.Nf3 d5 2.g3 Nf6. The first mistake of the game is seen when I played 9...e4, I am not sure why I played it to be honest. I should have played maybe Rc8 or Qd7 instead of e4. My opponent follows the right path until he plays 12.Qa5 which gives me some breathing room and the position is about even after that. Had he taken on d7, my position would have looked quite bad. The next clear disturbance in the balance came when I played 18...Rc7, which tips the balance in favor of my opponent. Stockfish seems to think that I should have pushed my h-pawn forward instead. When I played 21...a5, my position went further down the drain. The balance is restored immediately with the reply 22.Nf5, much better was Ne2 according to Stockfish. After this, I blunder the game away with 22...Rb8. Costache plays the rest of the game accurately enough, so that I am no longer able to bring the game in balance and I pretty much have to resign after he played 45.Qf4 because all my counterplay options are exhausted with that move.

[Event "Challenge 35776161"] [Site "online arena"] [Date "2015.12.08"] [Round "1"] [White "florin remus, costache"] [Black "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "D02"] [WhiteElo "1737"] [BlackElo "1779"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "89"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. Nf3 Nf6 2. g3 d5 {King's Indian Attack: Yugoslav Variation (#2)} 3. Bg2 c5 ( 3... c6 4. O-O Bg4 {King's Indian Attack: Yugoslav Variation}) (3... e6 4. c4 Be7 5. d4 {Catalan Opening: Closed Variation}) 4. O-O Nc6 5. d4 cxd4 6. Nxd4 e5 7. Nxc6 bxc6 8. c4 Be6 {D02 1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 sidelines, including 2...Nf6 3.g3 and 2...Nf6 3.Bf4} 9. Nc3 e4 (9... Qd7 10. Qa4 Rc8 (10... h6 11. cxd5 cxd5 12. Qxd7+ Kxd7 13. Rd1 Kc6 14. Be3 Bb4 15. Rac1 Bxc3 16. Rxc3+ Kd6 17. Rdc1 Rhb8 18. Rc7 Nd7 19. b3 g5 20. Bxa7 Rb5 21. b4 e4 22. R1c6+ Ke5 23. a3 Nb8 24. Bxb8 Rbxb8 25. Rc3 {Buyukasik,D (2074)-Erdogan,H (2200) Kocaeli 2015 1-0 (56)}) 11. cxd5 cxd5 12. Qxd7+ Kxd7 13. Rd1 Bc5 14. Na4 Bd6 15. Bg5 Rc2 16. Bxf6 gxf6 17. Bxd5 Rhc8 18. Rd3 Rxe2 19. Bf3 Rec2 20. Rad1 R8c6 21. Bxc6+ Rxc6 22. Nc5+ Rxc5 23. Rxd6+ Ke7 24. Ra6 {Janocha,W (2405)-Goj,A (2295) Lubniewice 1994 1-0}) 10. cxd5 cxd5 11. Qa4+ {N} (11. Bg5 Be7 12. Qa4+ Qd7 13. Qxd7+ Nxd7 14. Bxe7 Kxe7 15. Rfd1 Nb6 16. Nb5 Rhc8 17. Rac1 Rxc1 18. Rxc1 Rc8 19. Rxc8 Nxc8 20. Kf1 a6 21. Nd4 Kd6 22. Ke1 Bd7 23. Kd2 Ke5 24. e3 Nd6 25. Bf1 Bb5 {Kiesekamp,M (2231) -Hahlbohm,M (2065) Berlin 2006 1-0 (40)}) 11... Qd7 12. Qa5 (12. Qxd7+ Kxd7 13. Rd1 Bd6 {+/-}) 12... Be7 (12... Rb8 {=}) 13. Nb5 (13. Rd1 $5 {+/= is an interesting alternative}) 13... O-O {=/+ Black castles and improves king safety } 14. Nd4 {The knight feels good on d4} Bh3 (14... Rab8 15. Qd2 {=/+}) 15. b3 Bxg2 16. Kxg2 {White king safety dropped} Rfc8 17. Ba3 Bxa3 18. Qxa3 Rc7 (18... h5 19. Qa5 {=}) 19. Rac1 Rac8 20. Rxc7 {White forks: a7+d7} Qxc7 21. e3 a5 ( 21... Ng4 22. b4 {+/=}) 22. Nf5 (22. Ne2 Qc5 23. Qb2 {+/-}) 22... Rb8 $4 (22... Qc5 {and Black hangs on} 23. Qb2 Kf8 {+/=}) 23. h3 (23. Rc1 Qd7 24. Nd4 a4 25. bxa4 h5 {+-}) 23... g6 24. Rc1 Qe5 $4 {an oversight. But Black was lost anyway. } (24... Qd8 25. Ne7+ Kg7 {+-}) 25. Ne7+ Kg7 26. Nc6 Qc7 (26... Qe8 {doesn't improve anything} 27. Nxb8 Qxb8 28. Qxa5 {+-}) 27. Nxb8 Qxb8 28. Qxa5 Qe5 ( 28... d4 {does not win a prize} 29. exd4 Qd6 30. Qe5 {+-}) 29. Qc7 (29. a4 $5 { makes it even easier for White} Qf5 30. Qc3 h6 {+-}) 29... Qb2 (29... Qf5 { doesn't change the outcome of the game} 30. Qf4 Qe6 31. a4 {+-}) 30. Qc2 Qe5 31. Qc7 {Twofold repetition} Qb2 32. a4 (32. Rc6 {keeps an even firmer grip} Qe2 33. Qf4 Nh5 34. Qe5+ Kh6 {+-}) 32... Qxb3 (32... d4 {a last effort to resist the inevitable} 33. Qc2 Qa3 34. exd4 h5 {+-}) 33. a5 Qa2 34. Qc3 Qa4 35. Ra1 Qd7 36. a6 Qf5 (36... Qa7 {doesn't change anything anymore} 37. Qd4 Qxd4 38. exd4 Ne8 39. a7 Nc7 40. Rc1 Na8 41. Rc8 Nb6 42. Rb8 e3 43. Rxb6 e2 44. Rb1 g5 45. a8=Q g4 46. hxg4 e1=R 47. Rxe1 h6 48. Qe8 h5 49. gxh5 f6 50. Re7+ Kh6 51. Qg6#) 37. Qe1 (37. a7 Kh6 38. a8=Q Nd7 39. Qd4 f6 40. Ra7 Ne5 41. Qf8+ Kg5 42. Rxh7 Qf3+ 43. Kg1 Qxg3+ 44. fxg3 Nf3+ 45. Kg2 Nxd4 46. Qd6 Ne6 47. Qxe6 d4 48. Qg4#) 37... Qf3+ 38. Kg1 h5 39. Qd1 Qf5 40. a7 Qxh3 (40... Qe5 {is not much help} 41. a8=Q h4 42. g4 d4 43. Ra7 dxe3 44. Qb3 exf2+ 45. Kf1 Qa1+ 46. Rxa1 e3 47. Qxe3 Kh7 48. Qh8+ Kxh8 49. Qh6+ Kg8 50. Ra8+ Ne8 51. Rxe8#) 41. a8=Q Ng4 (41... Qf5 {does not solve anything} 42. Qb8 Ng4 43. Qd4+ f6 44. f4 exf3 45. Ra7+ Kh6 46. Qbf4+ Qxf4 47. Qxf4+ g5 48. Qc7 f2+ 49. Kf1 Nxe3+ 50. Kxf2 Nd1+ 51. Kg1 d4 52. Qh7#) 42. Qxg4 (42. Qd4+ Nf6 43. Qh8+ Kxh8 44. Qxf6+ Kh7 45. Ra8 Qh2+ 46. Kxh2 d4 47. Qh8#) 42... Qxg4 {+-} ({Less advisable is} 42... hxg4 43. Ra7 Qh8 44. Rxf7+ Kxf7 45. Qxh8 g5 46. Qh7+ Ke6 47. Qc7 d4 48. exd4 Kd5 49. Qb6 Kc4 50. Qc5+ Kb3 51. d5 e3 52. fxe3 Ka2 53. d6 Ka1 54. d7 Kb1 55. d8=Q Ka1 56. Qc1+ Ka2 57. Qd5#) 43. Qxd5 h4 44. Qe5+ (44. Qd4+ Kh7 45. Ra8 f6 46. Rd8 Qe6 47. f4 Kh6 48. Qa7 Kh5 49. Qh7+ Kg4 50. Qxh4+ Kf3 51. Qh1+ Kxe3 52. Qg2 Qa2 53. Qxa2 Kf3 54. Qg2+ Kg4 55. Qxe4 f5 56. Qg2 g5 57. Rg8 Kh5 58. Qh3#) 44... Kh7 45. Qf4 (45. Qf4 Qf3 46. Qxh4+ Kg7 47. Ra8 Qd1+ 48. Kh2 Qh5 49. Qxh5 gxh5 50. Ra6 Kf8 51. Kh3 Ke7 52. Kh4 Kd7 53. Kxh5 Kc7 54. g4 Kd7 55. g5 Kc7 56. Ra7+ Kb6 57. Rxf7 Kb5 58. g6 Kc4 59. g7 Kd3 60. g8=Q Ke2 61. Qg1 Kd3 62. Rc7 Kd2 63. Qc1+ Ke2 64. Rc2+ Kf3 65. Qh1#) 1-0

15 Feb 2016

A34 Symmetrical English: 2.Nc3, lines with ...d5 (1.c4 c5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.g3 e6 4.Bg2 a6 5.Nf3 Nf6 6.O-O Be7 7.d4 cxd4 8.Nxd4)

A34 Symmetrical English: 2.Nc3, lines with ...d5 (1.c4 c5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.g3 e6 4.Bg2 a6 5.Nf3 Nf6 6.O-O Be7 7.d4 cxd4 8.Nxd4)

For quite some time now, I have only posted my correspondence games, but today and actually the rest of this week will mainly feature rapid games that were played at the FIDE Online Arena. These games were part of my journey towards the title of Arena International Master. This was my 36th game of the 50 rapid games requirement of the title. This is also the fourth game in a row against Hermie Cagatin, which was also the last game we played on December 8th 2015. Nor have we played since, at least to my knowledge that is. I know that we have not played at FOA, but we might have played somewhere else where my opponent could have used a handle and not used his real name. It is very likely that these four games are the only four games we have ever played, but obviously I lack information to confirm that without a shadow of a doubt. This is the only one of the four games we played where the winner was the player with the white pieces, all other games were won by the player with the black pieces. I won three out of the four games and lost one.

[Event "Challenge 35775044"] [Site "online arena"] [Date "2015.12.08"] [Round "1"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "Cagatin, Hermie"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "A34"] [WhiteElo "1770"] [BlackElo "1743"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "81"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. c4 c5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. g3 {English Opening: Symmetrical Variation, Fianchetto Variation} e6 (3... g6 4. Bg2 Bg7 5. e3 (5. e4 {English Opening: Symmetrical Variation, Botvinnik System}) (5. Nf3 e5 {English Opening: Symmetrical Variation, Botvinnik System Reversed}) 5... e5 {English Opening: Symmetrical Variation, Botvinnik System Reversed}) 4. Bg2 a6 5. Nf3 Nf6 6. O-O Be7 7. d4 cxd4 8. Nxd4 {A34 Symmetrical English: 2.Nc3, lines with ...d5} Ne5 (8... Qc7 9. b3 O-O 10. Be3 d6 11. Rc1 Ng4 12. Nxc6 bxc6 13. Bd2 Rb8 14. c5 d5 15. e4 Nf6 16. exd5 Nxd5 17. Bxd5 cxd5 18. Bf4 Qa7 19. Bxb8 Qxb8 20. Na4 Qc7 21. Qd4 Bb7 22. c6 Bxc6 23. Qb6 {Ftacnik,L (2470)-Pinter,J (2535) Hastings 1980 1-0 (61)}) 9. b3 O-O 10. Bb2 Rb8 {N} (10... Qc7 11. Rc1 Bc5 12. Na4 Be7 13. c5 Nc6 14. a3 Nxd4 15. Qxd4 d5 16. cxd6 Qxd6 17. Qxd6 Bxd6 18. Rfd1 Be7 19. Nb6 Rd8 20. Rxd8+ Bxd8 21. Nxa8 Bd7 22. Rd1 Nd5 23. Bxd5 exd5 24. Rxd5 {1-0 (24) Mertens,K (2075) -Schett,F (1943) Seefeld 2008}) 11. Qd2 Bc5 (11... d6 12. e3 {+/=}) 12. Ne4 ( 12. Rad1 $5 {+/-}) 12... Nxe4 {+/=} 13. Bxe4 f5 $2 (13... d6 14. Rac1 {+/=}) 14. Bg2 (14. Nxf5 $5 exf5 15. Bxe5 {+-}) 14... Ng4 (14... d6 15. e3 {+/=}) 15. h3 {+/-} Nxf2 $2 (15... Nh6 {+/-}) 16. Rxf2 {+-} (16. Kxf2 $6 e5 {+/-}) 16... e5 17. e3 $4 {with this move White loses his initiative} (17. Nf3 {it becomes clear that White will call all the shots} d6 18. e3 {+-}) 17... exd4 {+/-} 18. exd4 Bd6 (18... Be7 19. Re1 d6 20. Rfe2 {+/-}) 19. Bd5+ (19. Qd3 b5 20. Rxf5 Bb7 21. Bxb7 Rxb7 {+-}) 19... Kh8 {+/-} 20. Kg2 (20. Qd3 Be7 21. Rxf5 Rxf5 22. Qxf5 d6 {+-}) 20... b5 (20... f4 21. gxf4 b5 22. Raf1 {+/-}) 21. Raf1 (21. c5 Bc7 {+/-}) 21... bxc4 22. bxc4 f4 23. gxf4 Bb4 24. Qd3 Bb7 25. Qf3 (25. Bxb7 $5 Rxb7 26. c5 {+/-}) 25... Bxd5 {+/= Black forks: c4+f3} 26. Qxd5 ({Inferior is} 26. cxd5 Rf5 {=/+}) 26... Qh4 $2 {Attacks the isolated pawn on f4} (26... Re8 { +/= is a viable option}) 27. Qxd7 {+-} Rbd8 (27... Qf6 28. Qg4 {+-}) 28. Qg4 Qh6 (28... Qf6 29. f5 {+-}) 29. d5 Bc5 (29... Qg6 {doesn't get the bull off the ice} 30. Qxg6 hxg6 31. f5 gxf5 32. Rxf5 Rxf5 33. Rxf5 {+-}) 30. Re2 Rd6 ( 30... Qg6 {does not save the day} 31. Qxg6 hxg6 32. Re6 {+-}) 31. Re6 Rxe6 32. Qxe6 Qh4 (32... Qxe6 {hardly improves anything} 33. dxe6 Kg8 34. f5 {+-}) 33. Qg4 (33. d6 {secures victory} Qd8 34. d7 Qb6 35. Qxb6 Bxb6 {+-}) 33... Qe7 34. Be5 (34. Re1 {keeps an even firmer grip} Qb7 35. Bc3 Qf7 {+-}) 34... Rg8 (34... Kg8 {cannot change destiny} 35. Rd1 Rd8 36. Re1 {+-}) 35. Rf3 Qf7 (35... Bd6 { cannot change what is in store for White} 36. Re3 Qc7 37. Qe2 {+-}) 36. Qe6 Qb7 (36... Qxe6 {is not much help} 37. dxe6 h5 38. Rd3 {+-}) 37. Rb3 Qa7 38. Rg3 Qb7 (38... Bd4 {doesn't change anything anymore} 39. Qg4 {+-}) 39. Kf3 (39. Bxg7+ Qxg7 40. Rxg7 Kxg7 41. Kf3 Rd8 42. Qe5+ Kf7 43. Qh5+ Kf8 44. Qh6+ Kf7 45. Qxh7+ Kf8 46. Qf5+ Ke7 47. Qe6+ Kf8 48. Qf6+ Ke8 49. Qc6+ Ke7 50. Qxc5+ Kd7 51. d6 Re8 52. Qc7+ Ke6 53. d7 Ra8 54. d8=Q Rxd8 55. Qxd8 a5 56. a4 Kf7 57. f5 Kg7 58. Qe7+ Kh8 59. f6 Kg8 60. Qg7#) 39... a5 (39... Qb4 {is the last straw} 40. Qxa6 Bf8 {+-}) 40. Rxg7 $1 {Deflection: e8} Rxg7 (40... Rxg7 41. Qe8+ {Mate attack Deflection}) 41. Qe8+ (41. Qe8+ Bf8 42. Qxf8#) 1-0

12 Feb 2016

C52 Evans Gambit Accepted: 5.c3 Ba5 (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4 Bxb4 5.c3 Ba5 6.d4 exd4 7.O-O dxc3 8.Qb3 Qf6)

C52 Evans Gambit Accepted: 5.c3 Ba5 (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4 Bxb4 5.c3 Ba5 6.d4 exd4 7.O-O dxc3 8.Qb3 Qf6)

This is the 10th game I have played at ChessRex and it is my first and so far the only loss on the site. I have played both chess and chess960 games there and this is the sixth chess game from there. It is also my latest chess game from ChessRex. In addition to these six chess games, I have so far played seven chess960 games there. In chess960 I am at this moment undefeated there, but I am sure that day will come when someone outplays me in this chess variant. It has happened many times on other sites and only time will tell when it happens at ChessRex. Both players had seven days to use for each of their moves and I probably should have used more of it during this game in order to get a better result. This game started January 7th 2016 and finished on January 30th 2016.

From time to time I ran into opening variations that I think I have already covered, but when I look at what I have posted, there is no evidence of an earlier occasion where that opening variation would have been posted. One of the times this has happened was with this particular opening. Sometimes I briefly think that I have just accidently deleted the post that contained the variation I thought that I had already posted, but maybe the more realistic reason is a false memory of such a post. Those false memories probably are due the fact that I search for other similar opening variations for each game I post and those opening variations have appeared in the analysis, but are not the actual variations played in the games.

Despite from the name of the opening, this actually is a reasonable way to play as the position is evaluated about even at least according to Stockfish. The first disturbance in the balance comes when I play 16...Nf5 which is a really bad move. This move did not lose the game even though it could have been the reason for the loss if dominick1952 would have replied correctly. He made a horrible move instead that could have brought me back into the game, but I blundered a second time in a row. This time my opponent was able to play well enough that he did not allow me to get back into the game anymore. I was only able to make dominick1952's job easier in the remaining moves and I had to accept defeat after I saw the move 23.Qh3. Until Monday, my fellow chess and chess960 enthusiasts!

[Event "game id 37751"] [Site "http://ChessRex.com"] [Date "2016.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "dominick1952"] [Black "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C52"] [WhiteElo "1933"] [BlackElo "1639"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "45"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. b4 Bxb4 5. c3 Ba5 6. d4 exd4 7. O-O dxc3 { Italian Game: Evans Gambit, Compromised Defense} 8. Qb3 Qf6 {C52 Evans Gambit Accepted: 5.c3 Ba5} 9. Bg5 (9. e5 Qg6 10. Nxc3 Nge7 11. Ba3 {Italian Game: Evans Gambit, Compromised Defense, Main Line}) 9... Qg6 10. Nxc3 Bxc3 11. Qxc3 Nge7 (11... Nh6 12. Bf4 d6 13. Nh4 Qg4 14. Bxh6 Rg8 15. Nf5 Bxf5 16. h3 Qh4 17. exf5 gxh6 18. Bd5 Kf8 19. Rab1 Nd4 20. Qxc7 {1-0 (20) Poetsch,H (2472)-Maier,A (2311) Bad Wiessee 2013}) (11... Nf6 12. e5 Ne4 13. Qe3 Nxg5 14. Nxg5 Nd8 15. Bd3 Qb6 16. Qg3 h6 17. Rab1 Qd4 18. Ne4 Ne6 19. Rbc1 Ng5 20. Nxg5 hxg5 21. Rc4 Qb6 22. Qxg5 Qh6 23. Qg3 c6 24. Re1 b5 25. Rg4 Bb7 26. Rxg7 {Contreras,H (2212) -Manrique,F (2034) Medellin 2014 1-0}) 12. e5 O-O 13. Bd3 {White threatens to win material: Bd3xg6} Qe6 {N} (13... Qh5 {+/=}) 14. Rfe1 b6 15. Bh4 (15. Bc4 Qg6 {=}) 15... h6 {Black has a cramped position} (15... Ng6 16. Ng5 Qg4 17. Re4 {=}) 16. Rad1 (16. Bc4 Qg6 17. Bd3 {=}) 16... Nf5 $4 {Black lets it slip away} (16... Ng6 17. Bc4 Qf5 18. h3 Nxh4 19. Nxh4 {=}) 17. Bc4 $4 {White threatens to win material: Bc4xe6. White loses the upper hand} (17. Bf6 Na5 18. Re4 d6 { +/-}) 17... Qe8 $4 {gives the opponent new chances} (17... Qg6 {=/+ would keep Black alive}) 18. Bd5 (18. Bf6 $5 {+-}) 18... Bb7 {+/-} 19. Bf6 g6 $4 {causes even greater problems} (19... Qc8 20. Qc4 Nce7 21. Bxb7 Qxb7 {+/-}) 20. g4 {+-} Nfe7 21. Be4 Kh7 (21... Nd4 {is one last hope} 22. Bxb7 Ne6 23. Bxa8 c6 {+-}) 22. Ng5+ $1 {Clearance: f3} Kg8 (22... hxg5 23. Qh3+ {Mate attack Clearance}) 23. Qh3 (23. Qh3 Nf5 24. Bxf5 Nxe5 25. Qxh6 Nf3+ 26. Nxf3 Qxe1+ 27. Nxe1 b5 28. Qh8#) 1-0

11 Feb 2016

C68 Spanish Game: Exchange Variation, sidelines (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Bc4 Bc5)

C68 Spanish Game: Exchange Variation, sidelines (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Bc4 Bc5)

This was played at ChessRex between December 30th 2015 and January 19th 2016. The thinking times were 7 days per move for this game. This was my 9th game on the site and also my 9th win. My first and so far the only loss came in the 10th game, but more about that tomorrow when I share that game. I am currently rated 1661 and I think am currently the 55th highest rated player at ChessRex. The highest rated member of the site is rated 2332, so I have still quite a long way to go if I want to be the highest rated player on the site. I am actually quite ambitious, so I will do my best to get a better rating and because of that a better ranking among other members.

The balance in the game below is first disturbed when my opponent played 7.Qf3. Other options were better like a4 and c3. The position goes a bit more dire for my opponent already in his next move. I am unable to maintain or increase my advantage for very long and the advantage dissipates completely after 10...Ne6. Georg makes a mistake on the next move that allows me to fight for the advantage again. I am able to keep my advantage for a few moves again, but then I make two blunders in a row and I start to be in a losing position after the move 18...Ne7. Couple of bad moves are played by both sides starting from the move 20.f4 and the advantage shifts back and forth between the players. The move that finally lost the game was 22.Nxf7, after that I was able to play well enough to keep the advantage I gained from this blunder by my opponent and won the game by my opponent's resignation.

[Event "game id 37662"] [Site "http://ChessRex.com"] [Date "2016.01.19"] [Round "?"] [White "Georg"] [Black "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "C68"] [WhiteElo "1737"] [BlackElo "1658"] [Annotator "Stockfish 6 64 BMI2 (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "52"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 {Spanish Game} 4. Bc4 (4. Ba4 Nf6 (4... b5 5. Bb3 Bc5 {Spanish Game: Morphy Defense, Graz Variation} (5... Na5 6. Bxf7+ {Spanish Game: Morphy Defense. Norwegian Variation Nightingale Gambit})) 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 O-O 8. c3 d6 9. h3 Na5 10. Bc2 c5 11. d4 Qc7 12. Nbd2 cxd4 13. cxd4 {Spanish Game: Morphy Defense. Chigorin Defense Panov System}) 4... Bc5 { C68 Spanish Game: Exchange Variation, sidelines} 5. d3 d6 (5... Nf6 6. Be3 d6 7. Nc3 O-O 8. O-O Bxe3 9. fxe3 Na5 10. Bb3 c6 11. Qe1 Nxb3 12. axb3 Ng4 13. h3 Nh6 14. g4 f6 15. Qg3 Bd7 16. Rf2 Qe7 17. Raf1 Rae8 18. Kh1 b5 19. Nh4 g6 20. b4 {Kaldor,A (2420)-Pinter,J (2510) Budapest 1981 0-1 (45)}) (5... h6 6. a4 Nf6 7. h4 d6 8. c3 Be6 9. Bxe6 fxe6 10. b4 Ba7 11. b5 axb5 12. axb5 Bxf2+ 13. Kxf2 Rxa1 14. bxc6 Rxb1 15. Qc2 Rb6 16. cxb7 Rxb7 17. Qa4+ Ke7 18. Ba3 Nd7 19. d4 exd4 20. Nxd4 {Matejka,F (1640)-Novak,J (1365) Orlova 2015 0-1 (32)}) 6. Ng5 Nh6 7. Qf3 {N Pawn f7, live or die!} (7. h3 Na5 8. Bb3 Nxb3 9. axb3 Qf6 10. Nf3 Bd7 11. c3 O-O-O 12. Bg5 Qg6 13. Bxd8 Rxd8 14. Rg1 f5 15. Nbd2 Rf8 16. Qe2 Qf6 17. O-O-O g5 18. Rgf1 Nf7 19. Nh2 Nd8 20. f3 Ne6 21. g3 h5 {Logvinenko,M (1273) -Haecker,K (1635) Magdeburg 2010 1-0 (53)}) (7. Nc3 Na5 8. Bb3 Nxb3 9. axb3 Ng4 10. Nh3 Nf6 11. Ng5 Bg4 12. Nf3 h6 13. h3 Bh5 14. O-O O-O 15. Qe2 Re8 16. Be3 Bxe3 17. Qxe3 c6 18. Rfe1 d5 19. g4 d4 20. Qe2 dxc3 21. gxh5 cxb2 {Sliva, O-Cupr,J Plzen 2001 0-1 (49)}) (7. a4 $5 {= must be considered}) 7... O-O {=/+} 8. Qg3 (8. a4 $5 {=/+ is an interesting alternative}) 8... Nd4 {+/-} 9. Kd1 (9. Bb3 Ng4 10. Rf1 a5 {+/-}) 9... Kh8 (9... b5 $5 10. Bb3 Nxb3 11. axb3 f5 {-+}) 10. c3 Ne6 (10... Nc6 11. Kc2 {+/-}) 11. h4 (11. Bxe6 $5 Bxe6 12. Nxe6 fxe6 13. Rf1 {=/+}) 11... Qf6 {+/-} 12. f3 b5 13. Bd5 {White threatens to win material: Bd5xa8} Rb8 14. Rf1 $2 (14. b4 $5 {is worth consideration} Bb6 15. Nxe6 fxe6 16. Bc6 {=/+}) 14... Nf4 {+/-} 15. Kc2 (15. d4 Bb6 16. Bxf4 exf4 {-+} (16... Qxf4 $6 17. Qxf4 exf4 18. Kc2 {=})) 15... Nxd5 16. exd5 Nf5 17. Qe1 Qg6 $4 { Black has let it slip away} (17... Qd8 {-+ and the scales tip in favour of Black}) 18. g4 {+/-} Ne7 $4 {causes further problems for White} (18... f6 19. gxf5 Bxf5 {+/-}) 19. h5 {+-} Qf6 (19... Qxg5 {doesn't get the cat off the tree} 20. Bxg5 f6 {+-}) 20. f4 (20. Ne4 {keeps an even firmer grip} Nxd5 21. Nxf6 Nxf6 {+-}) 20... Kg8 $4 {overlooking an easy win} (20... Bxg4 $5 {should not be overlooked} 21. fxe5 Qxe5 22. Nxf7+ Rxf7 23. Qxe5 Bd1+ 24. Rxd1 dxe5 {=/+}) 21. Qe4 (21. Ne4 {secures victory} Nxd5 22. Nxf6+ Nxf6 23. fxe5 Nxg4 24. b4 {+- }) 21... g6 {=} 22. Nxh7 $4 {releasing the pressure on the opponent} (22. Qh1 { and White can hope to live} Qg7 23. fxe5 gxh5 24. gxh5 Qxe5 25. Ne4 Nxd5 26. Re1 {+/-}) 22... Kxh7 {+/-} 23. hxg6+ (23. Nd2 exf4 24. Rxf4 {+/-}) 23... fxg6 {-+} 24. Qh1+ (24. Nd2 exf4 25. b4 {-+}) 24... Kg8 25. fxe5 (25. Nd2 { desperation} Bxg4 26. Ne4 {-+}) 25... Qxf1 26. Kb3 Qxh1 (26... Qxh1 27. Kc2 Bxg4 28. b4 Qd1+ 29. Kb2 Nxd5 30. Bd2 Nxb4 31. cxb4 Bd4+ 32. Bc3 Rf2+ 33. Nd2 Rxd2+ 34. Ka3 Qa4#) 0-1

10 Feb 2016

B49 Sicilian: Taimanov: 5.Nc3 Qc7 6.Be3 a6 7.Be2 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6 5.Nc3 e6 6.Be2 Nf6 7.O-O Qc7 8.Be3)

B49 Sicilian: Taimanov: 5.Nc3 Qc7 6.Be3 a6 7.Be2 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6 5.Nc3 e6 6.Be2 Nf6 7.O-O Qc7 8.Be3)

The second post of mine in a row where the featured game was played in the paweljaniak's mini-tournament I, which is a normal stakes tournament. That is to say the entry cost and the winnings are normal. Out of the three mini-tournaments I currently play at GameKnot, only one is considered to be a high-stakes tournament where the entry cost and the winnings are higher than normal. This is my latest game from GameKnot. Nothing has changed in the tournament since yesterday, on my part that is, I am still on last place with 1.5 points. My opponent, bengi95, is on third place at the moment and he has gathered 3.5 points in nine games. Those points consist of 3 wins and 1 draw.

I am a bit disappointed of this draw against a lower rated player, but considering the fact that bengi95 was clearly better at times in this game, I should be glad that this turned out to be a draw rather than a loss. Then again, it was I who was on the better side last, before the position withered to a drawish one. Admittedly the way I played in the different colored bishops endgame was not that good. The reason for this is that I do not possess enough understanding of these types of positions just yet.

[Event "paweljaniak's mini-tournament I"] [Site "http://gameknot.com/chess.pl?"] [Date "2016.01.30"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "bengi95"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "B49"] [WhiteElo "1759"] [BlackElo "1667"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "77"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 a6 5. Nc3 e6 {Sicilian Defense: Paulsen Variation} 6. Be2 Nf6 (6... Nge7 {Sicilian Defense: Paulsen Variation, Taimanov Variation}) 7. O-O Qc7 8. Be3 {B49 Sicilian: Taimanov: 5.Nc3 Qc7 6. Be3 a6 7.Be2} Ne5 9. f4 Nc4 10. Bc1 (10. Bxc4 Qxc4 11. e5 (11. Qf3 Bb4 12. Na4 Ba5 13. b3 Qc7 14. c4 d6 15. Rac1 Bd7 16. c5 Bxa4 17. cxd6 Qd7 18. bxa4 O-O 19. Nb3 Qxa4 20. Nxa5 Qxa5 21. Bd4 Rac8 22. Rxc8 Rxc8 23. e5 Nd5 24. f5 Qd2 25. Ba7 Rc1 {Kiefer,G (2254)-Hell,P (2239) Baden 2014 1/2-1/2 (39)}) 11... Nd5 12. Nxd5 Qxd5 13. c4 Qe4 14. Qd2 Bb4 15. Qf2 O-O 16. a3 Bc5 17. Rae1 d6 18. Nxe6 fxe6 19. Bxc5 Qxc4 20. exd6 Bd7 21. Qe3 Rac8 22. Bd4 Qd5 23. Qe5 Qxe5 24. Bxe5 Rc2 { Lobron,E (2497)-Taimanov,M (2407) Stockholm 2004 1-0 (48)}) 10... Bb4 11. Qd3 b5 12. Bf3 {N} (12. e5 Bxc3 13. Qxc3 Nd5 14. Qg3 O-O 15. b3 Qb6 16. Rd1 Na5 17. Kh1 Nc6 18. Nxc6 dxc6 19. f5 Kh8 20. c4 Ne7 21. f6 Ng6 22. fxg7+ Kxg7 23. Bg5 f5 24. exf6+ Kg8 25. Bd3 Qb8 26. Qh3 Qc7 {Arnold,L (2348)-Klebel,M (2391) Germany 2005 1-0}) (12. e5 Bxc3 13. Qxc3 {+/-} (13. exf6 $6 Nxb2 14. fxg7 Rg8 15. Bxb2 Bxb2 {=})) 12... e5 {=} 13. fxe5 (13. b3 exd4 14. e5 Bxc3 15. exf6 gxf6 (15... Bxa1 $4 {avaricious play} 16. fxg7 (16. Bxa8 $6 {is not possible} gxf6 17. bxc4 Bc3 {=}) 16... Rg8 17. Qxh7 {+-} (17. Bxa8 $6 {is impossible} Rxg7 18. bxc4 Bb7 19. Bxb7 Qxb7 20. Qe2+ Kd8 {+/-})) 16. Bxa8 Bxa1 17. bxc4 Bc3 {=}) 13... Nxe5 14. Qe3 (14. Qd2 $5 Bc5 15. Kh1 {=/+}) 14... Bc5 {+/-} 15. Kh1 Nxf3 {Black has a mate threat} (15... O-O 16. Qg1 {+/-}) 16. gxf3 {=/+ Black has the pair of bishops} Qe5 {Black threatens to win material: Qe5xd4} 17. Nce2 O-O (17... d5 18. exd5 Qxe3 19. Bxe3 Nxd5 20. Bf2 {=/+}) 18. c3 {Prevents intrusion on b4+d4} (18. Rg1 g6 {=}) 18... Bb7 (18... d5 19. exd5 Qxd5 20. Nf4 {+/-}) 19. Qf4 (19. Qg5 Qxg5 20. Bxg5 Nh5 {=}) 19... Bxd4 (19... Qxf4 $5 20. Bxf4 Rfe8 {=/+}) 20. cxd4 (20. Nxd4 Qxf4 21. Bxf4 d5 {+/=}) 20... Qxf4 {=} 21. Bxf4 {Opposite coloured bishops appeared} Nh5 22. Bd6 {White threatens to win material: Bd6xf8} Rfe8 23. Ng3 Nxg3+ 24. hxg3 Rac8 25. Rac1 f6 {Secures e5} ( 25... f5 26. Rxc8 Rxc8 27. d5 {=}) 26. Rc3 (26. Kg2 f5 27. Rxc8 Rxc8 28. exf5 h5 {=}) 26... g5 27. Kg2 (27. Rxc8 Rxc8 28. d5 f5 {=}) 27... h5 (27... Rxc3 $5 28. bxc3 f5 {=/+}) 28. Rh1 g4 {Black gains space} 29. d5 {White wins space} gxf3+ 30. Kxf3 Rxc3+ 31. bxc3 Kg7 $2 (31... f5 $5 {and Black can hope to survive} 32. Rxh5 fxe4+ 33. Ke3 Rc8 {+/=}) 32. Rxh5 {+/-} Kg6 (32... Rc8 33. Bb4 Rd8 {+/-}) 33. Rh2 (33. Rf5 {+- White has a promising position}) 33... f5 { +/=} 34. exf5+ Kxf5 {White has a new passed pawn: g3.} 35. Rd2 (35. g4+ Kg6 36. Rh5 Rc8 {+/=}) 35... Re1 36. g4+ Kg6 37. Kf2 {White threatens to win material: Kf2xe1} (37. Kf4 Ba8 {+/=}) 37... Rc1 {Black threatens to win material: Rc1xc3} 38. Bb4 Kg5 39. a3 1/2-1/2

9 Feb 2016

B37 Sicilian: Maroczy Bind with 5...Bg7, sidelines (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 g6 5.c4 Bg7)

B37 Sicilian: Maroczy Bind with 5...Bg7, sidelines (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 g6 5.c4 Bg7)

It has been some time since I last shared a game from GameKnot, so today and tomorrow I am sharing a couple of my recent games from there. The game you can replay below was played in the paweljaniak's mini-tournament I against the creator of the tournament. The rating that you see in the notation is a bit misleading on my opponent's part, paweljaniak is currently rated 2057. The ratings are taken from the time this game was played. The rating climb of pawejaniak is pretty impressive in this short amount of time. My rating on the other hand does not change all that much there for some reason and it stays in the 1700+ category no matter what I do. There was a time when I played openings at GameKnot that I do not usually play which probably held my rating back a bit, but now that I have went back to lines that I have more experience, I am close of hitting my rating peak there. I am still quite far away from the ratings I am more used to at other sites.

I am currently on 7th place in this tournament that only consists of seven players, so things have not gone the way I would have liked. I have finished three games and I have experienced all the possible results so far, so I have 1.5 points at the moment I type this. Paweljaniak leads the tournament, he has won 9 out of 10 games so far and only has two games left to finish. The win is still not guaranteed to go to paweljaniak as the current number two can still overtake him. It would require paweljaniak to lose both of his remaining games, one of which is against me, and ledzepp who is on second place to win all of his remaining games. There is still also one other possibility, I could win the tournament still, but it would require for me to win all my remaining games. That may be too much to ask from me though. I will obviously play as well as I can, but I doubt that I can do it.

[Event "paweljaniak's mini-tournament I"] [Site "http://gameknot.com/chess.pl?"] [Date "2016.01.16"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "paweljaniak"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B37"] [WhiteElo "1759"] [BlackElo "1696"] [Annotator "Stockfish 6 64 BMI2 (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "68"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 g6 5. c4 Bg7 {B37 Sicilian: Maroczy Bind with 5...Bg7, sidelines} 6. Nf3 (6. Be3 Nf6 7. Nc3 Ng4 {Sicilian Defense: Accelerated Dragon, Maroczy Bind, Breyer Variation}) 6... Qb6 {N} (6... d6 7. Be2 Nf6 8. Nc3 O-O 9. O-O Bg4 (9... Bd7 10. h3 Rc8 11. Bd2 Na5 12. b3 Re8 13. Qc2 Nc6 14. Rad1 a6 15. Be3 Qc7 16. Nd5 Nxd5 17. exd5 Bf5 18. Qd2 Nd8 19. Bh6 Bh8 20. Nd4 Bd7 21. Qe3 e5 22. dxe6 fxe6 23. Nf3 Nf7 24. Rd2 {Cermak,J (1518) -Kosina,V (1874) Brno 2010 1/2-1/2 (38)}) 10. Be3 Rc8 11. Rc1 Qd7 12. Qd2 Rfd8 13. Rfd1 Bxf3 14. Bxf3 Ne5 15. b3 Nxf3+ 16. gxf3 Qh3 17. Qe2 Rd7 18. Rd3 Bh6 19. Rcd1 Qh4 20. e5 Ne8 21. Rd4 {Veksler,A (1946)-Stumpf,W (1996) Templin 2004 0-1 (60)}) (6... Nf6 7. Nc3 d6 (7... O-O 8. Be2 b6 9. O-O Bb7 10. a3 Rc8 11. Rb1 Na5 12. b3 Nxe4 13. Nd5 Bxd5 14. cxd5 Nc3 15. Qd3 Nxb1 16. Qxb1 Rc3 17. b4 Nb7 18. Re1 e6 19. Qa2 Qe7 20. Ng5 Rfc8 21. Be3 Rxe3 22. fxe3 {Bordon Sanchez, J (1519)-Rodriguez Manzaneda,I (1684) Gran Canaria 2012 0-1}) 8. h3 O-O 9. Be2 Nd7 10. O-O Nc5 11. Bd3 Bxc3 12. bxc3 Ne5 13. Bc2 Be6 14. Bh6 Re8 15. Nxe5 dxe5 16. Qe2 Qa5 17. Qe3 Bxc4 18. Rfd1 Red8 19. f4 exf4 20. Bxf4 Ne6 21. Bh6 { Pihajlic,A (2080)-Bojkovic,N (2365) Cetinje 1992 0-1 (41)}) (6... Nh6 7. h3 f5 8. Bd3 Nb4 9. e5 Nf7 10. Bf4 Nxd3+ 11. Qxd3 d6 12. Nc3 O-O 13. Qe2 Qa5 14. O-O dxe5 15. Bd2 Be6 16. Nb5 Qd8 17. Bc3 Qc8 18. b3 a6 19. Na3 e4 20. Nd4 Bd7 21. Qc2 {Ennigrou,A-Anastasopoulos,A Munich 1958 0-1 (36)}) 7. Nc3 Nf6 8. Be2 { White has a very active position} d6 {White has an active position} 9. O-O O-O 10. Nd5 Nxd5 11. cxd5 Nd4 12. Nxd4 Qxd4 13. Qxd4 Bxd4 14. Rb1 Bd7 15. b3 { Secures a4} Rac8 16. Bh6 Bg7 17. Bxg7 Kxg7 18. Rbc1 h6 19. Rfe1 Rxc1 20. Rxc1 Rc8 21. Rxc8 Bxc8 {A bishop endgame occured} 22. Kf1 (22. f4 Kf6 {=}) 22... g5 23. Bd3 (23. f3 $5 {= is noteworthy}) 23... Kf6 {+/-} 24. Ke2 Ke5 25. Ke3 f5 26. f3 (26. Bb1 fxe4 27. Bxe4 b5 {+/-}) 26... f4+ 27. Kd2 Kd4 28. Be2 h5 { Black intends g4} 29. Bd1 g4 30. Be2 (30. Ke2 h4 31. Bc2 Bd7 32. fxg4 Bxg4+ 33. Kd2 f3 34. gxf3 Bxf3 {-+}) 30... g3 31. hxg3 (31. h4 {-+}) 31... fxg3 32. Bd3 ( 32. Bc4 {does not solve anything} Bh3 33. Bf1 Bd7 {-+}) 32... h4 33. Bf1 Bd7 34. a4 a5 (34... a5 35. f4 Kxe4 36. Bd3+ Kxf4 {-+}) 0-1

8 Feb 2016

Chess960 SP587

Chess960 SP587

Today I will share a chess960 game and some chess games. This game was played at ChessRex as a correspondence game. Time control for this game was 4 days per move. The game started January 7th 2016 and finished on January 31st 2016. The game started with Djoule developing his or her pieces more efficiently than me in my opinion because after seven moves, Djoule had developed both of his or her knights, the dark-squared bishop and castled. While that happened, I had developed my knights and castled, but I had also developed and undeveloped my light-squared bishop.

The balance shifted in my favor and back to a more even position many times during the first 19 moves of the game, but starting on move 20, the game went more and more to my favor. After the move 20.dxc5, which turned out to be a mistake, I was able to reply correctly with Rxc5 which gave me some play on the c-file. I am not sure why Djoule played 21.Be3 and sacrificed the c-pawn. Maybe it was a misclick or something. When you make a move at ChessRex, there is no submit move button that you would need to click after you have moved. Therefore if you click on a piece and dropped it somewhere where it did not originate, you have made your move, unless the move you made is illegal that is. While on the subject of making moves, I would also like to mention that castling in chess960 games does not follow the same kind of logic at ChessRex that I have seen on other sites. In most sites I have played chess960, you castle by moving your king in top of the rook on the side you want to castle, but on ChessRex you move the king to a square where it should land after castling and the question box appears whether you want to castle or not. This is the way I remember it works anyway. On move 29 I wanted to play safely in my opinion, so I played f6, in order to avoid discovered checks on the long diagonal. I am not sure if I already thought about Rg2+ and my possible discovered checks on the long diagonal, but I wanted to make sure my opponent had as little counterplay as possible. However, my move was not the best move and I should have gone for Rg2+. The game continuation was good enough to keep the winning advantage on my side and I did not let go of the advantage in the remainder of the game and after seeing my 45th move, Djoule resigned. I have added one more analysed game the following posts: B18 Caro-Kann Defense: Classical Variation. Main Line, B43 Sicilian Defense: Kan Variation, Knight Variation, C99 Spanish Game: Morphy Defense. Chigorin Defense Panov System and C69 Spanish Game: Exchange Variation, Alapin Gambit. In addition, I have also added two mate in two, one mate in three, one mate in four and one mate in five puzzle today.

5 Feb 2016

C68 Spanish Game: Exchange Variation, sidelines (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Bxc6 dxc6 5.O-O Bg4 6.h3 h5)

C68 Spanish Game: Exchange Variation, sidelines (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Bxc6 dxc6 5.O-O Bg4 6.h3 h5)

The losses keep coming... Well, for awhile now anyway. I have turned my downhill to a small incline at Chess.com at least and actually at Red Hot Pawn too, though not as clearly because at both sites I have only won the last game and not even two in a row, but the difference is that out of the last four games, I have won three and drawn one at Chess.com while at RHP I have won only once in that same amount of games and lost three games. Admittedly, the average rating of my opponents at RHP in those three games was 2422, so it is no wonder I lost them. The game below is one of those losses.

This was played on round one of the 2015 December Quartets I 1800+ tournament. 22 players started this tournament and they were divided into two groups of five and three groups of four players. I am playing in group 3, which is the only one of the five where the winner of the group has already been decided. TheBigKat won our group and will advance to the next round. I have finished three out of the six games in this group and I have lost them all. With my score of zero points, I actually tie on third place because one other player has not received any points so far either. I am doubtful that I will get any points from my three remaining games, but I will do my best to prove myself wrong on that occasion. Until Monday, my fellow chess enthusiasts!

[Event "Quartets"] [Site "http://www.redhotpawn.com"] [Date "2015.12.21"] [Round "1"] [White "TheBigKat"] [Black "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C68"] [WhiteElo "2475"] [BlackElo "1886"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "43"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Bxc6 dxc6 5. O-O Bg4 6. h3 h5 {C68 Spanish Game: Exchange Variation, sidelines} 7. Na3 (7. hxg4 hxg4 8. d4 gxf3 9. Qxf3 Qh4 10. g3 Qh2# {0-1 (10) Gusev,A (2329)-Murzin,L (2257) Tula 2000}) 7... Bd6 { N} (7... Bxa3 8. bxa3 Bxf3 (8... Qf6 9. Rb1 Bxf3 10. Qxf3 Qxf3 11. gxf3 O-O-O 12. d3 Ne7 13. f4 exf4 14. Bxf4 g5 15. Bd2 Rhg8 16. Rbe1 c5 17. Bc3 Nc6 18. Bf6 Rd7 19. Re3 Rg6 20. e5 Nd4 21. Rc1 Ne6 22. Re4 Rd4 23. Rce1 {Sergeev,A (2333) -Korjakin,A (2150) Nizhnij Tagil 2007 0-1 (74)}) 9. Qxf3 Ne7 10. Rb1 b6 11. Qc3 Qd6 12. Bb2 O-O-O 13. Rfd1 Ng6 14. Qc4 Kb7 15. a4 Nf4 16. Kh2 h4 17. a5 b5 18. Qf1 Rh5 19. a4 Qg6 20. axb5 cxb5 21. d3 Rg5 22. Bc1 {Stingl,R (1905)-Kopp,A (2176) Bayern 2014 0-1 (31)}) 8. d4 {White threatens to win material: d4xe5} ({ Instead of} 8. hxg4 hxg4 9. g3 gxf3 10. Qxf3 Qd7 {=/+}) 8... Qf6 9. dxe5 { White forks: d6+f6} Bxe5 10. Nc4 ({Not} 10. hxg4 hxg4 11. Re1 gxf3 12. Qxf3 Qh4 {=/+}) 10... Bxf3 11. Qxf3 Qxf3 12. gxf3 {Black king safety improved} Bf6 13. Rd1 b6 {Prevents intrusion on a5} 14. a4 Nh6 (14... Rc8 $5 {+/= must definitely be considered}) 15. Bf4 {+/-} Rc8 (15... b5 $5 16. Na5 Bxb2 {+/-}) 16. a5 {+-} b5 17. Nb6 cxb6 $4 {terrible, but what else could Black do to save the game?} (17... Rb8 18. Nd7 Rc8 {+-}) 18. axb6 O-O 19. b7 Bxb2 20. bxc8=Q ( 20. bxc8=B $6 Bxa1 21. Bxa6 Bb2 {+-}) 20... Rxc8 21. Rxa6 Kh7 (21... Bc3 { doesn't improve anything} 22. Rd6 c5 23. Rdb6 {+-}) 22. Rd7 1-0

4 Feb 2016

B44 Sicilian: Taimanov: 5.Nb5 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Bd3 Nc6 6.Be3 d5 7.Nxc6 bxc6)

B44 Sicilian: Taimanov: 5.Nb5 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Bd3 Nc6 6.Be3 d5 7.Nxc6 bxc6)

Another loss against a much higher rated opponent. This was played on the first round of the 2015 December Quartets I 1800+ tournament at Red Hot Pawn. I am playing in group 3, which is actually already been decided because TheBigKat won all of his or her games. It was not all that surprising because TheBigKat is not only the highest rated player in that group by over 200 points, but is also the second highest rated player on the site. Group 3 is also the strongest group of the five groups that players were divided into. Though not by much because the average rating in group 3 is 2178.5, in group 5, which has the second highest average rating, it is 2174.5. Do not get me wrong, I like to face strong players, but it just means that I will not get that many points. Actually I might not get any from this group, which might be the first time in a very long time that I do not get any points in a tournament.

As you might have noticed if you visited this blog before, I have changed the layout a bit. I prefer the current layout to the one I had before, but this may cause some problems for people who use smaller monitors as you might not get all of the blog in view horizontally at the same time without scrolling left or right. If that causes anyone who comes to see this blog annoyance, please let me know in the comments. One of the aspects that I would also like to change, but I do not know how to fix, is how the games can be replayed when you are viewing this blog in a smart phone. The chess games can be viewed without seeing the notation in my phone at least in a decent way, but I would like it to be so that you could follow both the board and the notation at the same time. Then again trying to fit all that in a small viewing space of a smart phone, might prove to be a very difficult task. Especially because I would like to get not just the moves played in the game, but also all the annotations shown at the same time too. Maybe that is too much to ask. The preferred way might be that it only shows a few moves at a time and the notation just moves when you go the game back and forth. If only I could make a game replayer myself that would change to a proper size and shape according to the device you are looking the games at. Obviously I do not possess such skills, so I have to rely on the game replayers that I am using now.

[Event "Quartets"] [Site "http://www.redhotpawn.com"] [Date "2015.12.21"] [Round "1"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "TheBigKat"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B44"] [WhiteElo "1887"] [BlackElo "2474"] [Annotator "Stockfish 7 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "42"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 {Sicilian Defense: French Variation, Normal} 5. Bd3 (5. Nc3 Bb4 (5... Nc6 6. Ndb5 Bc5 {Sicilian Defense: Four Knights Variation, Cobra Variation}) 6. Bd3 (6. e5 {Sicilian Defense: Pin Variation, Koch Variation}) 6... e5 {Sicilian Defense: Pin Variation, Jaffe Variation}) 5... Nc6 6. Be3 d5 7. Nxc6 bxc6 {B44 Sicilian: Taimanov: 5.Nb5} 8. exd5 (8. O-O dxe4 9. Be2 Bd6 10. c4 Qc7 11. h3 O-O 12. Qc2 Bf4 13. Qc3 c5 14. Nd2 Bb7 15. Nb3 Bxe3 16. fxe3 Nd7 17. Na5 Ba6 18. Rf4 f5 19. Raf1 Ne5 20. g4 Rad8 21. gxf5 exf5 22. Rxf5 Rxf5 {Coda,C-Fiorito,F (2459) Mar del Plata 2000 1/ 2-1/2 (57)}) 8... exd5 9. O-O Bd6 10. Re1 {N} (10. h3 O-O 11. c4 (11. Nd2 Be5 ( 11... Re8 12. c3 c5 13. Qf3 Rb8 14. Rab1 Bb7 15. Bg5 Be5 16. Rfe1 d4 17. Bxf6 Qxf6 18. Qxf6 Bxf6 19. cxd4 Bxd4 20. Nb3 {1/2-1/2 (20) Kochseder,G (1976) -Boeven,M (2005) Bergen 2007}) 12. c3 Re8 13. Nf3 Bc7 14. c4 Bb6 15. Bxb6 axb6 16. Re1 Rxe1+ 17. Qxe1 Ba6 18. Ne5 c5 19. cxd5 Bxd3 20. Nxd3 Qxd5 21. Qc3 Rxa2 22. Rxa2 Qxa2 23. Qe5 h6 24. Nf4 Qb3 25. Kh2 Qb4 {Vlacil,V (2092)-Shanel,J (2206) Moravia 2003 0-1 (36)}) 11... Be5 12. Bc1 Be6 13. Qe2 Qc7 14. Nc3 Rfe8 15. cxd5 cxd5 16. Nb5 Bh2+ 17. Kh1 Qb8 18. Qf3 Be5 19. Be3 a6 20. Nd4 Qxb2 21. Nf5 Qb7 22. Rab1 Qd7 23. Rb6 d4 24. Bg5 Bd5 {Sandvik,T (2047)-Kivisto,M (2271) Espoo 2010 0-1 (40)}) 10... O-O 11. c4 (11. h3 $5 {=/+ is interesting}) 11... Ng4 {+/-} 12. g3 (12. h3 Bh2+ 13. Kh1 Be5 {+/-}) 12... Be5 13. Qc2 $2 (13. a3 $5 dxc4 14. Bxc4 Nxe3 15. fxe3 Bxb2 16. Ra2 {+/-}) 13... Rb8 {-+} 14. Bc1 (14. Nc3 d4 15. Rad1 f5 {-+} (15... dxe3 $6 16. Bxh7+ Kh8 17. Rxd8 exf2+ 18. Qxf2 Rxd8 19. Qc2 {+/-}) (15... Nxe3 $6 16. fxe3 g6 17. exd4 Bxd4+ 18. Kh1 {+/-})) 14... Bd4 15. Rf1 f5 16. Nc3 (16. Kh1 f4 17. f3 Ne5 {-+}) 16... f4 17. Bxh7+ ( 17. Ne2 {does not help much} fxg3 18. hxg3 Rxf2 19. Rxf2 Bxf2+ 20. Kg2 Qf6 {-+} ) 17... Kh8 18. cxd5 (18. Ne2 {doesn't improve anything} fxg3 19. hxg3 Rxf2 20. Rxf2 Bxf2+ 21. Kg2 Qf6 {-+}) 18... cxd5 (18... fxg3 {it becomes clear that Black will call all the shots} 19. hxg3 Nxf2 {-+}) 19. Ne2 fxg3 20. Nxd4 (20. hxg3 {is still a small chance} Rxf2 21. Rxf2 Bxf2+ 22. Kg2 {-+}) 20... gxf2+ 21. Kh1 Qd6 (21... Qd6 22. Rxf2 Rxf2 23. Nf3 Rxf3 24. Be3 Rf2 25. Qxf2 Nxf2+ 26. Bxf2 Rxb2 27. Rf1 Qf4 28. Kg2 Qg4+ 29. Kh1 Qf3+ 30. Kg1 Bh3 31. Be4 dxe4 32. a3 Qg2#) 0-1

3 Feb 2016

E18 Queen's Indian: Old Main Line (1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Bb7 5.Bg2 Be7 6.O-O O-O 7.Nc3 d6 8.Qc2 Nbd7 9.e4 e5 10.Rd1)

E18 Queen's Indian: Old Main Line (1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Bb7 5.Bg2 Be7 6.O-O O-O 7.Nc3 d6 8.Qc2 Nbd7 9.e4 e5 10.Rd1)

The game I am sharing today was played at Red Hot Pawn, in a tournament called 2015 October Grand Split Three Seven I 1800+. There are 30 players participating in this tournament and the players were divided into two groups of 15. I am playing in group 1, which is the stronger group of the two because the highest rated player went to group 1, the second highest to group 2, third highest to group 1 and so on. My opponent, MarcusRemius, is the second highest rated player in group 1 and he is also the sixth highest rated player on Red Hot Pawn in the active player list. In comparison, I am currently the 460th highest rated player there. There seem to be 9638 players on that list at the moment I type this. Which would mean that I am currently in the 95.2 percentile if I calculated correctly.

The opening variation played in the game below is actually in the move order it is in theory too, which is something that rarely happens in my games. This is one of the three losses I have suffered in this tournament so far. Two of those losses were against MarcusRemius and the third one was against cenerentola (2546), who is not only the highest rated player in the group, but also on this site as well. I have also won five games in the tournament, four of them were short timeout wins, but the latest win I got was a proper game. Those five wins put me in 15 points because you get 3 points for a win. My maximum possible score is 75, which still means that I have theoretical chances to win the group. It does not mean any realistic chances though as the duo that leads group 1 are way too strong for other players in the group, or that is my opinion anyway.

[Event "Grand Split Three Seven"] [Site "http://www.redhotpawn.com"] [Date "2015.12.21"] [Round "1"] [White "MarcusRemius"] [Black "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "E18"] [WhiteElo "2420"] [BlackElo "1878"] [Annotator "Stockfish 6 64 BMI2 (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "41"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 b6 4. g3 Bb7 5. Bg2 Be7 6. O-O O-O 7. Nc3 {Queen's Indian Defense: Classical Variation, Traditional Variation} d6 (7... d5 { Queen's Indian Defense: Classical Variation, Traditional Variation, Nimzowitsch Line}) (7... Na6 {Queen's Indian Defense: Classical Variation, Tiviakov Defense}) (7... Ne4 8. Qc2 Nxc3 9. Qxc3 {Queen's Indian Defense: Classical Variation, Traditional Variation, Main Line}) 8. Qc2 Nbd7 9. e4 e5 10. Rd1 {E18 Queen's Indian: Old Main Line (4.g3 Bb7 5.Bg2 Be7 6.O-O O-O 7.Nc3) } Qe8 (10... Qb8 11. h3 (11. b3 Re8 12. Bb2 Bf8 13. b4 a5 14. a3 axb4 15. axb4 Rxa1 16. Rxa1 g6 17. d5 Nh5 18. Qa4 Ndf6 19. Qa7 Qc8 20. Bc1 Ng7 21. Bd2 Nfh5 22. Rc1 Nf6 23. Ra1 Be7 24. Ra2 Rf8 25. Ng5 Ng4 {Papamattheou,P-Hookham,J (2104) Aghios Kirykos 2014 0-1 (51)}) 11... c6 12. Be3 Re8 13. Rd2 Bf8 14. Rad1 Qc7 15. Nh4 Rad8 16. Nf5 Bc8 17. g4 g6 18. Ng3 h6 19. Rf1 Bg7 20. d5 cxd5 21. cxd5 Ba6 22. Rc1 Rc8 23. Bf1 Bxf1 24. Kxf1 Qc4+ 25. Qd3 {Seres,L (2400)-Arnold, F (2335) Budapest 1990 1/2-1/2 (50)}) 11. b3 exd4 12. Nxd4 Bd8 {N} (12... Ne5 13. f4 Ng6 14. e5 Bxg2 15. exf6 Bxf6 16. Kxg2 Qd7 17. Nd5 {1-0 (17) Franco Valencia,B (2206)-Buitrago,B (1880) Bogota 2013}) 13. f4 Nc5 14. b4 Na6 (14... Ne6 15. Nf5 Rb8 {+-}) 15. a3 {+-} Nd7 (15... Rc8 16. Bb2 Rb8 17. Re1 {+-}) 16. Bb2 Bf6 (16... Rb8 {+-}) 17. e5 Bxg2 (17... dxe5 {is not much help} 18. fxe5 Bxg2 19. exf6 (19. Kxg2 $6 Bxe5 (19... Qxe5 20. Nf3 Qe8 21. Re1 {+/-}) (19... Nxe5 20. Re1 {+/-}) 20. Nd5 f6 {=}) 19... Nxf6 20. Qxg2 Qe3+ 21. Kh1 {+-}) 18. exf6 (18. Kxg2 $6 {is impossible} dxe5 19. Nf5 g6 20. fxe5 Bxe5 21. Nh6+ Kg7 { +/-}) (18. Qxg2 $6 {is easily refuted} dxe5 19. Re1 exd4 20. Rxe8 Raxe8 {+/-}) 18... Bb7 (18... Nxf6 {does not help much} 19. Kxg2 c5 20. bxc5 Nxc5 21. Nf5 { +-}) 19. Re1 Qd8 (19... Nxf6 {otherwise it's curtains at once} 20. Rxe8 Nxe8 { +-}) 20. fxg7 Kxg7 21. Nd5 (21. Nd5 Kg8 22. Ne7+ Qxe7 23. Rxe7 Rfe8 24. Rxd7 Be4 25. Nf5 Re6 26. Qc3 f6 27. Re7 Bxf5 28. Rxe6 Nc5 29. Rxf6 Nd7 30. Rxf5 Ne5 31. fxe5 Rf8 32. exd6 Rf6 33. Qxf6 b5 34. Rg5#) 1-0