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23 Nov 2017

C50 Hungarian Defence and Giuoco Pianissimo (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.O-O d6 5.d3)

C50 Hungarian Defence and Giuoco Pianissimo (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.O-O d6 5.d3)

I am still going through my team match games from Chess.com and this one was played in a team match called 3.) 1/1/2016. HAPPY NEW YEAR 2016=SRETNA NOVA 2016.GODINA. It was played between MY FRIENDS International MY FRIENDS--MOJI PRIJATELJI and ISK Crvena Zvezda on 12 boards. I played on board 5 for MY FRIENDS International MY FRIENDS--MOJI PRIJATELJI and in addition to this draw, I was able to win my other game against vladoo76. The match ended with a score of 15 - 9 in our favor! While this game ended in a draw, there were few moments in the game where I could have seized a clear advantage. First of which came when my opponent played 23.Rf2. I had already a small advantage at that point, due to the inaccurate move 20.Nf3, so the combined effort of the 20th and 23rd move of vladoo76 led into a position where I was clearly better.

In the game I replied with 23...c6, which was not as good as the move 23...Nxd5. Knight can take on d5 due to the pin on the e-file. It is rather embarrassing that I did not see the obvious way to win a pawn. That being said my move is maybe good enough for a clear advantage. Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT at depth 37 seems to think so. Vladoo76 continued with 24.dxc6 and then I chose the wrong capture, I took on c6 with the pawn when I ought to have captured the pawn with my queen. The next moment in the game where my opponent started to go towards a clearly inferior position was seen when vladoo76 chose to play 30.Qc4.

Moving the queen off the b-file enabled me to play 30...Qb6+ without having the possibility for my opponent to trade queens. It was actually the best reply and the continuation 31.Kh1 Ng4 was the right idea, but then I deviated from the correct plan when I replied to 32.h3 with the move 32...Nf6. I should have played 32...Nf2+, which was the logical continuation for the sequence of moves started by 30...Qb6+. My 32nd move was not completely awful, I should still be preferred in the position, but the game would likely end up being a draw. We did end up agreeing to a draw a few moves later, but unfortunately for me, I did not understand how bad the last move 35.Qa6 actually was.

It turns out that I was in a winning position and agreed to a draw. It was not the first time I have made a bad judgement call on a position and it definitely is not going to be the last time. The game could have continued 35...Nh5 36.Rc2 d5 37.Qd3, for instance, and vladoo76 should be clearly on the defensive side of the board.

[Event "3.) 1/1/2016. HAPPY NEW YEAR 2016=SRETN"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2016.01.01"] [Round "?"] [White "vladoo76"] [Black "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "C50"] [WhiteElo "1684"] [BlackElo "1806"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s)"] [PlyCount "69"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. O-O d6 5. d3 {C50 Hungarian Defence and Giuoco Pianissimo} Be6 6. Bxe6 fxe6 7. c3 (7. Bg5 Nf6 8. Nc3 Qe7 9. Nb5 O-O-O 10. Nh4 h6 11. Bd2 g5 12. Nf3 a6 13. Nc3 Na5 14. a3 Nc4 15. Bc1 Be3 16. Bxe3 Nxb2 17. Qb1 {1-0 (17) Eschweiler,C-Hirsekorn,G (737) Magdeburg 2015}) 7... Nf6 (7... Bb6 8. Ng5 Qf6 9. Qh5+ g6 10. Qh3 h6 11. Nf3 O-O-O 12. Be3 g5 13. Nbd2 Nge7 14. Nc4 Rdg8 15. Nxb6+ axb6 16. d4 g4 17. Qh4 Qg6 18. Nd2 d5 19. f3 gxf3 20. g3 dxe4 21. Qxe4 Nf5 22. Nxf3 {Hunko,G (2054)-Toth,J (2043) Hungary 2006 0-1 (49)}) 8. d4 $146 (8. h3 O-O 9. Ng5 Qd7 10. Nd2 d5 11. Nb3 Bb6 12. c4 h6 13. Nf3 Rf7 14. c5 Ba5 15. Bd2 Bxd2 16. Qxd2 Qe7 17. Rac1 Raf8 18. a3 Nd7 19. Rc2 Qf6 20. Qe2 Qg6 21. Nbd2 Nf6 22. Nh4 Qg5 {Scherbakova,G-Nagorny,D Odessa 2007 1-0 (43)}) 8... exd4 9. cxd4 Bb6 10. d5 exd5 11. exd5 Ne7 {Black threatens to win material: Ne7xd5} 12. Nc3 {White has an active position} O-O { Black castles and improves king safety} 13. Ng5 {Black has a cramped position} Qd7 14. Be3 Bxe3 (14... Ba5 15. Ne6 Rfe8 16. Nf4 $15) 15. fxe3 $11 Ng6 (15... h6 16. Ne6 Rf7 17. e4 $11) 16. e4 (16. Qb3 Rab8 $14) 16... Rfe8 17. Qd3 Re7 18. Qc4 {White has an active position} Ne5 {Black threatens to win material: Ne5xc4 } 19. Qe2 h6 20. Nf3 (20. Ne6 Rf7 $11) 20... Nxf3+ $15 21. Qxf3 Rae8 22. Rae1 Re5 23. Rf2 (23. Qd3 c5 $15) 23... c6 (23... Nxd5 24. Nxd5 Rxd5 25. Qc3 $17) 24. dxc6 bxc6 {Black has new hanging pawns: c6+d6} (24... Qxc6 25. Rd1 $17) 25. Rfe2 Rf8 26. Qd3 Qe6 27. Qa6 Qd7 28. Qa3 (28. Qd3 Rf7 $15) 28... Qc7 $15 29. Qb3+ Kh8 30. Qc4 (30. Qb4 $142 $5 $15 {is noteworthy}) 30... Qb6+ $17 31. Kh1 Ng4 32. h3 (32. g3 $142 $17) 32... Nf6 (32... Nf2+ $142 $5 33. Kh2 Rg5 $17) 33. Qd3 Qb4 {Increasing the pressure on the isolated pawn on e4} (33... Nh5 34. g4 Nf4 35. Qxd6 $17) 34. a3 $11 {White threatens to win material: a3xb4} Qb8 35. Qa6 1/2-1/2

22 Nov 2017

B00 Queen's Fianchetto Defence, Nimzowitsch Defense (1.e4 Nc6 2.d4 e5 3.d5 Nce7 4.c4 Ng6 5.Nf3)

B00 Queen's Fianchetto Defence, Nimzowitsch Defense (1.e4 Nc6 2.d4 e5 3.d5 Nce7 4.c4 Ng6 5.Nf3)

This is one of the many team match games I have played at Chess.com. The match was played between La Belle France and Вежливые люди on 11 boards. I played on board 4 for La Belle France and in addition to this loss, I managed to draw my other game against Dreadnought53. Luckily for the team, other members were able to play better than me and we ended up winning the match with a score of 16.5 - 5.5. It was my opponent, who first made a mistake in this game, which resulted in a position where I was clearly better. Dreadnought53 played 8...h4, which does give a bit more room for the rook on h8 to move, but nothing more.

My best option was to develop my bishop to e2 and castle on the kingside after that. The way my opponent played the game up to that point, I did not like the idea of castling kingside, so I moved my queen to d2, which prepared castling on the queenside. Actually it was not that easy for my opponent to attack on the kingside, so I should not have been that worried about the possible attack. The next mistake was played by my opponent on move 18. In the game my opponent played 18...Nxd3+ and Dreadnought53's position started to fall apart.

Everything went my way until I played 25.Qf5. With that move I went from having a winning advantage to being only slightly better. I probably did not like to play Rf5, because allowing the queen exchange on g4 did not look like a good idea to me. Admittedly it still looks something I would not dare to attempt of playing, but according to the engine I should have a winning advantage in that continuation.

The game continued to be played in a roughly even manner until my opponent played 41...Re7, which was a huge blunder that could have lost Dreadnought53 the game. I found the strongest move according to Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT at depth 41, 42.Rxe7+. I thought at the time that this should be a rather straightforward win and up to the move 45...d5 I was indeed going towards a win.

After my opponent's 46th move the situation at the board had become difficult for me to play and finding the right move was not as easy as it was a couple of moves earlier. I played 46.exd5+ because I thought that I can't allow my opponent to have a protected passed pawn on the center of the board. It was not a good idea because after 46...Kxd5, the Black king seems to be much better placed at the center when compared to its counterpart, which aimlessly attacks the pawn on h4. That being said, I should still have a good position, but not as promising as it would have been after 46.Bd2.

It was only after 46...Kxd5 that I completely threw my advantage away by moving my king to f5. The move 47.b6 seems to be much better alternative. The last blunder of the game was played by me on move 52, I took on h4 with my bishop, not realizing that it is easily refuted with the move 52...Bd6 and I am hopelessly lost.

I had very good chances to win this game, I was given the chance to win multiple times, but Dreadnought53 was able to complicate things enough that I made awful moves, which resulted in my loss.

[Event "La Belle France vs ???????? ???? - Board"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2016.03.20"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "Dreadnought53"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B00"] [WhiteElo "1809"] [BlackElo "1905"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "106"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 Nc6 2. d4 e5 3. d5 {Nimzowitsch Defense: Kennedy Variation, Linksspringer Variation} (3. dxe5 Nxe5 (3... Qh4 {Nimzowitsch Defense: Kennedy Variation, Herford Gambit}) (3... Bc5 {Nimzowitsch Defense: Kennedy Variation, Bielefelder Gambit}) 4. Nf3 {Nimzowitsch Defense: Kennedy Variation, Paulsen Attack}) 3... Nce7 4. c4 Ng6 5. Nf3 {B00 Queen's Fianchetto Defence, Nimzowitsch Defense} Be7 $146 {Black's piece can't move: c8} (5... Nf6 6. Qc2 ( 6. Bd3 Bc5 7. Nc3 O-O 8. h3 a5 9. g3 d6 10. Qe2 Bd7 11. Be3 b6 12. Kf1 Bxe3 13. Qxe3 h6 14. Bc2 Nh7 15. Kg2 Ne7 16. Nd2 f5 17. exf5 Bxf5 18. Nde4 Rf7 19. f3 Qf8 20. h4 Nf6 {Neat,K (2315)-Watson,I (2210) Brighton 1980 1/2-1/2}) 6... Bc5 (6... Bb4+ 7. Nbd2 O-O 8. a3 Bxd2+ 9. Bxd2 d6 10. g3 Bg4 11. Bg2 Qc8 12. h3 Bd7 13. h4 Nh5 14. c5 f5 15. c6 bxc6 16. dxc6 Be6 17. Ng5 f4 18. Nxe6 Qxe6 19. g4 f3 20. Bf1 Nhf4 21. Bc4 {Wang,Z (2515)-Lin,W (2545) Beijing 1993 0-1 (40)}) 7. h3 d6 8. a3 a5 9. Nc3 Bd7 10. Na4 Nxe4 11. Nxc5 Nxc5 12. b3 Qf6 13. Be3 b6 14. Rc1 Nf4 15. Bxf4 Qxf4 16. Rd1 Bf5 17. Qc3 Qe4+ 18. Be2 Qc2 19. Qe3 Qxb3 20. Qg5 {Garcia,H-Figueroa,E Buenos Aires 1965 0-1 (39)}) (5... Bc5 6. Bd3 (6. Nc3 a6 7. Be2 d6 8. O-O h6 9. Bd2 N8e7 10. a3 O-O 11. b4 Ba7 12. Rc1 Nf4 13. Bxf4 exf4 14. Na4 Ng6 15. c5 Re8 16. cxd6 cxd6 17. Nd2 Qg5 18. Kh1 Nh4 19. Bf3 Qd8 20. Nb2 g5 {Lilley,G-Pokorny,J Kuortane 1976 1-0 (66)}) 6... N8e7 7. O-O d6 8. a3 a5 9. Nc3 O-O 10. Na4 Ba7 11. b4 Bd7 12. b5 h6 13. Nc3 f5 14. exf5 Bxf5 15. Bxf5 Nxf5 16. Qe2 Qd7 17. Ne4 Rf7 18. a4 Bd4 19. Ra2 Raf8 20. Rc2 {Ernst, K-Kaulfuss,H (2190) Darmstadt 1994 0-1 (34)}) (5... Nf6 6. Qe2 $11) 6. Nc3 d6 7. h3 {Prevents intrusion on g4} h5 (7... Nf6 8. Be2 $14) 8. Be3 h4 9. Qd2 (9. Be2 Nf6 $16) 9... Nf6 $14 10. Bd3 Nh5 11. O-O-O {Black has a cramped position} Ngf4 {Black threatens to win material: Nf4xg2} 12. Bf1 (12. Rdg1 Nxd3+ 13. Qxd3 c5 $11) 12... Bd7 13. Ne2 g5 14. Ne1 f5 {Nimzovich: attack the chain at its base} 15. f3 (15. Bxf4 $5 {is worth looking at} Nxf4 16. Nxf4 gxf4 17. Bd3 $11) 15... fxe4 (15... Nxe2+ 16. Bxe2 Ng3 17. Rg1 fxe4 18. c5 $17) 16. fxe4 $15 g4 ( 16... c5 17. Nf3 $15) 17. Nxf4 Nxf4 (17... exf4 18. Bd4 Bf6 19. Rg1 $11) 18. Nd3 (18. Bxf4 exf4 19. hxg4 Bxg4 $14) 18... Nxd3+ (18... Nh5 $5 {should be examined more closely} 19. Nf2 g3 $11) 19. Bxd3 $16 g3 (19... Rg8 20. Rdf1 $16) 20. Be2 (20. Rhf1 $142 c5 21. dxc6 Bxc6 22. c5 $18) 20... b6 $4 {another step towards the grave} (20... O-O $142 $16) 21. Rdf1 $18 Bf6 22. Qd1 (22. Rf3 { makes it even easier for White} O-O 23. Rhf1 Qe7 $18) 22... Ke7 $2 (22... O-O $142 23. Bg4 Qe7 $18) 23. Bg4 Bxg4 24. Qxg4 (24. hxg4 $142 {seems even better} Qg8 25. Rf5 $18) 24... Qg8 25. Qf5 {White threatens to win material: Qf5xf6} ( 25. Rf5 $142 {White missed this excellent chance} Qxg4 26. hxg4 $18) 25... Rf8 $14 26. Rf3 Kd8 {Black king safety improved} 27. Rhf1 (27. Qg4 Qxg4 28. hxg4 Be7 29. Rxf8+ Rxf8 $11) 27... Be7 28. Qe6 Qxe6 29. dxe6 Rxf3 {Black forks: e3+f1} 30. Rxf3 {White has a new passed pawn: e6} Rg8 31. Rf5 Rg6 {Black threatens to win material: Rg6xe6} 32. Rh5 Rxe6 33. Rh8+ Kd7 34. Rh7 Kc6 35. Kd2 a5 36. b3 Bd8 37. Rh8 {White threatens to win material: Rh8xd8} Be7 38. Rh7 Bf6 39. Rh6 Kd7 40. Ke2 Bd8 41. Rh7+ Re7 $4 {letting the wind out of his own sails} (41... Kc8 $142 $11 {was possible}) 42. Rxe7+ $18 Bxe7 43. Kf3 Ke6 $4 { a blunder in a bad position} (43... Kc6 $18) 44. Kg4 b5 45. cxb5 d5 46. exd5+ ( 46. Bd2 $142 {secures the point} dxe4 47. Bxa5 Bd8 $18) 46... Kxd5 47. Kf5 $4 { spoils everything} (47. b6 $142 {secures victory} cxb6 48. Bxb6 $16) 47... Bd8 (47... Bc5 48. Bg5 e4 49. Bxh4 $11) 48. Bg1 (48. Bd2 $5 Kd4 49. Bxa5 $11) 48... Be7 $11 49. Be3 {Twofold repetition} Bc5 {Black threatens to win material: Bc5xe3} 50. Bg5 e4 51. Kg4 {White threatens to win material: Kg4xh4} Kd4 52. Bxh4 $4 {allows the opponent back into the game} (52. Kxh4 $142 {would save the game} e3 53. Kxg3 $11) 52... Bd6 $19 53. Bf6+ (53. b6 {cannot change destiny} cxb6 54. Bd8 b5 $19) 53... Kd3 (53... Kd3 54. Bd8 e3 $19) 0-1

21 Nov 2017

C78 Spanish Game: Archangelsk and Möller Defences (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.O-O Bc5 5.c3 d6 6.d4 Bb6 7.d5 a6 8.Ba4)

C78 Spanish Game: Archangelsk and Möller Defences (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.O-O Bc5 5.c3 d6 6.d4 Bb6 7.d5 a6 8.Ba4)

This very short game was played in a team match called TMCL 2016 Div C4 Round 5 Obsessive Chess Disorder!! v The United States Chess Club. It was played on 36 boards and I played on board 10 for Obsessive Chess Disorder. From my two games I was only able to win the game you can view below, the other game I lost. We were able to win the match with a score of 47 - 25!! This game features only one position of interest and that can be seen after the move 5.c3. The position after White's 5th move signifies the opening called C64 Spanish Game: Classical Variation. Zukertort Gambit, though it is likely that in many sources Spanish Game is replaced with Ruy Lopez. Previously I had this game in a post that named after C64 Spanish Game: Classical Variation. Zukertort Gambit, but I had to move this game here due to the way I am doing the opening classification these days. One should never go for this line C78 Spanish Game: Archangelsk and Möller Defences with Black pieces, because the position is quite lost after 5...d6.

The problem with the move was that I could just reply with 6.d4 and there is no way for LangstonTillman to save the piece. If the bishop moves to b6, like it did in the game, then the move 7.d5 wins the knight due to the pin that would not have existed without the d-pawn's advance. LangstonTillman replied with 7...a6, but it did not help because there was no b5 to follow it up, because the bishop blocked the pawn on b7. It was really easy to play the game after that and the game was resigned by my opponent a few moves later.

[Event "TMCL 2016 Div C4 Round 5 Obsessive Chess"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2016.05.15"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "LangstonTillman"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C78"] [WhiteElo "1818"] [BlackElo "1667"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "21"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Bc5 5. c3 {Spanish Game: Classical Variation. Zukertort Gambit} d6 (5... O-O 6. d4 Bb6 7. Bg5 {Spanish Game: Classical Variation. Modern Main Line}) 6. d4 Bb6 7. d5 a6 (7... O-O 8. dxc6 Nxe4 9. Qd5 {1-0 (9) Filev,G (2389)-Neichev,I Sofia 2010}) 8. Ba4 {C78 Spanish Game: Archangelsk and Möller Defences} Bxf2+ $146 (8... Bd7 9. dxc6 bxc6 (9... Bxc6 10. Bxc6+ bxc6 11. Bg5 h6 12. Bh4 O-O 13. Qa4 c5 14. Nbd2 Qe7 15. Nc4 Qe6 16. Bxf6 Qxf6 17. Nxb6 cxb6 18. c4 Rfb8 19. Qc2 b5 20. b3 b4 21. a3 a5 22. axb4 axb4 23. Qb2 Qf4 24. Qd2 {Kulovana,E-Burilova,P Czechia 2000 1-0}) 10. Bg5 (10. Qe2 O-O 11. Bg5 Re8 12. Nbd2 h6 13. Be3 Qe7 14. h3 Qe6 15. Bb3 Qe7 16. Rad1 Be6 17. Bxb6 cxb6 18. Bxe6 Qxe6 19. Nc4 b5 20. Nxd6 Red8 21. Nf5 Rxd1 22. Rxd1 Qxa2 23. Ne7+ Kf8 24. Nxc6 Rc8 {Zvereva,M (1632) -Rodha,A Durban 2014 1-0 (33)}) 10... O-O 11. Re1 h6 12. Be3 Re8 13. Bxb6 cxb6 14. Qxd6 Re6 15. Qd3 Qe7 16. Nbd2 Rd6 17. Qe2 b5 18. Bc2 Rd8 19. Rad1 Nh5 20. Nf1 Nf4 21. Qe3 Rg6 22. g3 Qe6 23. Nh4 {Attieh,W-Ghazi,H Beirut 2009 1-0 (39)}) (8... Nxe4 9. dxc6 bxc6 10. Bxc6+ {1-0 (10) Wodniak,S-Zawadka,P Polanica Zdroj 2012}) (8... Nxe4 9. dxc6 O-O $18) 9. Rxf2 b5 10. dxc6 bxa4 11. Qxa4 1-0

20 Nov 2017

A07 Réti Opening: New York and Capablanca Systems (1.g3 e5 2.Bg2 Nf6 3.d3 d5 4.Nc3 Be6 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.O-O Be7 7.Bg5 O-O)

A07 Réti Opening: New York and Capablanca Systems (1.g3 e5 2.Bg2 Nf6 3.d3 d5 4.Nc3 Be6 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.O-O Be7 7.Bg5 O-O)

At Chess.com there is a tournament in progress called "EXPECT NO MERCY - NAZARETH TOUR!!!", from which this game is taken. This is from the first round of the tournament, which is nearly complete, there is only one game left to finish, before the second round can begin. I managed to win my group, which means I will take part on round 2, the only player from my group that will do so, since only the winner advances from one round to another. My opponent in the game below, csabiu, was on second place in the final standings of group 7 with 6 points, half a point behind me. Starting with the move 13.Kh1, csabiu's position went downhill for two consecutive moves.

I replied with 13...Bxh4 because it ruined the pawn structure on the kingside and I thought that is worth of giving up the bishop pair. I seem to have been correct the judgement since Stockfish also likes the move. Csabiu's next move 14.gxh4 was the second mistake in a row, it was better to take on h3 first. In the game continuation I should have then played 14...Bxg2+, but instead I went for the move 14...Qg4, which threatened mate, but it was easily dealt with 15.Rg1. The game continued in a roughly even manner until my opponent played 19.Rg2.

With the move played in the game my opponent went from a slightly favorable position to one where csabiu were clearly worse. For example, the game might have continued 19...dxc3 20.Bxc3 Rad8 and the weak central pawns should put csabiu on the defensive. I went for the wrong move order unfortunately, I played 19...Rad8, which would have allowed my opponent to take on d4 and the position would have been equal. Csabiu moved the knight to g1 on move 20 instead, which was perhaps the worst move of the game up to that point because I could have been able to get a winning advantage starting with 20...dxc3. I do not know why I did not play it, even though I had clearly planned on doing it after Rad8. There really was no threat along the g-file, so I can't remember my reasoning why I played 20...Kh8. It was an okay move and I should be in the favorable side of the board, but it would have made my job of winning the game much easier, had I just taken on c3. Because I allowed my opponent some breathing room, csabiu was able to play 21.Nf3 and attack my queen. I moved the queen to h3 thinking that I can use the diagonal c8-h3 for retreating the queen safely. It was not the right idea, however, I should have just moved the queen to h5.

Csabiu's reply 22.Rg3 was first of two consecutive bad moves made by my opponent. I then had two good squares for the queen, h5 and e6, I chose the latter. It was answered by the terrible move 23.Qf1 and I was given another chance to get a winning advantage starting with 23...dxc3. Unfortunately I was too defensively minded once again and overprotected the g7 pawn with my rook. Even after that my position should be quite good when compared to that of my opponent. Everything went on more or less my way after that up to the move 32.Nh4.

For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to play 32...Qg5 and I completely missed the annoyance factor caused by 33.Ng6+. It would have won the pawn back and the position would have been evenly fought, had my opponent just played 34.Nxf4 after I moved my king to g8. I guess csabiu thought that he or she can actually win the game in the game continuation 34.Rxe8+ Rxe8 35.Qd5+ and it would have been true had I not been able to just take the queen on d5 with its counterpart. In fact the move 34.Rxe8+ should have meant a loss for csabiu, but I was able to mess up this game with two consecutive bad moves, first one being 36...Re2 and the second 37...Rd2.

The game ended to a perpetual check that I allowed when I played 38...Rxd3.

[Event "EXPECT NO MERCY - NAZARETH TOUR!!! - Rou"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2016.01.07"] [Round "?"] [White "csabiu"] [Black "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "A07"] [WhiteElo "1654"] [BlackElo "1814"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "87"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. g3 {Hungarian Opening: General} e5 2. Bg2 Nf6 (2... d5 3. b4 {Hungarian Opening: Buecker Gambit}) 3. d3 d5 4. Nc3 Be6 5. Nf3 Nc6 6. O-O Be7 7. Bg5 O-O {A07 Réti Opening: New York and Capablanca Systems} 8. e4 d4 9. Ne2 Qd7 (9... h6 10. Bd2 Qd6 11. Ne1 Nd7 12. f4 f5 13. h3 fxe4 14. dxe4 a5 15. Nd3 Bc4 16. b3 Bf7 17. Kh1 Bf6 18. Qe1 Nc5 19. Nec1 Nd7 20. Ne2 Nc5 {1/2-1/2 (20) Hickl,J (2500) -Hort,V (2580) Dortmund 1989}) 10. Nh4 $146 {White has a cramped position} (10. Bd2 Bh3 11. Bxh3 Qxh3 12. Ng5 Qh5 13. f4 Ng4 14. Nf3 f5 15. exf5 Rxf5 16. Kg2 Raf8 17. c3 Kh8 18. h3 Ne3+ 19. Bxe3 dxe3 20. Qb3 exf4 21. Nxf4 Rxf4 22. gxf4 Qg6+ 23. Kh1 e2 24. Rg1 Qh5 {Movsziszian,K (2464)-Aabling Thomsen,J (2341) San Sebastian 2016 1/2-1/2 (31)}) (10. Kh1 Bh3 11. Nfg1 Bxg2+ 12. Kxg2 Ng4 13. Bxe7 Nxe7 14. h3 Nf6 15. f4 exf4 16. Nxf4 Qb5 17. Rb1 Rad8 18. Nf3 c5 19. g4 c4 20. g5 Nd7 21. h4 Ne5 22. Nxe5 Qxe5 23. Nh5 Ng6 24. Qg4 cxd3 { Grabner,J-Kunschek,H Vienna 1998 0-1 (40)}) (10. Bc1 Bg4 11. Nd2 Nh5 12. a3 a5 13. f3 Bh3 14. Rf2 Ra6 15. Qf1 Bxg2 16. Qxg2 Nd8 17. Nc4 Qe6 18. a4 g6 19. g4 Ng7 20. f4 exf4 21. Bxf4 c5 22. Bd2 Nc6 23. Nf4 Qd7 24. Raf1 Nb4 {Petran,P (2410)-Karsa,L (2390) Hungary 1994 1-0}) 10... h6 {Black threatens to win material: h6xg5} 11. Bd2 Bh3 (11... Nh5 12. Nf5 Bxf5 13. exf5 $11) 12. a3 { Consolidates b4} Nh7 {White has a cramped position} (12... Rad8 $11) 13. Kh1 ( 13. Bxh3 $142 Qxh3 14. Nf5 $16) 13... Bxh4 $15 14. gxh4 (14. Bxh3 $142 Qxh3 15. Ng1 $17) 14... Qg4 {Black has a mate threat} (14... Bxg2+ $142 $5 15. Kxg2 f5 $17) 15. Rg1 Qxh4 16. Bxh3 Qxh3 17. Rg3 {White threatens to win material: Rg3xh3} Qh4 (17... Qh5 18. Qf1 $11) 18. c3 {Covers b4} (18. Qg1 Kh8 19. f4 f5 20. exf5 Qe7 21. fxe5 Rxf5 22. Nxd4 Nxd4 23. Qxd4 c5 $14 (23... Rxe5 $143 24. Rag1 c5 25. Qf4 $16)) 18... Nf6 (18... dxc3 19. Nxc3 f5 20. Qg1 $15) 19. Rg2 ( 19. cxd4 $5 Rfd8 20. Qf1 Nxd4 21. Nxd4 Rxd4 22. Qg2 $11) 19... Rad8 (19... dxc3 $142 20. Bxc3 Rad8 $17) 20. Ng1 $4 {releasing the pressure on the opponent} ( 20. cxd4 $142 $5 {looks like a viable alternative} exd4 21. f4 $11) 20... Kh8 ( 20... dxc3 $142 {and the rest is a matter of technique} 21. Bxc3 Nxe4 $19) 21. Nf3 Qh3 (21... Qh5 22. Qe2 dxc3 23. Bxc3 $17) 22. Rg3 (22. cxd4 $142 $5 { deserves consideration} exd4 23. Rg3 $11) 22... Qe6 $17 23. Qf1 $2 (23. cxd4 Nxd4 (23... exd4 $143 24. Rc1 $11) 24. Nxd4 Rxd4 $17 (24... exd4 $143 25. Rc1 $11)) 23... Rg8 (23... dxc3 $5 24. bxc3 Ne7 25. Qe2 $19) 24. Rh3 Nh7 25. c4 ( 25. cxd4 Nxd4 26. Nxd4 Rxd4 27. Rg3 $17) 25... f5 (25... g5 $142 $5 $17) 26. exf5 $15 Qxf5 27. b4 (27. Qg2 Rd6 28. Rg1 Ne7 $15 (28... Qxd3 $4 {the pawn must be left alone, otherwise Black will be punished} 29. Bxh6 Rg6 30. Qxg6 Qxg6 31. Rxg6 gxh6 32. Rgxh6 $18)) 27... Ne7 (27... g5 28. Ng1 Qg6 29. Re1 $17) 28. Re1 Ng6 29. Re4 (29. Rg3 $142 $5 $15 {must be considered}) 29... Rge8 $17 30. Qg2 $2 (30. Nh4 $142 Nxh4 31. Rexh4 $17) 30... Nf4 $19 31. Bxf4 exf4 32. Nh4 $2 (32. Nxd4 Qd7 33. Nf3 Rxe4 34. dxe4 $19) 32... Qg5 (32... Rxe4 $142 { nails it down} 33. dxe4 Qf6 $19) 33. Ng6+ $15 Kg8 34. Rxe8+ $4 (34. Nxf4 $142 { the only rescuing move} Qf5 35. Rxe8+ Rxe8 36. Qg3 $15) 34... Rxe8 $19 35. Qd5+ (35. Qxg5 {cannot change what is in store for White} Nxg5 (35... hxg5 $6 36. Kg2 $17) 36. Rh4 Re1+ 37. Kg2 f3+ 38. Kg3 Rg1+ 39. Kf4 Rg2 $19) 35... Qxd5+ 36. cxd5 Re2 (36... Ng5 $142 {and Black has prevailed} 37. Rh5 Re1+ 38. Kg2 f3+ 39. Kg3 Kf7 40. Nh8+ Kf6 $19) 37. Rf3 Rd2 (37... Nf6 $5 38. Kg2 a6 $17) 38. Rxf4 $11 Rxd3 39. Ne7+ Kh8 40. Ng6+ Kg8 41. Ne7+ Kh8 42. Ng6+ {Twofold repetition} Kg8 43. Ne7+ {Draw by threefold repetition} Kh8 44. Ng6+ 1/2-1/2

17 Nov 2017

C98 Closed Ruy Lopez: Chigorin Defence, 11.d4 Qc7 12.Nbd2 Nc6 (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.O-O Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.h3 Na5 9.c3 O-O 10.Bc2 c5 11.d4 Qc7 12.Nbd2 cxd4 13.cxd4 Nc6 14.Nf1 exd4 15.Bf4)

C98 Closed Ruy Lopez: Chigorin Defence, 11.d4 Qc7 12.Nbd2 Nc6 (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.O-O Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.h3 Na5 9.c3 O-O 10.Bc2 c5 11.d4 Qc7 12.Nbd2 cxd4 13.cxd4 Nc6 14.Nf1 exd4 15.Bf4)

While I do still keep correcting and perhaps improving on my previously posted games, this game may be something I have not shared in this blog before. I am maybe 90% sure that it has not appeared here before, the reason why I share this now, is that it was the next one on the list of analysed games in the database I am going through. It is actually a mixed bunch of games, containing both previously shared and games that have not appeared here before. I will mainly concentrate on making changes to the old posts, but these new games may appear from time to time. This game was played at Chess.com in a team match called EPIC MATCH. It was played between The King Attackers and DORU-66 & HIS BEST FRIENDS on 60 boards. I played on board 9 for DORU-66 & HIS BEST FRIENDS and lost both of my games. The final result, however, was 51.5 - 68.5 in our favor! For the first 23 moves the game both players made reasonable moves, but then it was me who messed up and then it was quickly over for me.

In the game I played 24.Nexd4, which was the game losing blunder. I did continue playing for awhile, but the game continuation shows quite well how hopeless my task was. The game ended in a position where the material is even, but I could not prevent my opponent from queening the a-pawn without giving my queen for it.

[Event "EPIC MATCH - Board 9"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2016.04.24"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "Ardell9648"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "C98"] [WhiteElo "1808"] [BlackElo "1980"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "64"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 d6 8. h3 Na5 9. c3 O-O 10. Bc2 c5 11. d4 Qc7 12. Nbd2 cxd4 13. cxd4 {Spanish Game: Morphy Defense. Chigorin Defense Panov System} Nc6 14. Nf1 exd4 15. Bf4 { C98 Closed Ruy Lopez: Chigorin Defence, 11.d4 Qc7 12.Nbd2 Nc6} Be6 16. a3 Nd7 17. Rc1 Qb6 18. Ng3 g6 $146 {Secures f5+h5} (18... Nde5 19. Nf5 Bf6 20. b3 (20. Nxd6 Rfd8 21. Nxe5 Bxe5 22. Bxe5 Nxe5 23. Nf5 d3 {0-1 (23) Nurkic,S (2395) -Lazic,M (2495) Pula 1990}) 20... Rfd8 21. N3xd4 Nxd4 22. Nxd4 Bxh3 23. Be3 Bg4 24. f3 Bh5 25. Ne6 Qa5 26. Nxd8 Rxd8 27. Rf1 g5 28. g4 Bg6 29. Qd5 Qxa3 30. Bd1 h6 31. Be2 Qb2 32. Rf2 Qa3 33. Kg2 {Salas Romo,J-Letelier Martner,R Santiago de Chile 1951 0-1 (40)}) (18... Nde5 19. Nf5 $11) 19. Ne2 $11 {The pressure on the isolated pawn grows. White threatens to win material: Ne2xd4} Bf6 20. Bxd6 Rfc8 21. Bd3 {The white bishop is safe in front of d4} Nce5 22. Bxe5 Nxe5 23. Rxc8+ Rxc8 24. Nexd4 $2 (24. Nf4 $142 $11 {is a viable option}) 24... Nxf3+ $17 25. Nxf3 Bxb2 26. a4 $4 {terrible, but the game is lost in any case} (26. Ng5 $142 $19) 26... Rc1 27. Qe2 Rxe1+ 28. Nxe1 bxa4 29. Bxa6 Bc3 30. Nf3 (30. Nc2 { praying for a miracle} Qb2 31. Kh2 $19) 30... a3 31. Bc4 Bxc4 32. Qxc4 Qb2 ( 32... Qb2 33. Kh2 a2 34. Qf1 a1=Q 35. Qxa1 Qxa1 36. h4 Qf1 37. h5 gxh5 38. Kg3 Ba5 39. e5 Bb6 40. Kf4 Bxf2 41. g4 Qd3 42. gxh5 Qe3+ 43. Kg4 Qe4+ 44. Kg5 Qxf3 45. e6 f6+ 46. Kh6 Be3#) 0-1

16 Nov 2017

B76 Sicilian Dragon: Yugoslav Attack, 9.g4 and 9.O-O-O (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Be3 Bg7 7.Qd2 O-O 8.O-O-O Qa5 9.Be2 d6 10.f3 Nxd4 11.Bxd4 Be6 12.Kb1)

B76 Sicilian Dragon: Yugoslav Attack, 9.g4 and 9.O-O-O (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Be3 Bg7 7.Qd2 O-O 8.O-O-O Qa5 9.Be2 d6 10.f3 Nxd4 11.Bxd4 Be6 12.Kb1)

The game I am sharing today was played in a mini-tournament called "ichthus's mini-tournament v" and it was held at GameKnot. It was an invitation only mini-tournament and 9 players took part in it. This has been so far the only mini-tournament I have been able to win. My opponent, ichthus, who created the mini-tournament was on 5th place in the final standings. The first real mistake according to Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT is 12...Kh8, though 8...Qa5 may need to be looked at more closely, better moves were probably available for my opponent on move 8. Not sure what the idea behind the move 12...Kh8 was, it seems to be just wasting time.

I replied with 13.g4, and my plan was to try and open files on the kingside. Ichthus then tried to get some play on the c-file by moving the rook from a8 to c8. I should have then played 14.a3, according to the engine at depth 32. I played 14.b3 in the game and the advantage I had before vanished into thin air. A few moves later my opponent threw the game away when he moved the knight to g3 on move 17.

The blunder by my opponent allowed forced mate, starting with 18.Qh6+. After seeing my 18th move, ichthus resigned, which was probably the best thing to do in that position.

[Event "ichthus's mini-tournament v"] [Site "http://gameknot.com/chess.pl?"] [Date "2016.10.19"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "ichthus"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B76"] [WhiteElo "1792"] [BlackElo "1868"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "35"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 {Sicilian Defense: Old Sicilian. Normal} 5. Nc3 g6 (5... e5 6. Ndb5 d6 7. Bg5 a6 8. Na3 b5 (8... Be6 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation, Bird Variation}) 9. Bxf6 (9. Nd5 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation, Sveshnikov Variation, Chelyabinsk Variation} ) 9... gxf6 10. Nd5 f5 11. Bxb5 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation. Sveshnikov Variation Peresypkin's Sacrifice}) 6. Be3 Bg7 7. Qd2 O-O 8. O-O-O Qa5 (8... Ng4 9. Nxc6 bxc6 10. Bg5 Rb8 11. Bc4 Qb6 12. Bb3 Qxf2 13. Rdf1 Qxd2+ 14. Kxd2 Bh6 15. Bxh6 Nxh6 16. Rf4 d6 17. h3 Be6 18. g4 Bxb3 19. axb3 f6 20. Ra1 Rb7 21. Ra6 Rc8 22. Rf1 Nf7 23. Rfa1 {Dengler,P (2330)-Schindler,W (2295) Bayern 1994 0-1 (56)}) 9. Be2 $146 (9. Nb3 Qc7 10. Bf4 (10. Bh6 a5 11. Bxg7 Kxg7 12. f4 a4 13. Nd4 Nxd4 14. Qxd4 Qxf4+ 15. Kb1 d6 16. g3 Qg5 17. Nxa4 Qa5 18. Nc3 Be6 19. Bc4 Bxc4 20. Qxc4 Rfc8 21. Qb3 Rc7 22. Rdf1 Rf8 23. h3 Qa6 24. Nd5 Nxd5 {Verhasselt,K (1596)-Barbier,A (1660) Bruges 2012 1/2-1/2 (45)}) 10... d6 11. Bb5 a6 12. Nd5 Qd8 13. Nxf6+ exf6 14. Bxc6 bxc6 15. Bxd6 Re8 16. Ba3 Qxd2+ 17. Rxd2 Bh6 18. Rhd1 Bxd2+ 19. Rxd2 Be6 20. Nc5 Rad8 21. Re2 Bg4 22. f3 Be6 23. e5 Bxa2 {Foldes,M (1159)-Gil Ojeda,L Tenerife 2015 1-0 (52)}) (9. Bc4 Ne5 10. Bb3 a6 11. h4 b5 12. a3 b4 13. Nb1 Nxe4 14. Qe1 Qc7 15. Qxb4 e6 16. Nxe6 dxe6 17. Qxe4 Bb7 18. Qb4 Bxg2 19. Rhe1 Nf3 20. Bb6 Qb7 21. Re3 Bh6 22. Ba4 Rab8 23. Bc5 Qxb4 {Kanteraki,M (1171)-Mashchenko,T Al Ain 2013 0-1}) (9. f3 d6 $16) 9... d6 $14 10. f3 {Covers g4} Nxd4 11. Bxd4 Be6 {Black threatens to win material: Be6xa2} 12. Kb1 {B76 Sicilian Dragon: Yugoslav Attack, 9.g4 and 9.O-O-O} Kh8 (12... Rfc8 $5 {is interesting} 13. a3 Rab8 $11) 13. g4 $16 Rac8 14. b3 (14. a3 $5 $16) 14... a6 {Consolidates b5} 15. h4 h5 (15... Nd7 16. Nd5 Qxd2 17. Rxd2 Bxd5 18. exd5 $11) 16. gxh5 Nxh5 17. Kb2 {White king safety dropped} (17. Qh6+ Kg8 18. Bxg7 Nxg7 19. Nd5 Bxd5 20. Rxd5 $11 (20. exd5 $2 Rxc2 21. Kxc2 Qxa2+ 22. Kc3 b5 (22... Qxe2 $6 23. Qd2 Rc8+ 24. Kb2 Qxf3 25. Rhf1 $19) 23. Bxb5 axb5 $19)) 17... Ng3 $4 {ignoring the path to victory} ( 17... Kh7 $142 $15 {the only rescuing move}) 18. Qh6+ (18. Qh6+ Kg8 19. Qxg7#) 1-0

15 Nov 2017

B85 Sicilian Scheveningen: 6.Be2 a6, lines with early Be3 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Be2 e6 7.O-O a6 8.Be3 Be7 9.f4 Qc7 10.Bf3 O-O 11.Qe1 Nxd4 12.Bxd4 e5 13.Be3 b5)

B85 Sicilian Scheveningen: 6.Be2 a6, lines with early Be3 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.Be2 e6 7.O-O a6 8.Be3 Be7 9.f4 Qc7 10.Bf3 O-O 11.Qe1 Nxd4 12.Bxd4 e5 13.Be3 b5)

This one was played in a team match called LullabyVisca vs !♔NM Aww-Rats Free Video Lessons!♔ at Chess.com. The match was played on 90 boards and I played on board 20 for LullabyVisca, out of the two games I was only able to win this game, the other game I lost. The match ended with a score of 99 - 81 in our favor, according to Chess.com. The comment section of the match is full of accusations between two players and about the real score of the match, but I am not going to go into that rabbit hole here. The first blunder of the game was seen when my opponent played 17...f6. Up to that point both players were able to play good moves.

Cratercat played 17...f6, which gave me a chance for a clear advantage, had I replied with 18.Bg4. Instead of trying to get advantage of the weakened light squares around the king, I moved my pawn to f5 in an attempt to open a diagonal for my dark-squared bishop and focus on the square g7. The second blunder by my opponent came quickly after this when Cratercat played 19...Qc6.

Moving the queen to c6 was horrible because I could have replied with 20.b4 and my opponent would have needed to loss some material. If the knight would go to d7, then a line like 21.Bh6 Bf8 22.Rxd6 might occur and it would be clear that Cratercat's position is lost. The same idea can be seen in the following continuation 20...Na4 21.Nxa4 bxa4 22.Bh6 Bf8 23.Rxd6. Actually the engine thinks that it is better to just give up the knight on c5 after b4 and move the queen to e8 instead at depth 28. I played 20.Nd5 in the game, which was enough for a winning advantage. It was answered with 20...Bd8, making the position of my opponent even worse. Now that the bishop could no longer come in the defense of g7, I decided to threaten mate with 21.Bh6. It was easily dealt with the reply 21...Qd7. Again pushing my pawn to b4 was my strongest alternative on move 21. Had I done that I would have been on my way to win the game. After the queen had moved to d7, I finally played b4, but at that time the reason why it would have been a strong move earlier had already disappeared.

Cratercat moved the threatened knight to a4, since it was the only safe square for the piece, but it was a better idea to take on d5 first. The move 22...Na4 gave me an opportunity to play 23.Nxf6+, which would have probably ended the game quicker due to the continuation 23...Bxf6 24.Rxd6 Qf7 25.Rd7. I was not paying enough attention to the position and played the horrible move 23.Kh1 for some incomprehensible reason. At that moment I was actually slightly worse, luckily for me, my opponent made the game losing move next. Cratercat played 23...Nc3, which lost material by force.

I finally found the refutation to one of my opponent's blunders and the game continued with the moves 24.Nxc3 Rxc3 25.Rxd6 Qf7. At that time I was not only up a pawn in material, but I also could have started a forced mate in three sequence with 26.Rxd8+. I obviously was not thinking my reply to 25...Qf7 all that much, because I chose the move 26.Rd7 instead of the forced mate... The line I chose easily wins the game as well, but I could have avoided some unnecessary moves, had I gone with the strongest continuation.

[Event "LullabyVisca vs !?NM Aww-Rats Free Vid"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2015.08.19"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "Cratercat"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B85"] [WhiteElo "1874"] [BlackElo "1743"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "69"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 {Sicilian Defense: Old Sicilian. Normal} 5. Nc3 d6 (5... e5 6. Nxc6 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation, Exchange Variation} (6. Nb3 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation, Schlechter Variation}) (6. Ndb5 d6 7. Bg5 a6 8. Na3 b5 9. Bxf6 gxf6 10. Nd5 Bg7 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation, Sveshnikov Variation, Novosibirsk Variation})) 6. Be2 e6 7. O-O a6 8. Be3 Be7 9. f4 Qc7 10. Bf3 O-O 11. Qe1 Nxd4 12. Bxd4 e5 13. Be3 b5 {B85 Sicilian Scheveningen: 6.Be2 a6, lines with early Be3} 14. a3 Bb7 15. Qg3 (15. Rd1 Bc6 16. f5 a5 17. g4 Qb7 18. Nd5 Bxd5 19. exd5 e4 20. g5 exf3 21. gxf6 Bxf6 22. Bd4 Rfe8 23. Qg3 Bxd4+ 24. Rxd4 Qb6 25. c3 Re4 26. f6 g6 27. Rfd1 Rae8 28. Qxf3 R4e5 29. Qf2 Rf5 {Paoli,E (2270)-Ornstein,A (2430) Eksjo 1975 0-1 (49)}) 15... Rfc8 $146 (15... Nd7 16. f5 Bf6 17. Qg4 Nb6 18. Be2 Nc4 19. Bxc4 Qxc4 20. Qh5 Bxe4 21. g4 g6 22. Qh3 Bh8 23. f6 Bb7 24. Qh4 Qc6 25. Qg3 d5 26. Bg5 d4 27. Nd1 Qxc2 28. Rc1 Qe4 29. Re1 Qd5 30. Rxe5 { Potievskaya,A (1884) -Gudkov,G (1865) Petrozavodsk 2012 1/2-1/2 (38)}) (15... Kh8 16. Rad1 Bc6 (16... Rac8 17. Kh1 Rfe8 18. fxe5 dxe5 19. Nd5 Bxd5 20. exd5 Bd6 21. Qh3 e4 22. Bg4 Nxg4 23. Qxg4 f6 24. h4 Qe7 25. c3 a5 26. h5 Rf8 27. Rf5 h6 28. Bf4 Rc4 29. Re1 Re8 30. Qg6 Bxf4 31. Rxf4 {Jacek,K (2126) -Kowalski,M (1756) Koszalin 2012 1-0 (57)}) 17. Rd3 a5 18. Rfd1 b4 19. Nd5 Bxd5 20. exd5 e4 21. R3d2 exf3 22. Qxf3 bxa3 23. bxa3 Nd7 24. Bf2 Bf6 25. Qd3 Rac8 26. Rb1 Rb8 27. Rdd1 Rxb1 28. Rxb1 Rb8 29. Qd1 Rxb1 30. Qxb1 {Cwiek,P (1730) -Choisy,M (2094) La Roche sur Yon 2008 0-1 (42)}) 16. Rad1 Nd7 17. Rd2 f6 $2 (17... exf4 18. Bxf4 Ne5 19. Bh5 $11) 18. f5 $4 {Black has a cramped position. White loses the upper hand} (18. Bg4 $5 $16) 18... Nc5 (18... Nb6 19. Rd3 $11) 19. Rfd1 ( 19. Qh4 $142 $14) 19... Qc6 $4 (19... Na4 $142 {and Black can hope to live} 20. Nxa4 bxa4 $11) 20. Nd5 (20. b4 $142 {seems even better} Qe8 21. bxc5 Rxc5 22. Bxc5 dxc5 $18) 20... Bd8 $4 {sad, but how else could Black save the game?} ( 20... Qd7 $142 21. Nxe7+ Qxe7 22. Rxd6 Qf8 23. Bxc5 Rxc5 $18) 21. Bh6 {White has a mate threat} (21. b4 $142 {secures the win} Qe8 22. bxc5 $18) 21... Qd7 $14 {Black has a cramped position} 22. b4 {White threatens to win material: b4xc5} Na4 $4 (22... Bxd5 $142 23. bxc5 Bc6 $14) 23. Kh1 (23. Nxf6+ $142 { ends the debate} Bxf6 24. Rxd6 $18) 23... Nc3 $4 {stumbles just before the finish line} (23... Qf7 $142 {was a good chance to save the game} 24. Rc1 Kh8 $15) 24. Nxc3 $18 Rxc3 (24... Bc7 $18 {otherwise it's curtains at once}) 25. Rxd6 Qf7 (25... g5 {is not the saving move} 26. Rxd7 Bd5 27. Bxg5 Rxf3 28. gxf3 fxg5 29. Qxe5 Bf7 30. Rxd8+ Rxd8 31. Rxd8+ Be8 32. Rxe8+ Kf7 33. Qe7#) 26. Rd7 (26. Rxd8+ Rxd8 27. Rxd8+ Qe8 28. Qxg7#) 26... Be7 $18 27. Rxb7 Rxc2 28. h3 ( 28. Bh5 Qf8 29. Rdd7 Rac8 30. Qb3+ Kh8 31. Rxe7 Rc1+ 32. Bd1 Qxe7 33. Rxe7 gxh6 34. h3 Rg8 35. Qf7 Rxd1+ 36. Kh2 Rxg2+ 37. Kxg2 Rd2+ 38. Kf3 Rd3+ 39. Ke2 Rd2+ 40. Kxd2 a5 41. Qxh7#) 28... Kh8 29. Be3 (29. Rdd7 gxh6 30. Rxe7 Rc1+ 31. Kh2 Qg8 32. Rg7 h5 33. Bxh5 Rd8 34. Rxg8+ Rxg8 35. Bg6 Rg7 36. Rb8+ Rg8 37. Qh4 Rc7 38. Qxf6+ Rcg7 39. Rxg8+ Kxg8 40. Qd8#) 29... Qf8 30. Rdd7 Re8 31. Ra7 (31. Bh5 Rb8 32. Rxb8 Qxb8 33. Rxe7 Qf8 34. Rf7 Qg8 35. Bg6 a5 36. Qh4 Rc8 37. Re7 a4 38. Bh6 Rd8 39. Bxg7+ Qxg7 40. Rxg7 Rd1+ 41. Kh2 h5 42. Qxh5+ Kxg7 43. Qh7+ Kf8 44. Qf7#) 31... Ra2 32. Bc5 (32. Bh5 Ra8 33. Rxa8 Qxa8 34. Rxe7 Ra1+ 35. Kh2 Qf8 36. Re8 Qxe8 37. Bxe8 Rxa3 38. Qf2 a5 39. Qd2 Rd3 40. Qxd3 g5 41. Qd8 a4 42. Qxf6+ Kg8 43. Bf7+ Kf8 44. Bc5#) 32... Ra1+ (32... Rd2 {doesn't do any good } 33. Rxd2 Bxc5 34. bxc5 Re7 35. Rxe7 Qxe7 36. c6 b4 37. Rd7 Qf8 38. c7 g5 39. fxg6 Qc5 40. gxh7 Qc1+ 41. Kh2 Qg1+ 42. Kxg1 b3 43. c8=Q#) 33. Kh2 Bxc5 (33... Ra8 {doesn't get the cat off the tree} 34. Rxa8 Qxa8 35. Bh5 a5 36. Bxe7 Qc8 37. Rd8+ Qxd8 38. Bxd8 Rc1 39. Qd3 Kg8 40. Qd5+ Kh8 41. Qxb5 Rh1+ 42. Kxh1 g6 43. Bxf6+ Kg8 44. Qe8#) 34. bxc5 Rxa3 (34... g5 {hardly improves anything} 35. fxg6 Kg8 36. Rg7+ Kh8 37. Rxh7+ Kg8 38. Rh8+ Kxh8 39. Qh4+ Qh6 40. Qxh6+ Kg8 41. Qg7#) 35. Rxg7 (35. Rxg7 Qg8 36. Rxg8+ Rxg8 37. Qh4 Rxg2+ 38. Bxg2 Rxh3+ 39. Bxh3 h6 40. Qxf6+ Kg8 41. Qg7#) 1-0

14 Nov 2017

B73 Sicilian Dragon: Classical System without 9.Nb3 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 d6 7.O-O g6 8.Be3 Bg7 9.f4 O-O 10.Kh1)

B73 Sicilian Dragon: Classical System without 9.Nb3 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 d6 7.O-O g6 8.Be3 Bg7 9.f4 O-O 10.Kh1)

This is my second challenge game against quagliarellasabino and my second win against this player and at this point I thought that I could win games against almost anybody. I had quite good results in games that were finished on one sitting. The first position that I will take a look at is the one seen after the move 10.Kh1. In the game quagliarellasabino played e5, which would have allowed me to destroy my opponent's pawn structure, had I went for the continuation 11.Nxc6 bxc6 12.fxe5 dxe5 13.Bg5 and then my opponent would have had some problems with the knight on f6. It would have been clear at that point that I would be the one with the initiative.

I should really remember this idea when I end up in a similar position in the future, because I have instinctively moved my knight to b3 in these types of positions before. The position should be roughly even after my 11th move Nb3. Then my opponent made an even bigger blunder than on the previous move, and moved the queen to c7. Much better alternatives for quagliarellasabino were 11...exf4, 11...b5 and 11...Re8. In order to take advantage of the blunder, I needed to reply with 12.fxe5 and the idea is that my opponent can't really take back the pawn because if he or she does, quagliarellasabino would lose even more material. An example line might go 12...dxe5 13.Rxf6 Bxf6 14.Nd5 Qd8 15.Bb6 Qd6 and after 16.Bc7 I would end up in a position that would be easily winning. I obviously missed this great opportunity and instead connected the rooks with the move 12.Qd2. I should still be in the favorable side of the board even after the game continuation, but the likely result would probably a draw. That is if neither side blunders, like my opponent did in the game by playing the move 12...Be6.

I had third consecutive chance to get a good advantage, but once again I failed to see the correct idea, this time my path towards victory would have started with the move 13.f5. The reason I probably decided not to play 13.f5 was that I disliked the look of 13...gxf5 14.exf5, which creates a protected passed pawn for my opponent. It would have also ruined the pawn cover in front of quagliarellasabino's king. Maybe I also thought that maybe my opponent can play Kh8 and Rg8 and maybe use the opened g-file for attack. That being said, it does seem rather silly to me now. In the game I played 13.Bf3, with the idea of getting the square d5 more firmly in my control. The bishop unfortunately is not well placed at f3 and it is almost like a tall pawn there and it also blocks the path of my rook. It did not take long for the next horrible move to be seen on the board, the move 15...Rfd8 created some problems once again for my opponent.

Again I had the possibility to play f5, but instead I played 16.Qf2, which threatened the move 17.Bb6. It was a good move, but not as strong as 16.f5. Quagliarellasabino saw the threat of Bb6, but replied to it incorrectly by moving the queen to e7. The best move, according to the engine seems to be 16...exf4, but even that continuation should clearly favor me. I would have probably then played Bb6, which actually is not as good as taking on f4. Keeping the good dark-squared bishop alive and not trading it to the passive rook seems to be the right idea. With correct play I should be winning after my opponent's 16th move, but I kept ignoring the strongest move f5 and went to a more evenly fought continuation by placing my f-rook to e1. Then the game continued to be played evenly up to the move 29.Rb4, which was surprising, considering the amount of mistakes during the first 16 moves.

Quagliarellasabino played in the game 29...b6, which placed the pawn on a more shaky square. It was rather well protected at b7, since there was no easy way for me to attack the pawn there, but on b6 it became much more vulnerable attacks. It also took away some squares from the rook on c6, a fact that I could have taken advantage of by playing Bb5, followed by Be3, for instance, but in the game I preferred to play Be3 first for some reason. Maybe I thought that I can do it in this order too, but I was mistaken and Bb5 is clearly the better move to make. Both players avoided making mistakes up to the move 36...Qb3 and for the first time in the game I was the one who ended up being clearly lost when I moved my rook to e1 on move 37.

My move was so bad because my opponent could have replied with the crushing move 37...Qb8!! I would have likely resigned the game, had I seen that move. Quagliarellasabino did not see that and played 37...Be5, which is a strong move, but not as game ending as 37...Qb8. I wanted to hold on to the material, so moved my queen to h4, thinking that I may survive after all. Actually my best chance was to take the bishop. Had I done that though, I might have just resigned. My opponent should have then played 38...Bf6 and I would have likely continued with Qg3, which would have allowed Qb8 to be played once again. Luckily for me, quagliarellasabino chose to trade the rooks, after which the position had become even again. On move 40 it was my opponent's turn to blunder and my journey towards a win could have started for one more time.

Quagliarellasabino played 40...Qe6, which was not a good idea because I could have brought my bishop into play via c5. Instead I played 41.c4, which made the advancement of the pawns a bit difficult. It lead into an even position and we kept making good enough moves to hold the equality up to the move 49.Kc3. With my opponent's 49th move Qc1+, quagliarellasabino's final downhill began.

Even though I replied with the rather bad move 50.Kd3, I should still be clearly better. B3 was actually a much better square for the king. Quagliarellasabino replied by moving the queen to g1, which was the final nail in the coffin, after that it was clear that I am going to win the game, well up to the move 54...Bd6 at least.

The last move of the game, 55.Qd2, is actually only good enough for a draw. Unfortunately for my opponent, he or she lost the game on time.

[Event "Challenge 32697460"] [Site "online arena"] [Date "2015.08.22"] [Round "1"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "quagliarellasabino"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B73"] [WhiteElo "1789"] [BlackElo "1738"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "109"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 {Sicilian Defense: Old Sicilian. Normal} 5. Nc3 a6 (5... e5 6. Ndb5 (6. Nf3 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation, Retreat Variation}) 6... d6 7. Bg5 a6 8. Na3 b5 (8... Be6 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation, Bird Variation}) 9. Nd5 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation, Sveshnikov Variation, Chelyabinsk Variation}) 6. Be2 d6 7. O-O g6 8. Be3 Bg7 9. f4 O-O 10. Kh1 {B73 Sicilian Dragon: Classical System without 9.Nb3} e5 (10... Nxd4 11. Bxd4 b5 12. e5 dxe5 13. fxe5 Nd7 14. e6 fxe6 15. Bxg7 Kxg7 16. Rxf8 Qxf8 17. Qd2 Nf6 18. Bf3 Ra7 19. Ne4 Rd7 20. Qe2 Qd8 21. Rf1 Qb6 22. Ng5 Rd6 23. Bg4 h6 24. Ne4 Rd5 25. Bf3 {Ruxton,K (2325) -Borge,N (2245) Arnhem 1989 0-1 (65)}) 11. Nb3 (11. Nxc6 bxc6 12. f5 d5 13. Bc5 Re8 14. fxg6 hxg6 15. Bf3 Be6 16. Qe2 Nd7 17. Ba3 Nf6 18. Rad1 Qa5 19. Qe1 d4 20. Nd5 Qxe1 21. Nxf6+ Bxf6 22. Rdxe1 Be7 23. Bxe7 Rxe7 24. Be2 a5 25. a3 Rb7 { Farnault,E (2032) -Wolff,M (1643) Berlin 2015 0-1 (57)}) 11... Qc7 12. Qd2 { White has an active position} Be6 $146 (12... b5 13. a3 Bb7 14. fxe5 Nxe5 15. Bd3 Neg4 16. Bf4 Nh5 17. h3 Ne5 18. Bh6 Ng3+ 19. Kh2 Nxe4 20. Bxe4 {0-1 (20) Arnav,D-Ulhas,V (1867) Nagpur 2008}) (12... Ne7 $142 $16) 13. Bf3 $4 {gives the opponent new chances} (13. f5 $5 Bxb3 14. axb3 $18) 13... Rac8 (13... exf4 14. Bxf4 Ne5 15. Be2 $11) 14. Rad1 (14. f5 Bc4 15. Rfd1 b5 $14) 14... Bxb3 ( 14... exf4 $5 15. Bxf4 Ne5 $11) 15. axb3 {White has the pair of bishops} Rfd8 ( 15... exf4 16. Bxf4 Ne5 17. Be2 $14) 16. Qf2 (16. f5 gxf5 17. exf5 d5 $18) 16... Qe7 (16... exf4 17. Bxf4 Ne5 $16) 17. Rfe1 (17. f5 $142 {and the scales tip in favour of White} d5 18. Nxd5 Nxd5 19. exd5 $18) 17... exf4 $14 18. Bxf4 {Attacking the isolated pawn on d6} Ne5 {A valuable piece} 19. Nd5 (19. Bg5 $5 {must definitely be considered} Rf8 20. Nd5 $14) 19... Nxd5 $11 20. Rxd5 { The rook dominates} (20. exd5 Qf6 21. Bxe5 dxe5 22. g4 $15) 20... Rc6 (20... Nxf3 $142 $5 21. gxf3 Bxb2 $17) 21. c3 $11 Rdc8 22. Red1 Qe6 23. h3 {Secures g4 } h5 24. Be2 Kh7 25. Qg3 Rb6 (25... Re8 26. Qe3 $14) 26. b4 $14 Rbc6 27. b5 axb5 28. Rxb5 R8c7 29. Rb4 b6 (29... Nc4 30. Qf2 $11) 30. Be3 (30. Qe1 Ra7 $16) 30... Nc4 31. Bxc4 (31. Bg1 $142 $5 $16) 31... Rxc4 $11 32. Rxb6 {Increasing the pressure on the isolated pawn on d6} Rxe4 33. Bf4 {White threatens to win material: Bf4xd6} (33. Bg1 Be5 34. Qf3 Rf4 $11) 33... Rd7 (33... Rc5 34. Rb4 $15 (34. Rbxd6 $2 {doesn't lead to anything significant} Qf5 35. Be3 Be5 $19) ( 34. Rdxd6 {once again taking the pawn is naive} Qf5 35. Rb4 Rxb4 36. cxb4 Rc4 $19)) 34. Rbxd6 (34. Bxd6 Be5 35. Qd3 Bxd6 36. Rxd6 Re1+ 37. Kh2 Qe5+ 38. Qg3 Qxg3+ (38... Rxd1 $6 {is a bad alternative} 39. Qxe5 R7xd6 40. b4 $11) 39. Kxg3 Rxd1 $19) (34. Rdxd6 $4 Rxd6 35. Rxd6 Qf5 $19) 34... Rxd6 35. Bxd6 {White has a new protected passed pawn: c3} (35. Rxd6 $4 Qc4 36. Rd1 Rxf4 $19) 35... Re2 { Black threatens to win material: Re2xb2} 36. Ba3 Qb3 37. Re1 $4 {White lets it slip away} (37. Rf1 $142 $11 {and White hangs on}) 37... Be5 $17 38. Qh4 $2 ( 38. Qxe5 $142 Rxe5 39. Rxe5 $17) 38... Rxe1+ $4 {gives away a clear win} (38... Bf6 $142 $1 {finishes off the opponent} 39. Qxf6 Rxe1+ 40. Kh2 Re2 $19) 39. Qxe1 $11 Qd5 40. Qe2 Qe6 (40... Bb8 41. Kg1 $11) 41. c4 (41. Bc5 $142 $5 Qf5 42. Bg1 $16) 41... Qf5 $11 {Black has a mate threat} 42. g4 {White threatens to win material: g4xf5} Qf4 43. gxh5 Qc1+ 44. Kg2 Qg5+ 45. Kf2 Qg3+ ({Worse is } 45... gxh5 46. Qe4+ Kh8 47. Ke2 $16) 46. Kf1 Qxh3+ {Black forks: h5} 47. Ke1 Qh1+ 48. Kd2 Bf4+ (48... Qxh5 49. c5 $11) 49. Kc3 (49. Kd3 $142 Qh3+ 50. Kc2 Qxh5 51. Qd3 Qh2+ 52. Kb3 $11) 49... Qc1+ (49... gxh5 $142 $5 {should not be overlooked} 50. Qd3+ Kg8 $11) 50. Kd3 (50. Kb3 $142 g5 51. Ka4 $16) 50... Qg1 $4 {another step towards the grave} (50... Qb1+ $142 51. Kd4 Qg1+ 52. Ke4 g5 $16) 51. hxg6+ $18 Qxg6+ (51... Kxg6 52. c5 Qc1 53. Bb4 $18) 52. Kc3 (52. Qe4 Bc7 53. c5 f5 54. Qe7+ Kh6 55. Qxc7 f4+ 56. Kd2 Qg2+ 57. Kc3 Qf3+ 58. Kb4 Qe4+ 59. Ka5 f3 $18) 52... Qf6+ 53. Kb3 Qb6+ (53... Kg6 54. Qd3+ Qf5 55. Kc2 $18) 54. Bb4 Bd6 (54... Bc7 {there is nothing else anyway} 55. Qe4+ Kg7 $18) 55. Qd2 (55. Qd2 Bc5 56. Ka4 Qc6+ 57. Ka3 Qa6+ 58. Kb3 $11) (55. Qd3+ f5 56. Qxf5+ Kh6 57. Qe6+ Kh7 58. Qd7+ Kg8 59. Qxd6 Qe3+ 60. Bc3 Kh7 61. Qc7+ Kg6 62. Qg7+ Kf5 63. Qf6+ Kg4 64. Qd4+ Qxd4 65. Bxd4 Kf4 66. c5 Kf5 67. c6 Ke6 68. Bc5 Kd5 69. c7 Kxc5 70. c8=Q+ Kd6 71. Qf5 Ke7 72. Kc4 Kd6 73. Kb5 Kc7 74. Qe5+ Kb7 75. Qe7+ Kc8 76. Kc6 Kb8 77. Qb7#) 1-0

13 Nov 2017

B46 Sicilian: Taimanov, 5.Nc3 a6 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e6 7.O-O Be7 8.Be3 O-O)

B46 Sicilian: Taimanov, 5.Nc3 a6 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e6 7.O-O Be7 8.Be3 O-O)

This is taken from the fourth round of the 15 minute tournament that was played March 21st 2015 at the FIDE Online Arena. This was also the last round game and I ended the tournament with a score of three wins and one loss. The game started to go clearly wrong for vincenzo48 already on move 9. The problem with the move is that I could have replied with e5 and the knight would have needed to move to maybe d5 and I could have doubled vincenzo48's pawns. The only other option would have been to move the knight to e8, but that would have been a really horrible square for the knight.

I had unfortunately too passive mind set once again and played 10.a3, in order to prevent b4. After that the position ought to be even. The equality remained until I played the sloppy move 29.Qf6. I did end up on the worse side of the board after that. My opponent replied correctly with 29...Qc5+ and then I went from being slightly worse to being clearly worse with the move 30.Kg2. My best option was to move my king to h1.

In the game vincenzo48 played 30...Rdd6, which allowed me to get back into the game. The best move for my opponent seems to be 30...e5, because that way vincenzo48 would have been able to get a protected passed pawn. The game continued evenly after that up to the move 32.Kh3. Both players then blundered, first my opponent with the move 32...Rd7 and then me with the move 33.Qg5. While neither move was bad enough to lose the game, they were enough to shift the advantage from one side to the other, with my 33rd move even clearly to the side of my opponent.

The game continued with the moves 33...Kg7 34.Re5 and then for the last time my opponent blundered and moved the queen to d6. Moving the the queen to c4, a2 or b3 would have kept vincenzo48 clearly fighting for the win. With that one unfortunate queen move the game continued to be played equally to its completion. The only reason I was the winner is due to the fact that my opponent ran out of time a few moves later.

Game number two. This game is taken from the 2014 August Grand Seven Fourteen II tournament and it was played at Red Hot Pawn. This was the first tournament I have ever won at RHP and currently it is also the only one I have been able to win! Even though I ended up winning this game, it was me who ended up being on the clearly worse side of the board when I played 16.f3. Apsol did not find the strongest reply, 16...d5, which was also the starting point for the path towards a clear advantage. Apsol chose the move 16...Nc4, after which my opponent has only a slight advantage.

The next turning point came when apsol played 19...exd5 and the balance shifted slightly in my favor. A few moves later my opponent made the huge game losing blunder 22...Qc8 and after that it was very easy game for me to win.

I did obviously find the fork on e7, but apsol did not resign yet, my opponent continued for a couple of moves before he or she resigned after 25.Rfe1.

[Event "Tournament 28099658"] [Site "online arena"] [Date "2015.03.21"] [Round "4"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "vincenzo48"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B46"] [WhiteElo "1831"] [BlackElo "1505"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "77"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 {Sicilian Defense: Old Sicilian. Normal} 5. Nc3 a6 (5... e5 6. Ndb5 (6. Nb3 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation. Schlechter Variation}) 6... d6 7. Bg5 a6 8. Na3 b5 9. Bxf6 gxf6 10. Nd5 Bg7 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation. Sveshnikov Variation Novosibirsk Variation} (10... f5 11. Bxb5 {Sicilian Defense: Lasker-Pelikan Variation. Sveshnikov Variation Peresypkin's Sacrifice})) 6. Be2 e6 7. O-O Be7 8. Be3 O-O {B46 Sicilian: Taimanov, 5.Nc3 a6} 9. f4 b5 (9... d5 10. e5 Nd7 11. Kh1 (11. Rf3 Nxd4 12. Bxd4 b5 13. Bd3 f5 14. Rh3 Nc5 15. Qh5 h6 16. Qg6 Kh8 17. Rg3 Rg8 18. Rh3 Rf8 19. Rg3 Rg8 20. Qh5 Qe8 21. Qh3 Qf7 22. Be2 Bd7 23. Bh5 g6 24. Bf3 Kh7 25. Re1 Rac8 {Toth,L (1727)-Hadrik,C (1949) Hungary 2016 1-0}) 11... Nxd4 12. Bxd4 Bc5 13. Bxc5 Nxc5 14. Qd4 Qb6 15. Rab1 Nd7 16. Qd3 f6 17. exf6 Nxf6 18. Bf3 Bd7 19. Rfe1 Qc7 20. Re5 Rac8 21. Rbe1 b5 22. a3 Qc4 23. f5 Qxd3 24. cxd3 {Moiseev,V (2480)-Milanesi,B Oberwart 1991 1/2-1/2 (50)}) 10. a3 Bb7 $146 (10... Bc5 11. Bf2 Qb6 12. Nxc6 Bxf2+ 13. Rxf2 dxc6 14. e5 Rd8 15. Qf1 Nd5 16. Nxd5 Rxd5 17. Bd3 a5 18. Kh1 g6 19. Rf3 Bb7 20. Rg3 b4 21. Bc4 Rd2 22. Bb3 Rad8 23. axb4 Rf2 24. Qg1 Rdd2 25. Rf3 {Bratkovic,J (1941)-Gratton,D (1733) Nova Gorica 2013 1/2-1/2}) 11. Nxc6 Bxc6 12. Bd3 d5 13. exd5 Nxd5 14. Nxd5 Bxd5 15. Qh5 g6 {Prevents intrusion on f5} 16. Qg4 f5 {Black threatens to win material: f5xg4} (16... Bf6 17. Rab1 $15) 17. Qe2 $11 Rc8 18. c3 {Consolidates b4} Qd6 19. Bd4 Qc6 20. Rf2 Bc5 21. Qe5 Bxd4 {Black forks: f2+e5} 22. Qxd4 Rfd8 23. Qe3 Bc4 24. Bxc4 Qxc4 25. Re1 Rc6 26. Rfe2 Rd3 27. Qe5 Rdd6 28. g3 Rd5 { Black threatens to win material: Rd5xe5} 29. Qf6 {Attacks the backward pawn on e6} (29. Qb8+ $5 {deserves consideration} Rc8 30. Qb7 $11) 29... Qc5+ $17 30. Kg2 (30. Kh1 e5 31. Qg5 $15) 30... Rdd6 (30... e5 $142 $5 31. Qg5 e4 $17) 31. Qe7 Qd5+ 32. Kh3 Rd7 (32... Rb6 $142 $11) 33. Qg5 $4 {White is ruining his position} (33. Qe8+ $142 Kg7 34. Re5 $16) 33... Kg7 $17 34. Re5 Qd6 (34... Qc4 $142 $5 35. Qh4 h6 $19) 35. g4 {White threatens to win material: g4xf5} h6 { Black threatens to win material: h6xg5} 36. Qh4 Qd3+ (36... Qd2 37. R1e3 Qd1 38. gxf5 Qf1+ 39. Kg3 gxf5 40. Qh3 Qxh3+ 41. Kxh3 $15) 37. R5e3 $11 {White threatens to win material: Re3xd3} Qd6 38. gxf5 exf5 39. Re7+ (39. Re7+ Rxe7 40. Rxe7+ Kf8 41. Re3 $11) 1-0 [Event "Grand Seven Fourteen"] [Site "http://www.redhotpawn.com"] [Date "2014.08.11"] [Round "1"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "apsol"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B46"] [WhiteElo "1871"] [BlackElo "1650"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "49"] [EventDate "2014.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 e6 {Sicilian Defense: Four Knights Variation} 6. Be2 (6. Ndb5 Bc5 {Sicilian Defense: Four Knights Variation, Cobra Variation}) (6. Nxc6 {Sicilian Defense: Four Knights Variation, Exchange Variation}) 6... Be7 7. O-O O-O 8. Be3 a6 {B46 Sicilian: Taimanov, 5.Nc3 a6} 9. h3 $146 {Black has a cramped position. Black's piece can't move: c8} (9. a3 d6 (9... b5 10. Nxc6 dxc6 11. Qxd8 Rxd8 12. Bb6 Rd7 13. Rfd1 Rb8 14. Ba5 Rbb7 15. b4 Rxd1+ 16. Rxd1 Rd7 17. e5 Nd5 18. Ne4 f5 19. exf6 Nxf6 20. Rxd7 Bxd7 21. Bf3 h6 22. h3 Nd5 23. Kf1 Kf7 24. Ke2 {Genzor,M (1643) -Uhrecky,U (1664) Slovakia 2015 1/2-1/2 (34)}) 10. Nf3 h6 11. Qd2 e5 12. h3 Be6 13. Nd5 Nxe4 14. Nxe7+ Nxe7 15. Qb4 Bd5 16. c4 a5 17. Qa4 Bc6 18. Qc2 Nf5 19. Rad1 Nxe3 20. fxe3 Qe7 21. Bd3 f5 22. Nd2 Ng3 23. Rf2 Qg5 {Aedo,L (1554)-Lopez, R (1805) La Florida 2003 0-1}) (9. Nxc6 bxc6 10. f4 d5 11. exd5 cxd5 12. Bd4 Qc7 13. Kh1 Bb7 14. Bd3 Rac8 15. Rf3 Ne4 16. Bxe4 dxe4 17. Rg3 f6 18. Qg4 Rf7 19. Qxe6 Qd6 20. Qb3 Qb4 21. Re3 Qxb3 22. cxb3 Bd6 23. g3 Rd7 {Knight,S (2104) -Ivanov,S (2261) Caleta 2010 0-1 (42)}) (9. Kh1 Qc7 10. Qe1 b5 11. Bd3 Ng4 12. Nf3 Bb7 13. h3 Nxe3 14. Qxe3 Bf6 15. Qd2 Rac8 16. Rac1 Rfd8 17. Rfe1 h6 18. Nd1 Ne5 19. Nxe5 Bxe5 20. Re2 d5 21. Qe1 Bf4 22. Ne3 dxe4 23. Bxe4 Bxe4 {Goulart, C-Farhat,S S Sebastiao do Paraiso 2001 1-0}) (9. f4 d5 10. exd5 Nxd4 11. Qxd4 exd5 12. Rad1 Bf5 13. Rd2 Ne4 14. Nxe4 Bxe4 15. Bf3 Bf6 16. Qb4 Bxf3 17. Rxf3 Qc7 18. Bd4 Bxd4+ 19. Qxd4 Rad8 20. Qc3 Qb6+ 21. Qd4 Qc7 22. Rc3 Qe7 23. Re3 Qf6 {Simo,J (2049)-Kobzak,G (1662) Hungary 2002 1-0 (46)}) 9... Qc7 {White has an active position} 10. Nb3 {White has a very active position} b5 {White has an active position} 11. a3 {White has a very active position} Bb7 {White has an active position} (11... Ne5 12. f4 Nc4 13. Bxc4 bxc4 14. Nd2 $11) 12. Qd2 { White has a very active position} (12. f4 b4 13. axb4 Nxb4 $11) 12... Rad8 ( 12... Ne5 13. Qd4 $15) 13. Nc5 Bc8 14. Rad1 (14. Nb3 d6 $11) 14... Ne5 $15 15. Nb3 {Black has a cramped position} Bb7 (15... Nc4 16. Bxc4 bxc4 17. Nd4 $17) 16. f3 {Covers g4} (16. Qd4 d5 17. Qb6 Qxb6 18. Bxb6 Rc8 $11) 16... Nc4 17. Bxc4 bxc4 18. Nd4 d5 19. exd5 exd5 {Black has an active position.} (19... Nxd5 $142 20. Nxd5 Rxd5 $17 (20... exd5 $6 21. Nf5 $11)) 20. Nf5 $14 Bc5 21. Bxc5 Qxc5+ 22. Qd4 Qc8 $4 (22... Qxd4+ $142 {was much better} 23. Nxd4 Rfe8 $14) 23. Ne7+ $18 Kh8 24. Nxc8 Rxc8 25. Rfe1 1-0

10 Nov 2017

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 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Qc7 7.Qg4 f5 8.exf6 Nxf6 9.Qg3)

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 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Qc7 7.Qg4 f5 8.exf6 Nxf6 9.Qg3)

This game was played in the invitational only mini-tournament called ichthus's mini-tournament v. 9 players participated in the tournament, which became the first mini-tournament I actually was able to win at GameKnot! Out of the 16 games I won 11, drew 4 and lost only one. However, two of those games were not played because one of the players withdrew from the tournament before it ended. In this very short draw I faced willy_13, who offered a draw in both of our games and both times I accepted the offer. In our other game draw was agreed upon after willy_13's 18th move, so neither game lasted that long. In both games I thought that I had already ended up on the worse side of the board, so accepting the draw seemed to be reasonable in both cases. This is almost not long enough game to be even shared in this blog and actually only the last move of the game, 11...c4, deviates from previously played games in my reference database. That being said, even in the theoretical part of the game, there is something to look at because the engine does not like the line all the way through.

Willy_13 played 7...f5 in the game, which is somewhat inaccurate, but my reply to it, 8.exf6 was even worse. It basically let my opponent off the hook a bit. I should not have taken taken en passant, because it allowed the knight development to f6, which is arguably a better square for the piece than e7. The last move that is considered to be theory according to Deep Fritz 14's opening classification, 9.Qg3, is not actually a good move according to Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT and it thinks that the position after the move is clearly favorable for Black at depth 42. I would not recommend this line for White.

Willy_13 should have played 9...Qa5 in reply, but instead my opponent traded queens, which resulted in a position that is roughly even. The rest of the moves played in the game were made accurately enough, so that neither player gained an advantage.

[Event "ichthus's mini-tournament v"] [Site "http://gameknot.com/chess.pl?"] [Date "2016.10.08"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "willy_13"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "C18"] [WhiteElo "1792"] [BlackElo "1913"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "22"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 c5 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 Qc7 {French Defense: Winawer Variation. Classical Variation} (6... Ne7 7. a4 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Advance Variation} (7. Nf3 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Positional Variation}) (7. Qg4 Qc7 8. Qxg7 Rg8 9. Qxh7 cxd4 10. Ne2 {French Defense: Winawer Variation. Poisoned Pawn Variation Main Line})) 7. Qg4 f5 8. exf6 Nxf6 9. Qg3 {C18 French: 3.Nc3 Bb4 Main line, 7.h4 and 7.Qg4} Qxg3 10. hxg3 Nc6 11. Nf3 (11. dxc5 e5 12. Nf3 O-O 13. Bb2 e4 14. Ng5 h6 15. Nh3 Bxh3 16. gxh3 Rad8 17. O-O-O Nh7 {1/2-1/2 (17) Fleck, J (2390)-Gross,K (2215) Germany 1985}) 11... c4 $146 (11... O-O 12. Bd3 Bd7 (12... c4 13. Be2 Ne4 14. Ng5 Nxc3 15. Nxh7 Nxe2 16. Be3 Nexd4 17. O-O-O e5 18. Nxf8 Bf5 19. c3 Nb3+ 20. Kb2 d4 21. g4 Bxg4 22. f3 Rxf8 23. cxd4 exd4 24. Bf2 Be6 25. Rde1 c3+ 26. Kc2 Bc4 27. Rh4 {Kaderabek,J (2234)-Richter,M (1996) Klatovy 2013 0-1}) 13. Rb1 c4 14. Be2 b6 15. O-O Ne4 16. Bb2 g5 17. Rbd1 Be8 18. Nd2 Bg6 19. Nxe4 Bxe4 20. Rd2 b5 21. Bg4 Bf5 22. Bxf5 exf5 23. Re2 Rfe8 24. Rfe1 Kf7 25. Bc1 h6 26. Be3 { Medvec,M (1872)-Karas,M (1951) Banska Stiavnica 2012 0-1 (48)}) 1/2-1/2

9 Nov 2017

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 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Qc7 7.Qg4 f5 8.Qh5+ Qf7 9.Qxf7+ Kxf7)

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 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Qc7 7.Qg4 f5 8.Qh5+ Qf7 9.Qxf7+ Kxf7)

The game below was played on the second round of the 2014 October Split II tournament at Red Hot Pawn. The winner of the second round also won the tournament. Four players fought for the win and my opponent in this game, NN Cheap, ended up winning the tournament, having gathered 15 points. I was on 3rd place in the final standings with 4 points. On the first round I was able to play a bit better against NN Cheap because I was able to get a win, but now on the second round I was not able to play well enough to offer much of a resistance to the winner of the tournament.

I was actually able to play decent moves up to the move 21.Bb4, before that I had only made some inaccurate moves, but after my 21st move I was for the first time on the worse side of the position. To make matters worse for me, I continued my downhill on my next move when I played 22.Bd6. I think both of my moves 21.Bb4 and 22.Bd6 are part of the same kind of problem, I did not understand the positional requirements, which meant that I put my bishop on squares where it actually does not do anything even if it looks good on d6, for example.

On d6 it eyes on some dark squares on NN Cheap's side of the board, which are not relevant for the position, at the moment anyway. Maybe if I had thought about that move a bit longer, I would have understood that playing moves like Bb4 and Bd6 do not really help me in any way. The move 22.Bd6, I consider to be the losing move, even though it was not completely lost like it was after 23.Rfe1.

[Event "Split"] [Site "http://www.redhotpawn.com"] [Date "2016.01.25"] [Round "2"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "NN Cheap"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "C18"] [WhiteElo "1929"] [BlackElo "2149"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "56"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 c5 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 Qc7 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Classical Variation} (6... Ne7 7. a4 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Advance Variation} (7. Qg4 Qc7 8. Qxg7 Rg8 9. Qxh7 cxd4 10. Ne2 {French Defense: Winawer Variation. Poisoned Pawn Variation Main Line}) (7. Nf3 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Positional Variation})) 7. Qg4 f5 8. Qh5+ Qf7 9. Qxf7+ Kxf7 {C18 French: 3.Nc3 Bb4 Main Line, 7.h4 and 7.Qg4} 10. Rb1 (10. Nf3 cxd4 11. Nxd4 Bd7 12. f4 Ne7 13. Rb1 b6 14. c4 Rc8 15. cxd5 Nxd5 16. Bd2 Nc7 17. Bc4 Ke8 18. O-O Nc6 19. Nf3 Ne7 20. Nd4 Nc6 21. Nf3 Ne7 22. Nd4 {1/2-1/2 (22) Kindermann,S (2560)-Jussupow,A (2615) Munich 1990}) 10... cxd4 11. cxd4 Ne7 12. Bd3 $146 (12. Bd2 b6 13. Nf3 h6 14. h4 Ba6 15. Bc3 Bxf1 16. Rxf1 Nd7 17. Kd2 a5 18. Kd3 Rhc8 19. Bd2 Rc4 20. c3 Rac8 21. Ne1 Nc6 22. Nc2 Ra4 23. f4 h5 24. Rb3 Na7 25. Ne3 b5 26. Ke2 Nb6 {Jakic,I (2246)-Haba,P (2461) Bibinje 2001 1/2-1/2 (88)}) 12... Nd7 {Black's piece can't move: c8} (12... b6 13. Ne2 $11) 13. Nf3 h6 {Consolidates g5} 14. h4 Nb6 15. Bd2 {Black has a cramped position} Bd7 16. Ba5 {White threatens to win material: Ba5xb6} (16. Rg1 g6 $14) 16... Nec8 (16... Nc4 $5 {is an interesting alternative} 17. Bxc4 dxc4 18. Rxb7 Bc6 $11) 17. h5 Bc6 {Black has a cramped position} 18. Nh4 (18. Bd2 Nc4 $14) 18... Nc4 19. Bxc4 (19. Bd2 $5 $16) 19... dxc4 $11 {Opposite coloured bishops appeared} 20. O-O Ne7 21. Bb4 (21. f3 b6 22. Bb4 Nd5 $11) 21... Nd5 $15 22. Bd6 (22. f3 $5 $15) 22... Nf4 $17 23. Rfe1 $2 (23. f3 $142 $5 Nxh5 24. g4 $17) 23... Nxh5 $19 24. g3 g5 {Black plans f4} 25. Ng2 f4 26. gxf4 $2 (26. Kh2 Kg6 $19) 26... gxf4 27. Kh2 (27. f3 Bxf3 28. Rf1 Bxg2 29. Kxg2 Rhg8+ 30. Kf3 Rg3+ 31. Kf2 $19) 27... Rhg8 28. Rg1 Rg4 (28... Rg4 29. f3 Bxf3 $19) 0-1

8 Nov 2017

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 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Qc7)

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 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Qc7)

This was played in the atadros's mini-tournament V, which was the first and so far the only high-stakes tournament I have taken part in. It has an increased cost to join, but also the points you can get from this mini-tournament are increased. I was on 9th place in the final standings with 5.5 points. My opponent, willy_13, was on 7th place and he gathered 6.5 points in 20 games. A player called desaparicidos (2033) won the tournament, he gathered 17.5 points. The first blunder of the game was seen on move 12, when my opponent went one O too far and castled on the queenside.

In order to take advantage of the blunder, I needed to play 13.Ba3 and I would have had a winning advantage. Blunders were seen from both sides for a couple of moves unfortunately, my first blunder being the reply 13.Qb1. My 13th move was not bad enough to tip the balance in my opponent's favor, but I lost all my advantage with that move. Willy_13 then played the horrible 13...g5 and I was given another chance to move my bishop to a3 and get the winning advantage again. I messed up my second chance as well with another queen move. This time I moved my queen to a2. Both times the result of my queen moves were the same, I lost all of my advantage, but I did not end up on the worse side of the board either. When I did play Ba3 finally on move 17, at that point it was a bad move. A few more mistakes were seen in the last part of the game, but neither side was able to keep the advantage and eventually draw was agreed upon after the move 24...Ng5.

Game number two. The game below was played on the third round of the French 2014 tournament at Chess.com. I was on fourth place in group 2 in the final standings, which was also the last place unfortunately. I gathered only half a point in six games. I faced rather tough players on all rounds, but on this round my luck ended. My opponent in this game, National Master Ejarov, won the group with one and a half a point difference to amir88 (2157), who finished second.

This game started to go a bit wrong for me already on move 14. I moved the bishop back to c1, and tried to get the bishop to a better diagonal. Ejarov replied by moving the rook to c8, which threatened the continuation 15...cxd4 16.cxd4 Qxc2, which is why I moved my rook to a2 to protect the pawn on c2. It was the starting point for the troubles that I could not recover from because my opponent played well enough to not let the position get even again. Maybe my opponent did not play the most accurate moves, but the advantage still stayed on the side of Ejarov. The position in which the game deciding mistake was played can be seen below.

In the game I moved my bishop to d2, thinking that I can somehow hold on and maybe get a draw, but Ejarov was able to show decisively why I was losing the game. When my opponent won a pawn and it seemed that I can't prevent the loss of more material, I resigned after 36...Rxc3+.

[Event "atadros's mini-tournament V"] [Site "http://gameknot.com/chess.pl?"] [Date "2016.03.18"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "willy_13"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "C18"] [WhiteElo "1778"] [BlackElo "1877"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "48"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 c5 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 Qc7 {C18 French: 3. Nc3 Bb4 Main line, 7.h4 and 7.Qg4} (6... Ne7 7. a4 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Advance Variation} (7. Nf3 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Positional Variation}) (7. Qg4 Qc7 8. Qxg7 Rg8 9. Qxh7 cxd4 10. Kd1 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Poisoned Pawn Variation, Paoli Variation})) 7. Bb2 f5 (7... Ne7 8. Bd3 (8. Nf3 Nbc6 9. Bd3 Bd7 10. O-O c4 11. Be2 f6 12. Re1 O-O-O 13. a4 Ng6 14. Ba3 fxe5 15. dxe5 Ngxe5 16. Nxe5 Nxe5 17. Qd4 Nc6 18. Qc5 b6 19. Qb5 Kb7 20. Qb2 Ka8 21. Rab1 h5 22. Qc1 Na5 {Civi,A (1582)-Korkmaz, T (1948) Antalya 2013 0-1 (45)}) 8... b6 9. Qg4 g6 10. Qf3 Ba6 11. Qf6 Rf8 12. Nf3 Bxd3 13. cxd3 Nec6 14. Ng5 h6 15. Nh7 Rg8 16. Qh4 Nd7 17. Qxh6 O-O-O 18. Qf4 f6 19. Nxf6 Ndxe5 20. dxe5 Nxe5 21. O-O Rgf8 22. Rfe1 {Reuss,A (2301) -Scheeff,V (2132) Schwaebisch Gmuend 2012 1-0 (34)}) 8. Nf3 $146 (8. Nh3 Ne7 9. Qh5+ Ng6 10. Nf4 Qf7 11. Nxg6 Qxg6 12. Qxg6+ hxg6 13. c4 cxd4 14. cxd5 exd5 15. Bxd4 Nc6 16. Bb5 Bd7 17. Bxc6 Bxc6 18. O-O-O b6 19. e6 Rh7 20. Rde1 Ke7 21. h3 Rc8 22. Re2 Bb5 {Ulusoy,N (1711)-Faruq,A Iasi 2012 1-0 (44)}) 8... Ne7 9. Be2 Nbc6 10. O-O Bd7 (10... b6 11. a4 $11) 11. a4 $14 Na5 {Black intends c4} 12. Nd2 O-O-O $2 (12... b6 13. Bh5+ Ng6 14. Ba3 $14) 13. Qb1 $4 {with this move White loses his initiative} (13. Ba3 Kb8 $18) 13... g5 $4 (13... c4 14. Ba3 Be8 15. Bd6 Rxd6 16. exd6 Qxd6 17. Qd1 $11) 14. Qa2 $4 {instead of simply winning the game} (14. Ba3 $142 {White had this great chance} Kb8 15. Bxc5 $18) 14... c4 $15 { Black wins space} 15. Qa3 Bc6 16. Qb4 h5 (16... b6 17. Nb1 $15) 17. Ba3 (17. Nf3 Rdg8 18. h4 gxh4 19. Kh1 $11 (19. Nxh4 $143 Ng6 20. Nxg6 Rxg6 $17)) 17... Ng6 $15 18. Nf3 {White threatens to win material: Nf3xg5} Nf4 {Black threatens to win material: Nf4xe2} (18... Nb3 19. cxb3 a5 20. Qc5 $15) 19. Bd1 $11 Rhg8 ( 19... g4 20. Nh4 Rdg8 21. Bc1 $11) 20. g3 (20. Bc1 $5 $14 {has some apparent merit}) 20... Nh3+ $11 21. Kg2 {White threatens to win material: Kg2xh3} g4 { Black threatens to win material: g4xf3} 22. Ng1 (22. Qc5 $142 $5 $11 {looks like a viable alternative}) 22... Ng5 $17 23. Ne2 (23. Bc1 $142 h4 24. Bxg5 Rxg5 25. Ne2 $17) 23... Nh3 (23... b6 $142 $17) 24. Ng1 $11 Ng5 1/2-1/2 [Event "French 2014 - Round 3"] [Site "Chess.com"] [Date "2016.01.06"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "Ejarov"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "C18"] [WhiteElo "1846"] [BlackElo "2343"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "rnbqkbnr/pppp1ppp/4p3/8/4P3/8/PPPP1PPP/RNBQKBNR w KQkq - 0 2"] [PlyCount "70"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 c5 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 Qc7 {C18 French: 3.Nc3 Bb4 Main line, 7.h4 and 7.Qg4} (6... Ne7 7. Qg4 (7. a4 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Advance Variation}) 7... Qc7 8. Qxg7 Rg8 9. Qxh7 cxd4 10. Kd1 { French Defense: Winawer Variation, Poisoned Pawn Variation, Paoli Variation} ( 10. Ne2 {French Defense: Winawer Variation, Poisoned Pawn Variation, Main Line} )) 7. Bb2 Ne7 8. Nf3 (8. Bd3 b6 9. Qg4 g6 10. Qf3 Ba6 11. Qf6 Rf8 12. Nf3 Bxd3 13. cxd3 Nec6 14. Ng5 h6 15. Nh7 Rg8 16. Qh4 Nd7 17. Qxh6 O-O-O 18. Qf4 f6 19. Nxf6 Ndxe5 20. dxe5 Nxe5 21. O-O Rgf8 22. Rfe1 Nxd3 {Reuss,A (2301)-Scheeff,V (2132) Schwaebisch Gmuend 2012 1-0 (34)}) 8... b6 9. Be2 Ba6 $146 (9... Ng6 10. Qd3 Ba6 11. Qe3 cxd4 12. Nxd4 Nxe5 13. Bxa6 Nxa6 14. f4 Nc4 15. Qc1 Nc5 16. O-O Ne4 17. f5 exf5 18. Rxf5 Nxb2 19. Qxb2 Nxc3 20. Re1+ Kd8 21. Nb5 Qc5+ 22. Kh1 Nxb5 23. Rd1 Nc3 24. Qb3 {Kali,R (1092)-Craciun,C (1192) Calimanesti 2013 0-1 (61)}) 10. O-O Bxe2 {Black forks: d1+f1} 11. Qxe2 Nd7 12. Nh4 Ng6 (12... Rc8 13. Qb5 $15) 13. Nxg6 $11 hxg6 14. Bc1 (14. c4 $5 dxc4 15. Qxc4 $11) 14... Rc8 15. Ra2 (15. Bd2 Nb8 $15) 15... cxd4 $17 16. cxd4 Qc4 17. Qxc4 Rxc4 (17... dxc4 $6 18. c3 $11) 18. Be3 O-O 19. Rc1 Nb8 (19... Rfc8 20. Kf1 $17) 20. c3 Rfc8 21. Bd2 Nc6 22. Rb1 f6 {Secures g5} 23. f4 Kf7 24. Kf2 Rh8 25. Rh1 Na5 26. a4 Nb3 27. Be1 Nc1 {Black threatens to win material: Nc1xa2} 28. Ra3 Nd3+ {Black forks: f4} 29. Kg3 (29. Kf3 $5 a5 30. exf6 gxf6 31. Rb3 Nxe1+ 32. Rxe1 Rxh2 33. Kg3 $15) 29... g5 $17 (29... Nxe1 $6 30. Rxe1 Rh5 31. exf6 Kxf6 32. Rf1 $11) 30. Bd2 (30. fxg5 $5 fxe5 31. Bd2 $17) 30... gxf4+ $19 31. Bxf4 fxe5 32. Bxe5 Rhc8 33. Rf1+ Kg6 34. Rf3 (34. Bd6 Rxc3 35. Rxc3 Rxc3 $19) 34... Ne1 35. Rf1 ( 35. Rf2 Rxc3+ 36. Rxc3 Rxc3+ 37. Kh4 $19) 35... Rxc3+ 36. Rxc3 Rxc3+ (36... Rxc3+ 37. Kg4 Nd3 $19) 0-1

7 Nov 2017

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 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Qc7 7.Qg4 f5)

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 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Qc7 7.Qg4 f5)

This one was played in the third round of a rapid chess tournament that was held at the FIDE Online Arena on March 28th 2015. This third game brought me my second win in the tournament and as it was a consecutive win, I was starting to do well after the bad start. Up to the move 33...Bf5 nothing terrible happened for either player. My 34th move, Bh5, was bad because bishop does not help in the attack in any way, it is actually just in the way at h5 and in the meantime my opponent could have created some play on the queenside. Unfortunately for my opponent, chamo47 was not able to find the correct plan of a5, followed by b4, which would have opened lines for my opponent and weakened the pawn on d4.

Chamo47 played 34...Qb8 and instead of being lost, I was fighting for a draw once again. My next blunder saw the light of day when I played 45.Kg3 and I was in a lost position once again. The game went on with the moves 45...Rc7 46.Bd2 and then my opponent took a step into the wrong direction by placing his or hers knight to a4. The much better square for the knight was c4 and chamo47 would have stayed on the path of victory. I should be in trouble in the game continuation as well, but draw was a lot more likely after 46...Na4 than it would have been after 36...Nc4.

I was not able to get fully back into the game, but when I played 49.Kf2, I went from a slightly worse position to being in a lost position.

While my opponent did not play the most accurate moves during the remainder of the game, chamo47 should have won the game, had the time not decided the game in my favor.

[Event "Tournament 28376646"] [Site "online arena"] [Date "2015.03.28"] [Round "3"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "chamo47"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C18"] [WhiteElo "1727"] [BlackElo "1679"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "105"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 c5 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 Qc7 {French Defense: Winawer Variation. Classical Variation} (6... Ne7 7. Nf3 {French Defense: Winawer Variation. Positional Variation} (7. Qg4 Qc7 8. Qxg7 Rg8 9. Qxh7 cxd4 10. Kd1 {French Defense: Winawer Variation. Poisoned Pawn Variation Paoli Variation} (10. Ne2 {French Defense: Winawer Variation. Poisoned Pawn Variation Main Line}))) 7. Qg4 f5 {C18 French: 3.Nc3 Bb4 Main line, 7.h4 and 7. Qg4} 8. Qd1 (8. Qh3 Ne7 9. Kd1 O-O 10. Nf3 b6 11. Rg1 Qd7 12. g4 Ba6 13. Bxa6 Nxa6 14. gxf5 Nxf5 15. Nh4 cxd4 16. cxd4 Qa4 17. Nxf5 Rxf5 18. Qg4 g6 19. Rb1 Rc8 20. Rb3 Qc4 21. Rb2 Nc7 22. Rb4 Qc6 {Zavadsky, P (2330)-Priehoda,V (2400) Hlohovec 1995 0-1 (59)}) 8... Nc6 (8... Ne7 9. Nf3 O-O 10. Be2 b6 11. a4 Nbc6 12. O-O cxd4 13. cxd4 Bb7 14. Ba3 h6 15. c4 Rfd8 16. c5 Rac8 17. Qd3 Na5 18. Nd2 Ng6 19. g3 bxc5 20. Bxc5 Nxe5 21. Qe3 Nf7 22. Bxa7 Ng5 23. Rfb1 { Babrauskas,D (2001)-Pidluznij,G (1352) Kaunas 2016 1-0 (45)}) 9. Nf3 Nge7 10. Bd2 $146 (10. Be2 Bd7 11. O-O O-O-O 12. a4 cxd4 13. cxd4 Kb8 14. Ba3 Nc8 15. Ng5 h6 16. Nf7 g5 17. c4 dxc4 18. Nxh8 Rxh8 19. Bxc4 h5 20. Rc1 h4 21. d5 exd5 22. Bxd5 Rh6 23. Re1 {1-0 (23) Illescas Cordoba, M (2595)-Plo Palacian,S (1849) ajedrez.educaterra.com 2003}) (10. Be2 h6 $11) 10... Bd7 11. Be2 O-O 12. O-O a6 {Prevents intrusion on b5} (12... Be8 13. a4 $11) 13. Bg5 (13. Re1 b5 $11) 13... cxd4 14. cxd4 Rac8 15. g3 h6 16. Be3 Na5 17. Bd3 Nc4 18. Bc1 Ba4 19. Ra2 Be8 (19... Qb6 20. Bd2 $15) 20. Nd2 $11 Nxd2 21. Bxd2 Nc6 {The idea is Ne7-c6-a5-c4} 22. c3 {Controls b4+d4} Na5 23. Qe2 Nc4 {Praise the knight!} 24. Bc1 b5 (24... Qa5 25. Qe1 $11) 25. f4 $11 Qa5 {The isolated pawn on a3 becomes a target. Black threatens to win material: Qa5xc3} 26. Qe1 Bh5 27. Bc2 Be8 28. Bd1 Rc7 29. Rg2 Bg6 (29... Nxa3 $2 {doesn't lead to the expected results} 30. Ra2 b4 31. cxb4 $18) 30. g4 fxg4 31. Bxg4 Qb6 32. Qh4 Kh7 33. Rg3 Bf5 34. Bh5 $2 (34. Bxf5+ Rxf5 35. Kh1 Qc6 $11) 34... Qb8 (34... a5 $142 {would have given Black a clear advantage} 35. Rgf3 b4 36. axb4 axb4 37. cxb4 g6 $19) 35. Bg4 $15 Bxg4 (35... Qe8 36. Kh1 $15) 36. Qxg4 $11 Qe8 37. Rf2 (37. f5 exf5 38. Rxf5 Kh8 $11) 37... Rf5 38. Rfg2 Qf7 39. h4 Re7 (39... Qe7 40. Kh2 $15) 40. Qd1 Qh5 41. Qxh5 Rxh5 42. Rg4 Rf7 43. Ra2 (43. Rg6 Rxh4 44. Rxe6 Rh3 $11) 43... Rhf5 (43... g6 44. Kf2 $15) 44. Kg2 (44. Rag2 $5 $11 {should be examined more closely}) 44... Nb6 45. Kg3 $2 (45. Kf1 $142 $15 {would keep White in the game}) 45... Rc7 46. Bd2 (46. Kh2 Rxc3 47. Rag2 $19) 46... Na4 $4 {hands over the advantage to the opponent} (46... Nc4 $142 {makes it even easier for Black} 47. Kh3 Nxd2 48. Rxd2 Rxc3+ 49. Rg3 Rc1 $19) 47. Rc2 (47. Kg2 Rc4 (47... Nxc3 $6 48. Rc2 b4 49. axb4 $11) 48. Rg3 Nb6 $15) 47... Rf8 (47... h5 $5 48. Rg5 Rxg5+ 49. fxg5 Nb6 $17) 48. Kf3 Rfc8 (48... h5 $142 49. Rg2 Nb6 $17) 49. Kf2 $2 (49. h5 $5 $15 ) 49... Nxc3 (49... a5 50. c4 Rxc4 51. Rxc4 Rxc4 52. Bxa5 Rxd4 53. h5 $19) 50. Bxc3 $17 Rxc3 51. Rxc3 Rxc3 52. Rg3 $4 {causes even greater problems} (52. h5 $142 Rd3 53. Rg6 Rxd4 54. Ke3 Re4+ 55. Kf3 $17) 52... Rxg3 53. Kxg3 (53. Kxg3 Kg6 54. Kf2 Kf5 55. Kf3 h5 56. Kg2 Kxf4 57. Kf2 a5 58. Ke2 g5 59. hxg5 Kxg5 60. Ke3 h4 61. Ke2 h3 62. Kf3 b4 63. axb4 axb4 64. Ke2 h2 65. Kd1 h1=Q+ 66. Kc2 Qf3 67. Kb2 b3 68. Ka3 Qc3 69. Ka4 b2 70. Kb5 b1=Q+ 71. Ka4 Qca1#) 1-0

6 Nov 2017

B90 Sicilian Najdorf: Unusual White 6th moves, 6.Be3 Ng4 and 6.Be3 e5 (1.e4 c5 Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e5 7.Nb3 Be7 8.Be3 Be6 9.f3 O-O 10.Qd2 Qc7 11.O-O-O Nbd7)

B90 Sicilian Najdorf: Unusual White 6th moves, 6.Be3 Ng4 and 6.Be3 e5 (1.e4 c5 Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e5 7.Nb3 Be7 8.Be3 Be6 9.f3 O-O 10.Qd2 Qc7 11.O-O-O Nbd7)

My adventures in the variations of the Sicilian continue with this post, but the game I will share tomorrow will feature a variation of the French. This game was played in the atadros's mini-tournament V. The mini-tournament was played between December 10th, 2015 and October 3rd, 2016 at GameKnot. 11 players took part in it and I was 9th in the final standings, having only managed to get 2 wins and 7 draws out of 20 games. My opponent in the game below, towa, was 3rd in the final standings with 15.5 points.

My 23rd move, Bd3, was the first really horrible move that was seen in the game. Giving up the bishop pair is not a good decision in that position, the engine even thinks it to be lost for me after 23.Bd3 on depth 30. My move allowed my opponent not only get one of my bishops, but also it freed the square e5, so that when I later on played g6, towa was able to place his or hers bishop to f6 where become a strong piece eyeing all the way to b2. The game continued 23...Nxd3 24.Rxd3 a4 25.g6 Bf6 and towa should be on the path to victory. I have to note though that 24...a4 was a bit sloppy and I might have had a better chance to hold on for a draw than if towa had played 24...f6. In the game I should have then played maybe 25.Kb1, but even then I would have been in some serious trouble.

The move 25.g6 was appealing to me since it seems to be a good way to open lines in front of the enemy king, but unfortunately it also improves the scope of the dark-squared bishop that my opponent has. It was something I could not afford and it was my opponent that had much better placed pieces and more ready to attack than I was. Up to the move 31.Qxc3 I was completely lost, but then towa decided to capture the queen with the rook and because of that mistake my opponent lost some of the advantage and was not winning anymore. I found the strongest reply 32.Kb1 and I was only clearly worse at the time.

Slowly but surely my opponent let the advantage slip away completely and after towa's 37th move f3, the position was roughly equal again. I even had an extra pawn, but the pawn on f2 was a very strong distraction for me. I tried my best to blockade the pawn while at the same time advance with my own pawn at the queenside. Up to the move 42...Ke4 I was able to prevent my opponent from doing anything dangerous, but then I collapsed and played 43.Bb6. The reason why I placed my bishop to b6 was that I thought that I can't leave it to the square where it was because of the move 43...Rxe3 and I would lose my knight and a bishop for the rook and I also thought that I had to keep my bishop on the a7-g1 diagonal. The latter part was probably true in order to prevent Rg1, but I was wrong to think that I can't leave my bishop to e3.

After my terrible bishop move I had no counterplay and the remainder of the game could have gone easily in towa's favor, had my opponent just played 43...Nc5, which would have blocked the bishop and made sure that I lose some material. An example line is shown in the game notation on how the game could have continued after 43...Nc5. In the game towa played 43...Kxd5, which allowed me to get a drawish position on the board. I played 44.a4, which is good enough, but also 44.Ne3+ would have given me a draw with precise play. To 44.a4 towa played the obvious try 44...Kc4, which prevents the advance of the pawns for the time being. I then made two catastrophic moves in a row 45.Be3 and 46.b6. Both moves are so bad that they could have lost me the game, but because towa replied the first move with d5, I survived the first, but not the second blunder. Towa played 46...d4 and the game was easy to win for my opponent at that point. I prolonged the game a few more moves, but when I faced a forced mate, I resigned after 51...Kb3.

[Event "atadros's mini-tournament V"] [Site "http://gameknot.com/chess.pl?"] [Date "2016.10.03"] [Round "?"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "towa"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B90"] [WhiteElo "1789"] [BlackElo "1935"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "102"] [EventDate "2016.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Be2 {Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation. Opocensky Variation} e5 7. Nb3 Be7 8. Be3 (8. O-O Be6 { Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation, Opocensky Variation, Modern Line} (8... O-O {Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation, Opocensky Variation, Traditional Line })) 8... Be6 9. f3 O-O 10. Qd2 Qc7 11. O-O-O Nbd7 {B90 Sicilian Najdorf: Unusual White 6th moves, 6.Be3 Ng4 and 6.Be3 e5} 12. g4 Nb6 13. g5 Nfd7 14. f4 exf4 15. Bxf4 Ne5 16. h4 Rac8 $146 (16... Nbc4 17. Qd4 Rac8 18. Rh2 b5 19. a3 Nxa3 20. bxa3 Qxc3 21. Qxc3 Rxc3 22. Kb2 Rfc8 23. Nd4 R3c7 24. a4 bxa4 25. Bxa6 Rb8+ 26. Ka1 Rc3 27. Bb5 Nf3 28. Kb2 Rc5 29. Nxf3 Rbxb5+ 30. Ka1 Rc3 31. Rd3 { Assmann,R (1950)-Gelzenleichter,S (2160) Wingst 2003 0-1 (42)}) 17. h5 { White has an active position} Nbc4 {Black threatens to win material: Nc4xd2} 18. Qe1 {White has a very active position} b5 {White has an active position} 19. Na1 (19. Bxc4 Qxc4 20. Kb1 a5 $11) 19... Rfe8 (19... f5 20. Nd5 Bxd5 21. exd5 $17) 20. Qg3 b4 (20... Nb6 21. Rd4 $11) 21. Nd5 $11 Bxd5 22. exd5 a5 23. Bd3 $4 {throwing away the advantage} (23. Kb1 $142 $11 {and White can hope to survive}) 23... Nxd3+ $19 24. Rxd3 a4 25. g6 $4 {strolling merrily down the path to disaster} (25. Kb1 $142 $17) 25... Bf6 $19 26. gxh7+ (26. Kb1 {doesn't get the cat off the tree} Bxb2 27. Bc1 Be5 $19) 26... Kxh7 (26... Kh8 $142 { keeps an even firmer grip} 27. Kb1 Bxb2 $19) 27. c3 (27. Qf3 {a fruitless try to alter the course of the game} Bxb2+ 28. Kb1 Qb7 $19) 27... a3 (27... Qb7 28. Rh2 bxc3 29. Rxc3 Qxd5 30. Qd3+ Qxd3 31. Rxd3 Re1+ 32. Kc2 Nxb2+ 33. Kd2 Rd1+ 34. Ke2 Rxd3 $19) 28. b3 Nb2 29. Re3 (29. Kb1 {doesn't change anything anymore} Bxc3 30. Rxc3 Qxc3 31. Qxc3 Rxc3 $19) 29... Rxe3 (29... Bxc3 30. Rxe8 Be1+ 31. Kb1 Bxg3 32. Rc1 Qxc1+ 33. Bxc1 Rxe8 34. Nc2 Nd3 35. h6 gxh6 36. Be3 Re4 37. Bd2 Bf4 38. Nxa3 bxa3 39. Kc2 Re2 40. b4 Rxd2+ 41. Kb3 Rf2 42. Kc3 Rxa2 43. Kxd3 Rd2+ 44. Kc4 a2 45. Kb5 a1=Q 46. Kc6 Rc2+ 47. Kb5 Qa8 48. Kb6 Qb8+ 49. Ka5 Ra2#) 30. Qxe3 Qxc3+ 31. Qxc3 Rxc3+ (31... Nd3+ 32. Kb1 Bxc3 (32... Rxc3 $6 33. Bxd6 Nf2 34. Re1 $17) (32... bxc3 $6 33. Bxd6 Rd8 34. Bxa3 $15) 33. Bxd6 Nf2 $19) 32. Kb1 $17 Be5 33. Bd2 Rg3 34. Bxb4 f5 35. Nc2 (35. Bxa3 Nd3 36. Rf1 f4 $17) 35... Nd3 $15 36. Bxa3 f4 37. Bc1 f3 (37... g5 $5 38. hxg6+ Kxg6 $17) 38. Rf1 $11 f2 39. Be3 g5 40. hxg6+ Kxg6 ({Worse is} 40... Rxg6 41. a4 Rg3 42. Ka2 $16) 41. b4 Kf5 42. b5 Ke4 {Black threatens to win material: Ke4xd5} 43. Bb6 $4 {overlooking an easy win} (43. b6 Rg8 (43... Rxe3 $2 {looks tantalising, but} 44. Nxe3 Bd4 45. b7 $18) 44. a4 Kxd5 45. Bxf2 Nxf2 46. Rxf2 Kc6 $11) 43... Kxd5 (43... Nc5 $142 {and Black wins} 44. Rxf2 Rg1+ 45. Ne1 Rxe1+ 46. Kc2 Ra1 $19) 44. a4 Kc4 45. Be3 $4 (45. Bxf2 Nxf2 46. Rxf2 Kb3 $11) 45... d5 (45... Nb4 $142 {and Black can already relax} 46. Rxf2 Rg1+ 47. Bc1 Nd5 $19) 46. b6 $4 { Pushes the passed pawn} (46. Bxf2 $142 {would hold out} Nxf2 47. Rxf2 $11) 46... d4 $19 47. Bxf2 Rf3 48. Rg1 (48. Ne1 Rxf2 49. Rxf2 Nxf2 50. a5 $19) 48... Nxf2 49. Rg8 (49. Rc1 {doesn't improve anything} Ne4 50. Ne1+ Nc3+ 51. Kb2 Re3 52. Ng2 Re4 53. Re1 Rg4 54. Rg1 Ne2 55. b7 Nxg1 56. Ne1 d3+ 57. Ka3 d2 58. b8=R Bxb8 59. Nc2 Rg3+ 60. Ka2 d1=Q 61. Ne3+ Rxe3 62. a5 Qc2+ 63. Ka1 Be5#) 49... Ne4 50. Ra8 (50. Rc8+ {hardly improves anything} Nc5 51. Kc1 Rf1+ 52. Ne1 Rxe1+ 53. Kd2 Rb1 54. a5 Rb2+ 55. Ke1 d3 56. b7 Rxb7 57. Rf8 Rb1+ 58. Kf2 d2 59. Rd8 Nd3+ 60. Kg2 d1=Q 61. Rc8+ Kb3 62. Rb8+ Bxb8 63. Kh3 Qh5+ 64. Kg2 Qh1#) 50... d3 51. Na3+ (51. Rf8 {cannot undo what has already been done} Rxf8 52. Ne3+ Kb3 53. Kc1 Bf4 54. Kd1 Bxe3 55. Ke1 Bd2+ 56. Kd1 Rf1#) 51... Kb3 (51... Kb3 52. Rf8 Bb2 53. a5 Nd2#) 0-1

3 Nov 2017

B92 Sicilian Najdorf: 6.Be2 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e5 7.Nb3 Be7 8.Be3 Be6 9.O-O Nbd7 10.f4 exf4)

B92 Sicilian Najdorf: 6.Be2 (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e5 7.Nb3 Be7 8.Be3 Be6 9.O-O Nbd7 10.f4 exf4)

This one was played on the first round of the 2015 October Grand Split Three Seven I 1800+ tournament. My opponent in the game below is the highest rated player of the group and also the highest rated player on the site. Not surprisingly cenerentola won group 1 and is currently fighting for the win of the tournament. Even though there might not seem much sense on playing games against players whose level of play differs from you by over 600 points, I still enjoy the challenge when I am the lower rated player. In worst case I might lose a rating point or two, but I may also learn some valuable lessons for the future which is obviously a very good thing.

One of those lessons might be that I should not play moves like 13.Bxe5 and if I ever reach this position again, I should play either 13.Rad1 or 13.Kh1. My mistake was not severe enough for me to lose the game, but I did end up being slightly worse because of it. I did manage to be a pawn up in the position after my 14th move, but my opponent got the initiative, which was more important than the material. It did not take much for cenerentola to take advantage of my mistakes like the one I mentioned and the one I played on move 18.

My 18th move might have actually been the losing move. I might have kept the game going on longer in a position where I am only slightly worse, had I played 18.Nc5, but that position would have been difficult for me to play in any case. I did continue my fruitless efforts to hold on up to the move 32...Re3.

[Event "Grand Split Three Seven"] [Site "http://www.redhotpawn.com"] [Date "2015.12.21"] [Round "1"] [White "Vierjoki, Timo"] [Black "cenerentola"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B92"] [WhiteElo "1900"] [BlackElo "2553"] [Annotator "Stockfish 8 64 POPCNT (30s), TV"] [PlyCount "64"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Be2 {Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation, Opocensky Variation} e5 7. Nb3 Be7 8. Be3 (8. O-O Be6 { Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation, Opocensky Variation, Modern Line} (8... O-O {Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation, Opocensky Variation, Traditional Line })) 8... Be6 9. O-O Nbd7 10. f4 exf4 {B92 Sicilian Najdorf: 6.Be2} 11. Bxf4 { Attacks the isolani on d6} Ne5 12. Qd4 (12. h3 O-O 13. Qe1 Rc8 14. Rd1 Qc7 15. Qg3 Rfd8 16. Bh6 Ng6 17. Bg5 b5 18. Bf3 b4 19. Nd5 Bxd5 20. exd5 Qxc2 21. Rd2 Qc7 22. h4 Ne8 23. h5 Bxg5 24. Qxg5 Ne5 25. Be4 h6 26. Qg3 Qa7+ {Pazgan, J-Szuminski,M (2020) Poland 2012 0-1 (40)}) 12... O-O 13. Bxe5 $146 (13. Rad1 Qc7 14. Nd5 Bxd5 15. exd5 Qxc2 16. Bd3 Nxd3 17. Rxd3 Qc8 18. Rg3 Nh5 19. Bh6 g6 20. Bxf8 Bxf8 21. Rgf3 Bg7 22. Qf2 f6 23. Re3 f5 24. Re7 Nf6 25. Rc1 Qd8 26. Rcc7 Ne8 27. Rcd7 Qc8 {Slepankova,R (1981)-Hrdlicka,V (1808) Brno 2016 1-0}) ( 13. Rad1 Rc8 $11) 13... dxe5 $15 14. Qxe5 Bd6 15. Qg5 h6 {Black threatens to win material: h6xg5} 16. Qe3 Qc7 17. Kh1 Be5 ({Weaker is} 17... Bxh2 18. Rxf6 gxf6 19. g3 Qxg3 20. Qxg3+ Bxg3 21. Rg1 $14) 18. Bf3 (18. Rad1 $142 $5 $15 { is a viable option}) 18... Bxh2 $17 19. Rad1 Rfe8 20. Nd4 Bd7 21. Qd3 (21. Rd3 $5 Be5 $17) 21... Be5 $19 22. Nd5 $4 {but even a better move would not have saved the game} (22. Qe3 $19) 22... Nxd5 23. exd5 Qd8 24. Nf5 Qg5 25. Be4 g6 26. Qh3 Bg7 ({Less advisable is} 26... Bxf5 27. Bxf5 gxf5 28. Rxf5 $19) 27. Bd3 (27. Qf3 {doesn't get the bull off the ice} gxf5 28. Bxf5 Bxf5 29. Qxf5 Qxf5 30. Rxf5 Re2 $19) 27... Re5 28. c4 (28. Nxh6+ {does not help much} Qxh6 29. Qxh6 Bxh6 $19) 28... Rae8 29. Kg1 (29. Nxh6+ Bxh6 30. Qxd7 $19) 29... Bxf5 30. Bxf5 Rxf5 31. Rxf5 gxf5 32. b3 Re3 (32... Re3 33. Kf2 Rxh3 34. gxh3 Bc3 35. d6 Qf4+ 36. Kg2 Qe4+ 37. Kg1 Qe3+ 38. Kf1 Qf3+ 39. Kg1 Qxd1+ 40. Kg2 Qe2+ 41. Kg1 Bd4+ 42. Kh1 Qf1+ 43. Kh2 Be5#) 0-1