Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Same as every year this time I'm going to talk about 2009 and give my "Game of 2008" and "Worst Game of 2008"

I didn't play very much rated chess this year, but when I did play it was of high quality (for me). I would like to play some more this year. In 2009, I'm going to talk K into playing some more and bringing back the King's Gambit or the Scotch Gambit. Players at my level can't defend so why not make them?

Game of the Year

I went over my games this morning and I had some fun games in 2008. My favourite though, for strength of opponent was the Panov v. MS in the Active Tournament in Kitchener, despite the error on move 31.

C - MS
B13 - Panov
Active Kitchener, ON (3), 06.09.2008

1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.c4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Nf3 Bg4 7.Be3 e6 8.cxd5 exd5 9.Be2 Bd6 10.0-0 0-0 11.a3 a6 12.h3 Bh5 13.Rc1 Rc8 14.Na4 Re8 15.Nc5 Bxc5 16.dxc5 Ne4 17.Re1 Ng3 18.Bxa6 bxa6 19.fxg3 d4 20.Bf4 Rxe1+ 21.Qxe1 Bxf3 22.gxf3 Qd5 23.Qe4 Qxe4 24.fxe4 f6 25.Kf2 Kf7 26.b4 Ne5 27.Bxe5 fxe5 28.Ke2 Ke6 29.Kd3 Rf8 30.Ke2 g6 31.Rf1 Rb8 32.Kd3 a5 33.Kc4 axb4 34.axb4 Rd8 35.b5 d3 36.b6 d2 37.Rd1 Rd4+ 38.Kb5 Kd7 39.c6+ Kc8 40.Kc5 Kb8 41.Rf1 42.Rf8+ Rd8 43.b7+ Kb8 44.Rxd8+

"The MS game showed mature play on your part considering it was an active. Nicely played endgame." (HJ) 1-0

The worst game of the year was probably my first loss v. K in our match. He played quite well, but I played plan and he manhandled me...although the same could be said of the last game of the match where he transposed a c3-sicilian into a French Advance and I fell apart

C - K
D36 - QGD : Exchange
Match Owen Sound, ON (1), 03.05.2008

1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Bg5 c6 6.Qc2 Be7 7.e3 g6 8.Bd3 0-0 9.Nge2 Nh5 10.Bxe7 Qxe7 11.Ng3 Nxg3 12.hxg3 Bg4 13.Ne2 Nd7 14.f3 Qxe3 15.fxg4 Rfe8 16.Qd2 Qxg3+ 17.Kd1 Qxg4 18.Kc2 Nf6 19.Raf1 Ne4 20.Qh6 Ng5 21.Kc3 c5 22.Rf4 cxd4+ 23.Rxd4 Rac8+ 24.Kd2 Rxe2+ 25.Bxe2 Qxd4+ 26.Ke1 Rc1+ 0-1

Sunday, September 07, 2008

KW Active 2008

I played 4 round of the Kitchener Active yesterday and score 2/4. leave any comments please! (too many Caros) i am glad i got another Panov after completely mishandling the position in round one. the guy in the first round was rated about 100 points lower than me, the second guy was around the same, the last two were experts in "normal" chess, but only about 300-400 points higher than me in active

C - SS
Active Kitchener, ON (1), 06.09.2008
B13 - Caro-Kann : Panov Variation

This is the tournament I've played in the most over the years. It's a one day active in a city about an hour and a half from where I live. My opponent was a 13 year old kid. 1.e4 [I think if I could do it all over again I would've played 1.g3 and tried to mix it up a bit] 1...c6 What 13 year old kid plays the Caro-Kann? Come on! 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.c4 Nf6 5.Nc3 dxc4!? Generally speaking Black should wait until I've used a tempo developing my light-square bishop before doing this. 6.Bxc4 e6 7.Nf3 Be7 Of course playing it this way like a QGD and sadding me with the IQP isn't terrible either. [I generally develop my bishop here 7...Bb4 ;
or 7...Bd6 ] 8.0-0 0-0 9.Be3 [If I would've thought for a second I would've played something like 9.Qe2 allowing me to play 9...-- 10.Rd1 -- 11.Be3 or somewhere else 11...-- 12.Rac1 and be able to just play a "normal" IQP position. My mind was blank and watch what I decided on instead] 9...Nbd7 10.Qc2? Start of my bad plans. Not sure why I put my queen on the only open file. [10.Qe2 was playable again, with ideas similar to above] 10...Nb6 11.Bd3 h6 12.Rad1 Wrong rook [12.Rfd1 -- 13.Rac1 and then move my queen should've been my plan] 12...Nbd5 13.h3? [13.Nxd5;
or if i wanted to move a pawn 13.a3 ] 13...Nb4! Nice move 14.Qe2 Nxd3 15.Rxd3? [again 15.Qxd3 is better. unless i was trying to get the other rook to the c-file. my plans were muddled and i didn't see much of what he was doing] 15...b6 16.Rd2 [Threatening 16.-- Ba6] 16...Bb7 17.Rfd1 Okay great! I've got a setup now (for better or worse), doubled rooks on the d-file, open up the file come up the middle it's gonna be great. 17...Rc8 18.a3? [admitting my mistake with 18.Rc1 was better] 18...Nd5 [18...Bxa3 was simple enough and then I have to start calculating lines like 19.Ra1 (19.bxa3 Rxc3) 19. ...Bxb2 20.Rxb2 Rxc3 21.Rxa7 and I'm down material. I saw 18. ...Bxa3 during the game right after I moved it and I realized I had to hunker down and dig my heels in.] 19.Nxd5 Qxd5 Now I'm in big trouble because of my toing and froing. He has opened up the c-file and has complete control. In addition, I'm stuck with my stupid knight not able to move against his two bishops because of mate on g2. I tried to hunker down 20.Qf1 Rfd8 21.Rc1 Bf6 22.Rdc2 [Maybe just 22.Rxc8 was better] 22...Rxc2 23.Rxc2 Rc8? giving away most of his advantage [23...Qf5 and pressuring my d-pawn (and rook) was better] 24.Rxc8+ Bxc8 25.b4 Trying to stake out some space [25.Qc1 was better 25...Bb7 26.Qc7 and get on with it.] 25...Bb7 26.Qc1 Qc6? Again trading off pieces helps me 27.Qxc6 Bxc6 28.Ne5 Bxe5? Now it's tough for him because he gets rid of my IQP and makes it opposite coloured bishops. We were in some time pressure here, so let's see if Fritz finds some flaws in my endgame "technique" [28...Bd5 was a better move] 29.dxe5 Kf8 30.f4 Be4 31.Kf2 Trying to get the active king. My plan was to try and win on the kingside because my bishop could take care of my part of the queenside 31...Ke7 32.g4 Kd7 33.Kg3 Bg6 34.h4 h5! This was a good move by him. Taking care of everything 35.gxh5 [I could've played 35.a4 here because his bishop was on the other side but I think it's still a draw] 35...Bxh5 36.Kf2 Kc6 37.Bc1 b5 38.Ke3 Kd5 39.Bb2 g6 40.Bc1 Bg4 41.Bb2= I kept my composure and defended a tough position, but didn't get much play at all as White. ½-½

JD - C
Active Kitchener, ON (2), 06.09.2008
A85 - Dutch Defense

I'm a control freak in chess...I want to impose my will on the position. After my opponent took it to me (when I was White) last game, I decided I was going to play a little more aggressively this round. 1.c4 f5 I was going to play the King's Indian against 1.d4 this tournament, but the Dutch is okay against 1.c4 because not only does it takes up space, but also White can't play a lot of the gambit lines having moved his c-pawn already. 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 Not as strong without White playing g3 4.Bf4 d6 5.Nf3 Bg7 6.Bg3 [6.e3 first was probably better. Although he did suck me in] 6...Nh5 [Fritz likes 6...Ne4 better. My idea was that I thought that either he had to move his h-pawn or else I would play ...f4 and win material. I know he wanted me to trade off his bishop and open the h-file, but with him playing h3 (or h4) that wasn't a possibility. Of course I missed that 7.e3 stopped ...f4. I got a little nervous that I was completely chess blind. Also my idea of not losing tempos by jumping my knight all around have gone out the window 7.e3 c5] 7.e3 [7.Bh4 h6 8.e3 g5 9.Nd2 Nf6 10.Bg3 is okay for White. I'm not going to castle into that mess am I?] 7...Nxg3 8.hxg3 e5 [8...Nc6 first was likely better. 9.Qb3 e5 10.0-0-0 e4 11.Nd2 but he still had good pressure] 9.Be2 [9.dxe5 dxe5 10.Qxd8+ Kxd8 was okay in my books. If i don't kingside castle, he has no attack.] 9...e4 [9...Nc6 10.d5 Ne7] 10.Nd2 Nd7 [I either had to fight back on the kingside 10...h5 ;
10...c5 or the center. I should've been trying to get him to push his d-pawn to activate my dark-square bishop] 11.g4 Nf6 12.gxf5 Bxf5 [I know that "every Russian schoolboy knows that you capture back with the g-pawn" but the holes were getting bigger in my position 12...gxf5 ] 13.Qc2 [I thought he was just going to play 13.g4 and run over me] 13...Qd7 wanted to stop g4. I had already mentally gambitted the e-pawn. 14.Ndxe4 Nxe4 15.Nxe4 0-0 [Fritz liked 15...0-0-0 but without trying to work on the f-pawn, I was just a pawn down] 16.Bd3 Rae8 17.Ng5 Bxd3 18.Qxd3 Qg4 Now it starts getting a little messy 19.Nxh7 Qxg2 [19...Rf5! was better, threatening to pick off the knight] 20.0-0-0 Rxf2 21.Rdg1 Qe4 This is all I had. I knew with the "two hogs on the seventh" I should be able to draw 22.Qxe4 Rxe4 23.Rxg6 [The text gives a draw but 23.Re1? Rg2 and I'm better. His pieces are overloaded and his knight is the worst piece on the board. Was that pawn worth it?] 23...Rxe3 24.Ng5 [I was worried about him trying 24.Rhg1 Kxh7 (24...Ree2 25.Rxg7+ Kh8 26.Nf6 Rc2+=) 25.Rxg7+ Kh6 26.Rxc7 and he's better] 24...Ree2 25.Ne6 Rc2+ 26.Kd1 Rcd2+ [26...Rfd2+ 27.Ke1 Fritz liked 27...Kf7 28.Rxg7+ Kxe6 29.b3 Rxa2 but that's a lot to hope for after defending for the better part of the hour...better part of two hours counting last game] 27.Ke1 Rde2+ 28.Kd1 Rd2+ 29.Ke1 Rde2+= ½-½

C - MS
Active Kitchener, ON (3), 06.09.2008
B13 - Caro-Kann : Panov Variation

Okay so I've played basically terribly the first two games and still ended up with two hard fought draws. I knew I could play better. I got paired with the second highest rated guy in the tournament. 1.e4 c6 On the inside I was happy about this. I had thought about everything I had done wrong in the first round and decided to play the IQP by the book, rooks on the c- and d-file, play to push the pawn, etc. 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.c4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6 Personally I hate this line. I always feel like he's gonna pick off the d-pawn. 6.Nf3 [Maybe I should avoid the pin and just play 6.Bg5 but even still 6...dxc4 7.Bxc4 (7.d5 Ne5 8.Qd4 Nd3+ 9.Bxd3 cxd3 10.Qxd3 is okay too. It's got good pedigree too, going all the way back to Botwinnik-Flohr match 1933) 7...Nxd4 8.Nf3 Nxf3+ 9.Qxf3 Qc7 10.Bb5+ Bd7 11.0-0 is not an easy line to find if you've never seen it. Maybe i will look at 6.Bg5 further] 6...Bg4 7.Be3 e6 8.cxd5?! Taking the starch out of the position [8.h3 or;
8.Be2] 8...exd5? [If he played 8...Nxd5 he would have been better] 9.Be2 [Could've tried 9.h3 here too] 9...Bd6 [9...Qb6 would have been pretty annoying] 10.0-0 0-0 11.a3 Trying to start up a minority attack 11...a6 12.h3 Bh5 13.Rc1 Rc8 14.Na4 My idea is to trade off the dark-squared bishop for my knight, give him the IQP and give me a queenside majority 14...Re8 15.Nc5 Bxc5? [A positional error. Moving the queen was better, although after 15...Qb6 16.b4 i would be happy with my position] 16.dxc5 Ne4 17.Re1 [Played becuase of variations like 17.-- d4 18.Nxd4 Bxe2 19.Qxe2 (Of course 19.Nxe2 is playable, but just the idea of the queen being overloaded because of the piece on e2 ) 19...Nxd4] 17...Ng3? 18.Bxa6! winning a pawn [His idea was 18.fxg3 Rxe3 19.Kf2 and he's good...again with pressure on the piece on e2. I thought about the tactic that my opponent missed in round one when i played 18.Bxa6] 18...bxa6 Now I've got 3 v. 1 on the queenside. The rest should basically take care of itself. 19.fxg3 d4 20.Bf4 Rxe1+ 21.Qxe1 Bxf3 22.gxf3 Qd5 23.Qe4 Qxe4 [I thought he would have done better to keep the pieces on with something like 23...Qb3 ] 24.fxe4 f6 [Something like 24...Re8 25.Re1 f5 would've put some pressure on my position] 25.Kf2 Kf7 26.b4 Ne5 27.Bxe5 Even though this protected his passer, I figured that the 3 v. 1 would take care of everything. 27...fxe5 28.Ke2 Ke6 29.Kd3 Rf8 30.Ke2 Oops 29.Kd3 was a mistake 30...g6 31.Rf1?? Rb8?? [I thought this was trouble but he didn't look at it 31...d3+ 32.Ke1 d2+ 33.Ke2 Rxf1 34.Kxf1 I would've been ticked and beaten] 32.Kd3 a5 33.Kc4 axb4 34.axb4 Rd8 35.b5 d3 36.b6 d2 37.Rd1 Rd4+ 38.Kb5 [38.Kc3 and just getting rid of the d-pawn was probably cleaner] 38...Kd7 39.c6+ Kc8 40.Kc5 Kb8

[I thought 41.Rf1 was a great move, but it turns out that 41.Ra1 was mate 41...d1Q 42.c7+ Kb7 43.Ra7+ Kc8 44.Ra8+ Kd7 45.c8Q+ Ke7 46.Qf8+ Ke6 47.Re8+ Kd7 48.Re7# I was happy enough with 41.Rf1 anyways] 41...Kc8 [41...d1Q 42.Rf8+ Rd8 43.c7+ Kc8 44.Rxd8+ Qxd8 45.cxd8Q+ Kxd8] 42.Rf8+ Rd8 43.b7+ Kb8 44.Rxd8+ He tried to take my rook with his pawn, not realizing he hadn't had time to promote. unfortunately, he had that d-pawn move, but i was still happy with the game. it was a nice win v. a strong opponent and i had a nice finish to it1-0

DR - C
Active Kitchener, ON (4), 06.09.2008
B12 - Caro-Kann : Advance

1.e4 c6
[I was gonna try something different against him, but I saw in round one he played the exchange Lopez against 1...e5 and I didn't want to take on a stronger player in that line] 2.d4 d5 3.e5 Bf5 4.Nf3 e6 5.Be2 Ne7 6.0-0 Nd7 The Karpov knights. 7.b3!? c5 8.c4 I think this is too ambitious a plan. 8...dxc4 9.Bxc4 Nc6 [9...cxd4 10.Qxd4 (10.Nxd4 Nxe5) 10...Nc6 would've worked as well.] 10.Ba3? Qa5 [10...Bg4 11.dxc5 (11.d5 Ncxe5 12.Nbd2 Nxc4 13.bxc4) 11...Ncxe5 His e-pawn was weak;
Giving up my castling could've worked as well 10...cxd4 11.Bxf8 Kxf8 12.Nxd4 Ndxe5 13.Nxf5 Qxd1 14.Rxd1 exf5] 11.Bb2 cxd4 12.Nxd4 Nxd4 [Could I have grabbed a pawn? It's tough, but I guess it works of the unprotected bishop 12...Qxe5 13.Re1 (13.Nb5 Qxb2 14.Nc7+ Kd8 15.Nxa8 Qxa1; 13.Nxc6 Qxb2) 13...Qf6 14.Bb5 Bc5 15.Bxc6 bxc6 16.Nxe6 Bxf2+ 17.Kxf2 Qxb2+ 18.Re2 Qxa1 oh man it's ugly] 13.Qxd4 Bc5 14.Qd2 Bb4? [After having the position ugly and him having lots of weaknesses, I was too ambitious to play for equality just with 14...Qxd2 15.Nxd2 Ke7 etc.] 15.Qe2 0-0 16.a3 Be7 17.Nd2 Rfe8? [I had grandiose ideas with overprotecting e6 so i could push ...f6 and get rid of the e-pawn, but why would I? isn't there a saying about the threat being stronger than the execution? 17...Rfd8 was better ] 18.b4 Qb6 19.Nb3 a6 [19...Rad8 would be better so if the position continued as it did, my rook wouldn't be stuck where he was] 20.Rfd1 Nf8?! [Playing over too many Suttles games. 20...Rad8 was better. Again I had idea of overprotecting e6 for no good reason] 21.Bd4 Qc7 22.Rac1 Qb8

This deserves a diagram and not for a good reason. I'm squeezed. The only thing I could see that wasn't bad was me playing ...b5, trading off light square bishops, and letting my queen get some air on the light squares. 23.Bb6 Bd8 [23...Bg5 would be okay putting some pressure on the c1-square, as that rook is probably his best piece. Any exchanges would make me a little easier to defend 24.Be3 Bxe3 25.Qxe3 and so on] 24.Bc5 b5? [I played out of order 24...Bc7 25.f4 b5 for instance 26.Bd3 Bxd3 27.Qxd3 and again I'm short on space, but it's playable] 25.Bd6 Bc7?? all excited about trading on d3 and missing the pin. [25...Qb6 26.Bd3 Bxd3 27.Rxd3] 26.Bxc7 Not the best end to the tournament...i made some bad decisions but all in all I didn't play so badly. I defended hard in the two games, i made the most of the tactical chances in the third game and then i was just outclassed in this game which isn't the end of the world. 1-0

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Volume 1 completed

As of today I have finished Volume 1 of the Duncan Suttles biography by Bruce Harper and Yasser Seirawan. The annotations are fabulous, the games are mindblowing...i am really enjoying it. if you are going to buy one volume, buy the first, it is more heavily annotated. Volume 2 is ECO A and Volume 3 is ECO B-E. I am going to start working on Volume 2 tomorrow likely. It's a nice combiation of Suttles' OTB games as well as his correspondence games. Here is Suttles' masterpiece

Bilek-Suttles, Venice 1974

1.c4 g6 2.g3 Bg7 3.Bg2 d6 4.Nc3 Nc6 5.d3 Nh6 6.e3 Bd7 7.Nge2
Qc8 8.h3 a6 9.b3 b5 10.Rb1 Rb8 11.Bb2 f6 12.Qd2 Nf7 13.Rc1
bxc4 14.dxc4 Nb4 15.f4 c5 16.Rd1 h5 17.Nd5 Nxd5 18.Qxd5 a5
19.Qd3 Rh7 20.Bc3 a4 21.Qc2 Kf8 22.Rb1 axb3 23.axb3 f5
24.Bxg7+ Kxg7 25.Kf2 h4 26.gxh4 Rxh4 27.Ng1 Bc6 28.Rh2 e5
29.Kg3 g5 30.fxg5 Re4 31.Kf2 Qh8 32.Nf3 Nxg5 33.Nxg5 Qh4+
34.Kg1 Qxg5 35.Kh1 Qxe3 36.Rg1 Kf6 37.Qb1 Qd4 38.Qc1 Rxb3
39.Qh6+ Ke7 40.Qg7+ Kd8 0-1

Saturday, June 28, 2008

double-bishop sack

yes it was a blitz game and yes he had a save (a couple likely, including anything else after 21.f5) but i did get off the double-bishop sack and win

[Event "ICS rated blitz match"]
[Site ""]
[Date "2008.06.28"]
[Round "-"]
[White "C"]
[Black "NN"]
[Result "1-0"]
[TimeControl "180"]

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nc6 5. Nc3 Qc7 6. Ndb5 Qb8 7. Bd3 a6 8. Na3 b5 9. Ne2 Bxa3 10. bxa3 Nge7 11. Bb2 O-O 12. f4 d5 13. exd5 exd5 14. O-O Bg4 15. h3 Bxe2 16. Qxe2 Re8 17. Bxh7+ Kxh7 18. Qh5+ Kg8 19. Bxg7 Kxg7 20. Qg5+ Ng6 21. f5 Ne5 22. fxg6 Nxg6 23. Qf6+ Kg8 24. Qxf7+ Kh8 25. Qxg6 Qa7+ 26. Kh1 Qg7 27. Qh5+ Qh7 28. Qxd5 Qxc2 29. Rf7 Qc3 30. Qh5+ Kg8 31. Qh7# 1-0

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Final Score - 3.5-2.5

Even though I got back-doored into a French and checkmated horribly, it just felt good to play...i need a weekend tournament of 5 games in 2 days to get me out of this mood :)

C02 - French : Advance Variation
Match Owen Sound (6), 22.05.2008

1.e4 c5
I figured I'd give him another crack at the Sicilian 2.d4 Unexpected 2...e6 3.c3! This is the downfall of my move order. White can basically force an Advanced French v. 2. ...e6. 3...d5 4.e5 Nc6 5.Nf3 Qb6 6.a3 c4 7.Be2 [7.Nbd2 is theory. I should be working on b3 since he didn't get there before m] 7...Nge7 [7...Na5 8.Nbd2 Bd7 is a more sensible set up for me] 8.Nh4 g5!? 9.Bxg5 [I won a pawn because Kirk thought that 9.Nf3 g4 10.Nfd2 h5 I was happy with the position because with the b- and c-pawns gone it's just a matter of marching my passed c-pawn in right?] 9...Qxb2 10.Nd2 Qxc3 11.0-0 Nxd4 12.Bh5 Rg8? 13.Bxf7+! Kxf7 14.Qh5+ Ng6 15.Qxh7+ Rg7 16.Qh5 Nf5 [16...Qd3] 17.Ndf3 Nfxh4 18.Nxh4 Qxe5 19.f4 Qd6 [19...Qb2 20.f5 exf5] 20.Rae1 Be7?? [20...Qc5+ 21.Kh1 d4 protecting the 5th rank although it's still ugly 22.Re5! Qxa3 23.Nxg6 (23.f5 exf5 24.Bh6 (24.Rfxf5+) ; 23...Rxg6 24.f5 exf5 25.Rexf5+ Bxf5 26.Rxf5+ Kg8 27.Qxg6+ Bg7 28.Qe6+ (28.Qf7+=) 28...Kh7 29.Bd2 protecting mate by me. The position is still won for Kirk, but there were a lot of exact moves he would have had to find...i certainly didn't see it over the board :)] 21.f5 Bxg5 22.fxe6+ Kg8 23.Nxg6 Rh7 24.Qxg5 Qxh2+ 25.Kf2 Rg7 26.Rh1 Rxg6 27.Qxg6+ Kf8 1-0

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Game 5

C - K
D35 - Queen's Gambit Declined : Exchange
Match Owen Sound (5), 20.05.2008

1.c4 Nf6
This was surprising. I played 2.d4 because he mentioned he was thinking about playing the Queen's Indian 2...c6 I don't believe there's a way to punish this move order, can't stop him from playing ...d5. Anand has played it. Kirk may have just allowed me to start playing the Semi-Slav again (without allowing the Colle) :) 3.Nf3 d5 4.Nc3 e6 5.cxd5!? [Not the best move but I didn't want to play v. the Cambridge Springs after 5.Bg5 ;
I didn't know the Shirov-Shabalov Gambit and I would feel funny playing the Meran for the first time in my life 5.e3. I had thought about this eventuality before the match started and decided to stick to my prep and play the exchange ] 5...exd5 [5...cxd5 is a bad Slav Exchange] 6.Bg5 Bf5? [6...Be7;
or 6...Nbd7 transpose to a normal QGD Exchange, but Kirk wanted to try and punish my move order, by getting the bishop out before his knight] 7.e3 [I knew that 7.Qb3 was probably stronger as moving the b-pawn was forced because he can't move his queen, but I wasn't interested in refuting. I wanted to try and push on the queenside] 7...Nbd7 [He could've tried 7...Qb6 here] 8.Bd3 Bxd3 9.Qxd3 g6

I had a couple of ideas here. I could've played on the queenside, pushed the e-pawn and played with the IQP or pushed h4 and went for the kingside attack. I thought I'd castle and decide between b4 and e4 10.0-0 Bg7 11.b4 [Kirk seemed to think that 11.e4 dxe4 12.Nxe4 0-0 13.Rfe1 was something fabulous, but I saw nothing great about it and I gave myself an isolated pawn for him to beat up on after something like 13...Qb6 14.Nxf6+ Nxf6 15.-- Nd5] 11...0-0 12.b5 [I could've tried 12.Rab1 ] 12...Qc7 Getting out of the pin 13.bxc6?! [13.Rab1 -- 14.Rfc1 was better 14...--;
I could've also tempoed his queen to a worse square 13.Bf4 ] 13...bxc6 14.Rfc1 Leaving the option of Rab1 open. I intended to protect the Rb8 by Bf4 eventually 14...Qd6 15.Bf4 Qe6 16.Na4 Ne4 [Fritz preferred getting rid of my bishop with 16...Nh5 ] 17.Nd2? [17.Rab1 -- 18.Rb7] 17...f5 [17...g5 would have traded off the bishop in all likelihood;
17...c5 was good as well] 18.Nxe4 fxe4 I wasn't worried about the position here because of the pressure on the backward c-pawn and he can't easily attack down the f-file. The one tactic I have to look out for is Bxd4, exd4, Rxf4 19.Qc3 Rac8 20.Nc5 Nxc5 21.Qxc5 Rf7! An obvious move but now can use Alekhine's Gun up the f-file and he also protects the a-pawn. I lost the thread here somewhere. I was going to try and trade off one pair of rooks and win either the c- or a-pawn 22.Rab1 Bf8 23.Qa5 Bd6 [23...Bg7 Renewing the threat of Bxd4 was okay] 24.Bxd6 Qxd6 25.Qa6 Qf6?? Big blunder. Kirk played pretty good up to this point [25...Rcc7 was decent, but I am bringing up pressure and that c-pawn is going to be hard to hold] 26.Qxc8+ So I'm up 3½-1½. Kirk hasn't played that well but like he said he hasn't looked at much chess lately 1-0

Sunday, May 11, 2008

C 2½-1½ K

C - K
A16 - English Defense
Match Owen Sound, ON (3), 11.05.2008

Game 3. I had to start playing better 1.c4 [I wanted to play the QGD Exchange again but went for the English move order instead of 1.d4 because I was worried about tranposing to the Slav. ] 1...d5?! [I expected 1...e6 ;
If 1...c6 I can just play 2.e4 and tranpose into a Panov] 2.cxd5 [Kirk said after that he was hoping for 2.d4 ] 2...Nf6 3.Nc3 [3.e4 was probably better as 3...Nxe4 4.Qa4+ loses] 3...Nxd5 This tranposes to a line i play as Black. 1.c4 Nf6 2.Nc3 d5 3.cxd5 Nxd5 4.e4 [Hoping to tranpose to a Grünfeld. 4.g3 is playable as well] 4...Nb4 [I thought he'd go for 4...Nxc3 5.bxc3 g6 6.d4 and get a Grünfeld] 5.d4? [5.Nf3 was better. I was worried about him playing Nd3+] 5...e5? [Shit 5...Qxd4 6.Qxd4 Nc2+ and he's better] 6.dxe5 Qxd1+ 7.Kxd1 Bc5 Now I'm better 8.a3 N4c6 9.f4 [9.Nd5 Kd7 10.f4 was better] 9...0-0 10.Nf3 [I could've pulled the trigger with 10.Nd5 as well 10...Rd8 11.Kc2] 10...Bg4 11.Be2 Bxf3 12.Bxf3 Nd4 13.Be3 c6 [I thought that 13...Nbc6 was better but after 14.Nd5 Kirk may have been right to stop my knight from getting to d5] 14.Na4 Rd8 15.Nxc5 Nb3+ 16.Kc2 Nxa1+ 17.Rxa1 b6 18.Nb7 Rd7 19.Nd6 c5

[20.e6 Rxd6 21.e5 Rxe6 22.Bxa8] 20...Rxf7 21.e6 Re7? [21...Rc7 I thought that 22.e7 was good but (22.Rd1 Nc6 23.Rd7 Rxd7 24.exd7 Rd8 25.e5 and now I have a won endgame but it is hard to prove 25...Nb8 26.e6 looks good) 22...Nc6! makes it almost even 23.e5 Kf7 24.Rd1] 22.e5 Nc6 23.Bxc6 he thought that he would be able to pick off the e-pawn and hopefully make a game of it but since i'm attacking his rook 23...Rd8 24.Bd7 and defending the e-pawn he resigned 1-0

K - C
E97 - King's Indian : Bayonet Attack
Match Owen Sound, ON (4), 11.05.2008

In between games I asked him if he wanted to take a break (sometimes we do that) he said no, so I thought I'd use my bit of "prep" (Bayonet attack) and try and wipe him off the board as he fell apart at the beginning of the last game 1.e4 g6 He thought quite a long time 2.d4 d6 3.Nf3 Bg7 4.c4 Nf6 [I was trying to make ...f5 work but I couldn't 4...Bg4 ;
or 4...c5 would be playable, but of course I was aiming for the King's Indian] 5.Nc3 0-0 6.Be2 e5 7.0-0 Nc6 8.d5 Ne7 9.b4 Nh5 [9...a5 is the other main line] 10.Re1 f5 [There were three lines I was looking at before the game...the text 10...a5 ;
and 10...Nf4 the mainline going 11.Bf1 f5 (or 11...a5 I couldn't remember the theory and this was the mainline) 12.g3 Nh5] 11.Ng5 Nf6 12.Ne6?! [The mainline is 12.f3 c6 13.Be3 and then i can play (13.b5 c5 14.a4) 13...Bh6 because if 14.h4 (14.Ne6 Bxe3+) 14...cxd5 taking away the threat of b5 (14...f4 15.Bf2 Bg7) 15.cxd5 Bd7;
or 12.Bf3 and I think I can play 12...c6 here too. The idea being that he should guard the e-pawn before he plunks his d-pawn on e6] 12...Bxe6 13.dxe6 Nxe4 [Maybe I should've played 13...fxe4 ] 14.Nxe4 fxe4 15.Bg4 Nf5 [I wanted to play 15...Nc6 aiming to d4, but after 16.Qd5 Qe7 (Of course I missed 16...Qh4! 17.e7+ Rf7 18.Qd1) ] 16.Qd5 c6 17.Qxe4 [17.e7+ cxd5 18.exd8Q Raxd8 19.cxd5 and so on] 17...Qe7 [17...d5 18.cxd5 cxd5 was okay too. I wanted to keep the d-pawn protected by a pawn though so I could eventually play Qe7] 18.Rb1 Nd4?! [Not sure why I didn't just play 18...Qxe6 ] 19.b5 Rab8?! [19...Rad8 was better in every way...took the tactics off the b-file and also protected the d-pawn with something besides the queen] 20.Ba3? [20.bxc6 bxc6 21.Be3 (or even the same idea as the text with 21.Rxb8 Rxb8 22.Ba3 was better. The text falls to tactics) ] 20...Rf4 21.Qe3 Rxg4 22.bxc6 Qxe6?! [I could've removed what little drama was left with 22...Nxc6! and I'm just up a piece] 23.Rxb7 Nxc6 [I could've also tried 23...Rf8 ] 24.Rxb8+ Nxb8 25.Qxa7 Nd7 [Of course 25...Nc6 26.Qa8+ Bf8 27.Qxc6] 26.Rd1 Rd4? [Missing the tactic of 26...Rxg2+ 27.Kxg2 Qg4+;
He's playing for tricks. I could've just played 26...Rxc4 and he couln't have done anything because of back rank tricks] 27.Qa8+ Bf8 28.Re1 Qxc4 29.Rc1 Qa4 funnily seeing the double attack on d1 but not the mate in 2.

Kirk didn't play that well but I played better. Will have to think how I will play the last 2 games[29...Qxc1+ 30.Bxc1 Rd1# Man I wasn't very sharp] 0-1

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Match v. K.

Me and K decided to have a 6-game rated active match. It didn't start off too good for me. I will annotate the games after the match lest i give away some ideas

C - K
D36 - Queen's Gambit Declined : Exchange, 6.Qc2
Match Owen Sound (1), 03.05.2008

This was my favourite game of the match, despite the result 1.d4 d5 A good choice by Kirk, avoiding the French. He was pretty sure I wasn't going to allow him to play the Cambridge Springs, so he could count on the QGD 2.c4 e6 [If he tried to get into the Semi-Slav via 2...c6 I was going to play 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 e6 5.cxd5 and either get a great Slav Exchange or play a QGD Exchange with Nf3] 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Bg5 c6 6.Qc2 Be7 7.e3 g6?! Normally this is played with the inclusion of Nf3 so after [7...g6 8.Nf3 Black can play 8...Bf5 9.Bd3 Bxd3 10.Qxd3 etc.;
or 7...0-0 are theory. The position almost ends up like a Grünfeld with Bg5, e3 etc. It's interesting. I wonder if Kirk will try to improve him move order next time.] 8.Bd3 0-0 [8...Nbd7 has been played by a couple of people including Tom O'Donnell;
The immediate 8...Nh5 is not good because of 9.Bxe7 Kxe7 (9...Qxe7 10.Nxd5 cxd5 11.Qxc8+) 10.Nf3 and so on] 9.Nge2 Played with the wrong intentions. This should have been played with the intention of castling kingside, playing f3 and e4 etc. Instead I wanted to keep the option of kingside castling open. [9.Nf3 was just as good. I don't have to play the QGD EXchange without Nf3] 9...Nh5 10.Bxe7 Qxe7 11.Ng3? [Not the best move in the world. King safety should have been higher on my list 11.0-0 ] 11...Nxg3 [During the game I thought that 11...Nf4 was good with something along the lines of 12.0-0 Nxd3 13.Qxd3 sure it takes a few moves, but his position is okay] 12.hxg3 Bg4 13.Ne2 Again with the intention of castling, but I get greedy [13.Kd2 may have been okay, not worrying about castling at all, but i was worried about an eventual ...c5 and opening all the lines to my king] 13...Nd7 14.f3 Qxe3!? [I thought that getting tempo with 14...Be6 ;
or something like 14...Qb4+ 15.Qd2 Qxd2+ 16.Kxd2 was forced. I've got to look wider] 15.fxg4 Rfe8 16.Qd2 [16.Kd1 getting rid of the pin was good] 16...Qxg3+ [16...Qxd4 was probably as good, gettign rid of a central pawn and leaving me with the Irish pawns

Now my king being in the center (and the queen being on the king's safest square d2) i'm in trouble. But so is his king, it's a race to see who gets mated first] 17.Kd1 Qxg4 18.Kc2? [To connect rooks but 18.Qh6 allowing my king to get to d2 (which i missed) was a lot better 18...Nf6 19.Kd2] 18...Nf6 19.Raf1 I thought I was in good shape here 19...Ne4 20.Qh6 Ng5 21.Kc3? [21.Rf2! was the move because it overprotected everything allowing me to trap his queen. the threat is 21...-- 22.Rh4 Qe6 23.Qxg5 and so on. I didn't even look for quiet moves. I wasn't ready for this game] 21...c5 22.Rf4 cxd4+ 23.Rxd4 Rac8+ 24.Kd2?? [I was in time trouble, but this was still exactly the wrong move 24.Kb3 because my rook controlled the entry file 24...Qxg2 25.Rh2 and I'm set 25...Qf1 (25...Rxe2 26.Rxg2 Rxg2 is best according to Fritz) 26.Qxg5] 24...Rxe2+ 25.Bxe2 Qxd4+ 26.Ke1 Rc1+ Nicely played game by Kirk. Taking advantage of what I gave him. I had a bit of time trouble but didn't look hard enough when it needed looking. I thought far too hard (and long) about responding to 9. ...Nh5. I didn't realize that d2 was the safest spot for my king until i looked at the game after

In the next game I am going to start with 1.c4 and transpose back into the same line. I won't be so worried about playing Nf4 and will probably play 9.Nf3 this time 0-1

K - C [B22]
B22 - Sicilian : Alapin variation
Match Owen Sound (2), 03.05.2008

1.e4 c5 2.c3!?
[A big surprise. I got cautious. Normally he had played (and I had readied myself for) 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e5 7.Nb3 Be6 et al. I knew I had to be careful because he normally sticks to his repertoire] 2...d5 [Because I was nervous I decided to play this instead of my usual 2...Nf6 3.e5 Nd5 4.d4 cxd4 5.cxd4 thinking something was up. Something was up but unfortunately it was in this line 5...Nc6 6.Nf3 d6 7.Bc4 Nb6 8.Bb3 d5 is a line. i will check out others] 3.exd5 Qxd5 4.d4 e6 5.Nf3 Nf6 6.Na3! This was something specially prepared by Kirk. Good for him I said. 6...cxd4 [6...Qd8 is the main line, but I didn't want to waste a tempo. This actually looks better for White. Crazy. It tranposes back to a 1.e4 c5 2.Na3 game with 7.Nc2 Tiviakov has made a living out of this line. Do I look for an improvement earlier?] 7.Nb5 Na6 8.Qa4!? Another interesting move by Kirk. He brought his creativity if nothing else 8...Qe4+? [I couldn't make this work after something like 8...Bd7 9.Qxd4 (9.Qxa6 Qe4+ Of course! Intermezzo. Dammit) 9...Bc5 was much better] 9.Be2 Bd7 10.Qxd4 Bc5 11.Nc7+ [11.Qxc5 Nxc5 12.Nd6+ may have been good if he really wanted to get the queens off] 11...Nxc7 12.Qxc5 Na6 [A more active move was 12...Ncd5 ] 13.Qe5 0-0 14.0-0 Qc6 15.Bh6 Qd5 I'll have to look at this move order after 16.Qxd5 Nxd5 17.Bxa6 bxa6 and he's better 18.Bd2 Rab8 19.b3 Rfc8 20.c4 I was mentally defeated here, playing stupid moves, but i couldn't find any play. 20...Nf6 21.Rfe1?! [21.Rfd1 would've taken care of what few chances i have] 21...Bc6 22.Ne5 Be4 23.Bg5 Bg6 24.Bxf6 gxf6 25.Nd7 i missed this. Now in addition to a terrible, passive position i am down a pawn 25...Rb7 26.Nxf6+ Kg7 27.Ne4 Rd8 28.f3 [28.Nc5 would've made doubling up on the d-file impossible 28...Rb6 29.Rad1 looks good] 28...Rbd7 29.Rac1 [29.Kf2 would've saved the day] 29...Bxe4= [29...Bxe4= Kirk offered a draw but Fritz thinks overwise. Let's see 30.fxe4 Rd2 31.Ra1 Rb2 32.Red1 works. darn it 32...Rxd1+ 33.Rxd1 Rxa2 34.Rd7 Rb2 35.Rxa7 Rxb3 36.Rxa6 Rc3 37.Rc6 Kf6 even still this would have taken some finesse.

For next game I will have to decide whether to try this line again, or to play the Alekhine-esque 2. ...Nf6.

But the real question is do i find a line of the Bayonet which I think i will like? That's probably the best thing i can do for round 4.] ½-½

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Application of Chess Theory

One of my Christmas gifts has been completed

It is an autobiography of Efim Geller's greatest games. The games are beautiful and organized by opening which I enjoyed. He was great in the Ruy Lopez, Be2 Sicilian v. Najdorf and King's Indian Defense among others. It was organized into his 64 best games, and then his 36 wins v. World Champions including Euwe, Botwinnik, Smyslov, Petrosian, Tal, Spassky, Fischer and Karpov. The games are excellent, I enjoyed his writing style...a very enjoyable book to go through

i purchased a three volume set called "Chess on the Edge" on Canadian Grandmaster Duncan Suttles by Bruce Harper and Yasser Seirawan. It has the two author's signatures as well as Suttles. I'm real excited about getting into those. The first volume is Suttles' 100 greatest games and the second volume is his ECO-A games and the third volume is his ECO B-E games.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

3.5/5 in Guelph

I just got back from Guelph, scored 3.5/5 in the U1800 division being paired up every round. i gained almost 100 points. i didn't play that great but i played "better than my opponent" three times, as the saying goes. i'll add the annotations as i do them.

i do need to calculate better and i need to work on my caro repetoire a little bit, but basically i got good positions out of the opening in any games. i didn't calculate nearly enough and i ran out of gas and fighting spirit in rounds 4 and 5. just need to play more

we'll see what fritz and my coach say

FS - C
Guelph Pro-Am U1800 (1), 02.02.2008
A05 - King's Indian Attack

This was a game against the second highest player in the tourney. The first round started an hour later than originally anticipated so we didn't need to leave OS at 5am(!) 1.Nf3 Nf6 2.g3 g6 3.Bg2 Bg7 4.b3 0-0 5.Bb2 c6 I had decided to play ...c6, ...d6 and ...e5 against his King's Indian attack 6.c4 d6 7.Nc3 e5 8.0-0 Bg4 9.h3 Bxf3 I'm sure this isn't the strongest, but this was inspired by Lawrence Day's book on Nickoloff and his opinion that the King's Indian lines with ...Bg4 were underrated. 10.Bxf3 Nbd7 11.Rc1 Re8 Again I'm playing with a plan. He refuse to take his share of the center with pawns, so I'm going to try to take mine and his 12.d3 Nf8! He was playing quicker than me before this move, but thought for almost 15-20 minutes on this move, which is a lot considering the time control was G/50+50 seconds. From e6 my knight will be able to hit e4 and also come at the kingside if necessary 13.Rc2 Ne6 14.e3 Qd7 15.Bg2 Nh5 Trying to induce g4 and open up holes in his kingside 16.Kh2 f5 17.g4!? Strange that he would play it here and not the previous move 17...fxg4 18.hxg4 Nf6 19.Ne4 Qe7 Being able to get at h4 to check and also allowing my other rook to go over and guard d6 20.Kg3 Strange that he tries to move his king of all pieces into the fray [20.Nxf6+ Qxf6 21.Rh1 seems a little better] 20...h5 [Maybe too ambitious 20...Nxe4+ 21.dxe4 Rf8 same position without the inclusion of h5 was better] 21.f3 [21.Nxf6+ Qxf6 22.gxh5 was better according to Fritz] 21...Nxe4+ 22.dxe4 h4+ 23.Kh2!? [I really thought he was going to play 23.Kf2 and run to the center/queenside where all his pieces were. I would have to reorganize my attack after something like 23...h3 24.Bh1 Qh4+ 25.Ke2] 23...Bh6= and I offered a draw somewhere around here. I had most of the active play and he was rated higher, but he refused kinda arrogantly so we continued... 24.Bc1 Rf8 25.b4 Rad8 26.b5 c5 [Fritz preferred 26...Nc5 to blocking up the queenside] 27.Kh3 [27.Qd5 was Fritz's reasoning about the weakness of giving up d5] 27...Ng5+

28.Kxh4?? [28.Kh2 was what i expected either a repetition of moves or me allowing my pieces to try and come up the h-file. Instead he walked into a mate in 2] 28...Nxf3+ 29.Kg3 I think when he grabbed the pawn he missed that my rook was on f8 29...Qh4# Nice start to the tourney. The mate was lucky but I held my own regardless 0-1

C - DG
Guelph Pro-Am U1800 (2), 02.02.2008
E73 - King's Indian : Averbakh Variation

1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5 g6 3.c4 Bg7 4.Nc3 0-0 5.e4 d6 6.Be2 [One other option instead of dedicating my bishop to e2 is to play 6.f3 and go in for more of a Samisch type thing but with the option of the bishop on d3 and the knight on e2] 6...e5? Textbook trap taken from Averbakh's "Tactics". This move is the reason that I started playing the Averbakh in the first place. Obvious moves lose :) 7.dxe5 dxe5 8.Qxd8 Rxd8 9.Nd5 Nbd7 10.Nxc7 Rb8 11.0-0-0 h6 12.Bxf6 Bxf6 13.Nd5 Bg7 14.Nf3 Kf8 15.h4 Nc5 16.Nd2 f5 17.f3 [The text was unnecessary as he couldn't really open up the f-file and give me lines for my rook 17.b4 was probably better 17...Nxe4 18.Nxe4 fxe4 19.h5] 17...f4 18.Nb1 Ne6! i missed that he had an outpost as well 19.Na3 Nd4= and I offered a draw around here. I'm a pawn to the good but I'm also exhausted. He declined but i bet he wishes he wouldn't have :) 20.Rhe1 Bd7 21.Bd3 [The immediate 21.Nc2 was better as my light squared bishop was the worst piece on the board] 21...Rdc8 22.Kb1 Rc5 23.Nc2 Ne6 24.Bf1 Protecting one of my few weak points (g2) but h4 was weak as well, luckily he had no quick/decent way to get at it 24...Ba4?! I didn't like this move but I can't find a decent plan for him. 25.b3 Be8 26.Kb2 b5? The question mark is because it gets rid of my light squared bishop 27.cxb5 Bxb5 28.Bxb5 Rcxb5 29.Na3 R5b7 30.Nc4 Nd4 He gets back to d4 but he can't do anything. My knights are great 31.Rc1 [31.Rxd4 exd4 Fritz liked 32.Nxf4 but why complicate the position when I'm doing quite well] 31...Kg8 32.Na5 to trade off the knight 32...Rd7 33.Nc6 Nxc6 34.Rxc6 Rbd8 35.Rxg6 Kh7 36.Rc6 Rxd5 37.exd5 Rxd5 38.Re4 [38.Kc2 may have been better...getting out of the line of fire] 38...Rd2+ 39.Rc2 Rxc2+? keeping material onthe board was likely better 40.Kxc2 Kg6 41.Ra4 Kh5 42.Kd2 Kxh4 43.Ke2 Kg3 44.Kf1 h5 45.Rxa7 Bf8 46.Rf7 Bc5 47.Rf5 Bd4? 48.Rxh5 e4 49.Rh3# Not the greatest game, but it was a win v a player ranked almost 200 points higher than me. I busted him out of the opening and calculated when I needed to 1-0

C - KW
Guelph Pro-Am U1800(3), 02.02.2008
E73 - King's Indian : Averbakh Variation

An exciting game, but I'm sure that Fritz will blow holes in it. Better to let the computer analyze the games you lose than the ones you win :) I'll give some thoughts 1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5 g6 3.c4 Bg7 [I imagine going into some sort of Benoni might be good for Black here 3...c5 4.d5 (4.Bxf6 exf6 is almost forced) 4...Ne4 looks good for Black] 4.Nc3 0-0 5.e4 d6 6.Be2 Nbd7 [No 6...e5 this time.] 7.Qd2 Re8 [I would think it would be better to try to induce d5 with 7...c5 ;
or here 7...e5 ] 8.0-0-0 b6? [8...e5 would have been playable here after setting up the rook and the knight to defend it] 9.h4 [Oh man! I had this one won in 9 moves as well 9.e5! dxe5 (9...Bb7 10.Bf3 Bxf3 11.Nxf3 Ng4 12.h3) 10.dxe5 Bb7 11.exf6 exf6 12.Qxd7 Qxd7 13.Rxd7 Bxg2 14.Bf3 That's what I like about the Averbakh King's Indian. Obvious moves lose :) I will have to push the e5 pawn. Again I didn't calculate enough...I just wanted to get developed. I played h4 because I thought if he was wasting time on the queenside I would go for the king] 9...Bb7 10.f3 h5 11.Nh3 a6 12.Nf2 I was happy with this move 12...c5 Well played. Making his dark squared bishop more valuable 13.d5 a5 14.g4 Ba6 15.gxh5 Nxh5 16.f4? [An interesting idea but not quite right 16.Rdg1 ] 16...f6 17.f5 I figured with all the open files and a passed pawn on g6 he couldn't last long. His queenside attack wasn't coming too quickly 17...fxg5 18.Bxh5? [Fritz preferred 18.Qxg5 coming up the g-file, but the pushing of the e-pawn caused the same sort of issues as in the game] 18...gxh5 19.hxg5 Ne5 20.g6 [20.Qe2 may have been better, eyeing the h-pawn and not getting tempo-ed to g5] 20...Nxc4 21.Qg5 b5?! [He had to see that I was building up my forces 21...e6 22.Qxh5 (So I probably would have had to play 22.Qxd8 Raxd8 23.dxe6 but it's hard to take the brakes off sometimes) 22...exf5 opens up lines to my king] 22.Rxh5 b4? Let the fireworks start [22...e5 23.Qg4 b4 24.Rdh1 bxc3 works in this line 25.Rh8+ Bxh8 26.Rxh8+ Kxh8 (26...Kg7 27.Rh7+ Kg8=) 27.Qh5+ Kg7= because i check from h5 instead of h6;
22...e6 was stronger because if i don't trade off the queens he can open up the e-file 23.Qg4 (23.Qxd8 Raxd8 24.dxe6 and he has the attack) 23...exf5 24.Qh3 Qe7 25.Rh8+] 23.Rdh1 bxc3 24.Rh8+ Bxh8 25.Rxh8+ Kg7 [25...Kxh8 26.Qh6+ Kg8 27.Qh7+ Kf8 28.Qf7#] 26.Qh6+ Kf6 27.Ng4#

Not a perfect game, but I was given a straightforward plan (Fischer's sac-sac-mate) and I was able to make due. I have done that a couple of times in this line and I am 4-0 playing the Averbakh line v. the King's Indian in CFC games 1-0

Guelph Pro-Am U1800(4), 03.02.2008
B12 - Caro-Kann ; Advanced Variation

1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 Bf5 4.Bd3 Bxd3 5.Qxd3 e6 6.f4 Qa5+ 7.Bd2 Qa6 8.Qxa6 Nxa6 I don't want to spend too much time on the opening, but this is an idea of Nimzowitsch's that i have played over the years. It takes most of the juice out of White's position, but it's not easy to play for Black and he has to work hard to get anything out of the position. 9.a3 c5 10.Nf3 cxd4 [10...Nh6 is a better idea to get at d4 from f5. It never even crossed my mind. It will cross my mind next time.] 11.b4 [I missed this inbetween move and was counting on 11.Nxd4 Bc5 to solve my dark-squared bishop problems] 11...f5? An anti-positional move, but i had a tough time developing. I guess the ...Nh6 idea was the best spot to go. [if i really wanted to push the f-pawn, one square forward probably would have been better. 11...f6 I should've spent more time at this point in the game. My development was tough. I couldn't fianchetto very well with the pawns the way they were and e7 didn't appear to be any better than f8 for the bishop (except that it would allow me to castle or connect my rooks)] 12.Nxd4 Kd7 [12...Nc7 was playable here, although i think my king wasn't in a terrible spot] 13.Nc3 Hans recommended a plan along the lines of 13. Be3 -- 14.c4 -- 15. Nc3 -- 16.Rd1 for her and said the ending "should have led to a draw" 13. ... Nc7 14.0-0 Ne7 15.Na4 b6 [K's recommendation 15...Nc6 16.Nb3 (16.Nxc6 Kxc6 is fine) 16...b5 17.Nac5+ Bxc5+ 18.Nxc5+ Ke7 and I'm fine. This position is much better than what happened in the game] 16.Be3 Nc6 17.Rfc1 Nxd4 [I could've also played 17...b5 18.Nc5+ (18.Nxc6 Kxc6 19.Nc5 Bxc5 20.Bxc5 a5) 18...Bxc5 19.bxc5 and I'm good too] 18.Bxd4 Be7? [18...b5 getting rid of my stupid bishop was better, but i wanted to unite my rooks before she got c4 in. this protects v. c4 as well though] 19.Bxb6 axb6 20.Nxb6+ Kc6 21.Nxa8 Rxa8 22.c4 dxc4 23.Rxc4+ Kb6 24.Rac1 and i resigned.

She told me that I should've played on. She was right...I was dead tired at that point and I had mentally resigned once I saw she could take the e-pawn (which I thought was holding the position together) 24...-- [Some of the lines which held were 24...Nd5 25.Rc6+ (25.g3 Rxa3 26.Rc6+ Kb5 27.Rxe6 Rd3 (27...Kxb4) ; 25...Kb5 26.Rxe6 Nxf4 27.Rxe7 Ne2+ 28.Kf2 Nxc1 29.Rxg7 Rxa3 30.Rxh7 Nd3+ 31.Ke3 Nxe5+ 32.Kf4 Nd3+ 33.Kxf5 Kxb4 34.h4 Ra5+ I think I'm going to play this position out a couple of times (from both sides) against my brother at a decent time (30 min plus a piece) to get used to unbalanced material positions.] 1-0

MP - C
Guelph Pro-Am U1800(5), 03.02.2008
E32 - Nimzo-Indian : Classical Variation

This was the last round, I was a little burned out and wanted to go home 1.e4 [This game has an interesting transposition into 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 0-0 5.Bg5 c5 6.e3 cxd4 7.exd4 d5 8.Nf3] 1...c6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.c4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e6 6.Nf3 Bb4 7.Bg5 [7.cxd5 is the main line 7...Nxd5 8.Bd2 Nc6] 7...0-0 8.Qc2?! I think this wasn't the best move at this point. [He wanted to avoid losing a tempo by 8.Bd3 and also he wanted to work on h7, but the idea of castling queenside wasn't so good] 8...b6 [Maybe trying to work on the isolated pawn with 8...Nc6 was better. I had a development scheme in mind (that i played) with ...b6, ...Nbd7 and ...Bb7] 9.Bd3 h6 [I missed his 9th move. I thought I could just play 9...dxc4 but i think that 10.Bxh7+ Kh8 11.Be4 is great for White] 10.Bf4? I think this was another bad move. He should've either kept the pin on or exchanged. 10...dxc4 11.Bxc4 Bb7 12.0-0-0?! Nbd7 13.Ne5 Rc8 Piling up on the knight 14.Bb3 Bd5= and I was much better (and i knew it) but i offered a draw to go home. A great tournament (results wise) for me. My next goal is to get above 1700 so i can play in the U2100 next time. ½-½

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Pre-Guelph (1 and 2)

K - C
Pre-Guelph Owen Sound (1), 28.01.2008
E91 - King's Indian

I am going to a tournament in Guelph this weekend so K decided to challenge me to a couple of quick games (G/10+20 seconds) to warm up. I asked him to play up to move 6 this game 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Nf3 0-0 6.Be2 Bg4 [Mainline is 6...Nc6 7.0-0 e5 8.d5 etc. but I was inspired by Lawrence Day's book on Bryon Nickoloff and Nickoloff's use of this move order. Spassky has also used it as well as Ivanov] 7.0-0 [7.Be3 is the main line. Normally White can't get away with this becaue of ...Ng4] 7...Nc6 [Continuing in a normal KID way. 7...Nbd7 was playable as well] 8.Re1 [8.Be3] 8...e5 9.Be3 [9.d5 Bxf3 10.Bxf3 Nd4] 9...exd4 [9...Bxf3 10.Bxf3 exd4 was stronger because then I got the dark squared bishop off for sure 11.Bxd4 Nxd4 12.Qxd4] 10.Nxd4 Bxe2 11.Ndxe2 Ne5 I'm happy with my position. 12.b3 This was forced and opens up the diagonal for my dark squared bishop 12...Nfg4 13.Nf4? [I thought 13.Bf4 taking away the queen idea as he can retreat to g3 if necessary] 13...Nxc4? [13...Qh4 immediately was better 14.Nh3 Nxh2 15.Kxh2 Ng4+ 16.Kg1 Bxc3] 14.bxc4 [14.Qxg4 Bxc3 15.bxc4 Bxa1 16.Rxa1 was better for K] 14...Bxc3 [same idea 14...Qh4 I had the right idea but all in the wrong order] 15.Qc2? [15.Qxg4 i thought] 15...Nxe3? [A comedy of errors. I should've just grabbed the exchange 15...Bxe1 ] 16.Qxc3 Ng4 17.Nd5 Qh4 18.f3? [18.Qg3] 18...Qxh2+ 19.Kf1 Qh1+ 20.Ke2 Qxg2+ 21.Kd1 Ne5 [21...Nf2+ 22.Kc1 Qg5+ 23.Kb1] 22.f4 Qf3+ Three pawns up I have to trade 23.Qxf3 Nxf3 24.Rf1 Nd4 25.Nxc7 Rac8 26.Nb5 Nxb5 27.cxb5 Rc5 28.a4 Re8 29.Re1 Rc4 30.e5 dxe5 0-1and he resigned.

Not the greatest game, but he made the last error

C - K
Sadler_C - Sadler_K
Pre-Guelph Owen Sound (2), 28.01.2008
C18 - French : Winawer

1.d4 e6 So after the first game I was feeling pretty good, so I decided to play 2.e4 and give the French a go. It has been my nemesis over the years, but I've been reading over some stuff and the Winawer doesn't seem so scary anymore. 2...d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 c5 5.a3 Bxc3+ [I was worried for a second he would play 5...Ba5 my mind went blank on what to play v. this] 6.bxc3 Qc7 7.Qg4 f5!? [Botwinnik played this against Tal. The main line of the Poisoned Pawn is 7...Ne7 8.Qxg7 Rg8 9.Qxh7 cxd4 10.Ne2] 8.Qg3 [8.Qh5+ g6 (but Black can also go for the endgame after 8...Qf7 9.Qxf7+ Kxf7) 9.Qd1] 8...cxd4 9.Ne2? [Being too "brilliant" 9.cxd4 was good enough] 9...dxc3 10.Nxc3 I thought I was better here, Fritz disagrees 10...f4? [Dropping a pawn 10...a6 was better] 11.Bxf4 d4? [Again 11...a6 was better] 12.Nb5 Qa5+ 13.Kd1 [Again trying to be brilliant 13.Bd2 was much better (and winning) 13...Qd8 (13...Qb6 14.Qxg7) 14.Qxg7 +- ] 13...Ne7 14.Nd6+ [14.Qxg7 Rg8 15.Qxh7] 14...Kd7 15.Bb5+ [I was losing the thread here, and should have taken my time 15.Qxg7 is good enough] 15...Nbc6 16.Bd2 Qb6 17.Rb1 a6 18.Bxc6+ Qxc6 19.Ba5 b5 20.Qd3 Qd5 [I thought I was good with 20...Qxg2 21.Re1 but of course 21...Nc6 guarding everything saved the day] 21.a4 Qxe5 22.Nxb5? [Brutal. I should've just bit the proverbial bullet and played 22.Nxc8 ] 22...axb5 23.Rxb5 Qf4 24.Re1 Ba6 25.Re4 [25.Qb3 was better 25...Bxb5?? 26.Qxe6+ Ke8 27.Qxe7#] 25...Qxe4? [25...Qxf2 was much better as his queen guards d4 26.Qxd4+ (26.Rxd4+) 26...Qxd4+ 27.Rxd4+ Nd5] 26.Qxe4 Bxb5 27.Qxd4+? [We both missed a lot of tactics 27.Qb7+! Ke8 (27...Kd6 28.Bc7+ Kd7 29.Be5+ Kd8 30.Qxa8+ Nc8 31.axb5) 28.Qxa8+] 27...Nd5 28.axb5 Rhg8 [28...Rxa5 29.Qxg7+] 29.Bd2 Ke7 30.c4 Nf6 31.Qc5+ Kf7 32.Kc2? [Something like 32.Bb4 was better. I walked into a tactic] 32...Ra2+! 33.Kc1 [33.Kc3 Ne4+] 33...Rxd2 34.b6 [34.Qc7+ Rd7;
34.Kxd2 Ne4+
] 34...Rgd8 35.b7? Should've moved my queen...the position of it took a bunch of squares away because of forking possibilities. My game is still in a shambles 35...Rd1+ 36.Kb2 R8d2+ 37.Ka3 Ra1+ 38.Kb4 Rb1+ 39.Ka5?? [39.Ka3 Rxb7 wasn't still terrible for me] 39...Ra2+ Comedy of errors. At least it was an interesting game :) I wasn't happy with the quality of play, but i was happy with the style of play (if that makes sense)? 0-1

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Botwinnik-Tal 1961

Today I finished Botwinnik-Tal 1961. There were some very interesting games played by both players, I think the turning point was game 11 where Botwinnik beat him in a prepared variation of the Slav exchange (!) It was a very short book...21 games lightly annotated. The interesting part was the interviews with Botwinnik as well as his "opening notebooks" for the matches. He even prepared for the King's Gambit ;)

I'm playing in a tournament the first weekend in February so it's tactics for a month

Happy New Year