Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Game of the Week

Played Sunday 2006.05.14 on Free Internet Chess Server

When I saw my opponents rating (1398,) I thought “Well I am going to lose this game.” Because his rating was about 50 points higher then my current rating. Generally speaking though, I have a tendency to win those games where I don't think I have chance because I am not overly confident.


This is my usual opening for white, it is more strategic in focus, while e4 is more tactical.

... Nf6

This is the King's Indian line
2.c4 e6

He's no longer in book, I am basically on my own.

3.Nc3 Bb4

He is pinning my knight, hoping by exchanging a bishop for a knight so that he can damage my pawn structure enough to win the end game. I am going to let him. A bishop has a true value of 3.5 points, while a knight is worth only 3. Bishops usually dominate over knight, especially in an open position.

I force him to make his mind up, exchange the Bishop or retreat.
... Bxc3+
5.bxc3 c5

He would like me to take his pawn on c5, giving me tripled pawns which are very weak. I would prefer that he takes, which after I retake will repair my pawn structure.

This defends against him planting his Knight on e4, followed by a queen to a5 would put a double hit on my helpless c3 pawn. Now it will take him longer.
... Qa5

As I expected, he pins my c3 pawn with his Queen.


This unpins the pawn. Now cxd no longer wins the d pawn

.... Nc6
8.e3 0-0

Developing moves.
... d5

Now the fight for the center.


His biggest threat right now is cxd, making me waste a tempo on Bxd, while I have lined up my Bishop and Queen on his h7 pawn which would damage his King cage.

I would also like to move my c3 pawn to make a discovered attack on his Queen.
... Re8

He is hoping to create a ugly pin on my e3 pawn (after some pawn trades.) I decide to castle and end the tactical threat.
11.0-0 h6

h6 is probably a waste of a good tempo. Notice the potential for a discovered attack on the black queen.

12.cxd5 exd5
13.c4 Qc7

With the discovered attack on the Queen, I win a pawn. Not a game winning move, but a slight advantage.

14.dxc5 dxc4

We now have an open position, my Bishops should dominate.

... Bg4

He is hoping to damage my king cage after 16. ... Bxf3 17. gxf
So I just move the Night out, where it actually is more powerful.

16.Nd4 Rad8

He probably should have exchanged Nights. Now my Knight is free to look for a stronger square. Nb5 attacks the Queen and then lets my Knight plant itself on d6, where it will become a thorn in his side. A Knight on the rim is dim, but a well placed Night can be worth a rook!

17.Nb5 Qe5
18.Nd6 Re7

He is now threating my c5 pawn with his Queen, which will undermine the defense of my Knight, but I can defend the whole mess by Bc3. Bc3 threatens to exchange my Bishop for his Knight and then if he retakes his King cage is damaged. If he doesn't retake I will win the exchange of BxR.
19.Bc3 Qxc5

It's not good, but he did it. I actually under analyzed the whole mess (this was speed chess afterall) and didn't realize how good the move was. Because after Bxf6 gxf, Bxf7 leaving a discovered attack on his Queen.

20.Bxf6 gxf6
21.Bxf7+ Rxf7

His position is now a mess and he misses obvious threats. The game is now basically over. I have won a Queen and a pawn for the price of a Bishop and Bishop for Knight exchange. A gain of 6.5 points for those of you who are counting. Whats more his pawn structure on the King side is a total mess, he has just two isolated pawns.

23.Qc4+ Kg7

I am now up a whole Queen plus a pawn, his position is hopeless and therefore he resigns.
In the FICS rating system, I go up 9 points for my effort.

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