I played in the old club yesterday, here is the game. No surprises with pairings, one of the opponents that I expected. I am Black,  also as expected – Ruy, closed.  I decided beforehand to play Flohr-Zaitsev, Black plays in this case 9… Bb7 instead of Na5. I prepared it some time ago as an alternative to Marshall attack and played one correspondence game, which ended in a draw. Zaitsev was Karpov’s trainer and Karpov popularized this variation and played it with success for many years.  OK, the guy is 1700 rated, never played with him before. I try to play actively, don’t get an advantage, but kind of like my position. Then I decide  to put pressure with 25… f4 with the idea of following f3. Suddenly he sacrifices a piece on f4. I see right away that he wants to put his queen on g6 creating a battery with the bishop. I think that I can defend with Rf6, so I accept it. Then I don’t like his possible check from b3  and see that I can counter with the sac on d4. Friz says, that simple Ne7 with the same idea of opening diagonal for my bishop, but also defending g6 did the trick.

I have to say that he plays very fast from the beginning and at some moment I have 30 minutes vs his hour. I don’t see his mistake  on move 32 and let his queen go to g3. By move  40 he is lost, but I have about 15 minutes left vs his 30-35. A few more moves, I have 10 minutes left and he makes provocative move Be8. I see that I can’t take the bishop because of the pin, but then for some reason decide to move it on b5, forgetting that after bishop exchange Rf1 can be played. I lose the piece, get completely disoriented and blunder the queen with next move. The game is lost anyway.

Being very, very upset I return home where my old, loyal Fritz calms me down, telling me that I basically played well, had an advantage and could win in one move with Bxg2+ instead of Bb5. The same move was also winning before in the line 32.  …  Kf8 33.  Kh1 Bxg2+. Funny that I was watching Bxg2+ all the time, but in different context – if his queen leaves the first line. I also saw Bxg2, Rxg2, Qf3 in some lines, but his queen was coming to help. But in the this, last variation it leaves his bishop on e8 hanging, so I take it after all heavy pieces are exchanged and I have an endgame K+5p vs K+2P, which I would win of course even blitzing.

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