May 2011

This quote belongs to Mark Twain,  looks relevant describing my game yesterday. I played with this guy 3 months ago, so I had White and we played again the same Moscow variation of Sicilian, here is the game. As before, his d5 was premature and he lost a pawn, though in a different way. I saw that he loses it before he played d5. Then it became different, in previous game he lost a piece on move 26 due to some tactics, in this one he resisted much longer.

Interesting that 20. Rc3 was a best move, but also was a trap, if 20… Rxa2 21. Rxa2 Qxa2, then 22. Bxg5 and if Rxe2, then Rc8 with a mate. He said after the game that he saw it. I could win another pawn on move 32, but thought that after Qxb7 he will play Rb8 and will get “b” pawn back with some activity, but I didn’t see that I can play Rc8+ with rooks exchange and keep the pawn. I am not sure about all the lines Fritz gives starting from move 38 forcing rooks exchange, it could be perpetual. I didn’t want to go into queen endgame, so finally we went into the rook one.

I stopped writing moves at some point, what happened then is we exchanged pawns on the kingside and my king was able to join the “b” pawn. Finally with a little time left I realized that I have Lucena position. I gave a check to get his king separated by 2 verticals, and then moved my rook to the 5th row to build a bridge. I had probably less than 2 minutes  at that time, he – no more than 30 seconds. When he attacked my rook with the king I didn’t know what to do and felt that I am doing something wrong. I was, because the rook supposed to be on the 4th row. You can do it like I did too, but it’s more complicated and not an exercise for that little time that I had. While I thought how to rebuild my bridge his flag fell, I had 34 seconds.

So, it’s just a second time I have Lucena.  I screwed it up a couple of years ago, losing a pawn due to a simple tactics, now I couldn’t build the bridge. I was a bit ashamed, but what can I do now?  I went through it,  so third time should be a charm.

I played on Thursday with the guy, who had a strong attack in a game with me, but couldn’t finish it and I won after counterattack: ‎

This time it was reversed scenario. I had White, it was a Modern defense which transformed into some kind of Sicilian Dragon, here is the game. I finally managed to play a long planned f4 on move 25, didn’t like his f5, though Fritz says it’s OK, but his next move – Kf7 was really bad. I saw that after exchanges on f5 his kingside will not look good. Then after 31. Qh5 the game was in my hands.

I thought that there is something better than Qxf5, that his king will be smothered in the corner after Rg8, something like that.
Then it was another obvious move – Nxe7, but it seems me I thought that after Nxe7 Qxe7 I’ll let his pieces to defend 7th horizontal, and then I just thought that I will lose a piece after Re8, not seeing that rook on g3 defends it.
Instead of that I played Re3, to defend ?? the bishop and right away to my horror I saw the discovered attack – Bf6. He looked and looked and didn’t see it. After his Rcf8 I quickly played Qh5, though I could still take on e7.

It was a critical point, after that I didn’t see how I can attack and my play went downhill. He counterattacked in the center, then forced queens exchange. I didn’t find the best defense and lost a pawn, and then underestimating his passed pawn forced bishops exchange and went into a bad rook endgame.
He didn’t play precisely and I missed a couple of chances to get a draw, I didn’t have much time at that moment. I stopped writing the moves, but he just won both my pawns and then his king went to help his “a” pawn, at that moment I resigned.

That’s what would I do (though with the different purpose than Jesus) if somebody would tell on the move 10-12 of this game that I would lose it.

I was 200+ km out of the city the day before, didn’t sleep enough, was very busy at work all Monday and didn’t prepare at all, not even warmed up. It’s not to defend my loss, but to explain why, for example, all the game I thought that I play with 1650+ rated, and after the game found he was 1855. I mixed him up with another guy.

I had White, here is the game. He played Caro-Kann, I chose Fantasy variation again.
He missed Bxf7 combination, his king lost a right to castle and I thought I got a big advantage, even bigger according to Fritz. I saw 12. Be3, but decided that I can do without Qxb2 and following complications, wrong.
Then after a few inaccurate moves I lost almost all my advantage. On move 24 I saw “removing the defender” combination and went for it. I wasn’t sure 28. Qxe5 is OK, still played it and soon started to think that I made a decisive mistake and will lose a piece.  I didn’t see any of the lines Fritz gives to prove that it was alright.
The character of the game changed after I lost the piece, though he gave me quite a few chances to almost equalize. My mood wasn’t good, I suddenly felt fatigue and I got into the time trouble, he had a few minutes more. When I had less than a 2 minutes I missed a mate in 2.