August 2011

I realized almost right away that my opponent will  not come,  eventually I got paired with another one, girl 14 years old. She is from Colombia, her FIDE rating is 1900+, CFC provisional rating was the same, but dropped to 1711 after not successful play in Canadian Open. Her father is a master.

I got Black and as with her brother, with whom I played about 3 months ago, we got Scotch Gambit again, the same Dubois-Reti defense ( 4… Nf6) and almost the same line, here is the game.

Things went well in the first game. But there was a difference in the class,  she didn’t take my knight on g5, as her brother and it made my defense more difficult. I had to play 12… Ne4, but I thought about Nd2 exchanging my knight and then f5 and e6, though I would have enough time to play c5. The last chance to stay equal was to play 13… Ng5, not allowing Bh6 in the future. I was too optimistic about taking on f6, expecting only 15… gxf6 16. exf6 Bxf6 17. dxc5.  I realized right away after Bh6 that things are bad.

She was playing embarrassingly fast, I had 30 minutes less. Fritz says 20. Be6 was too passive. Interesting, that I thought that Bg6, Qf5 will provide enough defense and in the end even started to think that I have a chance to win.  She even slowed down. Then suddenly she took on h7. I completely didn’t see it. Funny, that I looked all the time at Qxh7, but only with the purpose of rook mating on h7. Yes, mate with a knight was a pattern that I didn’t know, too bad I had to learn it this way.

My rating after 3 losses in this tournament will go down by about 45 points, it’s a 3/4 of what I earned at Canadian Open (in 9 games!) . It’s almost like I wish I wouldn’t  play, but the only way to learn is to play, not to sit and look at your past success.

My opponent yesterday was a young man, an expert, didn’t play officially for quite a few years.  I had Black and it was a first time I played against Bird’s opening, here is a game.  I had a pretty vague idea how to play and my a6 wasn’t a good move, Bd7 was better. It was like some kind of Rossolimo, that I like to play, was played against me.

After 12. Qg3 I decided that I can get under attack and have to do something to intercept the initiative. I decided to play c4, opening the play for my bishops, and in case 13. dxc4 dxc4 14. Nxc4 Bxc4 15. bxc4 his pawn wasn’t worth much. I saw that he can play Ne4, but it looked like Be7 was enough for defense. Only after he played it, I realized that there is a move Rd1, after which I am in a big trouble. I found eventually Ne8 and f6, but after f6 I saw that he has Ba3. I gave up the queen for the rook and bishop, still decided to fight until the bitter end.

I had a feeling that he is not quite sure what to do, he spent a lot of time thinking. When I started to believe that I can get out of it, I lost an “a” pawn.  It was a big setback. I tried to build a fortress, he started to move his king to help advance his “b” pawn. He had less time and despite of the 30 seconds increment he got less than 10 minutes, I had I few minutes more. I had a hope that he can make mistake in the time trouble. The irony is that when he actually did it, blundering the “b” pawn, I didn’t see it. He had about 5 minutes, I had about 7. Then I decided to attack his queen using the fact that his knight was pinned. As soon as I put my bishop on a6, I realized with a horror, that my bishop is not defended and I just lose it. After another move I resigned.