After I waited for my opponent for about 15 minutes I asked TD if he is going to come. He said: “Yeah, he always comes, but he comes late, maybe to intimidate a bit”. I said: “But he is not Fisher” and calmed down. He came soon and we started to play. Last time we played he moved really fast and it kind of affected me. This time in the opening I played faster. He played e4 and I decided to rely again on my favorite Ruy Lopez. He exchanged on c6 and I played my pet Bronstein variation – 5… Qd6, I won a couple of games in it in the past. I saw that his development was slow and tried to get ahead. Computer thinks that after 14… g4 I had +1 advantage.

Then I got an idea to win his pawn by taking his knight on c4. Fritz thinks that it was better to play gxh2+ and h3. Suddenly I saw that after 19… Qxc4 he can play Rb4 with attack on “b” file and I didn’t like it. So I changed my mind and played c5. But I could hold the position – 19… Qxc4 20. Rb4 Qc5 21. Rab1 b6.

I lost the initiative at that moment and his attack started to develop. I overestimated the strength of it and thought that the only way to change the flow of events is to sacrifice exchange on f3. Interesting that Fritz considers it completely sound and giving +1 advantage to Black. I had to do it on move 30, but didn’t, luckily he didn’t take on h4. Fritz considers his Kg2 a big mistake, which I didn’t use playing Nf6 instead of Nf8 with idea of Ne6 and Nf4+. Nf8 doesn’t allow his queen to get on g5. Anyway, after he played f4 I saw that he planned to play e5 after exf4, but missed my check on c6. 35. Qf1 and 36. Rab2 were bad moves, he couldn’t decide what to do – defend or attack.

After winning a rook I was a piece up and the only problem was the time, it went down to two minutes and I played on 30 seconds increment. Fortunately it was simple enough position to win.

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