I had recently 3 games where it was a final theme. The difference is that in two games my opponents had it, but decided to play for a win and in third game it was my only chance and I did it.

Game 1 – I played with a boy rated 2004. I had White and chose rather unusual to me Ruy Lopez with d3, c3. He played an early f5, my h4 was not an exact move. After move 30 I liked my position more.

Fritz says I could play Rd5 two moves earlier. 41. Qxf3 created a weak pawn on g4, gxf3 was better. Then I make a serious blunder playing 53. Qg4. He didn’t use it and after 55. Rxa2 it was a draw by perpetual. 63… Qg2+ was a decisive mistake, I won in a few moves.

Game 2 – my opponent, young man, came 54 minutes late, when I was sure there will be no game, the control was 90’/G + 30”/move.     I lost to him 3 times with White in Sicilian, Moscow variation, so I decided  to play Closed Sicilian. We both played fast, kind of like a rapid game. He castled queenside and we both developed attacks. I made a mistake on move 20 not playing d5 because I overestimated his threat to take on h2 – 20. d5 Qe3+ 21. Kf1 Rxh2. I didn’t see 22. Rxb7+ at that moment. But later when I played 22. d5 I already saw that if he plays Bh3 I have a perpetual. He did exactly that and I sacrificed a rook on b7 with a draw.

Game 3 – my opponent was a boy, I had Black and we played Ruy Lopez. I decided to go for an early d5 and miscalculated, losing a pawn as a result. I expected him to exchange queens on move 30 and my chances in the rook endgame looked very bleak to me. He didn’t do that and then after I played Qa3, he didn’t see my queen’s  potential. After 37. Kf1 I had about 0.5 advantage, but probably would go for a perpetual, because I had about 5 minutes vs. his 30.

Suddenly he played 37. Kh3 and I saw Rg5 almost right away. He realized that he made a crucial mistake and resigned.