chess openings


It was a 5th round in the Thursday’s tournament and I got an old guy rated ~1450. I had a draw with him a long time ago, his rating was higher then. I got White and worried that he will play French again, really didn’t want to play against French that evening, but he chose Philidor defense. I didn’t have much OTB experience with it, but played it online quite a lot.

I knew that 18… Bxa4 was a mistake, computer confirms that. After 19.e5 I didn’t consider seriously 20. Qxb7 which was +2,  being obsessed with the attack in the center. Soon I realized that straight attack on the kingside wouldn’t work and tried to to block his knight maneuver.  We both missed 27… Nxf5.

After I played 30. Ra1 I got the idea of Bxd6 and was happy to see him playing 30… b6. Then the game was decided by 32. Qxd6.

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It was a last round and my opponent was a new, Russian-speaking guy, unrated, but his rating after the tournament should be about 2000. He replied to my Semi-Slav by 4. g3 and it was a line I didn’t know well.

His 12. Ng5 looked like a premature attack. The idea of getting my bishop to f7 was to play e5 of course, but I didn’t play it, having second thoughts about possible weakness of the pawn on e5. His 31. d5 looked strong to me and I spent a lot of time considering my replies and lost my half an hour advantage, but computer says it was equal.

After his 37. Rd3 I got worried about Re3 and possible attacks on 7th horizontal and got an idea about perpetual, it explains the title. So I played 37… Qe1+ which was a mistake and then played 38… Re8, which was a fatal mistake. The problem was I didn’t see move Rf3, completely defeating my idea. I could play instead 37… Rc8 perfectly holding the position.

So after a few moves it became clear that the game is lost and after I found myself in a hopeless rook endgame I resigned.

My opponent was an old guy, I played him a couple of times in the past and won. I had White and he played Sicilian, French variation. I was not inclined to play d4, so I played c3 instead.

His 5… Nc6 didn’t look right to me, I saw c4 right away and after some thinking played it. Then 9… b5 was really bad, I just had to see that I should take with the bishop, not knight, taking into account a possible queen check after knight’s exchange.

Computer thinks that 12. Bc4 was better then my 12. 0-0. Anyway he played soon 13… d6, opening lines for attack on his own king. After 14. exd6 he realized that and resigned, computer gives me about +5 in this position.

It was a first round in Monday’s tournament and my opponent was a young guy I played twice recently, blundering in the first game and drawing in the second. I excepted him to play Ruy Lopez again, but he played Evans gambit.  I went for a modern variation with Be7. Suddenly on move 7 he sacrificed a bishop. I didn’t remember seeing it in the book, but knew that I have to be careful.

On move 10 I expected him to play Nxd7+, but he chose Qf5+. Then computer expects him to play 12. Qxh5, it is still -3. After 12… d5 I was winning another piece, but I considered d5 only earlier. I tried to create some threats, when he defended I decided to exchange the queens. After 16… Qe4+ he resigned.

At home I tried to evaluate his sacrifice, he has some compensation, not full. Some shootouts, where White didn’t attack right away, but tried to use positionally the pawn majority in the center and the fact that Black king can’t castle ended up with a draw.

 

 

My opponent was a young man and I got White. He played French and our Tarrasch transformed into Rubinstein variation. I got advantage after his 9… Nb6 and started to develop an attack on the queenside. Computer prefers Rc3 on move 17 or 18.

Then I missed 21. Rxc7. I saw it, but didn’t realize that after 21… Kxc7 22. Qa7 Black king has nowhere to go. His exchange sacrifice was a mistake, it allowed the same rook sacrifice on c7. I again missed it and decided that queens exchange will be OK for me.

He started an active counter-play, but his 36… Bb6 was a mistake. His next move was a game-losing mistake and he resigned.

My opponent was an old guy, our score in the past was =1, -2. I got Black and played Semi-Slav. I didn’t quite like his 6. b3 though he would be OK after 6… Bb4 7. Bd2, but he played Bb2. I saw of course Qa5, but didn’t realize I could win a pawn after 8… Qa5 9. Rc1 Qxa2. Then I missed another opportunity by playing pre-move 10… Nxc3 instead of Ng4 winning “f” pawn. I saw Ng4 before playing Ndf6, but thought that he had Bg2 and O-O and after a3 forgot about it.

After 26. Bxd5 I spent quite some time, because I wanted of course to play exd5, but thought that he will occupy “e” line, so played cxd5 which I knew was worse. Actually I could play exd5, because he has to lose a tempo to play 27. f4, otherwise if 27. Rde1 I play 27.. f4 and if Re7 then Qh3 with advantage.

On move 32 I considered putting my rook on g3 with a purpose of sacrificing on g3, but didn’t see a forced win or even draw, so decided to play h5. Computer thinks that 36. Rg5 was better than Qg5 and was equal.

Then he suddenly blundered playing 39. Rg5. He had 45 minutes vs. my 25 and the only reason for the blunder, I think, was feeling under pressure. Though computer evaluates the position as equal after 39. Kf1, I would prefer to play Black here. Then after 40. Qxd4 he played Qc3.  I saw the check before that and certainly it looked very bad for him. After 42 … Rh3+ it was a mate in 2 and he resigned.

It was a second round and I got paired with a 1951 rated boy, never played him before. I got Black and responded to his 1. c4 with Semi-Slav. As soon as he played 10. a3 I knew that I have play c5, otherwise my bishop will be “bad”, I had it before. Soon I realized that he didn’t have pretenses to get an opening advantage, it calmed me down.

After 20 moves I noticed that there was a possibility of sacrifice on e3, but to my disappointment he played Bf3 and that from my point of view prevented the sacrifice. The thing is the line I would play – let’s say 21. Bd3 Ndxe3 22. fxe3 Nxe3 wasn’t giving me much advantage, the right move was 22… Bg5 with about -2.5. The same sacrifice was still playable after Bf3, but with a lesser effect.

Then he made a mistake by playing 33. Qc8. He could still hold it, probably, but then 37. Qxb5 was a crucial mistake. Instead of 38. Bc5 he had to give up the bishop and play Qf1. But instead of playing 38… Qb1+ 39. Qf1 Bh2+ 40. Kf2 Qc2+ 41. Qe2 Bg3+ 42. Kf3 e4+ with a win, I let him go with 38… Qf5.

I expected him to play 39. Qe2, which by the way was losing the same way as in the line above, but suddenly he played Qf1. The saving move was 39. e4, it was leading to a draw.

After winning the queen the game was over, he resigned one move before getting mated.

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