Pawn-grabbing in the Scotch

Another G/15 example of why crime doesn’t pay.

Note, my blitz rating on FICS is 500 points lower than my standard rating. I simply don’t find the tactics at that pace, really no time to calculate anything is my observation.

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2 thoughts on “Pawn-grabbing in the Scotch

  1. You played well. I just yesterday looked at that line realizing that I don’t know how to play after 7… Ne5 8. Be2. So now I know why Black shouldn’t take on e4. I don’t quite like the whole line, it seems that black Queen doesn’t feel very comfortable even without taking on e4.

  2. Thanks, RollingPawns! πŸ™‚

    I only knew how to handle that position because it’s one of the very few that I looked up in a database to find the answer to that question. Bh5, attacking the queen on g6 looks odd, but in fact it’s virtually winning for White. Actually it’s irrelevant as …Qd3, Be2, …Qg6, but then Nb5 it seemed should win (decisively), going over the line with Crafty. If Black plays …Bd6 then the knights attack it and we get that funny position where the Bc8 is trapped by a d7 pawn again, after winning the pawn on d6.

    We both made tactical errors. I should have played c4, attacking the queen 1 move sooner …Qxc4, as Black could have played 0-0 and been not too bad off. Well, I played f4 a move after I should have played c4. Then one of the White knights jumps back into the center and Black is losing a Ne7 on the e-file.

    There is some dangerous stuff later for Black such as …Qh4, as my tournament game against that one 1700 level player showed (he missed it), but part of the problem was that I played Nbd2-b3, which was too slow, Nc4 is the critical move, attacking Black’s dark bishop and trading it off for the knight. Suddenly, Black’s position usually doesn’t work too well after that.

    I stuck with this opening because I loved all the nuances and seeming contradictions. Actually, instead of ..Qxd, …d5 is more interesting and I see that more. Off the top of my head, you may know how to handle that position better than I. πŸ˜‰

    One thing, if you ever want to play this opening for White, don’t let Black trade bishops on e3 where you get doubled e-pawns. I have lost every time to the lowest rated players because Black’s knights become active, have a lot of safe outposts, and the knight and queen combo usually wins that quickly, almost always a fork or double-attack that is unpreventable. It hasn’t happened to me in a very long time, but did a lot when I was “learning” this variation.

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