I played two rated games tonight

In the first game, I was Black against Sai the little Indian kid. Second time I have played him. I figured that I should have played ..Bc5 or ..Bb4, but my usual is to play the timid ..Be7 there, and I actually have nice results with it.

At the end of the game I played ..b6, and it wasn’t to win his Ba7, as he erroneously thought, it was to block his bishop out of play. Play could have continued 23. c5 (to rescue the bishop) Bxc5, 24. NxBc5 RxNd2, 25.Nxe4 Rxb2, 26.Rc1 Rf4 and Black has a mating attack.

Since Sai and I finished early, and Anthea’s opponent didn’t show, I got to play another rated game with Anthea.

In the second game (G/60), I was Black against Anthea. I respect her ability to play White in this Colle opening as she is knowledgeable on how to play it as White. Interestingly enough, the game speaks for itself more than I had realized.

Improvements that I could have made as Black. I thought that 7..Bd6 was better than 7..c5, but I was getting a little creative. The one move that I completely missed that I wish I had back was on move nine, I could have played 9…0-0 instead of 9…dxe, not realizing that getting out of the pin by castling means she can’t push with 10.e5, and that really killed all of my winning chances right there, if I were to have had any.

I could have played for the win with 43…cxd, and almost did. Believe me, that was what I spent my time looking at and it looked great, but I wanted to ensure the draw in the time-scramble. I checked it with Crafty, and although it is still a draw (as I suspected), White has to walk a fine line to draw it, and not try any funny business, but she was well composed in any case.

I have been in very similar pawn formations as Black and White nearly always won by going after the c5 pawn, or simply get Black to get all bunched up defending it and then exploit the immobility or dis-coordination of Black’s pieces. Crafty is not seeing it, interestingly. I knew from experience that the position is deeper than it looks and that White should play purposefully. So when I got my chances to equalize, I dutifully jumped on them.

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8 thoughts on “I played two rated games tonight

  1. I only looked at game one (no time to look at game two, that is for a later time).
    After you throw open the game with d5 your opponent didn’t know what to do anymore, atleast it looked that way to me. Which made it an easy win for you.

    I guess your opponent has such a low rating because he is good in closed positions, easily to manouvre the pieces around, not really threats he has to worry about. Once there are tactics and active chess involved he lossess his head in the complications and blunders pieces or suffers big disadvantages by overlooking positional moves that gives his opponent more space or and easy to attack point.

    But we all started our chess career that way. Then we gradually improved to the level we are now. Even now we blunder pieces, but much less. I hope, by time, Sai will also improve, since him playing tournaments already shows he loves chess.

  2. In the post-mortem, I was playing quickly and Sai found a few wins for White. So yes, while he may be quite green as a chessplayer, he can win material in the right way, and avoid winning material to win an endgame. Don’t ever blitz with kids, I guess, unless one has to.

    His dad saw me having a rough go of it in the post-mortem and said to his son “Why did you resign?” Which is funny because Sai has a habit of resigning too early. Our last game he resigned before he had even lost any material, and he definitely should have played on in this game as well.

    His Nc3-b1 move was simply losing in my eyes, although I suppose it wasn’t in reality. I saw that I could either work off the pin as I did, or try to play …f4 to win the bishop on e3. I saw that he could have tried Qb3..Rad8, QxQ RxQ, Nd2 and he is only down the one pawn. My natural reaction was not to take the pawn on d3 because I didn’t want to come out of it with only a pawn when I thought that ..e4 or ..f4 promised more, so I spent most of my time not looking at Qxd3. But after ..Qxd3, it does at least win a rather decisive advantage, and …Ne1 fails to …QxR+, KxR BxQ, and Nxe5 fails to …BxQ, NxQ Be2 (fork) winning the exchange.

    I could have not taken the pawn with 13..Qd6 (13..Qd7? Nxe5), 14.Nb3 b6, 15.c5 Qd5 and it’s still a win, probably a quicker win, too, but why complicate when one doesn’t have to or feel the need to, in this case? It’s funny though, to a kid they are probably thinking “Doh! I dropped my stupid pawn, why are they taking so long to take it?”

    I had about 63 minutes on my clock when this game ended, and I was glad to have the chance to play another game. I would usually want to play a second game after a quick first game.

    Chesstiger, you described his situation in that game to a T, or exactly IOW. I visualized this game in my head enough not to blunder, but still came close. When I just look at the board in a middlegame, my board is so big that I can look at one sector of it and miss a hanging piece in another sector. When I keep the game in my head, the possibility of dropping anything becomes remote, and it also drastically cuts down on visual errors. I’ve learned to use the board as a reference point. Although when blitzing endgames, one only has time to look at the board usually, for example, although when I played …Nb8 in game two, that one sort of came from my head, not just by looking at the board.

    To keep the game in one’s head, don’t look at the board so much. One can look up, to the side, or even at the board without looking at the board. If one simply analyzes by looking at the board all kind of visual fluxuations can happen due to looking at the current and other retained intermediate positions that one is holding onto “with their eyes”.

    They eyes can wear out, and already are when tired. Plus, now a person’s eyes depend on looking the board correctly, the shape of the pieces, squares, lighting, and most importantly the “3-D ness” of the board. 3-D is too much textural information. When you play in your head, it’s 2-D, the extra dimension is a bunch of bit-mapped data which only makes it much harder to analyze and easier to miss things. If I created a 3-D image of a position, a lot of pieces would overshadow smaller pieces, such as a rook, that makes it harder to visually notice tactics because the physical separation of pieces by sight can become so small.

    Getting back to game 1, when I played 20…Nc6e5 that was a true sac of the a7 pawn, in my mind. Yes, I intentionally played it to knock his bishop out of play so that I could get to his king more easily. That is something that someone at his level is not going to easily pick up on. They will think that either I blundered or their piece is trapped, most likely.

    Even Crafty doesn’t take the pawn on a7, but rather replies Bd4. Crafty liked my move the same as it’s own move of 20…Bb4.

  3. The first game looks easy, I liked 12… f5 and 20…Nc6e5.
    The play in the second game looks equal and after 15 moves already somewhat drawish.
    I want to run it through Fritz and will post soon again.
    Solid play and good result!

  4. Fritz made just one remark – instead of 10… dxe4 [0.33] you could play 10…. O-O 11. exd5 exd5 12. Qc2 Re8 13. b3 Qc7 14. Bb2 Ne5 15. Nxe5 Rxe5 [-0.93].
    In the end you have 0.21 advantage, so it’s a draw.

  5. Thanks, RollingPawns! 🙂

    I know, solid play for a change, right? I guess I’ve been trying to prove that I _can_ play a solid game, since I never seem to get one of those, and don’t play as such on the clock. My last two games and online, I’ve been emphasizing the clock more. So at least now I know where it hurts me (cost me some wins, moving too fast – slow down in a “won” position!!), but I also have a better sense of the need to move now.

    Right, taking on e4 was simply in my head too much way before she played it. Crafty even likes scenarios with pushing …c4, hitting the d3 bishop, and Black can get a big edge. I released the pressure for White too much. Normally, one does not think exchanges are helping White all that much, but White is too cramped in the Colle.

  6. Here is a game that I played today on FICS. It is more old-school. This is how I used to play a lot, and I just remembered how much more possible it is at G/15 10. Pure G/15 features those acts of either demolition or clock blunder losses.

    http://ficsgames.com/cgi-bin/show.cgi?ID=272945888;action=show

    This game should have ended in a draw, though. The win was 10…e4, followed by 11…Nd4 (hard to find idea), 12…e3, 13…Nxe2 14.RxNe2 and then 14…Bxe3+ will fork the king and Ng5, exploiting the pin on the queen so no RxNe2.

    A “normal” game to wipe away that abberation:
    http://ficsgames.com/cgi-bin/show.cgi?ID=272985603;action=show

  7. Game two, it looked, for me, as if white tried to attack while black had no problem defending his position but did not more then that.
    I dont say it wasn’t a good game, just that it wasn’t an eventfull game that i know you can play.

    Maybe you must look for a more active reply to the Colle system since i think your strenght is more in complex, active, positions where you can let your pieces run wild and make threats to your opponent.

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