Wednesdays July 2011 – Round 3

Round 3

I played James for the second time. He ruined my tournament a while back that kept me from serious prize money, and I know he is a good player since his rating is around mine. I knew that he likes to give me an isolated pawn, but that feeds in my like to get activity, so we both got what we wanted. I don’t know what is objectively best for Black, but I also know I could spend hours looking at a computers analysis of “theory” and get nowhere just as well.

21..Rf6 was a real howler, should have spent another half minute on that move I figured, but I guess I had already missed my best chance with 17..Rxf2 (double-check), courtesy of Fruit; not that I didn’t look at it for perhaps half a minute, but that is only enough time to say that I looked at it.

21..Qf7 is the move, and Black still has decent winning chances. 17..Rxf2 is only winning a pawn after 18..Qe3. A strong player I supposed would play such a saving move and then continue to work my clock at G/90. He had 51 minutes left at the end of the game – a higher rated player would probably not end up having not spent a lot more of this.

During the game I began to count on him getting caught up in his “strategical advantage”, whereas I might be ahead in piece development, and that is obviously what happened. It’s curious that even 18.e3 will lose a pawn after the tactical 18..Be7. Of course I wanted to play this, but the time to look at such a move is not as in place as much as it would be at G/2 or longer. But the game has already gotten weird with all the queen moves, so it’s no longer a normal game by this point, either.

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4 thoughts on “Wednesdays July 2011 – Round 3

  1. Congratulations, you got your sweet revenge. 🙂
    His exchange on e6 only better for you, since you get rid of isolated pawn, strengthen your center and get “f” line which proved to be important later.
    His Be3 had to be played after Nc3, it wouldn’t allow then that exchange on e3 which is good for you. Yeah, 21… Rf6 wasn’t good, giving him back all your advantage. His crucial mistake was 23. Rd8 instead of 23. Rd7, who exchanges the rooks when you can create a mate threat?
    After 23… Qxe2 he is lost.
    That type of position requires really good calculation and seeing threats, and it looks like you outdid him here.

  2. Thanks, RollingPawns! 🙂

    Actually, that ending was sort of a blitz based on feel, not much calculating at all other than for the obvious conclusion. That extra pawn is winning, or is a tactical obstacle for him to create the win by eating his queenside pawns, even had he played h4 and Kh2 in time. He thought his king would get to the pawn in time! Of course I didn’t tell him that that would be suicide to do so.

    got there late, so 9 1/2 minutes was already off my clock. At some point, I think he realized that all his move-thumping had lead him into a bind. Last two games I’ve been covering my face with my hands, just concentrating on the board. I don’t want to be distracted by them, but I also know that I end up looking at their best move for so long that all they need to do is read my face and the ones who read my face generally do find their best moves that way. But I heard a grunt from him, so I knew that he knew he was in a pickle.

    I think this game came down to him thinking strategy rather than MDLM 101, which is get some piece activity and look for threats, that’s really all I had to do. The one thing I focused on during this game was to remember my conclusions from each analyzed line. This is the thing I was most proud of, whether I had won or lost, I came to definite conclusions and remembered what they were.

    I’ll look at your suggestion when I go over this opening seriously, so that I have a better sense for when I next face him as Black. He really likes this strategic advantage stuff. He probably sensed that I had spent a long time trying to find a way of not playing …Be6. Perhaps if I had played it quickly as I had meant to, he would know not to take and to not play for clock times.

    The funny thing is when he beat me last time (I made a queen trade offer blunder, a simple one), he insisted that he was strategically better and all of this, and didn’t believe that my piece activity that more than compensated for this. I went for a queen trade because of time pressure, it was not warranted by the position itself. So this game was sort of a repeat of that discussion where I easily proved my point this time. With all of those captures he was simply developing my position, although it was equal, which is more than fine by me if an engine thinks I am equal as Black in a dynamic position.

  3. Spending less than half of the time was not serious. Almost all the people that I played with in the last tournament, even if they played fast in the opening, slowed down as soon as the position required and you know what their rating was. It’s good that you started to think as GM Kotov recommended, go once along every line and remember the result.

  4. hehe, some of these guys are butt-heads or meat-heads at G/90, they say afterward that they were just having fun. IOW, they will do stuff and not worry about their rating, they just want to see if they can grab some advantage. The 1950 rated kid I played last Thursday, he was using all his time and not taking me lightly at all as an opponent, even though he probably could have. I mean, it’s sort of ridiculous how he played to mate, and of course I blitzed out my replies faster than he made those moves. It’s sort of funny because the lessened time helped me out. I think he is better at 40/2, SD/1 so why he plays fast here is hard to understand.

    Thanks, RollingPawns! 🙂 Yes, I remembered to say “Okay, this line gives me the undefendable pawn, or knight getting pushed to ..b6 with a bad center, or such and such.” and I was also recognizing the candidate moves after I told myself those preliminary remarks. So I was quickly down two candidate moves, then able to weed out one of them, remembering why, and see that the other candidate move does not obviously lose.

    If pairings stay the same, I play Mark next week, he’s down to 1782, but was a hundred points higher not long before that. He’s at least 5 wins 3 losses against me. I’ll have White and probably play against his Najdorf Sicilian, which he has beaten me every time with, although lately he gets into insane time-trouble in the middle-game, and hate to say but that would be my biggest trump against him. Like on move 25 he had 2 minutes, even, against Paul who had 52 minutes.

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