Well, I wasn’t paired with Anthea after all. Instead, I was paired against Rhett.
I played Bd2, then figured “Oh yeah, he’ll win the b2 pawn with ..Qb6…good!” Sure enough, it exceeded my wildest expectations. At one point he had made six queen moves in a row, and I had 8 pieces developed (counting 0-0) to his one piece Nb6.
Well, I offered up my Ng5 and was hoping he’d take it because I had calculated a mate in 8 with exf7+..Kxf7, Ne5+ Kg8, fxg Be6, g6 and now I have Nf7 and if BxN, gxN+ Kh7, then I can probably get in a Qg6 mate. I haven’t looked at this with Fruit, this is simply what I saw OTB, but yes of course it is winning. I am surprised that he was surprised, and yet he smartly bailed out with …Bxe6+.
Then, I dumbly immediately captured on e6 with Qxe6 because I was “tired of all this thinking already”, tired from my previous combo which he didn’t go for. Simply Ne5, Bg6+ and Nf7 forking, winning the rook and it would have been game over. After I captured with the queen, I was like “That was a dumb move, I should have checked with the bishop, or looked for the right way to finish.”
I didn’t even see his ..Qf6, trading queens (I should though, she is only worth 3 minor pieces!), and thought to myself “I will have to win this one all over again. I am down a pawn, but he is stuck for a move, more or less.” I figured that ..a5 looked like a good try for him, but instead he gave me his b7 pawn, and then tried to trap my rook. I played …Na5 protecting the Rb7, but he can’t play Nc4 removing the Na5 defender because I will mate him, so he had to play ..e6 first.
Eventually, we both got into a mad time-scramble and I put my bishop en-prise with 2 minutes and 36 seconds remaining. He had 3 1/2 minutes. From the time that I put my bishop en-prise, to the point at which I checkmated him, I did all of that in approximately 30 seconds (with 5 second delay), because I still had over 2 minutes left at the end of the game, and he had just a couple of seconds left. My friend Alex was impressed that I dropped a piece and still won, and Rhett thought he needs to start practicing at blitz now. I told him forget it, analyze your games instead, because we were both moving so fast that neither of us was thinking, we were both making moves.
I told him after the game that I should have played Kh1 instead of Kf1 there (true), and that had he played ..Rf8 in that time scramble, activating it, he should have won.
BTW, I did intend with 32.c3 Nf5 to either win a piece or mate after Bh6+ followed by Nb7+. c3 was to open up c6 for my knight, but the time-pressure was so great that I couldn’t remember it after he played ..g5 and I played c3, and I wasn’t trusting that he hadn’t somehow prevented it, even though it is all checks and cannot be stopped. I played Nb3 and then blundered my piece within a manner of seconds. The surprising thing for me is how I ended up with so little time, as if it didn’t seem that I was taking up nearly that much time, and as if he were spending unbelievable amounts of time, and yet it was the other way around, I had 10 minutes to his 55 at one point.
It’s funny how before the person makes there move you are going “Yeah, that’s right buddy, c3 then Nf5 and I win a piece.” Then after the move it’s like “Oh no, he played Nf5, I must have miscalculated something and need to play a safe move now to show that I am still better.” Completely irrational, but I find that this is sort of a normal reaction (because my plan didn’t factor in his next move ..g5, but this changed nothing). The only thing is that when you have time, you win the piece, and when you don’t then thinking sort of ends with that irrational thought. Not only that, but because of the fight-or-flight of time-pressure I suddenly couldn’t remember the line! (yet desperately tried to for a few seconds). That sort of survival pressure is so great that I completely forgot about it after the game and didn’t remember until now when Fruit pointed out. It’s as if I had a blackout during the game, induced by time-pressure.
Another tactic I miscalculated is 26.RxNb6 axR, 27.Ne5 Rc7, 28.Rxc8+ Rc8 and now I missed the tempo-gaining zwischenzug 29.Nf7+ Kc7, 30.RxR KxR, 31.NxR. I had only seen 29.RxR KxR, 30.Nf7 Rg8 (but White can still win that rook with 31.Bh7!).
19.Ne5! instead of Re1 would have been my blitz move, but I spent a lot of time and energy looking at a lot of lines, but not deeply enough.
Back to 1800! (live-rating is probably around 1804) 🙂
I should say that I got lot of tactics training out of this game. This is why I say I don’t need blitz. I get tactics study from game-analysis, which is what speeds up my blitz play. Blitz play in and of itself, is just the art of making safe moves quickly. The rest of it you get from studying tactics, combinations, and endgames.