New Year, New Opponent

Round 1

I had never played against this person before, but I knew that he was an accomplished club player. I got White, being one of the top rated in a tournament where just about everyone that shows up on Wednesdays showed up.

At the beginning, I decided to play an open Sicilian only because I had noticed that he had lost to Mark in a Kalashnikov Sicilian as Black, but was worried that he might try to “dragonize” me instead, which is what began to take place. I steered for a Four Knights 8.NxNc6 instead of 8.Qd2 because I didn’t want to get into a Dragon, which is really “Black’s opening”, and I have faired quite poorly against it as White. So I chose to control the play and get the game into unfamiliar (to Black) channels.

This was not quite accurate play on part, but it had the intended results. I have to give Joseph credit as he spend quite a bit of time thinking about the exchange sac, he simply misplayed the continuation. Fruit likes the exchange sac, when played correctly.

For example 23.Bd2 is inaccurate and equalizing. I wasn’t calculating the complications except for superficially. 23.Qd2 is the winning move. I could have been a little more enterprising with 26.g4 or 26.Rd7. Instead, 26.Qd2 QxQ was rather lame, according to Fruit. Still, I could have opened up the game and perhaps then won a pawn.

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2 thoughts on “New Year, New Opponent

  1. You played a solid game and that was the decisive factor.
    He had to play exf4 instead of e4 and later Nb6 instead of Nb4.

    It looks like he had a meltdown in the end like Ivanchuk today, when he started to give up his pieces. 🙂

  2. Well, he certainly made it easy for me when complications rolled around. 😉 …Nb6 is an interesting/good suggestion. But sometimes, you provoke against the fighter that can’t back down and get expected results, happens often in chess. You are quite disciplined as a chessplayer.

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