Alex played 34.Qxf7?? with 8 seconds on my clock, and instead of playing the winning 34…Rc2, I played the losing 34…Rc1+. Stockfish scored the position as 0.0 after 33 moves. Lately, whenever Alex and I have had a decisive game, it’s been where he will decide to play for the win once I don’t have enough time to exploit his blunders, and that either works for him or it backfires.
The game was interesting, but the result was not. I actually had a more difficult time with managing my time, even though we both started with 1hr 50 minutes, and that is because the slower the time control, the slower the pace of the game, and then when you hit the time-control, the sudden change of pace is to give an exaggerated whiplash effect. A second time-control is far better than more time, and the increment is helpful too. IMHO, the biggest disappointment of 21st century chess has been to get rid of dual time-controls.
10…b6? 10…Qa5 is best.
16….Rc8? 16…Ba6! (If White plays f3 and Kf2, the f3 pawn will cut off that diagonal for White’s queen.
23….Rc4?! 23…Bc4 is best for trying to do something with those queenside pawns. My move gave him all sorts of opportunities for queenside counterplay, including trading the rook on c4.
30…Rg8? 30…Rg7 is rated by Stockfish as much better, but it’s hard to say why it’s considered to be _that_ much better.
I guess I should point out that Teah’s Saitek clock actually began to malfunction during this game. It was adding 17 seconds per move, then adding 7 seconds per move, and then it stopped adding time altogether, but I was still able to get the job done with a minute and a half on my clock, mostly because of the faster pace of a G/90 game than a G/2hr game.
Someone that doesn’t play a lot of chess might not understand “pace”. Here is a game where I am checkmating in under 1 minute (18.Qb7 mate):
In my game with Teah, she blundered with 28.Qf4?, which is I was hoping she would play, and banking on that as being a losing mistake, which it was. 28.Rg1 would have been 0.0
She did have a difficult decision at move 24.NxNf4! After 24.Ng3?, I was going to play 24…h5, followed by 25….g4, which is nearly or possibly just winning, although a computer will not see this right away, and I had to plug it in myself.
Here was Alex’s game: Alex vs Sam
Here is the variation I saw for him which wins 14.
a5 b5 15. Nxb5 axb5 16. a6 Bc6 17. Nf3 Qe8 18. Qc2 Be7 19. d5 exd5 20. Ra5 Ka8
21. e5 Nh5 22. Rxb5 Rb8 23. Rb7 Bxb7 24. Qxc7 Qf8 25. axb7+ Rxb7 26. Ra1+ Ba3
27. Qa5+ Kb8 28. Rxa3 Nf4 29. Ba7+ Kc8 30. Rc3+ Rc7 31. Qxc7#
21.e5 is not necessary, and Black can chose to sac the piece back in this line, as 21.Rxb5 could be played right away. I didn’t see this Ra5 idea, and accidentally glanced at the computer’s Qc2, but probably would have played it. Stockfish didn’t even list this Nxb5 sac, as I had to play it for the engine as I do with many moves, figuring “Hey, this can’t lose!” As I told Alex before I even plugged it in “This is the sort of ‘blunder’ that you want to make!”. Can’t suck too bad as a chessplayer, after all these games and years, if can still find this sort of continuation, so can’t take too much to heart every other silly blunder that determines games and ratings.