Tuesday, June 28, 2005


Small Hiatus

In case, any of y'all are wondering, I've been on a small, but rather forced hiatus from chess. First, I was busy studying for and taking the GMAT (a standardized test). Then, I was busy moving. Finally, I think my schedule will clear up enough to allow me to get some games in. I hope I haven't forgotten everything.

Thursday, June 09, 2005


The Unusual Feeling of Victory!

I’m back, baby! It was great to win again, against a 1900 player. The key difference is that this time control was 30/90’, G/30’ instead of between G/30-G/60. I had time to think about the position and candidate moves. What’s interesting about this closed Sicilian game is that it turns into a position that resembles the French defense. Not a bad pyschological plus though. Most Sicilian players wouldn't be comfortable in a French position

1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 e6 3. f4 a6 4. Nf3 b5 5. g3 Bb7 6. d3 Nf6 7. Bg2 d5 8. e5 Nd7 9. O-O Be7 10. d4 Nc6 11. Be3 Qc7 12. Nce2 Nb6 13. b3 c4 14. g4 I played this move to force a decision about which side he was going to castle. I felt my pieces were fluid enough to mount an attack on either side.

14...O-O-O?! Both a queenside and a kingside castle could be dangerous. Here, keeping the king in the center is probably best. 15. a4 g6 16. axb5 axb5 17. Nc3 b4 18. Nb5 Qd7 19. c3 bxc3 20. Nxc3 Bb4 21. Nb5 Na5 Here is a critical point and without proper black, white could find himself quickly loosing. 22. bxc4 Nbxc4

23. Qa4!! Bc6 Here 23…Nxe3 fails to 24. Qxb4 Nxf1 25. Qxa5 where Ne6+ or Rc1+ are devastating threats. 24. Qxb4 Bxb5 25. Rfc1 Kb7 26. Bf1 Ra8 27. Rxa5 Rxa5 28. Bxc4 Kb6 I liked how the bishop on e3 was hanging for fives moves! 29. Bd2 Rc8?? 30. Qxa5 1-0. Black blundered badly, but his game was rather lost anyway. Both Rha8 and Ra4 lose at least a piece after Qc5+.

The game in pgn:
1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 e6 3. f4 a6 4. Nf3 b5 5. g3 Bb7 6. d3 Nf6 7. Bg2 d5 8. e5 Nd7 9. O-O Be7 10. d4 Nc6 11. Be3 Qc7 12. Nce2 Nb6 13. b3 c4 14. g4 O-O-O 15. a4 g6 16. axb5 axb5 17. Nc3 b4 18. Nb5 Qd7 19. c3 bxc3 20. Nxc3 Bb4 21. Nb5 Na5 22. bxc4 Nbxc4 23. Qa4 Bc6 24. Qxb4 Bxb5 25. Rfc1 Kb7 26. Bf1 Ra8 27. Rxa5 Rxa5 28. Bxc4 Kb6 29. Bd2 Rc8 30. Qxa5

Tuesday, June 07, 2005


The Importance of Endgames

Although I made some good moves and some minor mistake, this game as white against a 1702 game to this position. The position after 48...Rd1. Can I win this game? In the limited time, I could not find a way to make progress.

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Bg5 Bb4 5. e5 h6 6. Be3 Ne4 7. Qg4 Nxc3 8. Bd2 Nxa2 9. Qxg7 Bxd2+ 10. Kxd2 Qg5 11. Qxg5 hxg5 12. Rxa2 Nd7 13. Bd3 c5 14. c3 cxd4 15. cxd4 Nb8 16. Nf3 g4 17. Ne1 Nc6 18. Nc2 Bd7 19. b4 Ne7 20. Ne3 Rg8 21. b5 Nc8 22. Be2 Nb6 23. Rc1 Nc4+ 24. Nxc4 dxc4 25. Bxc4 Rh8 26. Rh1 a6 27. h4 gxh3 28. gxh3 Ke7 29. bxa6 bxa6 30. Rxa6 Rxa6 31. Bxa6 Bc6 32. Rh2 Rh4 33. Kc3 Bf3 34. Bf1 f6 35. Bg2 Bxg2 36. Rxg2 Rh3 37. Rg3 Rh7 38. f4 fxe5 39. fxe5 Rf7 40. Kc4 Kd7 41. Ra3 Rf1 Ra7+ 42. Kc6 43. Ra6+ Kd7 44. Kb5 Rc1 45. Ra7+ Ke8 46. Ra4 Kd7 47. Rc4 Rb1 48. Kc5 Rd1 49. Rb4 Rc1 50. Kb5 Rd1 51. Kb6 Rd2 52. Kc5 Rc2

The other game, I was white and didn't play the middlegame well but I played the rook endgame well to give myself new life. Yet, I lost anyway. I can't say I had a ton of time left either. . I think I definitely have more chance for a draw here, than I did for a win in the first. I ended up not being able to stop the two connected passed pawns with my rook. There has to be theory regarding a rook vs 2 pawns. I'm black and the position is after 54. Rf8:

Anyway I think I even missed a win?! Perhaps allow the rook to blockade, and bring the king over to stop the pawns. 55….Rb6 56. Rb1 56. Rb1 Kd5 57. g4 Ke5 58. g5 Kf5 59. h4 Rb8 where you are threatening mate. 60. Rf1+ Ke6 61. Rb1 Kf7 62. Rf1+ Kg7 63. Rb1 Rb6. There is certainly other tries and I need to run it through Chessmaster.

1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4 Bf5 5. Ng3 Bg6 6. Nf3 Nd7 7. Bd3 Bxd3 8. Qxd3 e6 9. Bf4 Ngf6 10. O-O-O Nd5 11. Bg5 Qc7 12. Rhe1 h6 13. Bd2 O-O-O 14. c4 Nf4 15. Bxf4 Qxf4+ 16. Kb1 g6 17. Qe4 Qxe4 18. Nxe4 Nb6 19. b3 Bg7 20. Ne5 Rhf8 21. Kc2 Kc7 22. Nc5 Nc8 23. Nxf7 Rxf7 24. Nxe6+ Kd7 25. Nxd8 Kxd8 26. d5 cxd5 27. Rxd5 Kc7 28. f3 Nd6 29. Re6 Nf5 30. Kd3 Rf6 31. Rxf5 Rxe6 32. Rf7+ Kc6 33. Rxg7 g5 34. Kd2 a6 35. Rf7 b5 36. cxb5 axb5 37. g3 b4 38. f4 gxf4 39. Rxf4 Kb5 40. Kd3 Rd6+ 41. Rd4 Ra6 42. Ke3 Rxa2 43. h3 Rg2 44. Kf3 Rb2 45. Rd5+ Kc6 46. Rd3 Rb1 47. Kg4 Rc1 48. Kh5 Rc3 49. Rd4 Rxb3 50. Rg4 Kc5 51. Kxh6 Rd3 52. Rg8 Rd6+ 53. Kh5 b3 54. Rf8 b2 55. Rf1 Kb4 56. g4 Ka3 57. g5 Ka2 58. g6 b1Q 59. Rxb1 Kxb1

Monday, June 06, 2005


Hemorraging Rating Points

My last month of chess has been dismal. My last 16 games, I'm +5 -8 =3 against an average rating of 1711. My rating has slipped from 1904 to an expected 1817. So what is going on? I think it's important to analyse why I'm getting hammered.
  1. Too much chess? I've played on 7 different occasions in the last 6 weeks, totalling the 16 games. Before that, it was about every other week.
  2. Short time controls. Of those 16 games, 4 were G/30, which I was +1 -3 against a 1694 average rating.
  3. Opening Shortfalls. Of the 16 games, I was on the black side of a Caro-Kann 9 times, +2 -5 =2 against a 1738 average rating. Worse yet, playing the classical variation I'm =2 -4 against 1848 average rated opposition. I got the feeling that I don't know what I'm doing in the Caro-Kann! Time to study it I guess.

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