Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Second chances

I played a interesting blitz game a week ago or so at ligthning speed and discovered once again that the attacker shoulkd not dispair when missing the right continution.

1.d4 d5 2.e4 dxe4 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.f3 exf3 5.Nxf3 e6
The Euwe defense

6.Bg5 Be7 7.Bd3 00 8.00 c5 9.Qe1
The alternative 9.dxc5 might be better

9...cxd4 10.Qh4
All according to the standard attacking plan

This move obvioulsy weakens black's position, but it is not easy for white to punish it. In fact, Houdini thinks it is the best move here

Is this better than Nxd4 ? None of the lines seem to offer a crushing combination ( see below )

Only move

12.Bxe7 Qxe7
12...Nxe7 is punished by 13.Nfg5

Bad - I wanted to keep the queens on the board, but this idea is loosing because of 13...f5 or even 13...f6

My opponent fails to see the refutation, which is not abnormal at this ligthning speed

14.g4 f6 15.Nh3 Ne3
Wrong once again, 15...hxg4 would have won

16.Nxf6+ Kh8 17.Nf4
black resigns. Bottomline, dont panic when missing the right move when playing a gambit in blitz - your opponent might loose track also !

After the game, I went to analyse this line, and I looked at 9.dxc5 a bit more in detail, discovering several great white moves, eg

a/ 9...Bxc5+ 10.Kh1
a1/ 10...h6 11.Qe1 !!! with equality
a2/ 10...Nbd7 11.Qe1 with a white advantage
a3/ 10...Nc6 11.Qe1 winning
a4/ 10...Be7 11.Qe1 equal

b/ 9...Nbd7 10.b4 with a tiny white advantage

c/ 9...h6 a killer move giving black the advantage, as black simplifies the game in all lines, eg 10.Bxf6
c1/ 10...Bxc5+ 11.Kh1 Qxf6 12.Ne4 Qe7 13.Nxc5 Qxc5 14.Qe2 equal
c2/ 10...Bxf6 11.Qe1
c21/ 11...Nd7 12.Na4 equal
c22/ 11...Qc7 12.Kh1 equal
c23/ 11...Be7 12.b4 equal

d/ 9...Nc6 10.Qe1 with equality

e/ 9...Qc7 10.Qe1 with equality

9.Qe1 is also promising in various lines, eg

f/ 9...cxd4 10.Qh4
f1/ 10...h6 11.Bxh6
a11/ 11...dxc3 12.Bxg7 Kxg7 13.Qg5+ Kh8 14.Qh6+ Kg8 15.Ng5 winning
a12/ 11...gxh6 12.Qxh6 winning
f2/ 10...h5 11.Ne4 winning
f3/ 10...Nbd7 11.Bxh7+ winning
f4/ 10...g6 11.Nxd4 seems a bit better than 11.Ne4
a41/ 11...Nd5 12.Nf3 equal
a42/ 11...Nbd7 12.Nf3 with a small white advantage
a43/ 11...e5 12.Nf3 with a small white advantage

g/ 9...h6 10.Bxf6 Bxf6 11.dxc5 returning to the line in c2/ above

h/ 9...Nbd7 10.Qh4 transposing to other Euwe lines

i/ 9...Nc6 10.Qh4 equal

j/ 9...Re8 10.dxc5 with a small white advantage

The choice between 9.Qe1 and 9.dxc5 is thus not easy - and often merge after black's best move 9...h6. I do prefer 9.Qe1 however, as it is more in line with the thematic Euwe lines.

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