Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Budapest Spring Chess Festival 2013 part 2

After the disaster of round 4 it took me some time to settle down and play decently again. In round five I played fast and carelessly and was punished for it, losing from a winning position. In round six I played against a nice Iranian lady, and though I didn't play flawlessly, I did manage to play well enough to get back in the win column.

[Event "Budapest Spring Chess Festival"]
[Site "Budapest"]
[Date "2013.03.23"]
[Round "6"]
[White "Cross, Ted"]
[Black "Allahverdi, Maryam"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C50"]
[WhiteElo "2041"]
[BlackElo "1807"]
[Annotator "Cross,Ted"]
[PlyCount "111"]
[EventDate "2013.03.18"]
[EventType "swiss"]
[EventRounds "9"]
[EventCountry "HUN"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Bc4 Be7 5. c3 d3 6. Qb3 Na5 7. Bxf7+ Kf8 8. Qa4 Kxf7 9. Qxa5 d6 10. O-O
 This was the first tournament in which I attempted this opening, so I wasn't very familiar with the variations. Castling was my instinct more than anything, though I did look at the more correct 10. Qd5+ Be6 11. Qxd3 with a huge edge.
10... Nf6 11. Qb5 Re8 12. Qxd3 h6 13. Re1 Ng4 14. Bf4 Bf6 15. Nbd2 Ne5 16. Nxe5+?!
 I'm naturally possessive of my bishops, so it's normal that I would play this, but it's a mistake that lets most of my advantage dwindle away. Much better was simply 16. Bxe5 dxe5 17. Qe2.
16... dxe5 17. Qxd8 Rxd8 18. Be3 b5?!
This move gives white back the edge.
19. a4 c6 20. Red1 a6 21. axb5 cxb5 22. Nb3 Rxd1+ 23. Rxd1 Be7 24. Bc5
While my move isn't bad, it's 'bad' in the sense that allowing opposite colored bishops gives black too much hope to hold on, and I didn't need to allow that. Better was 24. Na5 Be6 25. Nc6 Bf6 26. Ra1 with a big advantage.
24... Be6 25. Bxe7 Bxb3 26. Rd7 Ke8 27. Rb7 Be6 28. Bd6 Bd7 29. Rb8+
 I wanted to reduce material, though again this isn't necessarily the wisest choice in an opposite colored bishop ending, even up two pawns. 29. Bxe5! Bc6 30. Rxg7 Bxe4 31. f3 Bd5 32. Rh7 and white is winning.
29... Rxb8 30. Bxb8 Kf7 31. Bxe5 Bc6 32. f3 g6 33. h4 h5 34. Kf2 Ke6 35. Bf4 a5 36. Bd2 a4 37. Ke3 Kf6 38. Kd4 Ke6 39. g3 Bd7 40. Bg5 Bc6 41. Bd8 Bd7 42. Bb6 Bc6 43. Ke3 Bd7 44. Kf4 Bc6 45. Bd4 Bd7 46. Kg5 Be8 47. g4 Bf7
Lots of maneuvering, since that's what the position dictates. I can be slightly inaccurate in places, because the position is one where I can pretty much do what I want, moving back and forth until I figure out the right plan of action. 47... hxg4 48. fxg4 Bf7 49. h5 gxh5 50. gxh5 Bg8 51. h6 Bh7 52. Kf4 Kd6 53. Bg7 Ke6 54. Ke3 Kd6 55. Kd4 Bg8 56. e5+ Kc6 57. Bf8 Kd7 58. Kc5 and white wins.
48. Kh6 Be8 49. gxh5 gxh5 50. f4 Kd6 51. f5 Ke7 52. Kg7 Bf7 53. e5 Be8 54. Bc5+ Kd7 55. Kf8 Kd8 56. Be7+ 1-0

With a couple hiccups in the tournament making it less than wonderful for me, I at least finished with three and a half out of four at the end, wrapping it up with this nice victory over a FIDE master (though admittedly one whose rating has taken a beating as he has aged).

[Event "Budapest Spring Chess Festival"]
[Site "Budapest"]
[Date "2013.03.27"]
[Round "9"]
[White "Cross, Ted"]
[Black "Letay, FM Gyula"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "B99"]
[WhiteElo "2041"]
[BlackElo "1967"]
[Annotator "Cross,Ted"]
[PlyCount "117"]
[EventDate "2013.03.18"]
[EventType "swiss"]
[EventRounds "9"]
[EventCountry "HUN"]

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Bg5 e6 7. f4 Nbd7 8. Qf3 Be7 9. O-O-O Qc7 10. g4 b5 11. Bxf6 gxf6 12. f5 Ne5 13. Qh3 b4
I haven't made any comments yet because all of this is a standard opening line, and one that I have played all my chess playing life. But this last move 13... b4 is only the second-most played variation here, far behind the standard 13... 0-0. My database shows white's winning percentage go from 47.5% after the castle move to 82% when b4 is played. That's a huge difference.
14. Nce2 Nc6 15. fxe6 fxe6 16. Qh5+ Kd8 17. Qf7 Nxd4 18. Nxd4 e5 19. Nf5
 There's nothing wrong with my move, though even stronger is 19. Qd5! Ra7 (19... Bb7 $2 20. Ne6+ Kc8 21. Nxc7 Bxd5 22. Nxd5) 20. Nc6+ and an easy win.
19... Bxf5 20. gxf5 Rc8 21. Bd3 a5 22. Rhg1

What a lovely position, at least from the standpoint of anyone who loves the Sicilian as white! Total domination of the white squares and the one open file. And though there are opposite colored bishops, white's is a good bishop while black's is clearly very bad.
22... Qc5 23. Rg7 Re8 24. Rdg1
I fell too much in love with that open file. While my position is still dominating, this move changes the evaluation from 'winning' to just a 'very large advantage'. The better human move would be 24. b3, while the best move is one only a computer could love: 24. Rd2! and black is simply stifled.
24... Kc7 25. Qe6?!
This move looks nice, and at the time I thought keeping the queens on the board was more dangerous for black, but it was the right time to trade them off. 25. Qc4! White still has a large advantage, though. It's actually pretty hard for white to mess this position up!
25... Kb6 26. R7g2 a4 27. Qd5?
And yet here I go and try to do just that! 
27... Qe3+?
Luckily for me my opponent thought the queen trade was bad for him! After 27... Qxd5 28. exd5 Bf8 29. Re1 Bh6+ 30. Kd1 white has lost all advantage.
28. Kb1 Rc5?!
Black could have kept damage to a minimum with 28... Qc5, though white retains an advantage after 29. Qe6 a3 30. Rd1.
29. Qf7 Rcc8 30. Rd1 Qc5 31. Rg7 a3 32. Qd5?!
Sigh. I'm really trying hard to mess things up on that d5 square. After the correct 32. Qb3! just try to find a plan for black.
32... axb2?
And black really, really doesn't want to trade queens and get back into the game! 32... Qxd5 33. exd5 h5 34. Rh7 and white's edge is minimal.
33. Qxc5+ dxc5 34. Bc4 h6?
Okay so white was already winning, but this move just overlooks the threats white has against black's pieces.
35. Rd7 Rc7 36. Rxc7 Kxc7 37. Bb5 Kd8 38. Bxe8 Kxe8 39. Rg6 c4 40. Kxb2 Kd7 41. c3 Kc6 42. Rxh6 Kc5 43. Rh7 Bd8 44. Rd7 bxc3+ 45. Kxc3
Black plays on in a hopeless position, hoping for a miracle. More accurate here was to give black's bishop no counterplay at all with 45. Kc2! Bb6 46. h4 Kc6 47. h5!
45... Ba5+ 46. Kc2 Be1 47. Rh7
Better here to stifle all counterplay with 47. Rd1! Bh4 48. Kc3!
47... Kd4 48. Rh6 Kxe4 49. Rxf6 Bh4 50. Rc6 Kd5
If 50... Kxf5 then 51. a4 wins easily.
51. Rh6 Bg5 52. Rg6 Bf4 53. h4 e4 54. f6 e3
If 54... Ke6 55. f7+ Kxf7 56. Rg4 and it's over.
55. f7 e2 56. f8=Q e1=N+
If 56... e1=Q 57. Qxf4 or better yet 57. Qf7+.
57. Kd1 Nd3 58. Qd8+ Ke4 59. Re6+ 1-0

It was nice to finish this tournament on a high note. I had no idea at the time that I wouldn't play again for a full year, in the next annual version of this same event.

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