Monday, January 9, 2017

2017 2nd Smokey Mountain Open Round 3 Neil Deshpande, 1854 - Anton Taylor, 1895 Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch (by transposition from Panov-Botvinnik Attack)(D40)

Neil Deshpande, 1854 - Anton Taylor, 1895 
Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch 
(by transposition from Panov-Botvinnik Attack)(D40)

1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 My opponent thought for a bit too long in this moment. Every white player knows exactly what he is going to play in this position. He knows which system he plans to use and executes it quickly to save time. But here my young junior opponent didn't do that. He thought too long and it was a tell. His hand hovered a fraction of a second and he makes the next few moves, 3. exd5 cxd5 4. c4 Nf6 5. Nc3 As we exchanged these book moves I remembered an important detail. During the previous round when I had been crushed in the miniature by the Panov-Botvinnik my opponent in this round was sitting at the very next board to mine. He had seen everything and wanted to make quick work of me. My faith in the Caro-Kann had been shaken but more specifically my faith in the Bg5 variations. Sooo ... I follow a different path. 5. ... e6 6. Nf3 Nc6 Bb4 is a more common move in this position and gives it a Nimzo-Indian flavor. It is awkward to know that you will find ideas for plans in a variation of the Caro-Kann by studying the Nimzo-Indian but I think that's chess. everything is related. 7. Bd3 Be7 8. O-O O-O 9. Bg5 b6 This move is interesting to me. There is no good way to develop the light-squared bishop but this is a step in solving the problem while also helping control c5. 10. a3 dxc4 11. Bxc4 Na5
This move has been played at a reasonably high level but I am not convinced that it has a real purpose or is coming at the right time. The reason to play the move is to help seize control of the d5  square by forcing the Bishop to leave it. However, if that square was so important to control then why concede by making the pawn trade? The two moves don't work so well with each other. Simply Bb7 at this moment should have been fine. 12. Bd3 Bb7 13. Be2 Bc2 makes more sense and the bishop will have more influence. 13. ... Rc8 14. Ne5 h6 15. Bh4 Nd5 16. Bxe7 Nxe7 17. Qd3 Nac6 18. Rad1 Qc7 19. Qg3??
I had not analyzed this move but Komodo equated it with an immedately losing position. My reply is the powerful response. 19. ... Nf5 20. Qf4 Nfxd4 21. Rxd4 Nxd4?? Up until this move I was onto the winning idea ... just winning a free pawn and having better piece activity. However, Nxe5 was the correct path. The text just leads to a losing position since the minor pieces areso well coordinated. 22. Qxd4 Rfd8 23. Qe3 f6 24. Ng4 h5?? An even worse mistake that sinks black further into the mire and makes his opponent's pieces more active than they were before. 25. Qxe6+ Qf7 26. Qxf7+ Kxf7 27. Ne3 g6 28. Re1 Rd2 29. Nb5 a6 30. Nc4 Rcd8 31. Nxd2 Rxd2 32. Bc4+ Kf8 33. Nc7 b5 34. Ne6+ Kg8 35. Nc5+ bxc4 36. Nxb7 Rxb2 37. Nd6 c3 38. Nc4 Rb3 39. Ne3 Rxa3 40. g3 Kf7 I have been playing on in a completely lost position trying to drum up complications and here I have it. Two pawns for a Knight could provide enough complications to justify staying in the struggle. Before this round I had determined to "stop the bleeding" and so in a completely lost position I play for the win. 41. Kg2 Rb3 42. Ra1 Rb6 43. Nd5 Rc6 44. Rc1 Ke6 The only way to win is to get the active king and pawn to counter the extra piece. White's plan should be to accept this trade by giving the piece back and mopping up Black's other pawns when Black cannot return his king and rook fast enough to save the game. 45. Nxc3 a5 46. Re1+ Kd6 47. Re3 Kc5 48. Re4 Kb6 49. Ne2 f5 50. Re8 Kc5 51. Kf3 Ra6 52. Ke3 a4 53. Nd4 a3 54. Re5+? Here is where White really goes wrong. His king's lack of activity will lead to Black's "equality" ... when you are completely lost and then you get equality it is often not so far off to get a winning edge. 54. ... Kc4 55. Nc2 Kb3 56. Kd2 a2 57. Re3+? Once more the rook moves to the wrong place and gives a useless check that does not prevent Black's plan. 57. ... Kb2 58. Rc3?? This is the real losing move. 
58. ... Rd6+! 59. Rd3 Rc6 60. Na1 Kxa1 61. Rb3 Rf6 62. Rb4 g5 63. Kc2 Rc6+ 64. Kb3 Rc1 Here I commit an innaccuracy. Kb1 is the quicker path to decide matters. 65. Rd4 Kb1 66. Rd2 My opponent made this move and then offered me a draw. I could only frown and decline. Had he offered me a draw earlier I would have definitely taken it. The win for Black from here is easy. 66. ... a1=Q 67. Kb4 Qc3+ 68. Ka4 Qxd2 69. Kb5 Rc3 70. Ka4 Qb2 71. f3  0-1

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