[Event "?"] [Site "?"] [Date "2021.01.22"] [Round "?"] [White "White"] [Black "Black"] [Result "*"] [ECO "B22"] [WhiteElo "175"] [BlackElo "185"] [Annotator "mactobo"] [PlyCount "33"] [EventDate "2020.03.28"] {[%evp 0,11,61,25,46,66,52,31,44,-4,14,18,25,21]} 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. c3 Nf6 {Black could win a pawn by playing dxc3 though this gives White some initiative - would you take the pawn?} 5. e5 Nd5 6. cxd4 {An alternative idea is to play Qxd4 - so which capture would you make and why?} d6 7. Bb5+ { Not the most popular choice in the position but it has been played by a few players with a rating over 2400.} Bd7 8. Bxd7+ Qxd7 9. O-O Nc6 10. Bd2 Be7 11. Nc3 Nxc3 12. Bxc3 dxe5 13. Nxe5 Nxe5 14. dxe5 Qxd1 15. Rfxd1 Rd8 16. Rxd8+ Kxd8 17. Rd1+ {Not the most exciting game, I hear you say, so what's your evaluation of the position? Is it time to agree a draw and head for the bar? If there is to be a winner, who's the more likely candidate?} * [Event "Herts League"] [Site "?"] [Date "2019.12.10"] [Round "?"] [White "Abrams, J."] [Black "Byway, Paul"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "B22"] [WhiteElo "175"] [BlackElo "183"] [Annotator "Byway P & mactobo"] [PlyCount "76"] [EventDate "2020.03.28"] {[%evp 0,13,30,22,57,48,48,48,48,24,40,45,38,38,27,29]} 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. c3 {PB: As I told a friend who played the Blackmar-Diemer Gambit - "I think it's unsound, but I'm not going to try to prove it. I'll play something more to my taste". mactobo: White offers a pawn for a lasting initiative but Black starts from a solid position so the burden of proof sits with White} Nf6 5. e5 Nd5 6. cxd4 d6 7. Bb5+ {PB: Striking and inexplicable from a reasonable player. I must assume he hopes to exchange off to a draw but this is how not to do it. This structure calls for a K-side attack for which the kings bishop is a top trump. mactobo: The move is certainly less ambitious than a number of alternatives and White loses some control of the white squares - Bc4, Nc3 and a3 are more in keeping with White's plan for active piece play.} Bd7 8. Bxd7+ Qxd7 {PB: Also Nxd7 is worth a thought, but a good rule of thumb is: Q on opposite colur to remaining B. mactobo: I think I would recapture with the knight!} 9. O-O Nc6 10. Bd2 {PB: White doesn't like 10. Nc3 Nxc3 11. bxc3 dxe5 12.Nxe5 Nxe5 13. dxe5 Qxd1 with a bad bishop and wrecked pawns.} Be7 11. Nc3 Nxc3 12. Bxc3 dxe5 {mactobo: I think 12.... d5 gives Black a better opportunity to play for a win} 13. Nxe5 Nxe5 14. dxe5 Qxd1 15. Rfxd1 Rd8 16. Rxd8+ Kxd8 17. Rd1+ Kc7 $1 {PB: Does White think things are going well? ....Kc7 is already thinking of Kd5 and wouldn't have been played with more pieces on the board. mactobo: Paul improves on Kc8 played in a game between two FIDE masters in 2016, but the position is still even} 18. Kf1 { mactobo: An understandable reaction but White should play to keep the rooks on with Rc1 or Rd4} Rd8 19. Rxd8 Bxd8 20. Ba5+ $2 {mactobo: White shoudn't waste time - Ke2 must be played} b6 21. Bb4 Kc6 22. Bd6 Kd5 {PB: Black is much, much better; possibly even winning. Here I should have spent more time mapping out the winning plan. The rest is not optimal.} 23. Ke2 b5 {PB: To bring the B into play. Kd4 may be good.} 24. Kd3 g5 $1 {PB: To prevent f4; if 25.g3 then Black plays g4! mactobo: An excellent move, preventing White from solidifying his pawn on e5.} 25. b3 Bb6 26. f3 Bd4 27. Be7 Bxe5 28. Bxg5 Bxh2 29. Be3 a6 30. g4 f5 {PB: He must give me a passed pawn or put one on a black square.} 31. gxf5 exf5 32. Kc3 h5 {PB: My B can guide the P past h4 so his K is going the wrong way.} 33. Bf2 f4 34. Kb4 Bg3 35. Bg1 Kc6 {PB: There's nothing White can do.} 36. Ka5 Kb7 37. a4 bxa4 38. Kxa4 {PB If 38. bxa4 then Be1 mate would have been nice!} h4 {Resigns} 0-1