[Event "Groningen Chess Festival"] [Site "Groningen"] [Date "2017.12.22"] [Round "1"] [White "Ernst, Sipke"] [Black "Wedda, Dries"] [Result "1-0"] [WhiteElo "2532"] [BlackElo "2157"] [Annotator "Van Delft"] [PlyCount "67"] [EventDate "2017.??.??"] {Many years later, Sipke played a fascinating positional queen sacrifice himself.} 1. Nf3 c5 2. c4 {Symmetrical English.} Nc6 3. g3 g6 4. Bg2 Bg7 5. O-O d6 6. Nc3 Bf5 7. a3 ({Carlsen prefers} 7. h3 {in this position.}) 7... Qd7 {[#] } 8. b4 $1 {A typical pawn sacrifice for this opening, similar to the Benko gambit and Reti gambit we studied in chapter 5.} Nxb4 {Accepting the pawn sacrifice is risky.} (8... cxb4 9. axb4 Nxb4 10. d4 {gives White interesting compensation.}) ({Better is to continue development with} 8... Nf6) 9. axb4 cxb4 10. Nh4 $1 {The key move, gaining the bishop pair and making the b1 square available for the rook.} bxc3 11. Nxf5 gxf5 {This weakening of the kingside is a long term problem.} (11... Qxf5 {would leave the b7 pawn hanging. }) 12. Rb1 Rb8 13. dxc3 Nf6 ({Black does not have time for} 13... Bxc3 14. c5 { as he would be lagging behind in development too much.}) 14. c5 $1 {White has beautiful positional compensation for the pawn.} d5 (14... dxc5 15. Bf4 { is the point.}) (14... O-O {to at least develop quickly, may be the best option.}) 15. c4 {Again the most dynamic move.} Ne4 {[#]} 16. cxd5 $1 {Turning the pawn sacrifice into an exchange sacrifice.} Nc3 ({After} 16... Nxc5 { White has many good moves, such as} 17. Ba3) 17. Bb2 $2 {Played with great imagination, even making it a queen sacrifice, but this is overdoing things a bit.} ({The simple} 17. Qc2 Nxb1 18. Qxb1 {leads to an excellent position.}) 17... Nxd1 18. Bxg7 Nc3 $2 {This leads to a pleasant position for White.} ( 18... Rg8 19. Bd4 {and now} Nxf2 20. Bxf2 Rc8 {was the right way to play. Here all black pieces are playing and his king is relatively safe for now. With best play Black may even be better, but in a practical game anything can happen.}) 19. Bxc3 O-O (19... f6 {was the alternative.}) 20. Be5 Rbc8 {[#]} 21. Rfc1 {Bringing the final piece into play. With two bishops and a superior pawn structure, White has good compensation for the queen.} Qa4 $2 {Sacrificing the b7 pawn is not very convincing.} 22. Bf3 $2 ({White could have just taken it with} 22. Rxb7) 22... f6 $2 {This only leads to further weaknesses and pushes the bishop back to stable squares.} ({Correct was} 22... Qa5 {to stick to the c5 pawn.}) 23. Bf4 Qa5 24. Be3 {Now the pawns are well supported.} b6 $2 { This attempt to clearify the situation backfires.} ({Dries pointed out that at first he wanted to play} 24... f4 $1 25. gxf4 Rb8 {and indeed he should have stuck to that.}) 25. c6 {This big passed pawn is too much to handle for Black.} e5 ({The exchange sacrifice} 25... Rc7 26. Bf4 Rfc8 {was the best fighting chance.}) 26. dxe6 {Leaving Black with a very poor kingside structure.} (26. d6 {looks interesting as well, but White does not want to allow Black strong central pawns.}) 26... Qe5 27. Bf4 Qxe6 {[#]} 28. c7 {Excellent judgement, Sipke is playing for total domination. White's position is now completely untouchable, while Black has many weaknesses.} a5 29. Rc6 Qd7 30. Rbxb6 a4 { This sole pawn is not going to give enough counterplay.} 31. Rd6 Qxc7 32. Rb7 { White has given up the big pawn for a direct mating attack.} Qa5 33. Bd5+ Kh8 34. Rdd7 1-0
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