Canadian Kamikaze Weirdness

Canadian Bayonet Attack Weirdness

I chanced upon this report of Montreal 2008 at US Chess online.

It says (from Round 1 action), talking about the IM Roussell-Roozman – GM Charbonneau game….

“The first round also featured some hot King’s Indian theory cooked up by Canadian-American GM Pascal Charbonneau and IM Irina Krush. Pascal told CLO “It’s the first time ever I have had someone walk right into (home prep) like that…where it happens to be totally crushing. The final position is actually in our files.” Pascal also gave his “second” in Montreal, Irina due credit: “Irina found Nh4.” Nh4 contains the threat Bh3!, “it’s really super complex.” In the final position White resigned in view of the devastating entry of the queen into the attack after hxg1+ Rxg1 Qh4.”

I’m interested in the Bayonet Attack, particularly from white’s point of view.  To the casual observer, black broke every positional rule in the book to arrive at this quick victory and there’s something very illogical behind the scenes.   White’s responses were distinctly strange at several moments and it’s hard to believe Pascal and Irinia anticipated what looks like gross white inaccuracies.   Let’s take a closer look at what appears to be preparation versus a blunder!

IM Roussell-Roozman – GM Charbonneau, Round 1, Montreal 2008

1. Nf3 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. d4 O-O 6. Be2 e5 7. O-O Nc6 8. d5 Ne7 9. b4 Ne8 A rather passive move, but black has coupled it with a kamikaze attack idea.  Let’s see it

Position after 9…Ne8.  Canadian Loony Tunes Ahead.

10. c5 f5 11. Nd2 Nf6 12. f3 f4 13. Nc4 g5 Can’t argue with white’s play yet.

14. a4 Here’s an important moment. What about 14. Ba3 speeding up things by dispensing with a2-a4?  Not playing a2-a4 and gaining a whole tempo might be huge in this race on opposite wings.  For example, 14…Ne8 (14… Ng6!? is stronger) 15. Rc1 h5 16. Qb3 g4 17. b5 Rf7 18. Bb4! is a very nasty idea.  White looks to be faster. Keep this in mind as we follow the game.   If nothing further on appeals to white, we need to go back here and consider 14. Ba3!? more carefully.

9/7/08:  Here is my first attempt.  For example, 14. Ba3(!) Ng6 15. cxd6 cxd6 16. b5 (this move order doesn’t allow black the d6xc5 transformation) Ne8 (forced) 17. Rc1 h5 18. Rf2 Rf7 19. h3 b6 20. Bb4! Bf8 21. a4 Rg7 22. a5 Nh4 23. axb6 axb6 24. Na4! with a plus. If 24…Rb8?? 25. Naxb6 wins. So 24…Rb7 is forced, diverting an attacking piece.

14… Ng6 15. Ba3 Rf7 16. b5

Position after 16. b5.  Black’s next is real shock-horror.

16…dxc5 Positional Shock-horror! Giving up the pawn structure looks to be suicide, but they had prepared this!  Wow.   With best play for both sides, from this point, chess logic demands that white stands better! 🙂  But can we really find a way?   We have to start somewhere….

By the way, Roussel-Roozman has an interesting comment on this move:  “16…dxc5 is in fact a very strong positional move that allows black to get rid of his d6 weakness. Tactically speaking, it’s the only reasonable move as well since 16…Bf8? runs into 17.b6! with a huge positional advantage for white.”

I wouldn’t think of it as positional since d5-d6 is always possible now and e5 hangs sometimes, but an interesting perspective!  Maybe it’s completely tactically motivated!  Whatever the case, we need to look hard here because something good for white is swimming under the surface.

17. Bxc5 h5 18. a5 g4 19. b6 There are other moves here but this looks to the point.

19…g3 A very important moment.

Position after 19…g3.  Do or die.

20. Kh1 The fairly obvious 20. bxc7 deflecting black from his intentions and furthering white’s play in the center at first glance looks very good here.

Note in passing that the awkward 20. bxa7? runs into 20…Nd7! with the idea of Qh4 and that is too risky (not 20…gxh2+? 21 Kxh2 h4 22. d6! and white smashes through.)

Let’s see our first idea: 20. bxc7 gxh2+ 21. Kxh2 Qxc7 22. Bf2 and this looks terrible for black.   Also grim, similarly, is 21…Rxc7 22. Bf2.  No attack for black is to be seen.

Another bad line for black: 20. bxc7 Rxc7 21. Bb4 gxh2+ 22 Kxh2 Nh7 23. Nb5! is smashing.

All of this leads us to find the real nature of black’s trick: 20. bxc7 Rxc7 21. Bb4 Nxe4! 22. Nxe4 Qh4.   After this, black has a great attack.  The same variation would follow 21. Ba3, by the way.

20… Bf8 21. Bg1

Now if white tries it again, 21. bxc7, NOT 21…Qxc7?  22. Bd6!! Bxd6 23. Nb5 Qd8 24. Nbxd6 with domination but instead black has the stronger 21…Rxc7! 22. Bg1 h4! with good counterplay.

And if  21. Bxf8 Nxd5! 22. Bc5 Qh4 23. Bg1, the knight on c3 hangs:  23…Nxc3 and black stands somewhat better.

21… Nh4 As noted in the quote above, black threatens Bh3 nastiness.  And this, of course, is a critical point.

Position after 21…Nh4.  The real acid test.

22. Re1?? A fatal misstep.

22. hxg3! fxg3! is correct, not 22…Nxg2?  23. Nxe5 Rg7 24. Qd2 (or 24. Qb3 Rxg3 25. d6+ and wins) Ne3 25. Bxe3 fxe3 26. Qxe3 Rxg3 27. Rg1 h4 28. Rxg3+ hxg3 29. Qg5+ Bg7 30. Rg1 Qe8 31. f4 and white wins.  After the faulty 22…Nxg2? white can also venture the scary looking 23. Kxg2 Rg7 and live:  24. Nxe5 Rxg3 25. Kh1 Nd7 26. Ng6! guarding h4, and diverting the rook from its menacing position.  White has an edge after 26…Rxg6 27. bxc7.

Returning to 22. hxg3 fxg3, if 23. Qd2 Rg7 24. d6 Bh3! 25. Ne3 Qc8! and this illustrates well black’s cheapo potentials.  However, white has better: 23. Be3!. This move is also a lemon.

Now 23…Bh3 can be handled:  24. Rg1 Qc8 25. Bf1!  and the crawling into a ball formation not only saves white, it happens to win!   Note that 24…Qd7 is even worse, because at the end of this line the fact that e5 is hanging makes matters worse for black.

So I would need to see more on black’s best after 22. hxg3 fxg3 23. Be3! because crude attempts to get the BQ to h4, mating, do not work:  23…Nd7 24. bxc7! Qf6 25. Qd2! and white wins.

To try to answer my own question, maybe black’s chief concept is the rather crude 23. Be3 Ne8!? to prepare the queen’s line to h4.   After this move it’s really crazy.   One humorous draw is 24. Qc1 Nxf3!? 25. Rxf3 Qh4+ 26. Kg1 Bh6!! (wow!) 27. Rxg3+ Qxg3 28. Bxh6 Qf2+ with a perpetual!   Another nutty line is 24. Qd2 Bh3!? 25. Rg1 Qc8! (again, this motif!) and now if 26. Bd1 Bb4! the computer is starting to like black!  Yet another is 26. Bf1 Bxg2+ 27. Rxg2 Qxh3+ (wow!!) 28. Rh2 Qxh2+ 29. Qxh2 gxh2 with “chaos on board”. Update 9/6/08:  Commentator Kurt Stein points out 23. Be3? Nh7! wins for black!

22… Nxg2! Decisive.  Maybe white missed this altogether when playing his last move.

23. Kxg2 Rg7 24. Nxe5 Everything loses. The computer shows 24. hxg3 Rxg3+ wins quickly for black.

24…gxh2+ 25. Kh1 Nxe4! After this elementary blow, clearing lines to mate the hapless wk, white gave up.

0-1

USCL Week 2 Results

I enjoyed for aesthetic reasons (nice Q&N coordination) Yeager’s win over Ray Kaufman.   Also interesting was some post-mortem analysis on Rensch-Bartholomew, a game that was unfortunately truncated after an uncharacteristic blunder by Danny.

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3 Responses to “Canadian Kamikaze Weirdness”

  1. Scourge Says:

    Remarkably, 20.Kh1 shows up in Shredder’s opening book (the big one).

    It’s hard to believe that 16…dxc5 is sound against accurate play. You called it “giving up the Pawn structure”, I’d call it relieving the tension or more to the point, mobilizing the d-pawn.

    In light of that, White’s future may lie in a well-timed stroke to d6. After 17.Bxc5 h5 I tried the immediate 18.d6 Be6 19.Nd5 cxd6 20.Nxd6

    Maybe that’s too early, so perhaps 18.Kh1 g5 19.d6 Be6 20.Nd5 is better.

    While I can’t deny that there are practical chances in the form of cheap shot sackmates, I believe that White can ultimately answer all threats and maintain an edge.

    Earlier, I’m still not sure if a2-a4 is necessary.

  2. barcode Says:

    Mark

    after 23. Be3, 23… Nh7 does the job for Black!

    Kurt

    That’s true! Black wins after 23. Be3 Nh7! 24. Qd2 Ng6 25. Kg1 Qh4 26. Rfc1 Qh2+ 27. Kf1 Qh1+ 28. Bg1 Nf4. My attention goes back to 14. Ba3!? instead of a2-a4.

    For example, 14. Ba3 Ng6 15. cxd6 cxd6 16. b5 (this move order doesn’t allow black the d6xc5 transformation) Ne8 (forced) 17. Rc1 h5 18. Rf2 Rf7 19. h3 b6 20. Bb4! Bf8 21. a4 Rg7 22. a5 Nh4 23. axb6 axb6 24. Na4! with a plus. If 24…Rb8?? 25. Naxb6 wins. So 24…Rb7 is forced, diverting an attacking piece.

  3. Scourge Says:

    Your 14.Ba3 looks pretty good and I’m gonna try it first chance I get. I’ve studied and used similar treatments in the white side of the Makagonov Gruenfeld, so I think the move is well motivated.

    Another earlier move that’s worth consideration from the White side of this line is 13.Nb3. Surely the move has been played, but it’s not in my databases. This turns out to be a flexible move that keeps White’s options open. The Knights can harrass Black’s queenside or, if necessary, they can come back and defend on the kingside.

    Following is a Shredder vs Shredder demonstration of what can happen with 13.Nb3. White chose to lock up the queenside, and Black had to sacrifice a piece to get the kingside attack going. The positions at some points are bizarre, and at times aesthetically pleasing. The pawn chains at move 31 are out of this world!

    The horizon effect eventually kicked in, and White kept the material and Black’s attack backfired.

    What I like about this game is the wealth of defensive resources the Knights provided with their mobility. That, and Black’s just punishment at the end.

    [Event “simulation”]
    [Site “?”]
    [Date “2008.09.02”]
    [Round “?”]
    [White “Shredder”]
    [Black “Shredder”]
    [Result “1-0”]

    1. Nf3 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. d4 O-O 6. Be2 e5
    7. O-O Nc6 8. d5 Ne7 9. b4 Ne8 10. c5 f5 11. Nd2 Nf6 12. f3
    f4 13. Nb3 g5 14. Bb2 Ng6 15. Na5 b6 16. Nc4 Qe7 17. c6 Nh4
    18. a4 a6 19. Qe1 Nh5 20. a5 b5 21. Nd2 Qf7 22. Nd1 Nf6
    23. Nf2 Qh5 24. Rc1 g4 25. fxg4 Qg6 26. Bd1 h5 27. Nd3 Nxg2
    28. Kxg2 hxg4 29. Rg1 Qh6 30. Kh1 g3 31. Nf1 Qh7 32. Bf3
    Bg4 33. Bxg4 Nxg4 34. Rg2 Nf6 35. Nd2 Ng4 36. Nf1 Kh8
    37. Qd1 f3 38. Rxg3 Qxe4 39. Qe1 Qxd5 40. Nf2 Nxf2+
    41. Qxf2 Rf7 42. Ne3 Qe4 43. Ng4 Re8 44. Re1 Qxb4 45. Reg1
    Re6 46. Bc1 Qd4 47. Rh3+ Kg8 48. Be3 Qd5 49. Nh6+ Kf8
    50. Nxf7 Kxf7 51. Qxf3+ Qxf3+ 52. Rxf3+ Rf6 53. Rh3 1-0

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