The Fabulous 00s: Drunken Madness at NH Rising Stars Tournament

Madness, I tell you, Madness (or Sickness)

In Nakamura-Ljuobjevic  NH Rising Stars Tournament (in progress, Amsterdam, Holland), white fell into a move order trap that I have committed while drunk in ICC blitz.

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 g6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Bg7 5. Nc3 Nc6 6. Be3 Nf6 7. Bc4 Qa5 8. Nb3? Excitable GM Ljubojevic must have fallen off his chair as white falls into a dusty, old, move-order trap.  Note that Ljubojevic was my personal chess hero in the 1970s for his crazy openings and extreme tactics.  Play over, for example, two Ljubo demolitions of GM Lev Alburt.   Alekhine’s Defense Demolition #1 (Malta Olympiad, 1980) and  Alekhine’s Defense Demolition #2, even nicer, NY Open 1985.

Correct is 8. O-O and if 8…Ng4?! (8… d6 9. h3 O-O 10. Bb3 Bd7  is normal with such players as Tal drawing the black side)  9. Qxg4 Nxd4 10. Nd5! guarantees white an edge, and white went on to win, in Ciric,D-Ilievski,D/Novi Sad 1965.  And 8. O-O has the added benefit of being able to keep a complicated game!

8… Qb4! I have had the same sinking feeling as white in ICC blitz.

No Way Out

No Way Out

9. Bd3 Note here there is the interesting gambit which I did not spot at all, 9. Nd2!? Qxb2 10. Nb5 which in no way is worse than the game move.   For example, GM Zapata drew A. Hoffman at Santos 2001. Objectively, the gambit isn’t good but it offers more complexity.

9… Nxe4 10. Bxe4 Bxc3+ 11. bxc3 Qxe4 Now white is just down a center pawn and the position is simplified.  In the radio blog interview, Nakamura tried to pass this off as prep.  I would do the same, white’s 8th move is a nice cupcake for black. Admittedly, Ljubo does make some mistakes coming up, but this position is just not good for white (and not too many chances to complicate, either).

12. O-O d6 After 12… O-O black is comfortably better.  For example, 13. Re1 Qh4 (13… Qc4! 14. Nd4 d6 and yes, White is worse:  aries2-totalfish, icc 5 0 blitz, 7/8/08.  White duly lost.  One of my drunken blitz disasters.

13. Re1 Qg4?! In these lines, 13… Qc4 is always the strongest keeping maximum eye on the important center light squares.

14. f3 Qh5?! Again, the queen should like to nest on c4!

15. Qd2 Be6 16. Nd4 Nxd4 17. Bxd4 Rg8?! Much simpler and stronger was 17… O-O with an instructive sample line 18. a4 a6! 19. Rab1 b5! 20. axb5 axb5 21. Qd3 Bc4 22. Qe4 e5 and black is developing a big initiative.

18. a4! Naka finds his chance and the game is equal!

18…g5 19. Rab1 b6 20. h3 Qg6 21. a5 h5 22. axb6 axb6 23. Rxb6 g4 24. fxg4 hxg4 25. h4 Qh5 25…g3! is a good move after which it’s equal but easy to play for black.

26. Qe2 Rc8 The nice trap here was 26… Qxh4?? 27. Qb5+ Kf8 28. Rb8+ Bc8 29. Rxa8 Qxe1+ 30. Qf1 Qe6 31. Qe2! Qf5 32. Qa6! and white wins.  Very geometric.

27. Reb1 Qxh4 28. Rb8 g3 29. Qb5+? The key moment.  29. Rxc8+ leads to a drawn game.

29… Kf8 30. Qc6 Qg4 31. Rxc8+ Bxc8 32. Rf1 Rg6 33. Rf4 Qd7 34. Qe4 Kg8 Here, black misses the incisive 34… f5 !35. Qd5 e6 36. Qc4 e5 37. Rh4 Kg7 38. Bb6 f4!

35. Be3 e5 36. Rf1 f5 37. Qc4+ Qe6 38. Qc7 f4 39. Qd8+ Kg7? More accurate was 39… Kh7! 40. Bb6 Bb7! 41. c4 f3 42. Qh4+ Rh6 43. Qxg3 fxg2 and black wins.

40. Ra1 Rf6 41. Bb6 Bb7 42. Ra7 Qd5 43. Qd7+ Kh6 44. Qh3+ Kg5 45. Ra1 Rf8 46. Be3 Kg6?! This will win eventually, but a real bone-crushing blow here was 46… Qxg2+! 47. Qxg2 Bxg2 48. Kxg2 fxe3 49. Kxg3 e4 50. Re1 Rf3+ 51. Kg2 Kf4 52. Re2 Rg3+ 53. Kf1 Kf3 and white must resign!

Black could also greedily grab, 46… fxe3 47. Qxg3+ Kh6 48. Qh3+ Kg7 49. Qg4+ Kf6 50. Rf1+ Ke7 51. Qg5+ Ke8 52. Qg6+ Rf7 53.
Qg8+ Ke7 54. Rxf7+ Qxf7 55. Qg5+ Kd7 56. Qxe3 Qd5 57. Qf2 Qxg2+ 58. Qxg2 Bxg2 and he will win.  But 46…Qxg2+! was by far the most aesthetic and convincing win.

47. c4 (47. Qg4+ Kf7 48. Qh5+ Ke7 49. Qh7+ Rf7 50. Qh4+ Ke8 51. Qh8+ Kd7) 47… Qe4 48. Bb6 Kg5 0-1

The Never Ending Tactical Amusement of ICC Blitz

Now let’s see some blitz tactics.

vcs (2343) – aries2  King’s Indian Defense

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 O-O 5. h3 d6 6. Bg5 Nc6 7. d5 Ne5 8. f4?! A little too soon.
Ned7 9. Nf3 c6 10. Bd3 Qb6 11. Qd2 Nc5 12. Bc2
Black to play and amazingly enough from this normal-looking position, win!

Black to play and Win

Black to play and Win

12…cxd5? Wrong!   The harsh computer points out 12….Nxd5!! winning!

13. cxd5 Qxb2 14. O-O Qb4? (14…Qb6) 15. Rab1 Qa5 16. e5 dxe5 17. fxe5 Nfd7 18. Rb5 and now white is just better.  Oh well.

18…Qa3 19. Bxe7 Re8 20. Bd6 a6 21. Nb1 Qxa2 22. Rxc5 Nxc5 23. Bxc5 Bxe5 24. Nxe5 Rxe5 25. Bxg6 Qxd2 26.
Bxf7+ Kg7 27. Nxd2 Rf5 28. Rxf5 Bxf5 29. Bh5 a5 30. Nc4 a4 31. Nb6 Ra6 32. Be2 Ra5 33. Bd4+ Kf7 34. d6 a3 35. Bc4+ Ke8 36. Ba2 Rb5 37. g4 Bd7 38. Kf2
Rb4 39. Ke3 h5 40. gxh5 Bxh3 41. h6 Rb5 42. h7 Rh5 43. h8=Q+ Rxh8 44. Bxh8 Kd8 45. Bf7 {Black resigns} 1-0

And yet another fantastic blitz tactical set of puzzles:

IM Aries2 – IM Porkchopstamer  ICC Blitz 5/0    Modern Defense

1. e4 g6 2. d4 Bg7 3. Nc3 a6 4. h4 d5!? Very frisky!

5. exd5 Nf6 6. Bg5 Nxd5 7. h5 Well, I’m happy.  Black now eggs me on to a piece sac, and we clearly have different ideas about it.

7…h6 Precipitating the crisis.

Sacking against the Pork

Sacking against the Pork

8 . hxg6! hxg5 9. gxf7+ Kf8 10. Rxh8+ Bxh8 11. Qh5 Bg7 12. Nf3 g4 So here we are.  White to play, what’s the best move?  What’s the correct result?

White's gotta be precise here

White's gotta be precise here

13. Ng5? This natural move is wrong!  I am so focused on the possibility of Nh7+ later, I miss the right move.

The crushing move as Rybka rudely mentions is 13. Ne5!! and it never entered my sphere of attention!   Take a look:  13…Nxc3 (13… Bxe5 14. dxe5 Nxc3 (14… Nc6 15. Qg6 e6 16. Qg8+ Ke7 17. Nxd5+ exd5 18. Qg7 Qf8 19. Qf6+ Kd7 20. O-O-O Ne7 21. Be2 wins beautifully by complete paralysis) 15. Qh7 and wins prosaically) 14. Qh7 e6 15. Qg8+ Ke7 16. Qxg7 and wins)

13… Nf6 14. Qg6 Nc6 15. Bc4? Again, I miss a nice shot. 15. Nce4!! Nxd4 16. Nxf6 exf6 17. Nh7+ Ke7 18. O-O-O Bf8 19. Qxf6+ Kd7 20. Nxf8+ Qxf8 21. Rxd4+ Qd6 22.
f8=Q and wins)

15… e6 16. Bxe6 Ne7 17. Qd3 Bh6 18. Nh7+ (18. Nce4 Kg7 (18… Nxe4? 19. Nh7+ Kg7 20. f8=Q+ Qxf8 21. Nxf8 wins) 19. Bxc8 Bxg5 20. Bxb7 Nxe4 21. Qxe4 Rb8
22. Qxg4 Ng6 23. Bxa6 Rxb2 24. Bd3 Nf4 25. Be4)

18… Nxh7 19. Qxh7 Bxe6? And now it’s black’s turn to miss an absolutely beautiful shot.  19…Bd2+!!  would have won the day for him! Continuing, 20. Kxd2 Qxd4+ 21. Ke1 Bxe6 22. Rd1 Qe5+ 23. Kf1 Bxf7 and it’s all over – an incredible defense!

20. Qxh6+ Kxf7 21. Ne4 Bf5 22. Ng5+ Kg8 23. O-O-O?! (23. Ne6! Bxe6 24. Qxe6+ Kg7 25. Qe5+ Kf7 26. Qf4+ Kg7 27. Qe5+ Kf7 28. Qf4+ and I salvage a draw.

23… Qd6! Black finds the right moves, but don’t pay attention to the rest, it’s just a crazy blitz scramble now.

24. Qh4 Qg6 25. Rh1 Kf8 26. Qh8+ Ng8 27. f4 Re8 28. Nh7+ Ke7 29. Qe5+ Kd8 30. Qc5 Kc8 31. Ng5 Nf6 32. Rd1 Ne4 33. Nxe4 Bxe4 34. Qg5 Qe6 35. d5 Kb8 36. dxe6 Bxg2 37. Qg6 Bd5 38. Qxe8+ Ka7 39. Qe7 Bc6 40. f5 Be8 41. f6 Bh5 42. Qf8 g3 43. f7 g2 44. Qg7 g1=Q 45. Qxg1+ 1-0

Award for the Wealthiest Strongest Player I’ve Never Heard Of

A bizarre CNN money article on Chris Flowers.

In high school Flowers was a math whiz and a chess champion.”

“Sure, he enjoys outdoor activities: He likes to sail near his vacation home in North Haven, Maine, and he recently returned from a sailing trip off the coast of Croatia. But it seems no accident that he prefers chess — a contemplative, intense mind teaser of a pastime — to the social staples of banking, golf and tennis.”   Yes, the social staple of “banking” is quite the social hobby (huh, who is writing this stuff??).

Maybe it’s this guy (from rating list):

14051263 (FL) 2009-11-30   975P  1077P  FLOWERS, CHRISTOPHER M 

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