Monday 29 April 2013

Failure in Copenhagen

This position is a moment when everything started to work against me in Copenhagen Chess Challenge 2013.
The final result does not sound so bad, as I made +2 with 5,5 out of 9, but the level of my opponents was such that I needed to score 7 points.
I have to add that everything bad happened in the first half of the tournament, when I lost one game which combined with one victory and three draws gave me only 50% after the first five rounds.
In the second half I started to play better, but only with Black pieces. I won two games, and played two draws with white.
Here is an explanation what actually happened.

 In the first round, which was played on Wednesday evening I won pretty convincingly.
My opponent resigned when he lost the key pawn in the centre.
His position was beyond repair.
In the second round I played against German player Englert Fabian E2214.
I was black and my only wish was to get a position with possibility to play for a win.
I managed to get good counterplay, and after some of his inaccuracies we got the position on the diagram.
On his last move he moved his bishop on f3.
One move earlier I considered that I can sacrifice an exchange with Re5.
Now I seen that I can not play planned Nf4 because of Qh4 and my pieces hanging in the air.
In that moment happened something really strange. Instead of calculating variations, I panicked and played:


He just took on e5 and h5 with a winning position.
Later on I lost on time, just because I did not know that we have not additional time after move 40.
I was lucky that I lost on time in losing position, because it could easy happen in the winning position!
That is not all!
Immediately after moving my rook on e5 I saw what should I do.


My opponent is forced to move his queen on f1, when Black just stands better.
If he players planned (after the game I showed him immediately what I should do, and he said that he did not seen it either) move:

28. Qh4?

I can win directly:

28... Bg5!

Yeah, he can not take it because of a fork on h3.

29. Qg3, d5!

...and there is no good defence against Ne2+ or simply opening the centre in decisive advantage of my pieces.
This sort of mistakes were what I have been left behind me in 2012 and I hope that I will not repeat it again.
In 2013 I managed to get rid of it up to this point.

This is the position from the third round against Swedish junior Tom Rydström.
I had some advantage from the opening, but I was simply not ready to play two games in one day, and with such time control of 90 minutes + 30 seconds for the whole game.
I could not convert my advantages.
Here, he tried to exchange the queens or to get some counterplay on the queenside.
I played the safe move:

21. Bf1?

As computer showed, I should exchange the queens with:

21. Qxb5, Rxb5
22. Re8+, Bf8
23. Bf1, Ra5
24. Bc1, f6
25. Rd8!

The last move is important.
White is clearly better, but I could not estimate correctly during the game. In the matter of fact I did not considered this variation to be serious. I just thought that he has very good counterplay, and that I am in the risk of losing.

Not tired of my mistakes?
Then look what happened in round 4.
This is the position against Norwegian player rated about 2170, who made an IM norm.
I was completely winning, but due to this time control, I got some problems but at this point my position is still winning.
I should play Nc6 as I planned earlier.
Instead I played:


I based my calculation on correct variation:

47. Na4, b5!
48. cxb6, Nxb6!
49. Nxb6, Rxd6  ....and he will lose one of his pieces.

He played :

47. Nxd7, Rxd7
48. Bxb7!

I thought that I am losing, but with just 30 seconds on my clock I still found my way out of this!

49. c6, Re7+!!

...and pawn endgame is just a draw.

He has to take a rook (you can calculate why, on your own).

50. dxe7, Kxe7
51. Kf4, Kd6
52. Kxf5, Kxc6

Now there are two ways to draw this position.
he will take my h-pawn and I will take his a-pawn.
he is quicker but my pawn can reach the second row, with my king on b1.
That position is just a draw, despite his queen against my pawn.

That happened in the game.
The second way  was my first intention in the game (just before I calculated that I can actually just pick his a-pawn and make a draw). I can follow his king on the side, when he takes my h-pawn.
At some point he will go after my a-pawn and I will take his h-pawn.
In that scenario I am just in time for saving square on c8.
I have to thank my knowledge of chess studies, so I could find this automatically, without calculating (which was impossible due to time trouble).

After this game, I did not make any mistakes!
I won my two games with Black, in a very good style, but as White I did not manage to create enough problems for my opponents drawing all my games.
This I can thank for my bad physical condition, as all of my  white games came as a second round of the day, and I could not even prepare for it.

If this was somehow negative article, I will try to do my best to write some positive things in the next article.
I will analyse my games from Sondex Cup and rest of my games from Copenhagen Chess Challenge, just to draw the right conclusions about my Danish tour.

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