(3) Moldovan,John (1814) - Agress,Gordon (1429) [E90]
21st Kenilworth Championship Kenilworth, NJ (4), 03.02.2011
[Moldovan & Houdini 1.5a]

G/85+5 (delay) E90 King's Indian Defense

Originally scheduled to play Joe Demetrick and almost unable to decide what to play on move 1, I was relieved by the pairing changes. ... until I saw...

I thought my former USATE and GSCL teammate played the Q's Gambit & Nimzo-Indian.

[2.e4 was an option but an Anti-Indian system wasn't. They're garbage.]

2...Nf6 3.Nc3 Nc6!?
This Tango-KI hybrid is interesting... Diagram

[... but, I still have to say >=3...Bg7 ; 3...d6 ; 3...d5 Gruenfeld; or 3...c5 Benoni]

4.e4 d6
[4...Bg7!? 5.e5 Ng8 6.d5 Nb8+/= Diagram

would've been funny but I didn't want the joke to be on me.]

[5.d5 Ne5 6.f4 was too commital for my taste.]

[5...Bg4 , which battles for the d4 square and threatens 6...Bxf3 7.gxf3, was expected.]

6.d5 Ne5
[6...Nb8 , borrowing from round 2's Sherer - Chieu (I think they had Be2 and 0-0 in), was an alternative but Black prefers a trade to ...Nbd7-c5 re-deployment.]

[7.Nd2 0-0 8.Be2 e6 9.0-0 exd5 10.cxd5 a6= ]

7...dxe5 8.Be2

[8...0-0 , played in 206 of 210 games, is the norm. Moldovan - Ian "the bailbondsman" : G/5, Springfield 07/30/2006 continued 9.Be3 h5N 10.f3 a6 11.Qd2 b6 12.0-0-0 Qd6 13.Rdg1 Rd8+/= ]

9.Be3 Bb7 10.h3
After thinking for 9 minutes, I opt for a waiting move. Let's see where Gordon puts his K before taking action. [The new engine claims >=10.Qa4+ Qd7 11.Qxd7+ Kxd7 12.c5 but I believe the middlegame holds more terrors for Black than the ending.]

This lets me attack on the right wing but the c4-c5 possibilities made counter-temporization unattactive. [For examples: 10...a6 11.c5 bxc5 12.Qb3 ; & 10...h5 11.c5 bxc5 12.Bxc5 Nd7 13.Be3 ; Trying to halt c5 doesn't work either: 10...Qd6 11.c5! bxc5 12.Bb5+ Nd7 13.Na4 0-0 14.Bxd7 Qxd7 15.Nxc5 Qd6 16.0-0 ; or 10...Nd7 11.Qb3 Rb8 12.Qa3 . In each case, White obtains a larger advantage than in the game.]

The Insanity Variation, Quintuple-deferred! Diagram

The ...Rd8 idea is very artifical and just misplaces pieces. [11...c6 12.g5 Ne8 13.h4 Nd6 14.h5+/= was more appropriate.]

12.g5 Nd7 13.Bg4?!
/\ trading-off the l.s B or placing it on e6, if we have an ...f5, exf6 ...Nxf6 sequence. This plan was correct vs. Doc Lewis's Old Benoni in 2009 but not here.Diagram

[>=13.h4+/- , straight-away.]

This makes Black's Q a prisoner and takes a square the Nf6 could have used. [>=13...f5 14.gxf6 Nxf6+/= ]

[>=14.Nb5 threatening the Q and, as a result, winning the a7 P.]

[>=14...e6 15.h5 exd5 16.cxd5 Qe7+/= ; 14...f5? was out of the question now because 15.exf5 gxf5 16.Bh5 picks-up an Exchange.]

15.h5 Bc8??

[>=15...cxd5 16.cxd5 Nc5 17.hxg6 hxg6 18.Bxc5 bxc5 19.Qf3 f5 20.exf5 Bc8 ]

[16.hxg6 hxg6 17.Qf3+- , threatening 18.Qh3 followed by 19.Qxh7#, was right.; Not 16.dxc6? Nf6 17.Bd7[] Bxd7 18.c7 Nxh5 19.cxd8Q Qxd8+/= ]

16...Nc5 17.Bxc8 Rxc8 18.hxg6 fxg6 19.b4?
With this lemon, White throws away the rest of his advantage and gives his foe good counterplay. Diagram

[19.Bxc5 bxc5 20.0-0-0+/- was correct.]

I overlooked this.

20.bxc5 d4 21.cxb6 dxe3 22.Qxe3?
Yet another mistake. [>=22.fxe3! axb6 23.Qh2! /\Rxc4?? (Black has to sac the hP with 23...h5 / h6 24.gxh6 Bf6 ; or 23...Rf7 24.Qxh7+ Kf8 ) 24.Qxh7++- Kf7 25.Rf1+ Ke6 26.Rxf8 Bxf8 27.Rb1! Rxc3? 28.Qg8+ Kd7 (28...Qf7? 29.Rxb6+ Kd7 30.Qxf7 ) 29.Qd5+ Kc7 30.Qxe5+ Kb7 31.Qxc3+- ]

Agress misses his chance and again falls behind. [22...axb6=/+ would have given him an edge.]

23.bxa7 Qa8
Threatening 24...Rxc3! 25.Qxc3 Qxe4+ -+.Diagram

[23...Qc6?! 24.Nd5+/- threat: 25.Nxe7+ followed by 26.Nxc6.]

Max Sherer watched me play this and seemed to disapprove. [Perhaps he had 24.Kf1!?+/- /\Rxc3? 25.Qxc3+- Qxe4? (>=25...Qxa7 ) 26.Rh3! in mind.]

Sadly for Black, this "attacking" move does him in. It weakens the back-rank and puts his fR at risk. [>=24...Rd4 25.a4 Qxa7 26.Nb5 Qd7 27.Nxd4 exd4+/- would have kept him in the game.]

This move and some that follow were not best but they were good-enough to win. [Much >=25.Rab1 threat: 26.Rb8+ but, to be honest, stopping ... Rg4+ and solidifying e4 were all I cared about. I played f3 almost immediately.]

[25...Rc7? would have allowed me to consolidate via 26.Nb5 Rb7 27.a4 ; 25...Rxc3 , sacking the Exchange to collect the a7 passer, was the best try.]

26.Nd5 Qf8?
[>=26...Rd4 ]


[>=27.Nxf4 exf4 28.Qb3 ]

27...Rc8[] 28.Nxf4
[>=28.Nb6 Rd8[] 29.Nd7 ]

28...exf4 29.Qb3+ Kh7 30.Rfd1 Qh8 31.Qd5?!
[>=31.Qf7 pinning the B &, thereby, threatening 32.gxh6.]

31...Ra8 32.Rb7 hxg5
This fatally exposes the K but the result was already known.

>= Kg2, here or next.

33...Kh6 34.Rd2
Threatening mate.

A spite check.

and, faced the prospect of having to trade Qs and be a R+P down, Black resigned. Time left - Moldovan 17:12, Agress 28:34 Estimated time used - Moldovan 70:38, Agress 59:16 Longest think by White - 12 miutes for 32.Rb7 Longest think by Black - 6 minutes for 15...Bc8?? With a win next week, I can tie for 2nd. A loss might drop me to 9th. 1-0