(1) Chen,Kevin (1917) - Kernighan,Mark (2218) [C42]
Kenilworth Summer Tournament - open Kenilworth, NJ (6), 14.07.2011
[Chen, Kevin E.]



1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.Nc3 Nxc3 6.dxc3 Be7 7.Bd3 0-0
[7...Nd7 8.0-0 Nc5 9.c4 Nxd3 10.Qxd3 was something I tried in a prior game earlier this year. See Chen-Ferrero, 1/2-1/2, 44.95/0 ]

8.0-0 Nd7 9.Bf4 Nc5 10.Nd4 Nxd3 11.Qxd3 Bf6 12.Rfe1
I debated which Rook I wanted to bring here first, & chose this one in case I wanted to play Rad1 instead of doubling.

12...a6
[12...Bg4 13.f3 Bh5 14.Qb5 hits the bishop & a pawn, according to my opponent. It's highly unlikely that I would go for this though, since Black if he wants, could get his Rook to b2.; 12...Re8 13.Rxe8+ (13.Nb5 Rxe1+ (13...a6? 14.Rxe8+ Qxe8 15.Nxc7 ) 14.Rxe1 is very similar to the game where Black still has problems getting out his corner Rook & light bishop.) 13...Qxe8 14.Nb5 Qe7 ]

13.Re3 Re8 14.Rae1 Rxe3 15.Rxe3
to keep Qe2 open & to avoid a protected ...Re8 later hitting the Queen on e3.

15...Bg4 16.Nf5
My opponent admitted underestimating this move.

16...Qd7 17.Ng3
During live play & a 5-minute think, I didn't like the two variations that I present below. However, both are worth investigating. [17.Nxg7 Bxg7 18.Rg3 Bf5? (18...h5 19.h3 Bf5 (19...Kh8 20.hxg4 h4 21.Rh3 Qxg4 ) 20.Qd4 f6 21.Qxf6 Rf8 22.Qh6 ) 19.Qd4 f6 20.Bh6 (I only saw 20.Qxf6 live, allowing 20...Rf8 21.Qd4 ) ; 17.Nh6+ gxh6 18.Rg3 h5 19.h3 Kh8 (19...Bh4 20.hxg4 Bxg3 21.Qxg3 looks bad for me. 21...Qxg4 ) 20.hxg4 h4 ]

17...Re8
[17...g5 appears to trap my Bishop, but opening lines in front of the king can't be good. 18.Ne4 threatens a great forking check. 18...Qd8 (18...gxf4?? 19.Nxf6+ ; 18...Qe7 19.Nxg5! Bxg5 (19...Qd8 20.Qxh7+ Kf8 21.Qxf7# ) 20.Rxe7 Bxe7 21.Qg3+- ) 19.Rg3 best to do this with the Queen at home & more forces available for the attack. (19.Nxf6+ Qxf6 20.Bxg5 Qxg5 21.Rg3 Qc1+ 22.Qf1 Qxc2 23.Rxg4+ Kf8 24.Qe1 but gives Black a big edge.) ; 17...Qa4 18.Ne4 ; 17...Qb5 was maybe his best option. 18.Qxb5 axb5 19.a3 ]

18.h3 Rxe3 19.Qxe3 Be6 20.Nh5
I didn't know what else to do here, & thought that opposite-color Bishops was my best chance to draw. My opponent thinks the knight is better with my closed pawn structure, but the c2-pawn is a goner if the light Bishop & Queen double-hit it.

20...Qd8 21.Nxf6+ Qxf6 22.a3 h6 23.Qg3 Bf5 24.Be3
I accepted that c2 would fall, so I resorted to counterplay.

24...Qe6 25.Bd4 f6 26.Qe3 Qf7
[26...Qxe3 27.Bxe3 Bxc2 28.h4 is awfully drawish.]

27.Qf3 Bc8
[27...Qg6 28.Qxb7 Be4 doesn't quite work because I have 29.Qc8+ Kh7 30.Qg4 ]

28.h4 Qg6 29.Qd5+ Kh7 30.Qc4 c5 31.Be3 Bf5 32.Qf4
[32.Qd5?? Be4!! is decisive, hitting the Queen & mate at g2 simultaneously.]

32...Be4 33.f3 Bc6
[33...Bxc2 34.Qxd6 ]

34.Qxd6 Bxf3 35.Qd2 c4 36.b4 Be4
[36...b5 Could let my king take the a6-pawn in the ending.]

37.a4 Bxc2 38.a5 Be4 39.Qf2
here, my Bishop has numerous safe squares to actively defend my pawns.

39...Qe8 40.Bd4 Qb5
My opponent & I both agree that he should have stayed on the a8-h1 diagonal.

41.Qf4 Bg6
[41...Qd5 42.Qc7 Bxg2 43.Bxf6 may be too exciting for Black.]

42.Qc7 Kg8 43.Qd8+ Qe8
Letting me play Bc5 & Qe7 couldn't be good for my opponent.

44.Qxe8+ Bxe8 45.g3
I don't think my opponent heard me offer a draw here. But now it's really tough as it's hard to force a passed pawn through.

45...Kf7 46.Kf2 Bc6 47.Ke3 h5 48.Kf4 Bh1 49.Bc5 Bc6 50.Bd4 Bb5 51.Kf5 Bd7+ 52.Kf4 Ke6 53.Bb6 Be8 54.Bd4 Bg6 55.Bc5 Bc2 56.Bd4 Kf7 57.Bc5 Kg8 58.Be7 Kh7 59.Bd8 Kh6 60.Be7 Kg6 61.Bd8 Kf7 1/2-1/2