B42 Sicilian Defense
Players participating on 12/1:
WHITE - Dr. Ian Mangion 1986 (moderator), Don Carrelli 1860, Dr. Richard Lewis 1820, Lou Sturniolo 1665, Dr. Geoff McAulife 1644, Joe Renna 1425, Bert Shiffman 1294, Luis Ruales 608
BLACK - LM Mark Kernighan 2233, Max Sherer 1824, John Moldovan 1797 (the moderator), Greg Tomkovich 1611, Ted Mann 1476 , Pat Mazzillo 1353, Chris Constantino 1234, Joe Azzarello + Dan Komunicky 1520
1.e4 c5 Another Sicilian :-( I wanted a French, Modern or Caro-Kann.
2.Nf3 e6 [2...a6 , the O'Kelly Variation, garnered no support. Wait a minute... I made the same 2 rants last year!]
3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 a6 Diagram The Kan, a.k.a. "The Safest Sicilian", was used by Bobby Fischer in the deciding 21st game of the 1972 World Championship. Our previous consultations have featured the Taimanov (2006), Scheveningen (2008) and Sveshnikov (2010) Variations.
5.Bd3 Diagram [#] Not wanting to commit his bN or c-pawn, as yet, White brings out his last K-side piece and prepares to castle. [For 5.Be2 Demetrick - J. Roach : Kenilworth Championship 2008.]
5...Nc6 This develops logically and with tempo but hasn't been played at the top levels since Leko - Khalifman : Budapest (m/2) 2000. Also, at Chess Publishing, GM John Fedorowicz wrote "This is getting a dubious reputation." [5...Bc5 , which also hits the unprotected Nd4,; & 5...Nf6 are the most popular replies.]
6.Nb3 An unusual response. [6.Nxc6 dxc6 7.0-0 is the norm.]
6...Nf6 7.0-0 Be7 [I would have preferred 7...d6 8.c4 Qc7 9.Nc3 Ne5 getting the N off c6 and attacking the Bd3 + c4P before White can get his R to the c-line.]
8.c4 Diagram [Rather than remain flexible with 8.Be3 ; or 8.Qe2 White grabs space and creates a Maroczy Bind.]
8...d6 [8...d5 9.cxd5 exd5 10.exd5 Nxd5 11.Qe2 0-0 12.Rd1 Xu Yuhua - P. Cramling : Shenyang 2000 12...Bd6 13.Bxh7+ Kxh7 14.Qh5+ Kg8 15.Rxd5 (15.Qxd5?? Bxh2+! 16.Kxh2 Qh4+ 17.Kg1 Rd8-+ ) 15...Be6 16.Rd1 g6© was a good alternative.]
9.Nc3 0-0 10.Be3 b6 Now, after... [10...Ne5 as suggested by Ted 11.Be2 Qc7 12.Rc1 Bd7 , which occurred in Langer - R. Milovanovic : Texas Championship, Dallas 1999, was an option.]
11.f4 ... Black's game is more cramped and passive.
11...Qc7 [>=11...Bb7 /\12.Rc1 Rc8 W. Roach - Morais : correspondence 2000 (which reached this position in 13 moves) 13.Qe2 Nd7 ]
12.Rc1 Bb7N Diagram [>=12...Rb8 13.Nd5 Qd8 14.Nxe7+ Qxe7 15.Qe2 Qc7 16.Bd2= Salman - A. Sanchez : Bled 2002]
13.Nd5! This leap is thematic in hedgehog formations and my side was forewarned of it several moves earlier.
13...exd5 14.cxd5 Qd7 15.dxc6 Bxc6 16.Qc2 [Houdini offers >=16.Bd4 but says it doesn't bring any advantage.]
16...Rfc8 17.Qb1 [17.Bxb6 would been answered by 17...Bxe4 ]
17...Bb5 The White team sealed its 18th move. Time left - White 28:02, Black 28:59 Game adjourned until December 8th. Analysis room unavailable on 12/8. Game resumed December 29th. Diagram [>=17...Qb7 ]
18.Bxb5 The sealed move. [However, >=18.Bxb6 Qb7 19.Bd4 Bxd3 20.Qxd3 Qxe4 21.Qxe4 Nxe4 22.Na5 ] Players taking part on 12/29: WHITE - Carrelli, McAuliffe (moderator), Sturniolo, Shiffman + Ari Minkov 1955 & Thomson Kneeland BLACK - Kernighan (via phone), Moldovan (moderator), Tomkovich, Mazzillo, Azzarello, + Rich Falcetano 1937, Schnaider Mendonca (unrated)
18...Qxb5 [According to Greg's adjournment analysis, 18...axb5 was good, too.]
19.Nd4 Qe8 20.Nf5 g6 [Rich was worried this would weaken our dark squares too much and preferred 20...Bf8 ]
21.Nxe7+ Qxe7 Diagram Having reached the end of our preparations, we placed a call to Mark.
22.e5? There were some concerns about this P-sac and White's follow-up (23.f5, 24.Bh6) but they subsided when I found 24...Qh4. [>=22.Bxb6 Qxe4 23.Qxe4 Nxe4 24.Bd4= ]
22...dxe5 23.f5? [>=23.Rfe1=/+ ]
23...Nd5 Diagram The attempt to exploit our ...g6 has failed. White has little or nothing in return for the sacked P.
24.Bh6 [>=24.Qe4-/+ /\Nxe3?! 25.Qxe3=/+ ]
24...Qh4 Geoff said his team missed this.
25.fxg6? [>=25.Rcd1 /\Qxh6 26.Rxd5-/+ ]
25...hxg6? A safety-first move (mea culpa) in time trouble. [>=25...Qxh6 Kernighan 26.gxf7+ Kf8 27.Rce1 Qg6 28.Qxg6 hxg6 29.Rxe5 Ne7-+ ]
26.Qd3? [>=26.Rcd1-/+ /\Qxh6 27.Rxd5=/+ ]
26...Rd8-+ 27.Qf3? This temporary piece-sac turns out to be a permanent piece-loss. [>=27.Be3 Nf4 28.Qc2 Rac8 29.Qxc8 Ne2+ 30.Kh1 Rxc8 31.Rxc8+ Kg7 32.Rf2 ]
27...Qxh6 28.Qxf7+ Kh8 29.Rc6? This creates a back-rank weakness. [>=29.Rce1 ]
29...Rf8 Diagram White must have overlooked this or Black's next, as well.
30.Rxg6 Desparation. [If 30.Qxd5 , recovering the piece, then 30...Qe3+ 31.Rf2 Qxf2+ 32.Kh1 Qf1# ]
30...Qe3+ 31.Kh1 Rxf7 White resigns Time left - White 4:15, Black 6:01 Time used - White 116:45, Black 114:59 For reasons unknown, the White side chose to play the 2nd session without analysis boards. 0-1