Catch and Release

Steve Stoyko (2299) - Mark Kernighan (2200) [D58]

Hamilton Quads/Groveville, NJ USA (1) 2006


Kernighan described this as a "game of catch and release" with him playing the role of the fish wriggling on the other end of the line. Steve finally reeled him in, but he basically had to win this game three or four times because he missed the most accurate method at several key points.

 

1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. cxd5 exd5 5. Bg5 Be7 6. e3 O-O 7. Bd3 h6 8. Bh4 b6 9. Nf3 Bb7 10. O-O c5 11. Rc1 Nbd7 12. Ne5!? Nxe5

Stoyko was of the opinion that this move is an error because it liquidates the tension prematurely and gives White a potentially strong pawn formation for building a kingside attack. But he could not suggest a better move, and I do not think one can be found.

a) 12... Ne4?! 13. Bxe7 Qxe7 14. Nxd7 Qxd7 15. Bxe4 dxe4 16. dxc5

b) 12... c4 13. Bf5

 

13. dxe5 Nd7?!

I think this is the mistake.

13... Ne4! 14. Bxe7 (14. Bg3 Nxg3 15. hxg3 d4 16. exd4 cxd4 17. Ne4 Rc8) 14... Qxe7 15. Qh5 Nxc3 16. Rxc3 Qg5!? 17. Qxg5 hxg5 18. f4 gxf4 19. exf4 d4

 

14. Bg3 Bh4 15. Bxh4 Qxh4 16. f4 Rad8 17. Bf5!

Encircling Black's Queen, opening the d-file to pressure the pawn at d5, discouraging ...Rc8, and inviting a kingside weakening by ...g6.

 

17... Rfe8?

This simply loses a pawn.

a) One idea of White's last is revealed on 17... Ba6? 18. g3 Qe7 19. Nxd5

b) Practically forced is 17... Nb8 , when it's not clear what White's best is, but it is much less clear how Black can disentangle. For example: 18. Qf3!? Na6 (18... Nc6?! 19. g3! Qe7 20. Nxd5) 19. Nb5!

 

18. g3 Qe7 19. Nxd5 Bxd5 20. Qxd5 Nf8 21. Qc4!

Stopping Black's counterplay with ...f6.

 

21... Rd2

21... Kh8!?

 

22. Rf2! Red8 23. Rcf1 Rxf2 24. Rxf2 Rd1+ 25. Kg2 Qe8?! 26. Bc2 Rd8 27. Qe4 Qb5 28. f5! Qe8

28... Qxb2? 29. e6!

 

29. e6 Nh7










30. h4?!

More immediately fatal is 30. e7! Rd7 31. f6 Ng5 32. Qf5 g6 33. Qg4

 

30... Nf6 31. Qc4

31. Qf3! with ideas like Bb3, exf7+, and g4-g5 in the air.

 

31... fxe6 32. fxe6 Qc6+!? 33. Kg1 Rb8










34. Rxf6?!

34. e7+! Kh8 35. Qf7 Ng8 36. Qf5

 

34... gxf6 35. e7+ Kg7 36. Bb3

36. Qd3!?

 

36... Qe8










37. Qf4!

with the winning idea of Bb3-d5-c6.

 

37... Rb7?

37... Rc8!? 38. Be6! (38. Qg4+? Qg6! 39. Qxc8 Qxg3+ 40. Kf1 Qf3+ 41. Ke1 Qxe3+ 42. Kd1 Qd3+ 43. Kc1 Qe3+ 44. Kc2 Qe4+=) (38. Ba4 Qg6) 38... Rb8 39. Bd5 Rc8 (39... h5 40. Bc6 Qxe7 (40... Qxc6 41. Qxb8 Kf7 42. Qf8+) 41. Qxb8 Qxe3+ 42. Kh2 Qe2+ 43. Bg2 Qxb2 44. Qxa7+) 40. Qg4+ Kh7 41. Be4+ Kh8 42. Qf5

 

38. Qg4+ Kh8 39. Qe6?

39. Bf7!

 

39... Kg7?

39... Rxe7 40. Qxf6+ Kh7 (40... Rg7 41. Qxh6+ Rh7 42. Qf6+ Rg7 43. Be6) 41. Bc2+ Kg8 42. Qxh6 Qf7 43. h5 would be a tough win for White.

 

40. Qg4+ Kh8 41. Bf7! Qxf7 42. Qc8+ Kh7 43. Qxb7?!

43. e8=Q! Qxe8 44. Qxe8

 

43... Qe8 44. Qe4+ Kg7 45. Qe6 b5 46. e4 c4 47. e5! fxe5










48. h5!! Qxh5 49. Qd7!

and Black resigns, since White queens next move without allowing any checks.

 

1-0

[Michael Goeller]

Game in PGN