My Anti-Pierce Defense
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.f4 Bb4!?

By Michael Goeller

I have made it something of a principle never to play into my opponent's preparation, but always to choose an alternate path where a reasonable one exists. However, in the Vienna Game reached via 1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.f4, theory indicates that there is no better move for Black than 3...exf4, leading to obscure and wild variations of the King's Gambit where White often sacrifices a piece to gain an attack, as in the Pierce Gambit or Allgaier Gambit. I could avoid these lines with 1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6, of course, but I also like to play the Adalaide Counter-Gambit with 1.e4 e5 2.f4 Nc6 3.Nf3 f5! -- against which I think White's best reply is 3.Nc3! bringing us to the seemingly unavoidable complications of the Pierce Gambit and related lines, where I know that a strong player has something prepared. What's the fun of springing the Adelaide Counter-Gambit on your opponent if he can simply turn the tables with 3.Nc3! To my mind, only one choice exists: we must find a way to turn the tables back again!

The solution seems to be a line I like to call my Anti-Pierce Defense: 1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.f4 Bb4!? which, while perfectly logical, is so rare that it has completely vanished from the books. That makes it the perfect surprise weapon!

Game 1


The Complicated Blunder 4.fxe5?

 

Tango44 (2274) - goeller [C25]

ICC 3 0 u/Internet Chess Club 2008


1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. f4 Bb4!? 4. fxe5?

I have seen this blunder many times, especially playing blitz on ICC, but never by such a high-rated blitz player. Interestingly, he almost succeeds in turning his error into a "mammoth trap"! In any event, he proves his rating by winning on the clock!

 

4... Bxc3 5. bxc3!?

Similar is 5. dxc3 Qh4+ 6. g3? (6. Ke2 Nxe5!) 6... Qxe4+ 7. Qe2 Qxh1 8. Nf3 d5! 9. exd6+ (9. Kf2 Bg4 10. Bg2 Qxh2!) 9... Kf8! (9... Kd8?? 10. dxc7+ Kxc7 11. Bf4+ Kd8 12. O-O-O+) 10. dxc7 Bg4 11. Kf2 Re8 12. Qd3 Bxf3 13. Qxf3 Qxf3+ 14. Kxf3 Ne5+ 15. Kg2 Rc8 16. Bf4 f6 and Black should win.

 

5... Qh4+ 6. g3!?

6. Ke2 Qxe4+ (6... Nxe5!?) 7. Kf2 Nxe5

 

6... Qxe4+ 7. Qe2 Qxh1!?

Black bites! One can also play simply 7... Qxe5 and White has no real compensation for the pawn.

 

8. Nf3 Nh6!?

Probably best is 8... d5! 9. exd6+ Kd8! -- Black needs to do something active or risk getting his queen trapped.

 

9. Ba3! d6!

The only way! If Black does not open up lines, his Queen will soon be lost.

 

10. exd6+

10. O-O-O Bg4 11. Bg2 Qxh2!

 

10... Kd8 11. O-O-O Re8!

11... Bg4 12. dxc7+ Kxc7 13. Bg2 Qxh2 14. Bd6+ Kd7 15. Be5 Qh5 16. Qd3+ Ke7 17. Bxg7

 

12. dxc7+ Kxc7!

12... Kd7 13. Qd3+ mates.

 

13. Qxe8 Qxf3 14. Be2

14. Qf8 Qxd1+! 15. Kxd1 Bg4+

 

14... Qd5 15. c4 Qa5?!

I have played well up to this point, despite my surprise at finding the path more difficult than I'd ever imagined. But now comes a series of blunders in time pressure.

 

After 15... Qe5! Black has little trouble securing the win.

 

16. Kb2 Rb8 17. Qf8 Be6??

17... Qe5+

 

18. Qd6+?

18. Bd6+! wins.

 

18... Kc8 19. Qf8+ Kc7??

19... Qd8 keeps some edge for Black.

 

20. Qxg7?

20. Bd6+! again wins.

 

20... Nf5 21. Qf6 Qe5+ 22. Qxe5+ Nxe5 23. d4 Ng6 24. d5 Bd7 25. c5 Kd8 26. c6 bxc6+ 27. Kc1 cxd5 28. Rxd5 Ne3 29. Rd3

Black forfeits on time in what is still an advantageous position after 29...Nc4. I am really just no good at Blitz, even if I do enjoy it! But the game is useful nonetheless for showing how Black can deal with the complications if White does not simply resign on move 6 -- as many of my opponents do!

1-0

Game 2


The Critical 4.Nf3

P. Abend - Bert Hollmann [C25]

BRD-NWL Herford/Monheim 1992


1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. f4 Bb4 4. Nf3 Nf6!?

I hesitate to label this move dubious "?!" -- though that may well be the correct verdict. Anyone interested in this line should analyze the alternatives:

a) 4... exf4! may be the correct move here: 5. Nd5 (5. d4!? Nf6! 6. d5 Nxe4 7. dxc6 Nxc3 8. bxc3 (8. Qd4 Qe7+) 8... Bxc3+ 9. Bd2 Qe7+ 10. Be2 Bxa1 11. Qxa1 O-O 12. cxd7 Bxd7 13. Qe5 Rfe8) 5... Nf6 (5... Nge7!? 6. Nxb4 Nxb4 7. c3 (7. d4 d5 8. e5 Bf5) 7... Nbc6 8. d4 d5! 9. Bd3 (9. e5 Ng6) 9... dxe4 10. Bxe4 Ng6 11. O-O O-O=) 6. Nxb4 Nxb4 7. c3 Nc6 8. Qc2 d5 looks the most promising.

b) 4... d6?! is the passive way of treating the position, sometimes played in the 19th century. Besides an immediate f5 push, White has simply 5. Bb5

c) 4... Bxc3 only has independent significance if Black follows up with a move other than 5...Nf6, transposing -- but his fifth move alternatives are not promising:

5. dxc3 (5. bxc3 Qe7?! 6. fxe5 Nxe5 7. d4 Nxf3+ 8. Qxf3 d5 (8... Nf6?! 9. Bd3 d5 10. e5 Ne4 11. O-O! (11. Bxe4 Qh4+) 11... Nxc3 12. Bd2) 9. e5 Be6 10. Bd3 c6?! (10... Qh4+! 11. g3 Qh3 at least clears the e7 square for Black's Knight to develop. 12. c4 O-O-O) 11. Rb1 b5? 12. O-O! (12. Qg3 f5!?) 12... h5 13. a4 a6 14. Qg3 g6 15. Ra1 Kd7? 16. axb5! Kc7 17. Ba3! Qd7 18. Bd6+ Kd8 19. Qg5+ Kc8 20. bxa6 Qd8 21. Qxd8+ Kxd8 22. a7 Nh6 23. Rfb1 1-0 Steinitz,W-Winawer,S/Baden-Baden 1870) 5... d6?! 6. Bb5 Bd7 7. O-O Nf6 8. Qd3 O-O 9. f5?! (9. fxe5! Nxe5 10. Nxe5 dxe5 11. Bg5 Bxb5 12. Qxb5) 9... a6 10. Ba4 h6 11. Bb3 Qe7 12. Kh1 Na5 13. c4 b5 14. a4 Nxb3 15. cxb3 b4 16. Bd2 a5 17. Qe2 Bc6 18. g4 Nxe4 19. Be3 Rad8 20. Rad1 f6 21. Kg1 Nc5 22. Nh4 Qf7 23. Ng6 Rfe8 24. Bxc5 dxc5 25. Qe3 Rd4 26. Qg3 Red8 27. Rxd4 Rxd4 28. h4 Qd7 29. g5 h5 30. gxf6 Rg4 31. Qxg4 hxg4 32. Ne7+ Kf7 33. Nxc6 Qxc6 34. fxg7 Kxg7 35. f6+ Kf7 36. Kh2 Qe4 37. Kg3 Qd3+ 0-1 Babic,M-Stead,K/Suncoast 1999.

5. fxe5!

a) 5. Nxe5 Bxc3 (5... O-O!? is the natural way to avoid sterile equality) 6. dxc3 Qe7! 7. Nxc6 Qxe4+ 8. Qe2 dxc6=.

 

b) 5. d3?! Qe7!? (Also good is 5... exf4 6. Bxf4 (6. e5?! Nd5) 6... d5 (6... O-O) 7. e5 d4!) 6. Be2 d5! White is pract ically playing a reversed opening, handing Black a slight initiative. 7. fxe5 Nxe5 8. O-O Nxf3+ (8... dxe4 9. Nxe4 Nxe4 10. dxe4 O-O) 9. Bxf3 Bxc3 10. bxc3 dxe4 11. dxe4 (11. Re1 O-O 12. Bxe4 Qc5+ 13. Be3 Qxc3) 11... O-O 12. Qd4 c5 13. Ba3 Nd7! 14. e5 (14. Qd5 Rb8 15. Rad1 b6) 14... Qxe5!? ( Best was 14... Re8! 15. Qf2 Nxe5 16. Bd5 Be6 17. Bxc5 Qc7 e.g.: 18. Bxe6 Rxe6 19. Bxa7?? b6) 15. Qxe5 Nxe5 16. Bd5 Be6! Black has to play actively here lest White's Bishops actually give him the edge, despite his terrible pawn structure. 17. Bxb7 (17. Bxe6 fxe6 18. Rxf8+ Rxf8 19. Bxc5 Ra8 20. Re1 Nd7 21. Bd4 Kf7 22. Rf1+ Nf6) 17... Rab8 18. Rfb1 Nd7 19. Bc6 Ne5 20. Bb5 Rbc8 21. Bc1 Nc4!? 22. a4 Nd6 23. Bd3 c4 24. Bf1 Ne4 25. Rb7 a6 26. Rb6 Ra8 27. Ba3 Rfb8 28. Rab1 Rxb6 29. Rxb6 Nxc3 30. a5 Nb5 31. Bc5 h5?! After this move, White is able to restore the material balance.(31... Bd5! 32. Kf2 f6) 32. Be2 Bd5 (32... g6 33. Bf3! wins the a-pawn.) 33. Bxh5 Rc8 34. Be3 c3 35. Rxa6 Na3 36. Bc1 Nxc2 37. Rb6 Nd4 38. a6 c2 39. a7 Ra8 40. Rb8+ Kh7 41. Rxa8 (41. Bxf7? Rxa7! 42. Bxd5 Ra1) 41... Bxa8 42. Kf2 (42. Bxf7?? Ne2+) 42... g6= 1/2-1/2 Tiller,B-Hinks Edwards,T/Birmingham ENG 2000.

 

5... Bxc3 6. dxc3!

This is on e of two critical lines for the whole variation. After this move, White develops rapidly and can exploit his two Bishops, control of the center, and better piece placement.

a) 6. bxc3?! Nxe4 7. Qe2 (7. Bc4 d5! 8. exd6 Nxd6 (8... cxd6!? 9. Bd5 (9. O-O d5!) 9... Nf6 10. Qe2+ Ne7 11. Bb3 O-O=) 9. Qe2+ Qe7 10. Qxe7+ Nxe7 11. Bb3 b6 12. Ba3 Ba6 13. d3 c5 14. O-O-O O-O-O 15. Rhe1 Ng6 16. Ng5 Rd7= and the two Bishops have been neutralized and Black has the better structure.) 7... d5! gives Black good play.(7... Ng5!? 8. d4 Nxf3+ 9. Qxf3 (9. gxf3!?) 9... Qh4+ 10. g3 Qe7 11. Bd3 d6 12. Ba3 Be6 13. Rb1) 8. exd6 (8. Ba3!?) 8... O-O 9. dxc7 Qd7 10. Qd3 Qg4! (10... Re8!? 11. Qxd7 Bxd7 12. Be2 Rac8 13. O-O Nxc3 14. dxc3 Rxe2 15. Bf4 Rxc2 16. Rad1 Bg4) 11. Rg1 (11. Be2 Qxg2 12. Rf1 Re8 13. Ba3 Bg4!) 11... Re8 12. Be2 Bf5!? (12... Qf4 13. Ba3 Qxc7) 13. Qc4 Ne5!? 14. Nxe5 (14. c8=Q Nxf3+! 15. Bxf3 Raxc8 16. Bxg4 Rxc4 17. Bf3 (17. Bxf5? Nxc3+ 18. Kf2 Rf4+ 19. Kg3 Ne2+ 20. Kh3 Nxg1+ 21. Kg3 Ne2+ 22. Kh3 Rxf5) 17... Nxc3+ 18. Kf1 Na4 19. c3 Nc5) 14... Qh4+! 15. g3 Qxh2 16. Rf1 (16. Qd4? Rxe5 17. Qd8+? Re8) 16... Qxg3+ 17. Kd1 Qxe5 18. d4 Nxc3+ 19. Kd2 Qxe2+ 20. Kxc3 Qxc2+ 21. Kb4 a5+ 22. Kc5 b6+ 0-1 Bernstein,O-John,W/Berlin 1902.

 

b) 6. exf6 Bxf6 7. d4 Qe7

 

6... Nxe4 7. Qd5! f5 8. Bc4

8. Bd3!? also seems adequate for an edge: 8... Ne7 9. Qc4 d5 10. exd6 Nxd6 11. Qb3 c6 12. Bg5 h6 13. Bh4 g5 14. Bf2 Qa5 15. O-O-O Qd5 16. c4 Qf7 17. Rhe1 Be6 18. Qa3 Ndc8 19. Re2 Bxc4 20. Ne5 Bxd3 21. Nxf7 Bxe2 22. Nxh8 Bxd1 23. Kxd1 Nd5 24. Ng6 Kd7 25. Ne5+ Ke6 26. Nd3 Nd6 27. Nc5+ Kf7 28. Qh3 Kg6 29. g4 fxg4 30. Qxg4 Nf5 31. Qe4 Rd8 32. Qe6+ Nf6+ 33. Kc1 Rd6 34. Qc8 b6 35. Nd3 Ne7 36. Ne5+ Kg7 37. Qa6 Re6 38. Nd3 Ned5 39. Qxa7+ Re7 40. Qa4 c5 41. Be1 Kg6 42. Bc3 Ne4 43. Qc6+ Ndf6 44. Bxf6 Nxf6 1-0 Lasanda,M-Papagorasz,T/Sarospatak 1994.

 

8... Qe7










9. Be3!

This seems the best alternative:

a) 9. Bd3?! d6 (9... Nf6!? 10. Qb3 d6) 10. Bxe4 Be6 11. Qd3 fxe4 12. Qxe4 O-O!? (12... dxe5! 13. Nxe5 Nxe5 14. Qxe5 O-O) 13. Bg5 (13. exd6! Qxd6 14. Ng5!?) 13... Qf7 14. O-O-O dxe5 (14... Bf5!) 15. Nxe5 Nxe5 16. Qxe5 Rae8 17. Qg3 Bxa2! 18. b3 Bxb3 19. cxb3 Qxb3 20. Rd2 Rf5 21. Bh4?? (21. Bh6) 21... Ra5 and Black won. 0-1 Matlin,A-Goeller,M/Kenilworth, NJ USA 2007 (though even better was 21... Rb5!).

b) 9. O-O Rf8 10. Nd4 Nxd4 11. cxd4 c6 12. Qa5 d5 13. exd6 Qxd6 14. Be3 Be6

9... Rf8?!

Black must be able to improve on this, e.g.: 9... d6!? 10. O-O-O (10. e6?! g6! 11. O-O Nf6 12. Qb5 a6 13. Qa4 Bxe6 14. Rae1 Bxc4 15. Qxc4 d5) 10... dxe5 11. Bb5 Bd7 12. Bxc6 Bxc6 13. Qxe5 Rf8 (13... Qxe5 14. Nxe5 Ke7 15. Nxc6+ bxc6 16. Bf4 Rac8 17. g4!) 14. Rhe1 Qxe5 15. Nxe5 Rf6 16. g4.

 

10. O-O-O b6 11. Bb5 Bb7 12. e6!

This move practically wins a piece by disrupting the support for the Knight at c6.

Another way to exploit the c6 and e6 squares is by 12. Nd4!? Nd8 (12... Qxe5 13. Qxe5+ Nxe5 14. Ne6) (12... O-O-O 13. Bxc6 dxc6 14. Nxc6!) 13. Nxf5 Bxd5 14. Nxe7 Kxe7 15. Rxd5.

 

12... O-O-O 13. exd7+ Rxd7 14. Qxd7+! Qxd7 15. Rxd7 Kxd7 16. Ne5+ Kd6 17. Nxc6 Bxc6 18. Rd1+ Bd5 19. c4 c6 20. Ba6! f4 21. Bg1 g5 22. cxd5 cxd5 23. Bb7 Rf5 24. c4 Nf6 25. Bc8 Nd7 26. Bxd7 Kxd7 27. Rxd5+ Rxd5 28. cxd5 Kd6 29. Kd2 Kxd5 30. Kd3 h5 31. Bf2 h4 32. h3 Ke5 33. b4 Kf5 34. a4 g4 35. Bxh4 f3 36. hxg4+ Kxg4 37. gxf3+ Kxf3 38. b5 Kg4 39. Bf2 Kf5 40. a5 bxa5 1-0


Game 3


The Tricky 4.Qg4!?

SugarMagnolia (2636) - goeller [C25]

ICC 2 2 u/Internet Chess Club 2006


1. e4 e5 2. f4 Nc6 3. Nc3

Transposing to the Vienna Gambit. This is the typical way I reach this position. The alternative is complicated: 3. Nf3 f5 4. exf5 (4. fxe5 fxe4) 4... e4 5. Ne5 Nf6.

 

3... Bb4!?

3... exf4 4. Nf3 g5 5. d4 g4 6. Bc4 gxf3 7. O-O Nxd4

 

4. Qg4!?

Probably the best attempt at an outright refutation of Black's last move.

a) 4. Nd5 Nf6!? 5. Nxb4 (5. Nf3 exf4 6. Nxb4 Nxb4 7. c3 (7. e5 Nh5 8. d4 d6) 7... Nc6 8. e5 Nh5 9. d4 d6 10. Bb5 O-O) 5... Nxb4 6. c3 (6. Nf3 exf4 7. e5 Qe7 8. d4) (6. fxe5 Nxe4 7. Nf3 Ng5!) 6... Nc6 (6... Nxe4? 7. cxb4 Qh4+ 8. g3 Nxg3 9. Nf3 Qh6 10. Rg1 Nxf1 11. Rxf1 exf4 12. Qe2+) 7. fxe5 Nxe5 (7... Nxe4 8. Qg4 Ng5 9. d4 h6 10. h4 d5 11. Qg3 Ne6) 8. d4 Ng6 9. e5 Ne4 10. Bd3 d5 11. Nf3 f5!? seems playable.

b) 4. Nf3 exf4!? (4... Bxc3 5. dxc3! exf4!?) 5. Nd5 Nf6

 

4... Nf6 5. Qxg7 Rg8 6. Qh6 Nd4! 7. fxe5

7. Bd3 Rg6 8. Qh4 Rxg2

 

7... Rg6 8. Qh4 Nxc2+!?

Safer may be 8... Ng4! 9. Qxd8+ Kxd8 10. Rb1 Nxc2+ 11. Kd1 Nd4 12. Nh3 Nxe5 13. Nd5 Bf8

 

9. Kd1 Nxa1 10. exf6 Bxc3?!

a) 10... Qxf6 11. Qxf6 Rxf6 12. Nge2!? and it looks like White basically wins with b3, Bb2, and Bxa1 etc.

b) 10... c6! 11. e5 Bf8 12. b3 d6 13. Bb2 Nxb3 14. axb3 dxe5 15. Nf3 Be6 16. Nxe5 Bxb3+ 17. Kc1 Rxf6 18. Qxh7 Qe7 19. Bc4 Bxc4 20. Nxc4 O-O-O

 

11. bxc3!

11. dxc3?! d5!

 

11... Rxf6?

11... d5 12. Bb2 Qxf6 13. Qxf6 Rxf6 14. Be2 (14. exd5 Rxf1+) 14... dxe4 15. Bxa1 Rd6 16. Kc2 Be6

 

12. Nf3! d5 13. e5

13. Qxh7!?

 

13... Ra6??

A mouse-slip. But Black is probably busted in any event after my intended 13... Rb6 14. Qxh7 Qe7 15. Qh8+ Qf8 16. Qxf8+ Kxf8 17. Ba3+ Kg8 18. Kc1 Bf5 19. d3 and White has a winning edge after Bb2 and Bxa1.

 

14. Bxa6

Black resigns

1-0

Game 4


Counter-Attack with 4.Nd5

Saviely Tartakower - Fedor Dus Chotimirsky [C25]

St Petersburg (Chigorin Memorial)/St Petersburg 1909


1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. f4 Bb4 4. Nd5 Bc5!?

a) 4... exf4! 5. Qg4 Bd6!? perhaps, intending ...Be5.

 

b) 4... Nf6!? is probably not as good against White's best play: 5. Nxb4 Nxb4 6. fxe5?! (White does have a way to advantage with 6. c3! Nc6 (6... Nxe4!? 7. cxb4 Qh4+ 8. g3 Nxg3 9. Nf3 Qh6 10. Rg1 Nxf1 11. Rxf1 Qxf4 (11... e4 12. Qe2 d5 13. d3 f5 14. Ne5 O-O) 12. d4 Qe4+ 13. Qe2 Qxe2+ 14. Kxe2 e4) 7. fxe5 Nxe5 8. d4 Ng6 (8... Nxe4!? 9. Qe2 d5 10. dxe5 Qh4+ 11. g3 Nxg3 12. hxg3 Qxh1 13. Be3) 9. e5 Ne4 10. Nf3 d5 11. Bd3 and White is definitely better.) 6... Nxe4 7. Nf3










7... Ng5! (and suddenly White is worse, despite playing natural moves!) 8. Be2 (8. Nxg5 Qxg5 9. d3 Qxe5+) 8... Nxf3+ 9. Bxf3 Qh4+ 10. g3 Qc4 11. b3? (11. d3 Qxc2) 11... Nxc2+ 12. Kf2 Qd4+ 13. Kg2 Nxa1 14. Ba3 c5?! (14... Qd3!) 15. Qc1 Qd3! 16. Qxc5? Qxd2+ 17. Kf1? d6 18. Qxd6? Bh3+ 19. Kg1? Qe3# Matlin - Goeller, 5-minute game Kenilworth 2007.

 

5. Nf3

5. Qg4! is probably White's best try for an edge: 5... Kf8!? 6. fxe5 d6 7. Qg3 dxe5.

 

5... d6 6. c3 a6!? 7. d4 exd4 8. cxd4 Ba7 9. Bc4 Nf6 10. Nxf6+ Qxf6 11. e5 dxe5 12. fxe5 Qe7 13. O-O Bg4 14. Bg5?!

14. Be3 Nxe5!

 

14... Qd7!

Black avoids speculative material grabs:

a) 14... Bxf3 15. Qxf3 Qxg5 16. Qxf7+ Kd8

b) 14... Qxg5!? 15. Bxf7+ Ke7

 

15. Kh1?!

15. Be3 O-O-O

 

15... Nxd4! 16. e6 fxe6 17. Re1?

White is desperately trying to complicate, but Black is simply winning material here.

 

17... Nxf3 18. Qxf3? Bxf3 19. Bxe6 Qxe6!

The simplest solution -- why be greedy with 19... Qd4?

 

20. Rxe6+ Kf7 21. Re7+ Kg6 22. gxf3 Kxg5 23. Rxg7+ Kh6 24. Rxc7 Rhg8 25. Rxb7 Rg6 26. Rd1 Rd8 27. Re1 Bf2 28. Rf1 Rd2 29. Rb4 Bd4 30. Rb1 a5 31. Ra4 Rc6 32. Rxa5 Rcc2 33. Ra6+ Kg7 0-1


Game 5


The Vienna Solution 4.Bc4 Nf6 5.Nf3

Rudolf Spielmann - Rudolf Swiderski [C25]

Scheveningen 1905


1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. f4 Bb4 4. Bc4 Nf6 5. Nf3 Nxe4! 6. fxe5

6. Nxe4 d5 7. Bb5 dxe4 8. Nxe5 O-O! 9. Nxc6 bxc6 10. Bxc6 Qh4+! (10... Rb8) 11. g3 Qh3 12. Qe2 (12. Bxa8? Qg2 13. Rf1 Ba6!) 12... Rb8

 

6... Bxc3 7. dxc3 Qe7

7... Nxe5?! 8. Nxe5 Qh4+ 9. g3 Nxg3 10. Bxf7+

 

8. Qd5 Nf6! 9. Qxf7+

9. Qd3 Nxe5

 

9... Qxf7 10. Bxf7+ Kxf7 11. exf6 Re8+! 12. Kf2 gxf6!?

Though structurally weakening, the pawn recapture helps to secure critical squares. Black easily holds equality by posting his Knight to e5.

 

13. Bf4 d6 14. Rhe1 Bd7 15. Rxe8 Rxe8 16. Re1 Be6 17. Nd4 Ne5! 18. b3 Bd7 19. h3 Rg8 20. c4 c5 21. Ne2 Bc6 22. g3 Bd7 23. h4 Bc6 24. Rd1 Ke6 25. Nc3 a6 26. a4 h5 27. Rd2 Re8 28. Kf1 Rb8 29. Kf2 b6 30. Rd1 Ng4+ 31. Kf1 Ne5 32. Kf2 Rb7 33. Rd2 Rb8 34. Rd1 Rb7 35. Rd2 Rd7 36. Rd1 Ng4+ 37. Kf1 Nh2+ 38. Kf2 Ng4+ 39. Kf1 Nh2+ 40. Kf2 Ng4+ 41. Kf1 Bf3 42. Rd3 Bc6 43. Rd1 Nh2+ 44. Kf2 Ng4+ 45. Kf1 Nh2+ 46. Kf2 Ng4+ 47. Kf1 Ne5 48. Kf2 Ng6 49. Be3 Ne5 50. Bf4 Ng4+ 51. Kf1 Ne5 52. Kf2 d5?

The players should simply agree to a draw, but obviously Spielmann was unwilling to concede so Black strove for simplification. However, this move is very risky.

 

53. cxd5+ Bxd5 54. Bxe5! fxe5

54... Kxe5 55. Nxd5 Rxd5 56. Rxd5+ Kxd5 57. Kf3 Ke5 58. g4!

 

55. Nxd5 Rxd5 56. Rxd5 Kxd5 57. g4! hxg4 58. Kg3! Ke4

58... Ke6 59. Kxg4 Kf6 60. h5

 

59. Kxg4 Ke3 60. h5 e4 61. h6 Kd2 62. h7 e3 63. h8=Q e2 64. Qh2 Kd1 65. Qd6+ Kxc2 66. Qe5 Kd2 67. Qd5+ Kc2 68. Qe6 Kd2

And here, unable to find the winning plan, Spielmann conceded a draw. It appears that White can win by 69.a5! after which he is able to gather up the remaining Black pawns.

1/2-1/2

Game 6


The Vienna Solution 4.Bc4 Nf6 5.d3

Alexander Kotov - Vasily N Panov [C25]

Moscow Championship/Moscow (2) 1945


1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. f4 Bb4 4. Bc4 Nf6 5. d3 d5!

Black already has the initiative. The alternative 5... d6 seems a waste of a tempo, as demonstrated here: 6. Nf3 d5! 7. exd5 Nxd5 8. Bxd5 Qxd5 9. O-O Bxc3 10. bxc3 O-O 11. fxe5 Nxe5 12. Nxe5 Qxe5 13. d4 Qd5 14. Qd3 c5 15. Bf4 Bf5 16. Qg3 cxd4 17. Be5 Bg6 18. Bxd4 f6 19. h4 Rae8 20. Rae1 Qxa2 21. Rxe8 Rxe8 22. h5 Bxh5 23. Rxf6 Bg6 24. Rd6 Qf7 25. Qg5 Qe7 26. Qxe7 Rxe7 27. Bxa7 Bxc2 28. Bd4 Be4 29. Rb6 Bc6 30. Rb2 h6 31. Rf2 Kh7 32. Kh2 Kg6 1/2-1/2 Ohlzon,N-Hammer,J/Gausdal 2003.

 

6. exd5 Nxd5 7. Nge2

White has had less success with 7. Bxd5 Qxd5 8. Qf3 Qc5 9. Bd2 Nd4 10. Qd1 exf4 (10... Bf5!? 11. a3 Bxc3 12. Bxc3 O-O-O 13. Ne2 Bg4 14. Bxd4 Rxd4 15. h3 Bxe2 16. Qxe2 Rxf4 17. Rf1 Rxf1+ 18. Kxf1 f5 19. Re1 e4 20. dxe4 fxe4 21. Qg4+ Kb8 22. Qxe4 Rf8+ 23. Ke2 a6 24. Kd1 Qg5 25. Re3 Rf2 26. Qd4 Rf1+ 27. Ke2 Qxg2+ 0-1 Jea,A-Podziemski,A) 11. a3 Bxc3 12. Bxc3 O-O 13. Bxd4 Qxd4 14. c3 Re8+ 15. Kf1 Qd5 16. Qd2 Bf5 17. d4 Re3 18. Re1 Rae8 19. Rxe3 Rxe3 20. h4 h5 21. Rh2 Qe6 22. Nf3 Bd3+ 23. Kg1 Qe4 24. Rh1 Re2 25. Qc1 Qg6 26. Ng5 f6 27. Qxf4 fxg5 28. hxg5 Re1+ 29. Kh2 Qd6 30. Qxd6 Rxh1+ 31. Kxh1 cxd6 32. Kh2 Kf7 33. Kg3 Ke6 34. Kf4 g6 35. b3 Bc2 1/2-1/2 Bohne,O-Schur/St Petersburg 1992.

 

7... Bg4 8. Qd2!

Kotov comes up with the most challenging move for Black. Again, not to be recommended is 8. Bxd5 Qxd5 9. O-O Qc5+ 10. Kh1 O-O-O 11. Ne4 Qd5 12. N2c3 Bxd1 13. Nxd5 Bxc2 14. Nxb4 Nxb4 15. fxe5 Bxd3 16. Bd2 Nc2 0-1 as in the game Davis-McCarty.

 

8... Nb6

8... Nxc3! 9. Nxc3 (9. bxc3 Bc5 10. Bb5 Qh4+ 11. g3 Qf6!) 9... Na5 10. fxe5 Qd4

 

9. Bb5 Qh4+ 10. Ng3 O-O 11. Bxc6 exf4 12. Qxf4 Bd6 13. Qf2 bxc6 14. Nge4 Qxf2+ 15. Kxf2 Be5 16. Be3 f5 17. Ng5 Nd5 18. Nxd5 cxd5 19. h3 Bh5 20. c3 Rfe8 21. Rhe1 h6 22. Nf3 Bd6 23. g3 g5 24. b4 Bxg3+ 25. Kxg3 Rxe3 26. Rxe3 f4+ 27. Kg2 fxe3 28. Re1 Re8 29. Nd4 Kh7 30. Nb5 Re7 31. Nxa7 e2 32. Kf2 Rf7+ 33. Ke3 c5

33... Rf3+ 34. Kxe2 Rxh3+ 35. Kd2 Rh2+ 36. Ke3 Rxa2

 

34. Nc6 d4+ 35. cxd4 cxb4 36. d5!? Rf3+ 37. Kd2 Rf5 38. Ne7 Rf6 39. Nc6 Kg7 40. Nxb4 Kf7 41. a4 Rf4 42. Kc3 Ke7 43. a5 Rf1 44. Nc2 Bf3 45. Kd4 Kd6 46. a6 Rxe1 47. Nxe1 Bxd5 48. Ke3 Kc7 49. Kxe2 Be6 50. h4 gxh4 51. Kf2 1/2-1/2

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