Consultation Game 2008

By Michael Goeller

The Kenilworth Chess Club held its Third Annual Consultation Game beginning May 15, 2008. About 20 players participated, with 10 per team. The White pieces were directed by FM Steve Stoyko and a number of other players, including myself, Max Sherer, and Greg Tomkovich. The Black pieces were directed by NM Mark Kernighan and NM Scott Massey along with Mark Bilenky, John Moldovan, Joe Demetrick, Mike Wojcio and a number of other players. As I only witnessed the White side, my notes mostly reflect that side of the board. Interestingly, the opening was similar to that played in a number of John Moldovan's games, as discussed on his "Chess Coroner" blog -- including a recent one against Max Sherer (who is studying with Stoyko). Some of the notes below are drawn from Moldovan's remarks on his own games with the line.

While FM Stoyko moved the pieces on the demo board and led the discussion for the White side (see image above), he was remarkably hands-off in dictating the course of play, even allowing us to pursue a rather wild line (with an early g4 advance) which he disapproved -- saying "I would never play this, but it's reasonable."

The game will be finished next week.

Stoyko, Goeller, Sherer, Tomkovich et. al. -- Massey, Kernighan, Bilenky, Moldovan, et. al. [E33]

Consultation Game/Kenilworth, NJ USA 2008


1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Qc2 Nc6 5. Nf3

On 5. e3 Black has the immediate, equalizing 5... e5 6. d5 Ne7= Moldovan

 

5... d6 6. Bg5

6. Bd2 e5 7. a3 Nxd4!? 8. Nxd4 exd4 9. axb4 dxc3 10. Bxc3 O-O=

 

6... h6

Black has other moves which may be better:

a) 6... Qe7!? 7. a3 Bxc3+ 8. Qxc3 a5?! 9. b3?! (9. e4 h6 10. Bxf6 Qxf6 11. e5) 9... e5 10. dxe5 dxe5 11. e3 Ne4 12. Bxe7 Nxc3 13. Bh4 Bf5 14. Bg3 f6 15. Nh4 Be6 16. Bd3? e4? (16... O-O-O 17. Bf5 Bxf5 18. Nxf5 g6 was right. - F) 17. Bf1 g5!? 18. Rc1 (Better was 18. Bxc7 gxh4 M 19. Kd2! Nd5 20. cxd5 Bxd5 21. Rb1 F) 18... Na2 19. Rc2 Nab4! 20. axb4 Nxb4 21. Rd2 gxh4? 22. Bxh4? Kf7 23. Bg3 a4! 24. bxa4 (24. Bxc7?? a3) 24... Rxa4 1/2-1/2 Sherer,M-Moldovan,J/Kenilworth, NJ 2008 (39).

 

b) 6... e5 7. d5 Bxc3+ 8. Qxc3 Nb8 9. Nd2 with an edge to white says Moldovan

7. Bd2

7. Bh4? g5 8. Bg3 g4 would've won the d4P. - M

 

7... O-O

White also does well after 7... Qe7 8. e3!

8. d5 Bxc3 (8... exd5! 9. Nxd5 Nxd5 10. cxd5 Bxd2+ 11. Qxd2 Ne5 12. Nd4 O-O= Herraiz - Del Rio : Merida, ESP 2005) 9. Qxc3! (9. Bxc3 exd5 10. cxd5 Nxd5! 11. Bxg7 Ncb4 Kernighan = K 12. Qb1 M 12... Rg8 13. Bxh6 Qf6) 9... Ne5? (This leads to a bad ending. 9... Nb8= was right.) 10. Nxe5 dxe5 11. Qxe5 exd5 12. Qxe7+ Kxe7 13. cxd5 Nxd5 14. e4 Nb6 15. Bb4+ 1-0 Kernighan,M-Moldovan,J/Springfield, NJ 2007/[Moldovan & Fritz 8] (50)

 

Also good, though, is 8.a3.

8... O-O 9. a3 Bxc3 10. Bxc3 e5 11. d5 (11. O-O-O!?) 11... Nb8 12. h3 a5 13. b3! c6 14. dxc6 Nxc6 15. Be2 d5 16. O-O Be6 17. Nxe5 Nxe5 18. Bxe5 Rfc8 19. Bxf6 Qxf6 20. Rac1 a4 21. c5 axb3 22. Qxb3 d4 23. Qxb7 dxe3 24. Qf3 Qxf3 25. Bxf3 Rxa3 26. c6 exf2+ 27. Rxf2 Kf8 28. Rb2 Ra7 29. Kf2 Ke7 30. Rb7+ Rc7 31. Ke3 Ra3+ 32. Kd4 Kd6 33. Rd1 Ra7 34. h4 g5 35. h5 g4 36. Ke3+ Ke7 37. Be4 f5 38. Bd5 Bxd5 39. Rxa7 Rxa7 40. Rxd5 Rc7 41. Rc5 Kd6 42. Rc2 Ke5 43. g3 Kd5 44. Kf4 Ke6 45. Rc5 Kd6 46. Rxf5 Kxc6 47. Rf6+ Kd5 48. Rxh6 Rg7 49. Rg6 Rh7 50. Kxg4 Ke5 51. Kg5 1-0 Ivanov,S-Bjork,C/Sweden 2001.

 

8. O-O-O

Stoyko did not want to dictate the course of play but just keep us within reasonable bounds with his advice. He thought the plan of O-O-O followed by a speedy kingside advance was fully justified by Black's early h6. But, in his view, there was no need to rush things. Better to first secure the two Bishops (with a3), lock things up, and then slowly advance on the kingside, when Black's counterplay would be limited, especially since all endgames favor White's Bishops. A good example of Stoyko's preferred strategy might be the following game:

8. a3! Bxc3 9. Bxc3 (this was Stoyko's preference here or on the next move, when the two Bishops give White a lasting edge) 9... Qe7 10. h3 (10. O-O-O e5 11. e3 and Stoyko points out that Black basically has the bad side of a reversed French.) 10... e5 11. d5 Nb8 12. g4 Nh7 13. e4 (only now this advance, to stop any f5 breaks) 13... Re8 14. Rg1 Nd7 15. h4 Ndf8 16. h5 Ng5 17. Nxg5 hxg5 18. Be2 a5 19. b4 axb4 20. axb4 Rxa1+ 21. Bxa1 Bd7 22. Kf1 Ra8 23. Kg2 Qe8 24. Bc3 Ra3 25. Rb1 Qc8 26. Kg3 c6 27. Qb2 Qa8 28. Ra1 Rxa1 29. Qxa1 Qxa1? 30. Bxa1 (Now White's endgame edge due to the two Bishops is very clear.) 30... cxd5 31. exd5 Ba4 32. Bb2 Nd7 33. Bc1 f6 34. f3 Kf7 35. Be3 Bb3 36. Kf2 b5 37. c5! Bxd5 38. Bxb5 Nb8 39. cxd6 Ke6 40. Bc5 Nc6 41. Ke3 1-0 Gurevich,M-Palliser,R/Port Erin 2007.

 

8... Qe7 9. g4!?

Steve thought this move was a bit reckless and premature, but it was the fan favorite and I led the cheers for it. Obviously, White is spurred on by ...h6 and the opposite side castled position to start an attack.










9... e5

We rejected 9... Nxg4!? simply on general principles. But it can get complicated: 10. Rg1 Bxc3! ( we had calculated only 10... Nxf2? 11. Bxh6 Nxd1?? 12. Rxg7+ Kh8 13. Qh7# by way of example of what risks Black runs with 9...Nxg4) 11. bxc3 (11. Bxc3 Nxf2 12. d5 Ne5 13. Nxe5 dxe5) 11... f5! 12. Rg2! (12. h3 Nxf2 13. Bxh6 Rf7) 12... Kf7 (12... Kh8? 13. h3 Nf6 14. Nh4) 13. e4! gives White plenty of initiative for the pawn.

 

10. g5 Bxc3?!

10... hxg5 11. dxe5 (11. Nxg5 Bxc3 12. Bxc3 exd4 13. Bxd4 Nxd4 14. Rxd4 Qe5) 11... dxe5 12. Bxg5 (12. Nxg5 Nd4 13. Nd5 Nxc2 14. Nxe7+ Bxe7 15. Kxc2) 12... Bxc3 13. Qxc3 Ne4 14. Bxe7 Nxc3 15. Bxf8 Nxd1 16. Bxg7! Nxf2 17. Rg1

 

11. Bxc3 hxg5 12. dxe5 Nxe5?!

We thought that this move, giving up the center and exposing the Knight at f6 to exchange, was wrong.

12... dxe5 13. Nxg5

 

13. Nxg5

a) 13. h4! Nxf3 14. exf3 g4 15. h5 Re8 16. h6 g6 17. Bd3

b) 13. Nxe5!? dxe5 14. h4 g4 15. h5

 

13... Bg4 14. Rg1 Bh5 15. Bh3 Bg6 16. Bf5

Now all of White's forces are active.

 

16... Bxf5 17. Qxf5 Qd7 18. Qf4

We had a very tough time deciding between this and 18. Qc2

 

18... Ng6 19. Qf3 Qc6










20. Qh3

a) Stoyko though best was 20. Bxf6! Qxf3 21. Nxf3 gxf6 22. Nd4 with the much better ending for White due to his outside passed pawn, good Rook placement, and excellent squares for his Knight. But we refused to believe that exchanging into an ending with equal material was White's best. We still wanted to attack.

b) 20. Qxc6 bxc6 21. Bxf6 gxf6 22. Ne4 looks even stronger, but is not as good as 20.Bxf6! since Black is better off with the pawn at c6.

 

20... Nf4!

Playing quickly due to the 60 minutes per side limit, we overlooked this shot. During the game, we felt that Black completely steals the initiative after this, but a closer look suggests that White is still much better.

 

21. Qf1! Qxc4 22. Kb1

White still has lots of attack despite Black's apparent counterplay. Fritz points out the surprising idea 22. Rd4! Nxe2+ 23. Kd2! which may well be winning.

 

22... Qxe2?!

a) 22... N4d5 23. Rxd5 Nxd5 24. Bxg7!

b) 22... N6d5 23. Bxg7 Kxg7 24. Rd4 Qxe2 25. Qc1

c) 22... Qb5!? 23. Bxf6 Qf5+ 24. Ka1 Qxf6 25. e3 Ng6 26. Qh3

 

23. Bxf6 Qxf1 24. Rdxf1 gxf6 25. Ne6+ Ng6 26. Nxf8

26. Nxc7!?

 

26... Kxf8 27. f4

27. Rg3!

 

27... Re8 28. f5 Ne5 29. h4 Ke7 30. h5 Rh8 31. Rh1










and in this position Black sealed a move. White is up the Exchange and has an outside passed pawn, but it is a very tough ending to win. I look forward to seeing how White tries to make progress.

 

 

Steve makes the last move for White and we await Black's sealed move. What's the best plan?

*

download pgn

Game in PGN

Copyright © 2008 by Michael Goeller