By Michael Goeller
I recently discovered an old chess scorebook of mine from a time when I played a lot of serious chess and it seemed like every other game I played was a Smith-Morra Gambit. I am impressed by my youthful creativity and have a sudden nostalgic desire to play the Smith-Morra again.
Game One: The Fianchetto Line
Michael Goeller (1958) - Floyd Boudreaux (2190) [B21]
Lipkin-Pfefferkorn Open/Winston Salem, NC USA (5) 1981
Going into the last round of a 1981 Grand Prix tournament, I needed only a draw to make it into the money. I should have gotten the advantage early on but missed a nice shot. I ended up finding an ingenious way of forcing a draw in the end, though, to bring home some bucks. I have my opponent's name as "Bourdeax," but after some research I think it was probably Floyd Boudreaux. I remember driving down to this North Carolina tournament with NM Scott Massey in his old Ford Mustang, playing blindfold chess along the way. I was 16-years-old at the time. I remember that the tournament was in a hotel near the middle of town, and the town was just dead that weekend with hardly a soul in sight besides us chessplayers. I remember very little else about the event, but I do remember this game very well and I'll bet I could have recreated it from memory even if I did not have the scoresheet.
White is still down a pawn, but Black's weak dark squares, lagging development, and exposed King position give excellent compensation.
Still kicking myself for missing 15.Nb5, I started to take some time to fantasize and actually conceived the combination in the game. I did this by predicting my opponent's most logical next moves. Obviously, he is planning to develop his Rook by Ra6 next move, when I would probably play Qc5, and then he should play Qd8! threatening Qb6 trying to force off the Queens or win the b-pawn. I then started to look further and a little lightbulb went off. My next two moves set up a little trap and help to lure my opponent into it.
Draw by perpetual check. I don't remember how much I won, but it was the first time I had ever won any money at a tournament and I was very excited about it.
Game Two: The Main Line
Michael Goeller (1953) - Mark Glickman (1940) [B21]
NJ Junior Championship/New Jersey USA 1981
In an earlier encounter at an inter-club team match from the same scorebook, Glickman tried 4... d6 5. Bc4 e6 6. Nf3 a6 7.
Fritz says 21. b5!
Black had a saving move that actually wins: 23... c5! blocks the Bishop's protection of the Rook and attacks the Bishop at a6, when White is in trouble: 24. Rb7+ Ka8 25. Rxb4 cxb4 26. Bb5 Rhg8!. I have this move written in the margin, so I either saw it or we found it in the post-mortem.
I can hardly believe I found this amazing resource. The Queen gets back into the attack with deadly effect.
Better 27. Qb6+! but everything wins here.
Games in PGNCopyright © 2009 by Michael Goeller