Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Night 120814 Finishes Round 5 League Action

A game of chess always makes you feel better.
Week 5 closed tonight, and we had lots of casual games played and some lessons given.
One more regular season League round to go next week – and we are going to need it! We have a 4-way tie for 1st place – in a four team league! Talk about parity.
For the final regular season week, the match-ups are:
Oilers vs 49’ers
W - Tim R – Mike N - B
B – Sam T – Dave S - W
W – Tom H – Americo M - B
B – Ted G – Marcello M - W
Thunder vs Tigers
W – Gene M – Vince V – B
B – Luke S – Paul M – W
W – Zach R – Luigi M – B
B – Brendan M – Luca M - W

It will be an exciting week of action at LCCC next week!
We also welcome two new members as Lucas S and Mason S joined us this evening!
And now I have a treat for my readers.

Author Andrew Soltis has written many a fine chess book. I am reviewing an old classic of his – “The Best Games of Boris Spassky”. I pulled this game from there. I will use his notes and any comments I or my computer Igor 3000 make during the game will be in [ ].
Boris Spassky is most famous for losing to Bobby Fischer for the World Chess Title. What people forget is that without Mr. Spassky’s class, sportsmanship and guts to stand up to the Soviet Russian government. If he hadn’t, Bobby Fischer may have sulked away defeated by his own arrogance and never been heard from again.
Of course, Fischer went on to win the World Title from Spassky - and sulked away never to be heard from again anyway.

Here is one of Mr. Spassky’s efforts – playing Black - from the USSR Championship in 1957. His opponent at the time – with White - was IM Semyon Furman, who is best known for later being one of Anatoly Karpov’s trainers.

1. Nf3              c5

About as good an answer as any other to White’s move. Spassky’s move offers White the option of playing a Sicilian Defense or an English Opening or even a reverse Gruenfeld.

2. c4                g6
3. e4                Bg7
4. d4                cd

If Black doesn’t like the Marcozy bind [White’s pawns at c4 and e4 is called the Marcozy bind], he can delay exchanges with 4. …d6 5. Nc3, Nc6 or Bg4. Spassky chooses a system credited to the late Vladimir Simagin - and known as the Simagin de-bind.

5. Nxd4           Nc6
6. Be3              Nh6 [?]
Since Black has conceded d5 to White, he uses his king’s knight to support ….f5 and to compete for control of d4. My Igor3000 suggests Qb6 for Black here for an EVEN game versus (.5).

7. Nc3             O-O
8. Be2              f5  (.5)
9. ef?                Bxd4?! (Even)

A bizarre conception. Black surrenders the one piece considered most vital to his game. But look at the alternatives: 9. ….Nxf5 10. Nxf5, Rxf5 11. Bg4 and then 12. f4 leaves White with a small but clear positional advantage. Or 9. ….Nxd4, 10. Bxd4, Bxd4 11. Qxd4, Nxf5 12. Qd2 gives White a big edge in space and a nice attacking game on the King side. 

10. Bxd4?!       Nxf5

The two bishops will not be golden to White. In fact, the Queen’s Bishop is just a clumsy piece after White’s last move. White’s black squared bishop has no good squares and must submit to self-burial at a3.

11. Bc5            d6
12. Ba3            Nfd4 (-.2)
[Igor 3000 liked 12. ….Be6 equally well] Both sides have a central d-file square to control, but Black also has the f-file for attack. White’s play begins with b4 – then b5 and Black’s begin with the doubling rooks on the half-open f-file. White’s 10th move was a positional blunder, but as usual White can get away with one.

13. O-O           Bf5
14. Rc1            Qd7
[Igor likes 12. ….Qa5. Spassky is giving back his slight edge.]

15. Nd5           Rf7
16. b3              Raf8  (.4)
White delays the advance of the b-pawn until Black has weakened his d6 pawn with e5. Then, Furman concludes b4 – b5 will undermine every strength in the Black center. But he underestimates the speed with which Black’s attack builds. 

17. Bb2            e5
18. b4?             Be6   (-.2)
Threatening 19. ….Bxd5, 20. cd, Nxe2+, and then 21...Nxb4.

19. Bd3?          ..........

This is a little hard to figure out. Furman cannot afford to remove his KB from its diagonal. The move required was 19. b5…..with a fierce fight still possible.
It’s a pity that both of Whites’ bad moves were aimed at preserving the Two Bishop ‘advantage’. Instead, it kills him. It’s enough to shake one’s basic chess principles!

Position after White's 19th move. Black to move.
19.  ........     Bg4!
This sortie on move 19 by Black wins in all lines. If White moves his Queen, he discovers the unpleasant 20. Qd2, Nf3+, 21. gf, Bxf3, 22. Qg5, Rf4 23. Nxf4, Rxf4 with the unstoppable threat of 24. ….Rg4+. 

20. f3?             Bxf3!
21. gf               Nxf3+
22. Kh1           Qh3

White’s next error allows a very pretty knight move.
23. Rf2??         Ne1!!
White resigns

24. …Rxf2 and mate by Qxh2++ is threatened. If the White rook leaves the 2nd rank, that allows …Qg2 mate. And if he leaves the f-file, then comes Rc1+ and the Queen is gone.
A pretty game by Mr. Spassky.

No comments:

Post a Comment