Sunday, May 25, 2014

First Win Never Dies

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N. Sabturani - E. Wave
Sulu Chess Club
June 23, 2007

This game is important to me because this is the very first win I ever get against a very strong player in Jolo, Sulu. Before this, Nash Sabturani always gave me hard beatings at the board.

To prove that Nash is indeed strong until today, he'd just won the Rapid Tournament in Taguig, Metro Manila just recently.

You can play through the game below on an embedded game board.

1.e4            c5
2.Nf3          d6 
3.d4            cxd4 
4.Nxd4       Nf6 
5.Nc3         e6 
6.Be3         a6 
7.Qe2         Be7 
8.O-O-O    O-O 
9.g4            b5 
10.g5          Nfd7 
11.f4           b4 

So far so good, opposite side castling in a game is always very thrilling. Both sides attack the King with everything one gets. The adrenaline rush starts in full force.

12...             Bb7 
13.Bg2        Qa5 

That was suspicious. The a2 pawn now is now lost.

14...             Rc8 
15.Qe2       Qxa2 
16.h4           Nc5 
17.e5            d5 
18.h5            Nc6 
19.Nxc6       Nb3+

Opening up the King at the expense of a piece before taking the c6 Knight. It won't go anywhere anyway. The control of the seventh rank is of paramount significance.

20.cxb3       Rxc6+ 
21.Kd2        Qxb2+ 
22.Ke1        Rc2 
23.Nd2        a5 

Black king is now in danger.

24...             Ba6

If  24...a4 then 25.bxa4 Bc6

25.gxf7+       Kxf7

Here I had foreseen that some of my pieces would become shaky. But I decided to make a bait out of them. Desperate situations called for desperate measure.

26.Qg4          Rac8 

27.Bf3 should be considered here, and it looks like a very strong defensive move, but Nash is hell-bent for an attack on my exposed King.

27...                d4 

I threw all my cards on this pawn push. I had foreseen this gamble few moves ago which must win, if Nash were not careful, and became materialistic.

28.Qxe6+        Kf8 
29.Qxa6          dxe3 

That's a big blunder. The Rook is not for free. 30.Bf5 is the only rescuing move, followed up with 30...exd2+ 31.Ke2, when the Black attack should lay dead on its track.

30...                 Rxd2

To Nash surprise, I was threatening mate on the move which compelled the following sequence:

31.Qd3            Rxd3 
32.Rxd3          Qf2+ 

32...Bh4+! was the shorter go at it, for example: 33.Rxh4 Qf2+ 34.Kd1 e2+ 35.Kc1 e1=Q+ 36.Rd1 Qfd2+ 37.Kb1 Qexd1#.

33.Kd1 Qf3+
34. Resigns  


But he resigns anyway. Imagine how happy I was that time. I managed to win against him twice in two years. In 2009, we seem to be of equal footing already. Either I become stronger, or he got weaker.

Play through this game here:

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