Wednesday, February 20, 2008

My last round game from the USATN

I was very happy with my 3-0=1 performance. My favorite game was the last round win against Tony Dutiel(1834) from the Kansas City CC A-team. He was 4-0 going into this round. His team had 3.0 points to our 2.5, so it was a "must win" round for us.

I was playing board 3. We had an early win on Board 4. It looked to me like boards 1 and 2 should at least draw. Board 1 drew, but we lost on board 2. So I had to win my game. This game was one of the last three to finish, and was surrounded by other players whose fortunes depended on this game. The pressure was on!

I spent too much time early in the game deciding if I should go for the double minor piece exchanges which prevents White from castling. I got myself into terrible time preassure and had to make several quick moves before the time control at move 30. I was especially happy with this position (Black to play) where I am down a pawn, but my pieces are extremely well placed, just look at those rooks! The Black rooks attack 15 squares, the White 6.

Click here for game replay


  1. Well done! I really like the move 29...d4!

  2. The position looks good. White is basically playing down a rook.

  3. In the diagrammed posistion doesn't Rxc3 win a piece? 1...Rxc3 2. Rxc3 Rxb2 looks winning, threatening mate on f2 and Rb1+ picking up the rook on h1

    Qg3 seems to do the trick also. Just thought it was a neat combination.

    Matt Waller

  4. First of all I would like to congratulate Ivan on his win under last round pressure. After our board 4 lost quickly I knew I had to win for the team. Of course, a win would also win 2 chrono clocks for me. On to the game. The whole point of playing Qa4 before the diagram instead of the stronger Qf3 is that I had found a way to counter Rxc3 completely missing Ivan's Qg3! If ..Rxc3 Rxc3,Rxb2 then Rc8+, Bf8 Rxf8, Kxf8, Qa3 winning. After Qg3! instead, he has all kinds of mating shots with not only Bh4 but also a possible Rook lift. When he played Qg3 instead, I panicked when he didn't fall for my trap, and dropped everything when I could've held on with Nd1 followed by Re2. I was completely lost after my Ne2. Since I knew a loss would win the team nothing, I had to try to swindle a draw out dragging the game on to move 60 when he finally simplified down giving up Rook for Knight when up 2 pawns. Congratulations again Ivan!

  5. I think they gave out Chronos only for the overall winners.

    After your Q f3 I didnt't realize till later that I can play R c1+ instead of R c8, after Kh2 I can play g5.

    I was sure we had played before but when I looked at my history I could not find the games.

    Have you seen this tool: