Sunday, March 18, 2012

London System Stops the Benoni

Once again I play a London vs Fuerte2004 on the Internet Chess Club. At 2091, he was the highest rated human player found on the search list at the moment I wanted to play. All three times Fuerte2004 has chosen something different to play as Black:
First: 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 c5; Second: 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6; and Third: 1.d4 c5.

This last choice is today's game below. Black is hoping for a Benoni Defence with 2.d5. Indeed I have played d5 many times followed by either c4 or Nc3 without c4. However, my SuperSolid repertoire is to play 2.c3, intending an initial Nf3/Bf4/e3 set-up.

An early ...c5 vs the London also has the issue of an early ...Qb6. The move 2.c3 allows White to choose Qb3, Qc2 or Qc1 as a response, depending on the exact move order. Finally, it is quite possible to transpose after 1.d4 c5 2.c3 into a Slav Defence Exchange Variation with 2...cxd4 3.cxd4 d5. This is one many openings that I play from both sides.

In the end, Fuerte2004 started like he was going in a London Queens Indian with 3...b6, but without ...e6 he later transposed into a London System with ...g6. Winning this game raised my ICC blitz rating up to 2237.

Sawyer-Fuerte2004, ICC 3 0 Internet Chess Club, 16.03.2012 begins 1.d4 c5 2.c3 Nf6 3.Nf3 b6 4.Bf4 Bb7 5.e3 g6 6.Nbd2 Bg7 7.h3 0-0 8.Be2 Generally after ...g6 this bishop goes to e2 for both offence and defence. It avoids a potential pawn fork tactic after e7-e5-e4, and it hits h5 in case of a later ...Nh5. 8...d5 9.0-0 Nc6 10.Ne5 Nh5? [Black drops a pawn to our Be2 tactic. Normal looks like 10...Nxe5 11.Bxe5 Ne8 12.Bxg7= White has exchanged his bad bishop for Black good bishop. The middlegame is approaching equality, but an ending might someday favor White.] 11.Nxc6 Bxc6 12.Bxh5 gxh5 13.Qxh5 cxd4 14.exd4 f5 Leaves holes on g5/e5. 15.Nf3 Be8 16.Qh4 Bg6 17.Rfe1 Bf6 18.Bg5 Qd6 19.Bxf6 [I considered 19.Ne5 but Black can move to bishops of opposite color with 19...Bxe5 20.Rxe5 when White winning, but I did not want to go there in a 3 0 blitz game.] 19...exf6 20.Qg3 f4 21.Qg4 Rae8 22.Rxe8 Rxe8 23.Re1 Rxe1+ 24.Nxe1 Qe7 (Clocks: 2:01-1:05) 25.Kf1!? [Obviously a queenless endgame greatly favors White with the extra pawn. I decided to head there. Objectively stronger is 25.Nd3! Kg7 26.Nxf4 Qe1+ 27.Kh2 Qxf2 28.Nxd5+-] 25...Qe4 26.Qe2 f5 [26...Qb1! makes White work more.] 27.Qxe4 [Again 27.Nd3+- ] 27...fxe4 28.g3 fxg3 29.fxg3 Be8 30.Nc2 Bb5+ 31.Kf2 Bd3?! [Better is 31...Kf7 32.Ne3+/-] 32.Nb4 Bc4 33.b3 a5 34.bxc4 axb4 35.cxb4 dxc4 36.Ke3 [36.a4!+-] 36...c3 37.a4 Kf7 38.a5 bxa5 39.bxa5 Ke6 40.a6 Kd5 41.a7 Kc4 42.a8Q Kb3 43.Qb7+ Kc2 44.Qxe4+ 1-0 Black resigns. Clocks: 0:52-0:09. 1-0

You may also like: King Pawn (1.e4 e5) and Sicilian (1.e4 c5)
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