Friday, May 8, 2015

Zilbermints Philidor Counter Gambit

Zilbermints wrote to me: "I crushed Tatai with the PCG on ICC". Here is his game vs IM Stefano Tatai. Clearly, this gambit places a lot of pressure to play very accurately. White has good moves, but in an unbalanced tactical position White needs to play many good moves in a row to gain the advantage. Lev shows that in a three-minute blitz game, a prepared attacker has great practical chances against a human opponent.

The Philidor Defence can be played in many ways, either solid or aggressive. As I see it, Black has three key choices:
1. Play ...Nbd7 with ...c6, or play ...Nc6.
2. Play ...exd4, or protect and hold e5.
3. Play an early ...Nf6 or play first ...f5.

This last approach is the Philidor Counter Gambit. After 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 White can play 3.Nxe5 against openings such as 2...Nf6, 2...d5, or 2...f5. However 2...d6 protects e5, therefore Black forces White to enter the fray in a manner that can threaten the Nf3. Lev Zilbermints ends up on top in this short tactical clash.

Ornitologo (1885) - Zilbermints (2055), ICC 5 0 Internet Chess Club, 26.04.2015 begins 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 f5 4.dxe5 [Common alternatives are 4.Nc3+/= and 4.exf5+/-] 4...fxe4 5.Ng5 d5 6.Nc3 [Komodo and Houdini prefer 6.e6+/- while Fritz prefers 6.c4+/=] 6...Bb4 7.e6 [Or 7.Be2 Nc6 8.0-0+/= Stockfish] 7...Nh6 [7...Qf6! 8.Nf7 Bxe6 9.Nxh8 Nc6 gives Black compensation for the pawn.] 8.Qh5+ Kf8 9.Nf7 [9.Bd2; 9.Be3; or 9.f3] 9...Qe8 10.Bxh6 [10.Qxd5! Nxf7 11.exf7 Qxf7 12.Qd8+ Qe8 13.Qxc7+- and White is up a pawn with a solid position.] 10...Bxe6 11.Qe5? [11.Qg5! gxh6 12.Qf6 Qxf7 13.Qxh8+ Qg8 14.Qf6+ Qf7 15.Qxh6+ Qg7 16.Qxg7+ Kxg7 17.0-0-0+/-] 11...Qxf7 12.Bxg7+? Qxg7 13.Qxe6 Bxc3+ 14.Ke2 Nc6 [14...Bxb2-+] 15.bxc3 Qxc3 16.Rd1 A knight fork is coming, so White resigns 0-1

London 2.Bf4 Playbook: How to begin. London 2.Bf4 Tactics: How to win quickly.
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