Monday, June 27, 2016

Semi-Slav Meran vs Feranandez

The popularity of the Semi-Slav Meran Variation goes back to the 1920s and 1930s. Rabinovich, Euwe, Pirc, Thomas, and Kashdan played it often as Black. I tried it against an APCT opponent whom I assume is the same Eduardo B. Fernandez. He is listed in USCF with a tournament rating of 2079 from Florida. Apparently Eduardo Fernandez has not been active for 30 years.

In 2004 Larry Kaufman promoted the Semi-Slav and the Meran in his book “The Chess Advantage in Black and White”. The line he recommended was 8…Bd6. Probably I chose 8…b4 based on a game I found in Chess Informant. I know Sveshnikov played it.

The Caro-Kann Defence was my favorite opening in the 1970s. Many times I played 1.d4 c6, but rarely did White take the bait and play 2.e4. If White wanted a Caro-Kann, he would play 1.e4. I am sure we both thought about castling early. But that just did not happen. This is the only time in my 50,000 games that both players castled on move 23.

White agreed to a draw when he had an extra pawn. But it would be difficult to win this rook and pawn ending. Since each players had to pay for each move they played, most of us tended not to drag out the game. By now we probably knew that we were out of the running for the APCT championship.

Fernandez (2016) - Sawyer (1900), corr APCT 77RF-6, 1978 begins 1.d4 c6 2.c4 d5 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.e3 e6 5.Nc3 Nbd7 6.Bd3 dxc4 7.Bxc4 b5 8.Bd3 b4!? [8...Bd6 9.0-0 0-0=] 9.Ne4 Nxe4 10.Bxe4 Bb7 11.Qa4!? [11.0-0 Bd6 12.a3 bxa3=] 11...Qb6 12.Nd2 Rc8 [12...a5 13.Nc4 Qc7 14.0-0 Be7=] 13.a3 bxa3 14.Nc4 Qa6 15.Qb3 Qb5 16.Qxb5 cxb5 17.Bxb7 Rxc4 18.bxa3 b4 [18...Ra4=] 19.axb4 Bxb4+ 20.Bd2 a5 21.Bxb4 Rxb4 22.Bf3 a4 23.0-0 0-0 24.Bc6 Nb6 25.Rfb1 Rb3 26.Rxb3 axb3 27.Rb1 Rc8 28.Bb5 g6 [28...Rc3 29.Kf1+/=] 29.Kf1 Nc4 30.Ke2 Na3 31.Rxb3 Nxb5 32.Rxb5 Rc2+ 33.Kf3 h5 34.h3 Rd2 35.g4 hxg4+ 36.hxg4 f6 37.Rb7 Kf8 38.g5 fxg5 39.Kg4 Rxf2 40.Kxg5 Rf5+ 41.Kxg6 Rf3 1/2-1/2

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