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Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Minnesota Open

I didn’t do so well at the state chess tournament this year. In 2002, I won 4 out of 6 games, but this year all I got was a draw. I play the Grob, an opening which is unorthodox and underdog, similar to my politics. When I do win, it’s sweet. Below is my draw. The computer analysis says I was winning, but I was running out of time, drained, faltering, and anxious to avoid a shutout. My opponent had a long drive home, offered the draw, and I took it:

Cleland,T - Konczak,J [A00]
MN Open (6), 19.02.2006
[Fritz 6 (30s)]
1.g4 A00: Irregular Openings 1...c5 2.Bg2 e6 Secures d5 3.c4 Nc6 4.a3 Consolidates b4 4...a6 5.h3 Qc7 6.Nf3 h6 Covers g5 7.d3 Nge7 8.Nbd2 Ng6 9.Ne4 Be7 10.Bd2 Nh4 [¹10...d5!? and Black can hope to survive 11.cxd5 exd5³] 11.Nxh4± Bxh4 12.Nxc5 Qb6 13.Be3?? a transit from better to worse [¹13.Ne4!? Be7 14.Bc3±] 13...Qxb2 [¹13...d6 14.b4 dxc5 15.Bxc5 Qc7µ] 14.Na4 Qf6 15.Nb6 Rb8 16.Rb1 0–0 17.Qd2 Ne5 [17...d6 18.Be4²] 18.Nxc8 [18.0–0!? d5 19.Bf4 dxc4 20.d4+- (20.Nxc4?! Nxc4 21.dxc4 e5=) ] 18...Rfxc8² 19.0–0 [19.Bxb7? is no good because of 19...Rc7–+; 19.Rxb7? is a blank shot 19...Rxb7 20.Bxb7 Rb8–+] 19...Nc6 20.Rb6 Nd4 [20...Qd8 21.Rfb1=] 21.Qb2 Nc6 22.Qxf6 Bxf6 [22...gxf6? 23.Rfb1+-] 23.Rfb1 Rc7 24.Bc5 Be7 25.Bxe7 Nxe7 26.Rxb7 Rcxb7 27.Rxb7 [Instead of 27.Bxb7 Nc6 28.d4 Nxd4³] 27...Rxb7 28.Bxb7 a5 29.Kg2 f5 30.gxf5 Nxf5 31.Bc8 Nd4 32.Bxd7 Nxe2 33.Bxe6+ Kf8 34.Bd5 Nd4 [34...Nf4+ 35.Kf3 Nxd3 36.Ke3+-] 35.Be4 Ne6 36.Kf3 Ke7 37.Kg4 Kf6 38.h4 Ke5 39.Bd5 Nf4?? an oversight. But Black was lost anyway. [¹39...Nc5 40.f4+ Kf6+-] 40.Be4 [¹40.d4+ and the rest is a matter of technique 40...Kxd4 41.Kxf4+-] 40...Ne6 41.Kf3 Nd4+ 42.Kg2 Ne6 [42...Nc2 43.a4 Kd4 44.Kf3±] 43.Kf1 Kd4 44.a4 [¹44.Ke2+- and the scales tip in favour of White] 44...Nc5 45.Bc6 Nxd3 46.Bb5 Kc5 ½–½


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