Monday, 14 September 2009

First place!

I don't know how I managed it but I won both games on Sunday, making me outright winner with five wins out of five and £150. First time I've ever won anything! Both were tough long games with the last one lasting 3hrs 55mins. Was exhausted at the end.

One thing I've learnt from the experience is that I'm suited to open unbalanced tactical positions, I felt I was able to calculate more deeply, and when I realised a threat wasn't really a threat I could concentrate on launching better attacks. Also a fair amount of luck went my way.


First game was against Keith Hodgson from Bramhall. He played the Petroff defence which I've had very little experience playing against. Thankfully I remembered the moves I wanted to play, in the past I've really blocked myself in.

However he was better out of the opening with a strong knight. But this simplified down and on move 32 I offered a draw, as it was a very even endgame and I thought if anyone was going to win it was him. Luckily for me he turned it down!

So it worked out to be 7 pawns against 7 pawns. 43...d4 is where he made the mistake and over-committed a pawn allowing my king to get in between them. This meant I was a pawn up.

In the position above I played Kb5 but a much easier win would have been Kd6, where he wouldn't be able to stop my e pawn. I initially miscalculated and thought the a pawn had less moves to make to promote by pushing the g pawn as well, but realised he could promote his e pawn at the same time. But luckily my king had the much better position to block his pawn where as mine was unhindered. So he soon resigned.


Final round was against Richard Cantliff from Fenton. I was hoping an easy short game as was already quite tired. I knew that a draw would make me outright winner, with a loss still giving me a share of 1st prize.

For the third time I faced 1.d4, this time he played what he told me afterwards was the four pawns attack, something I'd never encountered before. But he told me the crucial thing he forgot was Kh1 as f4 exposes the castled king.

A big miscalculation by me was 21...Nxb4 and I thought it had cost me the game. I overlooked that Nb2 would protect both minor pieces from my queen. But he made a bigger mistake and put his rook there instead, allowing Qc5 checking his exposed king and winning a knight and pawns.

In the position below I was sure there was a mate somewhere but couldn't figure it out.

There was actually a mate in 5: 34... Rh1+ 35. Kg3 Nh5+ 36. Kh4 Bf6+ 37. Qg5 hxg5+ 38. Kg4 Qf4#.

I lost the momentum and it simplified down but I still had the advantage. He was by now very short of time, I just played what I thought were sensible moves until his clock ran out. I might have struggled to convert the win otherwise!

A very pleasing overall result, beyond anything I'd imagined.


Glenn Wilson said...

Congratulations, that is a fantastic result!

Farbror the Guru said...

Excellent! Well Done!

Dean said...

Thanks both!

BishBash said...

Well done Dean your enthusiasm is reaping reward.

Dean said...

Thanks BishBash