Tuesday, September 18, 2007

IM Ippolito annotates his win versus Baltimore

(Editor's note: Dean Ippolito has generously agreed to annotate his win from the match against Baltimore. You can replay an unannotated version here. IM Ippolito is the New Jersey State Chess Federation's Teacher of the Year, and so you can learn a great deal from his insightful annotations. Thank you Dean!)

IM Ippolito - FM Enkhbat [D15]
USCL, Baltimore vs. New Jersey, 12SEP2007

1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.e3

4.Nf3 a6 5.c5 I recently played this against Kritz at the NE Masters and got a winning position. I thought he might have prepared something so I went back to a line that I had only played once before.

4...a6 5.Nf3 b5 6.b3 Bg4 7.Be2 e6 8.0-0

8.h3 Bf5

8...Nbd7 9.h3 Bf5

9...Bh5 is the main move and goes into my Itkis game from the 2006 US Championships.


10.Nh4 Ne4;
Better is 10.Bd3!+= which is known to be best for white. I tried getting a little creative here.

10...Nxe5 11.dxe5 Nd7

11...Ne4 12.Nxe4 Bxe4 13.f3 Bg6 is also fine for black.

12.cxd5 cxd5 13.Bb2 Bc5

13...Nxe5? 14.Nxb5

14.Bg4 (diagram 1)


14...Qg5! was the move I missed when playing 10.Ne5. This gives black no problems and only black can be better. When playing 14.Bg4, I had a decent response lined up against 14...Qg5!, though I was still concerned about it. 15.Bxf5 Qxf5 16.Qe2! was my idea when 16...Nxe5 ( 16...Qxe5 17.Nxb5; Better would be 16...0-0 17.e4 Qxe5 18.Nxd5 Qg5=) 17.e4 with initiative;
14...Bg6 15.Nxd5 was another idea though he can play (even stronger is 15.Ne2 and white is a little better) 15...h5! ( 15...exd5! 16.Qxd5 Rc8 17.Rfd1 Rc7 18.Rac1) 16.Nf4 hxg4 17.Nxg6 fxg6 18.Qxg4 Qe7 19.Qxg6+ Qf7 and black covers up.

15.Qxg4 0-0 16.Ne2

16.Qg3 f6

16...Qe7 17.Nf4 Rfc8 18.Rfc1


18...Bb6 19.a4?!

Better was 19.Nh5 g6 20.Nf6+ Nxf6 21.exf6 and black has to worry about g7 for a long time to come. I wanted to try for more, and as in most cases of asking too much from a position, got much less.

19...Qb4! 20.axb5 Rxc1+ 21.Rxc1 axb5 22.Bd4 Qd2!

22...Bxd4 23.Nxe6! fxe6 24.Qxe6+ Kf8 25.exd4 Qd2 26.Rf1 and black is in danger. I saw this position after 20.ab but missed his 22nd move which is very strong.

23.Rd1 Qc2 24.Re1?

This is inconsistent with my previous play of going for an attack. Here, time was getting low and I played a passive move. 24.Nxe6! fxe6 25.Qxe6+ Kh8 26.Rf1 and while the position is unbalanced, white is at least no worse.

24...Bxd4 25.exd4 Qc3 26.Qd1

Better is 26.Rd1

26...Ra3 27.Re3

Better is 27.Kh2

27...Ra1 28.Rxc3 Rxd1+ 29.Kh2 Rxd4

Now black is much better.

30.Rc8+ Nf8 31.g3 g6


32.Kg2 Rb4

32...Kg7 33.Ne2 Re4

33.Rc3 Re4 34.Nd3 Kg7 35.Rc7 g5 36.Rb7 Ng6 37.b4 h5

37...Nxe5!? is safer though it's still difficult to demonstrate a win 38.Nc5 Rxb4 39.Nxe6+ Kg6 40.Nxg5 ( 40.Nf8+) 40...Kxg5 41.f4+ Kf5 42.fxe5

38.Nc5 Rxe5 39.Rxb5

Black's advantage is now in doubt due to white's passed b-pawn.

39...Re1 40.Rb7 g4?

Better was 40...Kf6

41.hxg4 hxg4 42.b5

White is now very active and black needs to be careful.

42...Kf6 43.Nd7+ Kg7?

Better was 43...Kf5


Black is the one who needs to be careful now. I had seen the coming tactical idea for the previous couple of moves.

44...Ne5?? (diagram 2)


45.Nxe5 Rxe5 46.Rxf7+!

Now white will queen.

46...Kxf7 47.b7 Re4 48.b8Q Rc4 49.Qe5 Re4 50.Qg5 Rc4 51.Qh6 Ra4 52.Qh7+ Kf6 53.Qh8+ Kf7 54.Qe5 Rc4 55.f4

The easiest way to win is to create a passed pawn.

55...gxf3+ 56.Kxf3 Re4 57.Qh5+

Now the g-pawn will advance and white will win easily. A very lucky win!


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