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Here is my second round game from the 2008 South Carolina Open fully annotated:
This was actually my highest rated win ever in tournament play over a 2105 USCF so this victory made me especially happy!
Any thoughts or feedback would be greatly appreciated as I am always looking to find where I could have improved throughout the course of the game and I am trying to understand what I can learn from the game for the future.
I thought you made some really sound moves under extreme time pressure, playing with some inaccuracies, but no blunders. For this I offer sincere congratulations, as time pressure is rather something that makes me fall apart. It looks like a much higher ranked player folded more easily under the same pressure, and this must make it even more gratifying for you.
I thought you played really very well, so congratulations.
Yes, I had considered 22. d4 but after 22...Nxg4 23. Qxg4 cxd4 24. cxd4 Qxb2 I think I am in some trouble.
I don't like black's 31...f4+ at all.
I think you were in danger of zugzwang if black played moves like 31...b5 and maybe later g4 - it looks difficult to play for white : you may run out of moves and fall for some simplifying tactic (such as c4 after b5 has been played) at some stage.
Maybe 22.d4 is worth a look as an active drawing attempt, one idea being 22...Nd3 23.Qh4!? - but it requires some calculation.
Another strong Knight on e5 :-)
Yes thanks, especially since my opponent outranked me by about 300 rating points I decided to enter clearer and simpler lines which would make for an easy position to play and then hope to outplay my opponent in a quiet position rather than entering complications and tactics where my opponent may outplay me.
What I like about this game, which your annotations make clear, is that you often choose a simple move to improve your position rather than reaching for something that isn't there. This is a lesson I am still trying to learn
I watched Chris Ward play 6...e5 at British Championship two years ago, so playable if GM plays it, but looks anti-positional to put another pawn same square as bishop. Otherwise yes I think white aims for Maroczy structure.
(I looked at your first game too but couldn't see anything you hadn't already thought of).
Congratulations on your victory! And, as always, great notations.
Right, thanks for the instructive feedback TwoMove. I was actually considering 6. c4, this would transpose the game into a Maroczy Bind like structure? Although after 6. c4 maybe 6...e5?! preventing white from playing d2-d4.
I once lost badly in the gambit line 6.c3 Nf6 7.d4 Nxe4 8.d5 Ne5. There is also the positonal 6c4 putting pawns on white squares, after exchanging this bishop. Both of these lines are more dangerous for black than 6Nc3, which to be honest is rather tame, especially when followed up with 7.d3.
After 9Qd2 black can disrupt white's plan with 9...Ng4 i.e if 10.Bf4 e5 followed by f5 with advantage to black, or if 10Bg5 h6. So probably white should play 9h3, black is completely fine after 9...Nd4.
This is an Awesome Game!!!
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