2013 Texas Collegiate Championships

(1) Zherebukh,Yaroslav (2611) - Chirila,Ioan Cristian (2517) [D03]
Texas Collegiate (4), 10.11.2013
[Chirila, Ioan Cristian]

In the penultimate round I got paired against one of the top seeds of the tournament. I knew he is a very strong opponent but my recent results gave me enough confidence to go into the game with a positive attitude. 1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5 The Trompovsky! I have to admit that I never prepared seriously against this opening. The night before the game I had a feeling that he will try to surprise me so I decided to prepare a bit against it. 2...d5 3.Nd2 [3.Bxf6 This is is currently considered to be the main line 3...gxf6 (3...exf6!? ) 4.e3 c5 5.dxc5 e6 6.c4 (6.Nf3 Nd7 7.c4 dxc4 8.c6 Nb6 9.Nbd2 c3 10.bxc3 bxc6~~ Carlsen- Kramnik, 2013 1-0 Black finally lost this game but I don't think he should be worse in this position. The bishop pair should compensate the worse structure.) ] 3...Nbd7 4.Ngf3 c5 5.e3 e6 6.c3 Be7 7.Bd3 b6 [7...0-0 8.0-0 b6 9.Ne5 Nxe5 10.dxe5 Nd7 11.Bxe7 Qxe7 12.f4 f6~~ ] 8.0-0 Bb7 9.Qb1! [9.dxc5 bxc5 10.Qc2 0-0 11.Bxf6 Nxf6 12.c4 h6= ] 9...h6 10.Bh4 [10.Bxf6 Bxf6 11.b4 Qc7 12.a4 0-0 13.a5 Rab8 (13...Rac8?! 14.axb6 axb6 15.bxc5 bxc5 16.Ra7 Rb8 17.Ba6+/= White retains some pressure) 14.h3 e5~~ ] 10...0-0 11.b4 Black's position look quite solid but this clever pawn expansion is not easy to refute, and if black doesn't do something about it his position could easily become very unpleasant. 11...cxb4 [11...c4!? 12.Bc2 a5 13.a3 (13.bxa5?! Rxa5=/+ ) 13...b5 14.Qb2 Qc7 15.Bg3 Bd6 Black has a pleasant position and he solved all his opening problems] 12.cxb4 Ne4? A big blunder, white could have seized the initiative and obtain a big advantage with a fairly simple sequence of moves. I am sure my opponent saw the refutation but probably considered the game continuation to be more effective 13.Bxe7? Returning the favor, much better was [13.Nxe4 Bxh4 (13...dxe4 14.Bxe4 Bxe4 15.Qxe4 Bxh4 16.Nxh4 Nf6 17.Qb1 Nd5 18.Nf3+/- ) 14.Nd6 Rb8 15.Nxh4 Qxh4 16.Qc2 Qd8 17.Rfc1 and after Qc7, blacks position is close to lost.] 13...Qxe7 14.Nxe4 dxe4 15.Bxe4 Bxe4 16.Qxe4 Qxb4 17.Qb7 Qa4 [17...Qd6?! 18.Rfc1 Rfb8 19.Qc7 Qd5 20.Rc6+/= White keeps a very unpleasant pressure along the 7th rank and the c-file] 18.Rfc1 Rab8 [18...Rfd8! this was a bit more precised, the point being that if white plays 19.Qc7 (19.Rc6?? Nc5! 20.Qc7 Rd7-+ ) 19...Qa6= And I win an important tempo compared to the game] 19.Qc7 Rfd8 20.Rc6 Qa6 21.Rac1 Qxa2 22.h3 [22.Rd6!? Rdc8! (22...Qa6? 23.Rxd7 Rdc8 24.h3! Winning the queen is not enough 24...Rxc7 25.Rcxc7 Rf8 26.Ne5 Qa2 27.Rxa7 Qb2 28.Nxf7+/- ) 23.Qxc8+ Rxc8 24.Rxc8+ Kh7 25.h3 Nf6 26.Ne5 Ne4 27.Rdd8 Qxf2+ 28.Kh2 Qg3+ 29.Kh1 Qe1+= ] 22...Qa6 23.d5! My opponent demonstrates a great understanding of the concept of initiative, he is sacrificing the second pawn in order to create a powerful central square for his knight, as well as eliberating the 6th rank for his rook to join the attack against my king [23.Rd6 Qb7=/+ ] 23...exd5 [23...Qb7 24.dxe6 fxe6 25.Rd1 Qxc7 26.Rxc7 Nc5 27.Rxd8+ Rxd8 28.Rxa7= I saw this line but I already considered my position promising, especially given the fact that I had a good amount of extra time on my clock, therefore complications would be beneficial for me] 24.Nd4 Rbc8 25.Qxc8 Rxc8 26.Rxc8+ Kh7 27.R1c7 Ne5 28.Ra8? [28.Re8 Nc4 29.Kh2! The only move that gives white the advantage, in my opinion this move is very hard to spot (29.Ree7 Nd2 30.Kh2 Nf1+ 31.Kg1 Qa1= ) 29...Nd2 30.h4!+- And white's king escapes the perpetual, now black will have a hard time dealing with the rook battery along the 7th rank] 28...Qa1+ 29.Kh2 Qf1 30.Rc2 My opponent had only a few seconds left on his clock at this point, the position is very hard to defend even without being in time trouble [30.Re8 Nd3 31.Nf3 (31.Rxf7 Ne1+- ) 31...Nxf2 32.Kg3 Ne4+ 33.Kh2 Qf2-/+ ] 30...a5 31.Ra7 Nc4 32.Re2 Kg6?! [32...b5 much more precise 33.Rxf7 a4 34.Rb7 a3 35.Rxb5 Qxe2 36.Nxe2 a2-+ ] 33.Rd7 a4 34.Rxd5 a3 35.Rb5? [35.Rc2! The last chance to survive, now the win is not that close anymore 35...Qd1 36.Rxc4 a2 37.Nf5! Qxd5 38.Ne7+ Kh7 39.Nxd5 a1Q 40.Rd4 (40.Nxb6!? Qe5+ 41.Kg1 Qb5 42.Rc7 Qxb6 43.Rxf7 Qb1+-/+ ) 40...b5 41.Nb4 White can hope to obtain a blockade even though I would have played another hundred moves to try and win] 35...Qxe2 36.Nxe2 a2 Not a perfect game at all but a very complex battle, in the end it was white who made the last mistake, which proved decisive. 0-1

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