domenica 12 agosto 2018

One Sunday

谭中怡 (Tán Zhōngyí) – Nana Dzagnidze
4th “心桥杯” (“Xīnqiáo Cup”); match game 2; 温州 (Wēnzhōu), August 12, 2018
Sicilian Defence B49

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nc6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Be2 Qc7 7. 0-0 Nf6 8. Be3 b5? Grandmaster Vladimir Pavlovich Simagin gave this “unprudent” move a question mark, recommending instead 8. ... Bb4(!). Since he also was a remarkable theoretician, his advice could well be sound. 9. Nxc6 dxc6 (9. ... Qxc6? 10. e5+−) 10. f4 b4 11. Na4 c5. Of course, after 11. ... Nxe4 12. Bb6 Qd7 13. Bf3 Black stands very badly – Simagin’s vintage analysis. 12. c3! Rb8 13. cxb4. Simagin got his luck with 13. Bf3 e5? (but 13. ... bxc3 seems much better) 14. fxe5 Qxe5 15. g3 g5 16. cxb4 Rxb4 17. Rc1+− Simagin – Kan, 22nd USSR Chess Championship, Moscow 1955. 13. ... Rxb4 14. Rc1! “White seizes the initiative”, Grandmaster Mark Evgenievich Taimanov laconically concluded in his book “Winning with the Sicilian”, New York, Collier Books, 1991, p. 68. 14. ... Nxe4? The critical line is 14. ... Rxe4(!) 15. Nxc5! Rxe3 16. Nxa6 Qd8 17. Bb5+ Bd7 18. Nc7+ Ke7 19. Qa4 Bxb5 20. Nxb5 (Krogius – Taimanov, 30th USSR Chess Campionship, Yerevan 1962) and now 20. ... Qb6(!) could well make things really unclear. 15. a3 Rb8 16. Bf3 Bb7 17. Bxe4. Here 17. b4 could also be considered. 17. ... Bxe4 18. Bxc5 Rxb2!? Dzagnidze doesn’t resist the temptation to sacrifice the Exchange for a Pawn and a very impressive Bishop pair. Unfortunately for her, the powerful couple will soon have to part. 19. Nxb2 Bxc5+ 20. Kh1 Qb7. That’s it — Black cannot play 20. ... Qc6 as after 21. Rf2! White just defends and wins. 21. Qg4? It happened to 谭中怡 (Tán Zhōngyí) today just like it happened to Nana Dzagnidze yesterday. Here White apparently misses the quite simple 21. Rxc5 Bxg2+ 22. Kg1 Bxf1 23. Qxf1 0-0 24. Qc1 which leaves her with material superiority, a Knight against two Pawns. 21. ... Qxb2 22. Rxc5 0-0. Now it is all unclear. 23. Qg3 Rd8 24. Rfc1? A slip that could have ended in disaster. White ought to have played first 24. Re1 f5 and then 25. Rec1 Bb7∞ with something similar to what occurs in the game.


24. ... Bb7? Thousands light years far away from thinking that luck had knocked on her door, Dzagnidze misses 24. ... h6!! (with the terrific threat of ... Rd8-d2) 25. Rc8 Kh7!!−+ which results in too many deadly threats for Black. 25. h3 h6 26. R5c2 Qb5 27. Kh2 Rd3 28. Qf2 Rxa3 29. Rb2 Rb3 30. Rcb1 Rxb2 31. Qxb2 Qxb2 32. Rxb2 Bd5. After the storm calmed, a dynamically balanced ending is now on the board, and a pretty scholastic draw will be soon agreed. 33. Rb6 Bc4 34. Kg3 Kh7 35. Rb7 Kg6 36. Rc7 Bb5 37. Kf3 Kf6 38. g4 g5 39. Kg3 Bd3 40. h4 gxh4+ 41. Kxh4 Be2 42. Rc8 Bf3 43. Kg3 Bd5 44. Kf2 a5 45. Rc5 a4 46. Ra5 Bb3 47. Ke3 Bd1 48. g5+ hxg5 49. Rxg5 Bb3 50. Ra5 ½ : ½.

谭中怡 (Tán Zhōngyí) (left) vs. Nana Dzagnidze (right). Photo: qipai.org.cn.

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