Our new pedagogical series in which we look at a portion of a game I played the previous weekend in which some obvious tactic is overlooked. Readers are invited to practice their skill by seeing if they can spot what was missed.
Our game today is Horton-Gella Bitrian, Huesca 2007, which after White's fifteenth move (15.Nc3-d5) reached the following position:
Play then proceeded 15...Bxd5 16.cxd5 b5 17.Rad1 Nc4 18.Bc1 Nb6 19.Qf1 with a difficult midlegame ahead for White.
However, somewhere during this sequence one of the players missed a simple and winning tactic. Can you spot it? The game can be played through below if it helps. There were other serious mistakes as well...
(Again, answers in the comments box - so don't read it until you've had a go at solving it.)
Is it that you should have complained about black having three rooks?
At the end, isn't 43 Bb7 good?
After 43. Bb7 b4 44. Bc6 Nc8 does White have anything?
(Sorry, I know this isn't the answer to the question which was put.)
It's also a possible answer to a post later this week, so I'd save it until then.
Diagam now corrected. I blame the absence of proof-readers.
I like the look of 16... c4 with the idea of Nd3 and threats against e4 and b2. For example, 16... c4 17. Reb1 Nd3 18. Ne1 Nxe1 19 Rxe1 c3.
It's a good idea (one of many in the sequence) but it's not a clear-cut win.
how about Nxe4 instead of Nb6?
And if 19.Bxe4?
Assume it's Nxe4 and f5
Do you need me to tell you the reply to Bxe4? You are a much stronger player than I am and it is bleedin' obvious to me!
So: 18... Nxe4 19. Bxe4 (what if White doesn't take?) f5 20. f3 (assuming White doesn't want to lose material) ... fe 21. fe and now what? Well, material is equal but White looks to be somewhat down positionally with a backward e pawn and weakened pawns on g3 and h3... Oh, and b2 is hanging... Maybe White can improve on this sequence by playing 20. b3 (before f3) but 20... Nb2 looks possible: 20... Nb2 21. Rd2 Bc3 22. Bxb2 Bxb2 and Black threatens both Rxe4 and Bc3.
Yes Paul R but I'm setting the bleedin' question, aren't I? And you're supposed to be giving the whole bleedin' answer! And unless you actually give it all I don't know that you've seen it all!
Angus - he just takes on e4 with the rook....
This isn't answering the question, but in this sort of position (which I get occasionally, playing the English) I would tend to play 16. exd5 on the (possibly dubious?) grounds: (i) better Q side pawn structure for white and (ii) increases the scope of the g2B by one square.
OK, I can see that black has some potential threats against Ra1 and Qe2, but is cxd5 obviously the better choice?
With the queen where it is, I'm inclined to say yes: mind you, the queen should not be where it is.
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