David Saqui v James Hooker
Emigrant Cup 2014, Rd.1
From a lost position black saves the position with a swindle, then keeps a cool head to secure the whole point.
Prevents the bishop from retreating to d2 to defend the knight and loses a pawn. 7.Qd3 is better.
Loses another pawn. White should play 18.Rad1-/+
This lets white back into the game. There is nothing wrong with 18...Bxd4
Too passive. 24...Rc3 wins. 25.Rxa7 Nc7 26.Kg2 Rg8 27.Rc5 bxc5 28.b6 (28.Rxc7 cxd4 29.Rb7 Rc4-+) 28...cxd4 29.bxc7 (29.Nxd4 Kd7 30.Nb5 Rxc2 31.bxc7 Rc8-+) 29...Kf7 (A. 29...Kd7?? 30.c8Q+ Kxc8 31.Ra8++- B. 29...Rxc2 30.Nxd4 Rc1 31.Ne6 Kd7 (31...Kf7 32.Nd8+ Ke8 (A. 32...Kg7?? 33.Ra8 Rxc7 34.Ne6++- B. 32...Kf8 33.Ne6+=) 33.Ne6=) 32.c8Q+ Kxc8 33.Ra8+ Kd7 34.Rxg8 Kxe6 35.Rg7=) 30.Nxd4 Rc8 31.Nb5 Rxc2-+
This move is a mistake, allowing the knight fork on c4. The correct line is 40...Ra7 41.c7+ (41.Rxa7 Nxa7=) 41...Kxc7 42.Rxe6 a3 43.Re7+ Kb6 44.Rxa7 Kxa7 (44...Nxa7?? 45.Nc4++-) 45.Nc6+ Kb6 46.Nb4= Of course black would then have lost half a point!
After having the advantage for some time white's sense of danger deserts him and he continues to play as though he had a winning advantage.. He needs to play 42.Nf7+ Rxf7 (A. 42...Kc7 43.Rxa7+ Nxa7 44.Kb3=) ; B. 42...Ke7 43.c7 Kd7 44.Rxa7 Nxa7 45.Kb3=) 43.Kxb5 Rxf2 44.Rxa3 Rb2+ 45.Kc4 Rc2+=
Very fine play by black. Having found a line to save the half-point from a bad position, the natural reaction would have been to snatch at 43...a2??. This is the move that everyone watching the conclusion of the game (myself included) expected white to play...but it only draws: 44.Kb7 a1Q 45.Nc4+ Ke7 46.Nb6 Qh1 47.d5! exd5 48.c7 d4+ 49.Ka7 Qa1+ 50.Kb7 (50.Kb8?? Qa6 51.c8Q Qxb6+ 52.Ka8 Qd8-+) 50...Qh1+. If he went into the line with intention of playing 43...a2, the flexibilty of thought implied by the game continuation makes his play even more impressive.
Notes by Ian George