1/7 Chess 1/3

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Game One

https://www.chess.com/analysis/game/live/6170692321

I equalized nicely out of the opening, reaching a nice position on move 11:

I wasn’t able to come up with any good ideas — upon review, I should have either gone O-O-O or played Bc5 and baited him into d4 before O-O.

By four moves later I had already let him build up some nice tactical threats and a better position:

I could have held a reasonable position with Nf6 or Bf6, but I didn’t see the threat on g7 and got killed quickly after Qd8 Nxc6.

Happy with my opening, bad middlegame idea generation.

Game Two

We’ve got the white side of a sicilian, which is a particular weakness of mine right now:

https://www.chess.com/analysis/game/live/6170884775

Luckily we played a variation that I remember pretty well:

Nf6 is not one of the main moves for black, here are Master games:

Though apparently very common at my level:

The main idea here is in most variations is to reroute the a3 knight to c4 then to e3, which I remembered.

It looks like that still works, though Bg5 is popular:

From all games:

Bg5 has good results and is by far more common, so I was thinking maybe I should remember that.

But then I checked out the master games:

Nc4 still not played, but notably has never lost in 20 games!!

I looked down and saw Anand! Ok, let’s see what he plays. Turns out both of those games are Nc4. We’ll stick with Nc4.

https://lichess.org/ihYaQV0T

https://lichess.org/UNUziy52

Back to our game. If I knew the Vishy plan, I would have tried g3 Bg2, but instead did something else and wound up winning a clean pawn:

However, my victory was short-lived, white to move, only one move keeps the advantage:

Should have been Qd3, where after taking on c3, the knight is always trapped. Whoops. Equal game.

I got one more chance to win the game with an only-move, but missed it again!

Re3!! I guess it should have been obvious the knight was trapped, but I just didn’t see it.

Then we traded down into a totally equal K+2R v K+2R end game, and I made a mistake I’ve made many times, pushing a passed pawn too far.

I shouldn’t have pushed the pawn so far, but once I did, I should have locked up the position like this:

I ended up losing the pawn and was unable to hold the end game with less time on the clock.

0-2 for the day!

Game Three

White pieces, another sicilian, and luckily another one I remembered pretty well.

https://www.chess.com/analysis/game/live/6171029858

Quickly reaching this position:

Unfortunately, I did not remember that if he plays Be7, then I can play g4. I always think of this line, but I usually get it wrong.

I’m going to check out this game for an idea: https://lichess.org/GpYLkYVb

But my studies have been paying off! Only-move for white:

That’s right, Bxe6!!

Here I actually messed up the attack. I played Bh6, which is bad, I should have played Nf5.

After both fumbling around with the kingside attack, I finally untangled with the advantage:

He then played a few pretty bad moves and resigned after I began my mating attack:

Got a win!

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