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Sunday, January 27, 2013

Philidor Defense (11), tactical slips

Today’s game is a USCF rated game at the club played at G75 with a 30 second increment. My opponent is an unrated player who shows tactical awareness. I am defending 1.e4 with my favorite Philidor Defense.

My opponent tried an early attack against the f7-Pawn, which was easily deflected, as I gain two pieces for a Rook and Pawn.

A trade of pieces with 14.Nxd6+ cxd6 results in a majority of central pawns, but d6 is now backwards and I have 3 pawn islands against White’s two.

I missed 26...Rxd2 and 27...Rd4, both potentially winning tactical attacks. My tactical vision definitely needs improvement.

Later in the game, I made a couple of draw offers when I saw no advantages for either side, although there was enough time on the clock. The problem is that I get discouraged with drawn positions late in the game and lose enthusiasm for playing. Shortly thereafter I carelessly subjected both my pieces to pins and my opponent emerged victorious.

The variations and move evaluations are Houdini’s (1.5 32-bit), diagnosed with ‘Scid vs PC’ at 15 seconds per ply and a 0.6 error threshold. The verbal comments are my thoughts during the game and my interpretations of the analysis provided by Houdini. The score chart is at the bottom of this entry.

My chess studies have been haphazard and intermittent for the last 3 months. This showed up in this game. I am renewing my chess study log and making tactical and endgame problems prominent.

Today’s endgame study: taken from Chernev’s Practical Chess Endgames is fun and challenging. I missed the win a couple of times before successful completion. Later, I found another winning method. Hope y’all try it and enjoy.

Take the endgame FEN and paste it into your favorite engine and try to repeat the win. My opponent was Houdini set at full strength.

FEN "8/1pk5/8/1K6/1PP5/8/8/8 w - - 0 1

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