Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Japanese Championships 2013 Round 8: Black to play and win

"Would you like some water?" I asked, to which he gave a four-millimetre nod.
From the novel Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami

by Junta

In Round 8 I was up against Naohiro Nakamura, who has been improving steadily over the last few years. He finished the tournament in 3rd place with 7.5/11, only losing to the 1st and 2nd place-getters.


As Black, I've built up a solid advantage - the game continued 21...dxe4 22.Bxf6 Bxf6

23.Rad1 (23.Nd6 Qd7 23.Rad1 Nd3, for example 24.Nb5 Qc6 25.Rf1 Qc5 26.Qxc5 Nxc5 27.Nd6 Rcb8 28.Nxe4 Nxb3)


Here it took me 20 minutes to find the best continuation for Black - what was it?
(Game continuation below in white)

23…Be7 Switchbacks are often difficult to spot. 24.fxe4 Nxa4 Now Black is a healthy pawn up. 25. Nd6 (25.bxa4 Bc5 26.Nd4 [26.Rd8+ Kh7 27.Rd4 e5 28.Nd6 Qd7] e5) Bxd6 26.Rxd6 Rc3 27.Rd3 Rxd3 28.Qxd3 Nc3 29.Nf2 Qb6 30.Rc1 Rd8 31.Qf3 Qa6 32.Kg2 Qa3 33.Rxc3 bxc3 34.Qxc3 Rb8 35.Qc4 Qxb3 36.Qc5 Qb5 37.Qd4 Qe2 38.Qc3 Rb1 39.Qd3 Qxd3 0–1

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