Bankers’ Athletic League Chess 2013-03-14 Brizard vs. Alban

March 14, 2013  New York, NY

Mark Alban, playing as black, scores his third victory in four matches as Uncastled plays to a draw against Stuyvestant Town in Round 6 of Bankers’ Athletic League – Chess Division action Thursday night.  Facing higher-rated opponents on all four boards, Uncastled held off a tough Stuytown team, drawing the match 2-2.

Match results below are provided in the order in which the games finished.  My annotation of my game follows, and finally the moves list of my game concludes the blog.  The moves are in standard .pgn format, and can be copied/pasted into any .pgn or .txt formatted file.

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MATCH RESULTS (from Uncastled team captain Ajay Vachhani’s report):

Tom Amato, playing black on board 3, gave up a pawn against Tyrone Sylvester, leading to Amato’s eventual downfall. Uncastled 0, Stuytown 1.

Ajay Vachhani, playing white on board 4 against Leroy Gordon, moved too quickly trying to get his rook into action.  Instead of moving the rook where it could have been supported by a bishop, he moved it to an unprotected square. As a result, Vachhani lost a knight in order to save the rook, and then the rest of his position fell apart, leading to the dreaded queen/rook fork and a winning advantage for Gordon.  Uncastled 0, Stuytown 2

Mark Alban, playing black on board 1 against Peter Brizard, was battling out another wild, wide-open Sicilian position.  Alban gained an extra pawn on move 27, and another pawn a few moves later before finally sealing the victory with 2 minutes left.  Although Alban was down in time by more than 20 minutes, Brizard rushed his moves, trying to pressure Alban into a mistake.  But when his clock fell below 5 minutes, Alban took his game to the next level, capitalizing on a Brizard blunder, forking Brizard’s king and rook for the winning advantage. Despite time pressure, Mark won and had a “happy ending.”  Uncastled 1, Stuytown 2.

Finally, Carl Haynes, playing White against Mariano Perrero, managed to gain a pawn advantage as well as a time advantage.  Those small advantages proved significant in the end, allowing Haynes to clear all his opponent’s pieces off the board, forcing Perrero’s resignation and saving a match draw for Uncastled.  Final score: Uncastled 2, Stuytown 2.

Kudos to both teams for playing to a hard-fought draw.

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HERE’S MY ANNOTATION OF MY GAME (BRIZARD VS ALBAN):

I lost my score sheet from 2 weeks ago, but I’ll provide that whenever I can find it. Below is my game from 3/14/13.  On move 5, I figured my opponent must be preparing to castle Queenside.  He already fianchettoed his kingside bishop, and when he pushed his f-pawn on move 5, I thought his king would be too exposed if he castled kingside.  So I began preparing my troops to storm the queenside.  Also, at that point, I figured I needed a tempo, so I had to develop, and I’d wait as long as possible before castling…as it turned out I really did wait as long as possible:  I never castled at all!!!!  I thought 6. d3 was a mistake.  It allowed me to harass his knight, and keep the game closed (allowing me, as black, to gain back the tempo by not castling, developing my attack instead while Brizard castled).  8. h3 may have been unnecessary. It only prevented me from moving Ng4, but it gave me an opportunity to sac my knight in order to open up a line to his king if I chose to do so.  I felt that my 8…Qb6 was critical in order to keep his Bishop passive for the time being.  13. Nf5 was a great way to force my hand. 17. Nf4 also gave him a strongly placed knight, one which had some sacrificing possibilities.  But he never took advantage of those possibilities.  23. Qe5 was also a mistake.  I was able to chase the queen away with my pawn play, so it was a wasted move for him.  He should have just moved 23. Qe4 to begin with, because that’s the exact square he moved his queen to 2 moves later.  I thought 27. c4 was also a mistake, but only because I had a threat to take his rook by move 30. That also gave me the connected pawns on the queenside in addition to giving me an extra pawn.   Then of course, 46. Kg2 was the clearly losing move. At that point, I had about 2 minutes left, missed a few subsequent checkmates and had stopped recording my moves.
[Event “BAL”]
[Site “Stuytown”]
[Date “2013.03.14”]
[Round “6”]
[White “Peter Brizard”]
[Black “Mark Alban”]
[Result “0-1”]
[PlyCount “96”]
[TimeControl “G75”]

1. e4 c5
2. Nc3 Nc6
3. g3 e6
4. Bg2 Nf6
5. f4 d5
6. d3 d4
7. Nce2 Be7
8. h3 Qb6
9. Nf3 Bd7
10. O-O Rc8
11. Kh2 h5
12. Nh4 e5
13. Nf5 Bxf5
14. exf5 Bd6
15. Bxc6+ Rxc6
16. fxe5 Bxe5
17. Nf4 Kf8
18. Qf3 h4
19. g4 Qd8
20. Kg1 Rb6
21. g5 Bxf4
22. Qxf4 Nd5
23. Qe5 f6
24. gxf6 gxf6
25. Qe4 Qd6
26. Rf3 Kf7
27. c4 dxc3
28. bxc3 Nxc3
29. Qc4+ Qd5
30. Qxd5+ Nxd5
31. Bd2 Rg8+
32. Kh1 Rb2
33. Be1 Rh8
34. Rc1 b6
35. d4 cxd4
36. Rd3 Rh5
37. Rxd4 Rxf5
38. Bxh4 Rf3
39. Ra4 Rxh3+
40. Kg1 a5
41. Bf2 Rf3
42. Rf1 Rf4
43. Ra3 a4
44. Rd3 Rf5
45. Rh3 b5
46. Kg2 Nf4+
47. Kh2 Nxh3
48. Kxh3 Rfxf2

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