Friday, May 31, 2019

Malaysian Chess Championship - Round 5 : Yeap Eng Chiam vs Looi, Xin Hao

Yeap Eng Chiam (2074) vs   Looi Xin Hao  (2157) 
Malaysian Chess Championship
Round 5, 31.5.2019, Kuantan, Pahang

Yap Eng Chiam (left) vs Looi Xin Hao. Photo from Azhar Said

1. d4 Nf6 2. Bf4  The London System. About 5 years back this was basically considered an amatuer opening but after top guns like Carlsen, Grischuk played it occasionally in recent years, this opening has become quite trendy. Another point is usually white will play 2.Nf3 first and only then 3.Bf4 but nowadays 2.Bf4 has been played to enter enter/avoid a certain line.   

2...e6 3. e3 c5 4. c3 b6 5. Nd2 cxd4 6. exd4 Bb7 7. Ngf3 d6 8. Bd3 Be7 9. Qe2 Nbd7 10. O-O O-O 11. Rad1 Re8  12. Bg3 sensing that black preparing to play e5  

12...Bf8 13. Rfe1 make it harder for black to push e5

13...Qc7 14. Ng5 

14...a6  but now 14... e5 will make the f7 weak for e.g. 15. Bc4 Re7 16. Ndf3 h6 17. Nxf7 Rxf7 18. dxe5 with an attack

15. f4 b5 16. Bc2 h6 17. Nge4 Bd5 18. Bh4 Be7 19. Bxf6 Bxf6 20. Qd3 Bh4 21. g3 Bd8 22. Nf2 Nf8  covering the critical h7 square. 

23. f5 Qd7 24. fxe6 Rxe6 25. Bb3 Bxb3 26. axb3 Bb6 27. Ra1  Qb7 28. Qf3 d5 ?! i don't like this move because after b4 later by white, black's bishop looks bad.

29. Nd3 Rae8 30. b4 Rxe1+ 31. Rxe1 Rxe1+ 32. Nxe1 Ne6 33. Nd3 Ng5 34. Qe2 Qc8 35. Nc5 Qf5 36. Qe8+ Kh7 37. Nd7 Bxd4+ 

This looks like a mistake but actually black seems to have a force draw. another way to draw is 37... Qc2!? 38. Nf8+ Kh8 39. Ne6+ Kh7 40. Nf8+ Kh8 41. Nd7+ Kh7 42. Nf8+ white has nothing but to repeat moves (42. Nxb6? Qxd2 and it is black who will win with the deadly threat of Nf3+) 

38. cxd4  Now white is a clear piece up.

38...h5?? the decisive mistake. 38... Qd3!  interestingly white has nothing concrete then forcing a draw with 39. Nf8+ Kg8 40. Nd7+ Kh7 

39. Qe2 g6 40. Ne5 Qc2 41. Qd3 Qxb2 42. h4 Ne6 43. Nxf7 Nxd4 44. Ne5 Nf5 45. Qxd5 Qc1+ 46. Kf2 Kh6 47. Nf7+ Kg7 48. Ng5 Kf6 49. Qe6+ 1-0  Black resign because mate can't be stop Kg7 50. Qf7+ Kh8 51. Qf8#

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