Wednesday, February 19, 2014

English Opening, King's English Variation Kramnik-Shirov Counter

Villa de Canada de Calatrava, 2007

1. c4, e5
2. Nc3, Bb4

The Kramnik-Shirov Counter of the King's English Variation.

3. Qc2, Nf6
4. a3, Bxc3
5. Qxc3, Nc6
6. b4, 0-0
7. e3, d5
8. cxd5, Qxd5
9. b5, Nd4!

An ingenuous way of opening the e-file.  Note that White has not yet castled.

10. exd4, exd4
11. Qc4, Re8+
12. Kd1 ....

White loses his Queen after 12. Be2 or Ne2.

12. .... Qh5+
13. Be2, Qg6
14. Nf3, Be6

If 14....Qxg2, then Black replies with 15. Rg1 followed by 16. Bb2 and Black has a better position.

15. Qc2 ....

If 15. Qxd4, Black attacks with 15....Bb3+ Ke1, 16. Rad6 with attacking possibilities.

15. .... d3!
16. Qxd3 ....

Not 16....Bxd3 because Black replies with Qxg2, threatening both the Knight and the Rook.

16. .... Bf5
17. Qc4, Rxe2!!

A brilliant move.  If White's Queen captures the Rook, Black replies with 18....Bd3 followed by Re8 with a mating threat.

If 17....Kxe2, then 17....Bd3+, 18. Qxd3 Re8+ and White loses his Queen.

18. Nh4, Qh5
19. Qxe2 ....

White has forgotten an earlier threat.

19. .... Bc2+
20. Ke1, Re8
21. Qxe8, Nxe8

White resigns.  Black threatens Qe5+.  Now, if 22. Nf3 Qxb5 prevents White from castling and mobilizing his pieces. Then, if 23. Ra2 Qc4, 24. Rb2 Qe4+ and mate follows shortly.

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