Blast from the Past: Lucas – Mansson, BPCF Open Championship Preliminary Round

My Black game against K.Lucas was marred by my opponents blunder of a piece on move 15, after which the result was never in doubt. At the point he blundered, Black was attempting to build an attack on the kingside, but it was not clear that he would make further progress.

Lucas, K – Mansson, James C., BPCF Open Championship P???

1.g3 d5 2.Bg2 Nf6

2…e5 is more precise if Black wants a reversed Pirc/Modern as in the game. 3.d3 Nf6 4.Nf3 Nc6 5.O-O transposes to the postion after White’s 5th move.

3.Nf3 Nc6

Black intends …e5, when White will most likely play d3 with a reversed Pirc/Modern.

4.O-O

4.d4 crosses Black’s intentions by stopping …e5. The Black knight may then be misplaced on c6.

4…e5 5.d3 Be6 6.Bg5 Be7

This is a good example of a reversed opening that works for Black. The
formation adopted is not over-ambitious, so White’s extra move doesn’t really count for much.

7.Nc3 d4

By analogy with the Pirc/Modern, Black has several options here of roughly
equal merit. The main alternatives to the move played are:

  • 7…O-O
  • 7…Qd7
  • 7…h6

8.Bxf6 gxf6

This is the more aggressive option, hoping to exploit the open g-file for an attack. Instead 8…Bxf6 is solid and safe.

9.Ne4 Qd7 10.Ned2 Bh3 11.e4 h5 12.Nh4 O-O-O 13.Bxh3 Qxh3 14.a3 Rdg8

Black has built up his attack in an obvious way, although how to proceed further is not obvious. However, his last move has an obvious enough threat that White completely overlooks.

15.Qf3??

A terrible blunder. 15.Kh1 looks safe enough. I am not entirely sure how Black should continue then. 15…Kb8 is one idea. Black avoids Qf3-f5, swapping queens. 16.Qf3 Qe6 demonstrates the basic idea. Still this is hardly clear cut.

15…Qxh4

Black wins a piece because of the pin. The rest requires no comment.

16.Qg2 Qg4 17.f3 Qg6 18.Kh1 h4 19.Qh3+ Kb8 20.g4 Qg5 21.Nb3 Bf8 22.c3 b6 23.cxd4 Nxd4 24.Nxd4 exd4 25.Rf2 Bd6 26.Kg2 Kb7 27.Rc2 Qe3 28.Rd1 Rg5 29.b4 c5 30.bxc5 Rxc5 31.Rcd2 Bf4 32.Rf2 Rc1 33.Rxc1 Qxc1 34.a4 Rc8 0-1

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