Horsham Club Championship 2018-19: A.Taylor – Mansson

Following my disappointing draw in my first Club Championship game, it was good to get back on track with a win. Playing Black against Alex Taylor, I obtained a better engame after 15 moves; although he defended well for a while, ultimately he was unable to defend it.

I give the game below with some notes.

Taylor, Alex – Mansson, James C, Horsham Club Championship (Rook) 2018.10.09

1. e4 e5 2. f4 exf4 3. Nf3 g5 4. Nc3

4. h4 g4 5. Ne5 is the traditional main line, although Black seems to be doing alright there.

4… Bg7

This is the safe option.

4… g4 is more ambitious, looking to win more material.

5. d4 d6 6. g3 Nc6

6… g4 7. Nh4 f3 is interesting.

7. d5 Ne5 8. gxf4 gxf4 9. Bxf4 Bg4 10. Be2 Nxf3+ 11. Bxf3 Bxc3+ 12. bxc3 Qf6 13. Bxg4 Qxf4 14. Qf3 Qxf3 15. Bxf3 Ne7

This endgame looks very promising for Black due to his knight being stronger than the bishop, his outpost on e5 and the weakness of the White pawns.

16. Rg1 Ng6 17. Kd2 Ke7 18. Raf1 Rhg8 19. Ke3 Rg7 20. Rg3 Rag8 21. Rfg1 Kf8

21… Kf6 was more active.

22. Kd4 Ne5 23. Be2 Rxg3 24. Rxg3 Rxg3 25. hxg3 Kg7 26. c4 b6 27. Kc3 Kg6 28. Kd4 Kg5 29. Ke3 a5 30. Kf2 f6 31. Ke3 h6 32. c3 Nd7 33. Bd1 Nc5 34. Kd4 Kg6 35. Bg4 h5 36. Bd1 Kg5 37. Ke3 Nd7 38. Be2 Ne5 39. Kf2 Ng6 40. Ke3 Ne7 41. Kf3 f5 42. Bd3 Ng6 43. Be2?

Up to this point White had defended resolutely, but now he slips up.

43. exf5 looks defensible for White, e.g.

  • 43… Ne7 44. f6 Kxf6 45. Kf4
  • 43… Ne5+ 44. Ke4 Nxd3 45. Kxd3 Kxf5 46. Ke3 Kg4 47. Kf2

43… f4

Now Black creates a passed pawn which should – and does – prove decisive.

44. gxf4+ Nxf4 45. Bf1 h4 46. a4 Ng6 47. Bh3 Ne5+ 48. Ke3 Nxc4+ 49. Kd4 Nb2 50. e5 dxe5+ 51. Kxe5 Nxa4 52. c4 Nb2 53. Ke6 a4 54. Kd7 a3 55. Kxc7 a2 56. d6 a1=Q 57. d7 Qa7+ 58. Kc8 Qa8+ 59. Kc7 Nxc4 60. Bg2 Qf8 61. d8=Q+ Qxd8+ 62. Kxd8 Kf4 63. Kc7 Kg3 64. Bh1 b5 65. Kc6 b4 66. Kc5 Ne3 67. Kxb4 h3 68. Kc3 Ng2 69. Kd2 Kh2 0-1

White resigned as Black either forces the exchange of bishop or wins it. Note that White
cannot trap the Black king in front of the rook’s pawn, e.g. 70. Ke2 Kxh1:

  • 71. Kf2 Kh2 72. Kf1 Kg3 73. Kg1 Ne3 74. Kh1 Ng4 75. Kg1 h2+ 76. Kh1 Nf2#
  • 71. Kf1 h2 72. Kf2 Ne3! (The neatest way to get the Black king out
    of the corner.) 73. Kxe3 Kg2 wins.
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