12 May 2012

Blitz Trouble

My Opponent's Stubbornness

Some folks just don't know when to give up. Not only do they play on in a hopeless position, but they create irritating little checkmate threats. Such was my adversary in a three minute blitz game this morning. After giving up a pawn through an elementary error, then sacrificing the exchange to avoid more troubling problems, my opponent took things down to the end. I had to use premoves to checkmate him before running out of time.

Gabriel (1759) -- Stripes (1740) [B40]
Live Chess Chess.com, 12.05.2012

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.0–0?

This elementary error loses a pawn.

4...Nxe4 5.d4 d5 6.Bb5+ Bd7 7.Bxd7+ Nxd7 8.Nc3 Nxc3 9.bxc3 Nf6 10.Bg5 Be7 11.Re1 0–0 12.dxc5 Qc7 13.Qd4

Black to move

13...Bxc5 14.Qh4 Ne4

14.Ne5 Bxc5 15.Qh4 Ne4 16.Rxe4 dxe4 17.Bf4 Bd6 18.Qg3 f6 19.Ng6 Bxf4 20.Nxf4 Qxc3 21.Qxc3 Rxc3 22.Nxe6

Black to move


Why not 22...Rxc2 23.Nxf8 Kxf8-+?

23.Nf4 Rxc2 24.h4 e3 25.fxe3 Rxe3 26.Rd1 Re8 27.Rd7 Rb2 28.a4 a6 29.h5 b5 30.axb5 Rxb5 31.h6 g5 32.Nd5

Black to move

32...Rxd5 Always simplify!

33.Rxd5 Ra8

From here it should be easy

White to move


My opponent finds a way to create problems. How did he know that his rook could get to a1 in the nick of time?

Less stubborn was the expected 34.Ra5 Kf7

34...a5 35.Rg7+ Kh8 36.Rf7 a4 37.Rxf6 a3 38.Rf1 a2 39.Ra1 Kg8 40.Kf2 Kf7 41.Kg3 Kg6 42.Kg4

Black to move


42...Ra4+ makes the game easier

43.Kf5 Ra5+ 44.Kf6 g4 45.g3

Black to move


45...Ra3 46.Rh1# would have been embarrassing.

46.Kf5 Ra4 47.Kf6 Ra6+ 48.Kf5

There is a danger of draw by repetition.

48...Kg7 49.Kxg4 Ra3 50.Kh4 Kg6 51.g4 h6 52.g5

Black to move

52...h5! 53.Re1 Ra4+ 54.Kh3 a1Q 55.Re6+ Kxg5 56.Re3 Ra3

White to move

Again things are simple, but I am down to five or six seconds

57.Rg3+ Rxg3+ 58.Kxg3 Qf6 59.Kg2 Qf4 60.Kh3

I have perhaps three and one-half seconds left, but am able to use premove, cutting my time per move to 0.01 seconds.

60...Qg4+ 61.Kh2 Kf4 62.Kh1 Kf3 63.Kh2 Kf2 64.Kh1 Qg2# 0–1


  1. Do like me and play with an increment. You'd be surprised how much less there is playing on in hopeless positions.

    1. I've tried playing with an increment. It denies me the rush I get when I prevail in desperate time trouble. For me, blitz is about the adrenaline rush and instant gratification. For quality chess, I play correspondence.