My opponent in this game, also a Correspondence Chess Senior International Master, was the second player in this event who spoke excellent English (as opposed to my less than zero knowledge of Slovenian!). Hence, as in the first game of this article, an interesting conversation took place along with sending chess moves. One point discussed was holiday locations and it was suggested by my opponent Slovenia was a nice country to visit. This was supported by sending a remarkable series of pictures of various towns and natural locations around Slovenia. Previously unknown to me, Slovenia is indeed a country of great natural beauty and pleasant looking historic towns, hence a visit to that country may well now take place!
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f3 0-0 6.Nge2 Far from the commonest move I use when employing the Samisch-more often [6.Be3 ; and 6.Bg5 are selected but I hoped to be able to employ an improvement found when annotating an earlier game of mine.]
6...c5 7.d5 [7.Be3 Holding the central tension is the other White method which I chose against Ponomarev in the Slade Milan Memorial event of 2008 which went 7...Nc6 8.d5 Ne5 9.Ng3 e6 10.Be2 exd5 11.cxd5 a6 12.Qd2 b5 13.0-0 Re8 14.Bh6~~ ]
7...e6 8.Ng3 White keeps e3 and d2 free to redeploy the knight, after Be2 and Nf1, should Black play h5-h4.
8...exd5 9.cxd5 A position that can also arise from the the Modern Benoni Opening. [Instead 9.exd5 is worth considering, for example, after 9...a6 10.Be2 b5 11.cxb5 axb5 12.Bxb5 Ba6 13.0-0 Nfd7 14.Nge4 White had a very good version of a type of Benko Gambit in Gofshtein-Smirin, Israel 1992.]
9...Nbd7 10.Be2 a6 11.a4 The most usual limiting Black's queen-side counter-play. However, allowing b5 is an idea that has become more common in these sort of structures when White can retard the pawns with a3 or attack them with a4. One example went [11.0-0 b5 12.a3 c4 13.Be3 Qc7 14.Qd2 Nc5 15.Bd1 Lewis-Spivack, 4NCL 2001.]
11...h5 12.Bg5 By delaying the development of the Bc1 White can thus prevent h4 and at least temporarily pins the Nf6. [12.Bf4 Qc7 13.Qd2 h4 14.Nf1 was good for White in Mfune-Chatterjee, Khanty-Maniysk Olympiad 2010 but 12...h4 is better.]
12...Qc7 The most common although Black may deploy the queen to a5, b6 or even e8.
13.0-0 c4 14.Be3 This is the move found after analysing the following game just after after its completion. [14.Nh1 Nc5 15.Bxc4 Nfxe4 16.fxe4 Bxc3 17.bxc3 Nxe4 18.Bh6 Qxc4 19.Bxf8 Kxf8 20.Qd4 Qxd4+ 21.cxd4 and despite a material deficiency Black held the ending very comfortably in Donnelly (ENG)-Serazeev(RUS), RCCA Gold 2011. However, I was to discover Be3 can't be claimed as an innovation, in particular within the time frame of a correspondence game, as it had been played earlier, around about the same time in games not yet in databases, and also played since. These facts illustrates the difficulties, and the need, to keep databases right up to date.]
14...Nc5 Other options seem slightly better for White too eg [14...h4 15.Nh1 Nc5 16.a5 (16.Ra2 Bd7 17.a5 Rfe8 18.Nf2 Nb3 19.Bb6 Qc8 20.Qe1 Matveeva-Schmidt, W-Cup 20 sf03 ICCF 2015.) 16...Nb3 17.Bb6 Qe7 18.Ra3 Walczak-Kain, W-ch 38 sf01 ICCF 2014.; 14...Rb8 15.Qd2 h4 16.Nh1 Nc5 (16...h3 17.Nf2 hxg2 18.Kxg2 Nh5 19.f4 Nhf6 20.Bf3 via transposition with an early Qd2 in Anand-Nakamura, Tal Memorial Moscow 2011. (20.Rac1 b5 21.b4 (also via an earlier Qd2) Morley-Kazoks, ESP MG1/C ICCF 2015.) ) 17.Bxc4 (17.Ra3 Sachdev-Van Dael, Hoogeveen open 2017.) 17...Ncxe4 (again via an earlier Qd2) Svetushkin-Markidis, Kavala open 2006.]
15.e5 dxe5 16.Bxc4 Ne6 17.Ba2 Nd4 18.Rc1 [This straightforward move (which is, I think, an innovation !) facing off with the Black queen is preferable to a game I came across a few moves prior to reaching this position: 18.Qd2 Bd7 19.h3 h4 20.Nge4 Nxe4 Faridani-Jones, NAPZ/WS/M/14 ICCF 2014.; 18.Bxd4 exd4 19.Qxd4 wins a pawn but, as is common in the KID, Black gets good compensation as the Bg7 is now very active after 19...Ne8 20.Qd2 Qb6+ 21.Kh1 Nd6 ]
18...Bd7 [There are several hidden tactical lines here such as 18...Qb6 19.Qd2 Qb4 20.h3 Ne8 21.Bh6 Bxh6 22.Qxh6 Qxb2 23.d6 Be6 (23...Nxd6 24.Nd5 ) 24.Nce4+- ]
19.Qd2 Qb6 20.h3 Rae8 [White was threatening to destabilise the Nd4 which occurs after 20...Bh6 21.f4+- (but not 21.Bxh6 Nxf3+-+ ) ]
21.Kh1 Qb4 [Not 21...h4 22.Nge4 Nxe4 23.Nxe4 Bxa4 24.f4 Qa7 25.fxe5 Bxe5 26.d6+- ]
22.Nge4 Nxe4 Black now has problems as illustrated by the lines [22...a5 23.Nxf6+ Bxf6 24.Ne4 Bg7 25.Rc4 ; and 22...Bxa4 23.Nxf6+ Bxf6 24.Ne4 Be7 25.Nf6+ Kg7 26.Bh6+ Kxf6 27.Qg5# hence goes for the win of a pawn as some compensation for the impending loss of the exchange.]
23.Nxe4 Qxd2 [23...Qxa4 leaves the queen out of play after 24.b4 Bf5 25.Nc5 Qa3 26.d6 with a very strong initiative.]
24.Bxd2 [24.Nxd2 is poor due to 24...Ne2 25.Rc7 Ng3+ 26.Kg1 Nxf1 27.Kxf1 Bxa4 ]
24...Bxa4 [24...Rc8 saves the exchange but leaves Black struggling to hold back the d-pawn after 25.d6 Be6 26.Bxe6 Nxe6 27.Ba5 ]
25.Bb4 Bc2 26.Rf2 Bxe4 27.fxe4 Nb5 Best aiming to blockade d6 as [27...Rc8 28.Rxc8 Rxc8 29.d6 Ne6 30.d7 Rd8 31.Bxe6 fxe6 32.Rd2+- ; or 27...Bh6 and 28.Rc7 Be3 29.Rf1+- ]
28.g3 Avoiding Black fixing the pawns with h4.
28...a5 29.Bxf8 Kxf8 [If 29...Bxf8 the temporary return of a pawn allows White to make inroads into Black's position. 30.d6 Nxd6 31.Rcf1 Re7 32.Rf6 Rd7 (32...Nxe4 33.Rxf7 Nxg3+ (33...Rxf7 34.Rxf7 ) 34.Kg2+- ) 33.Rxg6++- ]
30.Rcf1 Re7 [30...Nd6 doesn't quite work due to 31.Rxf7+ Nxf7 32.d6+- ]
31.d6 Nxd6 32.Rd1 Ne8 33.Rd5 A gain of tempo that leaves Black in difficulties in defending all of a5, b7, f7 and e5.
33...a4 34.h4 Bh6 35.Rxe5 [35.Ra5 is less accurate as Black's pieces become active via 35...Be3 36.Re2 Bd4 37.Rxa4 Nf6 ]
35...Nd6 [35...Rxe5 fails to 36.Rxf7+ Kg8 37.Rf5+ Kg7 38.Rxe5+- ]
36.Rxe7 Kxe7 37.e5 Nf5 38.Rc2 Bg7 39.Rc7+ Kd8 40.Rxf7 b5 41.Rb7 [Not 41.Rxg7 Nxg7 42.Bf7 Ke7 43.Bxg6 b4 44.Kg2 as 44...Ke6 allows Black to draw.]
41...Bxe5 [Or 41...Nxg3+ 42.Kg2 Nf5 43.Bb1 Bxe5 44.Bxf5 gxf5 45.Rxb5 Bf6 46.Kg3+- ]
42.Rxb5 Bxg3 43.Rb4 Bxh4 [Also losing is 43...Nxh4 44.Rxa4 Nf5 45.Bf7 Be5 46.b4+- ]
44.Rxa4 Bf6 45.b4 Nd6 46.Bb1 g5 47.Bg6 h4 48.Bd3 Bc3 49.b5 [With all White's pieces on white squares and all Black's on dark ones the following is a representative line where White wins. 49.b5 Kd7 50.Be2 Be5 51.Ra7+ Ke6 52.b6 Bd4 53.Ra6 Ke5 54.Bf3 Bc5 55.Ra5 Kd4 56.b7 Nxb7 57.Bxb7 The white squared bishop can blackade the two pawns and then later in combination with the K and R join in the attack on the Black king.] 1-0