Open Praha 2012 – 2nd Round

Open PrahaMy opponent was a clubmate in the 2nd round. He is a good player, rated almost 200 ELO points higher than me. We played one game many years ago – I won the game and I consider it as one of my best games ever. But it was not significate for our game in the second round of this tournament. Not only because we had opposite colors this time ;)

I knew I should except difficult game. We played the Sicilian Defense. I was black and you may remember I try to learn this particular opening – and practising is the best way how to learn something.

We played the Sozin Attack, which I am not too familiar with. Now I know the more usual 7th move is 7…. b5 instead of 7…. Be7.

In my setup I also had to be careful because of possibility of White’s sacrifice on e6 square – Bxe6 fxe6 could be followed by Nxe6 with a possible fork in some variants.

I was too slow on queenside and White was able to push his a-pawn on a5 square and bishop on b6, which was not too comfortable for Black.

I found a way how to exchange the bishop on b6 and then even open queenside.

After 18…. Qb7 I tried to offer a draw and my opponent accepted it. Why I offered a draw in so early stage? I thought my position is not so bad (in fact according Fritz it is equal) and I created some threats on the diagonal h1-a8 and against pawn on e4. The fact is it could be covered quite easily. On the other side there were no direct tactical threats against my position. I have to admit I did not calculate the move 19.f5, which we analyzed after the game and we found that White had always advantage. But – as I noted above – Fritz “thinks” the position is equal even after 19.f5.

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