Chess Spring Tournament – Round 2

Every five years or so I play and read a lot of chess, and even when I’m not in such an activity period I try to play in the company chess tournament. I typically finish 2nd of 6 in the lowest bracket. If I had a chess ELO rating, it’d probably be about a 1300.

Today I played a game against Michael Thomas, who I hadn’t played before. He seemed to be of comparable strength though better prepared. I made a PGN Viewer version of the game, or at least what I remember of it–I know some moves are wrong. Black played the Sicilian defense, and I soon felt like I was wandering around aimlessly through the middle game. He got a positional advantage but failed to press it for anything tangible. Though discouraged during the middle game, I decided I should be able to hold on to a draw if I could simplify the position, possibly giving up the exchange (my rook for his bishop).

After White
A series of trades got me to a mostly equal position by move 25 or so when I saw that getting my knight to c6 would tie Black’s pieces down temporarily to avoid a back row mate and at the same time would set a trap for his rook. He fell for the trap at move 29 by taking the “poison” pawn, and I went up a knight for a pawn after setting up a fork.
White to move and win (or draw)
Unfortunately, I was still happy to get a draw and played too conservatively, missing the last chance for a win on move 50. I’m sure it’s not often you can be up two pawns to none and still draw. Michael knew what to do and didn’t give me another chance.

2 thoughts on “Chess Spring Tournament – Round 2

  1. Good game! The rook/bishop trade to set up the fork was clever. I wondered why Michael didn’t take your pawn and threaten the knight on move 24.
    I would have made the same move as you on 50, Michael was quick to take advantage.

  2. Rxe4 looks OK to me, too, Tom, with White getting a pawn and a knight for a bishop. Checking with the computer, I see that because the bishop capture is with check White has time to get back and protect the knight.

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