Joined: Sat May 10, 2008 3:37 pm
Location: Cambridge, MA
Rating Class: Expert (2000-2200)
Evan's Gambit Game
Here's an entertaining game that I played last week along with some (light) annotations:
This was my 5th game as white against my opponent. The first game, he played 3...Bc5 and I played the Evan's and lost.
The next 3 games he played the Two Knights and I scored 2.5/3 with 4.Ng5 against his Fritz defense.
I played the refutation, so after analyzing the opening, he decided to give up on it and go back to the Evan's Gambit.
Ok, that's enough of a backstory, to the game!
5...Ba5 Last time he played Be7 and I got a wonderful position before somehow trading off all the pieces to end up down two pawns. This time he played Ba5, and white's play is very forcing.
10.e5?! 10.e5 is inferior to 10.cxd4! but the lines are sharper (because black cannot castle). Black is objectively doing fine after trading the e pawn for the f pawn, but admittedly it's scary to face over the board.
12...Kf8 Kf8 and Kd8 are both moves, when I analyzed this (6-12 months ago) I decided that Kd8 was more accurate, but both moves are ok. If someone has thoughts on this, let me know, I'd be interested to hear your analysis or share some of my own.
14.Bc4 Because of Kf8, the bishop is attacked on f7 and needs to retreat. Otherwise Bb2 might be good. Qxa1 is never really a threat after Bc4 either because just Bb2 and black does not have enough for the queen.
14...Bb6? This passive move hurts black's position. The bishop was well placed to stop white from developing the Nb1 normally. Instead moves like Ng4 (threatening the king) or Bg4 (finishing development) would have been better. Note that Bg4 does not hang the b7 pawn because c4 hangs.
15.Nc3 Seems like the only logical way to take advantage of Bb6...
15...Bd7!? Looks like another passive move, but apparently the only way for black to develop. In the postmortem I criticized this move because of the game continuation, but upon further review, black is already in trouble. If you find any great improvements here, please let me know! The move that I expected in the game was Ng4 when after h3 black has to choose between Ne5 and Nf6. During the game I thought that Ng4 looked menacing, but I did not really work out all the variations because I trusted that white would be fine (black has too few attackers, and Nxf2 only succeeds in pinning the knight).
17...Bc6 I think this is another mistake. Nd5 is very strong, and white is probably much better already (even though it doesn't look like it). Black is essentially down two rooks.
18...Qg5 I seriously considered Nxd5 for black, sac-ing the queen for a rook and a piece. White has tremendous practical chances if he accepts the sac. More realistically, I would probably have declined the queen sac with Bxd5, and I don't see any good counterplay for black. Maybe black's best is 18...Nxd5 19.Bxd5 Ke7 20.Bxc6 bxc6 21.Rf3 and here white has a clear advantage, but is probably not yet winning.
19.Rg3 I considered Rg3 and Bc1 here, but ultimately decided that the bishop was no worse on a3 than on c1, and my opponent was starting to get into time trouble, so I wanted to play moves like Rg3 that were easy for me to work out, but harder for him (the time control was G/120).
19...Qe5? This blunder basically loses on the spot. Now Rg3 pays off.
21.Bxd4 I also looked at Re3, but after 21...Qg5 22.Bxd4 Bxd5 23.Bxd5 Qxd5 white is "only" winning a technical endgame with precise play. I will add that I analyzed all the way to Bd5 (as happened in the game) at this point and concluded that white was winning easily there.
Anyways, I was pleased with the game, and it redeemed (several of) my previous loses with the Evan's Gambit.
If you have any questions/comments, I'd love to hear them!
Joined: Sun Nov 27, 2011 6:14 am
Location: London, UK
Rating Class: Class C (1400-1600)
Re: Evan's Gambit Game
10. I agree it would be scary to face over the board
I'm actually going to save this game till i get home and do some proper analysis because it looks really interesting for both sides.
It is better to follow out a plan consistently even if it isn't the best one than to play without a plan at all. The worst thing is to wander about aimlessly. - Alexander Kotov