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 Moshe Khatena (2250) - A.J. Goldsby I (2220) 
The Pensacola Quarterly,  Microtel Inn; 
Pensacola, FL  (Round # 2);   06.05.2000


  [A.J. Goldsby I]  

  You should probably use a chess set. The Diagrams are only meant as an aid to your analysis.  

  Click  HERE  to see this game on a js-replay board. 

  MODEL GAME {for}  Defense, and Sacrifice.  

The following was played in the Pensacola Spring Quarterly. I won this tournament despite the 
presence of many strong players. This included Stephen Mohammed - a Senior Master - from 
Atlanta, GA. (Whom I defeated in the next round, also with the Black pieces!) 

Moshe is very nearly a legend, as far as I am concerned. He was a FIDE-Rated Master 
before he was out of his teens. He has played in many tournaments, including the 
New York
and World Opens.  He is a contemporary of all the great Junior players 
of the 1970's. (Whitehead, Dlugy, etc.) 
He played in several U.S. Junior Opens and also the international tournament, 
"The Bar Point Open." To have him move to live to Pensacola was a boon to 
chess in this area. (And for me!) 

The game features a good opening by White. Then perhaps one small inaccuracy (by Black) hands the initiative over to White. Black does not despair, but plays good defense. When the opportunity presents itself, Black strikes out and plays a very strong move, sacrificing an exchange to slow White's attack. 

The game position then becomes critical, with both sides having many opportunities. 
My opponent was very short of time during the final phase of the game. Perhaps this 
is why he was not able to find the best moves. 

(Moshe outplays me completely in the opening. At one point, his game appears very strong; 
 in fact it looks nearly overwhelming.) 

Then I sacrifice an Exchange to break White's attack. 

The computer, after a VERY lengthy and intense analysis, verified that the sack was sound. 

The struggle becomes very intense, with White losing the thread of the game during severe time pressure. 

I was also very nervous during this game. Many players felt very uncomfortable about playing Moshe. Moshe,  ( under his <handle>,  '______'  on ICC );  had built up some impressive ratings on the Internet, including one of the highest BLITZ ratings in the entire South-East 
United States at that time!!!    (He specifically requested I remove his handle.)   

(I also want to add that Moshe has lived in the Pensacola area for a very long time, and that 
 we had played each other in tournaments MANY times.) 

1. e4 c52. b3


 The early QB fianchetto variation of the Sicilian, a specialty of Moshe's!  (my-bg_2_d-1.jpg, 22KB)

A favorite of Moshe's. He has won many nice games with this line.  

(I think this is called, "The Schneider Sicilian." {Snyder?} 
Moshe has several books and pamphlets on this line.) 

Anyone who has the program,  "ChessMaster 7000,"  can see the game where Moshe 
played this line against IM Josh Waitzkin at a tournament in Bermuda - in the 1990's. 

2...d63. Bb2 Nf64. Bb5+ Bd7; (Maybe - '!') 
It is better not to allow White to double your pawns here. 

  [ 4...Nc6!?; 5.Bxc6+ bxc6; 6.d3, and Black's pawn structure makes it difficult 
    to find a good diagonal for his Queen's Bishop. ].


5. Bxd7+ Qxd7!?; (Maybe - '!') 
I have always preferred this move to 5...Nbxd7.  But it is not 100% clear which one is best. 
(I personally like the idea of keeping ...Nc6 as an option.)  

  [  5...Nbxd7!?;  ]  


6. Qe2 e67. f4 Nc68. Nf3 Be79. 0-0 0-010. d3 b5!
Black gains some necessary space.

11. Nbd2 Qc7!
Necessary, to give the KN another square. (See the diagram just below.) 

  A very interesting and un-balanced position has arisen - - - with plenty of chances for both sides. (my-bg_2_d-2.jpg, 21 KB)

12. c4 a6
About here I felt the game was almost even. Maybe White is just a little bit better.  ("+/=") 

13. Kh1!, 
A very good move, removing the King from the g-file AND the dark squares of the g1-a7 
diagonal. White is also preparing the possibility of g2-g4, sacrificing a pawn to open the g-file. 

Withdrawing the Knight before White has a chance to kick it with g4-g5. I felt this was a great potential attacking, (g2-g4) scheme for White. So therefore, I logically avoid it - in its entirety. 

 [ The move that allowed White to completely realize his plan was: 13...Rab8!?; 
   14.g4!? Nxg4!;  15.Rg1!,   (During the post-mortem, Moshe gave: 15.Bxg7?! Kxg7 
     16.Rg1 f5
; 17.h3 h5; "/+"  but Black clearly comes out on top.)    5...Nf6; 16.Qg2, "--->"   
    and White has a very strong attack, and good compensation for the material.  ] 


Now Black has withdrawn from the center, so White breaks there.  
14. d4! Nxd4!;  
Black must remove some material from the board to equalize. 

(Most Masters will tell you that a sure way to relieve the pressure when you are cramped or 
under attack is to exchange a few sets of pieces. Just make sure you don't make the - very
common - mistake of exchanging off your ONLY developed (or well-posted) pieces ...  
as this could leave your opponent with an overwhelming position.).  

15. Nxd4 cxd416. Bxd4 bxc4!?;  (Maybe - '?!')
Moshe [perhaps rightly] questioned this, as it brings the White Knight strongly into play. 

  [ Probably the best for Black was: 16...Rab8!?; 17.cxb5 axb5; 18.Rac1, "+/=" 
    when White's advantage is minimal. ].  


17. Nxc4 Rae8!?;  (Maybe - '!') 
A very creative move, of which I was very proud. 

Black defends everything by indirect threats and counter-attacks. 

18. Rac1,  
White continues to press Black. 

  [ Not as accurate is: 18.e5!? f6; 19.exf6 Bxf6; 20.Bxf6 Nxf6; "~"  when the 
    position is somewhat murky. ]


18...Qb819. Na5 Bf6[];  {Box?} 
19...Bf6; is probably forced.  (That is what "box" means in  'Informant'  speak.) 

20. Bxf6 Nxf621. e5!,
A critical position in the game. 

(See the diagram just below.) 

  The position after White's 21st move. The game has reached a critical stage.  (my-bg_2_d-3.jpg, 19 KB)

21. e5! is the best move here. White gains space on the K-side as a prelude to an attack.  
(Remember that Tarrasch said - you should always attack on the side of the board where 
 you have more space.) 

One of the main points of the move e5, is that it drives away one of the very best defenders 
of Black's King-side ... and of Black's King! 

The move 21. e5! is also a prelude to a very dangerous K-side attack. 

  [ Not clearly in White's favor is : 21.Nc6!? Qb5; "~"  when Black has some counterplay. ]


This is forced. 

  [ 21...Nd7??; 22.Nc6 Qb7;   (Not 22...Qc7??; 23.Ne7+,  wins Black's Queen. "+/-");  
23.exd6, "+/" or  "+/-." ].  


22. fxe5 Nd5!;  
The Knight goes to its outpost. 
(At least I do not have to worry about the safety of my Knight!) 

  [ Inferior was: 22...Nd7?!;  23.Nc6,  "+/"  when White is clearly better. 
    Much, much better. ].


23. Nc4! Qb524. Qh5!?,
White has developed a very promising attack.

 (See for yourself, diagram just below.) 

 The actual game position after White played 24. Qh5.  White's position looks very threatening. (my-bg_2_d-4.jpg, 19)

A very aggressive move. White attacks the King-Side and prepares to pile up on the 
f7-square. (White's attack LOOKS very menacing. Several strong players who were 
watching this game thought White was winning.) 

Moshe told me after the game, he sincerely believed he was winning here.

  [ Possibly better was: 24.Qg4!?,  and White can play the same idea in the game, but 
    c4 is protected. (This was pointed out by Moshe after the game.) The drawback to 
    this idea is that it does NOT pressure f7 and h7. (Which was exactly what Moshe 
    was trying to do.) ]  


Setting a small trap. 

25. Rce1!,  (White is clearly better. "+/=" or "+/"
The most accurate. White is preparing a King-side attack. 

  [ The trap is : 25.Nd6!? Rxc1; 26.Nxb5??,    ( The only reasonable move for  
      White is: 26.Rxc1 Qa5; "~" {Or maybe slightly better for White.} )    26...Rxf1#.  ].  


A sneaky move, that appears to do almost nothing!

But I was already preparing the sacrifice on c4. 

  [ Its too early to sack on c4 just yet, i.e: 25...Rxc4?; 26.bxc4 Qxc4; 
    27.Qe2!, "+/" or "+/-." ]


26. Rf3 h6!?;
An interesting position. 

 (See the diagram just below.) 

 The current game position. Black has just played ...h6!?  What does this move accomplish? (my-bg_2_d-5.jpg, 18 KB)

A very sad-looking move that appears to weaken the K-side. 

But it is a VERY IMPORTANT part of Black's defensive plans!!

The move, ...h6; gives luft to Black's King and prevents any later back-rank mates. 
It also prevents an immediate Rh3 by White. Black is also continuing to prepare 
an ingenious sacrifice. 

27. Ref1!?,

 The current position, White is ganging up on f7. (my-bg_2_d-6.jpg, 18 KB)


White's position looks nearly overwhelming. 

He attacks f7 three times, and can attack that square once more with Nd6. 

How does Black defend? 

  [  White could have played 27.a4!?;  But not 27.Rh3?? Nf4; "-/+" ].  


27...Rxc4!!;  (Maybe - '!!!')  
An incredible move. 

I consider it perhaps one of the finest defensive ideas of my entire chess career. 

 (See the diagram just below.) 

  Black has just played 27...Rxc4!!! It is one of the most incredible moves of my entire chess career.  (my-bg_2_d-7.jpg, 18 KB)
The actual game position after Black 
plays the move, 27...Rxc4!!!

After the game, Moshe kept saying he could not believe this sacrifice worked!! 
(Even the computers do not spot this sacrifice immediately.) 
{The comments above were true when I first wrote these comments. 
They may not be true today, however.}  


Black gets a pawn and a Knight for the exchange. Black also gets a very strong initiative. 
His remaining three pieces are very well co-ordinated. 

( All of White's pieces are getting in each others way, [very poor coordination]; he (White) 
  has a weak first rank, and there are Knight forks everywhere. On top of this, Moshe 
  had about 12 minutes to make the time control at move 45. )  


  [  Passive defense with: 27...Qb7; 28.Nd6 Qa7; 29.g4, "--->"  looked hopeless. ].  


28. bxc4, 
No choice here. 

  [ Not 28.Rxf7? Rf4!; "-/+" and Black is winning. ].  


28...Qxc429. h3!?,  
White provides some breathing space for his King. 

  (See the diagram just below.)  

   White's King cries: "Help! I need air!"   (my-bg_2_d-8.jpg, 18 KB)


White finally realizes the need for some, "luft."  
(To free his pieces from back-rank threats.) 

29. g3 does not look so great either, but at least there would have been fewer forks. 
(After the game, Moshe said he felt the exposure on the long diagonal would be disastrous.) 


   [ The following looks good, but falls into a diabolical trap.  29.Rxf7.  This move looks 
      good, even winning. But in reality - it is a horrible mistake. ('?/??')

      Now Black will play:  29...Qxf1+!;     (29...Rb8?; 30.Qg6 "+/-"     30.Rxf1, 
      and now  - - -  30...Rxf1#.   OUCH!!!  

  A nice little mate!  (my-bg_2_d-9.jpg, 16 KB)   
(Analysis Diagram.) 

     A very sneaky trap and a HUGE pitfall for White. 

     This snare is a fundamental part of Black's plans!   ].  


The idea of this move is to block the f-file, which is White's best open line for his Rooks. 

30.  Rg1!?,  
A very sad square for this Rook. Maybe 30. Rb1!? was playable. 

  [ Not 30.Rxe3?? Qxf1+; 31.Kh2 Qf4+; 32.Rg3 Rc8; "-/+"  and Black is winning easily. ]


30...Nf5;  Black is defending actively!  
Black is doing well now. 

 (See the diagram just below.) 

  Black is defending, the Black Knight is very active.  (my-bg_2_d-10.jpg, 18 KB)

Now Black is blocking the f-file. Prior to the sack, this was White's main source of play! 

This is also a very strong square for the Knight. 

Right around here, Moshe offers me a draw. (I declined, as I felt I was OK.).  

31. a3!?
White wanted to save his a-pawn from a Queen capture. 

  [ Not 31.g4?? g6;  and White's Queen is trapped. ].  


Picking off the e-pawn.

It also prevents a counter-sacrifice on f5, perhaps equalizing. 

(White has saved his QRP, but lost his e-pawn. He could NOT save both.) 

32. Qg4 Qxe533. Rf4 Rd8!;  ( Black is clearly better, or "/+". )    
The main idea of this move is to kick the White Rook and then play ...Rd4! 

  [ Several players suggested: 33...h5!?;  (after the game!);  but after a very long 
     analyses over the board, I felt it was unclear. ].  


34. Qf3,  
Black now has good play.

  (See the diagram just below.)  

  The actual game position after 34. Qf3. Moshe asks for a draw.  (my-bg_2_d-11.jpg, 17 KB)

  Here Moshe offered a draw ...   

  [ A good illustration of the power of the Knight is: 34.Re4?? Qxe4!;  
      ( Also winning is: 34...Ng3+; 35.Qxg3,   (Or 35.Kh2?? Nf1+; 36.Kh1 Qh2#);     
        35...Qxg3; "-/+"  but I prefer to get as much material off the board as possible. )   
    35.Qxe4 Ng3+;  Boom! Fork.  36.Kh2 Nxe4; "-/+"  Black has an overwhelming 
    material advantage. ].  


(I felt I was OK here. The position was very interesting, and I even sensed a certain amount 
 of nervousness from my opponent. In addition to this, Moshe was running short of time.) 

  ... which I felt I should not accept, so I continued to play.  

  I could have played 34...Rd4!? I did NOT have a ton of time here, so I was unable 
     to subject this possibility to a thorough analysis. ]


35. Rg4,  
This Rook does not have many good squares to go to. 

  [ 35.Re4?? Qxe4!; 36.Qxe4 Ng3+; 37.Kh2 Nxe4; "-/+" ]


Black naturally grabs the open file.

  (See the diagram just below)  

  Black just grabbed the open file and is at least slightly better.  (my-bg_2_d-12.jpg, 17 KB)
(Black just played 35...Rc8;)

Black is better and has a powerful initiative. But White does not necessarily have to lose. 

36. Rd1?,  (Maybe - '??')  
The losing move. But White is also setting a trap. (In time pressure.) 

  [ Forced was: 36.Rb1 Rc3; "-/+" and Black is better, much better; ... 
     but not clearly winning. ].  


36...Rc3;  (Possibly - '!')  
The best. 

  [ 36...Ne3??; 37.Re4 Qxe4;    (37...Qf5??; 38.Qxe3, "+/-"  38.Qxe4 Nxd1;  
    and Black must struggle just to make a draw.  (39.Qb7, "+/").  ].  


37. Qf2,  (Maybe - '!?')  
White does not have much choice. 

   [ A truly beautiful tactical idea is: 37.Qa8+!? ('?!')  37...Kg7; 38.Qxa6!?    (38. Qa7!?)  
       38...Ne3; 39.Re1?,    ( Or 39.Rgd4 Nxd1; 40.Rxd1 Qe4; "/+"  or "-/+." )    39...Nxg4!;  
       40.Rxe5, (?)  40...Rc1+!; with mate in two. (Back-Rank!!!)  ].  


37...Ne338. Re1 Nxg4;  ("-/+") 
Counterattacking the White Queen, making the pin on the e-file meaningless. 

39. hxg4,  
White is lost. 

Black is up two pawns (!!) 
and ... White's pawn cover in front of his King has been shattered. 

  [ 39.Rxe5?? Nxf2+; 40.Kg1 Nxh3+!; 41.gxh3 Rxa3; "-/+" ].  


39...Qg340. Qd2 Rd3!;  
Black does not allow Qd1+. 

41. Qa5 Rd4!;  
Black is obviously much, MUCH better here.  

  (See the diagram just below.)  

  The actual game position after 41...Rd4. Black is much better, probably winning.  (my-bg_2_d-13.jpg, 16 KB)

I continue to find the best move for Black. 

With his next move, White threatens a sneaky mate. 

42. Rf1!,  (Probably - '!!') 
White now threatens to play Qd8+,  with a mating combination. 

   [ White could  also play 42.Qe5. ] 


42...Rf4!;  (Nice.) 
Black just avoided a VERY nasty trap!

My move (...Rf4) stops all of White's threats. 

   [  A terrible mistake would be: 42...Rxg4??;  Black threatens a mate in one, but now 
      White attacks, & every move is a check. 43.Qd8+ Kg7;     (Or 43...Kh7; 44.Rxf7+)    
44.Qf6+ Kg8;  45.Qxf7+ Kh8;  46.Qe8+ Kg7;  47.Rf7+ Kg6;  48.Rf8+ Kg7; 49.Qf7#. 

   (Analysis Diagram.)  Black has been mated. The lesson of this variation?  ALWAYS guard your King!!  (my-bg_2_d-14.jpg, 16 KB)    
(Analysis diagram.)

   Check-Mate!!  A tremendous turn-around!! 

   The really sneaky thing was Moshe hardly paused to think in setting this trap! ].  


43. Qd8+ Kg744. Rb1 Rxg4; "-/+"   45. Qd4+??,  
A time-pressure mistake. White had just a few seconds left on the clock. 
(His flag was literally hanging by a thread.) 

  [ Also losing was: 45.Rg1?? Rh4#; 

    The only move was: 45.Qd2,  but Black wins with: 45...Rh4+;  46.Kg1 Qh2+; 
    47.Kf2 Rf4+;  48.Ke2,   (Also decisive for Black is: 48.Ke3 Qg3+49.Ke2 Rf2+ 
      50.Ke1 Rxd2+; 51.Kxd2 Qxg2+;  when Black has an overwhelming material  
      advantage. "-/+" )    48...Qxg2+;  49.Kd1 Rf1+;  50.Kc2 Qxd2+;  
    51.Kxd2 Rxb1; "-/+"  and White could resign with a clear conscience. ].   



White Resigns.  0 - 1.  

One of my prettiest games for defense. 

Moshe Khatena was/is VERY highly rated on ICC
( I.C.C. = "The Internet Chess Club." ) 

    The Internet Chess Club is the place to be, at least for the big boys!  (my-bg_1.gif, 24 KB)    
     Go to "Chess-Club <dot> com" and play chess.  (my-bg_2.gif, 02 KB)     

Information about  __________:   {Taken off the Internet, 01/20/02}
(Last disconnected Thursday, Dec. 06, 2001 22:25): 







Bullet  -  2242  


 17,397   1,563      35, 721 (!!)   2578
Blitz  -   2562    7,550   8,880   1,110     17, 540 2682

 (Best rating ever in Bullet chess) - 2578   (27-Jan-2001)  
 (Best rating ever in Blitz chess)  -  2682   (16-Oct-2000)  


Copyright, (c) A.J. Goldsby I.  
Copyright () A.J. Goldsby, 2000-2002, &  2003.  

  0 - 1 

(This game was originally posted in mid-2001, but I did not complete the full, annotated 
version of this game until probably January, 2002.)


  Copyright (c) {LM} A.J. Goldsby I 

  Copyright (c) A.J. Goldsby, 1995-2008. 
  Copyright A.J. Goldsby, 2009.  All rights reserved.  

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