Games from the Week of 6/8

Jun 14, 2014, 9:21 AM |

Both of my games this week were very interesting, and since they are the last slow games I'll be playing for a week or two, I thought I'd share them. As always, comments and analysis are appreciated.

My first game, I had the black pieces in a Smith-Morra. I tried to play the Chicago Defense, and though I was not successful in doing so, I got an extra tempo which was enough to castle and get my house in order. I played solid, albeit tense defense, and was able to hang onto my extra pawn and keep the white troops at bay until my opponent blundered.

My next game was a disappointing loss; I missed the move that would have almost assured me the win. I had the white pieces in a Falkbeer Countergambit, with black taking with the queen on d5. I got a big lead in development and managed to untie myself, but then I chose to pursue the plan of pushing my queenside majority instead of going for the kill. Passive play led to an endgame where I was slightly worse, and then poor use of my knight led me to sacrifice a pawn to stay alive. I thought I had stumbled across an amazing win, but I missed the only defense, and resigned immediately. It was a good game, but as was the case with Thursday's game, I could stand to be a bit more aggressive, or at least look for more aggressive possibilities.

My evaluation skills need work; if I had done a better job in that second game, I would have found the more active continuations and also tried to buckle down for a draw when the position became more equal. Still, it was a good game and I was pretty happy with the way I played. I'm also really happy about my Morra defense, though I am very much not a fan of facing it, so maybe I need to get my king pawn openings or my French Defense back up to snuff...