Counterplay & The Initiative - A RALRAL3333 game analysis

Sep 6, 2017, 5:02 PM |
Hello everyone! I have not made a blog post in a long time now, but an idea arose out of a recent daily chess game I played in a tournament, against a player with a much higher rating than me. I was playing black in this game and my opponent was playing white. I fell victim to a couple early tactics and got behind in the game very quickly. I was down a few points, but had a fairly open position against my opponent who had not yet castled. I felt 13. f3 was not a great move by my opponent, and I thought for a while on how to punish it. I settled on a move to open up the center and attack my opponents king, which was 13. Ng3. The sad part was that through all of my thinking, I missed the simple move 16. Bd3, and all hopes of me winning were lost. I ended up resigning shortly after. In this blog, I am doing an analysis of the game and what I could have done after 13. f3. Anyways, the original game is just below.

Surprisingly, after computer analysis I saw that after Nxe4, f3 was best play for white. Anyways, the analysis evaluated this position as -2.09, so even though I was down material, I was winning! So then how did I lose the game? First, I will show you best play from 13. f3:

In the best play, black is able to win the game. This is what I should have done. Although I missed 16. Bd3, my move of 13. Ng3 was not actually a bad move. Here is how I should have played after 13. Ng3:

After 15. Kd2 in the above diagram, I would be up 2.65 points according to the computer, so I was still winning, as you can see after following best play, I would have been able to take my opponents queen for a rook. Now, here was another option I was considering:

Anyways, Through this analysis, I saw that there was so much depth in all of the possibilites that could have been carried out after 13. f3, and the move I chose was not bad at all even though I missed 16. Bd3, but I just did not carry out my attack properly. The problem? I tried to attack too soon, trying to immediately put my opponent in check, because I feared I would lose my attack if I let my opponent chose any of his/her moves after I started my attack. My Rd8 check was easily defended, and then I could not do anything else, while if I had played Re8 instead, it would have been better. Also, as best play was to take the pawn on B2, I overlooked that move completely because it was not putting my opponent in check and to me, it seemed like it was not attacking, and just taking a pawn instead. I did not want just a pawn because I was already down material. From this game, I can learn that I must think more than just a few moves ahead, and I must learn the power of the initiative more. If i had, i would have known that simply checking my opponent here would not have worked. By playing Rd8, I allowwed white to better his position by blocking with the bishop. It was true that I overlooked that move, but putting my rook on the e-file would have gained me the very important access to the e-file. I have also learned to consider all possibilities now, because the best move, Qxd2 was a move that I did not even consider. From analysing this game, I feel happy to have learned from it but also sad that I could not convert this position into a win.


In conclusion, I hope that you have all learned something from this game. I was very curious of what the possibilities were after 13. f3, so I decided that it would be a good idea for all of to see this game, as I had many opportunites to beat a player over 300 ELO points higher than me. This would have been my real best win in daily chess because the best win I currently have is because my opponent timed out on their game. The good thing about analysing this game is that anyone reading can see my mistakes and make better use of the initiative than I did in this game. Thank you all for reading my blog, good luck in your chess everyone!


Also, a special thanks especially goes to @ankitkiran for his encouragement to keep blogging and for reading all my blogs! Thanks!