Bounce back game vs a Strong Junior Player and learning from my last loss
A big take away from last month’s game for me was in quieter positions with less tactical resources I tend to let my guard down. I think many of us (particularly myself) lose our sense of danger when pieces start coming off the board. I was determined (really hoping) not to blunder this way this month and be more vigilant in looking for tactical resources for both my opponent and myself. I think this mindset actually helped me set up a zwishenzug 33.e5+ in a quiet position in the game that gave me an advantage that perhaps my opponent overlooked for some of the same reasons I did last month.
This month we played the Ashburn Jr team and my opponent was Andy Huang one of the youngest and higher rated players for his age I have ever played. Andy is a very strong 10 year old Junior rated 2128 and this rating puts him in the top 3 in his age group in the United States.
As far as the game went I ended up dropping a pawn at move 8. I missed 9…Bxe4. Perhaps do to my pea size brain or dyslexia. Not sure how to explain missing that ½ move reply but I did. However the position for white after dropping the pawn is Ok. White gets just enough initiative to equalize.
"The main objective of a rook or queen on an open file is the eventual occupation of the 7th or 8th rank" Aron Nimzowitsch.
I think the main takeaway for the game (after the queens come off) is how much a slight initiative and control of an open file can help.
When there is one open file in a middle game or ending with rooks that file is typically primo real estate. Most of us know the simple strategy of, 1 controlling the open file, 2. Stacking, the rooks, 3. Penetrating to 7th or 8th rank (2nd or 1st if black) and how effective that can be. This is Nimzowitsch 101 but hey it really works. This doesn’t give white the win in this game but it at least equalizes the position a pawn down and I think it’s a more difficult game for black to play than white.
Below is an older game with same theme as above. Not perfect game but excellent textbook example of controling the open file and penetrating first rank with rooks.