Game no.9 for the Second Team - 1.b3! Destroys Again! :)

Today I played my very first game for my club up on board 2 - I even had the chance of a swap to board 1! But as I saw who my opponent would be, and despite having the black pieces that I like playing with, I declined my team-mates' offer and stayed on board 2 because I beat their board 1 last season and didn't really see it as a new challenge... I also wanted to prove myself on board 2 first.

But our board 1 lost in just 19 moves - kinda makes me wish I would have swapped-up to board 1 but I have had it in my head for days that I was gonna be playing with white and decided not to change my fate, and just as I thought I would, I didn't decide on my opening move until my clock had been started and I went with what my heart was saying and that was to thrash-out a Nimzo-Larsen attack!

Despite the name of the opening I played a quiet positional line but one that had good long-term strategic chances. I've played this line on the computer but never otb so it was a whole new game for me to try - at the end of the game I had about 16 minutes left whilst my opponent still had about 40 minutes, so I think I used my time wisely in the critical moments.

The game looks very drawish until I decline the draw offer and get brave (see a winning tactic Wink), I was literally just about to shake his hand and accept the draw but my hand went on the board and played on instead of the handshake Laughing My opponent made it very hard for me to make any progress for most of the game and it could have easily been a draw... but I could have also lost my queen in the endgame - here it is...



So a definitive win when he resigned I thought he'd play on to checkmate but he didn't. I had to be so careful not to get caught by perpetual checks like I have in the past and threw away winning positions into draws like I have done before... I also had to make the correct captures so I didn't lose my queen (see the last variation where I had actually calculated wrongly otb!)

So overall very happy, yet another win against a higher-rated player they just keep on coming lol Wink My opponenet was graded 134 ECF (1722 FIDE equ.) in the last gradings and has been as high as 138 ECF (1754) so he is an experienced player and was a challenge to beat! Cool


  • 4 years ago


    Thanks scorpion42 glad you liked the game Smile

  • 4 years ago


    Well played,Enjoyed the game

  • 4 years ago


    @Mack 25 - thanks for the comment! I am trying hard to improve and play the toughest opponents possible so I get better experience and when I lose games whoever beats me picks the holes in my game and then I can set about fixing them Smile  You're 6 months in... my first grade was 'e110' - that was after just 6 rated games though, it will be good to see some of your games if you ever fancy posting them up in a blog. Good luck on your own personal journey of improvement!

    @bigboyrg2012 - thanks for saying that my play was very solid that means a lot considering you beat me in our otb clash! Cool I never knew Fischer played 1.b3 with success, I never knew he played it at all actually I haven't seen any of his games in my "1.b3" book... might have to check every single game and maybe find one! Yeah go for it - play the Nimzo-Larsen with the 4.Bb5 line and as you said you're a Nimzo player and with white you have that extra tempo so great winning chances! I'd love to see the game if you post it up Smile

    @learningthemoves - thanks for the nice comment, when I post my games up in blogs I never use computer analysis because that would take away my true thoughts and experience from the game before I posted it and then it wouldn't be "my" blog it would technically be Houdini's and anyone can run games through an engine - I was told by a very strong player (an IM) to self-analyze and then check the accuracy after if you wish with a computer, this helps improve analysis skills much quicker and really helps with calculations otb as Houdini can't tell you the "best" move during your game Wink Others might have different opinions but I'm not going to stray from this formula simply because I really like to analyze my own games and put my genuine thoughts etc in on certain moves or critical moments. I also explain some things quite a lot because my family (who don't play much chess) read my blogs and I want them to understand what I'm saying, even if they don't "really" understand if that makes sense...

    I appreciate you saying that the blog is motivating - apart from my blogs/games being a personal memo that I can look back on in the future it's nice to hear you think it's motivating! If my self-analyzed games and blogs can entertain and help motivate others that's great! Thanks a lot! Cool

  • 4 years ago


    Well done! Enjoyed the annotated walk-through too. Motivating.

  • 4 years ago


    Nice one PUTV, very solid play and always in control even when you were 'dead level' you'll be 160-170 before you know it. B3 rules - lol. Fischer used it to good effect many years ago and demolished 3 players in one season indeed I might use it myself tonight, I play the Nimzo Indian as black so why not play this as white with that little extra tempo. It is a long time since I varied from e4,d4,Nf3 and g3 opening repertoire. Keep up the good work.

  • 4 years ago


    Nice game, I am also i am taking heart that you made some real progress in 18months of otb chess. I am 6 months in and currently ungraded, probably come out around 100-110 ecf. Like you touched on, still missing perpetual checks and closing won games out. 

    Onwards and upwards! 

  • 4 years ago


    Well it wasn't the hardest game I've ever played lol but he made me think and use a lot of time calculating at the critical moments, it could have gone the other way if my calculations and gut instinct were wrong! But yeah thanks!! Smile

  • 4 years ago


    Great playing.You made it look easy

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