I wish to report here the moves of a game of chess I played on the Internet Chess Club a moment ago, against a similarly rated opponent. This was a 5' game -all your moves have to be done in five minutes, or you lose on time. Under such circumstances, games are ridden with mistakes of all kinds, oversights, strategical blunders, howlers. But sometimes, a game which can be shown with pride appears magically out of sudden inspiration. Here is such an instance.

Tonno - datigoneptraskam, ICC 2009

1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.c4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6

We are in a well-known variation of the Panov attack of the Caro-Kann defence. It is a very unbalanced opening, with chances of dynamic play for both sides. These opening moves usually originate interesting positions, and indeed this is the case.

6.cxd5 Bg7 7.Bc4 0-0 8.Nge2 Nbd7 9.Bb3 Nb6

With his sixth move black has conceded the d5 pawn to white. The pawn is not for free: by temporarily parting with it, black hopes to focus his forces on the white center, to later dismantle it and obtain the "initiative" -the ephemeral, but important advantage of having control of the operations.

10.Nf4 Bf5 11. 0-0 Qd7 12.Re1 Rfe8

The position is still "by the book". White will try to consolidate his d5 pawn as much as possible, while developing his pieces actively, placing his rooks on the e-file, and if possibly, attacking the black king's position: especially the f7 pawn is chronically weak.

13.h3 h5 14.Be3 Rad8 15.Qf3 a5 16.a3 a4 17.Ba2 Qd6 18.Rad1 Rc8 19.Bc1!

White prevents the jump to c4 of the black knight, by protecting the b2 pawn and freeing the e-file to his rooks

19. ... Red8 20.Re5! Ne8 21.Rde1!

White offers black a rook for the darksquared bishop. Normally this is a sufficient advantage to win the game, but in exchange for the rook white obtains total control of the center, undoubles his central pawns, and prepares a pawn grab with the trick Nxh5. Black correctly declines the offer.

21... Rd7 22.Nxh5!? gxh5 23.Qxf5

Here white had better take with the rook, pressuring the f7 pawn; however, the move in the game does not spoil his advantage.

23.... Bxe5 24.dxe5 Qg6

Here we understand the power of the unblocked, advanced central pawns. Black is forced to place his queen in a position which already would allow some tactical trick. White here could play Qxg6 fxg6 d6+, and after a king move, Be6 wins back the exchange with advantage. But white prefers to set up another trick, having observed that black is short of time -in such circumstances the queen exchange is not the best choice - white wants to complicate the game further, and now he tries to ruin the coordination of the black pieces with a queen sortie on the queenside.

25. Qf3 Nc7 26.d6 exd6 27.Qxb7?! Ncd5

Objectively, the capture on b7 was not the best option for white, but the position is highly complex to play for black, and in fact he falls in a trap.

28.Qa6 Nxc3 ?


White does not care to regain the knight he just
lost, and instead puts more gasoline on the fire. The black position
now collapses under the threats of the advancing pawn. If fxe6, for
instance, there follows Bxe6+ and a whole rook falls, with further
attack on the other; in the meantime, the c3 knight remains hanging, as
does the b6 one.

29....Nxa2 30.exd7

30... Nxc1

Another mistake in time trouble, but black cannot save himself by Rd8 Re8+

31.dxc8=Q+ Nxc8 32.Qxc8+ Kg7 33.Qxc1

Prosaic. The smoke has cleared, and white is one full rook ahead. Black lost on time in this hopeless position.