Lost on the 6th move

February 6, 2010

That’s what happened to me a week ago. I have played the same opponent 4 times before, but each time with black(here, here, here, and here). I was feeling optimistic that I would do well with white but fell for an opening trap, as you would have guessed, on the 6th move. I played on for a while longer, hoping for a blunder in return, but my opponent played solidly (as you would expect) and it was soon time to end the misery. Replay the game here.

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nxe5 Nc6?! 4. Nxc6 dxc6 5. e5
Now I knew my opponent played the very rare 3rd move, sacrificing a pawn for insufficient compensation. I had played this in a few friendly, rapid games before and always went for the “safe” approach with 5. d3 and tried to take the steam out of his counter-play in the opening. For this game, I decided to go for the move that Fritz advised!
5… Ne4?!
And of course he plays the one move that Fritz never even considered, and I didn’t take a look at this.
6. d3??
I only looked at 6…Nxf2 as his main sacrificing alternative and considered it ok. I completely missed his next move. 6. d4! and white holds a significant advantage.
6… Bc5!
I looked long and hard at 7. Be3 Bxe3 8. fxe3 Qh4+ 9. g3 Nxg3. It was a choice between 2 bad variations and I chose the one that I thought might lead to positions where I could try and swindle him. Alas, no such thing happened and he wrapped up the point efficiently.
7. Qf3 Nxf2 8. b4 Bb6 9. c3 Nxh1 10. g3 Nf2 11. d4 Ng4 12. Bc4 Qe7 13. h3 Nxe5 14. dxe5 Qxe5+ 15. Be2 Be6 16. Bf4 Qf6 17. Qe4 Qf5 18. Nd2 O-O-O 19. Qg2 Qxh3 20. Qxh3 Bxh3 21. Kd1 Rhe8 22. Bf3 Bf5 23. Kc1 Be3 0-1

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