Shakmaty Bereolos - The Official Chess Site of Peter Bereolos

White: FM Peter Bereolos
Black: GM Nick de Firmian
Kings Island Open, 2005
Round 1, Board 14

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 against 3.Nf3 or 3.g3, de Firmian often plays the Benoni. Like alot of players, he avoids it after 3.Nc3 because of dangerous options like the Modern Main Line and the Taimanov. 4.Nf3 b6 5.Bg5 h6 6.Bh4 Bb7 7.Nd2 Bxc3 8.bxc3 g5 9.Bg3 d6 10.f3 Nbd7 11.e4 Qe7 12.Bd3 I was not aware of the game Agrest-De Firmian Malmo/Copenhagen 2004, which continued 12.Qa4 c5 13.Nb3 e5 14.dxc5 dxc5 15.0-0-0 0-0-0 16.Rd2 Kb8 17.Na1 Nh5 18.Be1 Bc8 1/2:1/2 12...Nh5 13.Bf2 f5 14.g3 Ng7 15.0-0 f4

16.Qe2 Afterwards he suggested 16.e5 dxe5 17.Bg6+ Kd8 18.Re1 with an unclear game. Modern engines frown at my suggestion from then of repostioning the bishop with 16.Re1 e5 17.Bf1 fxg3 18.hxg3 0-0-0 19.Bh3 giving Black a huge advantage after 19...h5 16...e5 17.c5!? A typical sacrifice in this structure, trying to open lines for the bishops, but perhaps it would work better by provoking ...a5 first to weaken Black's queenside structure 17.a4 a5 18.c5 17...dxc5 18.Nb3 If the engine suggestion of 18.d5 is the best White has here, the I think White's whole concept is wrong. 18...cxd4 19.cxd4 exd4

20.Nxd4 The engines much prefer 20.Bxd4 Capturing with the knight seems perfectly natural, otherwise, what is it doing on b3, being dominated by the pawn on b6? I think the counter arguement is that the bishop on f2 is much better placed on the long diagonal where it can fight against Black's Ne5, which becomes a monster in the game. 20...Ne5 21.Bb5+ c6 22.Ba4 0-0 23.Bb3+ Kh7 24.gxf4 gxf4 25.Kh1 c5 26.Rg1 There is really no compensation for this sacrifice, but 26.Nb5 Nxf3 is also hopeless 26...cxd4 27.Bxd4 Rad8 28.Bb2 Nf5 White can resign in good conscience here, but Black had less than 10 minutes in a sudden death time control, so the game continued a few more moves. 29.Bxe5 Qxe5 30.Qg2 Ne7 31.Rac1 Rc8 32.Rcd1 Rfd8 33.Qh3 Rxd1 34.Rxd1 Rc3 35.Rd7 Bxe4 36.Qe6 Bxf3+ 37.Kg1 Qg5+ 0-1