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Amateur Analysis – Unrated vs. Surber

Chess fever in my house seems to wax and wane with the phases of the Moon. Recently, a beautiful chess player and I set down to test our wits against each other across the board. She played White and I was Black. The game began relatively well for her, but a series of blunders on both sides ultimately brought victory to my favor. Check out my amateur analysis and commentary (with assistance from Fritz 14) below:

[Event “Friendly”] [Site “?”] [Date “2014.07.06”] [Round “?”] [White “Unrated”] [Black “Wesley Surber”] [Result “0-1”] [ECO “D00”] [Annotator “Wesley Surber / Deep Fritz 14”] [PlyCount “82”] 1. d4 Nc6 2. Nc3 d5 {last book move} 3. Qd3 $15 Nf6 4. Nf3 g6 5. h3 Bf5 6. Qb5 {Up until this point, the game was basically even. However, after White brought her Queen to b5, I found myself struggling to maintain control of the board and of my own tactics and strategy.} a6 7. Qxb7 Ng4 $2 $18 {[%tqu “”,””, “”,Nxd5,””,10]} 8. Qxc6+ Bd7 9. Qxd5 e6 10. Qe4 f5 11. Qf4 Bd6 12. Qd2 {I was finally able to push White’s Queen back into its own territory and relieve some of the bleeding. At this point in the game, Fritz shows my opponent up by 5.64!} Rb8 $2 $18 {Fritz believes that 12…Nf6 was a better move, but I was hesitant to make it for fear of White’s Queen returning to the h-file and wreaking more havoc.} 13. Qh6 $2 $19 {This move absolutely surprised and perplexed me. It is an obvious blunder on White’s part and was made somewhat quickly. I took immediate advantage of the mistake and captured with 13… Nxh6.} Nxh6 14. e3 $19 Ng4 $2 $19 ({A better option would have been:} 14… a5 15. Bc4 Nf7 16. e4 Bc6 17. Bxe6) 15. Ng5 $4 $19 {Second, and perhaps the most damaging blunder of the game. White fails to capture the Knight on g4 and chooses instead to return her Knight to g5.} Qf6 $2 $19 16. Bxa6 $2 $19 {Fails to move White’s g5 Knight to safety.} h6 $2 $19 {Fritz suggests that I should have captured the pawn on f2, but looking back on this game makes me wish I would have been greedy and played 16…Qxg5.} 17. Nf3 {White finally managed to move the g5 Knight to safety.} g5 $17 18. h4 $4 $19 c5 19. a4 cxd4 20. Nb5 $2 $19 {White would have been in a much better position if she had taken the pawn on d4, which adds pressure to the c6, e6 squares.} Bb4+ 21. Nd2 $2 $19 Qd8 $2 $19 22. Nd6+ $2 $19 {Another unfortunate move on White’s part. Easy response is 22…Bxd6.} Bxd6 23. a5 Nh2 $2 $19 24. g3 Ng4 25. exd4 Ra8 26. Bd3 Rxa5 27. Rb1 e5 28. Nb3 Bb4+ 29. c3 Bd6 30. Nxa5 Qxa5 31. b4 $2 $19 {In this instance, White misses a critical opportunity to move her King to safety by 31. O-O, instead wasting a pawn advance to b4.} Qd5 32. O-O Qf3 33. b5 Qxd3 34. Ra1 Qxb5 $2 $19 35. Ra8+ Bb8 36. Ba3 $2 $19 {White realizes that her Rook is in trouble, but misses the chance to advance the c-pawn and take the Queen off of her perch.} ({Better was:} 36. c4 Qb7 37. Ra2 exd4 38. Rb2) 36… Bc6 37. Rxb8+ $2 $19 {White’s death knell.} Qxb8 38. f3 $2 Qb5 39. Rc1 Qd5 40. c4 Qxf3 41. dxe5 Qg2# 0-1