Tuesday, November 24, 2009

My game against FM Ooi Chern Ee

Last week I faced a very strong player rated at 2357 which is far ahead of mine (only 1995 elo rating), and as expected, I had succumbed in his hand, but not without reasonable chances to inflict the damage on him.

White: Rizal A Kamal (1995)
Black: FM Ooi Chern Ee (2357)

1. e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nc6
This was exactly as I had predicted before the game. Here I played my prepared move..

..which channels the game into the Richter Rautzer attack, instead of my normal favourite 6.Bc4. I decided to give this a try here as my 6.Bc4 had failed to survive against a number of my opponents lately.

6..e6 7.Qd2 a6
I also had not really anticipated 7..Qb6 as I had sneaked into the database to find that, my opponent had been prefering the text move.

9.0-0-0 h6 10.Be3 Qc7
I was hoping that my opponent would go for 10...Nxd4 variation. Now I was worried about the possibility of ..Ng4 and also in dilemma between pushing the f-pawn a step or 2 steps. In the end I just decided to be agressive rather than solid, hence selecting my next move

Of course 11.f3 is a solid choice. When I refer to the John Nunn's Beating The Sicilian2 (BTS2) he described this as "f4 against everything".

11.. Na5?!
After this, my mind quickly recalled (vaguely) a game between John Nunn and Sokolov but I could not recall the correct plan over the board to combat this.

A weak move. More natural is simply 12.Kb1 so that the Bishop on f1 can snatch anything that lands on c4 with a tempo. 12...Ng4 need not to be feared as I shall always have the option to retreat 13.Bg1. Another option is to go for 12.e5!? dxe5 (12...Ng4 13.exd6 Nxe3 14.dxc7 Nxd1 is not really clear in my opinion) 13.fxe5 Qxe5 14.Bf4 Qc5 and now 14.Ndb5 is possible as 14...Qxf2 15.Nc7+ Ke7 16.Bd6+ Kd7 17.Bg3+ Kc8 18.Bxf2 Kxc7

consistent with his last move, my opponent really threatening my Queenside now, and the threats of ..b4 or Bb4 really annoyed me.

13.e5!? dxe5 14.fxe5 Nd7
Black did not want to take any risk. Actually, 14..Qxe5 may be playable but practically speaking, it exposes, black armies into difficulties after 15.Bf4 Qc5 16.Ndxb5

At least, I can be very proud of this move. At least, it justified the lemon made earlier (12.h3)

Obviously, my opponent's intention is to castle on the next move. Here, I sank into a deep thought and at the end decided to sacrifice a piece, just to prevent castling

I was not sure the soundnest of this sac, but I decided to give it a try as I did not see any better continuation. If 16.Ne4 simply 16..0-0 (if 16..Nxe5 17.Bxb5+ axb5 18.Nxb5 Qb8 19.Ned6+ Bxd6 20.Nxd6+ Kd7 21.

My opponent took the sacrifice after a long thinking

16...exf5 17.Nxd5 Qb7!?
I had only considered 17...Qc6

Otherwise 18..Bg5+

18...Kxe7 19.Qh4+ Ke8
Of course not 19..Kf8 20.Qd8# a snap mate. 19...g5 is of course answered by 20.Bxg5+ hxg5 21.Qxh8+ Ke7 and white has a very strong attacking innitiative.

20.e6!? was considered by me, but in the end, I decided the text move as I thought that developing another piece should not harm me. I totally forgot that, in sharp position it is the attacking tempo that counts. After 20.e6 however:
a) 20...fxe6 21.Be2 Nf6 (21...Qe4 22.Bh5+ Kf8 23.Qd8 mate)22.Bh5+ Nxh5 (22.. g6 23.Qxf6) 23.Rd8+ Kf7 24.Rxh8 wins

b) 20...Nf6! (20..Nc5?? 21.Rd8 mate) 21.Bg5 hxg5 22.Qxh8+ Ke7 23.Qd8+ Kxe6 24.Rhf1 (24.. Bd7 25.Qxa5)Nc6 25.Rd6 mate

This was what I had not considered

21.Qf2 Nc4 22.Bd4 Bb7 23.e6 Qxe6 24.Bxc4?
Here I should try 24.Bxg7 despite that 24...Rg8 25.Bc3, black is totally winning. The rest were just a futile attempt to hang on. I resigned eventually.

Some good references about this opening system are:-

1. Beating The Sicilian 3 - John Nunn & Joe Gallagher
2. Beating The Sicilian 2 - John Nunn
3. From Opening Into Endgame - Edmar mednis
4. The Complete Richter Rautzer (BATSFORD) - Peter Wells & Viacheslav Osnos

Friday, November 13, 2009


I participated in the recent UIA Open 2009. The quality of my games was not up to the best, nevertheless, I did produced some sparkling victories. Despite losing to the FM Nicholas Chan, I had played well, but only failed to deliver the final punch during the critical point. Before that, this was my best game in that tournament:-

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e6 6.g4
This is known as The Keres attack. After the game, my opponent informed me that he had not known this.

6...e5 7.Nf5?!
At home, after consulting GM John Nunn's recipe in BTS3, I discovered that 7.Bb5+ is correct
7...g6 8.g5
Onced, I used to retreat 8.Ne3? and eventually lost. This defeat cost me the title of Kolej Islam Champion (Double round robin rematch) which I had won the first series 7 round swiss earlier.

8...gxf5 9.exf5?! Bxf5
After the game, my opponent claimed that he believe, if he could defend, than he could keep the extra piece safely. He may be right, but it is difficult in practise to realise such ambition.

10.Qf3 Qd7 11.gxf6
Here, I regained the extra piece with innitiative

11... Nc612.Be3 h5
setting a trap if I proceeded with 13.0-0-0 Bg4! wins the exchange.

13.h3 Bxc2!?
My opponent took the bait.

14.Rc1 Bf5 15.Bb5 a6 16.Ba4 Be6 17.Bb6!
This keep black's armies bottled in further.

18.Nd5 Bxd5 19.Qxd5 Qe6

It is difficult to imagine such a move, which is a natural attempt to ease the pressuse by offering Queens trade was a decisive blunder.


After this, there is no defence.


The main line 20...Qxd5 loses to 21.Rxc8 double checks and mate!

Double check and mate 1-0
Good references for this opening system:-
1. Beating The Sicilian 2 and 3 - John Nunn
2. Sicilian e6 and d6 / Sicilian Scheveningen - Kasparov & Nikitin


Sifu aka Mr Abd Latif Mohamad is fully recovered and ready to be in action in this coming Saturday and Saturday event, involving the para chess players at Malacca. For details, please refer to his blog here http://sifumycatur.blogspot.com/