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White: GM Sergey Kudrin

Black: Peter Bereolos

Vulcan Materials Co. Fun Fest Open, 2000

Round 5 Board 1

1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 3.Nc3 c6 4.Nf3 d6 5.Be3 Nf6?!

Transposing to a bad variation of the Pirc. I should have known better since I achieved a bad position out of the opening with this move against Neal Harris late in 1999. Better, and more in keeping with the spirit of the Modern Defense is 5...Nd7


After this move my database reports a huge winning percentage for White.


Against Harris I played 6...Ng4 I survived a difficult position to win. That move is probably better than the text, which is a classic example of "castling into it."

7.Bh6 b5 8.Bd3 Nbd7 9.e5 Ne8 10.h4

This seems to be the first new move. In the game Gallagher-Strowsky France 1993 White played the immediate 10.Bxg7 which is also good.

10...dxe5 11.Bxg7 Nxg7 12.Qh6

After this move I realized things weren't too rosy and had a long think.


It looked fatal to allow Ng5. For example, [12... exd4 13.Ng5 Nf6 14.Nce4 Ngh5 (14... Nge8 15.h5+-) 15.Be2+-] . Now if White tries to continue with 13.h5 Nf5 14.Bxf5 gxf5 shuts some lines towards the King.


Preventing ...Nf5, but I was much more worried about Ng5 anyway [13.Ng5 fxg5 14.hxg5 and it is hard to find a good defense 14...Rf5 (14... Kf7 15.Qxh7 Rg8 16.Qxg6+ Kf8 17.Rh3) 15.g4]

13...Rf7 14.h5 Ne6

This was the only hope I found. The Black kingside is destroyed, but he staves off immediate mate and the White pawn clogs up the attacking lanes.

15.hxg6 Rg7 16.dxe5 Nxe5 17.Nxe5 fxe5 18.0-0-0 Qf8 19.Bf5

White had been delaying capturing on h7 since Black really didn’t have the option to take on g6, but now he should have thrown in the capture [19.gxh7+ Kh8 20.Bf5]

19...hxg6 20.Bxg6 Qf4+ 21.Qxf4 exf4 22.Bf5 Kf7 23.Rh6 a6

I've survived the worst of the attack, but my position is still a bit difficult. To further complicate matters, I was down to only 4 minutes plus a 5 second delay.

24.Ne2 f3 25.Ng3 Nf4 26.Rd8 Bb7 27.Rxa8 Bxa8 28.Rh8 Rg8 29.Rxg8 Kxg8 30.Kd2

[30.Be4 Nh3 31.Nh1 Ng5]

30...c5 31.Be4 Bd5!

Much better than 31...Bxe4 32.Nxe4 and Black's position is difficult.

32.Ke3 Ng2+ 33.Kxf3 Ne1+ 34.Kf4 Bxe4 35.Nxe4 Nxc2 36.Nxc5 a5 37.Ke5 Kf7 38.f4

After this move, the draw is fairly straightforward. White should have tried to find a way to keep Black’s knight coralled.

38...Ne3 39.g5 Nc4+ 40.Kd5 Nxb2 41.Kc6 b4 42.Kb5 Nd1 43.Kxa5 Nc3 44.Nd3 Nxa2 45.Nxb4 Nc3 46.Nd3 Kg6 47.Kb4 Nd5+ 48.Kc5 Nxf4 49.Nxf4+ Kxg5 1/2:1/2