Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Match versus Alexis Paredes

Two weeks ago, I played a 3-game match versus Alexis Paredes [pictured above], at the Marshall Chess Club. Portions of the games were filmed by Katie Dellamaggiore, who also interviewed me and Alexis. In attendance was Alexis's chess teacher Elizabeth Vicary.

My performance in the upcoming Chess Movie has been rated PG (poor games), as I lost all three contests. What impressed me most about Alexis were his poise and his presence at the board, especially in such a young man. He played like a grown-up!

Here is the critical position from game one, after move 30, with Alexis as White to move.

Alexis uncorked 31.Rc8!, winning in all variations.

a) Obviously 31...Qxc8 32.Qxf7 Qc1+ 33.Kh2 loses immediately.

b) Less obvious is what might have happened on a waiting move. For instance, 31...a6 32.Qxg7+! Rxg7 33.Rxf8+ Kh7 (33...Rg8 34.Rxg8+ Kxg8 35.Nf6+ followed by 36.Nxd7) 34.Nf6+ Kg6 35.Nxd7 Rxd7 36.Rf6+ followed by 37.Rxe6.

c) In the game, I played 31...Rf5 32.g4 Rf3 33.Kg2 Qf7, hoping for 34.Qxf7 Rxf7. Instead, Alexis smashed me with 34.Qxg7+! Qxg7 35.Nxg7.