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Southpaw Jim
02-02-2007, 11:30 AM
Why, in this position:

Belotti v Piket

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f3 O-O 6.Be3 c5 7.Nge2 Nc6 8.d5 Ne5 9.Ng3 e6 10.Be2 exd5 11.cxd5 a6 12.a4 Bd7 13.O-O b5 14.axb5 axb5 15.Rxa8 Qxa8 16.Bxb5 Bxb5 17.Nxb5 Qa6 18.Na3 Rb8 19.Qc2 Nxd5 20.exd5 Rxb2 21.Qxb2 Nxf3+ 22.Rxf3 Bxb2 23.Nc2 Qd3 24.Rf2 Qxd5 25.Bh6 Be5 26.Nf1 f5 27.g4 f4 28.Bxf4 Bxf4 29.Rxf4 Qe6 30.h3 d5 31.g5 d4 32.Rf2 c4 33.Rf4 d3 34.Nd4 Qe5

Rather than allow black's combo in moves 19-24 which nets queen and 3 pawns for rook and 2 knights, white doesn't play 21.Qd1? If 21...Qxa3, then 22.Bc1?

This game was listed in a book by GM Gallagher on the KID as the only example of play following white's refusal to accept the 6...c5 gambit, and Gallagher noted that unless white plays 21.Qxb2, the knight on a3 will fall. A friend suggested the Qd1 move and I can't see any way around it, since I don't have access to a chess engine at the moment. I wouldn't have thought Gallagher would cite this game as his one example of this line if 21.Qxb2 is a blunder? (certainly without at least putting a ?/?? after the move)

Thoughts? :doh:

Southpaw Jim
02-02-2007, 01:17 PM
Upon further consideration, it seems that there is no "answer" to 21.Qd1, but white gets lumped with a rather cramped position. Presumably IM Belotti felt that a free position was worth the material loss..

Aaron Guthrie
02-02-2007, 01:44 PM
21.Qd1 Qxa3 22.Bc1 Nc4 23.Bxb2 Qxb2 with Bd4+ and Ne3 to follow, initiative to Black.
21.Nc4!! ++--

Kevin Bonham
02-02-2007, 06:16 PM
21.Qd1 Qxa3 22.Bc1 Nc4 23.Bxb2 Qxb2 with Bd4+ and Ne3 to follow, initiative to Black.

Yes I think Black is better here but only with careful play. For instance if 24.Re1 Bd4+ 25.Kh1 Ne3 26.Qe2, 26...Qxe2 will not get Black anywhere, but 26...Qb4 is trickier.

Aaron Guthrie
02-02-2007, 07:31 PM
But why 26...Qxe2? If a queen exchange is to be considered, allowing white to trade on b2 seems to make more sense so that then the Black bishop would be in a position to support the c pawn. Also the d pawn is on, so 26...Nxd5 would be the move. I don't think this would be good enough though, so no Queen swap.

Kevin Bonham
02-02-2007, 11:45 PM
But why 26...Qxe2? If a queen exchange is to be considered, allowing white to trade on b2 seems to make more sense so that then the Black bishop would be in a position to support the c pawn. Also the d pawn is on, so 26...Nxd5 would be the move. I don't think this would be good enough though, so no Queen swap.

Agreed, hence my suggestion of 26...Qb4 instead. But I'm now not sure that actually does anything either, eg 27.Ne4 c4 28.Rc1 and probably Black is running out of puff.

I doubt Black actually has any more than equality.

I think Eurotrash's friend is correct that 21.Qd1 is better.

Aaron Guthrie
03-02-2007, 10:12 PM
21.Nc4!! ++-- Hm, I thought the queen was on a5.


Agreed, hence my suggestion of 26...Qb4 instead. But I'm now not sure that actually does anything either, eg 27.Ne4 c4 28.Rc1 and probably Black is running out of puff.

I doubt Black actually has any more than equality.

I think Eurotrash's friend is correct that 21.Qd1 is better.

Agreed, now that I am looking at the right position. I had been comparing 21.Qd1 to 21.Qxb2 with the Queen on a5. With the Queen on a5 21.Qxb2 doesn't look too bad. I had no idea why white played Nc2 next instead of Nc4. Also I had been considering this as a practical matter. Qd1 vs Qxb2 as a matter of which gives White the most winning chances, regardless of the added losing chances. With the Queen on a6 losing the d pawn looks forced, and so it does look too hopeful to say that 21.Qxb2 could offer any realistic winning chances.