Never Give Up!

Never lose hope, its that easy! I played a G/15 game on ICC this evening, and was incredibly surprised when my opponent suddenly resigned after 11 moves:

leika (me) – rookiehm

1. c4 e5 2. g3 Bc5 3. Bg2 Nf6 4. Nc3 c6 5. d3 d5 6. cxd5 cxd5 7. Nf3

7..e4 This is the wrong plan. A simple 7… Nc6 would have been much better. e5–e4 hyperextends without any backing from Black’s pieces.

8. dxe4

8…d4?! I don’t think this is a good move for black. Black is opening the position and not developing or keeping his king safe.

9. e5 Ng4 10. Ne4 O-O 11. Nxc5 1-0

See the problem here? Black spent about 10 seconds and resigned, then messaged “gg” (good game) before leaving the board.

If you look closely, Black has a fairly well–known resource here, 11…Qa5+ this move wins the knight from c5. Here I have to play 12. Qd2 (12. Bd2? is bad because after 12… Qxc5, my pawn on e5 is a sitting duck) 12… Qxc5 13. Qxd4 Qxd4 14. Nxd4 Nxe5 I am slightly better here because of development, but I think had black seen this line, he would have played on.

What can we take away from this game?

1) When in doubt, look for the forcing moves: checks, captures, and threats. It took me a couple seconds to find …Qa5+ before I played Nxc5, and I think my opponent could have too.

2) Make your opponent play out any combination. Make your opponent prove to you that they know how to win the game. This puts a lot of pressure on your opponent to find the right moves, but also, he/she may not see everything that you see either!

3) At least take a full minute to assess the position before you resign. Don’t let yourself later regret not seeing a winning or equalizing move. Also, if you are going to put time into playing chess, you shouldn’t give up so easily.

 

Feel like I missed something? Feel free to comment below!

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