Sunday, February 19, 2012

"The Kenilworthians" at the World Amateur Team

Kolker - Goeller.  Black to play and win.
The World Amateur Team chess championship is living up to its billing, with 294 teams (a new record) and almost 1300 players.  On day one, my team "The Kenilworthians" (what else?) won one and lost one.  But in the match we lost, I had a rare moment of brilliance, finding a truly "invisible chess move" to win against a life master (see diagram above).  Today we played the team of fellow chess-blogger Polly "Castling Queenside" Wright and I won a wild Urusov Gambit (that I will have to post on my return).  Every time I play in a tournament, I vow it will be my last, because I just have so little time for such chess immersion.  But then I play one fun game and my whole mood changes.  We'll see how I feel at the end of the weekend.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Be1!! wins a rook for several pawns, at least.

oddodddodo said...

Michael, What a fantastic winning move! I think that may be the most original winner that I've ever seen, short of a grandmaster game. It looks like a composition.

Was the combination planned in advance, or did the position just sort of happen?

Dana

Michael Goeller said...

Thanks, Dana. I will post the game itself soon -- definitely one of the most exciting I've ever played -- including an ending with Rook vs. four pawns. But I was embarrassed to look at it with the computer and see how many mistakes we both made, and how many things we overlooked. An FM playing board one immediately criticized his teammate after the game (which ended at 2 am, by the way) and told him a couple ways he could have won. He must have missed about a dozen winning moves before I got my chance with this one! Funny how it came to me right away -- mostly because I was thinking about how I could possibly block his Rook from getting to h1 where it can trap my Queen -- and where, if I could block the Rook, I'd be able to play Qh1#. So it was easy to see as a candidate. I had also played two other weird Bishop moves in the course of the game and was already thinking about blogging the game under the title "Invisible Bishop Moves." So I sort of wanted to play another weird bishop move if I could. :-) Once you see ...Be1!! and start calculating it, it isn't that hard. I think it is just seeing it because it looks so weird. In fact, when I played it my opponent made a lot of quizzical looks, as did almost everyone else who walked by the board. Eventually, though, he saw that after Be1 he has to play Rdxe1 when e4+! dxe4 Rb3+ forces him to give up a Rook at e3. And that is the only option that avoids mate for him.

Michael Goeller said...

Oh -- but as for whether I saw the move in advance: sort of. It was already an option in my mind. The game was very messy, though, as he had at least a perpetual check (and, as it turned out, a win as well) before we reached this position. And I had thought I had other options here (including Bc3 or e4+) going into this line, so I had not thought of Be1 yet as a winner. It was only when I reached this position that I realized it was just the best move. And after I played it, he thought for 20 minutes, which gave me time to recognize that it was definitely the best option.

Anonymous said...

:-o Wow, huge congrats. Indeed that is a brilliancy!!

Ian said...

And there you were thinking of giving up chess. What a shame that would be! I can only imagine onlookers showered your board with golden coins in the style of the old masters.