Burns vs. McDonagh

Burns, J – McDonagh, Alan [E66]
Armstrong – Rathmines B v Elm Mount B
Annotated by John Burns.

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.Nf3 g6 4.Nc3 Bg7 5.g3 0–0 6.Bg2 Nc6 7.d5 Na5 8.Qd3 d6 9.0–0 b6 10.b3N

Position after 10. b3

Played after a lot of thought and not very good. Lots of moves have been tried here, including e4, Bd2, a3 etc [RR 10.Bd2 Ne8 11.e4 e5 12.dxe6 Bxe6 13.b3 h6 14.Rad1 Nc6 15.Be3 Bg4 16.Rc1 Ne5 17.Nxe5 dxe5 18.Qc2 Qc7 19.h3 Be6 20.Nb5 Qe7 21.Rcd1 Nc7 22.Nc3 Na6 23.Qc1 Kh7 24.Nd5 Qb7 Ailama,K-Munukka,T/Finland 2004/EXT 2006/½–½ (47); 
10…Bf5 11.Qe3 [11.e4 isn’t possible now 11…Nxe4 12.Nxe4 Bxa1 13.Bh6 Bg7] 11…a6 [11…Ng4 12.Qd2] 12.Nh4 Bd7 13.Bb2 b5!³ 14.cxb5 axb5 15.Qd2 b4 16.Ne4 Bb5 17.Rfe1

Position after 17. Rfe1

[17.Nxf6+ safer but drawish 17…Bxf6 18.Bxf6 exf6 19.Rfe1 Re8]
17…Ra7 18.Ng5 h6 19.Ngf3

Position after 19. Ngf3

[19.Nxg6!? fxg6 20.Ne6 Qe8 21.Nxf8 Qxf8] 19…Ne4 20.Qc2 Bxb2 21.Qxb2 Nc3 22.e4

Position after 22. e4

[22.Qc2 Nxe2+ 23.Kh1 Nb7 24.Nxg6] 22…Qa8 23.Qd2?! [23.a3 deals with the weak a-pawn 23…Nb7 24.axb4 cxb4 25.Nd4] 23…Kh7 [23…Nxb3? 24.Qxh6 e5 (24…Nxe4 25.Nxg6 fxg6 26.Qxg6+ Kh8 27.Rxe4) 25.Ng5 f6 26.axb3 Ne2+ 27.Kh1 fxg5 28.Qxg6+ Kh8 29.Qh6+ Kg8 30.Ng6 Rxf2 31.Qh8+ Kf7 32.Rxa7+ Qxa7 33.Qh7+ Kf6 34.Qxa7] 24.Rac1 Nb7 25.Rc2? [25.a4 Na5 26.Qc2] 25…Nxa2 [25…Rxa2 26.Rxa2 Qxa2 27.Qxa2 Nxa2 28.Ra1 Ra8–+] 26.e5

Position after 26. e5

Only chance but Black is winning all ends up 26…Nc3 27.exd6 Nxd6 28.Ne5 g5 [28…Ra3 29.Ng4 g5 30.Rxc3 bxc3 31.Qc2+ f5 32.Rxe7+ Rf7 33.Rxf7+ Nxf7 34.Qxf5+] 29.Nhf3 f6 [29…Nde4] 30.Rxc3 [30.Nc6 Ra1 31.Rxc3 bxc3 32.Qxc3 Rxe1+ 33.Qxe1 e5] 30…bxc3 31.Qc2+ f5 32.Qxc3

After Qxc3

-2.56 here, says Fritz 32…Ne4 33.Qe3 Ra1? [33…Qxd5 34.b4 Ra2 35.bxc5 Rc8 36.Nd4 Qxe5 37.Nxf5 Bd7] 34.Nxg5+ not a bad practical try, but White is now -3.2 [34.h4 Rxe1+ 35.Qxe1 gxh4 36.Nxh4 Qxd5 37.Neg6 Rd8 38.Nxf5 Qd1 39.Qxd1 Rxd1+ 40.Kh2 Nxg3 41.Ne3 Re1 42.Nf8+ Kg7 43.Ne6+ Kf6 44.Nxc5 Nf5] 34…hxg5? [34…Nxg5 35.h4 Rxe1+ 36.Qxe1 Nf7 37.Nc6 Bxc6 38.dxc6 e5] 35.Bxe4 Rxe1+ 36.Qxe1 Qc8 ?

Position after 36. Qc8

Throwing away the win. fxe4 was not to be feared [36…fxe4 37.Qxe4+ although with time running out it’s perhaps understandable Black didn’t risk it
37…Kh8(37…Kg7 38.Qg6+ Kh8 39.Qh5+ Kg8 40.Qxg5+ Kh8 41.Ng6+ Kh7 42.Nxf8+ Qxf8 is at least equal) 38.Ng6+ Kg7 39.Qb1 (39.Nxf8 loses 39…Qa1+ 40.Kg2 Bf1+ 41.Kf3 Qd1+ 42.Ke3 Qe2#) 39…Rf7 40.Ne5 Rf5 41.Nc6 Rxd5 42.Nxe7 Rd3–+] 37.Bg2 Qc7 38.f4 g4 39.h3 gxh3 40.Bxh3 Qd6 41.Qd1 Qh6 42.Bg2 Kg7 43.Qc1 draw agreed, and indeed Fritz reckons this is even ½–½

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One Response to Burns vs. McDonagh

  1. John Burns says:

    I should have said that this was a rather lucky escape for White, and only Black’s time trouble towards the end prevented him from taking the full point. All the variations were calculated by Fritz (not my second!)

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