The 2006 NSW State Championships began last Sunday and already, we have our first surprise. Thirteen-year old Max Illingworth maintains his giant killer status by downing defending champ Andrew Bird in the first round. However, more importantly for us is the comeback of one Greg Canfell.
FIDE master Canfell returns to competitive play after a 7-month self imposed hiatus. We understand that his break was largely due to a heart-breaking loss to GM Murray Chandler in January at the Australian Championships in Brisbane. In a winning position, Canfell fell for a cheapo and lost horribly.
Well, it seems that his break has done his chess a lot of good and he's fully recovered. We hope so anyway. Last Sunday, he faced off against German visitor Rasmus Koelln and won. With special (make that "shirty") permission from Greg Canfell, we republish his annotations to his first round game.
Annotations by FM Greg Canfell
NSW State Ch 2006
1.e4 c5 2.c3 Nf6 3.e5 Nd5 4.d4 cxd4 5.cxd4 e6 6.Bc4 I know this is one of the main lines, but Bxd5 never seems to offer much - so why not put the Bishop on its natural attacking square, d3.
6...d6 7.Nf3 Nc6 8.Bxd5?! exd5 9.0-0 Be7 10.Qb3?! 10.Nc3 10...dxe5 11.Nxe5?! White would certainly like to exchange knights as now 11...Nxe5 12.dxe5 is far preferable to the immediate 11.dxe5 when simply 12...0-0, followed by either Be6 or Bg4 is very pleasant for Black - Qxb7 will always be met by Nb4. But 11.Nxe5 has its own problems
11...Nxd4! 12.Qa4+ Nc6 13.Nc3! The best reaction. After 13.Nxc6 Qd7 - the move Rasmus missed when he embarked upon 10.Qb3 - Black would simply be a pawn up 13...0-0 14.Nxc6 bxc6 15.Qxc6 Be6 Black's advantages are the 2 bishops, an unblockadeable isolani, and a badly offside White Queen, but it's still a very difficult position 16.Rd1 Rc8 17.Qa6
17...d4! It is essential that White not be allowed to play Be3-Bd4 - otherwise he might even be better. 17...Bc5 would transpose to the game after 18.Be3! d4 18.Be3 Bc5 Immediately giving up the queen was another way. 18...dxe3 19.Rxd8 exf2+ 20.Kxf2 Bc5+ 21.Kg3! Rfxd8 and the bishops and rooks look impressive but maybe White simply plays 22.Rd1.
19.Na4 either this or 19.Ne4 was forced 19...dxe3 20.Rxd8 exf2+ 21.Kf1 Rfxd8 22.Nxc5 Rxc5 23.Kxf2 Rc2+ 24.Kg3? or 24.Kg1? Rdd2 25.Qb7 h6 followed by ...Bd5 when the WK is a sitting duck. The only chance was 24.Ke3! when it's surprisingly difficult for the rooks and bishop to net the king. I was going to go pawn-scabbing for a while first, but a line like 24...Rxb2 25.Qxa7 h6 26.a4 Rdd2 isn't clear, although Black has all the chances. I must feed this to the machines. 24...Rxb2! Taken with impunity. If now 25.Qxa7 Rd3+ and mate soon follows.
25.Qa3?! Rdd2 and it's all over, apart from my subsequent vacillation over where best to put my rooks 26.Qe7 Rxg2+ 27.Kf4 Rbf2+ 28.Ke3 Re2+ 29.Kd4 Rd2+ 30.Kc3 Rc2+ 31.Kb4 Rb2+ 32.Ka3 h6 33.Rd1 Rxa2+ 34.Kb4 Rgb2+ 35.Kc5 Rc2+ 36.Kd4 Rxh2 37.Re1 Rh4+ 38.Kd3 Rh3+ 39.Re3 Rxe3+ 40.Kxe3 a5 0-1