Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Mate in 17

In a game of speed chess, I mated my opponent in 17 moves.  He was Callasse of the USA, who played black.  Here are the moves of the game along with my commentary:

1. e4 e5
2. Nf3 Nc6
3. Bb5 Qf6

Black brings out the queen early.  The move Nf6 is common here.

4. Bxc6 Qxc6
5. 0-0 Bd6

Black's move blocks the d-pawn and prevents the development of the light-squared bishop.

6. c3 Qxe4

Black gains a pawn, but with the king in the centre of the board this is risky.

7. Re1 Qf5
8. d4 f6

My aim is to open the centre.

9. dxe fxe
10. Nbd2 Nh6
11. Nc4 Ng4

It is better for black to castle.

12. Nxd6+ cxd6
13. Qxd6 e4

Now black cannot castle.  My knight is immune from capture because of my rook on e1.

14. Bg5 Qf7

Black prevents mate on e7.  The problem is that e4 is now unprotected.  A better move for black is Nf6.

15. Rxe4+ Qe6

Black's move is forced.

16. Rxe6+ dxe6

17. Qe7#

Black's failure to castle and lack of development allow me to achieve a quick mate.  His third move, Qf6, is a mistake because it develops the queen too early and puts the queen on a square ideal for the knight.  The sixth move, Qxe4, is an example of a move that neglects development.

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