Pt. Townsend Open, Round Three
R. Risley v. K. Terry
Mexican Defense (Black Knights Tango)
Commentary by Risley
Note: Carlos Torre plays this defense in the 1920’s, but eventually gives it up. Georgi Orlov breathes a little life into it later in the century.
1.Nf3 Nf6 2. c4 Nc6 3. g3 e5
Black’s king pawn might be premature since there is no d4 pawn to provoke
4. Bg2 h6
I think my opponent is hoping to push the e pawn and awkward my knight, using the tempo to establish an early f5 pawn.
5. d4 ed 6. Nxe4 Ne5 7. b3 Be5 8.e3 0-0 9. Nc3 Re8 10. 0-0 Rb8 11. Qc2 b6 12. Ne4
Even though 12...Nxe4 13. Bxe4 is not much of a threat, moving the c3 knight helps clear the c-file and the long diagonal.
12. …Nxe4 13. Bxe4 Bb7 14. Bd5?
I want to use the trade to open the c-file, but I hadn’t set it up very well. I considered trading to put the rook on b7
14. …Bxd5 15. cxd5 Bxd4 16. exd4 Nf3+ 17. Kg2 Nxe4 18. Qc4
After the smoke cleared, I felt slightly optimistic about having space, tempo and lots of clock in exchange for the lost pawn.
18. …Nf5 19. Bf4
I wanted to put the Bishop at b2 but this seemed more active. I’m nervous about letting Kevin have any tempo. I was pretty sure he’d have to reply with d6, which improves my attacking chances.
19…d6 20. Rc1 Rb7? 21. Rfe1 Rxe1 22.Rxe1 g5 23. Qc6
I wanted to make trouble on the e8 square and keep the undescended c-pawn pinned back
23. …Rb8 24.Bd2? Ne7 25. Qc4 Qd2 26. Bc1?
Inaccurate bishop play on my part. I had two better moves: 26. Bc3 threatens on the long diagonal, 26 Rc1 spoils the coming out party for the c-pawn.
26. …c6 27.dc Qxc6 28. Qxc6 Nxc6 29. f4 g5 30. Bb2 Kf8 31.h3
31. Bf6 is clearly the better move. Clearing the h-file probably doesn’t help.
31. …h5 32.hg hg 33. Rc1
I can see that his knight doesn’t have great squares and I’m hoping to back him up to e7 and follow with 34.Rc7
33. …Nb4? 34.Ba3 a5 35. Rd1 Ke7 36.Rd4 Nc2 37. Bd6+ Ke3 38. Rd2 Rc8 39. Be5 Rc6 40 Re2 Kd5 41. Kf2 Nb4 42.Rd2+ Ke6 43. a3 Nd5 44. Re2 f6 45. Bd4+ Kf5 46. Rd2 Ke4?
Black’s knight is lost.
47. Bb2 b5 48. Rd4 1-0