Pondering for long could end in misery

Chess Checks

In the game which follows, it is not one but both players who commit mistakes and blunders in time trouble.

 White: Eduards Rozentalis(2575). Black: Maris Krakops(2510) Tallinn, 1998
Centre Counter Gambit
 1.e4 d5
The centre counter
2.exd5
Accepting the pawn offer
2. ..Nf6 3.d4 Bg4 4.Nf3 Qxd5 5.Be2 e6
A rather timid move by Black which should make White happy! He should have tried to pile on pressure on the central pawn by playing 5. ..Nc6.
6.h3 Bh5 7.c4 Qd7 8.Nc3
If 8.g4 Bg6 9.Ne5
8...Bxf3 9.Bxf3 Nc6 10.Be3 0–0–0
Black decides to castle on the queen side
11.Nb5
Two fold purpose of supporting the central apwn and also putting pressure on the King
11...Bb4+
Here Black can think about 11. ..Kb8
12.Kf1
White has to forego castling
12. ..Kb8 13.Qb3 a6
He wants to take care of the knight as White is threatening
14.Nxa7. If 13...Be7 14.Nxa7 Kxa7
15.d5+ Kb8
16.dxc6 Qd3+
17.Qxd3 Rxd3 18.cxb7 with advantage for White and if 13...a5 14.c5 e5 15.a3 exd4 16.Bf4 also gives advantage to white
14.Nxc7 Qxc7 15.Bxc6 Qxc6 16.Qxb4
White has won a pawn
16. ..Ka8
If 16...Ne4 followed by 17... Nd6 and then to 18....Nf5 would have been better for Black as it would offer him some drawing chances.
17.f3
White can try to trade queens with17.Qc5
17...Nh5 18.Kf2
Making way for the rook to enter the warfare
18. ..Qc7 19.Qc5
Not making the best move here! He would have been clearly better after 19.Rhe1 or even 19.Rhd1
19...Qg3+ 20.Kf1 g6
Taking precautions to guard the knight if White plays  22.d5 . If 20...Nf4 21.Rg1 and then 22.d5
 21.Bf2 Qf4 22.Qe5
A mistake! White is eager to swap queens but this move allows the Black queen to enter his territory. Better here is 22.Rd1
22...Qd2 23.b3 f6
A good move!
24.Qe1
If 24.Qxe6 Rhe8 with advantage for Black. And if  24.Qe4 Rxd4 25.Qxd4 Ng3+ 26.Kg1 (26.Bxg3 Qxd4) 26...Ne2+ is also better for Black
24...Rxd4 25.Bxd4 Qxd4 26.Rc1 Rd8
The position is equal here and a draw might appear a just result
27.g3
A blunder! White is a bit ambitious and should have tried for a draw.
He is an exchange up but Black has plenty of compensation for it! He should have played 27.c5 Qb2 28.Rd1 Ng3+ 29.Kg1 Rxd1 30.Qxd1 Ne2+
31.Kf1 (31.Kh2 Qe5+ 32.f4 Qxf4+
33.g3 Qxg3 checkmate) 31...Ng3+ 32.Kg1
27...Qb2
If 27...Nxg3+ 28.Qxg3 Qd3+ 29.Kg2 Qd2+ 30.Qf2 Qg5+
31.Kh2 Rd2 32.Rc2 Rxf2+
33.Rxf2 Qf4+ 28.Rg1 Rd3 29.Rg2 Rxf3+ 30.Kg1
Diagram 1
30. ..Qd4+
Now a mistake by Black which tilts the game in White’s favour. He should have played 30...Rxg3 31.Rxg3 Nxg3 32.Rd1 Ne2+ 33.Kh1 Nd4 34.Qh4
31.Kh2 Nxg3?
Another blunder!
32.Rxg3 Qf4 33.Rc3 Rf1 34.Qe3 Rf2+ 35.Kg1 Rf1+ 36.Kg2 Qf5 37.Rd3 1–0
Diagram 2
Black to play and win
1... Raxd2 2.Rxd2
If 2.Qxd2 Rxd2 3.Rxd2 Qe1 checkmate
2...Re1+ 3.Qxe1 Qxe1 checkmate

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