Games from the Maritimes

Manley-Song, New Brunswick Active Championship 2017

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Ahead of this weekend's New Brunswick Active Championship in Saint John, here's the attack that decided the 2017 edition of the event:

[Event "NB Quick Chess Championship"]
[Site "Fredericton"]
[Date "2017.04.30"]
[Round "5.1"]
[White "Manley, Jason"]
[Black "Song, Sam"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B22"]
[WhiteElo "2120"]
[BlackElo "2249"]
[Annotator "Manley,Jason"]
[PlyCount "60"]
[EventDate "2017.??.??"]

{(Notes:2022) The last round of the 2017 NB Quick Chess Championship
saw another installment of my rivalry with Sam Song, as we both sat at 4/4
heading into the game.} 1. e4 c5 2. c3 d5 {Sam knows his counters to the
Alapin Sicilian. The position is virtually equal right off the bat.} 3. exd5
Qxd5 4. d4 Nf6 5. Nf3 Bg4 6. Be2 e6 7. O-O cxd4 {
Solid if fairly unambitious. Black looks to clarify the central position.} 8.
Nxd4 {cxd4, conceding the isolated queen pawn for freer development, was more
aggressive line, fighting for scraps of advantage rather than trading to quiet
equality.} Bxe2 9. Qxe2 Bc5 10. Be3 {?! A minor inaccuracy. Rd1, looking to
claim the d-file while trading knight for bishop, would leave White with a
small but clear edge.} Bxd4 {?! This trade appears a little unnecessary,
gifting White an edge as the game moves towards a wide open middlegame.} 11.
Bxd4 Nbd7 12. Nd2 {The less natural Na3 deserves consideration.} O-O 13. Nb3 {
?! This move lacks a clear purpose. Nf3 was much more natural.} e5 14. Be3 b6
15. Rfd1 Qe6 16. Rd2 Rfe8 17. Rad1 {
Doubling on the d-file gives White a focus of power and a clear plus.} Nf8 18.
Rd6 Qf5 19. Qd3 e4 {
!? Sam is playing aggressively, looking to avoid a calm queen trade.} 20. Qd2
Ng6 21. Bg5 Ng4 22. Rd5 Qe6 {Black has slowly taken over the position while
avoiding any significant concessions on the d-file. White is in more danger
than he realizes, as Black's pieces are more active and directly positioned.}
23. h3 N4e5 24. Qd4 h6 25. Be3 {?} Nf3+ {!! Sam doesn't miss his chance.
Black's attack is quick, ruthless and indefensible. A well-earned victory for
Black!} 26. gxf3 Qxh3 27. Bxh6 gxh6 28. Qf6 exf3 29. Rg5 hxg5 30. Qxg5 Re4 {
And with no way to defend against Rg4, I resigned.} 0-1
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