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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4 (Read 12629 times)
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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #23 - 09/02/17 at 20:30:54
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Stefan Buecker wrote on 08/24/17 at 11:07:14:
did you consider not to play e5 or c5 at all, in certain circumstances? There exist setups with c6 and Na6-c7, and your hint that you didn't like the passive Na6 could signal such a preference for more flexibility, delaying c7-c5 and e7-e5. Also, did you consider Bc8-g4?

I can remember and the answer is no. Last month I did but didn't find anything I liked (not that I tried hard and it will be a few weeks before I do).

Stefan Buecker wrote on 08/25/17 at 19:21:21:
In the old days when young Germans learned the game based on Kurt Richter books, traps like 4...Nb4 were common knowledge. Today we live in a different era. People who haven't read many chess books

Back in the 1980's I had a clubmate who consistently played the Kieler Variation. He was ridiculed, but had some success - nobody I knew had read any Kurt Richter book. So I bet that even folks who have read many chess books will be surprised.
  

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Re: Kiel Game: 4.c4 Nb4!?
Reply #22 - 08/25/17 at 19:21:21
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RdC wrote on 08/24/17 at 23:57:06:
At some levels the key point is that White should play a3, with or without flicking in Qa4 as well. If the opponent's rating is low enough to justify it, White might fall into the "trap" of trying to win a piece. Black still has to handle the resulting tactics though.

[...]

One thing I did discover by analysing with someone who played this regularly was that the natural 6. Nf3 is probably necessary as if 6. Be3 the punt of 6. .. e5 works well. The main point is that after 7. dxe5 Qxd1 8. Kxd1 Nc6 9. f4, the c5 square is available. It's an ending where you sacrifice a pawn, get the Queens off and have lots of activity.

Great point. The following game illustrates your observation.


In the old days when young Germans learned the game based on Kurt Richter books, traps like 4...Nb4 were common knowledge. Today we live in a different era. People who haven't read many chess books and were raised on a diet of ChessBase and Stockfish, can still be surprised by 4...Nb4. Working out the trap over the board requires time.

5.a3 also has the effect that White will rarely castle long. King on c1, checkmated by Nb3 and Bf5... a "knightmare". Sometimes White's desire not to weaken his position is so strong that he avoids a2-a3 completely and plays the risky 5.Nf3?!. Or perhaps this 2344 rated player had overlooked 5...Bf5.


Of course 11...0-0-0 (instead of 11...Nd4?) collects a sound extra pawn. White therefore should have played 9.Be3 =. There exists another solid way to counter White's setup: 6...e5 7.Nxe5 N4c6 =. But the most promising solution is the following:

1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4 5.Nf3? Bf5 6.Na3 e6 7.Be2 N8c6! Black exerts pressure on White's center. 8.0-0 Be7 9.Bd2 0-0 10.Bc3 Bf6 11.Qd2 Qe7 12.h3 Rfd8 13.Qe3 g5 14.Rfd1 Rd7 15.Rd2 Rad8.

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Black has an edge (-0.50). A reminder that a pawn center is only strong if it can move forward.
  
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Re: Kiel Game: 4.c4 Nb4!?
Reply #21 - 08/24/17 at 23:57:06
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Stefan Buecker wrote on 08/17/17 at 22:20:14:
1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4 5.a3! N4a6 6.Nf3



At some levels the key point is that White should play a3, with or without flicking in Qa4 as well. If the opponent's rating is low enough to justify it, White might fall into the "trap" of trying to win a piece. Black still has to handle the resulting tactics though.

I did try it once in a 30 minute game. My opponent thought for 15 minutes if not 20 as to whether a player of supposedly 2000 or higher standard would really leave a piece en prise at move 5 or 6. He did eventually believe me, played a3 and got an excellent game. Time pressure did for him as he failed to accurately maintain control.

It would be nice if there was a route to a playable position after 5 a3. There are some traps and tricks, but can it really work at a 2000 plus level?

One thing I did discover by analysing with someone who played this regularly was that the natural 6. Nf3 is probably necessary as if 6. Be3 the punt of 6. .. e5 works well. The main point is that after 7. dxe5 Qxd1 8. Kxd1 Nc6 9. f4, the c5 square is available. It's an ending where you sacrifice a pawn, get the Queens off and have lots of activity.
  
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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #20 - 08/24/17 at 11:07:14
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MNb wrote on 08/24/17 at 02:54:16:
I can't help but be reminded of the GM saying "if one piece is bad your entire position is bad" - and in the last line Na6 remains bad.
Unfortunately next few weeks I haven't much time for serious analysis.

Mark, no serious analysis needed. That's my job, for the forthcoming book The Kiel Game. Play the Nieuweboer System and Pforzheim Gambit. Smiley

However, it would be interesting to know more about your general ideas. You wrote: "if White prevents ...e5 then play ...c5". Perhaps you can remember: did you consider not to play e5 or c5 at all, in certain circumstances? There exist setups with c6 and Na6-c7, and your hint that you didn't like the passive Na6 could signal such a preference for more flexibility, delaying c7-c5 and e7-e5. Also, did you consider Bc8-g4?

What I liked in the 1962 correspondence game: it would be a solution to the Bg5 problem. Black plays g6, Bg7 and 0-0, still keeping the knight on b8. When White prematurely plays Bg5, Black still has the antidote Nc6. - Also, the idea to exchange both bishops for White's knights seems logical and sound. However, knights vs bishops makes it more likely that Black wants to build a kind of fortress.
« Last Edit: 08/24/17 at 20:00:03 by Stefan Buecker »  
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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #19 - 08/24/17 at 02:54:16
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I can't help but be reminded of the GM saying "if one piece is bad your entire position is bad" - and in the last line Na6 remains bad.
Unfortunately next few weeks I haven't much time for serious analysis.
  

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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #18 - 08/23/17 at 22:57:07
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The move Nb8-d7 works perfectly against an early b2-b4, and very well against many other set-ups. However, in the main line we've encountered serious difficulties, illustrated in the last post. So I have decided to drop the "thematic move" for this case and look at the immediate 9...c5 10.d5 e5. The following correspondence game (source: Dr. Timothy Harding's MegaCorr3 CD) offers valuable insights.

  
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Kiel Game: 4.c4 Nb4!?
Reply #17 - 08/17/17 at 22:20:14
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My attempts to identify a possible main line for the "Kiel Game" have run into several dead ends. Here is what comes closest, in my opinion, to a playable interpretation of MNb's concept.

1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4 5.a3! N4a6 6.Nf3

The alternative 6.b4 looks good enough for Black.

6...g6 7.Nc3 Bg7 8.Be2 0-0 9.0-0

It seems unnecessary to play h2-h3, the pin Bc8-g4 doesn't fit into Black's general plan.

9...Nd7 10.Bg5!

Now I've accepted that this is White's strongest option. Provoking h7-h6 is useful against the c7-c5 plan, and even more so against e7-e5.

10...h6

If Black wants to lure White's d-pawn to d5, he can try the immediate 10...c5?! 11.d5 h6 12.Be3 Nc7 13.Qd2 Kh7 14.Rad1 e5. However, this pawn formation is a shaky affair: 15.g4!, and White has all the fun.

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11.Be3 e5

The alternative 11...c5 is more or less refuted by 12.Qe1!, for example 12...cxd4 13.Nxd4 followed by Rad1 and f4. The e1 square is perfect: the Queen doesn't hamper the development of other pieces, and can later attack Black's king. The Nd4 can hop to b5.

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12.b4!

12.dxe5 and 12.Qc2 are serious alternatives, but not as dangerous as the text move. Or 12.d5 f5. White has an edge, that's all, I don't think many would regard the opening as refuted by these lines. In particular if it's an opening with such a dubious reputation.

12...exd4 13.Bxd4 c5! 14.Bxg7 Kxg7 15.Qb3!

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As innocuous as this treatment appears, Black is now struggling badly for his survival. White's pieces dominate in the center, and the Na6 and Ra8 are painfully undeveloped. The only rescue seems to be a drastic measure to eliminate White's remaining pawns on the queenside.

15...Re8 16.Rad1 Nc7 17.Bd3 cxb4

The announced drastic measure. If 17...Re6 18.Be4 Qf8, White has 19.Bxb7! and the position is almost hopeless.

18.axb4 a5! 19.c5 axb4 20.Qxb4

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20...Na6

Black has alternatives, in each case sacrificing the exchange:
(a) 20...Kh7 21.Ne4 Ne5 22.Be2 Qe7 23.Nd6 Nc6 24.Qb6 Ra4!?.
(b) 20...Qf6 21.Ne4 Rxe4 22.Bxe4 Na6 23.Qa3 Ndxc5.

21.Bxa6 Rxa6 22.Ne4 Ree6 23.Rfe1 Qf8 24.Qc3+ Kg8 25.Nd4 Re5 26.h3 Kh7 27.Qc4 Nxc5 28.Nf6+ Rxf6 29.Rxe5 b6

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Once again, Black had to sacrifice the exchange to get rid of the last remaining white queenside pawn. The odds to hold the draw are not too bad. Yet obviously the resulting position isn't the outcome we've been dreaming of. 
  
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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #16 - 08/10/17 at 21:06:04
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The booklet has arrived - a nice addition to my collection. The author gives some little-known games, and even gets the name "von Zitzewitz" right. Pretty rare to find this correct spelling in a recent opening book... In the meantime I've found a helpful comment (Schach-Echo 1956, p. 307, probably by Alfred Brinckmann, Kiel) on the origin of the move 4...Nb4:

Quote:
Diese Variante ist in die Schachgeschichte unter dem Namen "Kieler Partie" eingegangen, weil Kieler Schachkreise unter Führung meines alten Lehrmeisters Johannes Metger sich näher mit ihr befaßt haben. Ihren dokumentarischen Niederschlag haben die Untersuchungen in der berühmten Partie Rhode - von Zitzewitz (1910) gefunden, [...]

This clears up the confusion from other sources that mention both 4...Nb6 (played by von Hennig) and 4...Nb4 without saying clearly which of the two got the name "Kieler Partie". I take Brinckmann's word for it that opening theoretician Johannes Metger was involved in studying 4...Nb4.


Johannes Metger (1851-1926)

Source: WikiCommons, a photo first published in Deutsche Schachzeitung 1921.
« Last Edit: 08/11/17 at 11:20:42 by Stefan Buecker »  
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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #15 - 08/05/17 at 17:18:48
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MNb wrote on 07/21/17 at 02:11:52:
2. The one exception is an obscure Swedish monograph from 1967 written by a certain Bo Jonsson.

I've just ordered a copy from a second-hand book shop. No need to re-invent the wheel if someone has already burnt the midnight oil.

One of the lines I was a little worried about was 9.c5 (in reply #6). If White can block the intended c7-c5 and prepare Be3, Qd2 and Bh6, the defense could be problematic. Instead of the artificial 9...Ndb8, now I prefer the more natural 9...Nf6 10.Bg5 0-0 11.Rc1 Nb8 12.Bc4 c6! 13.Qd2 b5 14.Bb3 a5, and Black achieves good counterplay with roughly equal chances.

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For example: 15.0-0 axb4 16.axb4 Na6 17.Ne5 Nxb4 18.Rb1 (18.Nxb5 Ba6) 18...Qa5 19.Qb2 Qa3 20.Bxf7+ Rxf7 21.Qxb4 Bf5 22.Bc1 Qxb4 23.Rxb4 Be6 24.Nxf7 Kxf7 25.Rd1 Bc4 26.Rb1 Nd5 27.Nxd5 Bxd5 =.

Other set-ups for White (without c4-c5) usually allow the standard plan c7-c5. More analysis required, of course.   
« Last Edit: 08/06/17 at 05:46:43 by Stefan Buecker »  
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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #14 - 08/01/17 at 03:06:32
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an ordinary chessplayer wrote on 08/01/17 at 02:45:15:
I am really puzzled by this ...Nb4-a6 variation.

You're not the only one - so am I. But that's the fun of it. Moreover, if we succeed in maintaining a playable position against White's best play we will have a game winner (like I had 20 years ago).
For now FM Bücker's line looks very good for White. When I've the time and energy I'll try to find something for Black (right now I don't like 14....Kh7 either iso 14...e5 as Black remains very cramped).
  

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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #13 - 08/01/17 at 02:45:15
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I am really puzzled by this ...Nb4-a6 variation. Is it even possible to contain both ...c7-c5 and ...e7-e5 ? Here is my attempt: 1. e4 d5 2. exd5 Nf6 3. d4 Nxd5 4. c4 Nb4 5. a3 N4a6 6. b4 Nd7 7. Nf3 g6 8. Bf4 Bg7 9. Ra2!? (prophylaxis against ...c7-c5) O-O 10. Be2 c6 (Stockfish's plan is ...Nc7 and ...a7-a5) 11. Nbd2 Nc7 12. Nb3 and I hesitate to assess this position. Black is solid enough and white has no direct threats, but there is the space.
Edited:
On further consideration, black seems fine after 12...b6 13.O-O c5.


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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #12 - 07/31/17 at 22:15:57
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MNb wrote on 07/28/17 at 01:57:33:
1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4 5.a3 N4a6 6.b4 Nd7 7.Nf3 g6 8.Nc3 Bg7 9.Bg5 O-O 10.Be2 h6 11.Be3 c5 12.O-O cxb4 13.axb4 Nxb4 14.Qd2 e5

Stefan Buecker wrote on 07/23/17 at 17:56:29:
[quote author=14173B590 link=1500593005/7#7 date=1500830628]in your line "b", White could have played 15.Bxh6! (instead of 15.d5) 15...exd4 16.Bxg7 Kxg7 17.Nxd4 with a significant advantage. So the provokation of h7-h6 can make sense. Adding the moves 0-0 and Be2 doesn't hurt much either. Altogether I like your line "b". Perhaps Black could even keep the extra pawn: 14...Kh7 (instead of 14...e5), e.g. 15.Rfb1 Na6 16.h4 Nc7 17.h5 g5. Or is this too risky?


How big exactly is that advantage after (15.Bxh6! exd4 16.Bxg7 Kxg7 17.Nxd4 Nc5 18.Rad1 or Rfd1 Qf6 !? Sure White's pieces are more active (especially Bc8 is a problem) but given that pawn on a7 things are not easy.

After 18.Rfd1 Qf6 the variation goes 19.Qb2 a5, and now White sacrifices the exchange - winning it back moments later:

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20.Rxa5! and then:
(a) 20...Rxa5 21.Qxb4 Qa6 (21...b6 22.Nd5) 22.h4 intending 23.h5! gives White a dangerous attack.
(b) 20...Nbd3 21.Rxd3! (21.Bxd3?! Nxd3 22.Rxd3 Rxa5! 23.Ne4 Re8 24.Nxf6?? Re1 mate) 21...Nxd3 22.Bxd3 Qxd4 (22...Rxa5? 23.Ne4 wins, e.g. 23...Ra2 24.Nf5+!) 23.Rxa8 Qxd3 24.Nd5+ f6 25.Ne3 and White has a sound extra pawn (+1.30 or so).
  
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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #11 - 07/28/17 at 01:57:33
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1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4 5.a3 N4a6 6.b4 Nd7 7.Nf3 g6 8.Nc3 Bg7 9.Bg5 O-O 10.Be2 h6 11.Be3 c5 12.O-O cxb4 13.axb4 Nxb4 14.Qd2 e5

Stefan Buecker wrote on 07/23/17 at 17:56:29:
[quote author=14173B590 link=1500593005/7#7 date=1500830628]in your line "b", White could have played 15.Bxh6! (instead of 15.d5) 15...exd4 16.Bxg7 Kxg7 17.Nxd4 with a significant advantage. So the provokation of h7-h6 can make sense. Adding the moves 0-0 and Be2 doesn't hurt much either. Altogether I like your line "b". Perhaps Black could even keep the extra pawn: 14...Kh7 (instead of 14...e5), e.g. 15.Rfb1 Na6 16.h4 Nc7 17.h5 g5. Or is this too risky?


How big exactly is that advantage after (15.Bxh6! exd4 16.Bxg7 Kxg7 17.Nxd4 Nc5 18.Rad1 or Rfd1 Qf6 !? Sure White's pieces are more active (especially Bc8 is a problem) but given that pawn on a7 things are not easy.
  

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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #10 - 07/25/17 at 22:09:23
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MNb wrote on 07/21/17 at 17:08:42:


14...Qg5 is worth looking at.


I guess you meant the wild position after 15.Qd1 0-0 (rather than the ending 15...Bb4+ 16.Kf1 Qxc1) 16.Nxb2 Qxg2 17.Rxc5 Qxh1 18.Kd2 Qxh2. Black can hope to win one or both of the remaining white pawns - sheer fun indeed!

There are still many loose ends (= critical lines) in the "Kieler". I'll be back in a few days. 
  
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Re: Kiel Trap: 1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4
Reply #9 - 07/24/17 at 18:18:51
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The finish in Wilterdink - MNb, corr NBC  I-521, is a tactical gem. And the game is relevant for theory:

1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Nf6 3.d4 Nxd5 4.c4 Nb4 5.Qa4+
!, says Bent Larsen in the first edition of ECO B (1975).
5...N8c6 6.a3
Another ! from Larsen.
6...Na6 7.Be3
The alternative 7.Nf3 also earns a +/- from Larsen, today it is at best a += (Blatny). Another possibility is 7.d5 Nc5 8.Qd1.
7...Bd7 8.Qc2
Here Larsen's variation ends with the assessment +/-. He is wrong.
8.Qd1 e5 9.d5 Nd4 (or 9...Ne7), and Black cannot be worse.
8...e5 9.dxe5

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9.d5 Nd4 10.Lxd4 exd4 11.b4 c5! =, Lahi - Smolensky, corr 1990.
9....Qe7
Maybe too ambitious. Black had a simpler option: 9...Bc5!, winning back the pawn without committing himself to castling long.
10.Nf3 0-0-0 11.Be2 Nxe5 12.h3?
More critical is 12.Nc3!. Black has several options, yet I haven't found a convincing continuation.
12...Nxf3+
Or 12...Qf6 13. 0-0 Bc5 14.Nc3 Bxe3 15.fxe3 Qh6, about equal.
13.Bxf3 Qf6 14.Nc3
Eventually White will regret that he hasn't castled short. Safer was 14.0-0 Nc5 15.Nc3 Bf5 16.Bg4, about =.
14...Bf5! 15.Qb3?

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White is running into difficulties. He should have played 15.Qa4 c6 and then:
(a) 16.Rd1 Qg6 17.Ne2 Bb4+!! 18.axb4 Bc2 19.Bg4+ Kb8 20.Nf4 Bxa4 21.Nxg6 hxg6 22.Ra1 Bb3 23.b5 f5 24.Be2 Nb4 25.0-0 Nc2 26.Rxa7 f4 27.Bf3 fxe3 28.Rxb7+ Kc8 29.fxe3 Nxe3 30.Bc6 Rhf8 31.Ra1 Rd1+ 32.Rxd1 Bxd1 33.Ra7 Kd8 34.c5 Nc4 35.b6 cxb6 36.Rd7+ Kc8 37.Rxd1 bxc5 +=.
(b) 16.0-0-0 Nc5 17.Qb4 Rd4!!

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18.Nd5 (18.Bxd4 Qxd4 19.Nb5 Qf4+ 20.Rd2 Be4! 21.Nxe4 Nxe4 22.Nxa7+ Kb8 23.Nc6+, drawn - eternal check) 18...Qe5 19.Bxd4 Qxd4 20. Rhe1 Bd6, and White has nothing better than 21.Ne7+ Kd7 22.Qb5+ c6 23.Bxc6+ Kd8 24.Re3 Bxe7 25.Be4 Bg5 26.Bxd3 Bxe3+ 27.Kb1 Nxd3 28.fxe3 Qe4  29.Qb3 Kc7 30.Qxd3 Re8, and Black holds the ending.
15...c6 16.Ne4 Qg6 17.Ng3
An error in a bad position.
17...Rd3 18.Qa4 Rxe3+! 19.fxe3 Qxg3+ 20.Ke2 Bd3+! 21.Kd1 Bc5 22.Bxc6 Rd8 23.Bd5 Qf2
White resigns. If 24.Re1 ...

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24...Nb4!! 25.axb4 Bxb4 26.Bxb7+ Kc7 27.Qc6+ Kb8, and it's over.
  
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