Robatsch (Modern) DefenseB06

Sevillano E. (2520)
Lawton C. (2350)

ch-USA (2)
Saint Louis USA, 2009

1. e4 d6 2. d4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 This is a different move-order from the normal Pirc which starts. 1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6. The difference here is that black delays the development of the king's knight to strike at the center sooner. 4. Be2 a6!? Interesting move that is designed to initiate a quick expansion on the queenside. 5. Nf3 b5 6. O-O Nd7 Hikaru Nakamura recently played this line with success against Alexander Delchev. Delchev played the Austrian Attack setup with f4 Nf3 and Bd3. This line is very difficult to play for black and he has to be wary of getting king stuck in center. 7. e5!? Bb7 7... dxe5 8. dxe5 Nxe5 9. Bf4 8. e6! A bold try... and a very strong one. White wrecks the pawn structure. 8... fxe6 9. Ng5

9... Nf8 10. Bf3 Setting traps. 10... d5 10... Qc8 10... Bxf3 11. Qxf3 Nf6 12. Qc6+ N6d7 13. d5 11. Bg4 Qd6 12. Re1 Bc8 12... e5! 13. Qf3 Nf6 14. Bf4 Qc6 White has a lead in development, but black has a solid position. 15. Be5 h6 16. Bxf6 Bxf6 17. Nxe6 Bxe6 18. Rxe6

18... Nxe6 19. Nxd5 Kf7 Black is an exchange up, but it's hard to see white's compensation for donated material. 20. Re1 Nf4? 20... Nxd4 and white can resign after 21. Rxe7+ Kf8 22. Qe4 Rd8 23. Nxf6 Qxf6 and white is a rook down. Now the game takes a twist. 21. Nxf4 Qxf3 22. Bxf3 Rab8 23. Bd5+ White has pressure on the light squares and is able to disrupt black's development of rooks on the open files. 23... Kg7 24. Ne6+ Kh7 25. c3 b4 26. c4 b3 27. a3 Rhc8 28. Re2 g5?! Not certain what black had in mind here, but it give white more access to the already weakened light squares. This was almost a fatal mistake. 29. Bc6 Kg6 30. g4 Continuing to blockade on the light squares. 30... Kf7 31. d5?! Hems the bishop in, but white is planning to surround the pawn on b3. 31... h5 32. gxh5 Rh8 33. Nxc7 Rxh5 34. Bd7 34. Nxa6 Rbh8 35. Bd7 (35. f3 Bd4+ 36. Kh1 Bxb2 37. Rxb2 Rxh2+ 38. Rxh2 Rxh2+ 39. Kxh2 b2=) 35... Rxh2 36. Be6+ Kg6 34... Rh4 35. Nxa6 Rb6 36. Nb4?!

Sevilliano gives up a valuable passed pawn to surround the b-pawn, but Lawton recognizes that he has to give back material. 36... Rxc4 37. Ba4 Rcxb4 38. axb4 Rxb4 39. Bd7 Rc4 40. Re3 Rc2 41. Rxb3 Rxb2 The game is now theoretically drawn. 42. Rf3 Kg7 43. Be6 Rd2 44. Kg2 Kg6 45. h3 Rb2 46. Rd3 Rc2 47. Kf1 Rc3 48. Rd2 Be5 49. Ra2 Rb3 50. Kg2 Rb4 51. Ra8 Rf4 52. Rg8+ Kf6 53. Bg4 Bd4 54. f3 Bc5 55. Bh5 Ra4 56. Rg6+ Kf5 57. Rc6 Ra2+ 58. Kf1 Bd6 59. Rc4 Rd2 60. Bf7 Kf6 61. Be6 Rh2 62. Rc8 Bf4 63. Rf8+ Kg6 64. Kg1 Rd2 65. Kf1 Rh2 66. Rg8+ Kf6 67. Rh8 Kg7 68. Rg8+ Kf6 69. Re8 Rd2 70. h4

70... Rd1+ Of course not 70... gxh4?? 71. Rf8+ Kg5 72. Rf5+ 71. Ke2 Rd2+ 72. Ke1 Rh2 73. Rf8+ Kg6 74. Rg8+ Kf6 75. Rf8+ Kg6 76. hxg5 Bxg5 77. f4 Bf6 78. Rg8+ Kh7 79. Rg1 Rb2 80. Bf5+ Kh8 81. Rg6 Bc3+ 82. Kf1 Bb4 83. Be6 Bc5 84. f5 Rf2+ 85. Ke1 Rb2 86. Rg8+ Kh7 87. Rc8 Bd4 88. Rc6 Bf6 89. Rc7

White can make absolutely no progress in this position. A draw? Why then would this be a "Fire on Board" feature? Well... the game was not as fiery as some of the previous versions, but a controversy evolved and as a result the game came to an abrupt end. After 89.Rc7 was recorded as the last move, spectators on the ICC were wondering how white won and assumed that there was a relay issue. What happened was that Lawton has forfeited on time because he was told by the arbiter Carol Jarecki to correct his scoresheet. Lawton had several moves missing and according to Jarecki, had stopped taking notation well before the five-minute mark. FIDE rule Article 8.1 states that a player must record each move for both players. Article 8.4 states that if a player has less than five minutes then he is exempt from keeping score. Lawton was clearly over five minutes as he tried catching up. According to Jarecki, the dispute started when he had over eight minutes. He started correcting his scoresheet, but lapsed once again. Jarecki intervened once again as his clock went to six minutes. As he continued to correct his scoresheet, his clock went under five minutes and thus, he claimed he was no longer required to keep score. Jarecki had stated that he must get the scoresheet up-to-date (Article 8.1) for the rule (Article 8.4) to apply. Lawton complained and stated there wasn't enough time to go back and fill in the incorrect moves on the scoresheet. Jarecki offered Sevillano's scoresheet and has Lawton attempted, his time ticked away. More debate ensued and Lawton stated that he would merely allow his time to run out. This was an unfortunate case. Both players had played a hard game and fought to a draw. What is clear is that score must be kept during the game. What is not clear is what happens in the event that a player's score is incorrect or illegible. Rarely is a player cited for scoresheet infractions. In addition, how does an arbiter know how many moves are missing and what those moves are. This is especially problematic if both players have missing moves. Digital clocks may offer some insight on the number of moves played. Be that as it may, it was an unfortunate situation that brought a damper to the hometown favorite competing in the U.S. Championship. 1-0 [Shabazz D.]

Game(s) in PGN