This fabulous game from round 3, is definitely a candidate for game of the tournament. Layla Timergazi takes down Scott Wastney in a breakthrough performance.
Wastney, Scott - Timergazi, Layla Autumn Cup 2016 2016
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nd2 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Bf5 5.Ng3 Bg6 6.h4 h6 7.Nh3 Nf6 8.Bc4 e6 9.Nf4 Bh7 10.O-O Bd6 11.Ngh5 O-O 12.Re1 Nxh5 13.Nxh5 Qxh4 14.g3 Qe7
Moves are clickable
This has all been played before, and White has scored well from here in a small number of games that all started with 15.Qg4 15.Kg2 This is a novelty but interestingly the computer prefers it to Qg4, although only after thinking for quite a while. It this all part of Scott's preparation? It's a definite possibility! 15...Bg6 16.Qg4 Nd7 17.Bxh6! Fireworks begin 17...gxh6 18.Rxe6! An essential link in the chain 18...fxe6 19.Qxg6+ Kh8 20.Qxh6+ Qh7 21.Qe3? 21.Qxe6! Rae8 22.Qxd6 Qxh5 23.Qxd7 Qf3+ and a perpetual is a computer line 21...Nb6!? 21...Qxh5 22.Rh1 and now the Queen on e3 prevents Rxf2+ (presumably the idea of Qe3) but 22...Qxh1+ 23.Kxh1 Rf6 and Black is doing well 22.Bd3 Nd5
23.Qd2? Allowing a winning combo 23.Qe2 Qh6 24.Rh1 Bxg3! is good for Black too 23.Qxe6! Looks crazy but is best apparently 23...Qxh5 24.Rh1 Nf4+!! The star move 25.Kg1 Nh3+ 26.Kf1 Bxg3 27.Bg6 Qh4 Completing an impressively absolute defence to attack turnaround 0-1
From round 4, Phil Rossiter annotates his game against Yogesh Kulkarni.
Philip Rossiter - Yogesh Kulkarni 2016 Autumn Cup 2016
1.Nf3 d5 2.b3 How to explain this move? Well, I had spent the previous weekend celebrating my 50th birthday, and on the day of this game I got a present from family in Denmark, namely a Doctor Who chess set! Maybe this was on my mind as I play an opening named after chess's great Dane, Bent Larsen. 2...c5 3.e3 3.Bb2 was played in the famous 6th game of the Petrosian-Fischer Candidates Final 1971. Fischer, as Black, won this game through sheer will power. I play the move recommended by commentators on that game. [Ed: Ewen Green explained to me how I had repeating one of the classic opening mistakes in the postmortem to Forster-Green NZ Champs 2013 - I had played 3.Bb2, and Ewen followed Fischer with 3...f6! after which White cannot contest square e5. 3.e3 is a much better move for that reason] 3...Nc6 4.Bb2 Bg4 Now I had a bit of a think. I could play 4.Be2 and go in to a slow, hedgehog type of game. But instead I made the more ambitious decision to treat this opening like a reversed Nimzo-Indian. 5.Bb5 a6 6.Bxc6+ bxc6 7.h3 Bh5 8.g4 Bg6 9.d3 9.Nh4 ans 9.h4 were possible, but with Black still needing to make important decsions about development, I felt I could take some time for mine. 9...f6 10.Nbd2 e5 11.Nh4 Bf7 12.Qf3 Nh6 The software thinks this move is good, but it's an unhappy place for the knight. 13.c4 The aforementined software doesn't like this and now thinks Black is slightly better, but I was still following my reversed Nimzo strategy, as well as wanting to force a decision in the centre. 13...Bd6 14.e4 d4 This can't be good. I was expecting Black to either castle or play ...Bc7. Now White has a clear way ahead...as for Black's Bishops... 15.Nf5 Nxf5 16.exf5 Kd7 I understood this move, as Black doesn't want to defend c6 with a major piece. The software thinks Black should just castle and sacrifice the pawn. Either way, I was really starting to like my position. 17.Ne4
Moves are clickable
At some point later in the game, I remembered the ending of the famous Humphrey Bogart film, The Maltese Falcon. Someone asks Bogey what the statue is. He famously replies 'the stuff that dreams are made of.' I thought that about this Knight, which comes to dominate the position. 17...Qa5+ This move is ineffectual. Black really had to create some play with plans around either ...a5 or ...g6. 18.Ke2 Be7 19.h4 h6 20.Bc1 Qd8 I could sense that Yogesh wasn't happy. White is on top now and Black cannot initiate anything. White is threatening g5 but I don't have to hurry this, but can just improve my position. 21.Bd2 Here I was expecting ...a5. 21...g5 But instead Black makes a bad mistake after which he is lost. 22.hxg5 hxg5 23.Rxh8 Qxh8 24.Rh1 Qg7 25.Qh3 I did consider playing 25.Bxg5 here, but I felt the move played was good as well, and there was no need to change the character of the position. 25...Rf8 26.Qh6 Qxh6 27.Rxh6 Be8 28.Ba5 Of course, White is going to win material here, but just look at that Knight...even Petrosian or Nimzowitch might be proud of it. 28...Rf7 29.Bb6
29...Bf8 This might be considered a mistake, but the c5 and f6 pawns are dropping no matter what Black does. 30.Rxf6 Rxf6 31.Nxf6+ Ke7 32.Ne4 Bh6 33.Bxc5+ Kd8 34.f6 34.Bd6 was a little better, but it makes no difference. 34...Bg6 35.Be7+ Ke8 36.Kf3 Here Yogesh resigned. How fitting that White offers his Maltese Falcon, but like in the film, the price would be too high. 1-0