The Bitter Taste of a Mate in Three | Road to GM, Game 101

A game full of mental tactics in which the evaluation went from -17 to +5 and back. Missed opportunities on both sided. The last mistake decided the game. Unfortunately for me.

2019 Split Open, Round 8, 08/10/2019, S. Jerkovic (1735) vs S. Tomic (1920), Caro-Kann

1. e4 c6 2. f4 d5 3. d3 dxe4 4. Nc3 exd3
5. Bxd3 Nf6 6. Nf3 Bg4 7. h3 Bxf3 8. Qxf3 e6
9. f5 e5 10. Bg5 Nbd7 11. O-O-O Be7 12. Rhe1 Qc7
13. Bxf6 Bxf6 14. Ne4 Be7 15. Bc4 O-O 16. g4 b5
17. Bb3 a5 18. c3 a4 19. Bc2 b4 20. g5 f6
21. h4 bxc3 22. Qxc3 Nb6 23. Rg1 Qc8 24. Rdf1 Nd5
25. Qg3 Ra7 26. gxf6 Bxf6 27. Bxa4 Nf4 28. Qg4 Qa6
29. Bb3+ Kh8 30. Kb1 Qd3+ 31. Bc2 Qc4 32. b3 Qb4
33. Rf2 c5 34. Nxf6 Rxf6 35. Rd1 Qb6 36. Rfd2 Rf8
37. Qg1 Qa5 38. Be4 c4 39. Qe3 c3 40. Rc2 Rc7
41. Rdc1 Rfc8 42. Qf3 Qb4 43. h5 Nxh5 44. Bd5 Nf6
45. Be6 e4 46. Qg3 Nd7 47. Rh1 Qe7 48. Rxh7+ 1 – 0

In round 8, which turned out to be the last round I played in Split, I faced a very tricky opponent. He played a bad gambit straight out of the opening and got me out of theory on move 3. I was better, and a pawn up, but he had an attack.

We castled on opposite sides and just went all in. It was crazy. In my opinion (during the game) it could have gone either way. The only thing that was certain is that it wasn’t going to be a draw. I had a huge attack at one point. I weakened his king and stormed it. And then I missed a mate in two after a series of blunders.

After the game I was crushed, needless to say. But chess life goes on. I have to work on my tactical skills. That’s a priority!

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