A Sample Colle Game

Here’s another game 30, courtesy of Chess.com. I played as white. Themes include key squares, piece coordination, prophylaxis and control along the a8-h1 diagonal. Black’s relaxed rooks decided the game. How could they have better participated in the struggle?

This opening system is called the Colle. White pressures black’s king early and often. It has my endorsement.

[WhiteElo “1619”]
[BlackElo “1507”]
[PlyCount “91”]

1. c3 d5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. e3 g6 (3… Bf5 4. Qb3 Qc8 5. c4 e6 6. cxd5 exd5) 4. d4
Bg7 5. Bd3 {We have a Colle.} O-O 6. Nbd2 Nc6 7. O-O Bd7 8. Re1 Qc8 9. e4 dxe4
10. Nxe4 Re8 11. Ne5 Nxe5 12. dxe5 Ng4 (12… Nxe4 13. Bxe4 Bxe5 14. Qd5 Bf6
15. Qxb7 Qxb7 16. Bxb7 Rab8 17. Be4 {White holds little edge.}) (12… Nxe4 13.
Rxe4 Bf5 14. Rd4 Bxe5 {Black’s bishops are good.}) 13. f4 f6 14. h3 (14. Nc5 {
! Black has to keep watch over both the knight and the e6 thrust.} Bf5 15. Qb3+
Kh8 16. Bxf5 {White will win the b-pawn.})

14… Nh6 15. exf6 exf6 16. Bc4+ Kh8 17. Nf2 {White’s position is a bit passive after this.} Nf5 18. Bd2 b5 19. Bf7 Rf8 20. Bb3 c5 21. Bc2 Bc6 22. a4 {To gain space} Qb7 23. axb5 Bxg2 24. Ne4 Nh4 25. Qg4 g5 (25… f5 26. Qxh4 fxe4 {I prefer black’s position by a slight
margin.}) 26. fxg5 fxg5 27. Bxg5 Nf3+ 28. Kxg2 Nxe1+ 29. Rxe1 {The crosspin
looks great optically but white can hold his material.} h6

30. Be3 Bxc3 {! It’s a really good try. Sometimes the queen ends up being enough. The minor pieces have excellent chances here however.} 31. bxc3 Rg8 32. Bxc5 Rxg4+ 33.
hxg4 Rg8 {This is really a decisive mistake. With the rook in the game who
knows? Black needed to watch the powerful bishops.} (33… Qxb5 34. Bd4+ Kg8
35. Nc5) 34. Bd4+ Kh7 35. Kh3 {!} Rg6 36. Ng3 Qxb5 37. Re7+ Kg8 38. Bxg6 Qg5
39. Rxa7 {Qxg6 is not a threat due to the piece liquidation that’d follow.} Kf8
40. Bf5 {I’m in time trouble White’s success depends upon his ability to ward
off spite checks.The knight covers the light squares around my king. The
dark-squared bishop and rook will escort the the c-pawn.} Qc1 41. Ra8+ Ke7 42.
Rc8 Kd6 43. c4 Qd1 44. c5+ Kd5 45. Bf2 Qd2 46. Rd8+ 1-0


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