Tommyg and I started a 4-game series of 75 15 matches tonight. The first game was a bit of a nail-biter. You can replay the whole game here. The opening was pretty good on both sides - no major slip-ups that I saw. I was getting settled in when he decided to send this queen side pawns down the side. I held them off pretty good, but then he played 12...Ne4; a real tricky move that could have gone disastrous (for me) quite quickly. I had to take his N with my N, but then I could see I would be able to gain a pawn ... except for his playing 14...f6 which would dislodge my N and allow the game to remain even.
Since I still had all my pawns and he only had 3, I needed to figure out a way to queen one of them.
So they started trudging up the side. He tried to get some counter play going with his N, but inevitably, the N would be mine. I kept constant pressure on until he resigned on move 33. I took his B with one of my Rs and then one of my pawns was going to come out a Q.
So a good first battle. We plan on playing next week at the same time.
Game 25 is only a few hours away (with nygren). I need to get some shut-eye for the big match tomorrow morning.