- Jeroen Noomen Column -

Jeroen Noomen is a strong Dutch chess player who supports Ed Schröder with advices for the Rebel chess program, he does analyse all played games by Rebel and is completely responsible for ALL Rebel opening books for more than 10 years now.

If you have suggestions or improvements for the Rebel book click here to contact Jeroen by email.

Jeroen in his column will annotate Rebel games against strong human players and remarkable games against other strong chess programs.

  • Vishy Anand - Rebel10   (analysis of all 8 games)

  • Rebel 8.0 - GM Ralf Akesson

  • Anatoly Karpov - Mephisto Chess Challenger

  • Mephisto Chess Challenger - Anatoly Karpov

  • Jeroen's Millenium Tournament   
    CHESS TIGER WINS MILLENIUM TOURNAMENT                  By Jeroen Noomen
    At the end of November I had bought myself a new PC: An AMD K6-2 500 MHz
    machine. This meant I now had the possibility to play manual games between
    computer programs, as I was not planning to sell my 'old' Pentium 200 MHz
    MMX computer. Gradually I got the idea of playing a computer tournament
    myself. Okay, it could not be held on equal hardware, but the speed
    difference between my PC's - the AMD is 3 times faster - is about equal to
    70 Elo-points. This meant that games still would be very interesting.
    I choose to play in match form, with the following programs:
    1. The King 2.54, running under the Tascbase database program
    2. Chess Tiger 12.0, the DOS version
    3. Hiarcs 7.32
    4. Fritz 5.16
    5. Rebel Century
    6. Junior 5
    7. Genius 5, the DOS version
    8. Nimzo 7.32
    Unfortunately at that moment I didn't have Fritz 6, Shredder 4 and Genius 6.5
    yet, so I had to use older programs. I played the games with the time control
    of the Dutch Open: 90 minutes for the whole game. I like this time limit,
    because the games are at a high level, but on the other hand they will not
    last longer than 3 hours.
    The quarter finals had the following results:
    The King 2.54 - Junior 5        3,0-1,0
    Chess Tiger 12.0 - Genius 5     2,5-0,5
    Hiarcs 7.32 - Fritz 5.16        2,5-0,5
    Rebel Century - Nimzo 7.32      2,5-1,5
    Of course I had to choose which programs would play on the faster machine.
    Two of them were out the question for me: My two heroes Rebel and Chess
    Tiger. The other two became The King and Hiarcs. In the end all the programs
    playing on the faster machine got through to the semi final. Still, the games
    were interesting and especially The King and Rebel had some difficulties
    in their matches. The King was on the verge of losing, but Junior threw away
    a completely winning position! This meant 2-1 instead of 1-2.
    The semi finals had the following results:
    Chess Tiger 12.0 - Hiarcs 7.32  3,0-1,0
    Rebel Century - The King 2.54   3,5-2,5  (after tie-break)
    In these matches both Chess Tiger and Rebel played on the AMD machine. While
    Tiger had an easy win against Hiarcs (two draws and two crushing wins),
    Rebel and The King were tied at 2-2 after 4 games. Both programs used the
    advantage of the white pieces twice, so no score for Black in this match!
    The tiebreak was extremely nervewracking. The King was winning in the first
    game (as White, of course), but Rebel fought back to a draw. In the second
    game Rebel got a positional advantage and duly converted this into a win.
    This meant I got my dream final: Rebel versus Chess Tiger!
    FINAL: Rebel Century - Chess Tiger 12.0
    In the final I didn't change the time control, but decided that both programs
    would play 3 times with the faster machine and 3 times with the slower machine.
    The program playing the faster machine got the Black pieces, so that the
    advantage of the White pieces belonged to the weaker side (from a hardware
    point of view). All in all 6 games were played and it promised to be an
    exciting match. Watch and read how the clash between those two developped!
    View or download the 6 games from the ChessTutor applet. Games are listed as game 9-14. Annotations are included.
    Game 1 ------ Chess Tiger 12.0 P200 MMX - Rebel Century K6-2 500 (1) Queen's gambit 1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Bg5 Be7 5. e3 0-0 6. Nf3 h6 7. Bh4 b6 8. cxd5 Nxd5 9. Bxe7 Qxe7 10. Nxd5 exd5 11. Bd3 Be6 12. 0-0 c5 13. dxc5 bxc5 14. Rc1 Nd7 15. e4 dxe4 16. Bxe4 Rab8 (End of book) 17. b3 Nf6 18. Bd3 Nd5 19. Bb1 Rbc8 20. Qd3 Nf6 21. Rfe1 Rfd8 22. Qc3 Qd6 23. Ne5 Qd2 24. Nd3 Qxc3 25. Rxc3 c4 26. Nf4 cxb3 27. Nxe6 fxe6 28. Rxc8?! (Up till now White was slightly better, but now White has no advantage anymore. Stronger was 28 Rxb3) 28. ... Rxc8 29. axb3 Rc3 30. Bg6 Rxb3 31. Rxe6 Rb6 32. Re7 Rd6 33. Kf1 Rd7 34. Re6 Kf8 35. Ra6 Ke7 36. Ke2 Rc7 37. Bd3 Nd7 38. Ra2 Nc5 39. Bc4 Kd7 40. Ke3 Kc6 41. f3 Re7+ 42. Kd4 Rd7+ 43. Ke5 Re7+ 44. Kf5 Nb7 45. Ba6 Nd6+ 46. Kg6 Kb6 47. Kh7? (A strange decision, why not move the king side pawns with a clear draw? Now Rebel takes the initiative!) 47. ... Nb5! 48. h3 Nc3 49. Ra1 Nd5 50. g3 Nf6+ 51. Kg6 Nd7 52. f4 Nf8+ 53. Kh5 Re3 54. Kg4 Nd7 55. Bc8 Nf6+ 56. Kh4 Re4?! (Threatens mate with g7-g5, but Tiger was indicating the stronger a5!) 57. Ra6+ Kb5 58. g4 Re7 59. Ra1 a5 60. Rb1+ Kc5 61. Rc1+ Kb4 62. Rb1+ Kc3 63. Ra1 Ra7 64. g5 hxg5+ 65. fxg5 Ne4 66. Ra3+ Kb2 67. Ra4 Nc3 68. Rf4 a4 69. Rf2+ Kc1 (Both see that Black will win an exchange, but this is clearly not enough to win the game) 70. Bf5 a3 71. Rc2+ Kd1 72. Rxc3 a2 73. Rg3 a1R?! (Strange, a1Q is an easy draw. Now Tiger rightly keeps the rooks on the board, even getting some chances) 74. Kh5 Ke2 75. Bg4+ Kd2 76. Rf3 Rc1 77. Kg6 Rc5 78. Rf8 Ke3 79. Rf3+ Ke4 80. Rf8 Rca5 81. h4 Rb5 82. Kh7 Ke3 83. g6 Rb4 84. Rf3+ Kd2 85. Rf7 Ra6 86. Rd7+ Kc3 87. Bf3 Rxh4+ 88. Kxg7 Rh2 89. Bb7 Rb6 90. Bd5 Kd4 91. Kf7 Rf2+ here I adjudicated the game a draw. The most White can get, is Rook and Bishop vs Rook. 1/2-1/2 Game 2 ------ Rebel Century P200 MMX - Chess Tiger 12.0 K6-2 500 (2) Grunfeld 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 d5 4. Nf3 Bg7 5. Qb3 dxc4 6. Qxc4 0-0 7. e4 a6 8. e5 b5 9. Qb3 Nfd7 10. e6 fxe6 11. Be3 Nf6!? (Once Kasparov scored a beautiful win against Svidler. The young Russian played Nb6 here. Afterwards the text move was suggested to be an improvement) 12. a4 bxa4 13. Rxa4 Nd5 14. Bc4 c6 15. h4 Nd7 16. h5 N7b6 17. hxg6 hxg6 18. Ra2 (Improving on a game Piket-Shirov, where White chose to sac an exchange. Still, Ra1! might be the better move) 18. ... Nxc4 19. Qxc4 Nxe3 20. fxe3 Qd6 21. Ne4?! (Here 21 0-0 is the best move. Now Rebel gets into trouble) 21. ... Qd5 22. Ned2 Bd7 23. e4 Qb5 24. b3 Rfc8 25. Rc2 c5!? (A beautiful move, still I don't know if it is best! Black's bishops become quite threatening, but a lot of material disappears from the board) 26. dxc5 Qxc4 27. Rxc4 Bb5 28. Rc1 Bb2 29. Rc2 Ba3 30. Ne5 Bxc5 31. Nxg6 Bf2+ (With this move Tiger's evaluation started to drop move by move, although it was still very positive) 32. Kd1 Kg7 33. Ne5 Bg3 34. Rxc8 Rxc8 35. Rh5 Rc3 36. Rg5+ Kf6 37. Nef3 Bf4 38. e5+ Kf7 39. Rg4 Bh6 40. Ng5+ Kg6!? (Quite shocking, but now the game rapidly runs towards a draw) 41. Nge4+ Kf5 42. Nxc3 Kxg4 43. Nxb5 axb5 44. Nf3 Kg3 45. Nd4 Kxg2 46. Ke2 Kg3 47. Nxe6 Bf4 48. Nd4 Bxe5 49. Nxb5 1/2-1/2 So two draws in the first two games. Clearly, in both cases the program playing Black - and thus having the faster machine - had the advantage, but twice the 'weaker' side fought bravely and managed to draw! Game 3 ------ Chess Tiger 12.0 P200 MMX - Rebel Century K6-2 500 (3) Sicilian 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 e5 6. Ndb5 d6 7. Bg5 a6 8. Na3 b5 9. Nd5 Be7 10. Bxf6 Bxf6 11. c3 0-0 12. Nc2 Bg5 13. a4 bxa4 14. Rxa4 a5 15. Bc4 Rb8 16. b4 (The other try is 16 b3, which might be better) 16. ... Bd7 17. Ra3 Be6 18. Rb3 Kh8 19. 0-0 axb4 20. cxb4 Qd7 21. Qe2 f5 (Such moves are easy for Rebel, because it likes such moves a lot!) 22. exf5 Bxf5 23. Bd3 Be6 24. Be4 Ne7 25. Rd1 Qb5!? (Rebel saw it is going to win a pawn, but Chess Tiger had the better evaluation here! It also saw the loss of a pawn, but indicated a lot of compensation. Tiger appears to be right, quite impressive!) 26. Qxb5 Rxb5 27. Rbd3 Nxd5 28. Bxd5 Bf5 29. Rf3 Bf4 30. Rc3 Bxc2 31. Rxc2 Rxb4 32. Rc6 (This is what Tiger saw in advance. Indeed, it is hard to suggest something strong for Black. Also note the bishops of opposite colour, clearly indicating this game is going to be a draw) 32. ... Rd4!? 33. Rxd4 exd4 34. g3 Bd2 35. Rxd6 Bb4 36. Rd7 (Easier seems Ra6 and Ra8 with an immediate draw. Tiger chooses a different way, by sacrificing the exchange for the dangerous d-pawn) 36. ... d3 37. Be4 d2 38. Kf1 g6 39. Ke2 Rc8 40. f4 Rc1 41. Rxd2 Bxd2 42. Kxd2 Ra1 43. Ke3 Kg7 44. h4 h5 45. f5 Ra3+ 46. Kf4 gxf5 47. Bxf5 And adjudicated as a draw, since after g4 all the Black pawns are exchanged. 1/2-1/2 Again no victory for the side playing the faster machine! Rebel had a nice position, but I was impressed how Tiger got out of it by evaluating the loss of a pawn very deeply. And coming to the conclusion it was not such a big deal. Score 1,5-1,5 after 3 games. Game 4 ------ Rebel Century P200 MMX - Chess Tiger 12.0 K6-2 500 (4) Slav 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. e3 e6 7. Bxc4 Bb4 8. 0-0 Nbd7 9. Qe2 Bg6 10. e4 0-0 11. Bd3 Bh5 12. e5 Nd5 13. Ne4 Be7 14. Ng3 Bg6 15. Bxg6 hxg6 16. Ne4 c5 17. Nc3 N7b6 18. dxc5!? (A brave decision. White's pawn chain doesn't look too nice now, but the White pieces will be more active to compensate for this) 18. ... Nxc3 19. bxc3 Bxc5 20. a5 Nd5 21. c4 Ne7 22. Be3 Bxe3 23. Qxe3 Qc7 24. Rab1 Rfd8 25. Ng5 Nf5 26. Qh3 Nh6 27. Qc3 Nf5 28. Rfd1? (Stubbornly refusing the draw, Tiger was going to accept after Qh3,Nh6 and so on! This decision was narrow, since Rfd1 only got +0,04. Alas, this is better than 0,00.... But in fact Black has the better of it now!) 28. ... Rxd1+ 29. Rxd1 Rd8 30. Rd2 Ne7 31. Rxd8+ Qxd8 32. Qf3 f6 33. exf6 gxf6 34. Ne4 f5 35. Ng3 Nc6! (It's clear that White is in trouble now) 36. a6 Nd4 37. Qe3 bxa6 38. h3 Kf7 39. Ne2 Nc6 40. g4?! a5 41. gxf5? (More and more weakening moves, but I am afraid after other moves Rebel wasn't going to save the game either. In such positions Chess Tiger shows no mercy....) 41. ... exf5 42. Nf4 Qd7 43. Qb3 Nd4 44. Qa3 Qe7! (This does the trick. Black can simply sac the g-pawn) 45. Qd3 Qe4! 46. Qxe4 fxe4 47. Nd5 a4 48. Nc3 a3 49. Kf1 Nc6 50. Na2 a5 51. Nc1 Ke6 52. Ke2 Nb4 53. Nb3 a4 54. Na1 Kd6 55. Kd2 Kc5 56. Kc3 g5 and with this move Tiger has brought Rebel in Zugzwang. So: White resigned. 0-1 The first decisive game, but if Rebel had played 28 Qh3, we would have the fourth draw! Still, Chess Tiger played excellently after Rebel's mistake and the way in which it forced Zugzwang looks very impressive. Game 5 ------ Chess Tiger 12.0 P200 MMX - Rebel Century K6-2 500 (5) Ruy Lopez 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. 0-0 Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 d6 8. c3 0-0 9. h3 Bb7 10. d4 Re8 11. Nbd2 Bf8 12. a3 h6 13. Bc2 Nb8 14. b4 Nbd7 15. Bb2 g6 16. Qb1 Bg7 17. Nb3 Rc8 18. Na5 Ba8 19. d5 Nb6 20. a4 Qd7 21. axb5 axb5 22. Bd3 Nh5 (Up to here both played from the book) 23. Bc1 c6?! (Of course this is the way to free your game, but there are also some disadvantages like giving up the pair of bishops. Probably it was better to wait with this advance) 24. dxc6 Bxc6 25. Nxc6 Qxc6 26. Ra6 Ra8 27. Qa2 Rec8? (A clear mistake. Rebel didn't expect Tiger's next move, after which White has a clear advantage) 28. Qa5! Rxa6 29. Qxa6 Nc4 30. Qxc6 Rxc6 31. Nd2! Rc8 32. Rd1! (Very fine positional play. Tiger's last two moves were not so easy to understand, but they are extremely clever. First, Tiger wants to remove the annoying knight from c4. Second, it is pressing the black d-pawn. Great positional understanding!) 32. .. Nb6 33. Bxb5 Rxc3 34. Nf1 Bf8 35. Bd2 Rc8 36. Be3 Nf4 37. Bxb6?! (This is too early! It was better to keep the two bishops) 37. ... Rb8 38. Bc4 Rxb6 39. b5 Ne6 40. Ne3 Nc7 41. Bd3 Be7 42. Rc1 Bd8 43. Rc6 (White's position looks impressive after this, but for me it was clear that Black is now close to a draw. Since Black will be able to stop the c-pawn easily) 43. ... Rxc6 44. bxc6 Kg7 45. f3 Ne6 46. Nd5 Nc7 47. Kf2 f5! (Watch what happens now: Both sides are offering pawns to each other, still, nowhere the draw is in danger!) 48. Nb6 Ne6 49. Nc8 fxe4 50. Bxe4 Bc7 51. Ne7 Bb6+ 52. Kf1 Kf7 53. Nd5 Ba5 54. Kf2 Nc7 55. Nxc7 Bxc7 56. Ke3 Ke6! 57. Bxg6 d5 58. Be8 Bb6+ 59. Ke2 Kd6 60. h4 Bc7 61. g4 Bd8 62. g5! hxg5 63. h5 g4! 64. fxg4 Bg5 65. Kd3 Kc7 66. Kc3 Bh6 and adjudicated as a draw. Neither Black nor White can make progress from this position. 1/2-1/2 Game 6 ------ Rebel Century P200 MMX - Chess Tiger 12.0 K6-2 500 (6) Ruy Lopez 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. 0-0 Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 d6 8. c3 0-0 9. h3 Nd7 10. d4 Bf6 11. a4 Bb7 12. Na3 exd4 13. cxd4 Re8 14. Bf4 Na5 15. Bc2 b4 16. Nb1 Nf8 17. Nbd2 c5 18. e5 dxe5 19. dxe5 Be7 20. Qe2 Qb6 21. Bd3 Rad8 22. Nc4 Nxc4 23. Bxc4 (And here both openingbooks stopped) 23. ... Qg6 24. Rad1 Ne6 25. Bg3 a5 26. Bd3?! (This is not such a good idea. Tiger evaluated the coming endgame better than Rebel. It looks as if White has a nice position, but in fact Black is better) 26. ... Qh5! 27. Be4 Rxd1 28. Rxd1 Bxe4 29. Qxe4 Ng5 30. Qc6 Nxf3+ 31. gxf3 Kf8 (Well, White seems to be doing fine....!?) 32. Kg2 Qg6! 33. Qe4 Qxe4 34. fxe4 c4 (No, because Black will have a passed pawn soon!) 35. Bf4! (Excellent defensive move, White needs the bishop to stop the pawn) 35. ... c3 36. bxc3 bxc3 37. Bc1 Bb4 38. Rd5 f6!? (A clever idea, but with a distinct disadvantage: Many pawns are exchanged...) 39. exf6 Rxe4 40. Rd8+ Kf7 41. fxg7 Kxg7 42. Rc8 Kf6 43. Kf3 Re1 44. Bh6?! (Better was Be3. In the next moves Rebel has no plan and it seems it is going to lose the game) 44. ... Ra1 45. Rc7?! Rxa4 46. Be3?! h5 47. Rc4 Kf5 48. Bd4 Ra3 49. Ke2 Ke6?! (But now Tiger starts to hesitate) 50. Be3 Rb3 51. Kd3 a4 52. Bc5 c2+? (And this throws away all the remaining winning chances) 53. Kxc2 Bxc5 54. Rxc5 Rxh3 55. Kb2 h4 56. Rc4 a3+ 57. Ka2 Kf5 58. Rb4 Rh1 59. Kxa3 h3 60. Rh4 h2 61. Kb2 Kg5 62. Rh7 Kf4 63. Kc2 Kf3 64. Kb2 Kg2 65. Rg7+ Kxf2 and Rebel has saved the draw, since this is a theoretical drawn position. Rebel shows -0,50 and the drawing line, which is simply checking until the Black king gets away from the h-pawn. Then back with Rh8 and nothing can be done. Therefore: 1/2-1/2 A very hardfought match came to an end. Chess Tiger won by the narrowest margin of 3,5-2,5. All in all a worthy winner, Tiger has shown what it is capable of. Still, I must admit I was very enthousiastic about the way in which Rebel showed fighting spirit in this match. It was no easy win for the Tiger and even on the slower machine Rebel was able to 'hold on'. Two great programs were playing this final and I was very pleased to play this tournament and to write about it. I hope you enjoyed the games! Jeroen Noomen December 30, 1999
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