The other day I got my first game against an IM. I had previously played against an FM and NM, and I have played against similar titled players in person a couple times, but I had never played an IM, to my knowledge.
The video below shows my game against the IM, as well as another game in the same opening (Smith-Morra Gambit). I get fun and active positions from this opening, and, even in some of the more annoying defensive lines at Black’s disposal, I feel like I can at least be pretty equal out of the opening (this is a bit different than, for instance, the King’s Gambit, where, if Black plays precisely in the opening, the advantage can often simply be decisive).
One theme that I have noticed in the Smith-Morra is that Black often has to give the pawn back–usually the backward d pawn. If that happens, then material is equal but White is usually more active with the remaining pieces, so he gets an initiative without being down material. The second game shows how that can bear fruit.
I didn’t do a complete analysis of every move here because I just wanted to show my game against the IM and also a bit of the aforementioned theme without getting too bogged down in analysis. Hope you like it and good luck with your chess!