Round 1, beat a 1537 rated kid as Black.
Round 2, drew Simone as Black (she’s around 1900). Wild finish. I had a queen and pawn and she had rook and 3 pawns. Her clock did not have delay and luckily she was gracious enough to give me the draw as I had about 28 seconds left on my clock. If I hadn’t mismanaged my time so poorly, I would have won, but only because she kept letting me back in, of course.
Two interesting French defenses.
Round 3, lost quickly as White to Joe, French adv. var. (he’s upper 1800’s).
I’ve been going to be at 6 pm lately, but round 3 was right after round 2 because Joe never seems to need a break. From now on I am going to grab dinner before round 3. The problem with round 3 last two times is that I did not really want to play a third game, never got into it mentally, nervous energy was spent. I find that food gives me energy. It’s weird because chess doesn’t really make a person hungry, I don’t think. You don’t feel hungry, but just a little bit of food can wake you up. Driving home, I am very tired, then pick up dinner right by my house. As soon as I eat, presto, I’m instantly woken up and then type all these games in – I do this every time – that is why I should eat dinner before round 3 instead of before bed.
He pushed a pawn to dislodge my knight on f3, and then I realized I needed that defender to defend the d-pawn. Not only that, but I immediately realized he has either a bishop skewer or a knight fork, my choice, and that is basically how the game went. We blitzed from that moment on, the game lasted perhaps 20 minutes after that point, and it was right in the opening.
I realized that I don’t want to play the French Adv as White anymore. I want to play classical Nd2, more open game. Round 3 French Adv is like uggh, that is not a round 3 opening. Anything free and breezy is best bet for round 3, not another constriction BS type opening, round 2 was enough of that, but fun.
Crafty says I should have played 14. Nd1. Weird, that was my plan, Nd1-e3, just like Crafty says, it just seemed like a horrid position to have to play from because there is such a long game ahead with no clear advantage to White, yet Crafty gives White a slight edge anyhow.
My new rating is 1821. Just need to get back to where I am playing round 3 well, and my rating would seemingly have been going up. It’s weird, some people play quite strong in round 3. We watched and analyzed Neal’s round 3 game. He was super-strong and the B player, Chris, was trying to go Mikhail Tal like on him, but it didn’t work, he’s too good for that. It’s odd, Neal seems lose his first round games against weaker kids, but wins his 3rd round games, and have done the opposite. Realistically, this puts too much stress on my first round games because at this rate it’s like I *must* win my 1st round so that I can go to sleep in my 3rd round(??) Just terrible idea.
I like how a couple of the kids withdraw and don’t play round 3, and sometimes only play a single round, while us adults are honor-bound to play on. Some will usually miss a round, like Chris, so he can come in fresher for that round 3. Nevertheless part of me wants as much playing experience as I can get my hands on, even if it means losing.
There was one game where Ryan was playing Joe. Ryan is 1441 or something like that and was and exchange and pawn up in a queen ending. Shoot, I could have won that game in my sleep. You could have given me a lobotomy and I would have won from that position. What does Ryan do? He, for no reason, position is not under pressure, sacs his rook for bishop then asks for a draw! Joe refuses! Shoot, I still could have won that queen ending in my sleep as Ryan cleverly cuts out any chances of perpetual, he should be able to win another pawn with soon to be passer by force, but instead trades pawns and which gives up more queen access to his king as well. It was a draw eventually.
I think I’ll take it for what it is, I was greatful for doing well in the early rounds.
Another thing, I love when my opponent gets all novel in round 1, so that I don’t have to initiate things and can simply respond, even for round 2. But round 3 is the opposite story, it’s difficult psychologically speaking to deal with novelty in round 3, I find. Even when I was mentally-wasted and hanging things, I could still calculate, that part of the brain seems to consistently stay intact, which I find amazing, but I can no longer handle novelty and simple threats which require just a little imagination. If my bed time had been later, I would have done better in that game, but just making it there and playing in any condition is a victory over not playing.
Looking over that round 3 game again with Crafty, I would love to have my position back as White, didn’t realize how perfectly things would have played out. I presume he would play differently next time, though, perhaps not …g5, who knows. A big part of Joe’s strength is keeping a person off-balance, IMHO, which also means for him switching up openings, which also always gives me chances since I feel he is pretty much winging it with whatever I’ve seen him play.