Went 2 out of 3, but the pattern continued, beat the two lower-rated players and lost to the higher-rated player. I wonder if Joe has somehow now surpassed me in strength, seems like he has. I need to watch my clock against him as he plays moves that I don’t plan for ahead of time, anyhow.
New Rating: 1825 -> 1833
I know these games are kind of worthless without the analysis. There was a lot of coulda/woulda/shoulda in this game on my part. I saw the best moves that Crafty is rewarding, but my analysis simply didn’t cut through correctly to find out why. For instance e5 instead of Qf3 (somewhat passive), heck even a3 isn’t used so much ‘in theory’. Could have played fxe instead of the immediate retreat-move Ng3. This is my problem, somehow I find the other chances for the other side and it doesn’t looks so great – I’ll have to check out Crafty’s analyses. Anyway, for some reason he decided to throw his queen into a simple trap.
Ah, so we were both tracking with the same moves as Crafty, or the other way around. Anyhow, you can see how I went into time-pressure induced stupidity mode at the end of the game, even saw my blunders as I was making them, kinda like an online game. hehe.
Anyhow, I learned something. #1, I didn’t have to lose this game, but the time-pressure was the major reason I did. If you see a move, don’t verify it for 15 minutes when you knew all along there was nothing better. It should be 15 minutes to find a move perhaps if necessary, hopefully not but, but definitely not wasting time with useless verification if it seems forced anyhow. Make weird moves quickly, same as with normal looking moves! This is what I have learned. Chess is full of weird looking moves so stop getting freaked out over them and this “Oh no, I don’t want to spoil my game with one bad move” mantra that I see so many others there engage in as well, not just me. Apply logic, same as any other move. There are no freak-out moves in chess, only freak-out emotional responses. And I for one can say that I saw a lot of weird moves today.
I avoided NxN early on, knowing that yes it was best, but not wanting to simplify. I did get my chance after his Re1? I could have played Bh4! I guess, but I was so locked into “defense-mode” by then. Actually, we both saw my Qxb2, but I guess I was “worried”. haha. Man I can be dumb sometimes, then he compounded that by playing Bc3, turning his weakness into a strength.
Joe actually was down a rook in his first round game to an upper 1700’s rated Black guy that I hadn’t seen at the club before. Joe won on time, the other guy signed his scoresheet as a loss and with a “happy-face” while he was away, and then left. The guy got there late, and we know how fast Joe moves, and that was it, the other guy didn’t play any more rounds.
My time-pressure strategy had a glaring weakness, that of only looking for “defensive” looking moves in time-pressure. This is very often a recipe for getting mated or losing as the best moves are very often attacking moves and not purely defensive moves.
Another “hole” in my game is the discrepancy between middle-game tactics and the endgame. Tactics are usually about anything but a pawn push on the wing (which is why I miss pawn pushes more often than any other move/tactic), whereas endgames are usually all about promoting the pawns. This change in mindset is like a bridge, good players can transition through it well.
Yes, he did pepper me with draw offers up until the very end. Shyam was a bit better about not offering them too much. It intensifies the pressure as you think you are winning, but could easily lose it. Come home, oh yeah, Crafty has got me up by +8 and all, easy for Crafty to say. The kid was offering me a draw during this point, too! And people were watching, of course. I praised his comeback in this game afterward and said he simply needed to “beef up his endgame a little bit”. His dad seemed more interested in having him pick up the pieces and getting out of there than hearing anything positive that I might have to say. Yeah, who needs me when you’ve got Fritz, right?. hehe. Quite a few kids stuck around to play round 3 this time.
Next week is the G/60 tournament that I don’t play in, besides, I could better use it as study time – I will play Wednesday night, though. I thank God that I am able to continue beating these lower-rateds (usually kids), but I really should be playing more quickly/confidently against higher-rated players.
The funny thing is these “lower-rateds” take up a lot of time, even these kids, they are taking most of their time up, too! But the A players, it’s like they are playing G/30. it’s 30/90 and I played round 2 first 14 moves in 34 minutes, but then, it’s in the early middlegame that I suddenly let myself get bogged down in time, and I do it frivolously as I see the move I want to play usually right away, a shame.