Wednesday Final Round

Played Anthea again as White.

She saw that she had good endgame chances but agreed to draw out of respect for my endgame abilities.

She is really kicking my butt at this G/90, though. I see some chances, but it’s G/90 so I pass, but I still get in time-trouble for only having made 23 moves, it’s like playing in “no-man’s land” for me. I guess her best moves, but then she plays them quickly, which is even worse.

I took clear-first, but could just as easily have lost that game.

…Nc3 should have lost the game, according to Crafty. I figured the knight was potentially out of play, but simply didn’t find the resources that White had in the 3 minutes I spent on it. The opening, I could have blitzed through, …Nc3 was the first critical move of the game and could have just as well been the last. I was worried that maybe ..h5 would kick my queen from defending d4 before I had a chance to play BxNf5.

Okay, …h5 does save Black, I was actually right, avoiding Crafty’s awesome killer lines for White. Not only that, but I found a resource a few moves later when Crafty thought White had a big advantage still. That’s odd. Looks even, too weird. I simply missed the fact that it’s okay to take on h5 and surrender the d4 pawn, would have given me a sure slight edge rather than the sure edge that Black got in the game. So perhaps the truth was in the middle.

This got even weirder. Crafty had a big idea earlier in the game, trade for the Bd5, then play b3 followed by Ba3. Well, I diffused that advantage on behalf of Black. I’m pretty sure that Fritz is much stronger, but this is the trouble I sometimes have with dropping suggestions from engines, sometimes they don’t work. It does seem like Fritz is a lot stronger though.

I think all of this ties in to why some people can play much faster than I, based on intuition. They don’t rely on computer-training and second-guess themselves as much.


8 thoughts on “Wednesday Final Round

  1. Fritz found that instead of 18… Nc3, giving you ~0.4 , Black could play 18… f6 with ~0.65 advantage. 19… Qd5 was better than 19… Nf5 and 20. Bxc3 was stronger than 20. Bxf5 and even 22. Bxc3 better then Be3, though not that strong already. Yes, it was a critical moment and 3 minutes is definitely not enough to calculate this and you can’t play this on intuition. Maybe you should play some blitz to play 90/G faster?

  2. I play 15/0 on FICS and do play some blitz, but here I only had 9 minutes left at the end of the game, she had nearly an hour. My biggest problem is that I shouldn’t be using time early on. There were zero threats against me all game long until the end, it was merely me looking to take advantage of my opponent’s play. Since my opponent is not making mistakes early, it was foolish to spend so much time looking for an advantage.

    Rollingpawns, thanks for these suggestions and I will look at them! It was the 17 to 14 minute mark that I mulled over …Nc3, but the problem is that I am not calmly looking at the position when I look over at the cloack and see how much time is left. A big reason to stay out of time-trouble is how it affects one mentally, it’s too easy to play subjectively in time-pressure and it’s a lot harder to concentrate versus looking at the same thing over and over again!

  3. “17 to 14 minute mark” you should be in the deep endgame, of course you can’t quietly calculate middlegame position in this time frame. Try to have some milestones, like Botvinnik rule ( 20% time on first 15 moves, and/or some time after 30 moves or whatever.

  4. Rollingpawns, yeah the opening was nothing to speak of. Move …Nc3 was almost like the beginning of the real game. I could think afterwards that she played the opening well and look for possible flaws, but it’s almost meaningless to during the game.

    I’ll have to approach the opening more like a 15/0 game on FICS. For whatever reason, my OTB play is much slower, possibly more intimidating to play a live person versus an internet handle. I seem to spend a lot of time just getting my head into the game or something. On the internet, people seem to drop things quicker, but OTB even much weaker players can go a long time without a game-losing blunder.

    When I play slow, it seems to only encourage the other person to sit tight and wait for their chances later once I am low on time. Not consciously, but subconsciously it seems to. Most of my opponents have been playing G/90 longer than I and have a feel for how it should go. In fact, many of them are successful G/45 players.

  5. Maybe you should do some warm-up before the game. I usually try to play 2-3 blitz games before going to the club, not thinking about the result, but just wanting to “feel the board”. In gymnastics it’s a regular thing, you don’t do serious elements before stretching , running, jumping, etc. Think about it.

  6. RollingPawns, it’s true. I was even trying to look at the board before tonight’s game, just so that I wouldn’t spend time familiarizing myself with it. Unfortunately, that in itself didn’t turn out to be my main problem.

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