I played a new opponent as White in this game, but being the first round I was set up with my lowest-rated opponent ever. He must be pairing based on us having never played because there were a gaggle of people rated higher than me in this tournament.
The good news is that I had 59 minutes still on my clock at the end of the game, but still, my longest move was in finding that piece-winning combination early on, and Alex said he saw it long before I did. IOW, I was still taking too long.
Alex and Mark were matched up again, but this time Alex had an advantage with Mark down to 20 seconds on his clock, and also only a pair of pawns, queen and a pair of pieces were off the board. The result? Mark wins with 12 seconds left with nothing on the board besides bare kings, and Mark had queen and four pawns to mate with. Why do I even bother bother to watch(?)
Don’t really know whether or not I’ll play any more rounds Thursdays of this month, but if I do there are plenty of 1700’s and above playing.