DeJavu

I’ll post the game later, as I think I am going to write down my analysis with pencil and paper first, particularly for later in the game where I started messing up.

I played a Scotch Game as White against Mark. Mark is older than I am, and I thought this sort of thing was beneath him, but here we go again. With 7 seconds on my clock and 3 seconds on his, we both stopped pressing the clock. My time was running down but were blitzing so fast that I didn’t even bother worrying about it, thinking Mark was “cool” for some reason. So we got down to my 2 seconds. I have Kg4, he has g5 pawn and Kg1, and he is going to play Kg2 and I Kxg5 draw. So, rather than wait for him to move after my move (this is silly, right?) I stick out my hand with 2 seconds left on my clock and offer him a draw, certain that this is without a doubt the end of the game, just a gentlemanly gesture. He refuses my draw and then claims a win on time because he has “mating material.” At first Dean, the TD, sides with me, but then Mark makes him go get the rule book and Dean is going to side with Mark, but I basically talked Mark into giving me a draw. Meanwhile, one kid’s parent is like “You lost on time, the rules say” sort of thing. Unbelievable.

Anyway, we went over for pie afterward at the Village Inn across the street, spent a couple hours with Paul and Mark going over both our games, we both enjoyed the game and going over it, so I can only claim being perplexed on what the big deal was, although I can see how it is now OTB. Mark was upset that he could have won $7 for 3-0, there was a four way second place tie for 3-0 because all we were doing was beating the kids and then getting in 1 or 2 decent games. That is what happens with one Open Section and a bunch of low-rateds.

Heck, I have lost work for 2 days and counting, Mark has had people who have been affected by the fire here in Colorado Springs. I can’t believe how petty a game of chess can be, over $7 and some odd rating points (he was worried that he would lose rating points for drawing me, because his rating is slightly higher now by a few points or so). What is the chess world coming to?

Anyway, I missed a couple of wins and one loss in the game. I made an inexplicable blunder with the 7 seconds on my clock that cost me like 5 tempos or I would have simply won, and on another move he made a BS move, but I defended instead of making the winning move, and he said he would have resigned had I played it. It was a fun, interesting game, just a weird end (he said he was trying to win on time, but that he didn’t even notice that he wasn’t pressing his clock, and said he knew he had no winning chances but the rules state ‘mating material’ wins, wtf?). Anyway, for those of you who want to know what “real tournament chess” is like, this is what you too can expect.

It turned out that he was upset that I had rejected his draw offer when he was “two pawns up”. In reality, I had just won one of those pawns back, he had 0:24, and I had like 6:24 when he offered the draw (correction: I must must have had more like 3 and a half minutes because I had obviously stopped keeping score by this point), and the only reason I declined it was because I saw that I was winning his other pawn as well, with a winning position.

BTW, I didn’t drop the two pawns. I purposely sacked them for activity because I figured that I would win his two pawns, which was the case. I really should have won this game. Also, I was 34 rating points higher than him before this game. I can’t believe how petty that chessplayers can be. They all would have claimed a win on time. Mark said “Isn’t that what you would have done?” and I said absolute not, or something similar. He said he will claim a win on time next time, so I guess I should too if I am playing Anthea or Mark or Paul or the Hermans, cause now I know that they would do that to me. Heck, they’ve already all won on time against me, anyway.

Here is the game: Round 4. It is only accurate for 18 moves, and after that it is simply wrong, but it gives an idea of how I got to a position where on move 46 I play 46.Rb6?? which could only make sense given that I was blitzing (too fast) with my 7 seconds to his 3. I had seen that I was promoting that pawn, but then wanted to save a tempo by checking him first?? So after I checked him I could not get my rook behind my pawn. Also, my king was on c5, and had to hand-promote that pawn with the king, recapturing his sacked rook on a8. I was about two tempos short of winning, but lost around 5 tempos with making my king promote the a-pawn. He had the g and h pawns, which were still back on the 6th rank, and I had no pawns left.

I am somewhat pleased that I actually drew a game, against anybody for any reason really. I haven’t drawn a game in months and back when I was on my last ratings roll, those potential losses were either draws or wins in time-pressure. But now I am not the same in time-pressure, I don’t care or give it as much emphasis as to how I can sucker my opponent while blitzing. I try to simply ration out my time better.

They were saying after the game that I was winning with 17.cxb7, and in the past I probably would have played it, but lately I have switched over to the “Rolf Wetzell” model of budgeting my time in time-pressure rather than try to spend a lot of clock-time calculating a line in complexities. For example, I could have played 17.cxb7 Rb8, 18.Qd7? (which I didn’t see), and have only been up .8, because 18.Nf3 is the correct follow-up. After Qd7, the position would have been very concrete and complex – really, I should have done so because of _his_ time-pressure, but I was ignoring that. My move may be dropping a piece, but I did not see this as I was not spending enough time on the move to see it, and he didn’t see it either!

It was interesting analysing with Paul Anderson because it made me realise not that he will necessarily calculate better than I, but that he has more chess common-sense than I do. I will try to analyse a position exactly, but he will keep the better endgame in hand, knows how to keep his options open, and not try to press too soon like I often do or have done.

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13 thoughts on “DeJavu

  1. Chess makes people do crazy things. Or maybe that’s just the kind of people that play the game seriously? Regardless, make sure you go straight to the TD if you opponent isn’t hitting his clock and you’ll at least get an added 2 minutes to your clock. People need to follow the rules!

  2. Thanks, Moth! 🙂

    The TD and a few other people were watching the last half-minute of this game. All of this happened right in front of the TD, for example, and I claimed that we were both not pressing the clock and that I had 2 seconds when offering the draw, and he said yes I had 2 seconds, so he saw it as well. I can’t think of a crazier outcome. I should have requested 1 or 2 minutes be added, good point!

    He was upset that his Dad had decided to “Pre-evacuate his house” (ie they weren’t told to by anybody). I just lost 3 days of work and need to file for unemployment tomorrow. Give me a break, how selfish, only thinking about himself. He said “What if this were the US Open?” US Open isn’t played for $7 at G/90 at Panera Bread.

    Mark was saying “It’s blitz-move rules now because we are blitzing.” and Paul was agreeing with him. hehe. It’s not a blitz game, in blitz you can capture the king if they miss a check. You are right, Moth, chess makes them go crayyzzyy. 😀

  3. Yeah those guys sound like a bunch of cockroaches. That guy has no right to be a TD if he didn’t award you the minutes right away when you made the claim that he wasn’t hitting his clock (he is compelled to make the adjustment). Believe me we are all not like that guy you played that day; I’d have gladly accepted the draw with both players under 10 secs in a drawn game with zero hesitation. Maybe it’s time to travel out a little bit in search of a different playing scene (I don’t know where you’re from but I’ve done this myself and the extra 45 minutes of driving was WELL worth it). Hang in there man.

  4. Thanks! It’s nice to hear that from another player, and I think I needed to hear that from somebody. 😉

    I’ve played maybe 12 rated games with Mark before, we’ve talked after games for long periods of times, and analyzed our games together before, but I guess you never know someone’s true colors until they are put to a test. It was like an “Et tu, Brutus?” moment for me when he claimed the win.

    It was a good thing I got that draw because that was my only chess result for this week (no, I cannot get enough games in to overcome this routine G/90 drama). I had a mandatory meeting for my work tonight at 6pm, hundreds of us who are now without work were there. The facility where I work is still shut down due to the fires.

  5. Hey LinuxGuy!

    For now, screw chess!

    What is important is to be safe out there! I have some friends in Colorado and it is pretty scary out there right now!

  6. TommyG, thanks for stopping by!! 🙂

    When will you put your blog back up? 😉

    The fire came down the tall hill, it’s a sheer slope, and the firefighters put it out right in front of our building (the news incorrectly reported that our (brick) building had burned down, and I can’t see that ever happening). It’s kind of like a mountain though, mountain goats are at the top and I can’t even see them from the parking lot.

    1100 of us from this site have not been working since last Saturday. One person was saying how she had to get off the phone with the customer, as they were evacuating the building. Hundreds of us met downtown this evening, some had had their houses burned down. I’ll be filing for temporary unemployment tomorrow, but I’m okay since I live in Fountain, which is like the south end of CO Springs.

    Just got the call. I am going to work tomorrow in Denver at the corporate facility there. I am priority because I work in tech support. 😉

  7. I am glad you are OK and even will continue to work.
    I am amazed how people can use the time that you spent to stick out your hand with a draw offer to win on time with practically bare kings, unbelievable.
    I am glad people in our club are better.
    I got my mojo back, won against almost 1500, played pretty well except one moment. Will try to post tomorrow.

  8. I am glad that you won your game, RollingPawns. 🙂

    When playing 1490, you know you more or less have to win, and should win, and probably play a lot more mistake-free chess.

    When playing up or equal strength, it’s easy to over-respect your opponent and simply “react” to whatever they throw at you. I didn’t challenge Mark’s moves because he had spent so much time on them, but then later admitted that they were blunders and he was trying to confound me, and crossing his fingers. Whereas I could have thrown him sharp moves just to make him lose on time, but didn’t because I thought we were both trying to respect the game, not just go for a cheap win. Boy was I wrong.

    I am glad you are sticking with it, that is great to see. 🙂

    My friend Alex is going to stay with me for a month, so we will play both on Wednesday and Thursday. I wish there were another club, and wouldn’t mind taking a month off from chess either, but I know my buddy Alex will get me all pumped up for the games. 😉 They are all trying to beat me on time, even the guy with 3 seconds on his clock, it’s all so pathetic but this is what I am stuck with, “timed” chess.

  9. Linux don’t listen to anything that Tommyg character says: he is insane. Everyone knows that in times of crises your elo strength increases by 200 so rake in as many wins as you can :P. Kidding aside…

    Glad you were able to keep working at this other facility. Nothing is more difficult then playing chess WHILE thinking about a hundred other things. I think if I were you I’d try to set my goal to have the game done or in such a technically won position that you could blitz it out with ZERO problems with like 15 minutes on your clock to create some luft for your situation. Do you play blitz some to work on your weakness? (This latter case if an exception).

    I heard somewhere that the great Fischer had a problem with blitzing out moves and his mentor/friend Jack Collins bought him a special clock from Germany that forced him to move in 5 seconds or his time would run out to build up his trust in his own moves etc. Not saying this is the way to play good chess but I think we’re only as good as our biggest weakness…

    Remember this quote by Korchnoi for your situation w/ other players: “If Bobby were in a contest with other players for the nicest guy he’d finish out of the money”. Hope this doesn’t make you want to be like them, but you have to protect yourself from these dirty tactics w/ TD assistance if needed.

    Tim

  10. Tim, Thanks for your concerns and suggestions! 🙂

    I won’t become like them in this situation (unless they owe me one! Like Daniel H. or Anthea C., and she owes me big-time!)

    It’s not even about filing a complaint to the TD either, the real answer I’ve come to the conclusion is to understand that G/90 is more or less “scumbag chess”. Accept and embrace it.

    What is “Scumbag chess”, you ask yourself, and how can I play this brand of new chess??

    It’s simple, the goal of “scumbag chess” is to give your opponents tough problems to solve, and ONLY spend your own clock time and energy on the solution of a problem that requires solving.

    For example, in my last game, where my opponent played …Re8, threatening my e4 pawn, I spent an incredibly long period of time looking at continuations which didn’t matter. To be honest, I believe this was my longest think ever in a non 40/2 time-control game. I spent 42 minutes on this move before playing the response Re1, which is a sham pawn-sac, but there are many different ways to try and refute his play should he take the e4 pawn (many tactics, etc). Really, I didn’t spent long on Re1 so much other moves which don’t lead to anything definite (nothing in fact, since he understood that after Nd4xNc6, that dxNc6! solves his positional problems, whereas I was looking at many tactical variations after bxNc6? which he never even would have played!).

    Whereas if I had played Re1 right away which is the “Go ahead, Make my day!” move, in “Dirty Harry” parlance. I don’t have to do jack, unless he takes my pawn. In fact, he was now set for a long think to look at why he can’t capture this pawn, whereas I can now spend his clock-time looking at all of the other moves he can make on the board, and only look at the pawn recapture if he actually takes the pawn!

    Later in the game, all tactics and calculation aside, I am simply winning pawns if nothing else by playing cxb7, because even if I sac that pawn on my next move, for example, then he still has to lose a tempo taking that pawn back in the very least. But aside from this, it follows the “scumbag chess” principle of giving your opponent something sharp to calculate (accurately) on their clock! Now you are calculating the same thing as they are, but on their time! hehe.

    You can’t say I haven’t learned anything from my opponents in all of this, because this is exactly what they have been doing to me, even Mark, and for some reason I thought that was beneath his character to make bad moves just to confuse me on my clock.

    Not only is this a clock-issue, but just as importantly it is very difficult to come back, energy-wise, after a long-think on one’s own clock. One MDLM principle was essentially to have “no long thinks” unless the position required it, and that should probably read “demanded” it, it being a tactical solution.

    Thanks for your and TommyG’s concern about my off-board situation! I wish I could use this as an excuse, and this situation probably did make me a softer opponent because I was not as concerned about winning my chess game, and I certainly wasn’t playing “scumbag chess” which is the principle one should be following to improve their G/90 results.” haha

    Actually, this could be renamed something nicer than what I called it.

  11. Hehe okay honestly though, G/90 is a TON of time. I find myself getting bored during a G/60 so maybe correspondence chess would be better suited for you? If anyone thinks 45 minutes for one single move in ANY time control you better believe I’m going to attack them on the clock. Just pace yourself more evenly and people won’t try to clock you to death. I mean half of your time for even just one pawn? Not worth it to me. I don’t think of it as scum-baggy or anything as you have the right to use your time however you like and your opponent has his right but if you try harder to stay about even with him on the clock I think you’ll find they try to blitz you less. Maybe?

  12. I don’t think it’s a ton of time. It’s maybe enough time to play defensive chess, if you chose too focus on defense, but I don’t believe it’s enough time to focus on both good defense and offense, really need at least a 2 hr game or more for that.

    I’ve found out that you can’t play faster, but you can play differently, and that’s the only way to play faster on the clock. Basically, you have to inject a lot of rationalizations into a game where the great players of the past actually took a lot of time to come up with their wicked sacs. Far more time than they would have been able to do it with at G/90. As in, they do a sac that works because there is a mate in 5 in one sideline, etc. It takes time to willfully calculate a mate in 5, you don’t just see it like a deer running out into the middle of the road. “Oh, look, it’s a mate in 5!” That’s popular misconception. One has to look hard for that mate in 5 in a sideline where it can be avoided (where the main line justifies the sac).

  13. If You go to minute 22, it shows you exactly what I’ve been saying here:

    Chris (1900 player) says that he likes to give his opponent choices (ie, give them a tough puzzle to solve, and then work it out on their clock), but in doing so he usually picks the wrong move. Earlier, he also says that he should have castled, but didn’t want to work out that he wasn’t getting mated, and thus grab some of the center first (ie, challenge their opponent to find the crusher). This is exactly what I am talking about, a sizeable component of their chess rating being due to the process I termed above.

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