Late Collapse

Round 3

I probably need a story to explain this game, because it borders on the inexplicable. I missed a very easy win with 25..Qg1+ Ke2, then ..Qxg2+ and ..Qxf3+. In chess terms, I missed this same tactical pattern, turning an easy win into a loss again Expert Josh D.

Before the game, I didn’t feel like playing, it wasn’t just the long-work week with the hour of OT (which is a lot when you are working a call-center job in tech support), but Alex called me at 2:30 until 6am talking about his court-sentencing. Well, I didn’t even think about it till later, but I didn’t eat a bite of food since before he called my until 11pm, after the game. I also went jogging (and don’t exercise during the week – no time/motivation).

So looking back on it now, I just physically crapped out during my winning position. I looked at sacs for 7 minutes and did not see the ..Qg1-g2+. It’s like I was just waiting for something to happen, the answer to come to me, and it never came. Instead I just realized that I would need to move or lose on time.

Then, in extreme time-pressure, I did not realize that …Kh8 was possible until after I gave my bishop up for nothing. In fact, it’s completely winning for Black. The nervous exhaustion was so great that I did not play …Kh8 when I was in check, but played the illegal ..Qe7 and lost on time. I felt okay during the game, if not overly nervous, but then my nervous energy ran out and I guess the exhaustion of the week caught up to me at an inappropriate moment. I hadn’t recovered from the week, and had a feeling this might happen, but was still stunned that it had. I also studied some boring, non-tactical Karpov game before playing, which I regretted because I didn’t have normal energy even after taking a B multi-vitamin, I just sort of had some nervous energy at the beginning without anything really substantial behind it.

I’ve also had a gum infection the last few days, and as Dr. Tartakover said, he’s never beaten a healthy opponent. hehe.

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3 thoughts on “Late Collapse

  1. Yeah, too bad, you had a great game and great attack going.
    One advice – never study or play online much before the game.
    The best is not to do any chess at the night before/at the day of the game except for some opening preparation if you know what opponent could be playing.

  2. I played tonight with a~1700 rated guy. It was equal, but in the end I found a little combo, that actually gave me a won bishop endgame. Funny thing is, I missed a win several times and ended up with a draw. I had about 4 minutes left vs. his ~15, so it played a role too.

  3. Thanks for the comments, RollingPawns! 🙂

    I played on Thursday, made the same same tactical blunder in the same line that I played against Rhett with before, as White. I’ve come to realize that a weakness in one’s game, before it is eradicated, is almost a sure-fire thing to repeat itself.

    Higher-rated players have the ability to introduce losing continuations to lower-rated players. It’s not that their chess is better, per se, it’s that they know how to act wounded and try to provoke you into attacking them prematurely.

    But, the lower-rated player has to attack, so it all comes down to carefulness in attack for the lower-rated player. Even if you are going to sac the house, it must be done with utmost care. It also made me realize the importance of paying particular attention to one’s opponent’s development. I play better slow-chess because a good move is often the absence of a bad move.

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