This was Round 1 of the annual Colorado Springs Championship, which has a recorded history starting in 1966 and then every year played since, but I believe Paul said it goes back to 1947. My opponent was a German boy/young man, looked 17 or 18, and spoke with a German accent,
At some point during the game, I remembered that the Germans/Europeans, are known for playing different than Americans, they play this very solid style, and I was thinking that this background must have influenced his style of play.
Well, my American coffee-house style was dropping that pawn on d5. I felt the d5 pawn might go at some point, yet never saw his shot, else I may have played Na4 a move sooner than I did, and possibly even gotten in c4 to defend d5.
I think he felt the game was going to be his, saw that look in his eye, but I was too cagey and battle-hardened – the grizzled veteran – not to know that the real struggle would lie ahead. I knew while playing that any result with an unrated player (his first rated game, if I’m not mistaken) would not affect my rating much, and so really the pressure was on him. I also realized that I could simply drop out of the tournament with no qualms, but the turnout was grand and it’s a nice ambience being with all of our other local players there.