Ouch!!! I just got done losing one of the most painful, frustrating games of my life! By losing this last round (round 4) to IM Joel Banawa, I effectively killed my chances for first place in this year's ACE Chess Arizona State Championship, and left myself feeling empty inside in the process ... Before we get to that, here is my draw with IM Mackenzie Molner from last night:
Now, as I was saying: I played like an idiot this round! First, I didn't play the opening I had planned on before hand (and though I am not claiming any great or deep preparation, it still doesn't make sense to change your approach at the last second... it NEVER works out and I know that from experience, but I did it anyway
Secondly, even after getting a good position out of the opening I did choose to play, I played the horrific 19...Bd5, subsequently giving my opponent everything he wanted/needed on the queenside (c-file) and placing myself in a clearly worse position (borderline losing) for the rest of the game. Several moves there (all which I considered) are good for black: 19...f6, 19...Bxc4, 19...Rad8 to name a few.
Seriously, that ONE move -- combined with excellent technique from my opponent -- was enough for me to never have any chances in this game. When you go over the game below, you will feel my frustration in a position with almost no moves (literally, I was resorted to shuffling my pieces while my opponent debated different ways to end me).
So, here it is:
Anyway, I'd like to say I feel better about things after this little rant, but I don't... At least not right now.
OK, I need to eat something before my final game against International Master Mark Ginsburg... Nothing like a little Gordon Lightfoot playing in the background as I write this to make me feel better
Thanks for listening team, and wish me luck in the last round!!!