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Hi guys, I got back from the Dublin weekender yesterday and got a bad 2/5. The first game I played decent enough but completely blundered a drawn endgame. The second one I won without too much difficulty and the third I played horrible in and completely underestimated my opponents attack. The fourth I won nicely, and the fifth I completely blundered a knight needlessly and gave up a better position.
Thanks all, I'd really appreciate your thoughts and analysis.
I feel for you in your loss in the first game. You handled nearly all the game well. Your development was sound and in the middlegame you took the initiative when White gave it to you.
I am a bit more dogmatic than you. I would never have played 18 ... Kd7 because I'm more timid. It shows how much confidence you have that you eschewed castling long and marching your king onto a half-open file with a rook staring at you.
If I were playing White, I'd have tried to pile up on the Benoni d6 pawn, but that shows my lack of imagination.
Regarding time trouble blunders, even World Champions do it. Others will suggest methods to budget your time more carefully, but only you can know if you needed to spend that time to hold a position or dominate it. One thing to watch out for though is a drop in your blood sugar, so keep some energy drinks (not caffeine) like Gatorade and something like a Powerbar or some dried fruit and trail mix.
Yeah, I was pretty pissed after I blundered that pawn!
Yeah, I think Kd7 was sound, but I get your point on it. It was slightly dangerous!
Yes, the d6 pawn is usually a seriously weak pawn in these variations, but I exchanged the queens so I could deal with the pressure far easier. I suppose some energy food would help aswell :D Thanks Ken
First game: 13...g6? =weak a1-h8 diagonal.
Great to see you analysing your games and that is one way for you to make big improvements in your play.
Game 1: Find out what black should do after Nxd5 it looks like you got a good position out of the opening but could it have been better? Nxd5 looks correct but I think Nc6, Be7 and BF6 looks like white has a big problem with his D4 square. On Move 35 its looks to me like you have a dream position white has very few moves and your Rook and Knight work much better together than Whites Rook and Bishop and you can slowly improve your position.
Game 2: You played really well, im sure you could have been a bit more accurate but overall I couldnt see any clear ways for improvement.
Game 3: I much prefer Be3 after Qxe5, Black has some serious problem with his D pawn and the more pieces that get swapped off the better the position will be for you. I know you were probably afraid of Ng4 but just Qd4 seems to be much better for you.
Game 4: You mentioned the line in your notes but just BxF4 is just winning for white, I dont play the french myself but I dont like your Qb6 and Bb4+ idea. I would go over some games by GM's and how they handle the exchange French and it will give you some ideas.
Game 5: I think you got the best opening out of any the games you played and I wouldnt be able to improve whites play. I think you have the right instincts to want to play d5 which is the right idea but as you know yourself there was no need to rush into playing it. I would say the hard part for players tho is to understand that a move like d5 will have to played to make progress.
I think overall your games show you are alot stronger than your rating sugests and for you to keep up analysing your games as its clearly working. I would also have a look at the openings in all your games even the games you won to know where your play can be improved so that next time you come up against them you will be better prepared, you will also be able to save time as you will know the plans involved.
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