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I have been picking up a very nasty trend in my play. Whenever I am up in material I often end up losing the game. In my self-analysis I could only conclude the following:
It has gotten to a point now where I am almost fearful of being up in material. I am playing with confidence against stronger opposition, but this does not help anything if I keep losing winning positions.Any advice, thoughts, comments would really be appreciated.Here are a few examples:
Wow! Those are some tough losses, theunsjb.
looks like it doesn't have as much to do with psychology as much as you don't have a sense of danger and or miss tactical shots. Keep working on the tactics trainer
I checked your tactics trainer history and you have only done 63 problems. As you have pointed out, you do well right up to the point where a critical position arises in your game. The nice thing about the Tactics Trainer is that most of the problems presented are of critical positions. So why not make tactics training an integral part of your preparation? Your board vision will improve and if there is a psychological component to your difficulty, then facing difficult positions over and over again will surely help. You have unlimited use of the TT; take advantage of it.
Wow! Those are some tough losses, theunsib.
You telling me trysts! With the last one (yesterday) I seriously felt like running into a wall! To rub even more salt into the wound, these are all turn-based games! Honestly, I think I am just making moves too quickly. I have all the time in the world. I just don't use it like I should. The only person punishing me is myself I'm afraid.
Thanks baddongo. I recently reset my tactics trainer history as I was getting many repeat problems. But I am not spending enough time on it for sure! erikido23 also points out the same thing I'm afraid.
I lost a game the same way, to a lower ranked opponent, whom I dominated throught the opening and the most of the middle game. I had superior "material" and "position", but I compromised my position trying too hard to force mate.
Aside from the occassional over confidence, that causes you to miss a sequence, allowing your opponent to win, inspite of your superior material, there is only one thing that stands out to me.
I thought you should focus on what you hadn't yet. If you are "materialistic" in your approach to your play, with great tactics, unless you maintain good position, you can still lose to an inferior army.
Study a good positional GM (Karpov, Bogoljubow) and watch how they turn even position into superior position by either the threat of a sudden material advantage or both. This newly acquired superior position leads into a material advantage and then a win.
In other words, don't abandon your citadel trying to subdue the opposing army in the open. If the opposing army hasn't abandoned their fortress, their reinforcements for their army, is most likely going to be superior. You might be good enough at calculating around this road block, against weaker players, but against the strong...
Looks like after you make one mistake you get frustrated/confused and make an additional mistake. If you find you've blundered, calm down and take a deep breath :) forget the position you could have had, and focus in on this new position to find the best move you can.
Excellent advice! Thanks wafflemaster!
Happens to everyone.
Two words: Tactics Trainer
(or maybe CT-ART. Google it.)
one advice that helped me a lot, if you are up in material, try to simplify the game by exchanging pieces, but do not give up good placed pieces to eliminate bad ones, for example a trapped bishop, knight on the side vs a well placed bishop of yours..the simpler it gets the less is your chance to blunder a piece away (my opinion)
It's all about playing as if the previous moves never occured.
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