Chess.com - Play. Learn. Share. Online chess community where you can play chess, learn strategies and tactics, read chess news, see book reviews, find rules & tips, get free downloads, and more! http://www.chess.com/ 2007 Chess.com To win at World Open, avoid strong opponentsIn this year's World Open I faced surprisingly weak opposition compared to past years. When I played in the Open section in 2010 and 2011, I faced boatloads of grandmasters (7 and 6 respectively). This time, I didn't play any GMs until round 7! An...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/avoid-strong-opponents-to-win-at-world-openTue, 16 Jul 2013 23:19:41 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/avoid-strong-opponents-to-win-at-world-openEndgame incompetence! When the board is thick with pieces, I usually know what to do; it is simple for me. But as the armies are decimated, I become confused and lost. This pattern has occured in many of my past games, but my performance in the Chicago Open was truly...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/endgame-incompetenceMon, 27 May 2013 21:35:52 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/endgame-incompetenceTwo Winning Habits at US ChampionshipI recently competed in the U.S. Championship from May 3-12. It was held at the St. Louis Chess Club which as usual provided excellent conditions. Congrats to Gata Kamsky for winning; Alejandro Ramirez for tying for 1st in the classical games; Kayd...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/two-winning-habits-at-us-championshipFri, 17 May 2013 02:03:20 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/two-winning-habits-at-us-championshipFinal FourI played for the University of Texas at Dallas at the President's Cup, or Final Four of Chess. The qualifiers were the 4 US teams who finished highest at the Pan-American Intercollegiate tourament. Teams can have up to 6 players, four of whom play...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/final-fourSat, 13 Apr 2013 15:08:01 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/final-fourRecovery from series of bad gamesThe University of Texas at Dallas chess program has one training tournament in each semester. Usually it has been a round robin, but this time it was an open tournament, held on March 9-13. Thirteen Grandmasters were playing. In rounds 1 and 2 I w...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzWed, 20 Mar 2013 01:21:39 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzTexas Masters ends in 4-way tieOn February 15-17 I played at a 5-round tournament called the Texas Masters, which was held at the Dallas Chess club.  I tied for first with 3 other players: GM Cristian Chirila (against whom I won in round 3), IM Darwin Yang (drew in round 4), ...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/ggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggThu, 28 Feb 2013 21:00:56 -0800http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/ggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggWhen the King Leads the Charge Sometimes, when you are trying to checkmate the opposing king, you find that all your queens, bishops, knights, rooks, and pawns aren't enough. Therefore, the king must be enlisted to increase the pressure. In my database I encountered an enterta...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/when-the-king-leads-the-chargeThu, 31 Jan 2013 21:38:05 -0800http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/when-the-king-leads-the-chargeVictory for UTD at Pan-AmsOn December 27-30 I played in the Pan-American Intercollegiate Chess Championship.  I was on the University of Texas at Dallas A team. In each round we played a 4-board match against a team from some other university, or in the case of round 5, o...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/victory-at-pan-amsTue, 01 Jan 2013 21:06:07 -0800http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/victory-at-pan-amsdretch's Training Regimen, or lack thereofOftentimes chessplayers will feel that they hit a wall in their chess development, or simply want to improve faster. So a question that many like to ask to grandmasters is, "What do you do to get better at chess?" There is no secret ingredient for...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/dretchs-training-regiment-or-lack-thereofFri, 30 Nov 2012 02:10:55 -0800http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/dretchs-training-regiment-or-lack-thereofPlaying in US Chess LeagueThis year is my second year playing for the Dallas Destiny team in the US Chess League. It is an online league where the games are played at chess.com this year, or at least the ones I've been involved in so far are. Currently we are first place i...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/playing-in-us-chess-leagueSat, 06 Oct 2012 19:48:13 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/playing-in-us-chess-leagueWorld Junior part 2The last 5 rounds of the World Junior did not go well for me. I did manage to win against Mark Lapidus, who was rated only 2129, in round 9. But after that I couldn't win any more games. In round 10 I lost with white to GM Alexander Ipatov represe...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/world-junior-part-2Wed, 22 Aug 2012 00:25:24 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/world-junior-part-2World JuniorI'm representing the US right now at the World Junior (under 20) Championship in Athens. I have 6/8 so far and there are still 5 rounds to go. Today was the first day that I played against a Grandmaster; in previous rounds I always played a lower-...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/world-juniorSat, 11 Aug 2012 00:37:53 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/world-juniorHow to draw the endgame down a queenRecently I played in the Chicago Open. I did not play many good games, so instead I will show one where I managed to escape with a draw after ruining my position.    The following position is a theoretical draw: As you can see, the defense h...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/how-to-draw-the-endgame-down-a-queenThu, 31 May 2012 19:54:09 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/how-to-draw-the-endgame-down-a-queenSome thoughts on my DeathmatchSince I've finished finals at UTD and gone back to Kansas now, I am finally going to write a blog about the chess.com deathmatch. I played it on April 28 against Eric Hansen, a fellow member of the UTD chess team. After a couple of weeks the games...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/thoughts-on-my-deathmatchTue, 15 May 2012 04:06:00 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/thoughts-on-my-deathmatchGM title completeOver Spring Break I played at the latest UTD (University of Texas at Dallas) invitational tournament in Richardson, Texas. The format was a Scheveningen and you can google the tournament if you want to know more about it. Going into the tournament...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/gm-title-completeSun, 25 Mar 2012 02:24:43 -0700http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/gm-title-completeAn International Tournament?A couple of weeks ago, I participated in a tournament with Grandmasters from 7 federations. Yes, that is counting only the GMs. Why didn't you hear about such a big international event? Well, that's actually just a weekend Swiss in Texas. The tour...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/an-international-tournamentSun, 04 Mar 2012 23:03:57 -0800http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/an-international-tournamentDispersing a storm cloud over my kingI'm going to blog about something today, so I thought it would be interesting to examine an entertaining position from an old game that I played. With White I reached the following position:                           ...http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/aaaTue, 07 Feb 2012 15:33:38 -0800http://www.chess.com/blog/dretch/aaa