x
Chess - Play & Learn

Chess.com

FREE - In Google Play

FREE - in Win Phone Store

VIEW
Path To Chess Prosperity #6 PART 2: 10/28/2017 Tournament Analysis

Path To Chess Prosperity #6 PART 2: 10/28/2017 Tournament Analysis

EOGuel
Nov 11, 2017, 9:04 PM 10

Hello, everyone!

Two weeks ago, I played in a tournament in my hometown, Waco Texas. I was overall disappointed with my play, missing key ideas and losing my second game by a fatal one-move blunder, though, most can't claim a disappointing performance starting 0-2 against 2187 and 1957 rated players respectively. I was able to win my final game against a new unrated player who I would estimate to be roughly 1200-1300 strength. 

The tournament in itself had fourteen players, a few from out of town. I was surprised to be paired on board 1 against Rudy Tia (2187). Mr. Tia is an accomplished player with his share of career highlights:

  • Longtime USCF expert (2000+), and currently 10 points shy of the NM title (he has never crossed that barrier).
  • Fresh off winning clear first place in the 2017 Texas Armed Forces Championship (Rudy is an Army Retiree) with 4/4 points. He also won the tournament in 2004 (I think).
  • At the time, he was the #100 ranked player in the state of Texas. 
  • Holds a 2-0 record against Daniel Guel and is featured on a chess.com blog! 

That's right. I have played Rudy one other time in a local tournament about a year ago which he won as well. I was clearly not the favorite to win this game, though I knew it was important to not hold that mentality throughout the game. I thought I played well, though after he sacrificed his Rook on my Kingside (which I defended), I began to make some vacuous moves which lead to my passivity and eventually downfall:

Some notes:
  • In the opening (or any position for that matter), if your opponent clearly has a good move (whether he plays it or not), look for a way to abolish that plan while improving your own position (like playing e3 to prevent f4).
  • It is OK to defend aggressive shots (like Rxg2). However, when you do so, avoid "defending and playing passively". When you are defending, look for the lights-out counterattack move (like f4 instead of Re2).
  • Sometimes, you have to take that risk and calculate it through! (like Nxh6).

null

After the game, I felt like I needed some alone time with my Teddy Bear. However, that had to wait as I needed to move on to the next round!

The game was extremely emotionally hard to swallow, as I really should have won (and would have momentarily spoiled his chances for an NM title). But, I pretty much had to forget that loss (until I went home and analyzed the games). After our lunch break subsequent to the first round, I checked the pairings and was surprised to see myself paired with Jason Howell (1957). Jason is the Waco-City Champion and by far the highest rated player in the local area.

Jason had just disappointed with a 1st round draw against 1703, while I just played a great game against 2187. You would think I had the psychological advantage in our matchup, right? Wrong? Maybe?...

Some notes:
  • As I stressed earlier, look for aggressive punishing moves rather than passive trading moves (like d5 instead of Nd2).
  • Similar to the previous point, look for progressive moves rather than back-and-forth moves (like b4 instead of Nf3).
  • Lastly, TACTICS, TACTICS, and TACTICS!!! We all know to look for checks, captures, and threats. If I had done so, I would have played Qc6 instead of the horrendous Qe4(??) and would have likely drawn the game.

I am sorry that I don't really have time to showcase my last game (win against an unrated player), as I want to get this posted soon, and I spent much more time on my higher rated opponents (however, my last opponent played tough, and I may add that game later). While the results were dissapointing, it was fun to learn from the higher rated players. It is clear that I need to play less passively if I want to improve my game.

On my last note, I went 4/4 this week in tactics. Slower than I wanted, however, still perfect in that area. 

Have a good day!

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

P.S. Want to know how us top bloggers do it? Please join our group, the Blogosphere, lead by top bloggers and welcome to fans and other bloggers alike!

Online Now