U1800 Tales from the World Open, Pt II
(See part one here)
It was time for the third game, and I needed to shift gears for the longer time controls. The four- and five-day schedules had merged, and it was causing no end of troubles for the organizers trying to get the pairings straight. We were delayed a good 30 minutes, which would have been nice to know in advance. I thought I had barely enough time to make a run to the car for snacks, but then ended up waiting around with the crowd for the pairing sheets to appear.
None of this bothered me too much, as I was still riding high a bit on my early good start. Finally I settled down with the Black pieces again and shook hands with my opponent. It was time to try my first Queen's Indian over the board.
I had been looking at the QID only very recently, but I found it just the sort of opening I liked. It's thankfully not too complex to learn, and I had soaked up a few videos on it in recent days. Still I wasn't sure I would go that direction or not. If I wanted, I could always fall back on my old favorite the Blumenfeld Gambit. But I was a little rusty in that, so I decided to take my maiden voyage in a new opening.
Day one was over and it was late into the evening.I headed home and went to bed, but tossed and turned all night. The sleep was even worse than I had gotten the previous night. When the alarm woke me up in the morning, I was shaky, tired, and a little worried about my performance.
I was glad to have the White pieces, and decided to try to keep things relatively simple just to get me through the middle game. My opponent ventured the Dutch Defense, which allowed me one of my favorite openings, The Staunton Gambit.
I wasn't happy allowing the draw, but a half-point is at least better than no points. For once I had some time to get an actual meal, and headed across the street to a sandwich shop for a bite. I was starting to feel my energy come back to me after the break, but I still had another long game ahead of me.
To be continued...