President's Day Southwest Classic in DFW

President's Day Southwest Classic in DFW

Feb 18, 2018, 5:51 AM |

I've already some painful games...I'm putting the Southwest Classic Games here for posterity.

My opponent seemed all too excited after the first game to tell me how rare his Nimzowitsch line was.  Apparently this can sometimes transpose into an opening I play but I wasn't aware of that at the time.  I miscalculated an early bxf6, activating his pieces.  Then I devastated my position by thinking I'd be better after an exchange but like a novice, missed that it came with check.  Ugh.  Gross feeling to catch that late.

Game 2 was fairly unremarkable... I only have 1 inaccuracy but my opponent didn't put much pressure on me.  It's a Scandinavian declined, as I like to call it. I'm told I'm not giving this game enough credit but I again point out the lack of conventional opening moves and lack of pressure by my opponent.
Round 3 was very painful as I aleady both love playing this opening but have also had some traumatic games associated with it.  In this one I had up to a 10 point advantage and blundered it in a way I still don't understand and need to review pronto.  I learned a very important lesson about breaking open the Sicilian castle, also...something I often struggle with in various ways. My opponent started the clock when I was in the bathroom (despite that we were using my board!!).  She was otherwise pleasant.  I was tired very early in this early I mean move 18, though she was really using up her time and was down by 18 minutes at one point.  
DAY 2 
Day 2 went pretty smoothly  My opponent had started the clock about 3 minutes before I arrived but she seemed pleasant enough until she blundered a piece. To be fair it wasn't the most obvious blunder and she really had the advantage but the position she chose called for precision.  She chose to put us in the London System. - against which I've had good results lately. She played many fantastic moves that were intimidating on first sight.  She's the only opponent who ignored me when I said "good luck in your next game".  I assume she was upset.  She offered a draw when she was already a piece down. I politely declined.  I played best move 51% of the time and she played best move not much different.  The game got sharp.  I contend my worst move was 16...b5, allowing her bishop in.  Followed by 42...c5, in which I miss mate (will examine further).
Game 5 began at 6 pm.  We were both right on time.  He was a bit unconventional, seemed mid to late 20's.  Asked if he could listen to his headphones during the game, not sure why I felt uncomfortable and declined that. So he left them hovering near his ears the whole time.  Got up a lot, but was otherwise friendly.  His opening was fairly congested and was basically a Sicilian French that had none of the elements that makes the French so annoying to play against.  That said, he played many excellent moves once things were I'd the opening is the weakest part of his game.  It got very tactical, sharp, and I had fun being very creative on several moves.  After 4. d5 White is ahead +1.75 but no worries, I let him equalize by dxe6 instead of playing d6 (best move)and my 8.e5 was a mistake and 15. Rg1 and 17. Qd2 and 18. c4 were not good moves on my part -  but I like to think Alpha Zero would say Black's position was never easily playable. Ironically he played best moves slightly more than I did but I will say my moves were quite wild and pleasurable.  He gave me a hard time though a couple times before move 25 he solved my position problems for me.  Something fascinating about this game is that I felt mostly in control een when the computer claims he had over a half point advantage in the middle game.  I definitely see that I missed some not-so-obvious moves, like if he had played 23...Rf3 and I missed an earlier mate.  
After move 25 of the game my pruning kicked in magically and despite being very down on time, I didn't carry my typical paralytic fear of blundering or struggling to find the win.  Jeremy's favorite game of my tournament so far is Rxe6+!!  Mine might be Rc3+!
 This next one...not really sure I have anything to say other than thank you to Stepanie Ballom and GM Angel Lopez for going over the game with me right away while I was still in pain (thuugh Angel mostly made fun of me).  xoxo
this one below is almost as disgusting...but I can attribute some of the loss of concentration on fatigue.  Only 2 of 7 games were openings I recognized.  I did not know this was the Pirc. 


More from Kernicterus
Caution: Tacticals Ahead - Move Order Nightmares that Baffled Me Today and My Self Analysis.

Caution: Tacticals Ahead - Move Order Nightmares that Baffled Me Today and My Self Analysis.

I've started a GoFundMe page for my painfully expensive chess OTB habit.  Donate anything! :)

I've started a GoFundMe page for my painfully expensive chess OTB habit. Donate anything! :)