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SirBenjamin at Cychess XXXVIII - First OTB Tourney!

SirBenjamin at Cychess XXXVIII - First OTB Tourney!

SirBenjamin
Sep 25, 2009, 3:30 PM 6

This Sunday, September 25th, 2009 was Cychess XXXVIII in Ames, Iowa, on the ISU campus.   This is a big deal for me since it is my very first OTB tournament (*over-the-board... aka 'in person').  

Here are the details from their official flyer:

CYCHESS XXXVIII

WHAT:    OPEN 3SS CHESS TOURNAMENT
A USCF RATED CHESS EVENT
 
WHEN:    SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 2009
SPONSORED BY THE CYCLONE CHESS CLUB
 
WHERE:   MOLECULAR BIOLOGY BLDG
ISU CAMPUS-AMES, IA     (ENTER THE NORTH DOOR)
 
WHO:      OPEN TO ANY USCF MEMBER
MEMBERSHIP AVAILABLE AT SITE
 
DETAILS:  TIME CONTROL         G/45 (G/40 w/5 sec delay)

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PRE-TOURNEY COMMENTS:
I felt prepared for the tourney and felt comfortable right up until the first game started.  One thing that I think is really cool & deserves some recognition...  Via Twitter.com, I mentioned to the great 'Chess Queen' Alexandra Kosteniuk that I had my first chess tournament coming up and she replied directly to me with some advice and good luck wishes!

She is an extremely fan-conscious chess celebrity who actually seeked me out, rather than vis versa.  You can read about her and stay up to date on the chess world via her website: http://www.kosteniuk.com/ 

or follow her on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/chessqueen

THE BIG DAY:
With respect to my opponents, I do not feel as if I should comment on these games move by move.  However, I would really appreciate any of my chess-blog readers to give me as much or as little constructive criticism as they can muster!

Round 1 - I found out after the game that my opponent has played rated games against 3 GM's including Gary Kasparov.  My first OTB tournament game ever:


Round 2 - My next opponent, Mr. Mueller, is a retired principal & took advantage of my ill-fated moves.


Round 3 - This round I drew a younger opponent, last name Heron, who had some good ideas but played his pieces very individually.  He did miss a killer move to go up big on me at move 17. now that I flip through it again.  This would have allowed him to remove my bishop for free with possibility of exchanging queens (or at the very least, throwing me into "panic-mode"), leaving him with 2 pawns with clear paths.


POST-TOURNEY REMARKS:
There we have it.  My first tournament could be classified as a "disasterous showing," considering how hard I've been working lately, but I am taking the following points into consideration:

     •  It was my first tourney ever, I knew it would be intimidating and confusing.  I've never had to track a timed game with chess notation before.
     •  I have little to no OTB experience, even casually, except for a few sparse games between me and my father or youngest brother.

So, I am taking the results of this tournament with a grain of salt and treating it as a motivator and of course a learning experience.  I hope to find more tournament play soon.

I want to give a shout out to 3 chess.com acquaintences which I was pleased to meet in person on Sunday:  HankAnzis, Vandarringa, & Thunder197.  Always nice to be able to put a face & voice with a name. 

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