Analysing My Own Games: Fear of Tension
Being critical of your wins is just as important as annotating your losses. More so, I want to strive for improvement and understand more about my chess shortcomings. It was a theme in Andy Soltis' "What it takes to be a Chess Master" that it is not so much knowledge that one lacks, but rather our prejudice. That may come in the guise of bias, laziness or a unwillingness to change.
Fear of Tension
In the above position I was Black. My opponent was forced to move his Knight to b6 after miscalculating the defence of d4.
During the game, the only move I considered was the elimination of the Knight with 18. ... Nxd6 19. cd Qxd6.
In post moretem, only now do I see that there was the possibility of 18. ... Ncxd4.
Why didn't I consider this?
If I ask myself this question, deep down I have to admit to myself that it must be due to a fear of tension. I can't stand seeing the White Knight embedded on d6 in the heart of my position.
This is an enemey of being objective. It's an area I'll conciously work on by "sitting" in the tension.
In the above position, as Black I played 22. ... Qb4 and then after 23. Qb2 did I execute 23. ... Nxd4 exploiting that the White Queen is overworked defending d4 and c1.
But actually, Black could have played 22. ... Nxd4 as the Queen is overworked.
What made me miss this?
I have to admit to myself that deep down, I was fooled by White's geometrical set up.
The Be3 is defending d4 and Qd2 is supported from behind by Rd1.
Similarly, Rc1 is defending by Rd1 and Qd2 which is reinforced by Be3 from behind.
It's this "reinforcement" of pieces that deceived me ... yet after Nxd4 the Bishop can no longer support c1.
Geometically it's easier for me to with the Queen at b2 that the "roles" are separated.
I must "talk to my pieces" and my opponents. Make a concious effort to ask what roles that have to overcome geometrical mistakes.
Game Annotations and Analysis