Centotorri chess club tournament 2014-Part 2
(link to part one: http://www.chess.com/blog/bresando/centotorri-chess-club-tournament-2014-part-1)
The previous blog post described how, despite my rather altalenating quality of play, I stood on first place with 3/3 halfway through the yearly chess tournament of my club.
Round 4: Open the centre!
In round 4 I was paired against the only other player on 3/3, who tryed a delayed castling plan in a d3 ruy lopez. In the opening stage I was completely outclassed and found myself in a tricky situation, having to babysit my potentially weak central pawns while my oppenent was steadily building up a fearsome kingside pawnstorm. Noticing that his king was still in the middle of the board, I decided to try my luck with a speculative pawn sacrifice to open up the position.
Round 5: A french gambit
In round 5 I met a player against whom i had two very sharp, uncompromising games last year. In both games the same variation was used, the first ending in a chrushing win for me and the second in an equally devastating defeat. The third game turned out to be a draw, but not before some interesting complications and, most notably, a considerable number of blunders!
Round 6: Not for chess lovers!
Looking at the standings after round 5, i realized that the tournament was now mine to lose. I had an half point lead going into the last round and I had already played all the higher rated opponents. My round 6 opponent turned out to be an unrated player who was playing long time control chess for the first time. In the previour rounds he had gained 4 points out of five (including a draw against a 1800) with a very peculiar tactical style, always playing for mate and direct attacks and not caring much about openings or pawns. In short, precisely the kind of opponent that you should be able to beat easily but can in fact swindle you at the slightest distraction if you're not focused. The resulting game is horrendous. He blundered a pawn right at the start , but I managed to play so many senseless moves that i first lost my advantage and then i could also have been worse. Luckily, in the end i manaed to win when he mistakenly decided to keep playing for an attack instead of exchanging queens.
In the end, i won the tournament with 5,5/6. I cannot say that i'm very happy about my play, as at a certain point I was worse or even losing in 5 games out of 6, and expecially the last game was so badly played that I am actually quite ashamed of showing it. The next tournament will tell if the fact that I won the event anyway was entirely due to luck of if I can at least claim that I partly deserved it as a reward for fighting hard in bad positions.
Until then, goodbye and thanks for reading!