17th Annual Chicago Open - Round 5 - Fourth win
After winning 3 games in a row, I knew that maintaining the wins would be very hard as the opponents would get stronger. I also knew it would be fun playing higher rated players. So, the self-talk began. I suspected that the rest of players I would play would be higher rated than me. I have always believed that I am stronger than my rating (shows). If in truth, I am not stronger than my rating, then I believe I have the potential to go a lot higher than my rating. You cannot argue against potential. So, I kept telling myself that in truth, I am higher rated than I am now, so I had at least equal chances. I also had to fight my doubts about my lack of preparation for this tournament. I told myself that I had won tournaments before without much preparation. I just had to believe that I would do well, and focus during my games. The last thing was a practical thing. When I go through Alekhine's and Fischer's games, I see a lot of things. I think I understand a lot of what happens. That being the case, I would be able to see and understand what was happening on the board with people rated 20xx! At the end of the day, each player gets a turn to contribute on what happens on the board.
So, that was the self talk.
I was a few minutes late for my earlier games because I came out of my room late as I don't like to "fight" with people to see who I am paired with. It messes up my "flow"/rythm. So, I let the games begin, and then peacefully walk to the pairing board to see what board and who I am going to play. The couple of lost minutes are worth it for me.
This game was different. I was a little late, yes, but when I went to the board position, my opponent was not there! Mmnnn! Interesting. I set up the board, waited a few seconds, and made my move and started the clock. My opponent showed up 5 minutes later. He took his time making the first move - (something that I do when I am late - just to compose myself) - I understood that. Then he took time taking off his jacket, getting a pen, etc. So I decided to wait until he was done and ready to sit down and play the game for me to make my second. I just wanted to say: "I know you are not worried about the time, neither am I." May be it was just my "twisted psychology", but that is a little background to the game.
The game itself was very interesting. I think this was my second best performance of the tournament. (I think the next game, round 6, was my best game of the tournament).
Without further ado, here is my fourth win.... two more to come...