Round 2: Pyschological Victory
Before Round 2, I hung out with a few of my fellow chess clubbers while at the same time doing homework. Bruce, a professor at the university I attend, all of a sudden asked me what opening I hate to face. "What are we facing each other this round?" I asked. It turns out we were. I would have the black pieces.
I have played more games against Bruce than any other chess player. Over our numerous games I have probably lost about 5 or 6 games. Therefore Bruce thought he would probably lose. This psychology impacted the following game:
Round 3: Awful game full of awful moves
In the third round I was to face a WGM. However I had the white pieces, so I wasn't too concerned.
Round 4: Battle of Champions
In round 4, the SD State Champion and the SD State Jr. Champ went toe to toe. It was a pure heavyweight fight filled with blows by both sides. I grabbed the advantage from the opening. It looked like I was simply going to pick off his weak pawns.However my opponent showed he was resourceful and fought back - getting an attack on the kingside..... and the punches started flying.
Round 5: Strong Handshake
In the last round I faced a with the white pieces. In OTB chess its considered proper to shake hands before the game. My last round opponent put some shoulder muscle into his hand shake. I wasn't prepared for such a handshake and knocked over some pieces with my elbow. However my opponent's fierce handshake didn't carry over to the game. He burned up a ton of time on the clock - by move 16 or so he had 20 minutes of his time left!
And so I finished the tournament in style - his biggest mistake was giving up his dark-squared bishop. However I have never seen such a comical setup of pieces as I have in this game. All of black's pieces were sitting over on the queenside tripping over each other. He tried to give me another shoulder assisted handshake after he resigned - and I threw a little shoulder into my handshake. I stood up and started to pack my stuff away and was congratulated by a spectator who had been watching my game. He said he enjoyed watching my attack. I thanked him.
I'm always happy when people enjoy my games. I have heard that a chess player is part scientist, competitor, and artist. A well-played can can give you a sense of artistic pride.
Overall, my tournament was not bad. However, I played bad chess on the first day of the tournament. I don't know how I scored 2/3 that day. The next day I actually played decent chess. I finished with an overall score of 3.5/5 - not a great scorce but not a bad score. However, I had ambitions to finish at least in the top three - I failed at that goal. I vowed that my next tournament would be different.