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In-Depth Analysis of a Tournament Game

dpnorman
Jun 4, 2015, 1:27 PM 8
Since my school year is wrapping up, I am ready to begin spending even more time on chess every day. I will have at least three or four hours every day to spend on chess, and therefore, I think one of the first things I need to do is go over all of these tournament games I've played lately, many of which I haven't analyzed in depth. And this is a problem because, as many of you know, I am on the longest losing streak of my life at this moment at 7 games. I have had two consecutive tournaments where I lost all my games, and because I've had schoolwork and various things to attend to, I haven't had time to go through them. Now that I do have that time, I am going to be able to analyze my games in greater detail than ever before. Hopefully putting my own play under the microscope will help me break out of this terrible slump I seem to be in. 

In this post, I am going to analyze one game in more depth than any I have ever analyzed before. This is a game from the Mid-Atlantic Class Scholastic Championship tournament which was held at Perryville Middle School a few weeks ago. The game is against a 6th grader named Tad Mrozek, whom I had beaten before at the Eastern Open after he blundered a knight for no compensation in the opening. This game, unfortunately, was a bad loss and I want to look at it.

The first thing I will do is reproduce the game here with exactly no annotations. Here you will just see the moves that were played (and the moment when he offered a draw and I declined will also be noted).

Part 1: No Annotations


Without annotations, you can still see some important aspects of the game. For example, the opening allowed white to gain a large space advantage, and black undermined the white center with the timely move ...e6. Furthermore, there were several moments of tactical importance, specifically white's idea of 13. Bxb8 followed by 14. Nxg5, and the sequence starting with 22. dxe6. Finally, we can see that the game simplified in black's favor, as he was able to push his c-pawn without white having any way of stopping it.

So next, I will mention some of the things that I remember thinking as I was playing, and attempt to annotate the game without deep analysis. This is just what I am thinking as I look back through the game, and what I remember having thought at the board. No engines or databases will be used and I will not make much effort to analyze too deeply by myself, either.

Part 2: My Thoughts (No Real Analysis)


Remember, the above is simply my memory of my thoughts at the time, as well as what I am thinking immediately when I go back and look at the game. 

Now the game will be broken into the relevant sections. First is the opening. As you can see above, I believed that my opponent's 5...dxc4 was wrong, but I may not have played correctly against it. In this section, I will be using the help of the database at 365chess.com.

Part 3: The Opening (With Database Statistics)


Now it is time to get my hands dirty- I will do my best now to analyze this game with no engine, just using a board and moving the pieces around, with the goal of finding the best move in every position in this game after the opening (which ended on move 8 after we went out of book). This is the hardest step. After I finish with this, I will then check with Fritz 12 to see what it has to say.

Part 4: Dry Analysis (No Engine)

The most difficult part over, I now will use Fritz 12 to check over all of my dry analysis to see what I got right and what I didn't. This is the penultimate step. 
Part 5: Engine Analysis (Fritz 12)



Part 6: Putting It All Together


This is the end of my analysis of my tournament game against Tad Mrozek at the Mid-Atlantic Class scholastic event last month. I spent a lot of time analyzing this game, and I think it was very interesting and no doubt a good exercise for my chess. I discovered a lot of things I missed in the game, such as Qxh5, 20. e5, and the immaculate tactic with Bxe4 and f5!!. Some of the things I noticed in my Dry Analysis were correct, such as Be5 and Qxh5 possibilities, but I also missed a lot of things; for example, I thought I was losing after 34...c4 in my Dry Analysis, but my Engine Analysis proved that white can still draw there, and the next move was the real blunder. I plan to analyze all of my tournament games with this level of depth (although I may not post them all), because I am about to have a lot more time on my hands with summer approaching.
Doing this analysis, in total, took me around seven hours for this one game. This was a lot of time, and so I would really appreciate it if those of you who read this blog would comment on the game and the relevant analysis. Also, I want to know what you all think of this approach to analyzing chess games.
Thank you for reading.

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