Oregon Class Championships Round 4
In the final round I was paired against G. Narayanarao. I wasn't sure if he had 2 or 2.5 at this point, but I knew he didn't have 3, so I psychologically shot myself in the foot. I realized that a draw would secure first place. I kept telling myself that I should play for a win, I knew playing for a draw was bad chess, but well, going home with 0$ for a loss, or 128$ for a draw or a win, it was hard to overcome my own attitude. This was the first game I've ever played where the psychological pressure of 'all I need is a draw' actually was relevant. I've never been in contention for first place in any of the USCF tournys I've played in, so hopefully in the future if it happens, I can shake the nerves.
I had white, and the game started at about 6:30 PM. I was rather exhausted at this point, but it was the last game of the day, so I tried to martial enough energy to play competently. I'm sure my opponent would be tired too, so it saps both players. 3 games in a day is just too much.
So I managed to draw my last game and end up with 3.5/4. I was very pleased with myself, even though I had things to improve on in all my games. Namely opening prep against the English (games 1 and 2), not dropping pawns in the Ruy (game 3), mental stamina and desire to win (game 4). My best tournament result yet, even if it is just Class B. A couple more good results and I'll be playing in the Class A / Open sections.