My first ever REAL game

Feb 3, 2010, 12:18 AM |

I learned to play chess some time around 2001 - 2002 during grad school at UCLA.  I was often bored with my research, and I would play on FICS any chance I could get, especially in the school computer labs.  These games were horrendously low quality, but they were a decent learning experience.  I played at the UCLA club that met every Friday, and at one point even earned a spot playing board #4 in the UCLA vs USC LA Chess League match.  I no longer have the game score but it went something like this:

I don't remember the exact details, but eventually there too many pieces in the way of his queen getting over to the h-file, and I was able to take the g4 bishop.  After lots of piece exchanges, we got the following endgame where I thought I found a neat move.  This is the first time I ever thought about restricting my opponent's counterplay, although it wasn't really necessary:

After this game I played in the 2002 Amatuer Team West with the UCLA "B" team.  I did horribly, and failed to break 1300 for my first published rating.  I followed up with a few small local tournaments, and then no serious games until 2009!  Next post will be "My first ever REAL game ... in 7 years!"