Last night I played the first round of the Rated Quads, which is a tournament my chess club is running. One game (G/75) every Wednesday for the next three weeks. I'll update this blog with tournament results as they happen.
My first game was with Tony, rated 1408. Judging from the way he played, I think he was nervous, even though he's much older than me and a more experienced tournament player.
The game itself was pretty uneventful. It seemed like all he wanted to do was develop and trade down. I tried to find the sharpest moves possible, but all I managed to get was an extra pawn after he played 7. ...c5. After a long series of trades on the d6 square my attack stalled. I just couldn't find a way to break through. I'm beginning to wonder if I should have ignored 11. Bxd6 in favor of creating a stronger, more decisive attack. It certainly would have led to a more interesting game.
I think that is the difficulty I am having with tournament life so far -- being new to competitive chess and that the game was an important one to win, should I have gone after every small advantage (11. Bxd6), or should i have gone for a stronger attack (f3, g4-g5, etc.). My gut says go for the attack. If it was a regular club game I certainly would have, but I guess since points were on the line and I didn't know my opponent very well, I went with the safest and most boring choice.
I kind of wish I'd gone for the kill now.