Titled Tuesday and Saint Louis Rapid Summer Review

IM yian123
Aug 21, 2017, 6:00 PM |
This summer was interesting for me in terms of chess. I played two Titled Tuesdays (one went well with 6/10, the other was a disaster as I hung a queen around move 10 in one of my games!) and went to see the St.Louis Rapid and Blitz tournament because of the reappearance of Garry Kasparov.
There were a few interesting things I noted over the last 3 months.
  • Blitz/Rapid instinct goes down significantly after long periods of time, as you doubt your calculations and spend too much time and make silly blunders. This was my experience in the 2 Titled Tuesdays that I played, and Garry's experience too since he struggled until the very last day, where he scored 5.5/9.
  • After talking to 2 strong GMs (including a 2700+ from the St.Louis Rapid and Blitz), I realized that at the top level, the openings to prepare for are predictable for certain reasons, but the line that is prepared within such a opening(like the berlin) is difficult to predict. The reason for this is that most openings(Like the Breyer or Zaitsev), give white too many good choices to select from, and put black on the defensive too early on for no good reason. Additionally, the games from computer chess indicate that with a reasonable amount of precision, some openings are doomed early on.
  • Preparation at the top level, for success rate in terms of getting your opponent into the line you prepared, seems to be so so. Its a mix of successfully getting your opponent to go into your prep, and getting the opportunity to use it in a few months time.
With that being said, here are two interesting games I played over the summer. One was against my old opening the Cozio, and the other was against Leinier Dominguez, one of the participants in the St.Louis Rapid and Blitz Tournament and former World Blitz Champion in 2008.
Game against Leinier Dominguez
After seeing the world's best play in St.Louis, I thought the intuition of the players in fast time controls was really uncanny. The number of intermezzos they see prior to making their moves in blitz was eye-opening .