I live in chicago and yeah theres not alot of tournment options around, Time4tea you play at the Mcdonalds at foster and western? anyways iv been reading your post and glad to see your progress! I too want to start playing OTB. i have a small chess group, since there really no clubs in chicago, but i want more, where did you register online or? Im ready to get beaten by 10 year olds! im 30 lol.
I think that the best way to get better at OTB chess @T4T would just be to get more experience. You seem to have good positional and tactical understanding; you probably could reach 1700+ after a couple more tourneys. Also, remember to watch your clock in the 45 min games- if you see two lines, one of which might be completely winning but needs like 15 minutes to calculate, and one which definitely wins but goes into an endgame a piece up, go for the endgame. If your opponent plays a move you didn't calculate, you might run out of time.
Thanks - I think this is good advice 190493. Sometimes it's good to be wary of entering into very complicated lines OTB, especially if you're low on time. You can't always approach it in the same way you would a correspondence game :-)
@AKAL1: Thanks very much for analyzing that game and I really appreciate your comments. The main reason that I wanted to avoid the Queen trade on move 9 was because (as I saw it) it would have given me a Berlin Wall type pawn structure weakness, but without the Bishop pair to compensate. Although I agree that the lines in your analysis don't look too bad for Black. Also, I wanted to play aggressively and put him under some pressure in the middlegame - I didn't want to trade down to an endgame too soon.
It's an interesting move, but I'm not sure I agree with your analysis after 16.b4!? I think 18.0-0 would be a mistake:
19..Bb3 would definitely have been a very good move, and I like your idea of attacking d3 - that would have put White under a lot of pressure.
Regarding the endgame, I think this has been a good lesson for me in just how complex King & Pawn endgames can be and how you should be very careful before trading down to them. Out of interest, Stockfish's refutation of 32..exf5 is rather brilliant. I can't resist posting it as a puzzle, but bear in mind this is not my analysis! There's no way in a squillion years I would ever have seen this during a game! :
lol the pawn ending..
Maybe I should revise my statement: feel free to trade into a pawn ending if you are a computer! I thought my analysis was pretty sound, but knew there was a refutation. IM Silman actually worte in one of his books about how he saw a pawn endgame, got into correspondence with a few GMs, and it took them six months to find the correct result of the ending.
My point with the comment about exchanging queens is that endgames/middlegames can still be very exciting. Exchanging queens does not have to mean that the game is a draw, even if the position looks equal.
On 18. 0-0, of course I had to put a blunder in my analysis (read the coment I posted just before the analysis :)
Hi Scannerman, no I haven't played at the McDonalds at foster & western. Do people play Chess there? I found out about the tourneys on the USCF website. They usually have a link to the tourney page where you can sign up, but you need to be a USCF member first (you can sign up online). So, you haven't played in an OTB tourney at all?
Wow - that's a very eye-opening anecdote! I saw another thread on here where someone asked what the most complex type of endgame is and IM pfren said it's without a doubt King & pawn. I'm starting to understand better what he meant by that. I'll make a note in future to only trade down to a pawn ending if I'm absolutely sure it's good for me, or if I'm in a bad situation anyway and want to create complications to try to force a mistake
I certainly take your point that trading Queens early isn't always dull and drawish - there is usually a lot of play to be had in a Queenless middlegame. I actually like the endgame a lot and tbh I usually feel more comfortable there than in the opening/middlegame. Not in that particular one though!
Hey, yeah there a few guys that play there from time to time, from my observation they range from about 1500 to 2000, theres a older guy there thats about 2000. I play OTB but not in a serious tourney setting. I want to so thats why i try to stay fresh with OTB just in case i take the plunge. I think i take chess a lil more seriously then the rest in my group and i can see im slowly starting to get the upper hand on them cuz of my studying and practice. We play with a clock but i hanvt gotten to the point where i record the moves which i think i will start very soon. There only One chess club in my area and thats Touch Move but i always get a wierd vibe from there. how do you practice? or do you just study lines? or do you just play yourself?