Sunday, May 24, 2009

The Return of the One Day Tournament...

...for me at least. Even though I was on a steady diet of these in Indy, it's been a while since I played one. This particular tournament happened to be G60 5/inc, with four rounds. The first round was dirty.


I'd beaten this guy two times in a row despite our rating differential, but I screwed this game up badly. What can I say? It was early, I miscalculated. I don't really enjoy playing these coffeehouse guys so much. They launch a crazy attack and either win or lose, play really fast, and their style is almost completely based upon tactics. I'm not saying that because they beat me...I usually do well against these types of players. I just don't feel like it helps my chess as much to play these guys as it does to play someone with a more classical style. This is not to say that coffeehouse players are patzers, because that isn't the case. Some very strong players play in this manner to a greater or lesser extent, I just don't have much respect for the style. I like chess that makes positional sense.

So the second round went better. I played Jon Haskel whom I've played twice before (all whites), and he seems to have trouble with me even more than our rating disparity would suggest. I've seen Jon play some good games, but when we play I always seem to roll him. I guess it's some sort of karmic justice since his son always kicks my ass.


I misnamed the file, but I promise I was white. Jon and I went to analyze and eat at Panera, and when I got back for the third round I found myself paired with Sergio Liberatore. He's an 'A' player who I had not played against before. I actually consider this my best game of the tournament even though I lost. It was very hard fought and only the short time control prevented a good finish.


A tough loss, though I didn't feel nearly as bad about this one as my round one loss. This was a good game, not a blunderfest. The fourth round saw me paired against another player I'd not played before, a medium strength 'B' player. He played a classical Dutch which I've never studied, and he got a good position from the opening. Unfortunately for him he blundered and gave me a nice tactic which resulted in a totally winning position. The game didn't last much longer after that.


This wasn't a horrible tournament for me, though I will lose a few rating points. I was only unhappy with my play in the first game, which is not so bad considering how self critical I tend to be. I played one more game this last week in the final round at Boca, and it was very frusturating. My opponent had no pretensions in the opening and I was at least equal, but I blundered into a losing endgame. The worst part is, I saw the drawing move and played a blunder anyway. I simply didn't realize that the position was critical. Those sort of oversights really piss me off.


I was not pleased at all with myself after that one. In other news, I went to the Miami Chess Academy in search of lessons. While I liked the owner IM Blas Lugo quite a bit, it's a very long drive for me. We'll see. I did get to meet Julio Becerra (sort of. He nodded and went back to ICC) and play some blitz with a master, so it wasn't a waste of time. I even won one of those blitz games. Peace out.

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