Friday, August 6, 2010

US Open: Day 1 Summary & 1st Round Game

It's Friday morning and I'll be playing round 4 in less then an hour.  I got paired up again in round three.  Once again I totally outplayed my opponent out of the opening with Black, but couldn't hold my positional or clock advantage.  I over extended my queen side pawns and then ended out in a good knight versus bad bishop ending.  Unfortunately I was the one with the bad bishop.  Games like this remind me of why I like knights when I have them.

After three rounds I have a score of .5 - 2.5.  Slightly worse then the last two years at this same juncture.  The fourth round is a crucial one for me.  I'll get paired down this round.  If I can avoid being victimized by a lower rated player then I will have the hope of decent pairings for the enxt few rounds.  If I lose then it will get ugly.  However I'm not sweating it.  Even though I only have a half point, which BTW I did not deserve, I'm actually satisfied with my play for the most part.  I'm taking my time, albeit sometimes too much of it.  More importantly, I haven't had the overwhelming desire to be bouncing around the room looking at other games.  We'll see how long that lasts when I play the slow game tonight.

I'm taking a little more holistic approach to the tournament.  Yesterday morning I went out for a walk.  I had a manicure and massage, and then did some grocery shopping.  I brought back lots of fresh fruit and milk.  I'm also making an effort to come back to the room between rounds, relax and eat a healthy snack.  It's easy for me at this tournament to get totally overstimulated by the reunion atmosphere of the event.  I actually came back to the room after taking some pictures in the tournament room and ate a little bit, relaxed and meditated before bed.  I know if I had gone to the skittles room I would have ended out staying up until 1:30 am.

I also have not been running from one workshop to another.  The workshops are sometimes interesting, but depending how involved I get in the discussion they can be draining.  I'll have my fill of meetings and hotly debated discussion when I attend the delegates meetings on Saturday and Sunday.  This hotel is nice and quiet so I don't have to deal with all the noise of a casino in the lobby.  This is not Vegas!

While eating my breakfast of cereal, fresh strawberries and green tea I went over and analyzed my first two games.  Round one was a good game.  However after spending much of the game with a positional and time advantage, both managed to disappear at the worst possible moment.  I didn't all the moves down, but here is the final position when I ran out of time.

Black to move

It's unclear whether I can actually hold the ending.  White is probably going to win my h pawn. Then becomes a matter of whether or not I can pick up his b pawn.  I looked at one possibility using Fritz, but I don't think Fritz plays ending very well.  The analysis pointed to me holding the position.  However the clock was too big a factor. 1... Kc6 2. h4 Kb5 3. Ne3 Kxb4 4. h5 Kc5 5. Ng4 Kd6 6. Nxh6 Ke7 7. Ng4 Kf7 8.Kg5 Ba7 9. Nh6+ Kg7 10. Nf5+ Kh7 11. Kf6 Be3 12. Ke5 Bg5.

Here's the game up to where I stopped keeping score. 


Almost time for round 4, so I'll sign off here.  To be continued.....


Liquid Egg Product said...

Although you couldn't pull it out, to be doing well against a 2300 that late in the game? I'm impressed.

How does it feel to have Isiah back with the Knicks?

Anonymous said...

Well, you seem to be taking the whole thing rather well. Hopefully your performance will improve.

chesstiger said...

I wonder why you played so much twice with the same piece in the opening while it wasn't necessary. You gave your opponent a whole lot of tempies for free. Lucky for you your opponent gave some tempos back to you by doing the same.

All by all a not bad played game but i missed some black action that wasn't pointed at defending.