phorku's chess blog

Thursday, April 26, 2007

2007 Parma Open

I won 3 out of 4 games and tied for second. It should have been 4 out of 4 and tied for first I lost to some low rated kid. Aaaaaaaaarrrrrrgh. They definately have the psychological advantage. I can't get up the same blood lust when I play them and then overestimate them. On top of this I couldn't get my head in the game. I tell the kid afterword he is the only one that beat me, and he says with wonder "How did you get 3 points?". I was ready to smack him; the question was how the hell did he beat me? Too bad he didn't make some smart ass comment before the game...

Anyway I had to force myself to play well in the second game and then the automatic thought process finally kicked in and I kicked ass.

Here are 2 of the games:

This one (new window) is probably my best combination in a game. It would be my best game but we both missed a tricky tactic (can you find it?). I also miss several mates in 4 - 8 while I am in clean up mode which I don't penalize myself for since you should simplify when ahead, and the object is not to necesarrily find the best move but any realizable plan. I attribute this game to learning the mating patterns and tactical training. Special thanks to Tak (My Hero), Nehza (Rook battering rams) and J'Adoube (Recent return to Art of Attack) for inspiring me back to aggressive play.

This one (new window) contains a true Bishop sac (declined) on f7. I am playing the Sicilian Halasz Gambit which is usually a rather slow gambit where I lock the center pawns and attack on the King Side. 99% of these games your opponent more or less naturally falls into the main line for the first several moves. This guy plays some unatural moves so I have to think about the opening for a change. I go out of the main line and get ahead in space, development and castled. He tempts me so I go for it.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Breaks good...

Overtraining bad.

How many times have I learned this lesson?

Martial Arts:
  • Lateral Epicondylitis
  • Arthritis in hips
  • Bursitis in forearms
  • Arthritis in hands
  • Triceps tendonitis
  • Achilles tedonitis
I have found in each of these things I overtrained in, if I was forced to stop for a short period, my skills would be at their peak when I return. Of course, continuous overtraining leads to bad things. Part of the reason why I would have the improvement is because my enjoyment of the activity would also be at its peak. Fun = Performance.

So I wonder if thats where those odd guys at the club come from... over training in chess?

Anyway check out my CTS graph:
The beginning part is drudgery of consitent training, then the peak of enjoyment, then the return of drudgery. Luckily my game performance does not seem to be linked to my CTS performance. Regularly working out on CTS has helped alot. I think I am going to start adding in the more difficult CT-Art problems to my training. I need to be able to calculate deeper as well as faster.

Perhaps I will slow down on the number of problems I do. I will hit the 7000 mark sooner or later. This goal is now trivial, I know I will get there over time, and it should not over shadow the real goal of chess improvement (and having fun).

Sunday, April 22, 2007

307 Points in < 150 Days

I have reached new high ratings in the USCF (1446) and on FICS (1608).

Since September 8th, 2005 I have completed over 4496 problems:
CT-Art Level 10 x 3 + 96 89% / 85% / 93% / 90%
CT-Art Level 20 x 2 76% / 78%
CT-Art Level 30 x 2 57% / 62%
CT-Art Level 40 x 1 56%
CTS 2948 / 77.6% / rating: 1331