Classic Controls #3: The Best Game I’ve Ever Played

A little Chess update before I get into the game, last Tuesday I went to the local Chess club and played over the board with random but serious people for the first time in my life. I played some blitz against at 1900 nearly 2000 level player, I lost but some games were close. Blitz is fun but I don’t take it seriously, it’s more about memorization and knowing openings than the essence of Chess, it still drove home the point it was time to get more serious than I have ever been. I watched some of the people who were in the weekly Tuesday tournament and decided that this is going to be the place every week, 7-12. They play G30/5d which is a 30 minute clock for each player and a 5 second delay, longer than I usually play but not too long to get used to quickly.

The last few days I’ve been balancing a full school schedule of Math, Chem and honors English while trying to spend every other moment looking over something Chess related. Today I finished my test in math, hit the gym and sat down to play a few 15+15 games where I went 4-0 against 1400-1600 rated opponents, never really having been in trouble in any of the games. I expected things to go good seeing as I’ve spent countless hours the last week physically playing and mentally going over positions and tactics. The last game of the series really seemed to bring everything I’ve been working on up to this point together. I was out of my prep on move 1 as my opponent played the Mikenas Defense which is 1.d4 Nc5 but having played the game so well without having any set lines and being in a place I haven’t seen allowed the pure chess ability come out rather than preparation. That being said, I think this is the best game I’ve ever played. I’m coming for the people at the club.

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Rapid Time #8: Shut’em Down, Open Up Shop

This is a positional game play against a 1396 opponent where I played the Caro-Khann with this goals of locking down the entire board after seeing the way White was choosing to response. They created some long term weaknesses, never focused on King safety and over extended their pawns into the 6 rank. Knights shine in closed positions and my Knights were undoubtedly the most active pieces I had.  They spent the game maneuvering around to pressure points and probe weakness, it was like jungle warfare.

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Rapid Time #7: How to Crush Cookie-Cutter Players

Everyone in the 1200-1600 range seems to want to play 1.e4 and go into the Italian Game, it’s an easy opening for beginners no doubt. Pieces go on the same squares every game, it allows for quick development, castles and an attack. Well, I don’t think I should give White the pleasure of choosing such an opening…after 1.e4 I play c6 and it really really throws a wrench in everything, it’s spectacular. Most players try to play as though nothing has changed, it’s quite funny watching them flail around having no idea what to do or where to place anything. The problem is many players stick to an opening and learn the moves they are supposed to play… well what happens when your opponent decides they don’t want to play your game? Most experienced people say you shouldn’t learn openings but instead learn how to play, to a degree I agree but knowing some mainlines and traps in your favorite opening is a must. The game I want to show today is one of these people who don’t know anything but what they always do and it’s apparent by move 3 by their response to c6-d5.

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Chess games and writings.