Sunday, November 26, 2006

Rapid Cream Chess

Yesterday we participated in the 34th ERU Goldcup Cream Cheese Rapid Chess Tournament among 180 other players. I always use that to find out where I'm standing and to adjust my training for the Corus tournament.
I'm not quite sure how to interpret the results.

I played four g/30 games against equal rated opposition and I scored +1 =2 -1
I totally overplayed all players in the opening.
In the middlegame they were quite paralysed and deprived from any space. Every move of any piece but one would result in mate or loss of material. But they were good defenders and moved just Rb1 and back to a1 waiting for me to finish them off. Since all my pieces but one were needed to maintain the pressure, I didn't know how to continue, so the time started to play a big role. And that was costing me points.

But how to interprete this? My opening play is clearly pretty strong, but I have trouble to finish them off. They all said they were lost and that I could win earlier, but I don't agree with them. They had defensive resources that I saw but they apparently did not.

I had these kind of results before and I concluded then that I needed more tactical skills to finish them off within the time. Now that my tactical skills have increased greatly, I see more opportunities to pressurize them but at the same time a see much more defensive resources for them. So I still can't crush them. And to gamble they won't see the defensive resources is beyond my character.

So I need a plan B.
I guess that must be to trade most pieces and to head for a good endgame.
I will have to experiment if that is a solution.

At least I won a book voucher and a few cups of cream cheese.


  1. Wow g/30 is fast! Sounds like you are playing very well. Perhaps in a longer game you will not get in time trouble?

  2. > Rb1 and back to a1

    you can then move your rook from a1 to b1 =>

  3. btw:

    I thought you were reading karpov's book? But i noticed you didn't mention it in your last post. What was the title again?

    Also, what about "My system" by nimzo? Is that a good book in your opinion?

    I'm reviewing my basic chess strategy too. It seems i've forgotten how to win as I went 2-8 in my last ten games =<

  4. Blue,
    probably I would get into time trouble too in a longer game. By good defence there isn't always a finish without a speculative sac. If there isn't a finishing tactic (plan A) you have to change to plan B (trade off pieces and head for a good ending). But I'm not very trained in plan B. So that is what I will try to train before Corus by reading strategy books and play correspondence chess.

  5. Nezha,
    we are working from the Karpov book (My best games)too, but with less priority.

    I haven't read "My system" myself (although the name "Temposchlucker" originates from it.) According to GM Donner it in "The King" it has more an artistique value than it is a study book.

  6. Your problem sounds familiar to me. What about opening the position when better developed? I think I could have done better in most of my cases with such a strategy. Instead I let my opps keep the position closed and they traded pieces and suddenly had the opportunity for a counterstrike.

  7. Mouse the situation is as follows:

    The center is closed.
    I opened the kingside.
    The king is under heavy attack.
    Every piece of the enemy is occupied in defense, except one. He can't make a single move without losing material or being mated, except useless moves with the one remaining piece.
    At my side every piece except one is involved in the attack. If I move a piece, his paralyzation is broken. There is simply not enough space for the remaining piece to get involved in the attack.

    Opening the center would backfire, since my king isn't protected by pawns anymore (used in the storm)

    In the past I thought I could solve this by better tactics. Now I'm better at tactics I see more tactics, but at the same time I see more defensive resources. So that doesn't help.

  8. Tempo, it seems that your strategy was right. It seems that you had a superior position. Conclusion: There must be a tactic. Can you post this game at chesslog?

  9. Mouse,
    since it were rapid games I haven't annotated them. Sorry the discussion remains a litle vague because of that. But I don't believe that this can be solved by tactics alone anymore.

  10. A king march could have been the answer.The king is a fighting piece too no?