Saturday, June 10, 2006

Mass Open catharsis

I went through each and every one of the 6 HORRIBLE games played over the Memorial day massacre called the Mass Open. More than using Fritz to spot the bonehead moves... I went through each postion as carefully as possible and added my thought process that went on at the time. This was very revealing and very insightful to why I suck.

The common theme I ran across was that I tend to play "rote" moves... whether I am black or white. A failure in the way I learned my openings. Memorization is a fatal flaw...especially if you can't remember. Instead of playing what the position demands, I make what I was considering a "normal" developing move. The problem being that my "normal" developing move is flawed and based entirely on a blank system called the London system. As white, I play this with a pretty good degree of success but I will get into my flaws in a bit as white. The MAJOR issue as black... I play moves that are more thematic if I had colors reversed.... except I am a tempo behind! It was like watching a train wreck in slow motion. Now call it laziness... feeble mindedness... or plain stupidity... the first step was seeing the problem ...over and over. This made an impression.

In the games where I played white, in getting an advantage like development, I turned over the intiative rather than exploit the advantage. Bah! I watched in several of my games how I had a developmental lead in the opening and clearly an opportunity to open up the position and exploit the advantage only to make a timid move or offer an opportunity for my opponent to "catch up" and in some cases hand over the initiative.

One other theme I seemed to run into is what I call "chasing ghosts". In my timidness, I would suspend my attack to respond to an opponents seemingly important threat. This ended up handing the game over on several instances. If I would have only realized that having the initiative gave me a better edge and that if my opponent did try to execute a counter threat... I had ample response time to meet it.

There were other sub themes that all stemmed from these concepts. But having them glare at me in the face, watching the train wrecks again... but understanding how and why ... was a bit soothing.

In my training for the next few weeks before the World open... I plan on sparring with fritz on key positions where I tend to play by rote and force myself to play the position. I plan to extract positions from actual games based on my opening repertoires. Also, I plan on finding positions where I have a positional advantage and play against fritz. Practice..Practice...Practice.

1 comment:

Temposchlucker said...

I recognize the "chasing ghosts" part all too well. I used to make pawnmoves to prevent the opponent to move his pieces to certain squares, where he didn't intended to go in the first place.
The problem with this is that you can't prevent your enemy from moving towards you by pawnmoves alone. You work at only one possible threat at the same time. Since there are always more possibilities, you fall behind.

Now I have developed a sort of allergy for pawnmoves in the opening. I take care that I don't move more pawns than my opponent.
That works.