Friday, March 31, 2006

A Victory

As promised, a report on last night's tournament game. I defeated L. O'Doan (1668) and am at 2.5-2.5 with one round to go in the Reno CC Class B Ch. A win or draw in the final round against A. Mann, who I defeated the first time around, will ensure second place for me.

I haven't time right now to do justice to annotating the game, but briefly, as black in a King's Indian I felt pretty comfortable with his Petrosian Variation, and when he let me push a pawn to f4 I had a nice bind on the kingside, and was able to play on both sides of the board. He was definitely on defense. Around move 20 I played what I thought was a killer combination winning at least a pawn--but he found a move I'd overlooked, moving his Queen back to the square it had just left. I was lucky in a way, finding a sequence that kept material in balance, and a few moves later won the exchange with a continuing bind. I just was careful to look for any tricks after that, until I mated him on move 42.

I'm pleased overall with the game, and the fact that I managed my clock as planned--30 minutes left for the last 10 moves, and four minutes for the last move before the control; but I'm usually going to have to play better than this (overlooked tactic) to hang with the A players and above. It's not that O'Doan isn't a good player. Once above 1900, he's still a good fighter who doesn't go down easily. But I doubt that an A player or above would have let me get such a bind on the position.

Next time: Catching up with some game scores, but first The Sage in the Tower has listed his Favorite 11 Chess Books, and I'm going to consider that, and share my choices with you.

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