Thursday, April 18, 2013

Redemption Song

"Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds" - Bob Marley

I think that this wonderful bit of lyrical poetry pretty much sums up a game I played last night.

To set the scene...after achieving my all time rating high of 1724 I've shed 39 rating points in a couple of four round G/60 events over the past few weeks.  However, I knew that a win last night should get me back over the 1700 mark. 

Last night marked the final round of a six round tournament with one game per week.  My opponent is someone whom I have played numerous times but had never beaten.  I believe that my record was something like four draws and one loss. 

The two of us have been relatively close in rating since I started playing again a couple of years ago although lately I had opened up something of a gap.

I have been working a bunch of hours lately and was exhausted all day yesterday.  To compound the problem I had several energy drinks at work just to get through the day so I felt like a hot mess towards the later part of the afternoon and seriously thought about not playing at all.

But I finally decided that I felt good enough to play.

There are a few interesting things to me about this game...

The first is that I found an interesting "best move" which is when I played 8. Be3.  It just felt "right" to retreat after having provoked something of a weakness once Black had played ...h6

Another is that this is the first time I've ever had a game in which every piece of mine was off the board before a single pawn was.

Yet another is the fact that even in an eight pawns vs seven pawns ending in which my two sets of doubled pawns could have come in to play I was able to dominate.

Having used the "dominate" word I should explain that had my opponent not played 28...b6 then the win would have much trickier.  Still relatively easy, but with a requirement of much more precision.

So, on to the game, which can be viewed here.

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