Exploring Chess Openings

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Every chess season, I try to improve my knowledge of opening theory by trying out a few new openings. Opening theory is just one aspect of chess, and frankly, some might consider it the least important, compared to the Middle Game and End Game. The idea is, when playing with players of similar strength, the game is usually decided in the End Game (and sometimes the Middle Game). But my problem is that against tougher opponents, I usually find myself at a disadvantage out of the opening, and end up with an inferior end game. Some preparation in opening theory simply should not be dismissed. More

Preparing for 2013/2014

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Now that the 2012/2013 Kingston Chess Club season is over, I have approximately 4 months to prepare for the start of the next season in September. As part of that preparation, I’ve compiled my games against the 5 top players at the chess club for 2012/2013 (well four actually, since it excludes me):

Opponent

CXR Rating

All-time Club Record

2012/2013 Club Record

Peter Sibbald

2055

2 wins, 2 losses, 1 draw

1 win and 1 loss

Jay Serdula

1802

1 win, 2 losses, 1 draw

1 win and 1 loss

Dave Gordon

1713

8 wins

5 wins

Sid Anjilvel

1708

3 wins and 2 losses

1 loss

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End of the 2012/2013 Chess Season

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The 2012/2013 Kingston Chess Club season is over😦

We had the end-of-year party last Monday, but my video camera broke, so I wasn’t able to take any videos. I did take some pictures of my trophies after getting home though, here they are on my mantel (the keeper trophies):

2013-05-04_KCC_Trophies

Full results are on the Kingston Chess Club website. I’ll be looking forward to next season, since we’ve also solidified the list of events for next year as well. And 2 of the 4 tournaments will be divided into sections, meaning I’ll be able to play with tougher players. More

Premature c5 break in the Caro-Kann

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So I lost my final Round 5 game of the 2013 Azroy Kandan Spring Open to Sid Anjilvel. We played the Advanced Variation of the Caro-Kann. I had a comfortable position out of the opening, after an early exchange of the light square bishops on move 4. But I think I was complacent in my approach, which resulted in a blundered pawn (and a lost center) on move 10.

Despite the early blunder (which I should have totally avoided), I think I took the wrong attitude towards the game. I was looking to equalize quickly, by regaining the lost pawn. And this only helped my opponent who tried to simplify the position by exchanging pieces. And even though I was able to regain the pawn, I was lost positionally toward the end game.

Instead, after losing the pawn, I should have played to my strength, which is to draw out the game in a closed position, and leave more pieces on the board. I think that would have given me more opportunities. By trying to regain the pawn, I merely accelerated the encounter into a winning end game for White. More

London System Game Commentary

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So I’ve finally prepared my commentary for my recent game against Peter Sibbald. You can view it here:

http://azroykandan.com/PeterSibbald.html#game5

I will now need to prepare against my next and final opponent for this year’s 2013 Azroy Kandan Spring Open, starting with my list of games against Sid Anjilvel. Our previous encounters have been filled with blunders, on both sides. My current KCC tournament record with him is 4-1, with my most recent game being a loss. It’s time for payback!

Playing the London System

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A surprising win today against Peter Sibbald. After learning to play against the London System in an effort to beat Dave Gordon, I decided to give the London System a punt as White. And strangely, I was able to get a small advantage after Black took the poisoned b2 pawn with the Queen. Still, it wasn’t a decisive win, and there were many possible lines after Black had to sacrifice a knight for 2 pawns (to avoid losing the queen completely). I will annotate the game later, and add it to my collection of games against Peter Sibbald. More

Playing against the London System

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Despite my preparation, I didn’t manage to get a huge advantage against the London System. But it was a reasonable game. The first 7 moves were as I had prepared, but White surprised me with a Queen exchange on move 8.

With the Queens off the board, it was more of a positional game, but I had plenty of counterplay as Black. In the end, White made an error on move 27, losing a pawn, and subsequently losing the game. It was still a good game, and I learned a lot using the “Anti London System” response. More

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