Thursday, October 4, 2007

Open tournaments stink

I hate open tournaments.

There. I said it. I've been keeping that little thought deep inside for way too long.

For someone with a low rating like me, the first four or five rounds are an utter waste of time. It's only by the final few rounds that I'm even playing people even remotely close to my strength.

In the USA, because they had more players, they were able to split the players up into groups: U1200, U1400, U1600 and so on. That way - in a seven round tournament you at least got to play seven people that were within 200 rating points of your rating.

The only consolation for me is that at least I'm getting the hang of pacing myself and saving my best games for the last few rounds where it really counts.


Phil Bourke said...

I have lost your contact details that you left with me. Can you contact me via email,
Many thanks.

Loomis said...

If you're playing people with much higher ratings than you, try thinking of it as taking a lesson rather than a waste of time. Going in with the idea that it's a waste of time can't be good psychologically. Being realistic that you're probably going to lose is ok as long as your approach is along the lines of maximizing the teaching value of the loss by playing the best possible moves you can find.

happyhippo said...

hello phil,

I agree with loomis in this regard. Try not to go into the tournament thinking of it as a waste of time.

Normally when I face opponents which are higher rated than me, I relish the chance to go all out and try my best and not to worry too much about the result.

What I do find whenever I play opponents higher rated than me is that they tend to teach me lessons, valuable lessons that I can usually take into later games (and against players around my rating).


ScopeOfVision said...

Your reason is why I like the accelerated pairings.

Samurai Pawn said...

How is the training going down under?

Polly said...

I love playing up, even if I get crunched. I feel like the games where I get paired down are waste of time. Loomis and Happy make the same point that I was going to make. Use those losses as an education. Even if you don't have time to look at the entire game with your opponent, if you can get a little feedback about where it went wrong that is helpful.

Endurance is an important, but often ignore aspect of a long chess tournament. There is the mental endurance of getting trough a string of lossses in the early going. Then there is the phyical endurance that is needed to stay sharp as the day or weekend progresses. I have found that my training as a triathlete, cyclist and marathoner has helped me during the later stages of a long game.

Blue Devil Knight said...


The Rise and Shine Good Knight said...

New Post! Anybody have any ideas?

Chess Teacher said...

accelerated pairing can be used to overcome the problem you mentioned