Last weekend, Abe played in Chicago Class chess tournament. I put him playing up one class since Abe, most often, plays better against slightly higher rated players —plays worse against lower rated players. I guess his concentration plays a big roll in his performance. He concentrates more when playing against high rated players; he makes many careless mistakes when playing against low rated players. Moreover, even he loses to high rated players, he will learn more from the experience. I think it is good for his long term improvement.
So he played in the Class A section, unexpectedly, he scored three wins and two draws out of the five games, tied for first in his section. Some people asked me why he did so good, I replied he was lucky. In fact, in the past, it happened to him that he lost all games in a tournament, he had his share of bad luck then. While in this tournament, good luck had been with him.
Good luck or not, most players had a good time. I took a picture before the round two, as you can see, even those kids are having a good time (I think many are excited) waiting games to begin:
Kids are chatting before a round at the chess tournament.
Over the long July 4th weekend, Abe played in the FIDE Continental America’s Amateur Chess Championship. He had a so-so performance with an even score (3.5 out 7).
2011 FIDE Continental America's Amateur Chess Championship
After the first day’s games (he scored 0.5 point out of 2), on the way home, he said he’s winning in the second game, then he made a mistake to take the opponent’s strong piece: a rook in stead of a pawn. After that, Abe said it’s a drawn position. Looked surprised, I asked him “Played like a Child?”
I felt Abe’s not offended since Abe then mentioned Magnus Carsen commented his own lost game to Garry Kasparov “I played like a child” when Magnus was 13.
“I am still a child” Abe added.
Two days later, I have the computer analyzed the game. I asked Abe to have a look at the analysis result: The ending’s not a drawn position, he still has chance to win.
“Oh, the Opposition!” Abe exclaimed after looking at the 1st move.
I remember we watched a video together about pawn endgame (including the technique of Opposition) not long ago.