I feel like I've been playing some terrible chess lately, despite my rating continuing to increase. More on that in a future blog post.
The following games were all played in a June Swiss at one of the chess clubs I've joined since moving. As these were played about a month ago, the annotations will be sparser than usual.
A short disappointing draw in a game where I missed some tactical opportunities and could've had a big advantage out of the opening. Not nearly as bad as some of my other games lately.
More laziness when it comes to analysis. I'm trying to get better at managing my time, but that can't be at the expensive of looking at tactics. As this has been an ongoing theme of mine lately, I had a conversation with Dan about it. The gist of it went like this:
Dan: "When you're analyzing potential moves by your opponent, what should you assume?"
SK: "Assume he makes good moves"
Dan: "Right. Now AFTER he makes his move, what should you assume?"
SK: "I guess you shouldn't assume anything".
Dan: "You should assume the OPPOSITE. After he moves, assume his move loses the game. And your job is to try to falsify that assumption."
I've been spending a lot of time assuming my opponent isn't dropping material in the opening and trying to get on with my development so I don't lose time. I definitely consider his threats and make safe moves, but I'm not assuming their move was unsafe. And I've missed some easy wins because of it.
The last game is possibly the only game I've played recently when I feel like I played well start to finish. My first game back to OTB back in April featured a similar game and I was able to make a big improvement vs that game. One of many reasons going after your games afterwards is a good idea. After his 19th move, I immediately knew that capturing was likely the right idea I just had to remember why.
I need to work on my consistency. My two biggest weaknesses right now are time trouble and getting lazy with my analysis. I'm playing "hope chess" far too often in my games and it has ended up costing me probably 100 rating points.