At about 9:15pm last Thursday, I felt like this.
About half an hour earlier, I'd been faced with this position and was feeling decidedly more daft than Daft Punk.
I don't play tournaments, as a general rule. As I've previously mentioned, I prefer shorter sessions, and playing two or three games a day really doesn't appeal. I don't have the time or money to play in long events either. So, the Pimlico Open, played over five consecutive Thursdays, felt like the perfect antidote. I could approach it like a 'serious' series of league matches, just turning up and playing, still reasonably fresh. A very quick time control of G80 + 10s too! Sounds good, right?
Well, yes, it is good. But you still have to turn up and play reasonably well. And try not to be completely outplayed, which is exactly what happened.
As for how I drew, I don't feel that's enormously important. In the initial ending position, my opponent had less than five minutes remaining. Even with a small increment, that's not much, especially considering I had half an hour. Still, I can feel fortunate that my opponent didn't find 58. Kd5 in this position, possibly the most clear-cut of his opportunities.
What is important is how I still felt the pressure of the situation, despite the positive approach I outlined above. I suppose I've come too far to give up who I am. If I'd lost in Round 1 of a 5-round tournament, I could tenderly kiss my chances of winning it and whisper in their ear that I'd be back next year. As it is, 4½/5 will still be good enough. I got lucky.
Tournament Diaries Index