My first post in a couple of months. I've decided to take a break from online chess for a while, as it was getting to be more of a chore, and less of an enjoyable experience. Other interests were also pulling me away. However I've still been playing over the board chess, which I tend to enjoy more.
Since I last wrote, I've played five rated games. I lost to David Heelan of Derby & Mickleover B in the Derbyshire Plate competition for Spondon C, a tough game for us. I had a nice win against Alan Chancellor of Derby & Mickleover C, also for Spondon C, this time in the league. I lost to Howard Bradbury in round 5 of the Derbyshire Individual Championship, and lost to John Wheatley for Spondon D against Foremarke B. The last game I had a lack of motivation, I guess I was at the bottom of a dip in interest.
Last night I played David Brown for the first time, in round 6 of the Derbyshire Individual. I was expecting to get smashed early on as he is much higher rated, but had a good game, and made him work hard for his win.
[Event "Derbyshire Individual 2007/08"]
[White "David Brown"]
[Black "Dean Madden"]
1. e4 d5 2. exd5 Qxd5 3. Nc3 Qa5 4. Bc4 Nf6 5. d3 c6 6. Bd2 Qc7 7. Nge2 Bf5 8. Ng3 Bg6 9. Qf3 e6 10. Bf4 Bd6 11. Bxd6 Qxd6 12. O-O Nbd7 13. Qe2 O-O-O 14. Rfe1 Rhe8 15. Nce4 Bxe4 16. dxe4 Ne5 17. Bb3 g5 18. Rad1 Qc7 19. Qe3 Rxd1 20. Rxd1 Rd8 21. c3 Rxd1+ 22. Bxd1 Nc4 23. Qe2 Ne5 24. b3 Kb8 25. Qe3 h6 26. h3 Qd7 27. Be2 b6 28. f4 Ng6 29. fxg5 hxg5 30. Qxg5 Qe7 31. Qe3 Nd7 32. Nf1 Nde5 33. Qd4 c5 34. Qd2 Kb7 35. Nh2 f6 36. Qh6 Qf7 37. Bh5 Qf8 38. Qh7+ Ne7 39. Nf3 Nd3 40. e5 Nxe5 41. Nxe5 fxe5 42. Qe4+ Nc6 43. Bf3 Qd6 44. h4 Kc7 45. Qxc6+ Qxc6 46. Bxc6 Kxc6 47. h5 1-0
When I play the Scandinavian against stronger opponents, I always tend to feel I'm going to get over-run in development, but usually as in this case I got a good position into the middle game:
Ian Gregory told me before the game that David is excellent in the endgame, so I was happy to get a relatively unbalanced position with my knights in the middle. What would have been best now would be to attack with my queen, e.g. Qc5, but I played more passively, too respectful of my opponent and worried of phantom weaknesses. I'm always surprised afterward to realise that I had the advantage in parts of the game, when during the game I feel I'm doing badly.
From around moves 27 to 36, I was quite short of time to meet the time control, this has become more of an issue of late in my game. I eventually reached move 36 with about 30 seconds left on the clock, but by then I was down a pawn. I'm trying to figure out what is causing my time trouble, I think a lot of it is hesitancy, worrying that I'm missing something. A lot of time I'll decide on a move, but then reconsider lots of other candidate moves before going back to the original move I'd decided on.
He forced off an exchange of the remaining pieces, and the resultant end position gave him an unstoppable passed pawn:
I suppose since more club members are reading the blog, I should hold back on any controversies. But I had a wry smile to myself when someone made a total en-prise blunder during an important game, 20 minutes or so after intentionally distracting me and my opponent during our important game. What goes around comes around?