Theo Todman's Web Page
For Text Colour-conventions (at end of page): Click HereStatus Reports - Status: Chess (2020 - March)
Rationale for this ProjectNote last updated: 04/04/2020 00:14:24
- For years I’d been thinking of returning to chess after a very long lay-off; effectively since my school days. Now, it seems, I’ve actually done so.
- For further information, see my Chess Page.
- I intend to play – as and when selected – for the Billericay A & B Teams in the North Essex Chess League (http://www.necl.org.uk/) Divisions 1 & 4 and for the Billericay I Team in Southend & District Chess League (http://www.southendchessclub.co.uk/league/), Division 1. Also, if it is held in the Billericay Chess Club Championship (http://www.billericaychessclub.org.uk/club_championship.html) and any KO competitions Billericay may enter.
- After a decent start in 18Q4, my results have been rather poor, and I lost a bit of confidence towards the end of the 2018/19 season, drawing with – and in one case losing to – a string of weak players. Blunders!
- This season, my results have been terrible, and I had stopped playing even before the whole chess scene (at least “over the board”) went into lock-down mid-March 2020 on account of the coronavirus pandemic.
Summary of Progress during January - March 2020
- I spent 13.5 hours in 20Q1 on this Project, or related work (43.25 hours YTD, where for "YTD" - Year to Date - I mean the (academic) year that commenced in October 2019). That's 26.4% of the planned effort (41.9% YTD). Overall, 2% of my Project effort in the Quarter was directed towards this project (making 3.2% YTD) - as against 6.8% planned (6.7% YTD).
- I spent about a quarter of the time allocated, mainly because of the encroachment of Bridge, which is easier and more fun, but also because of the noted loss of confidence and poor form.
- I played two gradable games in the last quarter, and lost both. I was crushed in the first by a player who turned out to be graded 199, so I decided to carry on for another game, which I lost to someone who looked like a junior-school boy and was graded 72. I’d earlier refused a draw and over-reached myself.
- I’ve been so fed up with the game I’ve put it on ice, and not even played through or recorded these last two games.
- I seem to have two main problems:-
- Firstly, my opening theory is non-existent, and this has resulted in cramped positions as black, or conceding quick equality as white.
- Secondly, in attempting to play in a more open manner than the stodgy and careful approach of my youth, I’ve left myself open to “tactics” that have resulted in the loss of a piece on many occasions. Sometimes these have arisen where I was routinely winning, and just failed to look at what my opponent was threatening.
- There’s no quick fix to either of these.
- The first requires opening preparation. There’s no reason why I shouldn’t do this.
- There ought to be a “quick fix” to the second, but “just concentrate” is easier said than done. It is said that blitz play sharpens your tactics, so I started to try this out – using 10-minute games against human opponents – on Chess.com (https://www.chess.com/) – but have not continued. I need to!
- I’ve purchased three books on general strategy and tactics for the club player – I just need to read them!
- While (subject to the caveat above) I do review my games – see2 my Consolidated Results – I’ve not spent much time on study or training.
- Progress (if any) in the current quarter can be obtained from the relevant section of my Summary Task List.
Chess (Total Hours = 13.5)
- Chess - Admin (Total Hours = 8.75)
- 19Q4 Status Reports (1 hour)
- Billericay Chess Club: Communications, Admin, Grading, etc. (4.75 hours)
- Billericay Chess Club: Travel to Matches (3 hours)
→ See "Chess - Admin" (8.75 hours)
- Chess - Play
- Chess - Billericay Chess Club - Southend League Match (3.75 hours)
→ See "Chess - Playing" (3.75 hours)
- Chess - Training
Plans for the Near Future:
- I don’t want a repeat of the experience of my youth, so need to allocate a serious amount of effort to learn the theory of the game in order to play properly.
- Unfortunately, given a poor run of form, and because there’s no chess to be had over the board, I’ve further reduced the allocation of time at a measly 2 hours / week. Just to keep things ticking over for now while I decide what to do next.
- Why Play Chess: Seriously consider the issues raised by "Ramon y Cajal (Santiago) - On Chess".
- Chess Study:-
→ "Hansen (Carsten) - The Full English Opening: Mastering the Fundamentals",
→ "Ris (Robert) - Crucial Chess Skills for the Club Player: Volume 1",
→ "Ris (Robert) - Crucial Chess Skills for the Club Player: Volume 2",
→ "Sadler (Matthew) & Regan (Natasha) - Game Changer: AlphaZero's Groundbreaking Chess Strategies and the Promise of AI",
→ "Speelman (Jon), Tisdall (Jon) & Wade (Bob) - Batsford Chess Endings",
→ "van der Sterren (Paul) - FCO - Fundamental Chess Openings", and
→ "Willemze (Thomas) - The Chess Toolbox: Practical Techniques Everyone Should Know".
- Chess Training:-
→ Chess.com (https://www.chess.com/) (game analysis & daily 10-minute game),
→ "Chess - Chess - YouTube Videos"
→ Complete review of 2018/19 season's games, and keep up to date with those of the current season.
- Chess Play: Participation4 if and when play resumes in Billericay Chess Club:-
→ Club Nights
→ NECL matches
→ Southend League matches
→ Consider on-line club play
Summary of Progress to Date (since October 2018)
- I have now produced statistics similar to those for Bridge, my Consolidated Results. Follow the PGN links for the actual games.
- Also, see what comes “free” with The ECF Grading Database (http://www.ecfgrading.org.uk/new/menu.php).
- Enough of an indication of progress has been given above, though see also my Chess Page.
- Setting this page up was a useful advance in 19Q2, when I enabled the use of pgn4web Board Generator (http://pgn4web-board-generator.casaschi.net/board-generator.html).
- I found out how to link to analysis on Chess.com (https://www.chess.com/) in 19Q4.
- This used to say "full participation", but I've let the team captain know that my focus is now on Bridge, and that - while I'm willing to "fill a board" - I don't want to take the place of anyone more enthusiastic.
- In any case, there's now no over the board chess to be had.
Text Colour Conventions
- Black: Printable Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2020
- Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2020
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Timestamp: 29/05/2020 11:19:15. Comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.