Good preparation is not enough! | Road to GM, Games 48 and 49

Rounds 6 and 7 of the Zadar Open. After winning in rounds 4 and 5, a victory in round 6 would finally mean I had a plus score and a good tournament. But…

I prepared for my opponent for a long time. I have found several key mistakes he often makes and one mistake that could cost him the game.

It was in the Karpov variation of the Caro Kann. I learned how to punish it properly and hoped we would play that. At the board he went into my prep perfectly. I got the dream position and -3 in the position for black. I knew I was winning.

I developed the rest of my pieces and my advantage had decreased slightly, but I was still miles better.

And then it started. A lack of an attacking plan combined with wasting the time on my clock brought me to a position in which I was still better but I had no idea how to materialize on that and I was in zeitnot.

I still had 7 moves until move 40 and reaching the time control (when you are given additional 30 minutes) and I had less than 10 minutes left… Horrible.

I played well, and on move 40, the last move before the time control I made a fair looking move with 30 seconds on the clock. The move turned out to be horrible. My position went from winning to completely equal. What’s even worse I managed to lose it after that somehow. Devastating.

In round 7 I faced a lower rated opponent and won fairly easily against his Phillidor.

I will cover rounds 8 and 9 next. Those last two games were probably my 2 best games at the tournament too. Both were againt higher rated opponent and I made no serious errors:)

#RoadtoGM #ZadarOpen #Chess


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