Saturday, 21 May 2016

New all time high ratings and a busy-busy schedule.

I’ve meant to write this post for five days. Finally, today I have time to get around to it. The point is not so much to say how busy I am (ok maybe a little bit), but rather to document well what is going on with my chess progress. I have been working on a business plan for Chessable, so as to raise investment and bring the chess community even more kick-ass learning tools. I have been working on my Master's dissertation and a few essays. Tried sneaking in a few programming updates onto Chessable when I could. And other than that, a bunch of personal life stuff has kept me busy. Regardless of all that, chess remains an important priority, and I’ve tried to do what I can to maintain my chess skills. Time to report on what has happened:
In the last two weeks, I achieved a few chess milestones, with no studying aside from practicing openings (and a few endgames) on Chessable. I would say, averaging 5–10 minutes a day at most. This has helped me reach a rating of 1,854 in Blitz chess online. To put things in perspective, exactly three years ago I one day clocked in at 1,131. That is a 700 points rating difference! I was euphoric, and then I got matched up with a WFM on blitz chess. Her FIDE rating about 2,100. I lost my games against her and went on a bad run, stabilizing around 1,750. Regardless of the slight loss (due to focusing on rating and not playing well), I was very happy with my on-line Blitz rating and went onto the 39th Hampstead Chess Congress with confidence.
I finished the Congress with a performance rating of 2,023. My highest as of yet. This means that my FIDE rating will break 1,900 for the first time, it should be a shiny 1,913. For a breakdown of my games on the tournament, see the FIDE tournament card here: Kramaley, David June 2016 FIDE Individual Chess Calculations
Obviously, I have failed to reach the goal I set myself, 2,000 FIDE by April 2016. However, considering how busy I have been, I am happy enough with 1,900, it's a step closer to 2,000. Where to next? Well, studying the openings further with Chessable is definitely something I will maintain. Other than that, I really think it is time to improve my endgame technique. How exactly that will be achieved is still a mystery. I will either use Chessable to memorise De La Villa's 100 Endgames you must know or find another way that perhaps is more useful to me right now. Or maybe both, needless to say, the endgame is what I should be focusing on and I will try to make time for that before the next tournaments.

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