Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Bad, Bad, Bad Mistake

Last night, I finally had a focused tournament game. I played against a 5k. He opened high chinese, I played one of the Chinese counter strategies.

When I played D7, I expected him to take E4, but he decided to split the top instead. I happily took E4 myself, and this position felt good for W. Although I have to admit that I my positional judgement is not strong enough to say that for sure.

He replied E5, and of course, I should have played the outside hane at F5, for which this result is to be expected.

This seems an ok result for W. But instead of that outside hane at F5, I made a bad mistake and played the inside hane at D5. Bad, bad, bad mistake! Very hasty. This was one of those moves where you click, stop, and stare in horror at the board. Where you get that sinking feeling of 'OMG, why the heck did I play that move???' in your stomach. This is the result I got. Bad for W. Sigh. I still can't believe I did that. Not like I didn't know it should be the outside hane. I end up with this sucky result (12 @ 7 )

I was very annoyed with myself. I had only one person to blame for this position, and that was me. I sighed and went on with the game, expecting to lose, but wanting to fight back and play good moves the rest of the game.

We played and we played, and we played. He got a huge moyo, I got a somewhat smaller moyo. I tried to grab points where I could and play actively. Still, I counted myself behind. Not by a huge amount anymore, but behind nonetheless. We were so far in the game already that I decided to just play it out, it seemed a shame to resign when there were only 20 or 30 moves left. I tried to catch up as much as I could in end game.

We played one of those manhood ko's, which I thought wasn't going to make much difference in the outcome. Still, this being an iron man tournament after all, I was committed to winning it. We found ko threat after ko threat, until he played away from the ko, even although he still had a ko threat left. I filled the ko, we both passed and I watched the counting. OMG!!! W+1.5 !!! That was quite a surprise. I clearly need to work on my counting. I tend to overestimate my opponent, while I under-estimate myself. Which doesn't impact games with a somewhat bigger margin, but in this case, it clearly did impact the result I counted.

I must have gained in yose, I will have to sit down and look at this game today. I was tempted to resign a few times during this game, but I am happy that I managed to get back into the game instead.

This morning, things didn't go so well. I managed to turn my stones into an earth worm which was just pathetically thrashing around. After a while I resigned in disgust, I had made too much of a mess. Yes, I could have lived, but with a horrible stone efficiency and I had really hurt two of my other groups. It was too painful to continue the game.

We are halfway there, ten games down, ten to go. Yes, this tournament is insanity, but I have to admit that I enjoy playing in it and trying to beat the challenge of playing as many games as I can. Not to mention the fact that I have played a nice variety of opponents.

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