Since Warren has taught me how to play chess, he decided it was finally time for me to play in my first rated Chess Tournament. We traveled to the North Georgia Chess Center that is run by Joe Couvillion and his wife. They have a rated tournament every Friday night.
Upon first walking in the center I noticed lots of young chess prodigies waiting patiently to see who will be walking away with the bragging rights of the night! Although I have most of them beat in age alone I know much better to think that my wisdom will help me conquer their young chess minds! My first opponent which I will with hold the age to help save my “pride” was a 1400+ rated player. Not being an expert in the rating system I wasn’t quite sure what that meant. Then 20 minutes later I had a much better idea. 1400+ means she could checkmate me in less than 20 moves, beautifully use opening moves that not only threaten pieces with a single attack but also double and triple attacks while keeping each of her pieces carefully protected. Wow the game left me speechless especially to find out later that she has only been playing for a year and is not even out of middle school! I shook her hand congratulating her on a great game. To her I was just another pawn helping her achieve a better rating.
I had plenty of time before my next match would start seeing how my first opponent didn’t need her full hour to bet me. When it was time for round two I found out that I would be playing a 1000+ rated player and this girl was still in elementary school. She was stiff competition and when I made one blunder I knew it was the end of the game for me under 50 moves and 40 minutes later she made her final move with this look of determination and a slight smile as she said “checkmate”! Wow I can’t even express the amount of pride that I felt for both of the girls that claimed their victory.
My final match was against a young boy who was only five years old. He was the youngest player in the center that evening, but that didn’t keep him from making clean opening moves activating his pieces, while he also notated each move he made on his own score pad, and concentrated on each one of his moves. He resigned the game after I captured his queen and I was able to walk away with one victory that night. Secretly I know he was beyond tired and was just not interested in finishing the game but it does make me wonder if he had not resigned what the actual outcome would have been:)
All in all I had a great evening and enjoyed meeting new players of all ages. I also have a lot more perspective of what I need to do to help better my overall chess game.