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Old 02-15-2017, 12:38 PM   #451
The Yugoslavian
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

Better than those guys Yusupov played it quite a bit.

I think his book on it (at the time) was *the* authority on the opening.

It's good to see that as soon as you are sure you are going to work on not openings, you can't do anything but think about what other openings you want to play.
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Old 02-15-2017, 01:54 PM   #452
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

Openings is love. Openings is life.
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Old 02-16-2017, 10:41 AM   #453
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

Have a pretty straightforward study plan in mind which I'm gonna try out


1. Just do loads of tactics daily (chesstempo, CT Art, Aargards calculation books, forcing chess move) there's plenty to do


2. Alternate daily between Endgame (Dovretsky Endgame Manual), Middlegame (Strategic Play by Jacob Aargards) and Openings (play out lines against engine on Arena)
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Old 02-17-2017, 11:35 AM   #454
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

Gonna quit going to that chess club for a while.

Lost my game despite getting into my Levenfish prep (I'm black), it doesn't help with 3-4 people talking loudly while I play, nor when one tell me I'm wasting my time playing chess...


My Prep (Black is winning here despite the triple pawn), I later get another double pawn but open my a- file and am crushing (but end up losing in a blunder, forgot how)



Prep Line for those interested: http://www.chessvideos.tv/chess-game....php?id=109657


I think quitting the chess club is gonna be +EV for me and make sure I'm not wasting time...
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Old 02-20-2017, 09:27 AM   #455
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

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Originally Posted by NL Loki View Post
Have a pretty straightforward study plan in mind which I'm gonna try out


1. Just do loads of tactics daily (chesstempo, CT Art, Aargards calculation books, forcing chess move) there's plenty to do


2. Alternate daily between Endgame (Dovretsky Endgame Manual), Middlegame (Strategic Play by Jacob Aargards) and Openings (play out lines against engine on Arena)

Gonna start on this tomorrow, also the middlegame study will be a mix of a few books (e.g. Zurich by Bronstein) and a guess the move approach will be taken.


My round 9 game from the zonal. The guy needed a win, so I played super sharp to give him a chance. I played really quickly and white got a good position but then blundered. I was black.

http://www.chessvideos.tv/chess-game....php?id=109674




White to mate in 3, harder than it looks



My board visualisation still needs alot of work...
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Old 02-23-2017, 11:26 PM   #456
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

So it took me quite a few days just to finish the introduction chapter of Excelling in chess calculation

I was pretty busy lately preparing for uni and cleaning my house, so I'm aiming to pick up the pace now along with other something else every day (endgame, middlegame or opening)

But if the puzzles in this chapter have showed me what's to come, it ain't gonna be easy....


This one left a particularly daunting impression, I was both excited and demoralised doing this puzzle and the calculational difficulties it presented to me, Aargard did say even 2600 would have trouble with it, so I can't feel too bad



This was an endgame study from Yochanan Afek, a well known chess problem composer

It is expected that you don't move a single piece on the board from move 1 to calculate everything





I'll give a demonstration of my thought process and what I still need to improve on.

I saw that 1. b6! is almost necessary and didn't bother to look at other lines like 1. Nc5+ even tho the book briefly mentioned it.
I also thought 1. ... Bf2 was forced and calculated it's variations and didn't look at a few other option which the book also mentioned. Maybe I should've went deeper..

1. ... Bd8 2. Nc5+ Nc8 now b7 isn't available but Bd7#
1. ... Ra7+ (I didn't even consider this) 2. bxa7 Be1+ 3. Kb5 now we can't stop promotion but... f2 4. a8+=Q Kxa8 5. Ka6! making a mating net Qf1+ 6. Bb5 Qf3



7. Bc6+!! WHAT THE F-K Qxc6 8. Nb6+ Kb8 stalemate... as mind blowing as this theme is, I'm pretty sure I've seen quite a few of these in endgame studies.


As disappointed as I am in missing this line, I just have accept I'm not at the level of imagination or visualisation to consider this, even if I've come across a variety of crazy ideas in the endgame


Getting back on track, into the "normal lines"

After 1. b6 Bf2

We have to consider candidates

2. Bb5 Bxb6! 3. Nxb6 Rxa7 0-1 I've seen this

2. Bc6+ Kxc6 3. Ka6 Bxb6 0-1 The book didn't even bother with this line

Now to the ones that the book actually considered: 2. Bd1, 2. Bc2, 2. Bb3

My calculation was quite chaotic and was jumping from line to line trying to compare the difference, but as the book said I should start with Bd1 the most forcing (hitting f3 straight away)


My calculation: 2. Bd1 Bxb6 3. Nxb6 Rxa7 4. Kb5 (have to stick to knight) f2 5. Be2 Ra2 (threatening skewer on the b-file) 6. Bf3+ Ka7 7. Nc8 Kb8 wins 0-1

But I missed 5. Bf3+ Kc7 6. Nd5+ Kd6 7. Ne3 I missed this, I thought only of 7. Bg2 Rg7 and black wins but actually this holds...

As you can see we can't go Ka7 because the rook is there where as if I went 3. f2! back then I would have that Kxa7

So I failed to consider switching the move order with 3. f2 as an alternative to 3. ... Rxa7+ just assuming checking is better because its more forcing, also didn't look at 5. Bf3+ Kxa7! 6. Bg2 Rg8! with Rg5 in mind to win the knight another way!

Now 3. ... f2! 4. Be2 Rxa7 5. Kb5 Ra2 6. Bf3 Ka7!! 7. Bg2 Rg2+ wins the knight 0-1

So Bd1 doesnt work



As i didn't consider 3. ... f2! all my calculations for 2. Bc2 and 2. Bb3 is flawed because 3. ... f2! kills the 2. Bc2 line whereas the 3. ... Rxa7+ 4. Kb5 f2 5. Be4+ Kc7 6. Nd5+ Kd6 7. Ne3 same idea was above Ke5 8. Bg2 Rg7 9. Bf1 Rg1 10. Kc5!! somehow leads to a line that holds, I have no where considered this far ahead

It's super hard uploading a position for every critical moment of the variations but I hope this picture gives a big of an idea of what the themes are:





That leaves Bb3

It survives the 3. ... f2 line easily because of Bc4 and not being able to be harassed by the rook (try to work that out on the board)

The harder line to calculate

2. Bb3 Bxb6 3. Nxb6 Rxa7! 4. Kb5 f2 5. Bc4 Kc7 6. Nd5+ Kd6 7. Ne3 Rb7+ 8. Ka6! Rb1 9. Bd3 Re1 10. Nf1 Kc6 11. Ka5 Kc5 12. Ka4 Kd4 13. Bb5 Rb1 14. Ng3 Ke3 15. Nf1+ Kf4





BTW
we also have to look at the side line
2. Bb3 Kc6 3. Nb8+ Kc5 4. Na6+ Kc6 5. Bd5+! saccing the bishop to fork! a line I didn't even think of lol



I'm not sure if you actually need to have this kind of calculation power to reach 2300 (hopefully not, if 2600s can have trouble with this), but I don't care - I don't like doing anything half way and taking on this kind of challenges seem daunting but exciting at the same time...

So since I've been re-enrolled into university, I have to start finishing my degree to the best of my abilities, that means I will have to self ban for a while from 2p2 when next week begins and not post for a while. I will still be finishing the calculation books and studying chess tho.
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Old 02-25-2017, 06:54 AM   #457
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

So end up going to a friends house to play some chess with a few friends. I haven't played blitz in a while so abit rusty. And it doesn't help that my friend is an FM a particularly good at blitz. Struggled abit, especially in the opening, even though it was 3 0 games, I was able to identify my flaws in some of my lines (my dragon is outdated against the Yugoslav, lack of experience vs the london or queens pawn game d4 without c4 lines) as seeing my weakness in tactical patterns (not long term calculations but more so the tactical and combinative patterns). This serve as a stark reminder to train my lines more against master level opponents (e.g. training engines around 2100-2300 level like Tal System) as well as grind the chess tempo tactics. That's why it's good to have strong friends because they can all help to pull you up. This is probably one of the most underrated area, strong players usually lead to more strong players. Analysing complicated positions with stronger players are more beneficial than club players. That's how it's been in the past, but engines has changed that to some degree. Nevertheless it's still good to befriend strong players.

Gonna just keep with my study and try to accommodate with my uni study schedule. And I'll make sure I do alot of general tactics in addition to calculation/visualisation work, along with other areas of my game (endgame, middlegame, openings).

Ok self banning from 2p2 soon!
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Old 02-25-2017, 10:12 PM   #458
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

Looking forward to the intense tactical training and it's results on my performance!

Self banning from 2p2 tonight
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Old 02-26-2017, 04:37 PM   #459
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

I've been enjoying the thread. I also play the English opening. I'm a class B player looking to improve after a 10 year hiatus. Do you have a collection of your English games online somewhere? Any suggestions on who/what to study regarding the English? I've put the Marin books on the need-to-read list. -ct
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Old 07-11-2017, 03:47 PM   #460
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

Try "The Dynamic English" by Kosten. I've not read the Marin books but this is much shorter and a good introduction to some g3 lines in the English.
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Old 07-12-2017, 09:00 AM   #461
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

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Try "The Dynamic English" by Kosten. I've not read the Marin books but this is much shorter and a good introduction to some g3 lines in the English.
+1. You get to play the Sicilian half the time a tempo up.
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:41 PM   #462
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

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Try "The Dynamic English" by Kosten. I've not read the Marin books but this is much shorter and a good introduction to some g3 lines in the English.
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+1. You get to play the Sicilian half the time a tempo up.
Doesn't the Reverse c3 Sicilian setup (e5 and, in response to g3 - Nf6, c6, d5) allow Black to obtain dynamic equality despite getting an IQP?

In my understanding, when White fianchettoes on g2 in any opening, it's usually useful to play c6 if that's still available, to counter White's clamp on d5. Hence the extra tempo seems unhelpful to White as he announces the fianchetto intention too early.

Last edited by coon74; 07-13-2017 at 01:48 PM.
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Old 07-13-2017, 03:24 PM   #463
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

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Doesn't the Reverse c3 Sicilian setup (e5 and, in response to g3 - Nf6, c6, d5) allow Black to obtain dynamic equality despite getting an IQP?

In my understanding, when White fianchettoes on g2 in any opening, it's usually useful to play c6 if that's still available, to counter White's clamp on d5. Hence the extra tempo seems unhelpful to White as he announces the fianchetto intention too early.
I'll deer to you, for now, but the lead GM of this opening for white, I believe is GM Marin, and you might want to database those games.

Images for above positions went away because someone used 100% of their photobucket.

Last edited by leavesofliberty; 07-13-2017 at 03:35 PM.
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Old 07-13-2017, 04:26 PM   #464
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

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Doesn't [insert opening] allow Black to obtain dynamic equality despite [insert opening imbalance]?
FYP
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Old 07-17-2017, 05:45 PM   #465
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

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Doesn't the Reverse c3 Sicilian setup (e5 and, in response to g3 - Nf6, c6, d5) allow Black to obtain dynamic equality despite getting an IQP?
Yes but not many of your opponents are going to know that/want to play it. Most people play a similar defence to their setup vs 1.d4 when they play against the English. I've only ever seen this played by 2600 GMs so maybe there is a risk that you might get it against a theory hound but it is off set by only having to read 144 pages vs however many pages Marin's multiple volumes are.
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Old 07-17-2017, 05:49 PM   #466
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

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however many pages Marin's multiple volumes are.
I just found out. 1192 pages.
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Old 07-24-2017, 08:15 AM   #467
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

Hi, I’m back from studies/holiday.

To my shock, all the pictures in my thread have been removed. This is part of a new thing at Photobucket where they are charging people $500+ a year to share, essentially holding my images hostage and royally ****ing up this thread that I’ve spent countless hours working on. This is corporate greed for sure. Unfortunately, there is nothing I can do about this, but I would appreciate if people suggest another image sharing site for me to use. As for the images, I ceebz getting them restored on the thread (too much effort) unless I do end up getting FM.

While I was gone, I managed to make some progress in my study.
I did over two thousand one hundred tactical puzzles on Chesstempo, CT ART, Chessity etc, this is still a lot less than what I initially intended, but I’ve already seen some improvements in my tactical awareness (not sure about long term calculation). Got my lichess bullet and blitz to 2100 quite easily and my lichess classical 2200. My chess.com bullet and blitz also got to 2100 (well, the blitz got close until it tanked 200 points after I stopped doing tactics, and it has taken me a few days to recover it back to 2000). I need to get the blitz to around 2350.

I started completely memorising games move by move and I’ve done over 20+ games so far, but it's still well behind the pace I want. Based on my estimation I need to memorise a few hundred games to complete my repertoire. This is done with the help of training on Chess Position Trainer 5.1.

I also started the Yusupov Challenge, I’m aiming to finish all 250 chapters in his ten book series before the end of this year or at least the early part of next year. This will be the core part of my training along with tactics and opening study. It should cover the endgame stuff along with my other books (De Villa’s 100 Endgame, Dvoretsky, Endgame strategy by Mikhail Shereshevsky). I’m only 4 chapters in but can do multiple chapters a day in the early few books tho.





My schedule

I’m trying to do some study daily, even tho I know realistically its hard due to all the work and uni I have.

Tactics

I need to finish the rest of the CT ART, which has over 4000 puzzles left, and they can get quite hard, so I need to get them done first. I want to split my tactics session between morning and night.

Yusupov Challenge

I want to at least do one chapter a day, if not more. It should cover my gaps in overall chess knowledge up to 2300.

Opening

This is a core part of my work, I main use the GM Repertoire for Caro Kann/Semi Slav/Marin’s English.

Although I’m mixing in certain lines from chessbase videos, other books (e.g. Wojo’s Weapons v the QGD and Slav) that I feel are improvements/better practical winning chances over Marin’s line.

I’m using Chess Position Trainer 5.1 to store my lines, chess arena (?) to practice my lines.

I’m also memorising key games from the GM Repertoire book lines. I’ve only done some of the chapters, it's very memory intensive and challenging but I’ve only fully done 1 chapter which took 17 games alone and it wasn’t even the critical line (I initially thought it was). Turns out 11. Bd2 was the most annoying line in the classical variation to deal with, not 11. Bf4. I have a near 0% result in that line in both classical in blitz variants! But a GM has offered to give me some help in those lines, especially with my defensive calculation.

Endgame


Covered by the aforementioned books (De Villa, Dvoretsky, Shereshevsky) but the Yusupov should be enough.

Sparring Partners

After reading an article on the importance of studying with stronger titled players and why people study for years but don’t improve. Having strong IM+ friends help me break bad habits and refresh my play. Just yesterday, a GM told me about using the wrong plan in some pawn structures in my lines.

Video

Some Chessbase and chess24 videos on calculation and similar topics would do me good and give me something to watch nightly before sleep.

Tournaments


I have two upcoming nationally rated open in the next two months, and I want my lines semi ready for them. More on those later.


It's going to be hard to balance everything (with uni, poker and exercise), but I will try my best!
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Old 07-24-2017, 09:51 AM   #468
The Yugoslavian
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

That workload is ambitious to say the least.

I'm likely going to start studying seriously again soon and am partway through the revision/exam orange book. Then have the three green books left. Looks like you will still finish before me though, lol.

Also, I'd be more than willing to be a part-time sparring partner. However, I've always felt I am not what you're looking for. My rating is lower and I don't play main openings so I'm not sure playing me would help in that way either.
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Old 07-27-2017, 02:30 AM   #469
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

Quote:
Originally Posted by NL Loki View Post
To my shock, all the pictures in my thread have been removed. This is part of a new thing at Photobucket where they are charging people $500+ a year to share, essentially holding my images hostage and royally ****ing up this thread that I’ve spent countless hours working on. This is corporate greed for sure. Unfortunately, there is nothing I can do about this, but I would appreciate if people suggest another image sharing site for me to use. As for the images, I ceebz getting them restored on the thread (too much effort) unless I do end up getting FM.
I've used imgur.com, seems embed-friendly
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Old 08-01-2017, 09:31 AM   #470
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

It's been a busy last week, basically out for half of it, but it's the start of August now, so I should be able to focus on chess.

I've done just 3 Chapters (5-7) with a few minor mistakes. I did just 50 tactics puzzles on CT ART.

I did prep on the exchange variation of the Caro Kann, knowing it's reasonably common, decide to get it done before some of the crazier lines.

I have chose a total of 6 games to cover 1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. exd5 cxd5 4. Bd3 Nc6 5. c3 Qc7 and the variety of options at white disposal


I still have clear goals:
- Complete CT ART
- Complete Yusupov Series
- Complete CT ART endgame training (I decided doing puzzles suits me more than just reading)
- Complete my repertoire
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Old 08-03-2017, 08:53 AM   #471
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

Last two days I did just 20 CT ART puzzles, the harder ones were taking me ages and some I couldn't get.

Chapter 8: Centralizing the pieces was good, and I scored good. I definitely could've done better but I rushed it a little bit. But I understood the chapter so it wasn't too hard.

Chapter 9: Mate in two moves was surprisingly tough, I barely passed. I missed tons of stuff (lack of attention/focus, systematic calculation process), so it's definitely a weak spot in my game. I often miss moves and opponents ideas (I do much better in long calculation down one variation then short calculation accuracy involving alot of counter responses). I'll definitely get back to this chapter at some point in the future.

It's been hard working on chess after waking up so late every day. I'll try to make up for this in the weekend.
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Old 08-03-2017, 09:21 AM   #472
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

The mate in two chapters are always surprisingly tough. It's one of the few exercises where I do feel like they get easier and easier. However, it's also easy to just stumble into an "impossible" one somehow that is probably supposed to be easier than the ones you've just solved.
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Old 08-04-2017, 12:59 PM   #473
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

After some thinking, I realised my stubbornness in the way I studied openings. Trying to cover thousand of pages of theory is quite impractical (it look me basically a full month to cover just one chapter where I memorised 17 or so games).

I have to focus on the common lines I'm likely to face first, and instead of going too crazy within a single line, spread out abit, and get as many lines done as possible. Looking through my repertoire, I prioritised what lines to master first...


White

I play English, the main lines I should prepare against (and I've seen them played against me so often):

- QGD set up
- Slav set up
- KID
- 1. ... e5 stuff


Black

1. d4 sideline (Avrukh)

- London System


Semi Slav (Schandorff)

- Botvinnik side lines
- Botvinnik 16. Na4
- Botvinnik 16. Rb1
- Anti-Meran 7. b3
- Anti-Meran 7. g4!? Shirov
- 5. g3
- Exchange Variation


Caro Kann (Schandorff)

- Exchange Variation
- Fantasy Variation
- Two Knights Variation
- ALL the classical lines
- Advanced Variation: Short Variation/Shirov Variation/Positional Line


I'll only memorise the few games that I feel are crucial for the lines...
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Old 08-04-2017, 06:36 PM   #474
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

You seem all over the place and always back at openings. If you are struggling with tactics then I suspect you are struggling with calculating. I would think that at your level these things should be super strong and if you see them as weak they should be your focus. Low hanging fruit and all of that...
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Old 08-05-2017, 12:33 AM   #475
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Re: Road to FIDE master title (FM): Improvement and Motivational Log

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You seem all over the place and always back at openings. If you are struggling with tactics then I suspect you are struggling with calculating. I would think that at your level these things should be super strong and if you see them as weak they should be your focus. Low hanging fruit and all of that...
I definitely try to do tactics daily (in the morning or before sleep), openings is just something else I also have to do.
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