Sunday, January 11, 2009

Had A Great Game Last Night

Last night at about 7:00 PM I realized that I had not played my game for the day.   I try not to play at night because I am usually too tired to do well, and it also rams me up so much that I have trouble sleeping, which is exactly what happened last night.

I tend to prefer auto match, so I tried to use it, but it was not getting me a game in a timely fashion, so I put up an offer in the English Game Room on KGS instead.  I didn't have long to wait for someone to take it.   Much to my pleasure, the game was taken by someone who I had not played myself, but who my study partner had played previously.  My study partner has spoken very highly of this guy, and so I was very pleased to be playing him.

I had set two hours of basic time, and was hoping for a slow game.   My 6k opponent started off nice and slowly.  I followed suit.   After a bit of time had passed I realized how calming and pleasant the game was at this slow pace.  We were chatting away about our common friend, and my opponent's go club.   We were also talked about my lessons with Yilun Yang.   I invited my opponent to come and observe one of the reviews of my lessons that I do in the Wings Go Club room on a regular basis.   It turns out that his club meets one of the days that I do my weekly reviews, and he asked if the whole club could attend.   I told him I would be happy to have them.  He said that he would be able to put the review up on the wall for everyone to see.   How cool is that?

The game felt like a cross between a club game where we were socializing, and a tournament game where I was counting the board regularly and really trying hard to win.  I was doing both of those things, and enjoying myself very much.  Stylistically, I would characterize the game as one of my typical peaceful and solid games.   This was indeed a "Terri" game.  My player was very peaceful as well.  There was an attempted invasion shortly before the end, but that was a necessary try on his part.  I felt as if I could have played tenuki in the middle of the invasion a few times, but I was not about to tempt fate, having been caught in damezumari so many times in the past,  so I matched him move for move until he gave up on the invasion.

Maybe my mantra, "strangers are for play, and friends are for review" is wrong after all.

Anyway, I was really careful with this game.  I counted well enough that I could afford to make a real chicken move at the end.   I suppose that is bad form, but my feeling is that if I know I am winning by a big enough margin, why not avoid any possibility of trouble?   My opponent resigned the game just before scoring, which is fine with me.   It was not a large enough margin that I would have bothered to do that myself, but everyone has their own style.  In a sense, it is a way of saying, "I don't need to be shown I've lost."

The dan player who had been observing said it was a good game for me to have Yang review, and I have him look at it on Thursday.

One thing I learned from this game is that I am, in fact, capable of slowing down online.    I think that I allow my opponents to set the pace.    I must stop doing this.   If the time is there to use, it doesn't matter if they want to use it or not.  I do, and I should, regardless of what they do themselves.

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