22 September 2009

Two Types of Losses

I stepped through the 20 lost games in Learn from Your Losses? and discovered that they fell naturally into two categories:-

  • Games where I thought I had reasonable chances, and
  • Games where I was never really in the game.

Some games fell on the borderline between the two categories, but after a little reflection I determined that I was never really in those games either. It just took a little longer for my opponent to secure a definite advantage.

A little more reflection convinced me that the games in the first category were lost somewhere in the middle game. As for games in the second category, I had an inferior game already in the opening. The 20 games split evenly with 10 games in each category. Of the 10 games where I was worse in the opening, I had White in three of them, which is definitely cause for concern.

I haven't looked at my draws yet, but they could also be categorized three ways:-

  • Games where I squandered a definite advantage,
  • Games which were even from start to finish, and
  • Games where I overcame a definite disadvantage.

The critical moments in most of the drawn games would have occurred in the endgame. I also suspect that the frequency of each category would be in the order I've given them. In other words, my most common type of draw is where I squander an advantage.

Looks like I have some work to do if I want to eliminate some of my chronic weaknesses.

1 comment:

Polly said...

My losses seem to fall in three categories:

Games that I was winning, and blundered.
Games that I had reasonable chances.
Games where I was totally outplayed.

I suspect if I look at the games where I had reasonable chances, I'd probably draw the same conclusions that you did.

I hate those games where I was clearly winning and tossed away the win because I blundered in time pressure, overlooked a threat, or got overconfident and lost focus.