11. huhtikuuta 2011

Player of April: Nuno Maltez

Learning chess moves

I don’t really remember who taught me the moves, but I remember playing with some friends and with my father when I was 9 years old or something. Then, when in high school, I remember reading some books and I played a lot against the computer (and the machines were so slow I even won!).

How often do you play chess?

I used to play every day, even if it was just one blitz game on FICS. But real classical chess, I play like 20–30 rated games a year.

Joining a chess club

I only joined a chess club in college: AAC in Coimbra, Portugal. It’s still my current chess club in Portugal. We were second on the national championships last year, even with me playing in the 6th board and destroying the team average rating.

Achievements in chess

In team chess, that 2nd place, for sure. Individually, I won the regional championship of Coimbra 2 or 3 times. I really don’t remember the exact number. But that’s about the only thing I ever won.

Getting a FIDE rating (around 1800) and then going over 2000 was also satisfying.

A bitter loss / The worst blunder

I also don’t really like to talk about my losses :)

Once in time-trouble in a balanced but wild position I left my queen hanging for 2 or 3 moves; then I finally saw that it was hanging and shaked my head in disbelief... and that was the real blunder: only then my opponent thought – "what’s wrong?" – also finally noticed it and captured the queen.

The most precious scalps

My win against GM Bellon Lopez in Figueira da Foz, 2005. He just speculated too much. When the game ended I asked him if he wanted to analyse and he replied that he didn’t like to analyse games he lost.

Opening repertoire / Playing style

I need dynamic positions and hate cramped passive ones with no good active plans. So my repertoire was about getting f2-f4 or f7-f5 played ASAP: King’s gambit/Vienna, Sicilian GP, Dutch as black with some Latvian and Jaenish as well. The Sicilian GP gave me a lot of nice victories over the years.

Your favorite time control

Standard games with increment. I really like to think about my moves and increment helps me to manage my time.

Your motto in chess / Your chess idols

I have no idols (in chess or any other aspect of life). But I agree with Lasker’s view that chess is a fight.

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