The 2nd update from Ritika on her participation in the 2014 World Youth Chess Championship:
By Ritika Pandey
Day 4 – Yesterday I won the second round and I lost the the third round. It was a busy day with two rounds, and almost no spare time between rounds. The second round I won because I obtained a better position. Then I started building potential to attack, and won. My third round was against a Woman Candidate Master (WCM). She played a sharp opening, which was filled with chess tactics. Eventually, I was up a little bit of material. I was focused while I was sitting there, and I didn’t get up for 2.5 hours, then I blundered. After she took advantage of it, I felt like I’d been punched in the gut. The competition is intense, and the security is high. The parents are not allowed to go in the playing area, they can only sit and watch from the risers above. The players must wear a green tag, to show they are allowed in the tournament room. Parents can’t even use the same toilets as the participants. This is all necessary because in these huge international events, people tend to cheat. The top ten boards of each section are broadcasted live.
Day 5 – This morning I went to my coach. He helped me prepare against my opponent,we worked on the entire opening thoroughly. I felt confident and prepared. Then we walked along the beach for a while, then went for lunch. We caught the shuttle to the tournament site then went to the round. I played a WCM from South Africa. We exchanged gifts before round. The gifts are souvenirs from your country that you give to your opponent. She gave me a cool chess pin that I will treasure. The gift that I gve to all my opponents is a souvenir wallet and an American flag keychain. We had a positional game that was long and tedious. My position was growing stronger and I was outplaying her. After three hours, I finally won. Tommorrow I have 2 rounds, I’d better get some rest. I’ll keep you posted.