Thursday, December 20, 2007

Steven Tennant, I am calling you out

Last weekend, I was relaxing after my Orland Scholastic with my good friend Theo Poulos and NM Dr. Steven Tennant. To those of you that don't know Steve, let me give you a quick rundown.

Steve is an amazingly talented player who was a state champion in the 70's, who even has a few GM scalps to his credit. He hasn't played that often for many years due to a grudge that he holds with the ICA, which for everyone's sanity I won't recap here. Steve is brilliant to a fault, the fault being that he can be very rigid in his ideas and doesn't play well with others. Still I feel loyalty to Steve as every week in the mid to late 80's he would show up every week at the Orland Chess club mercilessly whupping us, and was very responsible for turning many of us teenage punks into experts or masters.

Well, Theo was predicting my return to tournament play in 2008 and that I would gain the roughly 95 rating points to get my long awaited master title. Steve matter of factly stated, "I doubt it". When I inquired as to why that was he explained that "if you don't make master by age 22, you won't ever do it". While he is correct that the difficulty level goes way up, due more to real life stresses and less time for study, it is not such an oddity for a player to make master after the age of 22.

So the thing to do in order to prove Steve wrong would be to play a match against him. So even though Steve has a lifetime record of greater than 90% against me, I say, "Bring it!" I am challenging him to a match for sometime in 2008. I plan on hopefully updating this story when Steve accepts my challenge, and announcing the date when it becomes available.

Time to start training.

Glenn

12 comments:

Tom Panelas said...

Glenn,

This is pretty exciting. An excellent way to liven things up in the local chess scene.

My money's on you making master.

Tom

HubDiggs said...
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glennpan said...

What is in it for Steve? Well, I will put up a prize fund for one thing. It is kind of ironic that despite being nearly 100 points lower rated, I stand to lose more rating points than him for losing the match.

The other thing is, if you make a bold statement about someone's game or lack thereof, you better be ready to defend your opinion if you get challenged. To Steve's credit, he has accepted the match.

I think my blog tonight will be on a similar topic.

Hubdiggs,

I think beating masters in matches is a far more impressive way to make master than getting some random pairings in a big swiss. Matches are the preferred way to determine world championships, why not use them on a local level?

HubDiggs said...
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LWeber said...

This sounds to me like an exciting event. Big swisses are fine, but must we always confine ourselves to the same old same old? Glenn helped wheel out that dinosaur, the round robin, several years ago, and it seems to have caught on in Illinois quite nicely. Now he is wheeling out another relic, match play!

It would be very exciting, I think, if this, too, caught on, and there were a number of slow time control matches featured prominently throughout the state. Matches, like round robins, are excellent tests of strength and excellent ways to improve your game.

I am looking forward to seeing this event.

HubDiggs said...
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HubDiggs said...
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HubDiggs said...
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glennpan said...

HubDiggs,

First, in fairness to Steve, he just offered his opinion in a conversation he was involved in that he did not think I would make 2200 because of age. Knowing Steve for as long as I have, I know that he was not intending it as an insult.

Having said that, without getting into the whole machismo thing, it is hard for him to justify saying that I can't make a level that he has achieved and then refuse to back that up by playing.

Len brings up kind of a cool point, we should have something like the Illinois match play championships.

HubDiggs said...
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HubDiggs said...

glennpan and lweber,

May you be praised!

You guys are the coolest and best!

NM Petros Karagianis said...

Glenn-

Is this match still on? When?

-Pete

p.s. Colias info?