My methods are different from our main stream. I generally focus on the longer term. So we don't play most local tournaments for ratings or to win. The few exceptions being NAG and National Junior. My emphasis is always on learning. I believe the ratings and wins will come when we have learned enough.
Right until recently we did not even have drawing lines. I believe we learn to win first before we learn to draw.
And with each game we measure. The last Asean and the current World Junior has been educational. We evaluate the games and we ask these questions. What is the technical gap? Where are we stronger or weaker? In what area? What is their gifting and how does it compare with ours? How would we play if we are to meet them on the field?
And we approach these questions with total honesty. No excuses and no fluffs acceptable.
I also do not believe in last minute preparations. This leads to heightened anxiety. And we chart our progress in little steps. We have set small milestones to achieve and we work on them a little at a time most days.
Most of our work has been done by ourselves with little outside help from local "experts". I am very cautious about "experts". And so you have found us playing almost every opening under the stars. We wanted to find out for ourselves what we like or do not like. So we went broad instead of deep initially. And we use online materials and online videos.
The first question I ask about "experts" is do they believe in us and our methods and are they confident themselves. Many come from their ego and instead of helping, try to hide their ignorance from us instead.
So we were very fortunate to find this GM. He is still an active competitor and current in his knowledge. So far we have had 5 lessons. This is what he has done for us in this time. The first thing he did was to find the gaps in our knowledge. He does this by just playing and testing. And then he sends us the material to close that gap.
No hand holding. I like that. Now we are deepening our understanding. The goal is still National Junior. One step at a time.
As for Malaysian Open, our aim for this tournament is rating. Now we want to see where we are with regards to that.