Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Benchmarking and the snake medicine seller- Part 2.

Part 1. Here.

To put it very bluntly, I find that after benchmarking their knowledge and skill sets, the top Juniors and some of the recently ex Juniors surpasses Li Tian by a very significant amount. The very top Juniors are actually very close to the standards of our local IM's.

So what is going on? Let me give you 2 analogies here. One is from chess.

Now this is what we teach our very young players. In a classical game do not play blitz. How is this pertinent? Now if we tell them that they are all washed out by 15yo, what do you think will happen to them at say age 16, 17, 18, 19, 20 etc. Is the tape in their mind now something like this? Oh my God, I am running out of time. I need to rush this. Are there any shortcuts? Artificially induced anxieties after anxieties. And try to hazard a guess here what the snake medicine seller would now sell to them or their parents.

Actually they have loads of time don't they? Ask IM Goh. What is his age? Is he still trying for his last GM norm? Does he still believe he can or does he believe he was all washed out by 15? If that is the case, then why is he still trying? Or is he?

This is the second analogy. Imagine a greyhound race. There is an electrified rabbit on the side that they all chase. Unknown to the greyhounds, of course, or there wouldn't be a race, the rabbit cannot be caught. It is fixed. And so the greyhounds will run their hearts out chasing this rabbit. And they think they have only up to 15yo to do it. And then they all get punctured.

But hey, why worry? We still have the old greyhounds haven't we? Maybe they haven't run a race in years and years, but so what.

And so the young greyhounds, ie our top Juniors have been knocked out of the race and branded as failures, and the old greyhounds are getting older. And so they shout on the sidelines. Those young greyhounds don't know a thing about chess.

And this goes on for generation after generation of the greyhound race. Or they get banned.

And all the rest of us are so distracted by the rabbit that we don't notice this. The one with the fat numbers but without the knowledge or the skills. And so we forget about the young greyhounds. They are only given one spot to play in International Junior Tournaments, if any, in any one year. They go out alone to be hammered by the young greyhounds overseas who fight in packs and guided by competent experts.

But at least the old greyhounds get to go to SEA games for 2013 right? It's just a free holiday. And we will all shout Malaysia Boleh here till we are hoarse. But deep inside we all know that the old greyhounds cannot run anymore? And the rabbit is the rabbit. The rabbit cannot even play in Malaysia anymore for if he appears in National Close or National Juniors and not win after all that fanfare, the young greyhounds will now know they have all been conned. The rabbit is the rabbit.

I hope you liked the story. But of course what I say cannot be true. The old greyhounds will go to National Close and show us all that they are still Ferrari's and the rabbit will go to National Juniors and hammer the field and show us all that he is indeed the strongest Junior in Malaysia. And I will be so embarrassed that I told this story because Jimmy and Peter will have a field day rubbing it in my face. Only this time I will know that what they say is true. I just don't know anything about chess.

And then I will close down this blog.

But think about the story anyway before I have close down this blog from embarrassment. At least I have entertained you for a few minutes no? For if this story is true then they have a lot to answer for, don't you think?

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