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MACA Chess Horizons Magazine Article
 Cambridge IM Norm Invitational - The Summer of Norm
 IM Hans Niemann
  April 2019

I started out the summer of 2018 with three average tournaments, but I realized exactly what I needed to do and change. I attended a US Chess School camp where Sam Shankland gave a lecture that gave me the motivation to work hard. I can credit my recent success to Sam Shankland's DVDs, which transformed my mindset, focus, and ability to calculate in complicated positions.

My streak of amazing tournaments began at the US Masters, a well-organized tournament with conditions unparalleled by other events. I started the tournament with 4/5 against 5 very strong GMs. I ended the tournament with two draws and two losses in my last four games, but my performance was sufficient for both a GM norm and an IM norm after playing GMs in all 9 rounds.

My next tournament was the Cambridge Summer IM Norm Invitational, held at the Boylston Chess Club. I saw this tournament online a few weeks before it started, and I emailed the organizer. Fortunately, there was a last minute drop out so I was lucky to play in such a great tournament.

I started the tournament with a positional masterpiece, utilizing a better pawn structure and superior pieces to prevail against my opponent’s discombobulated pieces.