Attitude and choices

I found an old scoresheet from 2004. I was almost 13 when I played this game. In today’s era with IMs and GMs at this age, any coach or trainer would take one look at my rating and the quality of my play and assume I have no talent or potential to make it much of anywhere compared to my peers.
Just because you are not a Grandmaster before you are a teenager does not mean you can’t succeed in chess at high levels. You can absolutely have a normal childhood and go to school like everyone else and still make it to the top. Your destiny as a chess player has much more to do with your attitude and your choices than it does with whether you were pulled from school and able to focus on chess full time from a young age or not.

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Glad to see my handwriting is even worse than yours Sam and that is after 40 years of practice :grinning: just as well most games are recorded online these days.