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27.08.2015 16:53 New names top Russia’s chess championship as a seven-time winner flops
During the USSR’s golden decades of chess supremacy the annual Soviet chess championship was a major event keenly followed by players worldwide. Its winners included the legends Mikhail Botvinnik, Boris Spassky, Mikhail Tal, Anatoly Karpov and Garry Kasparov. It often lasted a month and up to 20 rounds and it was played before packed audiences in Moscow, Leningrad or Kiev. Combative, tactical games, opening novelties and creative ideas abounded. This week’s 2015 Russian championship provided a low-key contrast. The country’s only top-10 grandmasters, Vlad Kramnik and Alex Grischuk, were absent, two-thirds of the games were drawn and the venue was the distant town of Chita in Siberia, close to the Chinese border. Peter Svidler, seven times chess champion, was among the favourites but he was crushed early in this week’s puzzle and ...
26.08.2015 21:14 Dragon Sicilians
New ideas both good and bad!
25.08.2015 19:52 Woulda, coulda, shoulda — mourning chess matches that never came off
The history of chess is full of wished-for matches that never came off. Morphy never got a chance to challenge Staunton on his celebrated trip to Europe. World War I helped torpedo a match between world chess champion Emanuel Lasker and the star-crossed Polish great Akiba Rubinstein, his strongest rival. This year marks the 40th anniversary of perhaps the greatest missed opportunity of all, when Bobby Fischer, feuding with organizers over the terms of the match, resigned his world title rather than face his 24-year-old Soviet challenger, Anatoly Karpov. The first titleholder by default, Karpov went on to prove himself a worthy chess champion, holding on to the crown for a decade and compiling perhaps the greatest tournament record in history. Perhaps eager to establish his bona fides, Karpov broke with the practice of many other chess champions — including Fischer ...
23.08.2015 18:07 Wire to wire: Gata Kamsky dominates the Washington International chess tourney
It was a wire-to-wire wipeout as U.S. GM Gata Kamsky dominated the fourth annual Washington International open chess tournament in Rockville last week. The premier section attracted an impressive roster of nine grandmasters, but Kamsky bolted out of the gate with four straight wins and never looked back, finishing a full point ahead of the field and taking home $4,000 with a 7-1 result. Indian GM Arun Prasad Subramanian, defeated by Kamsky in Round 3, still had a chance to tie for first but lost to Israeli GM Michael Roiz in the ninth and final round. The two settled for a tie for second at 6½-2½. In the Under 2200 section, experts Franco Moncera Jose of Virginia and Ziwen Zhou of Pennsylvania shared the honors at 5½-1½. One of Kamsky's most impressive wins came on the Black side of a Dutch Defense against IM Andrew Tang in ...
21.08.2015 13:05 Open Sicilians
Exceptional fighting games!
20.08.2015 15:26 Daring Defences
A bumper month
19.08.2015 17:52 Watch Bobby Fischer Enact His Own Mental Chess Match In Exclusive 'Pawn Sacrifice' Featurette
Bobby Fischer is one of the 20th century's most celebrated sportsmen. The brash American chess prodigy became an international superstar, cemented in a Cold War confrontation with Soviet chess champion Boris Spassky that doubled as a political ploy between the sparring nations. In a new "Pawn Sacrifice" featurette exclusive to The Huffington Post, the upcoming film's stars -- including Tobey Maguire, who portrays Fischer -- and director Edward Zwick ("Legends of the Fall," "Blood Diamond") highlight their approach to the grandmaster's story of arrogance, paranoia and turmoil. Written by Steven Knight ...
19.08.2015 17:18 Nimzo, Benoni
Novelties from the British Championship
18.08.2015 15:24 Queen's Gambit, Slav
A Catalan special
17.08.2015 13:12 French Defence
The Classical, a major battleground
10.08.2015 18:25 Jonathan Hawkins is British champion after victory in blanket finish
Jonathan Hawkins emerged as British chess champion at Coventry on Friday night after a tense final round which began with only half a point covering the eight leaders. Hawkins, 32, from Consett, Durham, nicknamed “The Hawk”, was joint-champion last year and has become popular with amateur fans d...
10.08.2015 08:51 English, Flank
Heavyweight battles in the Symmetrical
08.08.2015 10:49 Anti-Sicilians
An impressive month for White!
06.08.2015 17:22 For summer's dog days, keeping chess games short and sweet
With the mercury rising and attention spans wilting, we take our traditional midsummer break from rigorous opening analysis or tedious endgame play to focus on some lighter August fare — a collection of chess miniatures taken from recent tournament play. One would think that, given the rise of dat...
03.08.2015 17:52 Caro Pirc Alekhine
A variety of openings and ideas
03.08.2015 17:18 Czech King Walks into Chess History
Walking is the best way to see the Czech capital, Prague. There is even the Royal Route based on coronation procession of 1458, connecting the Old Town with the Prague castle. The first official world chess champion Wilhelm Steinitz, born in Prague, based his gambit in the 1860s on a magical stroll ...
01.08.2015 14:33 d-Pawn Specials
A topsy-turvy update this month!
29.07.2015 18:41 A Romantic chess opening gets a modern revival
It was the signature opening of chess's 19th century Romantic Era, but has become a rare visitor to modern tournament chess. Paul Morphy used it for some of his greatest wins, Bobby Fischer claimed to have refuted it, and even today, some key lines remain a subject of intense theoretical dispute. Th...
26.07.2015 18:46 China strengthens bid for world chess crown as Ding Liren wins key match
China is on the verge of gaining its first ever chess player in the world top 10. Despite winning the two premier team competitions, the 2014 Chess Olympiad and the 2015 world team championship, China’s grandmasters, eight of them with elite ratings above 2700, have until now peaked at the top 20-...
21.07.2015 17:37 Liang, Eswaran take the honors at U.S. junior chess events
The future of American chess was on display as the country recently crowned its male and female junior chess champions, with rising Indian-American stars taking the honors in both events. New Jersey IM Akshat Chandra, 16, is the new U.S. junior chess champion, capturing a title once held by such sta...
19.07.2015 10:00 King Pawn
Novelties from the very best players in the world!
18.07.2015 12:16 King's Indian
The latest theory
12.07.2015 18:52 Brilliant Start of Chess Summer
Fabiano Caruana's outstanding victory at the Dortmund chess tournament, a U.S. rating record and a magnificent king's hunt by the Chinese chess wizard Wei Yi marked the first days of summer. Caruana became eligible to play for the United States just before the start of the traditional tournament in ...
08.07.2015 18:26 Maghami doubles up as D.C. International, World Open chess tournaments come to town
Crystal City just had a golden moment as two of the best open tournaments on the American chess calendar took over the close-in Virginia suburb for the past two-plus weeks. We have to count GM Ehsan Ghaem Maghami, the first Iranian ever to achieve the game's top title, the fortnight's big winner as ...
02.07.2015 18:36 Walter Browne’s genius lives on in great chess games
Suddenly and far too soon, America lost one of its colorful and most combative chess champions with the passing of six-time national champion GM Walter Browne last week at the age of 66. The Australian-born, Brooklyn-reared chess star — Browne attended Bobby Fischer's Erasmus High and, like Fische...
29.06.2015 20:35 Topalov on Top of Norway Chess 2015
The world chess champion Magnus Carlsen was in free fall, losing game after game at the beginning of the Norway Chess 2015 in Stavanger, one of the three tournaments of the newly founded Grand Chess Tour. Failures of famous chess players attract as much attention as their successes. Misfortune was b...
24.06.2015 18:02 Norway Chess 2015: Is it too late for Magnus Carlsen?
World chess champion Magnus Carlsen surely has no chance to catch Veselin Topalov, writes Malcolm Pein. Normal service was resumed in one respect, as Magnus Carlsen notched up his first victory at Norway Chess. But the world chess champion surely has no chance to catch Veselin Topalov, whose incredi...
19.06.2015 17:50 Magnus Carlsen disappoints in early rounds of Grand Tour in Stavanger
Magnus Carlsen has got off to a dire start with two defeats at the $1m Grand Tour in Stavanger. The world chess champion lost his first round to Veselin Topalov with the white pieces at move 60 in a winning position through misunderstanding the time limit, then saw his previously impregnable Berlin ...
16.06.2015 18:15 Chess at the Olympics?
The IOC does recognise chess as a sport, but will it be accepted at Tokyo 2020? Chess and Bridge are among 26 sports that have applied for inclusion in the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. The Additional Event Programme Panel will determine a shortlist to be announced on June 22, with a final decision m...
13.06.2015 23:24 Glenn Flear draws plaudits for performance in French national league
The solitary Englishman competing in this week’s French team finals made his mark on the chess event by an elegant 21-move miniature plus a surprise victory over a former world No3. France’s national chess league is the third strongest in the world after the German Bundesliga and the Russian tea...
10.06.2015 19:08 England up to ninth in Fide rankings despite lack of strength in depth
England have advanced to ninth place among 174 countries in the global chess body Fide’s June 2015 ratings, which are headed by Russia, China, Ukraine and the United States. A decade ago England struggled to stay in the top 20, yet there is a paradox. In this same period England have often underpe...
06.06.2015 22:53 Can America Return to Chess Glory?
The United States chess team may embark on a journey reminiscent of the golden past. Three extraordinary chess grandmasters -- Fabiano Caruana, Hikaru Nakamura and Wesley So -- are rated in the World's Top Ten. They are young, hungry and very good. And they will be eligible to play in next year's ch...
02.06.2015 18:04 Fabiano Caruana and Hikaru Nakamura could challenge for world crown
The prospect of the first American since Bobby Fischer challenging for the world chess crown grew closer this week when two United States players qualified for the 2016 Candidates tournament, which will decide Magnus Carlsen’s next title opponent. Fabiano Caruana, the world No2, and Hikaru Nakamur...
29.05.2015 17:22 Watch Chess Champ Magnus Carlsen Win Three Games at Once (While Blindfolded)
Magnus Carlsen is a 24-year-old chess mastermind, who’s currently the top-rated chess player in the world — and the highest-rated player in the history of chess, period. In 2013, TIME named Carlsen one of the 100 most influential people in the world. At the recent Sohn Conference in New York, th...
21.05.2015 16:55 Coming home, Fabiano Caruana adds pop to U.S. chess lineup
It's become a paradox of modern sports: choosing up sides has become as big a draw as the games themselves. The NFL draft, once a relatively low-key affair, now is a three-day televised extravaganza, dissected by an army of analysts. The hot-stove league in baseball — with breathlessly covered fre...
18.05.2015 17:36 Chess Grandmaster Fabiano Caruana Switches Nationality and Will Play for U.S.
Fabiano Caruana, the No. 3 chess player in the world, who has represented Italy for the last 10 years, is switching federations to play for the United States. The United States Chess Federation announced Caruana’s move Tuesday in a statement on its website. Caruana, who was born in the United Stat...
15.05.2015 18:13 Magnus Carlsen quips 'they are indeed buying nerds' as US snaps up Fabiano Caruana
The chess world number three, Fabiano Caruana, announced on Tuesday that he would be seeking to change his country of registration from Italy to the US. Tellingly, the announcement was made from St Louis, Missouri, where Rex Sinquefield has set up a chess club and scholastic centre that has become t...
15.05.2015 18:10 Siberia-Novosibirsk oust traditional favourites in Russia team league
Russia’s team league is by far the strongest in the world, with 2600-rated grandmasters on even the weakest squads. You would expect Moscow and St Petersburg to dominate, but in fact the best teams are often from Siberia. A few years ago the championship favourites often included Tomsk, a city who...
11.05.2015 16:45 Magnus Carlsen claims he could ‘stay at the top for another 20 years’
Magnus Carlsen, fresh from his latest triumph, claimed last week he could “stay at the top for another 20 years”. The world chess champion’s 7/9 against an elite field at Shamkir, Azerbaijan, was the closest yet that the Norwegian has approached to the near-sweeps that Alexander Alekhine in 19...
07.05.2015 17:43 Garry Kasparov shows his class with rapid demolition of Nigel Short
Garry Kasparov has been retired from competitive play for a decade but the former world chess champion and for most people still the all-time No1 stole the show at St Louis last weekend. Kasparov’s 10-game rapid/blitz match with Nigel Short was intended as an extra to the announcement of a new $1m...

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