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The Scotsman

Chess News June 2002

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28th June, 2002

AS the World Cup prepares to wind down with the Brazil-Germany final at the weekend, it seems that chess was never far away from all the action as the Beautiful Game became intrinsically linked with the Royal Game.

Rather than the gambling-fuelled notorious card schools and horse racing nights of the past, under the calming – and somewhat cultural - influence of Sven-Goran Eriksson, the England camp put their renewed team-spirit down to playing chess. According to centre-back Sol Campbell, who introduced chess to the players and set up a mini-league amongst them, the game proved a big hit in the England camp in Japan.

Not to be outdone, football fan Garry Kasparov turned into a media pundit for the World Cup with a headline story on the sports pages of the top Spanish newspaper “El Pais” on Wednesday. Outspoken as ever, Kasparov severely criticised the handling of the South Korea-Spain quarterfinal match, claiming that the game was “the most witnessed fraud ever perpetrated” as Sepp Blatter and FIFA pandered to the opening up of soccer to the huge Asian market.

On the chess-playing front during the World Cup, a first-time experiment in England of the football scoring system – 3 points for a win, 1 point for a draw - was introduced by chess maverick Michael Basman to the Surrey Classic Open that at last gave Scotland something to cheer about during the football frenzy as Edinburgh's Paul Roberts won the tournament.

The system removes the incentive to agree draws early, or to arrange them before play starts, and was first pioneered in Scotland at the 1996 Glenrothes Congress after its organiser, Walter Pearson, became incensed after top players Paul Motwani and Steve Mannion agreed a six-move draw in the third round of the tournament the year previous. Likewise for Basman, he was an outspoken critic over a pre-arranged England package deal of four quick draws against Russia during the Istanbul Olympiad and the now infamous final round of last year's British Championship when the winner, Joe Gallagher, agreed a draw with Keith Arkell in just five moves.

In the last round of the Open, Paul Roberts was leading with 8 points (+2=2), but just behind on 7 points were top seeds IM Graeme Buckley and Paul Georghiou. Ironically, with Buckley losing his final round game, Roberts therefore only needed to draw with Georghiou to win. 



1st Paul Roberts (Edinburgh) 11/15 (+3=2) £200 2-3rd IM Graeme Buckley and Paul Georghiou 10/15 (+3=1-1) £75 each



1-2nd John Lewin (Orpington, Kent) & Tim Seymour (Sunbury, Mx) 12/15 (+4-1) £75 each



1-2nd Harvey Murray-Smith (Hinchley Wood, Sy) and Daniel Eichner (East Grinstead, Sx) 13/15 (+4=1) £70 each 3-5th Jemima McGraw (Godstone, Sy), William Philpott (East Dulwich, London) and Robert Moore, (Addlestone, Sy) 12/15 (+4-1)


P Georghiou – P Roberts
Surrey Classic Open (5), Pirc Defence

1 d4 d6 2 e4 Nf6 3 Nc3 e5 4 Nge2 Nbd7 5 g3 g6 6 Bg2 Bg7 7 h3 exd4 8 Nxd4 0–0 9 0–0 Nc5 10 Re1 Re8 11 Nb3 Nxb3 12 axb3 Bd7 13 Be3 Bc6 14 Bd4 a6 15 Qd2 Nd7 16 Bxg7 Kxg7 17 f4 Nb6 18 g4 h6 19 Ne2 Qf6 20 Nd4 a5 21 Nxc6 bxc6 22 c3 a4 23 bxa4 Rxa4 24 Rxa4 Nxa4 25 Qc2 Nb6 26 Rf1 g5 27 fxg5 Qxg5 28 Qf2 Re7 29 e5 Qxe5 30 Bxc6 Qe3 31 Kg2 Qxf2+ 32 Rxf2 Nc4 33 b3 Ne5 34 Bb5 Ng6 35 Bc4 draw

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27th June, 2002

CHESS in the U.S. is starting to benefit in a big way by a large investment from Seattle's technology-rich businessmen who set-up the Seattle Chess Foundation, which has now expanded to become America's Foundation For Chess.

An eleventh-hour intervention by the forward-thinking group saved the future of the U.S. Championships. Not only that, the same group are also behind an annual summit match between the U.S.A. and China, the second leg starting early next month in Shanghai; the U.S. attempting to wrest back the trophy won by China (21-19) in the first chess summit match held last year in Seattle.

The group revamped the image of the traditional championships with a new-styled format allowing it to be opened up for the first time through a series of national qualifying events, the latest being the Chicago Open, 24-27 May, a seven-round tournament held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Illinois.

With a prize fund of $100,000 on offer, the event attracted more than 800 players in different sections. The top-rated Open section, with 117 players, included 19 GMs and 13 IMs and ended in a seven-way tie for first place between grandmasters Gregory Kaidanov, Alexander Shabalov, Leonid Yudasin, Ildar Ibragimov, Giorgi Kacheishvili, Alex Yermolinsky and Jaan Ehlvest, each scoring 5.5/7.

Although the money was split in the seven-way grandmaster tie for first, Kaidanov, from Kentucky, took the top-spot on tie-break after a dramatic last-round victory over Alexander Onischuk, the top-rated U.S. grandmaster, after an imaginative exchange sacrifice in the Saemisch variation of the Nimzo-Indian to bludgeon his way through the black defences.

The six qualifying places on offer from the event for the next U.S. championship  are going to grandmasters Alex Fishbein and Anatoly Lein, International Master Jesse Kraai and masters Stephen Muhammad, Marc Esserman and Elina Groberman.


G Kaidanov - A Onischuk
11th Chicago Open (7), Nimzo-Indian Defence

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nc3 Bb4 4 e3 0-0 5 a3 Bxc3+ 6 bxc3 d6 7 Ne2 e5 8 Ng3 Re8 9 Bd3 e4 10 Bb1 b6 11 f3 Ba6 12 fxe4 Bxc4 13 Qf3 Nbd7 14 Ra2 Bxa2 15 Bxa2 Nf8 16 0-0 Ng6 17 Bd2 Qd7 18 Nf5 Qd8 19 e5 dxe5 20 e4 exd4 21 Nxg7 Ne5 22 Qh3 dxc3 23 Bxc3 Kxg7 24 Qg3+ Ng6 25 Bxf6+ Qxf6 26 Rxf6 Kxf6 27 h4 Re5 28 Qf3+ Kg7 29 h5 f6 30 hxg6 hxg6 31 Qd3 Rae8 32 Qc4 R5e7 33 Qc6 Rxe4 34 Qxc7+ R8e7 35 Qb8 Kh6 36 Qf8+ Kg5 37 Bf7 Rc7 38 Qg7 Rc1+ 39 Kf2 Rc2+ 40 Kf3 Rf4+ 41 Ke3 1-0

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26th June, 2002

WHEN Garry Kasparov controversially lost his 1997 match to IBM's Deep Blue, he said there had to be some sort of "ghost in the machine", inferring human interference as some of the moves made by the computer were breaching the boundaries of a major breakthrough in artificial intelligence.

Nearly two centuries earlier some of the brightest men and women of 18th-century Europe were similarly shocked when a chess-playing machine - an automaton atop a clockwork-stuffed cabinet, dressed in Near Eastern costume - began touring the Continent's courts and exhibition halls, beating almost all challengers.

The chess-playing machine known as the Turk was actually a fraud, with a concealed human operator - but from this clever illusion there can be found a direct correlation between using chess as means of testing for artificial intelligence in machines. Built by Hungarian-born nobleman Wolfgang von Kempelen in 1769, the hoax was so cleverly perpetrated that its impact was felt across Europe's upper strata of thinkers and rulers, who engaged in a heated debate about the implications of what we now call "artificial intelligence", long before Kasparov was humbled by Deep Blue.

And as an icon of the potential of technology, the machine inspired none other than Charles Babbage - intellectual grandfather of the modern computer, who challenged the machine to a game in 1820. "Automaton won in about an hour," he reported. Though he immediately suspected it was somehow under human control, after the encounter, "he started to wonder whether a genuine chess-playing machine could, in fact, be built."

In 1804, Baron Wolfgang von Kempelen died. In his lifetime he contributed much in the fields of mechanics, hydraulics, architecture, engineering, and natural history. He perfected the method of embossed printing for the blind and his work on mechanical production of speech later helped in the development of the telephone. He designed the hydraulic system that operated the fountains at Schonbrunn, and a canal system to link Budapest with the Adriatic Sea. Despite all this, he's best remembered for the hoax he perpetrated with his invention of the Turk.

A recently released Penguin book, "The Mechanical Turk," written by Tom Standage, the Economist's technology correspondent, is an absorbing historical yarn set against the backdrop of the Industrial Revolution. The book follows the fraudulent automaton's 85-year career and numerous trips from owner to owner, crossing paths with a wide field of luminaries including Napoleon Bonaparte, Catherine the Great, Ben Franklin, and Edgar Allan Poe.


V Kramnik - V Anand
Advanced Chess (5), Queen's Gambit Accepted

1 d4 d5 2 c4 dxc4 3 Nf3 e6 4 e3 Nf6 5 Bxc4 c5 6 0-0 a6 7 dxc5 Qxd1 8 Rxd1 Bxc5 9 Nbd2 0-0 10 Be2 Rd8 11 b3 b6 12 Bb2 Bb7 13 Rac1 Nbd7 14 Nc4 Rac8 15 Kf1 Bd5 16 Nce5 Nxe5 17 Nxe5 a5 18 Ba6 Ra8 19 Bb5 Rac8 20 h3 Be4 21 Rxd8+ Rxd8 22 f3 Bg6 23 e4 Rd2 24 Nd3 h6 25 Bxf6 gxf6 26 Nxc5 bxc5 27 a4 Rb2 28 Rxc5 Rxb3 29 Bc6 f5 30 Rxa5 fxe4 31 fxe4 Rb4 32 e5 Be4 33 Bxe4 Rxe4 34 Kf2 Kg7 35 Kf3 Rb4 36 Ra7 Rb3+ 37 Kf4 Rb2 38 Kf3 draw

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25th June, 2002

IT looks as if it's going to be third time lucky for the Man v Machine challenge between world champion Vladimir Kramnik and Deep Fritz, the top computer program from the multi-award winning German ChessBase stable.

Following two postponements in the aftermath of the 9-11 tragedy, Einstein Group plc, which now owns the rights to the first high-profile Man v Machine encounter since Garry Kasparov lost to IBM's Deep Blue in 1997, has reached an agreement with the match sponsors in Bahrain for the new dates.

Billed as "Brains in Bahrain", the eight-game $900,000 showdown will be played 4-19 October at the Bahrain Mindsports Centre. Although Kasparov's nemesis in Deep Blue had a much more powerful platform than the multi processor PC being used in Bahrain, the software advances incorporated since within Deep Fritz should compensate for the lack of power in the hardware.

In Spain at the weekend, Kramnik was demonstrating his prowess with computers at the fifth annual Advanced Chess Match, held in Leon, as he easily defeated the challenge of world number three and Advance Chess veteran Vishy Anand. Playing in the novel event for the first time, Kramnik won the match by a margin of 3.5-2.5 after winning game three; the other five games being drawn.

Advanced Chess is the brainchild of Kasparov, who played in the original 1998 tournament against Veselin Topalov that ended in a 3-3 tie. However, after a major disagreement with the Spanish organisers, Kasparov now declines to endorse the event. The idea behind the new concept is to officially allow a player to consult computer databases containing millions of games during play. Not only that, but players can also consult a state of the art chess engine during the game to double-check their calculations at the board.

However, with both players only having 25 minutes each for the game, the players have to finely judge just how much silicon aide they can receive during play as consulting a computer can be costly on the clock as apposed to human instinct.


V Kramnik - V Anand
Advanced Chess (3), Queen's Gambit Accepted

1 Nf3 d5 2 d4 e6 3 c4 dxc4 4 e3 c5 5 Bxc4 Nf6 6 0-0 a6 7 Bb3 cxd4 8 exd4 Nc6 9 Nc3 Be7 10 Bg5 0-0 11 Qd2 Na5 12 Bc2 b5 13 Rad1 Nc4 14 Qf4 Ra7 15 Ne5 Rc7 16 Nxc4 bxc4 17 Bxf6 Bxf6 18 d5 e5 19 Qf3 Rb7 20 Qe4 g6 21 Qxc4 Rxb2 22 Bb3 Bg5 23 d6 Be6 24 Qa4 Bxb3 25 axb3 Qb6 26 Qg4 Bf4 27 Nd5 Qd8 28 Nxf4 exf4 29 d7 Rxb3 30 Qxf4 Rb8 31 Rfe1 Qb6 32 h4 h5 33 Rd6 Qc5 34 Qf6 Qf5 35 Qxf5 gxf5 36 Rxa6 Rfd8 37 Rd6 1-0

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24th June, 2002

IN 1927, when Britain's Vera Menchik won the newly-formed Women's World Championship crown, she was regarded as a phenomenon in the women's game, and in the process had established for herself a unique and uncompromising place in the evolution of women's chess.

Menchik, born in 1906 in Moscow to a Czechoslovakian father and English mother (settling in England with her family in 1921), was so strong a player she had amassed seven Woman's World Championship titles (incredibly losing just one game out of 83) before her untimely death in 1944 when a German V-1 rocket hit her Kent house; also killing in the process her sister, Olga, who unsuccessfully challenged her elder sister for the title in 1935 and 1937, and their mother.

She became, under the skilful tutelage of the famous Hungarian master Geza Mroczy, the first female player to regularly compete against the top male players of the day - even finishing second equal at Ramsgate with Akiba Rubinstein, behind the great Jose Raul Capablanca and ahead of her mentor, Maroczy. In the 1930s an unusual club was formed that members feared joining: "the Menchik Club", consisting only of defeated male players, the membership roster being quite impressive, the victims including a world champion and many known masters: Max Euwe (twice), Sammy Reshevsky, Mir Sultan Khan, Sir George Thomas, C.H.O'D Alexander, Edgar Colle, Frederick Yates, William Winter, Lajos Steiner, Frederich Saemisch, Stuart Milner-Barry, Harry Golombek, and Jacues Mieses (who lost to her four times in a match).

After Menchik, there followed Georgia's Nona Gaprindashvili and Maya Chiburdanidze, both of whom achieving full GM titles, though very limited success against the opposite sex in the international arena. The real breakthrough for women's chess came with the rise of Hungary's Judit Polgar, who in 1981 caused a major sensation when she became a grandmaster at men's level at 15 years three months, eclipsing by two months Bobby Fischer's historic age record set in at the 1958 Interzonal. By avoiding female-only tournaments, Judit became so strong that she was able to consistently compete on equal terms with the world's male elite players.

Such was Polgar's success with this radical toughening-up policy, she was once thought of as a potential heir(ess) to Kasparov's world crown. In becoming the world's strongest female player ever, she has inspired female players worldwide to do likewise - many realising that to strengthen their game, they have to take the men on at their own game.

Though not in same league as la Polgar, the latest female sensation is Russia's Alexander Kosteniuk, dubbed the Anna Kournikova of chess - a pretty face with a nice line in PR that's done wonders for the game, but unfortunately like the tennis pro she has no major wins to accompany the looks. Last week in Spain at the 4th Manise International Chess Festival (a 10 minute quickplay tournament), she beat Spanish GM Alfonso Romero 2.5-1.5 to set herself up with a head to head clash with former world champion Anatoly Karpov in a best of four-game final. Although Kosteniuk successful managed to win game two against the former champ, she was outplayed as Karpov easily won the final 3-1.


A Karpov - A Kosteniuk
Manises (1), Semi-Slav Defence

1 d4 d5 2 c4 e6 3 Nc3 Nf6 4 Nf3 c6 5 e3 Nbd7 6 Qc2 Bd6 7 Bd3 0-0 8 0-0 Qe7 9 c5 Bc7 10 e4 e5 11 exd5 cxd5 12 Bg5 Qe6 13 Nb5 Bb8 14 Bxf6 e4 15 Bh4 exf3 16 Bxh7+ Kh8 17 Bf5 Qc6 18 Nc3 fxg2 19 Kxg2 Nxc5 20 dxc5 d4+ 21 Be4 Qh6 22 Bg3 Bh3+ 23 Kg1 Bxf1 24 Rxf1 dxc3 25 Qxc3 Bf4 26 Bxb7 Rae8 27 c6 Bd2 28 Qc5 f5 29 c7 f4 30 c8Q Rxc8 31 Bxc8 fxg3 32 Qxf8+ 1-0

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21st June, 2002

MANY argue that the advent of online chess has been harmful to the prestige of the Royal Game, due to the quick time controls and the lack of physical face to face meetings where the full psychological struggle of chess comes to the fore.

However, one very active internet playing site, The World Chess Network, came up with a unique match that combined the best of both worlds by organising a six-game North American Championship challenge, featuring the reigning U.S. champion GM Larry Christiansen and his youthful Canadian counterpart, IM Pascal Charbonneau.

The intriguing challenge pitted the wits of Christiansen, a seasoned veteran of the international arena and three-time U.S. title holder, against the relatively inexperienced 18-year-old Charbonneau, who only recently lifted the Canadian title after surprisingly beating former world championship candidate Kevin Spraggett 1.5-0.5 in a play-off match for the crown.

Billed as "The Battle of the 49th Parallel", the match was staged 10-16 June in Richmond at the Vancouver Airport Conference Resort in British Columbia, and played at regular time controls of 40 moves in two hours, plus 1 hour sudden death, for each player. Each day the games were transmitted live at www.worldchessnetwork.com with accompanying commentary; and the following week, the two contestants, who are both site pros at WCN, held lectures on the site reviewing critical moments from their games.

After winning the opening game in convincing style, Christiansen lost the second game to Charbonneau to tie the match at 1-1. However, Christiansen's greater matchplay experience soon came to the fore with three successive wins as he claimed victory for the U.S. in the match with a final 4-1 scoreline.

The World Chess Network, which caters for all levels of play from beginners to experts, is owned and operated by Master Games International Inc., a corporation founded in 1997 by chess organizers, International Grandmasters and patrons of the game. The Company's Chairman is legendary chess impresario Dato' Tan Chin Nam, who has served as Deputy President of FIDE and has sponsored many chess-related events throughout the World.


P Charbonneau - L Christiansen
WCN North America Ch. (1), Caro-Kann Defence

1 e4 c6 2 d4 d5 3 e5 Bf5 4 Nf3 e6 5 a3 Nd7 6 Nbd2 Bg6 7 b3 Nh6 8 c4 Be7 9 Be2 f6 10 0-0 0-0 11 Bb2 fxe5 12 dxe5 Nc5 13 Nd4 Qb6 14 b4 Nd3 15 Bxd3 Bxd3 16 c5 Bxc5 17 N2b3 Bxd4 18 Bxd4 Qb5 19 Re1 Bf5 20 Re3 b6 21 Rc3 Qa4 22 Qc1 Bg6 23 f3 Nf5 24 Bf2 Rad8 25 Nd2 Rc8 26 g4 d4 27 Rb3 Ne7 28 Qc4 Nd5 29 Qxd4 Nf4 30 Qc4 b5 31 Qf1 Rcd8 32 Rb2 Nd3 33 Rba2 Nxe5 34 Bc5 Rf7 35 Re1 Nd3 36 Rxe6 Nxc5 37 bxc5 Rfd7 38 Rd6 Rxd6 39 cxd6 Bf7 0-1

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20th June, 2002

IT could be said that Paul Keres was truly the crown prince of chess because he was in the top three or four from 1937 to 1963, and yet mystery and intrigue continually surrounds the reasons why he never got as far as challenging for the world crown.

He was seen as the natural heir to Alekhine in 1937, but due to a mixture of World War II and Soviet politics after the war that saw Estonia annexed by the USSR, he never managed to earn a match for the title; despite playing seven times in the Candidates and finishing second on four occasions. Yet, this great player played against ten of the twelve holders of the world crown and (in most cases on more than one occasion) beat nine of them - only Karpov, with two draws, escaping his wrath.

Over the years, the conspiracy theorists pointed to the KGB, who they alleged "influenced" Keres to under perform against the ranks of the great post-war Soviet grandmasters - especially Stalin's anointed favourite Mikhail Botvinnik, who won the crown in 1948 following the death of Alekhine after winning a special five-way tournament organised by FIDE that also included Keres, Smyslov, Reshevsky and Euwe. Whether due to political pressures Keres did a deal in order to save his career (and perhaps his life) is still open to question to this day. When asked once, while visiting Estonia, why Keres had never won the world championship, his friend, Boris Spassky replied cryptically: "He was unlucky - like his country."

As indicated in yesterday's column, Keres has the unique distinction in the chess world of being the only player to be honoured by having two annual memorial events, held in different countries: Estonia, in early January to coincide with his birthday on the 7th of the month; and also Canada, held in late May to coincide with his last tournament victory there in 1975, before tragically dieing of a heart-attack on June 5th in Helsinki, en route home to Estonia from Canada.

Recently the 27th Keres Memorial took place at the Plaza 500 Hotel in Vancouver, running from 17-20 May. Last year's winner Georgi Orlov, the Seattle-based Russian master didn't have it all his own way this year, and had to be content in sharing the title with Jack Yoos, Nick Bequo and Fanhao "Bobby" Meng after the 48-player top-rated Open section ended in a four-way tie for first on 5.5/7.


F Meng - G Orlov
Keres Memorial (4), Modern Defence

1 e4 g6 2 d4 Bg7 3 Nc3 d6 4 Be3 c6 5 Qd2 b5 6 0-0-0 Qa5 7 a3 Nd7 8 Bd3 Ngf6 9 h3 0-0 10 f4 b4 11 Nb1 c5 12 dxc5 dxc5 13 Nf3 Bb7 14 e5 Nd5 15 c4 Nxe3 16 Qxe3 Bxf3 17 gxf3 Rab8 18 Bxg6 fxg6 19 Rxd7 Bh6 20 Qd3 bxa3 21 Nxa3 Qb4 22 Nb5 a6 23 Qd5+ Kh8 24 Qe6 axb5 25 Qxe7 Qxc4+ 26 Kb1 Qg8 27 Rhd1 Bxf4 28 Ra7 Rbe8 29 Qb7 Rxe5 30 Qxb5 g5 31 Rdd7 Re1+ 32 Kc2 Rc1+ 33 Kd3 0-1

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19th June, 2002

IN 1969, the great Paul Keres, arguably the strongest player never to have won the world championship let alone play in one, inaugurated a series of international tournaments to be held in his home town, the Estonian capital city, Tallinn.

Every two years a tournament was held, each stronger and more interesting than the previous one. In 1971 Keres himself shared first place with Mikhail Tal, and in 1975 everyone was delighted to see the great Estonian grandmaster alone in first place, one point ahead of Spassky and Olafsson. Tragically, on the road home from winning the Vancouver International in Canada that same year on the 5th of June, Keres died suddenly from a heart attack in Finland at the age of 59.

Keres was hailed as a hero in his homeland, and after his death he received a state funeral in Tallinn. He also became the first (and only) chessplayer to appear on a bank note when Estonia immortalised their fallen hero on the back of the 5 Krooni note. After his death, the tournament he started became a memorial - the first, in 1977, won by Tal. Such was Keres' worldwide standing, the Canadians also decided to hold an annual memorial (more of which in tomorrow's column) in his honour - thus making Keres the only player to have annual memorials in different countries.

Earlier in the year in Tallinn, the Keres Memorial, an eight-player rapidplay (average rating 2595) was organised by Keres' old chess club Kalev. Viktor Gavrikov took first after a tied blitz match with Evgeny Sveshnikov by the drawing of lots; both scored 5/7 in the rapidplay.


Final scores: 1-2 GM V Gavrikov (Lithuania), GM E Sveshnikov (Russia) 5/7; 3 GM J Lautier (France) 4.5; 4-5 GM A Khalifman (Russia), GM M Rytshagov (Estonia) 4; 6 GM J Ehlvest (Estonia) 3; 7 IM T Seeman (Estonia) 1.5; 8 GM L Van Wely (Netherlands) 1.


L Van Wely - V Gavrikov
Keres Memorial (2), English Opening

1 Nf3 e6 2 c4 Nf6 3 Nc3 b6 4 e4 Bb7 5 e5 Ne4 6 Bd3 Nxc3 7 dxc3 Be7 8 Bf4 d6 9 Qe2 Nd7 10 0-0-0 dxe5 11 Nxe5 Bg5 12 Qe3 Bxf4 13 Qxf4 Qf6 14 Qxf6 Nxf6 15 f3 Ke7 16 c5 bxc5 17 Bb5 Rad8 18 Bc6 Ba6 19 f4 Rd6 20 Bf3 Nd5 21 g3 Rhd8 22 Rhe1 Kf8 23 a3 f6 24 Ng4 Kf7 25 Nf2 Nb6 26 Ne4 Rxd1+ 27 Bxd1 c4 28 Nc5 Bc8 29 Bf3 Rd6 30 h4 f5 31 Re5 Ke7 32 Kc2 g6 33 a4 Nd7 34 Nxd7 Bxd7 35 Ra5 Rd3 36 Be2 Rxg3 37 Bxc4 Rg4 38 Rxa7 Rxf4 39 Kb3 Kd6 40 a5 e5 41 a6 Bc6 42 Rb7 e4 43 Rb8 e3 44 a7 Rxc4 45 Kxc4 e2 46 Rd8+ Ke7 47 Rc8 Kd7 0-1

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18th June, 2002

AFTER a 13-year interlude from Sweden, when he took third equal behind joint-winners Kasparov and Karpov at the super-strong Skelleftea World Cup in 1989, Nigel Short was back to winning ways at the Sigeman & Co tournament in Malmo with an all too rare first place for the former world championship challenger.

Sharing the joint-lead with Jonny Hector going into the home straight, the tournament dramatically turned Short's way during the penultimate eighth round. As Hector was outplayed by Jan Timman in a tough ending, Short seized his chance to take the outright lead at the decisive moment of the tournament after a crushing victory with Black against Russia's Vladimir Epishin.

Totally flummoxed by a surprise knight sacrifice in the opening, the Russian GM was dispatched in just 28 moves as he forced the White monarch into a mating net in the middle of the board. The win gave Short the outright lead going into the final round, and a quick last round draw gave Short first place on 6/9 a half-point ahead of Denmark's Peter Heine Nielsen.

The main idea behind the format of the tournament is to pit the wits of talented young players from the Nordic countries against world-class opposition - all the better to help them to develop and improve their game. Although there was no Nordic winner of the tournament, the final score posted by IM Leif Erlend Johannessen secured the young Norwegian his third and final Grandmaster norm, thus becoming his country's fifth grandmaster.


Final scores: 1 GM N Short (England) 6/9; 2 GM P Heine Nielsen (Denmark) 5.5; 3-4 GM J Hector (Sweden), IM L Erlend Johannessen (Norway) 5; 5-6 GM V Epishin (Russia), GM J Timman (Netherlands) 4.5; 7-8 IM E Berg (Sweden), GM T Luther (Germany) 4; 9 GM H Stefansson (Iceland) 3.5; 10 GM T Wedberg (Sweden) 3


V Epishin - N Short
Sigeman & Co. (8), Queen's Gambit Declined

1 d4 e6 2 c4 Nf6 3 Nf3 d5 4 Nc3 Be7 5 Bf4 0-0 6 e3 c5 7 dxc5 Bxc5 8 a3 Nc6 9 b4 Nxb4 10 axb4 Bxb4 11 Qb3 a5 12 0-0-0 Bd7 13 Rd4 Qe7 14 Be5 Rfc8 15 Kb1 b5 16 Nxb5 a4 17 Qa2 Bxb5 18 Bxf6 gxf6 19 cxb5 Rc3 20 Rd3 Rac8 21 Be2 Ba3 22 Qd2 Qb4+ 23 Ka1 Rc1+ 24 Rxc1 Rxc1+ 25 Ka2 Qc4+ 26 Kxa3 Ra1+ 27 Kb2 Qa2+ 28 Kc3 Qb3+ 0-1

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17th June, 2002

SINCE 1993, Sweden's Limhamn Chess Club have been organising an annual tournament in central Malmo, which is sponsored by a consortium led by the top legal firm of Sigeman & Co.

The rather funky sounding Hipps party floor was the venue for this year's tenth edition of the tournament, a category 13 (average rating 2571) ten-player all-play-all, making it the second strongest Sigeman event ever, bettered only by the 1999 category 14 tournament won by Boris Gelfand.

And, after three years of various tinkering with the format of the tournament, this year's event returned to the original idea of organizing a tournament where Scandinavian players would face world class opposition, with six players from the Nordic countries up against two former world championship contenders, a Russian and a German.

The line for the ten-day event was headed by Nigel Short (England), and featured, in rating order, Peter Heine Nielsen (Denmark), Jan Timman (Netherlands), Vladimir Epishin (Russia), Hannes Stefansson (Iceland), Thomas Luther (Germany), Tom Wedberg (Sweden), Emanuel Berg (Sweden), Jonny Hector (Sweden) and Leif Erlend Johannssen (Norway).

The exciting Swede Jonny Hector made the early running in the tournament, with a bright start of two wins and a draw with Black against top-seed Nigel Short. However, a shock fifth round defeat at the hands of Germany's Thomas Luther proved a costly setback for the Swede - especially as the result allowed Short to pounce into the joint lead with successive wins against Wedberg and Berg respectively in rounds five and six.


N Short - T Wedberg
Sigeman & Co (5), Two Knight's Defence

1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bc4 Nf6 4 Ng5 d5 5 exd5 Na5 6 Bb5+ c6 7 dxc6 bxc6 8 Be2 h6 9 Nh3 Bd6 10 d3 0-0 11 Nc3 Nd5 12 0-0 Rb8 13 Kh1 Nxc3 14 bxc3 Be6 15 f4 Bxh3 16 gxh3 exf4 17 Bxf4 c5 18 Qd2 Rb6 19 Be3 Qh4 20 Bg4 Kh7 21 Rf5 Qe7 22 Rg1 Re8 23 Bxh6 g6 (23 ..gxh6 24 Bh5!) 24 Bg5 Qb7+ 25 Bf3 Qd7 26 Rd5 Qe6 27 h4 Reb8 28 h5 Rb1 29 hxg6+ fxg6 30 Be3 Nc6 31 Rdg5 Rxg1+ 32 Rxg1 Ne5 33 Be4 Qh3 34 Qe2 Rf8 35 d4 Qh4 36 Bg5 Rf2 37 Bxh4 Rxe2 38 dxe5 Bxe5 39 Bxg6+ Kh6 40 Bg3 Bxg3 41 Rxg3 1-0

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14th June, 2002

THE third European Women's Individual Championship has just ended in Varna on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast with a triumph for the host nation, as their top female player, Antoaneta Stefanova, lifted the title after leading the 114-player tournament from start to finish.

Stefanova, 23, who was seeded fourth in the tournament, romped home in style in the 11-round Swiss event after a superb start of seven wins and a draw in her first eight games - from there going on to take the gold with an undefeated score of 9/11 and a tournament performance (TPR) of 2671, one of the highest TPR's for a female player in the last eighteen months. Second place and silver went to Armenia's Lilit Mkrtchian half a point behind on 8.5, and Alicia Gallimova of Russia taking bronze with 8 after beating Peng Zhaoquin of The Netherlands 2-0 in a medal play-off.

The tournament was also a qualifier for the Women's World Championship, with the top 12 players going through. Although there was no Scots playing in Varna, Edinburgh-based Keti Arakhamia-Grant, last year's bronze medallist, came close again to picking up a medal and a qualifying place with a final score of 7/11. In the final round she lost out on third equal after losing to Peng; then going on to lose 2-0 to Natasa Bojkovic in a play-off match for a qualifying place. Sadly none of the English trio of Harriet Hunt (6.5), Heather Richards (5.5) or Ingrid Lauterbach (5.5) finished high enough to be in contention for one of the qualifying places.


Final Placings & Qualifiers for the world championship: 1 Antoaneta Stefanova (BUL), 2 Lilit Mkrtchian (ARM), 3 Alisa Galliamova (RUS), 4 Peng Zhaoqin (NED), 5-9 Corina Peptan (ROM), Ekaterina Kovalevskaya (RUS), Natalia Zhukova (UKR), Svetlana Matveeva (RUS), Elena Sedina (ITA), 10-12 Nino Khurtsidze (GEO), Natasa Bojkovic (YUG), Jana Jackova (CZE).


A Stefanova - L Mkrtchian
3rd European Women's Ch. (6), Reti Opening

1 Nf3 d5 2 g3 e6 3 Bg2 c5 4 d4 cxd4 5 0-0 Nc6 6 Nxd4 Bc5 7 Nxc6 bxc6 8 c4 Ne7 9 Qc2 Bd6 10 Rd1 0-0 11 e4 Bb7 12 Nc3 Qc7 13 Be3 f5 14 exd5 f4 15 c5 fxe3 16 cxd6 exf2+ 17 Qxf2 Qc8 18 Qe2 Nxd5 19 Ne4 Ba6 20 Qe1 Rd8 21 Bh3 Rb8 22 Nc5 Rxd6 23 Qe5 Qd8 24 Nxa6 Qb6+ 25 Kh1 Rbd8 26 Bf1 1-0

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13th June, 2002

MUCH has been said and written about the Fischer-Spassky World Championship match in Reykjavik that so captivated the world in 1972. However, due to the worldwide appeal of this historic match, much of it was inaccessible as it appeared in foreign language.

Now 30 years on, New In Chess allow us to relive this seminal moment in chess history by dusting down an old Dutch master with the first English translation of an acclaimed classic: Fischer World Champion! written by Dr. Max Euwe and Jan Timman, two of the greatest names in Dutch chess.

What makes the book all the more interesting is that Euwe, a former world champion himself, was the President of FIDE during this period and he therefore played a central role in what he describes as the "wretched business" going on behind the scenes; after Henry Kissinger finally persuaded Fischer through the White House that he had to do his "patriotic duty" by flying to Iceland to defeat the Russians at the height of the Cold War.

From Euwe' vantage point as president, he had a unique insight to all the in-fighting and petty squabbles as Fischer found fault with everything in sight - venue, the number of games, the prize-fund, the television rights, the cameras, the lighting, the chairs etc. And, not to be outdone on the analytical front, 20-year-old Timman (along with the assistance of Ulf Andersson and Jan Hein Donner), one of the world's finest analysts, gives a typically deep, and very accurate insight - and in the days without the aid of computers - to what was happening over the board during the match.

All in all, a timely walk down memory lane for the reader to that late summer of 1972 that thrust chess into the limelight. An enthralling read - even 30 years on.


R Fischer - B Spassky
World Championship 1972 (6), QGD Tartakower

1 c4 e6 2 Nf3 d5 3 d4 Nf6 4 Nc3 Be7 5 Bg5 0-0 6 e3 h6 7 Bh4 b6 8 cxd5 Nxd5 9 Bxe7 Qxe7 10 Nxd5 exd5 11 Rc1 Be6 12 Qa4 c5 13 Qa3 Rc8 14 Bb5 a6 15 dxc5 bxc5 16 0-0 Ra7 17 Be2 Nd7 18 Nd4 Qf8 19 Nxe6 fxe6 20 e4 d4 21 f4 Qe7 22 e5 Rb8 23 Bc4 Kh8 24 Qh3 Nf8 25 b3 a5 26 f5 exf5 27 Rxf5 Nh7 28 Rcf1 Qd8 29 Qg3 Re7 30 h4 Rbb7 31 e6 Rbc7 32 Qe5 Qe8 33 a4 Qd8 34 R1f2 Qe8 35 R2f3 Qd8 36 Bd3 Qe8 37 Qe4 Nf6 38 Rxf6 gxf6 39 Rxf6 Kg8 40 Bc4 Kh8 41 Qf4 1-0

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12 June, 2002

BORIS SPASSKY will always be remembered as the man who had the misfortune to be champion when Bobby Fischer decided to go on the rampage as for the stylish attacking play that propelled him to the world crown in 1969.

Recognised as one of the greatest natural talents of all-time, Spassky displayed early promise in winning the 1955 World Junior title, came third in the Candidates tournament in Amsterdam the following year at 19, and then narrowly lost a World Championship match in 1966 to Petrosian.

Three years later, he qualified for another crack at Petrosian - this time fulfilling that early promise by winning the crown. However, his traumatic loss to Fischer in 1972 came as a heavy psychological blow - from that moment he never again seemed to play with the same zest or commitment, though his huge talent still emerged in the occasional brilliant game.

After the infamous 1972 match, he delicately negotiated permission to leave the Soviet Union to take up residence with his new French wife in France, where he embraced the good life as only an emigre Russian can. There, his influence and advice proved invaluable in improving the quality of French chess during the 1980s and 1990s.

These days Spassky is seldom seen at the board, but just a couple of weeks ago he proved to be the hero of the hour during the French Club Cup final between NAO and Montpellier played in Paris at the NAO Chess Club. With the top three boards being drawn, Spassky's dramatic, final move won a piece - and with it the match for NAO 2.5-1.5.


NAO 2.5-1.5 Montpellier (NAO had White on odds)

1 V Kramnik draw F Valajo Pons; 2 E Bacrot draw H Hamdouchi; 3 S Maze draw E Prie; 4 B Spassky 1-0 M Santo Roman


M Santo Roman - B Spassky
Coupe de France 2002, Scotch Game

1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 d4 exd4 4 Nxd4 Bc5 5 Nxc6 Qf6 6 Qd2 dxc6 7 Nc3 Qe7 8 Bd3 Nf6 9 0-0 Ng4 10 Na4 Qe5 11 Qf4 Bd6 12 Qxe5+ Nxe5 13 Be2 f6 14 f4 Ng6 15 Be3 b6 16 Rae1 0-0 17 Nc3 Bd7 18 Bd3 Rfe8 19 Nd1 Re7 20 g3 Bh3 21 Rf2 Nf8 22 Rd2 Nd7 23 Bc4+ Be6 24 Bxe6+ Rxe6 25 Nf2 Re7 26 Rde2 b5 27 Kg2 c5 28 b3 a5 29 Bd2 a4 30 Bc3 Ree8 31 Nd3 axb3 32 axb3 Nb6 33 e5 fxe5 34 Nxe5 Ra2 35 Ra1 Nd5 0-1

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11 June, 2002

THE Chess Oscar for 2001 has been awarded for the eleventh time to Garry Kasparov, who despite losing his world crown almost two years ago, continues to dominate the tournament scene with his record of 10 successive elite tournament victories, stretching from Wijk aan Zee 1999 through to Linares 2002.

Organised by "64-Chess Review" in Moscow, the annual "Beauty Contest" of the Oscar invites chess journalists, Grandmasters, and officials to submit their personal top 10 choices for player of the year in order of preference, the first on the list receiving 10-points - your correspondent's choice being: 1 Kasparov, 2 Ponomariov, 3 Kramnik, 4 Adams, 5 Anand, 6 Grischuk, 7 Polgar, 8 Topalov, 9 Korchnoi, 10 Kosteniuk.

Over 300 lists from over 60 countries were contributed; and when the scores were weighted and added up, Kasparov was the easy winner with a tally of 3,943 (including 260 1st places) votes. However, there was a very close race for second between last year's winner Vladimir Kramnik and the new teenage FIDE world champion Ruslan Ponomariov. In the end Kramnik, with a tally of 2,970, just edging out by 11-points Ponomariov, who was third with 2,959 - over 1,100 votes ahead of fourth place Vassily Ivanchuk.

2001 Chess Oscar: 1 G Kasparov (Russia) 3,943; 2 V Kramnik (Russia) 2,970; 3 R Ponomariov (Ukraine) 2,959; 4 V Ivanchuk (Ukraine) 1,820; 5 V Anand (India) 1,720; 6 V Topalov (Bulgaria) 1,106; 7 M Adams (England) 781; 8 A Shirov (Spain) 631; 9 A Morozevich (Russia) 480; 10 E Bareev (Russia) 401.

The award was the brainchild of Spanish journalist Jorge Puig - with the cooperation of the International Association of Chess Press (the AIPE abbreviation is derived from the French name of the organisation - Association Internationale de la press echiqueene) - who initiated the annual award in 1967. In 1989, following the demise of the AIPE, the Oscar became defunct. However, following a seven-year hiatus, Alexander Roshal, the influential editor of the top Russian magazine "64-Chess Review", revived the annual award.

Roll of Honour: Bent Larsen 1967; Boris Spassky 1968-69; Bobby Fischer 1970-72; Anatoly Karpov 1973-1977 and 1979-1981; Viktor Korchnoi 1978; Garry Kasparov 1982-1988, 1995-1996, 1999 and 2001; Vishy Anand 1997-1998; Vladimir Kramnik 2000.


G Kasparov - J Lautier
FIDE Grand Prix (2.2), Sicilian Kalashnikov

1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Nxd4 e5 5 Nb5 d6 6 N1c3 a6 7 Na3 b5 8 Nd5 Nge7 9 c4 Nxd5 10 cxd5 Ne7 11 Nc2 Bd7 12 Bd3 g6 13 0-0 Bg7 14 Be3 0-0 15 Rc1 f5 16 f3 f4 17 Bf2 g5 18 Nb4 Ng6 19 Be2 h5 20 Kh1 Rf7 21 a4 bxa4 22 Nxa6 Nf8 23 Rc6 Rf6 24 Qxa4 Rg6 25 Qb4 Qf6 26 Nb8 Rxb8 27 Qxb8 g4 28 Rc7 gxf3 29 Bxf3 Bg4 30 Qe8 Qg5 31 Rg1 h4 32 h3 Bh5 33 Qf7+ Kh8 34 Rc8 1-0

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10th June, 2002


Chess Problem

WHITE: Kf4, Qf8, Ra5, Rc8, Bf7, Nd8, Pc6, e7, g7, BLACK: Kd6, Qe8, Bc7, Nb6, Pf6
White to play and mate in two moves


IT'S often said that if the hurly-burly of tournament play emphasises the sporting aspect of chess, and the cool calculation of postal play the scientific, then the artistic element of the Royal Game can be found in the world of chess composition and the art of problem solving.

Today's diagram position could be your first path on the road to becoming crowned the 2002-2003 British Chess Solving Champion, this being the starter problem for the annual competition organised by the British Chess Problem Society. The problem is White to play and mate in two moves against any Black defence.

If you wish to enter, send your solution (which should consist of White's first move only, called the "key move") along with a cheque or postal order for (UK)3.00 (made payable to the British Chess Problem Society). Applicants should send their solution to: British Chess Problem Society, 9 Roydfield Drive, Waterthorpe, Sheffield S20 6ND. Entries will be accepted by email at bstephen@freeuk.com, but will only be accepted into the competition if followed by payment as above.

Those entering must enclose a SAE with their solution so that they can be notified if they have been successful in reaching the second, postal stage of this year's championship, which will contain 8 progressively more difficult and varied problems, culminate with the finals being held at Oakham School in Rutland next February. It is important to mention that you are entering via "The Scotsman" when you send in your solution. Please also note that the championship is only open to UK residents. The closing date is 31 July 2002. Good luck!


A Khalifman - A Beliavsky
FIDE Grand Prix (5.1), QGD Tartakower

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nf3 d5 4 Nc3 Be7 5 Bg5 h6 6 Bh4 0-0 7 e3 b6 8 Be2 Bb7 9 Bxf6 Bxf6 10 cxd5 exd5 11 b4 c6 12 0-0 a5 13 b5 c5 14 Ne5 Bxe5 15 dxe5 d4 16 exd4 cxd4 17 Na4 Ra7 18 f4 Qd5 19 Rf2 Nd7 20 Rc1 Rc8 21 Rxc8+ Bxc8 22 Qc2 Bb7 23 Bc4 Qe4 24 Qxe4 Bxe4 25 Rd2 Nc5 26 Nxb6 d3 27 Nc8 Rc7 28 Nd6 Ba8 29 b6 Rc6 30 Bd5 Rxd6 31 exd6 Bxd5 32 Rxd3 Be6 33 d7 1-0

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7th June, 2002

YOUTH and innocence proved no match for age and guile in the final of the FIDE Moscow Grand Prix at the Hotel Mezhdunarodnaya, as top seed Garry Kasparov comprehensively defeated 15-year-old Teimour Radjabov 1.5-0.5 to take the title and first prize of $21,600.

Perhaps overawed by his appearance in a big-time final against his all-time hero Kasparov, Radjabov, who like Kasparov also comes from Baku in Azerbaijan, got off to the worst possible start to the best-of- two game final, as he was crushed in just 25 moves in game one. However, the teenager made a more determined effort in the second game as he pressed Kasparov all the way; though had to settle for a draw by a threefold repetition in a blocked position.

The win marked Kasparov's return to the FIDE fold for the first time in nearly a decade, and after the match the winner commented, that "FIDE is changing now. I've waited a long time for this." Kasparov, 39, also wryly noted that this was his first game against an opponent who was born after he became world champion in 1985.

Out of the original starting line-up of 32 in Moscow, half of the field were eliminated in the first round. Losers in subsequent rounds continue to play a series of matches to determine places 2-16. Therefore, the final standings and Grand Prix Points accrued, were: 1 G Kasparov (998); 2 T Radjabov (713); 3 A Khalifman (546); 4 A Beliavsky (451); 5 A Grischuk (333); 6 V Ivanchuk (309); 7 I Smirin (285); 8 E Bareev (261); 9 R Khazimdzhanov (190); 10 V Akopian (166); 11 R Ponomariov (143); 12 J Polgar (119); 13 A Onischuk (95); 14 A Dreev (71); 15 J Lautier (48); 16 E Sutovsky (24).

The latest top-ten placings in the FIDE Grand Prix after the second leg in Moscow, is: 1 P Leko (1176); 2 A Grischuk (1173); 3 G Kasparov (998); 4 T Radjabov (853); 5 A Khalifman (742); 6 K Georgiev (532); 7 A Beliavsky (451); 8 V Ivanchuk (393); 9 A Karpov (392); 10 Z Azmaiparashvilli (364). The FIDE Grand Prix series consists of five events with the overall winner receiving the top prize of $100,000. The Croatian Grand Prix is the next event on the calendar, and it's scheduled to be held in early August in Dubrovnik.


G Kasparov - T Radjabov
FIDE Grand Prix Final (1), Pirc Defence

1 e4 g6 2 d4 Bg7 3 Nc3 c6 4 Nf3 d6 5 Be3 Nd7 6 Qd2 Ngf6 7 Bh6 Bxh6 8 Qxh6 e5 9 0-0-0 Qe7 10 h3 a6 11 dxe5 dxe5 12 Bc4 b5 13 Bb3 a5 14 a4 b4 15 Nb1 Ba6 16 Nbd2 0-0-0 17 Qe3 Kb7 18 Bc4 Nc5 19 Bxa6+ Kxa6 20 Nc4 Nfxe4 21 Nfxe5 Rd5 22 Nxc6 Qg5 23 Rxd5 Qxd5 24 N4xa5 Kb6 25 Nxb4 1-0

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6th June, 2002

THE $120,000 FIDE Grand Prix in Moscow has set up an intriguing final with the first-ever meeting across the board for the boys from Baku - Garry Kasparov and the 15-year-old wunderkind from the same home town in Azerbaijan, Teimour Radjabov.

Playing with a maturity and confidence beyond his age, this tournament has marked another watershed in Radjabov's career. Despite being the third-lowest rated player among the field of 32 in Moscow, determined play has seen the youngster eliminate some very tough customers indeed: former three-time Russian Champion Peter Svidler; two defeated FIDE world championship finalists in Vladimir Akopian and Vassily Ivanchuk; and now former world candidate Alexander Beliavsky, after an epic semi-final which he won 3-2.

However, while he may be pleased just to get to a glamour final at such a young age, he now faces the daunting task of playing the toughest customer of them all - Garry Kasparov. The dream final was complete after Kasparov - who beat Alexander Grischuk 1.5-0.5 in the quarter-finals - defeated former FIDE world champion Alexander Khalifman 2.5-1.5 in the semi-finals.

Funnily enough, the generation gap between the two finalists can be best highlighted when Radjabov played at Wijk aan Zee a couple of years ago. There he was accompanied by his father, Boris Sheinen, who from time to time would give Kasparov a telling nod. It suddenly dawned on the world number one that this was the same man who used to accompany him to Oleg Privorodsky's chess school in Baku when he was seven or eight! And, just like Kasparov, Radjabov's first chess coach was Privorodsky.


T Radjabov - V Akopian
FIDE Grand Prix (2.3), Queen's Indian Defence

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nf3 b6 4 Nc3 Bb7 5 a3 d5 6 cxd5 Nxd5 7 Qa4+ Bc6 8 Qc2 Nxc3 9 Qxc3 Bd6 10 d5 Bxd5 11 Qxg7 Rf8 12 Bg5 f6 13 Bh6 Rf7 14 Qg8+ Ke7 15 Qg4 e5 16 Ng5 Qg8 17 Rd1 Ba2 18 h3 fxg5 19 Bxg5+ Rf6 20 Bxf6+ Kxf6 21 Qf3+ Ke7 22 Qxa8 Qb3 23 Rxd6 Qxb2 24 f3 cxd6 25 Qxb8 Qxa3 26 Qc7+ Ke6 27 Kf2 Qc5+ 28 Qxc5 dxc5 29 e4 c4 30 Be2 Bb3 31 Rc1 b5 32 Ra1 Kd6 33 Rxa7 b4 34 Ke3 h5 35 h4 c3 36 Rb7 1-0

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5th June, 2002

FOLLOWING the Prague peace deal a major overhaul now looks on the cards for the FIDE Grand Prix, the latest of which is taking place at the Hotel Mezhdunarodnaya in Moscow.

Initially FIDE had agreed on five venues - Dubai, Moscow, Dubrovnik, Bangalore and Rio de Janeiro - to stage the Grand Prix. However, after the Dubai fiasco when the inaugural event was marred by a threatened players' strike after the prize fund was "suddenly" reduced, FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov took immediate action and told Artiom Tarasov, of FIDE Commerce, and Octagon Marketing, both of whom were responsible for the promotion and marketing of the Grand Prix series, that their services were "no longer required".

Alexey Orlov, President of the World Chess Foundation, and a signatory to the Prague peace deal, is now in charge of the Grand Prix and I understand he has initiated a whole raft of new changes, most notably with regard to the venues. While Dubrovnik is likely to go ahead as planned, Bangalore and Rio looks set to be replaced by two back to back Grand Prix's this November in Canada and America with the support of world number one Garry Kasparov - Montreal, organised by Serge Grimaux who so superbly orchestrated the Eurotel World Trophy last month in Prague; and Seattle, organised by the American Foundation For Chess - formerly known as the Seattle Chess Foundation - who's expertise has revamped the US Championships and organised last year's US v China Summit Match in Seattle.

Meanwhile, in Moscow, Kasparov's FIDE comeback continues in fine style with his second successive 2-0 win, this time over French star Joel Lautier. However, the second round wasn't so good for the young FIDE world champion and second seed Ruslan Ponomariov, who will play Kasparov en route to the new reunified world title match late next year. Yet again the Ukrainian teenager bombed at the Grand Prix, this time instead of losing in to the only female competitor as he did in the opening round at Dubai, he was comprehensively beaten 2-0 in the second round by tournament veteran Alexander Beliavsky of Slovenia.


Round 2: R Ponomariov (Ukraine) 0-2 A BELIAVSKY (Slovenia); A Dreev (Russia) 0-2 I SMIRIN (Israel); T RADJABOV (Azerbaijan) 2.5-1.5 V Akopian (Armenia); E Sutovsky (Israel) 0.5-1.5 V IVANCHUK (Ukraine); E BAREEV (Russia) 2-0 A Onischuk (USA); R Kasimdzhanov (Uzbekistan) 0.5-1.5 A KHALIFMAN (Russia); A GRISCHUK (Russia) 3-2 J Polgar (Hungary); J Lautier (France) 0-2 G KASPAROV (Russia)


A Beliavsky - R Ponomariov
FIDE GP (2.2), King's Indian Defence

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 Nf3 Bg7 4 g3 0-0 5 Bg2 d6 6 0-0 Nc6 7 Nc3 Rb8 8 d5 Na5 9 Nd2 c5 10 Qc2 e6 11 Rb1 exd5 12 Nxd5 Bf5 13 e4 Be6 14 Nb3 Nxb3 15 axb3 Nxd5 16 cxd5 Bd7 17 Bd2 f5 18 Rfe1 fxe4 19 Bxe4 Bd4 20 Be3 Qf6 21 Bxd4 Qxd4 22 Rbd1 Qf6 23 Re3 Rbe8 24 Rde1 Qd4 25 h4 Kg7 26 h5 Rf6 27 Bxg6 Rxe3 28 Rxe3 hxg6 29 Re7+ Kh6 30 Rxd7 Qxd5 31 hxg6 Rxg6 32 Qc1+ Rg5 33 Qf4 Qd1+ 34 Kh2 1-0

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3rd June, 2002

SERGEY Movsesian - the Tbilisi-born Czech GM who once complained that players such as himself were as good as the top 10, but never got a chance to play in elite tournaments - scored a famous victory in the 32nd Bosna International in Sarajevo, after beating top-seed Alexei Shirov in a dramatic, final round showdown to take the title with a winning score of 6/9.

Shirov, who was denied the Bosna 2000 title after losing to Movsesian in the penultimate round, threw caution to the wind in an attempt to finally wrest first prize in the tournament, but again his aggression only succeeded in handing the title to Movsesian after a speculative sacrifice in the opening backfired.

For the likable - and very able - Movsesian, who was once famously described as "a tourist" by Garry Kasparov after finding himself in the quarterfinals of the 1999 FIDE World Championships in Las Vegas, the high-profile win - coupled with his quarterfinal appearance in both the FIDE world championship of 1999 and World Cup of 2000 - could mean more invitations to some of those elite events he would like to test his abilities in.


Final standings: 1 S Movsesian (Czech Rep) 6/9; 2 I Sokolov (BIH) 5.5; 3-6 A Shirov (Spain), A Dreev (Russia), I Smirin (Israel), T Radjabov (Azerbaijan) 5; 7 K Georgiev (Bulgaria) 4.5; 8-9 E Dizdarevic, B Kurajica (both BIH) 3.5; 10 Z Kozul (Croatia) 2.


A Shirov - S Movsesian
Bosna 2002 (9), Slav Defence

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 c6 3 Nc3 d5 4 Nf3 a6 5 Bg5 Ne4 6 Bf4 Nxc3 7 bxc3 dxc4 8 g3 b5 9 Bg2 Bb7 10 Ne5 Qc8 11 Rb1 Nd7 12 Nxc4 bxc4 13 0-0 e6 14 Qa4 Ra7 15 Be3 c5 16 Bf4 Be7 17 dxc5 Bxc5 18 Rfd1 Ke7 19 Rxd7+ Qxd7 20 Qxd7+ Kxd7 21 Bxb7 f6 22 Bf3 e5 23 Be3 Bxe3 24 fxe3 Kc7 25 Rb4 Rc8 26 Bg4 Rb8 27 Rxc4+ Kd6 28 Bf3 Rb6 29 Ra4 a5 30 Kf2 Rb2 31 g4 Rc2 32 c4 Kc5 33 Bd5 Rb2 34 a3 Rc2 35 Kf3 g6 36 h3 Rc3 37 h4 f5 38 gxf5 gxf5 39 Kf2 h6 40 h5 Kb6 41 Be6 Rc7 42 Ke1 f4 43 exf4 exf4 44 Bd5 Rc5 45 Kd2 Re3 46 Bf3 Kc7 47 Bd5 Kd6 48 Bb7 Rxh5 49 Ba6 Rb3 50 c5+ Rxc5 51 Rxf4 h5 52 Ra4 Rg3 53 Rh4 Rxa3 54 Bb7 Rb3 55 Bf3 Rb4 0-1

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