Best of the Web: week 14


Hi everyone!

This week, John came up with something really special: a blog on which translates Soviet-era chess documents into English. It features articles, interviews, some nice annotated games etc. Here is an excerpt I copy-pasted from an interview with Tal (you can find here, it is quite long):

"The game itself was uneventful, and after some 27-28 moves I decided that it was a dead draw and said, mustering as much strength in my voice as I could, “I’m sorry, do you agree to draw?” A sharp “No” was the answer, and then Kholmov started to think. In the first five minutes, I was calm. Then I started to become nervous: I couldn’t see what to think about in that position, and yet Kholmov was thinking, therefore, there was something to think about. Ten minutes later, I was seriously worried. Fifteen minutes later, I looked at that position in utter horror. Twenty minutes later, I’ve made my decision: resign immediately, without waiting for Kholmov’s move. But then Ratmir Dmitrievich [Kholmov] himself interrupted my horrified thoughts: he looked at me and said, “Draw.” I think I answered “Thank you.” We started to analyze the game, reached the final position, and I, apologizing for my immodesty, asked him, “Ratmir Dmitrievich, what were you thinking about for so long?” He answered, “I was thinking how to beat Bronstein with Black pieces tomorrow.”

I thought that was priceless. The blog contains several posts, that you can browse through here!

On another note, Félix would like to draw your attention to the Women's World Chess Championship is currently taking place in Taizhou, China. Hou Yifan is currently 1 point from the title with a commanding 3 point lead over Anna Ushenina (4.5-1.5 after 6 rounds). Find out more on the FIDE's website, or on Chessbase, with detailed commentary by Tatev Abrahamyan, WGM.

On top of the awesome blog which I included above, John was kind enough to provide a second suggestion. Paris is about to host the sixth FIDE Grand Prix of the season, starting September 21st. It features 12 GMs rated above 2700, including Nakamura, Grischuk, Caruana, Ivanchuk, Giri and Gelfand. Should be exciting! You can follow it here.

Finally, my vote this week goes to the game played between Magnus Carlsen and Levon Aronian in the 6th round of the Sinquefield Cup. Carlsen only needed a draw to win the tournament (and 70,000$!). Aronian got a good position out of the opening and Carlsen was forced to defend for most of the game, but when Levon eventually offered him a draw after his attack unwound, Magnus refused and went on to obtain a winning position several moves later! That's called finishing in style. Here is a video commentary of the game by kingscrusher, an English Master with a great Youtube channel I recommended a few weeks ago.

That's all folks, see you next week!