Monday, September 12, 2022

The world of chess has been rocked to its foundations

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Absolute scenes in world chess. First, the Georgian former women's world champion Nona Gaprindashvili has won a settlement in her suit against the producers of the television drama The Queen's Gambit. There she was described, quite wrongly, as "a female world champion, who has never faced men".

Meanwhile in men's chess, the world champion Magnus Carlsen has withdrawn from a top tournament after losing to the young American Hans Niemann, Announcing his move on Twitter, he added a video from Jose Mourinho in which The Special One said "If I speak I am in big trouble," when referring to a referee during a post-match press conference.

This was widely taken to be an accusation of cheating against Niemann, but no evidence for this has come forward. Niemann has admitted to a couple of youthful offences in the Wild West that is online chess, but it's hard to see how anyone could cheat in a major over-the-board tournament, given the precautions that are now taken.

The former world champion Gary Kasparov, sounding magisterial, got it right:

Carlsen has said no more and unless he does this blog will support Hans Niemann.

Magnus Carlsen, incidentally, is not a happy bunny these days. He recently announced that he will not be defending his world title.

Finally, to return to the subject of the day, here is an article on chess and the royal family.

1 comment:

Frank Little said...

Very interesting. Your link led me indirectly to another piece by Winter on chess and Bonar Law. What Winter does not mention is that Law presented the London Public Service Chess League with a trophy, presumably to encourage chess playing in the civil service. The Bonar Law Trophy was still being contested by Civil Service Chess League teams in London in the 1960s when I was there. I gather the competition faded for a time but has now been revived.