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     Volume 4 Issue 38 | March 18, 2005 |

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Time Out

Kasparov quits Chess

Garry Kasparov, the best player in the world for nearly 20 years, has quit the game at the premature age of 41. That is shocking news. The grandmaster from Baku, who wrested the world title from Anatoly Karpov in 1986, made the announcement after winning the Linares GM tournament. The chess world will certainly miss the player who is a genuine contender for the "Greatest Ever" along with Bobby Fischer.

Kasparov's exit comes at a time when chess is passing through a crisis, with the FIDE not in total control of the situation. The point will be made clear by the fact that there is no universally accepted world champion today. Ever since the Association of Chess Professionals(ACP) was formed by Kasparov himself, the organisational structure of FIDE has been weakened due to the presence of an almost parallel body.

Most people blame Kasparov for what has happened over the last one decade or so. However, the world champion was never happy with the role of the FIDE, particularly after FIDE President Florencio Campomannes intervened to stop his first match with Karpov, when Kasparov had staged a great comeback and looked like knocking his rival out. The match was stopped suddenly and Kasparov could never take it easy. He did become world champion, but could not trust the FIDE any longer.

That said, the dejected world champion made the mistake of organising chess himself -- a task top players are not expected to perform. He arranged a match with Nigel short with very good prize money. Some grandmasters were really tempted by the seemingly good prospects of ACP, but they overlooked the fact that a badly weakened FIDE was not a good thing for the game. The players are now feeling the pinch as sponsors for top level matches are hard to find.

Kasparov failed to reorganise chess because it was not his business. He may have realised the truth a bit late, and decided to punish himself by retiring from the game. But this self-inflicted penalty is a big loss to chess.

Here is a typical Kasparov game.

White-Garry Kasparov
Black-Nigel Short [D55]
Brussels 1986

1.d4 e6 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 d5 4.Nc3 Be7 5.Bg5 h6 6.Bxf6 Bxf6 7.e3 00 8.Rc1 c6 9.Bd3 Nd7 10.00 dxc4 11.Bxc4 e5 12.h3! exd4 13.exd4 Nb6 14.Bb3 Bf5 15.Re1 Bg5!? N 16.Ra1! Nd7 17.d5! Rc8? 18.Nd4 Bg619.Ne6!! fxe6 20.dxe6 Kh7 21.Qxd7! Qb6! 22.e7 Rfe8 23.Qg4! Qc5 24.Ne4! Qxe7 25.Bc2!! Rf8 26.g3! Qd8 27.Rad1 Qa5 28.h4 Be7 29.Nc3! Bxc2 30.Rxe7 Rg8 31.Rdd7 Bf5 32.Rxg7+ Kh8 33.Qd4 1-0


Position after 19.Ne6!!


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