Saturday, 16 June 2007
Chess in the attic: February 1989
On my latest trip to the attic, I "discovered" a collection of German chess magazines from a great year I spent in Bavaria after graduating. Bavaria is beautiful, crazy, fantastic and a whole collection of paradoxs, but that's a heap of other stories.
The magazine, Schach Report, is the German equivalent of the British Chess Magazine. It combined two publications, Deutsche Schachblatter and Deutsche Schachzietung. The February 1989 edition contains a host of interesting snippets.
It was Candidates quarter final time, and surprise names had made it into the last 8: Canadian Kevin Spragget who was playing Artur Yusupov in Quebec, Icelander Johan Hjartarson up against Anatoly Karpov in Seattle, and Jonathan Speelman who had already defeated Nigel Short. The final match featured two 'expected names' Lajos Portisch up against Jan Timman in Antwerp.
Actually, Speelman's name shouldn't be too much of a surprise. He was ranked number 4 in the World at the time, and was to qualify for the next Candidate's cycle as well, allowing Nigel Short to extract revenge for this defeat. It was a peak time for English chess, the magazine shows 3 Englishmen in the top 10 in the FIDE list:
1 Garry Kasparov 2775
2 Anatoly Karpov 2750
3 Nigel Short 2650
4 Jonathan Speelman 2640
5 Alexander Beliavsky 2640
6 Vassily Ivanchuk 2635
7 Valery Salov 2630
8 Zoltan Ribli 2625
9 Ulf Andersson 2620
10 John Nunn 2620
In the Bundesliga, defending champions Porz, strengthened by the arrival of two American GM's Larry Christiansen and John Federowicz, were putting some pressure on Bayern Munchen (top boards Wolfgang Hubner and Zoltan Ribli) the league leaders. Amazingly Wuppertal, a team that included Grandmasters William Watson and Daniel King languished at the bottom of the second division with no wins.
The strong Groningen tournament had been won by Ian Rogers ahead of favourite John Nunn. The field included two up and coming young players: future FIDE 'World Champion' Alexander Khalifman and French superstar Joel Lautier. Meanwhile in the accompanying open tournament, Tony Miles was making 15 moves out of 38 with his king in this crazy loss to Hergott:
Hergott - Tony Miles, Groningen Open 1988
1. Nf3 d6 2. g3 e5 3. c4 f5 4. Nc3 Nf6 5. d4 e4 6. Nh4 c6 7. f3 exf3 8. exf3 g6 9. Bg5 Bg7 10. Qd2 Kf7 11. O-O-O Re8 12. Bd3 Qb6 13. g4 fxg4 14. fxg4 Bxg4 15. Bxf6 Bxd1 16. Bxg7 Kxg7 17. Nf5+ Kg8 18. Rxd1 Qc7 19. Ne4 Re6 20. Nh6+ Kh8 21. Rf1 Na6 22. Nf7+ Kg8 23. Nf6+ Rxf6 24. Rxf6 Rf8 25. Nh6+ Kg7 26. Rxf8 Kxf8 27. c5 dxc5 28. Bxa6 bxa6 29. dxc5 Ke8 30. Qd6 Qxd6 31. cxd6 Kd7 32. Nf7 h5 33. Ne5+ Kxd6 34. Nxg6 Kc5 35. h4 Kd4 36. Nf4 Ke3 37. Nxh5 Kf2 38. Nf6 Kg1 0-1
Do any of you know Hergott's first name?
And finally, a dispute was brewing up between FIDE and the Grandmasters' Association (GMA) in battle for power at the top of world chess, with Garry Kasparov refusing to play in anymore FIDE tournaments whilst Campomanes remained president. It wouldn't be chess without a FIDE dispute.
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Chess Tales by Roger Coathup: A collection of online articles about chess and chess players.