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Zukertort Zigzagged

 Zukertort – Potter London, 1876 Black to play   Black has been gradually outplayed and is hanging on by his fingertips. He’s a pawn down, his queen is attacked, and the threat of a4-a5 seems terminal. After 36…Qe4 37 Qxe4 fxe4 38 a4 the pawn will…

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Fiendish Moves #2

 Kupper – Leepin Basel, 1954 White to play   Black has nothing to fear from 27 Qd8+ Kh7 28 Nf8+ Kh6 29 Qd4 Re2 when the position is equal.      27 Nf8! A brilliant move, and the only decisive one.      27…Bh7 27…Qxe5 fails…

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Chess, Murder, Fraud

‘Everything about our situation was a riddle. Why would Karpov and three of his colleagues jump on a plane and fly hundreds of miles to Kalmykia to open a criminal case against me just for revenge?’ Bill Browder, Red Notice: How I Became Putin’s No….

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Has Karpov Lost His Marbles?

Tony Miles As it happens I am in a position to reveal exclusively to Kingpin readers (unless, of course, someone else actually offers to pay me) the true and tragic story of why the invincible Anatoly failed to dispose of that young upstart Kasparov. I…

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Fiendish Moves #1

 Eliskases – Henneberger Bad Liebwerda, 1934 Black to play   Walter Henneberger (1883–1969) was a Swiss master whose career as a school teacher afforded him few opportunities to compete in  international tournaments. In the early 1900s he won the Swiss Championship four times but was…

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#crapchessbooks

Inspired by Tony Miles’ famous two-word book review, several readers have offered suggestions for chess books that should never be written. There are more on Kingpin’s Facebook page.   They say that everyone has a crap book in them, so please send us your ideas!  (Mig…

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That’s the Spirit!

Jonathan Rowson A polished pine bedroom in a convent school, Tallinn, Estonia, September 1997. A bottle of whisky, unpacked suitcases, and three drunken chess players playing blitz. Andrew Martin, Simon Williams, Jonathan Rowson. And, our invisible friend, ‘The Spirit’. It is intriguing. It is intriguing…

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Chess Annotation as a Fine Art

 ‘A raking pin by the proud prelate. White threatens to thrust the flagship of his armada forward with the galloping move e5, leaving his discomforted steed on f6 feeling like Yasser Arafat at a barmitzvah.’   A great spoof by Colin Crouch from Kingpin 20 (Spring 1993).

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Walking the Walk

It’s a measure of how drab the World Championship has been that Magnus Carlsen allegedly falling asleep at the board and the double blunder in Game 6 have provided its most dramatic moments. The blunder is beautifully captured in this short clip featuring IM Lawrence…

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