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Basman at the British

Michael Basman Editor’s note: What is striking about these games is how each highlights different aspects of Mike’s playing style. As you might expect, there is his calling card – the outlandish opening 1 e4 g5 (‘totally bonkers’ –Nigel Short), but next is an epic…

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B is for Basman

In 1968, the American magazine Chess Review introduced Michael Basman as ‘another bright B’ in the tradition of famous British chess players represented by Bird, Blackburne and Burn. That’s some billing for a 21-year-old. Basman would never be the brightest chess star in this firmament…

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Poetry Corner

In Memoriam Brian Eley (1946–2022) British Chess Champion, Suspected paedophile So. Farewell Then, Brian Eley, Fugitive chess master, Touch and move suspect, Reported to the BCF for alleged misconduct in 1979.   Fifty years ago You were the British Chess Champion In Brighton.   Thirty years…

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Self-help

Chess Improvement It’s all in the mindset  Barry Hymer and Peter Wells 334 pages | Softback | Bibliography | Index | £15.99 Crown House Publishing, 2020 Carl Portman   This is not so much a review as a summary of my thoughts as a passionate…

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Chess is Never Square in The Queen’s Gambit

Sarah Hurst The Queen’s Gambit is an entertaining Netflix drama based on a novel that presents chess in a positive light and makes all the right points about women’s struggles on and off the board. It’s hard these days not to see all period drama…

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Horsing Around

Writer Patrick Leigh Fermor and wife Joan social distancing with friends on the Greek island of Hydra in 1954 (Clockwise from top left: Patrick Leigh Fermor, Cyril Connolly, Maurice Bowra, unknown, Joan Leigh Fermor) Joan Leigh Fermor (née Rayner) was ‘addicted to chess’ (obituary, Daily…

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Chess and Recession

“There is a new era in chess. For the past three years new clubs have been springing up in mushroom growths, chess books of all sorts are avidly bought, library shelves are depleted of these volumes. Newspapers are giving more space to the game, recognizing…

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Deep Bloke, Shallow Book

Fred Reinfeld The Man Who Taught America Chess, with 282 Games Alex Dunne 194 pages | Softback | Bibliography, Indexes | $45.00 Jefferson: McFarland, 2018 Tim-Jake Gluckman This biography of Fred Reinfeld (1910-1964) covers the chess life of an outstanding producer (writing, editing, ghosting and…

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