Latest in Mikhail Botvinnik

Michael Basman’s Questionnaire

  What is your earliest memory of playing chess? I went up to Selfridges with my dad and we bought a wooden set for 10s. 6d. He taught us to play chess that evening. I remember him showing us the knight move.   What is…

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Tiger v Anaconda

‘But Kasparov is not a man to limit his goals or his spheres of action. Stocky and strong, with black hair already streaked with grey by the pressure of his life-style, Kasparov lives in perpetual whirlwind of activity. Naturally this is reflected in his speech,…

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Botvinnik’s Life and Games

  Mikhail Botvinnik: The Life and Games of a World Chess Champion by Andy Soltis 284 pages | hardback | 12 photos | S49.95 Jefferson: McFarland, 2014         Nagesh Havanur The Patriarch never had an official biographer. He didn’t want one. His autobiography…

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White Snow of Russia

A Soviet film about Alexander Alekhine Sarah Hurst Talking about Alekhine with chess friends recently, someone mentioned White Snow of Russia (1980), and it occurred to me that the film might be available on YouTube, like so many Soviet films – and it is. The…

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Chess and Politics

John L. Watson [This withering indictment of the stupidity and arrogance of chess players was written over 16 years ago. It is still relevant today and lends weight to Sarah Hurst’s recent observation that ‘chess brilliance has nothing to do with high intelligence in other areas,…

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Confessions of a Crooked Chess Master – Part 1

Michael Basman   The Slippery Slope My first step along the road to perdition came in the London Under-14 Boys Championship in 1959 (in those days girls didn’t or couldn’t play chess). It was round 5 and I was playing J.N. Eyres of Colfe’s School…

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Sarah Hurst: 20 Questions

Sarah Hurst was a regular contributor to CHESS magazine in the 1990s and also edited the British Chess Federation’s newsletter, ChessMoves. Her fine book Curse of Kirsan: Adventures in the Chess Underworld is now available on Kindle at a bargain price. Since 2002 she has been translating…

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No Regrets: Boris Spassky at 60

  Lev Khariton The attractive countryside of Meudon is a 15-minute train ride from Paris. Here I came to interview Boris Spassky just three days before his 60th birthday. He reminiscences about his life, his chess career, his rivals and friends. Dear Grandmaster, I should…

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