Viktor Korchnoi dies at the age of 85

Chess.com news:

In a bad year for sports legends, the chess world is not staying behind. Today Viktor Korchnoi died at the age of 85 in a hospital in Wohlen, Switzerland. Korchnoi had been ill for some time and was hospitalized last week after suffering from internal bleeding

Viktor Korchnoi was considered by many as one of the most underrated players in the world of chess. He was mentioned as such by Magnus Carlsen in his interview

Mamedyarov wins Shamkir 2016

Chessbase:

In an astonishing round that had to have Gashimov smiling, the final round saw three of his compatriots winning their final games. However, the biggest result was of course Mamedyarov who defeated Giri in a superb rook endgame he played to perfection, right after beating Caruana in the previous round. In a nail-biting playoff, he defeated Caruana and snatched the title.

Coming in as the 6th seed in this tournament, Mamedyarov made it through the end, beating Fabiano Caruana and Anish Giri in the last two rounds, and beating Caruana further in the tie-break playoff games.

Final standings before the playoff games follow:

shamkir-2016-final

Puzzle Friday 


White to move and mate in two. Can you spot the right response?

Levon Aronian on Chess Training

Levon Aronian:

As a rule, a strong chess player never trains with a strong chess player. You discover new steps and develop new strategies during the game, and it’s not desirable that another strong chess player knows about them. That’s why there are special assistants, who, although being good players, are not the strongest.

A great insight into the work put by a grandmaster into his chess. Read more about how he dealt with his defeat in the recent Candidates’ tournament and other issues in this Aronian interview.

Photo courtesy of Champord.

Sexism in Chess

Robbie Couch on Upworthy:

Ferrera shared a personal story about a young girl whose telling experience is a tough one to forget:

“I was moderating a conversation once among young women, and there was something that a young girl said that has really stayed with me. She stood up and she asked one of our panelists … ‘I was on the chess team. I was really good. But I was the only girl on the chess team, and it felt hard to be there, so I quit.’ And I haven’t been able to shake that. Because if we can’t get our young girls to stay in the room for the chess team, how are we gonna get them to stay in the room to be leaders in business, leaders in politics, leaders in medicine, leaders in science?”

A sad story, indeed. I know we still have to see a lot more women grandmasters competing at chess’ highest levels (Hou Yifan is currently the highest rated woman chess player at 2663 as of April 2016, and she’s only 85th and the only woman among the world’s top 100), but sexism shouldn’t be a reason why more women shouldn’t get to the top of the chess world.