Sunday, February 25, 2018

Chess grandmaster thrills at symposium


‘All about hard work’: Former world chess champion Garry Kasparov challenges Joshua Johnson, left, Trinidad and Tobago under-16 champ, and Christian Ammon, T&T under-18 champion, during yesterday’s symposium hosted by the South Chess Club at Naparima College, San Fernando. —Photo: INNIS FRANCIS

Mark Fraser

Garry Kimovich Kasparov, chess grandmaster and former world chess champion, shared his secret with young fans at a chess symposium at Naparima College, San Fernando, yesterday.

Kasparov, a Russian, said his engine was not the will to win, but his drive to make a difference.

He was addressing players in the third national qualifier hosted by Southern Chess Club.

Kasparov said winning should not be a player’s only motivation.

“To stay almost 20 years at the top, you have to have a desire to make a difference,” he said.

Kasparov said there were endless opportunities in the game, but it was a lot of hard work.

He was asked to share his method of playing the game. But Kasparov responded there was no “magic” or special advice he could share.

He said it was all about hard work and determination.

Kasparov advised parents to get their children excited about the game and to encourage them.

He said nations need to provide more incentives and to establish a proper system of learning from experienced players.

The Trinidad and Tobago Chess Association also extended support to Kasparov in his campaign to become president of the International Chess Federation, known by its French acronym, FIDE.

Kasparov plans to unseat 18-year incumbent Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, also of Russia, in the election that takes place in August.

Kasparov became the youngest world champion in the sport’s history, in 1985, at the age of 22, and went on to hold the number one ranking for 20 years before his retirement from professional chess in 2005.

Kasparov is the current chairman of the New York-based Human Rights Foundation, and his Kasparov Chess Foundation promotes chess in education.