Independent Pursuits; Chess
Wednesday 10 June 1998
Well, if Kasparov beats Shirov, then it leaves it exactly where we found it: with Kasparov, the world number one, as champion of his own organisation, with no formal rules to determine his challengers, and the International Chess Federation, Fide, running a lame "official" championship for the title currently held by Anatoly Karpov.
In the less likely event of Shirov beating Kasparov, however, it is doubtful that he would generally be accepted as world champion. He would still be rated behind Viswanathan Anand, and, having failed to win the Fide world championship in January, would also need to establish his supremacy over Anatoly Karpov.
The mess that was created in 1993 when Short and Kasparov left Fide to run their own match is still a long way from being sorted out. The status of world champion can only be restored in a unifying match, and the sooner the better.
Here's a composition by a true world champion: White to play and draw by Vassily Smyslov. With Black threatening gxf3, and 1.fxg4 losing quickly to 1...Kxg4 followed by f4 and f3, White's task looks hopeless. Even 1.f4, hoping to get at the black king along the black diagonal, offers no chance after 1...Ra6+.
The solution is extraordinary: 1.Bf6+!! exf6 2.f4! Rh8+ (2...Rg8 3.Kh7 is no better) 3.Kg7 Rxh5 4.a4! Rg5+ 5.Kh8! (5.Kh7? loses after 5...Kh5) 5...Rg6 6.Kh7 Kh5 7.Kh8 Rh6+ 8.Kg7 Rg6+ 9.Kh8 and Black can make no progress since 9...Kh6 is stalemate.
Listen to his collaboration with Naughty Boymusic
Film review Michael Glatze biopic isn't about a self-hating gay man gone straight
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Rape threats, death threats and a police investigation after video poking fun at an Islamic Party in Malaysia goes viral
- 2 Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
- 3 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
- 4 6-year-old writes ice cold Valentine's card to his stepmother
- 5 Syrian child photographed 'surrendering to camera because she thought it was a gun'
Tidal launch: The most pretentious lines from Alicia Keys' valedictory speech
Tidal: Jay Z's Spotify rival criticised for making wealthy artists even richer
Tidal launch: Madonna insists Jay Z's new streaming service is 'not about consumption and greed'
Top Gear live to go ahead: Jeremy Clarkson to join Richard Hammond and James May... just don't call it Top Gear
Ryan Reynolds interview: The actor is branching out with Nazi art-theft drama Woman in Gold
Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans
Revealed: Putin's army of pro-Kremlin bloggers
Katie Hopkins reported to the police for race hatred by Labour MP Simon Danczuk after tweet about Pakistani men