Garry Kasparov as you have never seen him before

1/21/2011 – The idea for a series of commercial spots, produced with the former World Champion Dutch banking giant ING, is unique: Kasparov and a host wear the hats of different countries and speak about openings named after them: the English, Polish, Russian. The video clips, posted on the bank's home page and on YouTube, are multilingual, short and going viral in the chess community. Enjoy.

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Garry Kasparov, as we all know, did humorous commercials for Pepsi and Altavista. Now he has done a series for the Dutch banking giant ING, which features the former World Champion on the front page of the Polish site – and he is the chief recruiter for new accounts.

The campaign makes use of the Polish actor Marek Kondrat and the ads are arranged to reflect, in the language and attire, the countries for which the chess openings are named.

In the introduction host Kondrat speaks Polish while Kasparov responds in Russian. Kasparov is asked what he would charge for chess lessons. His reply: nothing! Message: you can get everything free on the Internet (ING is offering free Internet bank accounts).


This video on the English Opening is shot with bowler hats and, appropriately, in English


This one is on the Polish Defence (1.d4 b5) and the two, wearing national hats, speak Polish


Do we need to tell you what this one is? The segment on the Petroff is conducted in Russian hats. At the end of the segment Kondrat asks Kasparov why is chess so popular in Russia. Garry's answer: "Probably because the pawn can become a significant piece."

In this slightly longer lecture Kasparov speaks (in Russian) about how as children we play all kinds of openings, but not very competently. Later we hone them and find lines that suit our taste. For him it was the Scheveningen System, which he learnt from his first trainer Oleg Privorotsky, back in 1972. It became his trademark opening and served him well during his entire chess career – especially during his 1985 match against Anatoly Karpov which made him the youngest World Champion in chess history.

Translation: Steve Giddins


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