Kavalek in HuffPo: Chess King's Mad Scramble

6/14/2010 – In this week's Huffington Post column GM Lubomir Kavalek discusses – in great depth – a spectacular game played between Alexander Riazantsev and Sergey Karjakin at the recent Poikovsky tournament. It was so complicated even the chess computers sometimes hesitated to suggest the best way. But the humans navigated their way through the mess brilliantly and with vigor.

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Chess King's Mad Scramble

By GM Lubomir Kavalek

The chess game had all the elements of football. But instead of a helmet, the quarterback had a crown on his head and was not guarded by 300-pound massive NFL linemen, but by tiny pawns. The pass-rushers were fast and heavy: the queen and two rooks flushed the quarterback out of the pocket and the scramble began. He could have been knocked down early, but escaped, running beautifully between and around the opponent's men deep into their territory. It was a mad rush, leading to a winning touchdown. When chess imitates life, it may even resemble American football.

The spectacular game was played between the Russian GM Alexander Riazantsev, who coached the former world champion Anatoly Karpov, and GM Sergey Karjakin, a former Ukrainian prodigy who settled in Moscow and now plays for Russia. It was so complicated even the chess computers sometimes hesitated to suggest the best way. How could have two human beings navigate their way through this mess? But they did brilliantly and with vigor.

It was the most dramatic clash at the tournament honoring Karpov in the Russian town of Poikovsky. It finished Sunday and the victory in this game helped Karjakin to share first place with Victor Bologan of Moldova. Both grandmasters scored 7-4, but Karjakin won the trophy on a better tiebreak.

Note that in the replay windows below you can click on the notation to
follow the game. You can also replay it on a full page here.

Original column hereCopyright Huffington Post


The Huffington Post is an American news website and aggregated blog founded by Arianna Huffington and others, featuring various news sources and columnists. The site was launched on May 9, 2005, as a commentary outlet and liberal/progressive alternative to conservative news websites. It offers coverage of politics, media, business, entertainment, living, style, the green movement, world news, and comedy. It is a top destination for news, blogs, and original content. The Huffington Post has an active community, with over one million comments made on the site each month. According to Nielsen NetRatings, the site has around 13 million unique visitors per month (number for March 2010); according to Google Analytics the number is 22 million uniques per month.


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