Live from Curaçao – Timman vs Bruzon

6/9/2005 – In 1962 a great Candidates tournament was held on the Caribbean island of Curaçao. It was won by Petrosian, ahead of Geller, Keres, Fischer and Korchnoi. Now, 43 years later, Dutch GM Jan Timman has written a book about it. As part of a promotional he will play a match against Cuban champion Lazaro Bruzon from June 11-17. You can watch it on Playchess.com.

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Live from Curaçao, it's... Jan Timman vs Lazaro Bruzon

By Ger Jan Meijer

Jan Timman and Lazaro Bruzon will play a match on the Caribbean Island of Curaçao. The match will consist of four Rapid and four Classic games and will be played in the Van der Valk Plaza Hotel. The first two Rapid games are scheduled for Saturday June 11 at 16:30h EST and 18:00h EST. The games will be broadcasted live on Playchess.

The match has been organized to promote Timman’s newest book “Curaçao 1962, the Battle of Minds that shook the International Chess World”. The Governor of the Netherlands Antilles will receive the first copy of that book.

Curaçao is the largest island of the Netherlands Antilles. The other Caribbean islands of the Netherlands Antilles are Bonaire, Sint Maarten, Sint Eustatius and Saba. Aruba was also part of these Antilles, but in 1986 they stepped out to obtain a special status within the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Jan Timman is a frequent visitor of Curaçao. In the past he spent several vacations on the tropical island. In 2001, 2002 and 2003 he played in the International Tournaments that were held in the Penthouse of the Van der Valk Plaza Hotel.

The 2002 edition was dedicated to the Curaçao 1962 Candidates Tournament. In 1962 Curaçao hosted the event, which would find an opponent for World Champion Mikhail Botvinnik. From May 2nd until June 28th of that year, the quadruple round robin pitted eight of the world's best players against each other. When the dust settled, Tigran Petrosian stood a half point clear of the field with a score of 17.5/27. Petrosian was the only player who did not lose a single game, and his momentum carried him to the World Championship, where he defeated Botvinnik in March to May of the next year by the score of 12.5 to 9.5.

In 2002 Ger Jan Meijer, the chief of the organization, was able to bring Korchnoi, Benkö and Averbach back to Curaçao. The event started with a dedicated Openings Ceremony. International Master Hans Böhm was heading the discussion between the veterans to find out what really happened in 1962. It became more or less obvious that Petrosian and Geller had an agreement with each other to spare each other with short draws.

Local chess player Alex Roose was still a child when he attended the 1962 tournament and he found it an omission that a tournament book was never made of this battle between giants. In 2002 he found Jan Timman to accomplish this mission. Timman worked many months to complete the book with the title: “Curaçao 1962, the Battle of Minds that shook the International Chess World”

Ger Jan Meijer and Fabio Mensing were of the opinion that the book should be introduced with a lot of publicity and decided to organize a match between Jan Timman and Lazaro Bruzon. Timman (53) has planned a come- back in 2005 and he already showed his intentions in the Siegeman tournament of this year. He shared the first place with the Indian Grandmaster Sasikiran.


Lazaro Bruzon (Picture Dirk Jan Ten Geuzendam)

Lazaro Bruzon (23) is already the strongest chess player of Latin America and the No. 36 of the world. Last month Bruzon became the national champion of Cuba and this year his first appearance in the A group of the Corus tournament in Wijk aan Zee was a success.

Timman is already on the tropical island and last Saturday he played a simultaneous match against 24 local chess players. He won them all.

Schedule for the Timman- Bruzon match

Saturday June 11 16h30 EST Rapid match 1
Saturday June 11 18h00 EST Rapid match 2
Sunday June 12 16h30 EST Rapid match 3
Sunday June 12 18h00 EST Rapid match 4
Monday June 13 14h00 EST Classic match 1
Tuesday June 14 14h00 EST Classic match 2
Thursday June 16 14h00 EST Classic match 3
Friday June 17 14h00 EST Classic match 4

In addition there is an Open Rapid tournament (U12, U20, >20) on Saturday June 11 with finals on Sunday June 12.


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