Magnus Carlsen about Fischer, Karpov, Kasparov, Kramnik, Anand, Polgar, Hou Yifan and himself

by Johannes Fischer
5/5/2021 – On Sunday, 2 May, Magnus Carlsen won the New in Chess Classic Online Tournament, the first of the so far five Meltwater Champions Chess Tour tournaments the World Champion, who is as spoilt for success as he is hungry for it, could win. But Carlsen did not only entertain and impress at the board (or screen). In short video clips, shown during the live broadcast, he revealed what he thinks about previous World Champions and showed his amazing chess memory. | Image: Screenshot

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The New in Chess Classic was a rapid tournament, as are all tournaments of the Meltwater Chess Champions Tour. This format leads to a lot of games and a lot of chess entertainment, not least through the live broadcasts in which different teams of commentators follow and explain the action. But what do you do in a live broadcast between the rounds when no games are played?

Here, the live broadcast with David Howell, Jovanka Houska and Kaja Snare again relied on the appeal of the World Champion. They showed a series of video clips, in which Carlsen was asked to assess five previous World Champions, Judit Polgar, Hou Yifan, and himself with the help of four keywords:

  • Genius
  • Entertainment
  • Influence
  • Sanity

Carlsen's answers are interesting and reveal, among other things, how he sees himself compared to his predecessors, and of which player of this select group he thinks the most as a chess player.

Carlsen about Fischer

Master Class Vol.1: Bobby Fischer

No other World Champion was more infamous both inside and outside the chess world than Bobby Fischer. On this DVD, a team of experts shows you the winning techniques and strategies employed by the 11th World Champion.

Grandmaster Dorian Rogozenco delves into Fischer’s openings, and retraces the development of his repertoire. What variations did Fischer play, and what sources did he use to arm himself against the best Soviet players? Mihail Marin explains Fischer’s particular style and his special strategic talent in annotated games against Spassky, Taimanov and other greats. Karsten Müller is not just a leading international endgame expert, but also a true Fischer connoisseur.

Carlsen about Karpov

Carlsen about Kasparov

Master Class Vol.7: Garry Kasparov

On this DVD a team of experts gets to the bottom of Kasparov's play. In over 8 hours of video running time the authors Rogozenko, Marin, Reeh and Müller cast light on four important aspects of Kasparov's play: opening, strategy, tactics and endgame.

Carlsen about Kramnik

Carlsen about Anand

Carlsen about Judit Polgar

Carlsen about Hou Yifan

Carlsen about Carlsen

In another clip, Carlsen once again demonstrated his amazing chess memory – and surprisingly good knowledge of popular culture.

Memory test



Johannes Fischer was born in 1963 in Hamburg and studied English and German literature in Frankfurt. He now lives as a writer and translator in Nürnberg. He is a FIDE-Master and regularly writes for KARL, a German chess magazine focusing on the links between culture and chess. On his own blog he regularly publishes notes on "Film, Literature and Chess".


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