Magnus Carlsen plays Simul in Dutch Parliament

by Johannes Fischer
2/3/2016 – After winning the Tata Steel tournament in Wijk aan Zee for the fifth time, equalizing the record of Vishy Anand, Magnus Carlsen showed Dutch politicians the intricacies of strategy and tactics: He gave a simul against 30 Dutch politicians in the "Tweede Kammer", the Dutch Parliament. Carlsen only lost to Jeroen van den Berg, the organizer of Wijk aan Zee.

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View from above

Jeroen van den Berg played at the board of Fred Teeven, member of the  "Volkspartij voor Vrijheid en Democratie" (VVD), and former Minister for Justice.

Jeroen van den Berg, the organizer of the
Tata Steel Chess Festival in Wijk aan Zee

Teeven had to leave the board after a couple of moves, Jeroen van den Berg jumped in and inflicted a loss on the World Champion.

The battle begins. Fred Teeven (fourth from the right) is still at the board.

In an interview with the Dutch TV station NOS Carlsen afterwards commented the simul and his loss in light-hearted fashion:

"It was tough. Many strong opponents and I had to resort to tricks. I lost to Jeroen van den Berg. ... I played him for the first time in a simul in 2004. Then it was a draw. Now I lost, so, apparently not everything about my play has changed to the better.

But better [to lose in a simul] than in the tournament."

When asked how he would prepare for such a day and event, Carlsen replied with a smile: "I prepared by playing chess all my life."

Report and videos at NOS...

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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