The Prince and the Governor

8/23/2005 – The FIDE congress that is currently being held in Dresden, Germany, has attracted a number of illustrious guests. The Governor of San Luis in Argentina, where the next world championship is being held, was there to greet and inform the delegates. On Sunday he met with Alexander Prince of Saxony. We bring you a photo report.

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76th FIDE Congress in Dresden

The FIDE Congress is being held from August 17 to 24 in Dresden, Germany. In the above picture we see hon. President Florencio Campomanes, President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov and Vice President Israel Gelfer during the inspection tour of the playing site of the 2008 Olympiad (a full report on this will follow soon).

Campomanes meets with the delegation from San Luis: left the Governor of the region Dr. Rodríguez Saá, right advisor GM Miguel Quinteros. The Argentinian delegation was there to meet the FIDE delegates and explore technical enhancements for the coming world championship tournament.

The Governor, an avid chess player, gets a full demo of the Playchess server from GM Nigel Short, who cannot resist accepting a challenge and playing a few games against a distant opponent.

On the flight from Argentina to Dresden the Governor had played a blindfold game against Miguel Quinteros. It was an Evans Gambit, and he wanted to know how the line they played is handled these days. Nigel obliges, producing a ChessBase 9.0 "Opening report" for Dr. Saá and showing him the different alternatives available in the key positions. They spend a lot of time analysing the game Short-Nielsen, Samba Cup 2003.

Nigel will most likely be the chief commentator at the world championship in San Luis. Quinteros suggests that the Governor put a clause into the contract requiring the GM to give him daily lessons in the Evans and other sharp openings.

That clinches the deal: Dr Saá will get his lessons, Nigel will do the official commentary from San Luis.

In the evening Governor of San Luis received a distinguished guest: Alexander Prinz von Sachsen-Gessaphe (Prince of Saxony), son of Roberto de Afif, Prince de Gessaphe and Maria Anna Josepha Prinzessin von Sachsen. The prince was instrumental in getting the 2008 Chess Olympiad to Dresden.

There is a great surprise in store for Dr. Rodríguez Saá: Prince Alexander not only speaks fluent Spanish, he can even speak it with the San Luis accent. The reason is that he has spent a substantial part of his life in Mexico, and even has Mexican citizenship.

The two spend a couple of hours chatting, with the prince's six-year-young daughter showing off her artistic abilities, and winning all the South American hearts in the process.

A group photo with Miguel Quinteros, Gisela Princess of Bavaria (wife of Alexander), Governor Rodríguez Saá, Prince Alexander and Luis Lusquinos, the main organiser of the San Luis world championship.

A brief dinner encounter between FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov and the Princess and Prince of Saxony. It is amazing how well Kirsan can speak English when the situation requires it.

The Saxony royals receive a personal invitation from the Ilyumzhinov to visit his country of Kalmykia as a presidential guest. Prince Alexander has great interest in the Buddhist faith and is sure to take the Kalmykian head of state up on this invitation.

On a sight-seeing tour through the beautifully restored old city of Dresden we found the above giant mural. It is entitled "Procession of Dukes" and depicts all the rulers of Saxony from the middle ages to recent times.

The mural consists of 24.000 intricately painted tiles of Meissen porcelain, and is over one hundred meters long. If it had been extended a few more meters we would have Alex of Saxony on it too.


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