Sunday, August 22, 2010

Chess Femme News

Some coverage on the recently concluded Girls U-20 World Chess Championship in Poland.  USA's Alisa Melekhina is mentioned for her top-10 finish (best by a US player since 1999)  but you wouldn't know it by reading the title of the article!
Chess: Dmitry Andreikin wins world junior title
Los Angeles Times
By Jack Peters, Special to the Los Angeles Times
August 22, 2010

The Russian Women's Team in the China v. Russia match gets mentioned in a New York Times article:  The Russian women beat the Chinese women, 64 to 61.  Yep, that's it.  The rest of the article is about the games of the second-string Russian Men's Team.  Go figure.
In Race for Global Dominance, China Is Gaining on Russia
Published: August 22, 2010

A new column by GM Susan Polgar is available at Lubbock Online.  This week she pays tribute to the graduating members of the Knight Raiders Chess Team at Texas Tech and provides an indepth analysis of a game from the FIDE Women's Grand Prix at Jermuk held earlier this year, in which Nan Dzagnidze ran away with the tournament.  Antoaneta Stefanova – Nana Dzagnidze. 
Lubbock Online
(Lubbock Avalance Journal)
Polgar: A fond farewell to the graduating Texas Tech Knight Raiders
August 21, 2010

This next is not chess-femme related news, but it mentions a player I developed a fondness for way back in 1999 when FIDE staged a Knock-Out World Chess Championship in August in Las Vegas.  The ultimate winner was GM Alexander Khalifman.  Khalifman was mentioned today in Andy Solstis's column at the New York Post online:
Double blunder-itis
Last Updated: 8:05 AM, August 22, 2010
Does anyone remember the K-O Championship of 1999?  Probably not.
But I won't ever forget it, because it was the first and only chess tournament I've ever attended, and it was the one and only time I was within touching distance of chess stars like GM Judit Polgar, GM Alexei Shirov (who was very cute back them, but then, weren't we all!), GM Michael Adams who had no grey hair back then and his nose seemed must shorter than it does now, and GM Vladimir Akopian, who was quite the hunk in 1999, etc. etc.  I was in the live audience watching quarter-final play at Caesar's Palace on Friday, August 13, 1999.  Polgar was playing against Khalifman, whom I didn't know anything about.  She needed a win to stay in the championship but could only muster a draw and with that, she was out of the tournament.  Khalifman would go on to win the K-O title.
Well, back in those days I didn't know a thing about chess - and I still don't - but then, as now, that didn't stop me writing about it, LOL!  So, if you are interested, I did a bunch of posts at the old Art Bell message board, the fore-runner of a blog) which we saved, and I also compiled some interesting commentary on the 1999 K-O by renowned chess writers.  I still find it lots of fun to read over those old posts - and recall many fond memories from that trip to Las Vegas.  Darlings!  Who the hell goes to Las Vegas in August, the hottest time of the year in an already hot city?  Only crazy people like me - and FIDE. 
And if you need any proof that nothing ever changes in the world of chess politics - NOTHING - you've only to read some of the articles about the 1999 K-O to confirm that, as Solomon said, there is nothing new under the Sun...

Vegas Views from Chess Cafe's "Skittles Room" Archive - by Hanon W. Russell

High Anxiety from Chess Cafe's "Dutch Treat" Archives, August, 1999 - by Hans Ree

Las Vegas: Surprise, surprise!! from Chess Cafe's "An Arbiter's Notebook" Archives, September, 1999 - by Geurt Gijssen

Is Khalifman the Real World Champion? from Chess Cafe's "The Kibitzer" Archives, September, 1999 - by Tim Harding

Odd One Out from Chess Cafe's "The Miles Report" Archives, September, 1999 - by Tony Miles

Chess writer and columnist Manisha Mohite writes this week at the Deccan Herald online about proper use of a Queen sacrifice - great stuff even if I understand perhaps one ounce of it.
Chess Checks
Make full use of the Queen sacrifice
Manisha Mohite, August 22
The Queen is the most powerful and attractive piece on the chessboard and games always become interesting and exciting after this piece is sacrificed.

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