Today’s Vintage Humor
A Little Friendly Intimidation
From the December 1968 edition of ChessReview. I can write a book about all the ways a player can intimidate his opponent and have enough left over for a second volume.
Suffice to say that deliberately disturbing your opponent is against the rules of chess…but so is cheating, yet many do it anyway!
Chess’ Best Example of Intimidation?
Certainly the story that stands out to me is when, in 1994, Kamsky’s father allegedly threatened to kill his son’s famous opponent during a qualification match leading to the World Championship. LINK1 LINK2 His opponent was none other than English Grandmaster Nigel Short!
Apparently Short went to lodge a complaint with the police, but nothing came of it. He was told by the Spanish police (the match was held in Linares, in the south of Spain) that until the British give back Gibraltar it is not illegal to threaten to kill English tourists. In fact, it was encouraged by the Spanish authorities in those days!
To make a long story short (no pun intended) Nigel Short was (fortunately) not assassinated…but never the less ended up losing the match. (Decades later, Nigel Short continues to religiously visit Gibraltar every chance he has and each time – I suppose – is able to fondly remember his match with Kamsky!)