Good morning, Wednesday Coffee! There is a lull in chess activity at the top and so this week FIDE–politics will attract more interest in the chess press than usual.
The world’s elite players head home to recover after a very busy past month or so. In the middle of November the very important Palma de Mallorca Grand Prix will take place. This event will be decisive in determining the last qualification spots for the upcoming Candidate’s Tournament early in the new year.
Kirsan rules out legal action against Makro
In his latest blog article, FIDE president Kirsan Ilyumzhinov quotes excerpts of a radio interview he gave the other day in Moscow following the 88th FIDE Congress in Turkey last week. Kirsan has accused Makropoulos and the Presidential Board of trying to exploit the US sanctions against him for their own advantage and profit.
“They appealed to me at 88th FIDE Congress with a proposal not to run for President because of sanctions. According to my lawyers, they cannot make me do it. No way. Therefore, I wasn’t going to start a discussion.” — Kirsan
Instead he will simply let the clock run out and wait until next year’s Presidential Election before taking action. Kirsan also insinuated that he intends to make major changes to the Presidential Board, dropping the names of FaceBook’s Zuckerberg as well as Alibaba’s Ma for the new faces.
“We are open to invite people with innovative ideas. We have members of FIDE Presidential Board who are in their 50s. On the one hand, the expertise is useful but so also are young, energetic and rich men. That’s the way to change the world.” –Kirsan
Karpov :“Russia has the most free press in the world.”
Karpov, guest of honor at the 5th Basamro International Tournament (Rotterdam), gave an interesting interview much of which is quoted at Labirinti e Casematte. In the interview he is asked some pretty tough questions (so very different to the type of soft questions that Kasparov faces in his western interviews). Karpov does not try to hide his admiration and support for Putin.
Karpov also talked about the present generation of top players, in particular Carlsen and Anand :
“Anand and Carlsen are okay, but no, most modern players are of lower level. This is mostly due to the current time control: players nowadays have less time to think, and therefore they think less deeply”.
I suggest the reader take a look at the link above for the rest of the excerpts. Very interesting viewpoints.
Some more information about Jules Therien
Better late than never! On my blog of October 5, 2015 I wrote briefly of one of the grand old men of Quebec Chess, Jules Therien (1906 to 1977), a frequent opponent when I was growing up and playing in Montreal tournaments.
One of his children, Denis, kindly wrote to me yesterday with some corrections and additional information that the reader might be interested in. Check it out!