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tikay
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« Reply #60 on: August 09, 2012, 06:11:50 AM »




And something less cerebral:

Magnus Carlsen playing a friendly game against a Norwegian junior player. She gets 9.5 minutes on her clock to make all her moves.

Magnus gets 30 seconds. Total. If he takes one second between her pressing her clock and him pressing his every move, he will have to beat her inside 30 moves.

It's a little on the grainy side so you might find the actual game hard to follow. But you can see just how the black pieces come forward to attack together.

What amuses me is how, when there is a distraction, Carlsen looks up to see what's going on. He has 30 seconds on his clock and he is cooler than Usain Bolt in the last 5 metres of a 100m heat.



It is actually a bit sad to watch that, in a way.  The little girl is dithering & not at all sure what to do, & Mr Hero knows EXACTLY what she will do, & EXACTLY what he will do long before she actually makes her move.

Painful to watch, in a way.
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tikay
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« Reply #61 on: August 09, 2012, 06:20:32 AM »


I had a good read up on Alexander Alekhine after your two Posts about him.

Some man!

His Wiki page is a purler, & worth a read.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Alekhine


This is a great read, too......(excuse the cumbersome link)


http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=alexander+Alekhine+chess&view=detail&id=B8B8EB8C42DDBDF453DD0B5AF67F569BC4F26F6B&FORM=IDFRIR&adlt=strict



Here our hero plays Mr Romanovsky.


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Tal
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« Reply #62 on: August 09, 2012, 08:08:41 AM »




And something less cerebral:

Magnus Carlsen playing a friendly game against a Norwegian junior player. She gets 9.5 minutes on her clock to make all her moves.

Magnus gets 30 seconds. Total. If he takes one second between her pressing her clock and him pressing his every move, he will have to beat her inside 30 moves.

It's a little on the grainy side so you might find the actual game hard to follow. But you can see just how the black pieces come forward to attack together.

What amuses me is how, when there is a distraction, Carlsen looks up to see what's going on. He has 30 seconds on his clock and he is cooler than Usain Bolt in the last 5 metres of a 100m heat.



It is actually a bit sad to watch that, in a way.  The little girl is dithering & not at all sure what to do, & Mr Hero knows EXACTLY what she will do, & EXACTLY what he will do long before she actually makes her move.

Painful to watch, in a way.

Time handicapping for blitz games is pretty standard. The 9.5-0.5 is extreme but it's also worth saying that the opponent is not a complete novice.

I played a British Grandmaster about a year ago in a series of "fun" games for a couple of hours. Every time he won, he had to sacrifice time for the next game. We started at 5 v 5 but were soon at 5 v 2 and then 5 v 1. I managed to get one checkmate against him from 12 games but was winning heavily in 4 others, which was enormously frustrating.

Carlsen could give that GM a handicap and be favourite, such is the gap.

As for the girl, there is always a feeling of "I really wish I were better at this!" But it's the only way someone of her standard would get a winnable game against the World Number 1.

I can only say - and hopefully those who have played the game a bit (JonMW?) - it's less humiliating than it looks. It isn't, for example, analogous to playing Roger Federer where he has to play left handed.

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« Reply #63 on: August 09, 2012, 09:59:58 AM »

One thing to watch on this clip is how the girl hovers over the piece she wants to move for a few seconds, while she does a last scout around the board to check she hasn't missed anything immediate.

This isn't a novice thing; pretty much everyone but the very top does it. Watch Carlsen's eyes. He's drawn to where she's hovering and already his calculations have begun. Of course, he will have thought about the possible responses already but his reply can be so quick because he knows what is coming.

In poker, people will, when facing a bet, ask how much it is, count out the chips, count what they have left, ask the bettor whether they want a call, feign to throw the chips over the line but pull them back, mull, mull and mull some more...then raise.

If you hover over a piece, 19 times out of 20, that is the piece you are moving. I'm not aware that I have ever seen a player hover over a piece on one side of the board purely for deception.

On reflection, I might try it!
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tikay
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« Reply #64 on: August 09, 2012, 10:13:16 AM »

One thing to watch on this clip is how the girl hovers over the piece she wants to move for a few seconds, while she does a last scout around the board to check she hasn't missed anything immediate.

This isn't a novice thing; pretty much everyone but the very top does it
. Watch Carlsen's eyes. He's drawn to where she's hovering and already his calculations have begun. Of course, he will have thought about the possible responses already but his reply can be so quick because he knows what is coming.

In poker, people will, when facing a bet, ask how much it is, count out the chips, count what they have left, ask the bettor whether they want a call, feign to throw the chips over the line but pull them back, mull, mull and mull some more...then raise.

If you hover over a piece, 19 times out of 20, that is the piece you are moving. I'm not aware that I have ever seen a player hover over a piece on one side of the board purely for deception.

On reflection, I might try it!

Ahh, my bad. That is EXACTLY what caught my eye, & I wrongly assumed that only a complete novice would do that. Seems an odd thing to do, but yes, Hero would get an advance read from that, thus speeding up his reaction time.

We see it in poker too - newbies tend to play with theier cards in an odd manner, simply because they do not know what to do. And that in itself is often a tell.
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« Reply #65 on: August 10, 2012, 08:59:24 PM »

At amateur levels, there are plenty of stories any chess player can tell you about people's attempts to put them off.

One of the silly ones you get is done in a situation where you make a sacrifice. The idea of a sacrifice is to lose a piece of yours but specifically because you have a tactic behind it. So, you want your opponent to take your bishop/pawn/queen and then you can deliver the hidden checkmate, for example.

The trick you get crafty juniors (or crafty men against juniors) pulling is looking really disappointed when they make the sacrificial move. Sometimes they will actually sigh or go "oh shucks" in the hope you go "oh he's left his queen in prise! I'll have that!" and then fall into the trap. It's a real novice thing but it nevertheless actually does happen!

The most extreme form of it happened to me when I was about 11. I played in a tournament in Derby in an open-aged comp, where the players were separated into 4 groups, based on ability/rating. So I happened to be playing a man in his fifties in this particular game.

We'd played about 15 moves each and I went off to the toilet while my opponent thought about his next move. As is the way - not everyone does this but most probably do on some level - I was thinking about the position while I spent my penny and had a plan to use my already active knights to mount an attack. I had worked out a variation of moves if he made a particular response and, as I walked back to the board, had a pretty good idea of what I was going to do next.

When I got to the board, I had a shock.

The knight - the one I was going to move and mount the attack with - had moved. But it was MY knight. And it hadn't moved (as my old maths teacher used to say) in an L-shape; it had moved just one square to the left.

I haven't seen this before or since. I asked the man whether the knight had moved and he assured me it hadn't. I asked if he could see on his score sheet (all players have to record the moves on paper) when the knight moved to that square. He showed me. "Can you see on mine?" I asked, thinking about doubting myself.

While he mused, I pointed out the path the Knight had taken - b1 -> d2 -> f1 -> g3 -> f5. Why was it now on e5?!

He simply went "Oh!" and did no more than move it back to f5 and press my clock.

I was completely taken aback. To this day, I am convinced that he moved it deliberately, expecting that I wouldn't notice. When I told others the sequence of event, skullduggery was the only conclusion. There had been no accidental knocking over of pieces - so said the people on the table next to me - and he had no need to touch my knight in playing his move.

I made sure I won that game and took enormous pleasure in doing so.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2012, 09:03:26 PM by Tal » Logged

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« Reply #66 on: August 10, 2012, 10:28:01 PM »

Could Magnus beat Chris Rock though ? doubt it Tongue
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Tal
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« Reply #67 on: August 10, 2012, 11:01:51 PM »

Could Magnus beat Chris Rock though ? doubt it Tongue

Just looked it up in an old chess book. Turns out:

Chris Rock < Magnus Carlsen < Chuck Norris
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« Reply #68 on: August 13, 2012, 01:31:24 PM »

Move over Kapersky, MilliDonk has returned to the board after almost 2 decades out of the game.

A 3.5hr battle of the minds resulted in the opponent being forced to resign.

Cries of "misclick" could be heard from the stands but MilliCheck does not accept prisoners.

 Click to see full-size image.
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« Reply #69 on: August 13, 2012, 01:35:12 PM »

Fine work, sir.

Yes, Kaspersky must be quaking in his reboots.
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« Reply #70 on: August 13, 2012, 09:37:06 PM »

Nice easy starter for ten tonight: What was the influence of The Black Death on chess?

In telling stories of some of the great chess names, I’ve strayed away from going too heavy on the detail of their games and I’ll keep that theme for some of my posts. This is one of those, so if you find the stories boring (don’t worry, Tikay; I know you don’t!), do keep coming back, as there will remain a variety of chess posts on this thread!

Joseph Henry Blackburne was one of the most interesting characters of the game. Unlike many of the others I’ll post about (Alekhine, Morphy and Tal included), Blackburne was never regarded as being the best player in the world in his day. Nevertheless, he was a tough match for anyone and had a string of excellent tournament performances in his record. He’d have a few flags on his Hendon Mob.

Where Blackburne excelled was in beating the weaker players in tournaments. Don’t get me wrong; he was right up there in the top handful of players, but he would never be the World Number 1 or the World Champion. He was a brilliant tactician and a giant killer, capable of taking any scalp.

Blackburne was born in December 1841 to a Manchester family who travelled the nation preaching about the ills of alcohol and the virtues of temperance. It is believed that he learned to play chess at 18, which is positively ancient in chess terms. Two years later, he beat the world’s best player (Wilhelm Steinitz) in a strong tournament in London, although he did finish towards the bottom of the tournament in the end.

The overall Blackburne story is here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Henry_Blackburne

What separates him from most are the stories about him. As with many people, you can never really know which ones are real, which are embellished and which are just plain made up.

What isn’t in doubt is that, despite being from such an abstemious family, Blackburne loved to drink. When I say he loved to drink, he LOVED to drink. I’ve never heard of anyone – Ozzy Osbourne, Oliver Reed, the Fast Show’s Rowley Birkin, QC – who has more whiskey-related stories about them.

Blackburne was so famous for his love of Scotch that he was often paid in Scotch for tournament appearances or simultaneous displays, rather than money like everyone else.  There is a story that, on his insistence, he received an advance of his fee for a tournament in 1895 in Hastings – a case of the finest. He polished that off during the first six games and, well, his standard of play dropped off somewhat after that…

A story not included in the wiki page is my favourite. Picture the scene: a posh, Victorian London club on Pall Mall. The sort of place you have to be invited in by a friend (usually with a peerage). Blackburne is playing an amateur over several whiskeys and any number of cigars. The crowds are raucous, their surnames double-barreled. I see it as being rather like the Drones Club that Bertie Wooster likes to frequent in the Jeeves novels.

Further ado-less, we turn to the game. Blackburne is in a frightful mess. He is playing a man whose name was never reported (known only as ‘Mr C’ - more likely because chess people aren’t interested unless you’re a chess player, rather than him being a spy) but it is understood he was no more than a novice player. A report of the game refers to the atmosphere “boiling over with excitement”, because our hero – now several stiff glasses in – was losing badly.

Blackburne was a resourceful fellow and losing badly didn’t mean lost. He picked up Mr C’s bishop and put it one square diagonally from his opponent’s king.

“Check, sir!”

Bewildered and, quite possibly, feeling slightly worse for wear himself, Mr C captured it.

Blackburne triumphantly declared, “You can’t take your own bishop!”

Mr C agreed with this completely logical statement, apologised and moved his king away, only to find Blackburne leaping from his chair, immediately checkmating the flummoxed Mr C to roars of hysterical laughter from the assembled crowd.

I’m not sure whether Blackburne got away with this in the end, but what a fantastic image it conjures of Victorian clubs and those who played chess in them.

Black Death? This was the name given to him by commentators of a tournament in Vienna in 1873. His full black beard probably helped!
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« Reply #71 on: August 13, 2012, 09:39:54 PM »

 Click to see full-size image.


Joseph Henry Blackburne
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« Reply #72 on: August 13, 2012, 09:45:38 PM »

Cool story, more stories would be greatly appreciated.
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Tal
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« Reply #73 on: August 13, 2012, 09:46:53 PM »

Move over Kapersky, MilliDonk has returned to the board after almost 2 decades out of the game.

A 3.5hr battle of the minds resulted in the opponent being forced to resign.

Cries of "misclick" could be heard from the stands but MilliCheck does not accept prisoners.

 Click to see full-size image.


I should just point out to observers that Mr Outrageous has just moved his queen to e1, only to find that Mr Milli-hero has lopped it straight off with his own queen. Quite a dramatic error. More than a mere oopsicle.
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« Reply #74 on: August 13, 2012, 09:48:36 PM »

Cool story, more stories would be greatly appreciated.

Excellent. Do check out the wiki page for more stories about him in the meantime  Smiley
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