Archive for anand

14 May: Opening ceremony- part 2/3

Posted in Anand, Dvorkovich, Gelfand, Gorbachev, Karpov, Moscow, Tretyakov with tags , , , , , on May 14, 2012 by Chessurfer

As promised in an earlier post, I will show you some more pictures of the opening ceremony in the Tretyakov Gallery on Friday, 11 May. Legendary chess players, billionaire oil traders, Kremlin insiders, a world famous piano player, celeb chicks and many other VIP guests attended the ceremony. It provided a “glimpse of the weird and politically connected Russian chess scene”, as the Moscow Times stated in Monday 14 May issue. Read the report in the newspaper about the opening press conference and the ceremony here: http://www.themoscowtimes.com/arts_n_ideas/article/world-chess-championship-starts-in-moscow/458432.html.

Opening ceremony

After the opening press conference, only accredited  photographers and cameramen were allowed to come to the official opening and they ran into the hall to get the best position for some nice shots of the players and the VIPs.

I still wonder how this unaccredited photographer made it into the official ceremony? She must have had some good arguments. 

Most interviewed VIP this evening was former President Mikhail Gorbachev. I managed to shake his hand and say hello.

After having a short chat with Gorbi, the interviewers moved on to match sponsor Andrei Filatov, who brought his sweet little daughter to the opening.

Gelfand: “Hey Vishy, why do these photographers only have eyes for Gorbi. We are supposed to be the main actors.”

Anand:” I have done this before. Let’s shake hands and you will see how these guys will run in our direction”.

Gelfand: “Haha, good idea. Look, they are coming.”

“Yeah, we did it!”

Back to business: Aruna and Vishy Anand with the Ambassador of India, Ajai Malhotra.

In the front: Arkady Dvorkovich, chairman of the Russian chess federation and presidential economic aide, chatting with former President Mikhail Gorbachev and FIDE President/alien abductee Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.

Drawing of colours- exclusive pictures! 

After a few speeches by dignitaries like Dvorkovich,  Ilyumzhinov and the players, it was time for the drawing of colours. The official site http://moscow2012.fide.com/en/ describes the draing as follows:  “Ashot Vardapetyan, the Chief Arbiter of the competition, held the draw in an original style which emphasised the unbreakable connection between chess and world culture. “Paintings” were displayed on easels on the stage, depicting diagrams of two games that Anand and Gelfand had played previously (back in the 1990s). One of these contests had been won beautifully by the current world champion, while the other ended in a striking victory for the challenger.

Two small wooden boxes had been prepared for the grandmasters, containing pots of paint and brushes. Anand was given first choice, as world champion. The players approached their “paintings” – each one, of course, going to the game which he had succeeded in winning – dipped their brushes in the paint and signed the “canvas”. At that moment, the spectators saw that Anand had signed his picture with white paint, and Gelfand had signed his with black. Thus in the first round the world champion would play with White.

Puh, quite an effort to arrange something simple like the drawing of colours. “Normal” chessplayers usually take a white and a black pawn, hide them behind the back and the opponent says “right hand or left hand”. But ok, “normal” chess players do not play chess in one of the most prominent galleries in the world

In this blog I promised to show you some off-stage pictures. Ok, ok, here a a few truly “exclusive pictures”. During the inspection of the playing hall, Anand and Gelfand rehearsed the painting procedure in the basement and here are some of the pictures I made. I promised to wait a few days before publishing the pictures here.

Leonardo d’ Anand in action.

“I hope that my son Akhil does not start painting on my chessboards”

Boris Dali tries three different squares.

The final result of the rehearsal. Wonder what they do with this board.

Anand: “Hmm, I like the one from the rehearsal better. You can hardly see the white paint on the board. Hey wait, they changed the position!”

“Yes Vishy, this is the game I won”.

By popular demand: Yes, there will be a part 3!

Because several people in the press room asked when I will publish more pictures of the opening ceremony and afterparty, I will do  one more  picture gallery of the opening. So there is even more to come! Candid, exclusive, original, sexy!

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11 May: Rowing through Grünfeld waters

Posted in Anand, cartoon, stiefel with tags , , , on May 12, 2012 by Chessurfer

Here is a cartoon by German artist Frank Stiefel, who draws many cartoons for the Chess Tigers. He also did some great work during the Chess Classic Mainz events. He will draw a cartoon after every game for the Chess Tigers website and this blog.

 

 

11 May: Opening ceremony part 1/3

Posted in Anand, Chess, Filatov, Gelfand, The match 2012, Tretyakov with tags , , , , , on May 11, 2012 by Chessurfer

The World Chess Championship was opened in the Tretyakov Gallery on Thursday. The opening press conference started at around 18:30 and at 20:15 the official opening finally started, in an absolutely beautiful setting in the Tretyakov Gallery. I have made tons of pictures and it is just too much to post everything in only one go. But…I don’t want to show you the usual pictures, which you can find on the main chess websites. Here is a first selection of the press conference and the opening. I will post some more shots of the opening and after party later.

The livestream of the opening is available on the official website. http://moscow2012.fide.com/en/ in excellent quality. Highly recommended!

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The entrance of the Tretyakov Gallery. It is the first indication that there is a chess match going on in Moscow. I did not see any signs or posters announcing the match in the city.

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Accreditation for journalists and VIPs. The tall guy on the right is Ulrich Stock, who writes excellent articles for the German quality paper “Die Zeit“. Here is a link to an interview with Boris Gelfand. http://www.zeit.de/2012/18/WOS-Interview-Gelfand

Update: Stock wrote an article (in German) about the match and the opening ceremony. “Was zählt, ist auf dem Brett”.

http://www.zeit.de/sport/2012-05/schach-wm-anand-gelfand

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Talking about tall guys. This is Peter Doggers, editor in chief of ChessVibes, getting ready for the press conference. Check his reports on  http://chessvibes.com/.

Man, he is tall. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_tallest_people.

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Doggers: “Haha, I was standing on a table”.

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VIP guest GM Evgeny Bareev with Etery Kublashvili, who takes pictures for the official match website. A couple of years ago during a match in Maastricht, where Evgeny was playing against the computer engine Hiarcs, we went to the movies. It was a James Bond movie in which the North Koreans were the “bad guys”. Evgeny was disappointed after the movie: “The Russians are not the bad guys anymore, not even in a Bond movie”.

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Dozens of journalists and photographers….

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….left their laptops alone in the adjacent room.

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After the press conference, Vishy and Aruna Anand met match sponsor Andrey Filatov in the VIP room.

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Filatov donated this chess set made of mammoth bones to the Tretyakov Gallery.

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Lots of chairs for the FIDE guys….but where are they?

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…not at the buffet? Remarkable.

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A nice film about the world championships was shown before the speeches started. This is José Raúl Capablanca, world chess champion from 1921-1927. You can read an excellent article in the latest New in  Chess Magazine about this real Mozart of Chess, or get some information here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jos%C3%A9_Ra%C3%BAl_Capablanca

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The legendary Robert James Fischer, the 11th world champion and inventor of Chess960. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chess960

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And of course Gelfand and Anand were introduced to the audience in the film. Time to play some chess now!

In part 2: Michail Gorbachov, Anatoli Karpov, Nigel Short, Sergey Karjakin and a hot photographer.

09 May: Playing hall inspection

Posted in Anand, Chess, Gelfand, Moscow, Sofia 2010, The match 2012 with tags , , , , , , , , on May 9, 2012 by Chessurfer

As promised, I will show you some of the pictures of the inspection of the playing hall on 08 May. In a previous blog entry, you could see that the work in the State Tretyakov Gallery is in progress and I am not sure if the workers had a day off, because of Victory Day and the Moscow Victory Day Parade on 9 May.

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The weather was not very nice today, so I chose to take a picture of the final rehearsal of last Sunday. It looks a bit as if WW3 is about to start. Weird. The hotel informed us that the windows had to be closed and I had two scary looking security officers in my room who checked that. I actually heard that it was supposed to rain today, but somehow the Kreml managed to keep the rain away with chemicals. No idea how that works.

Update 10 May: In The Moscow Times (http://www.themoscowtimes.com/) I read the following: “To ensure an fine day, military aircraft traditionally seed the clouds in advance of the event with silver and liquid nitrogen, but they apparantly failed in their task despite early morning promises to clear the leaden skies above Moscow”.

The Moscow Victory Day Parade in Moscow’s Red Square was held today to commemorate the 67th anniversary of the capitulation of Nazi Germany in 1945. The parade marked the Soviet Union’s victory in the Great Patriotic War on the day on the signing of the German act of capitulation, on the very midnight of May 9, 1945 (Russian time).

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Literally thousands of soldiers marching on! Very impressive.

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Live on all Russian channels. “Ура Победе”

Inspection

Let’s get back to the inspection. Two years ago, in Sofia, the final inspection of the playing hall did not really run smoothly. About 30 photographers were waiting for the players to check the hall and they were blocking the way for Anand and Topalov in their hunt for the best picture. Anand and Topalov did not check the venue together: Anand checked the hall, the board and the light first and only when he was finished, Topalov came in.

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Vishy did not get a chance to check the board and the chair properly. He was hunted all over over the place by photographers. Hans-Walter Schmitt (grey jacket) tried to act as a bodyguard.

Here in Moscow, the inspection was well organized in a very relaxed atmosphere. Only Eteri Kublashvili, the photographer for the official website took pictures which you can see here: /14/”>http://moscow2012.fide.com/en/fotos/196-playing-hall-inspection-eng#!prettyPhoto

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Hans-Walter is looking at a picture Eteri made. Notice the nice carpet.

And here are some more pictures:

Knock knock, who is there? FIDE Vice president Israel Gelfer wants to join the inspection.

Chairman of the management board of the Russian Chess Federation Ilya Levitov talking to HWS. Must have been interesting, according to the expression on HW’s face.

“I am telling you, Aruna, I am not going to stand here all the time during the games”.

Ah, they have chairs. Ilya Levitov is happy, but Vishy decided not to take this high-tech chair.

“Ok, this one is fine.”

The challenger: Boris Gelfand testing his chairs. Seems to be ok.

Two chairs, a board, pieces, a clock, what else do you need for a world championship match?

Boris and Vishy chatting about the kids.

I hope they check the batteries.

The scoresheets for the world championship games.

Talking over some final details with FIDE Deputy President Georgios Makropoulos, Hon. Vice President Prof. Kurt Jungwirth and referee Ashot Vardapetyan.

Vishy Anand getting wired for an interview for Russian television.

Hope you got some good questions for me?!

Now it is Boris’ turn to answer the same questions.

Boris Gelfand brought a very nice information booklet to the Tretyakov, and he gladly signed and personalized my copy. Thanks Boris!

08 May: Construction site ahead!

Posted in Anand, Chess, Gelfand, Moscow, The match 2012, Tretyakov with tags , , , , , , on May 8, 2012 by Chessurfer

Essentialy you just need a board, chess pieces and a clock to play a game of chess, so Vishy Anand and Boris Gelfand could just play anywhere. But…playing a match for the world championship is a different piece of cake and since the match will be be played in the wonderful Tretyakov State Gallery (http://www.tretyakovgallery.ru/en/) in the Russian capital Moscow, lots of time and effort is needed to create the best possible environment for the players, the audience, the representatives of the press, arbiters, important guests and FIDE officials. Important questions like: “where is the VIP room?” and: “where I do find the buffet?” need to be answered.

Today, on Tuesday 08 May the first official appointment for the players and their delegations was planned at 17.00 local time: the inspection of the venue. Tomorrow I will post some pictures of the players, but today I want to show you some of the ongoing work in the Tretyakov State Gallery. Although it still looks messy, one can already see, three days before the start of the match, that the playing hall is going to look absolutely stunning!

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This was the first sight of the entrance of the Tretyakov Gallery. The worker on the right hand side is not really in a hurry to get things ready.

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The entrance for….

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…representatives of the press and guests, who will get their badges here. BTW, the entrance is free for everybody!

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We’re getting closer to the stage…

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Ah, I can already see a chess board!

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The stage, the board and a big digital board for the spectators to follow the game from the auditorium. Let’s go on stage…

Let’s hope the workers don’t forget this construction frame, although chief arbiter Ashot Vardapetyan would have a perfect view from the top.

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Now that is a fine choice of chairs for the players…

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The digital board on the stage. Look at the names of the players! The old and new president Vladimir Putin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vladimir_putin) playing against Gennady Zyuganov, First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gennady_Zyuganov).

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Yours truly and Hans-Walter Schmitt took the opportunity to play a couple of moves on the world championship board! Draw agreed after 7 moves (Slav defence). I played white (Putin). We have the same haircut.

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Walking through the Gallery with the players, Makropoulos, Gelfer, Levitov and others.

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Creating space for players and spectators.

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A sneak preview of the stage on the monitors, which are placed all over the place. It’s gonna be good!

07 May – Press reviews from India and Israel

Posted in Anand, Chess, Gelfand, Moscow, The match 2012 with tags , , , , on May 7, 2012 by Chessurfer

In just a few days Anand and Gelfand will start the first game of their match. We can read previews in the chess press, but it is also helpful to read some articles from India (Anand) and Israel (Gelfand).

In the Indian magazine “Daily News and Analysis” (DNA) we find a preview by Vijay Tagore. Quote:  “Over the next three weeks, his credentials, competence and character will be come under the scanner. Does he have the wherewithal to win the title? Does he have the desire to do it again? And can he become one of the few men to become world champion five times?”

More here: http://www.dnaindia.com/sport/report_viswanathan-anand-s-mission-moscow_1684993

In “The Indian Express” the article “Meet the candidate” is worth reading.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/meet-the-candidate/945878/

On Haaretz (Israel), you can read the article “Between Israel and Russia, chess is more than just a game”. Recommended.

http://www.haaretz.com/weekend/magazine/between-israel-and-russia-chess-is-more-than-just-a-game-1.428084

And in the Jerusalem Post there is an article about Gelfand: “Israel’s chess master readies for championship”.

http://www.jpost.com/NationalNews/Article.aspx?id=265412

05 May- Sofia 2010 – looking back

Posted in Sofia 2010 with tags , , on May 5, 2012 by Chessurfer

Two years ago Vishy Anand won the chess world championship in Sofia, Bulgaria. Maybe you do remember, that Vishy and his team had to take a car from Frankfurt to Sofia (2000 kilometers) due to the outburst of the Icelandic volcanoe Eyjafjallajökull. More information about the volcanoe can be found here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eyjafjallaj%C3%B6kull.

If you want to read how Vishy and his team survived the Rumanian roads, crossed the borders with eight passports from five different countries and even had to go on a ferry to reach Sofia after 40 hours, go here: http://www.chesstigers.de/index_news.php?id=2024&rubrik=1 (German version, Endy einer Odyssee) ) or read the English version here on ChessBase: A volcanic trip – with the Lord of the rings, http://chessbase.com/newsdetail.asp?newsid=6269.

Here are a few pictures of the trip, some of them have never been published. Pictures by Christian Bossert and Eric van Reem. All rights reserved.

The Mercedes Sprinter, that took us to Sofia. Thanks to our Dutch drivers!

Rain, potholes, sometimes even dead animals had to be avoided! Horrible!

Welcome to Timisoara!

But… after 42 hours, we arrived at 03.15 AM at the Sofia Hilton!

The match poster.

The Military Club in Sofia, where the match was played.

Shakehands.

Game 12 and final!

Vishy is happy…

And the “A-Team” is happy! From left to right: Christian Bossert, Peter Heine Nielsen, Mark Lefler, Eric van Reem, Rustam Kasimdzhanov, Hans-Walter Schmitt, Vishy Anand, Aruna Anand, Surya Shekhar Ganguly  and Radek Wojtaszek.