It is a question commonly posed to Grandmasters -- business-suit wearing giants with perennially furrowed brows, constantly wrinkled above troubled looks of genuine stress -- can you still have fun?
It was 8:30 on a Monday night, and the 2014 Sinquefield Cup -- the strongest chess tournament in history -- was over. The oppressive, tense atmosphere of “event mode” was gone, and the Club was no longer packed with giddy fans seeking autographs. The closing ceremony had finished up the night before, the shiny Cup had been hoisted by GM Fabiano Caruana and his transcendent performance. The excitement, for a fan like me, had already passed its zenith.
Finally, the Chess Club was returning back to its normal, relaxing state. Or so I thought.
SAINT LOUIS (July 29, 2014) -- The 2014 Sinquefield Cup will be the highest-rated tournament in the history of chess, bringing six of the world’s top-nine Grandmasters together at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis.
Last year, the inaugural super-tournament thrilled spectators as the strongest chess competition ever held on U.S. soil. For its 2014 encore, beginning August 27 to September 7, the tournament will be the strongest ever held on earth, its six players averaging a historical peak FIDE rating of 2802.
The name Bobby Fischer is synonymous with outstanding intellect, intimidating competitiveness and intense focus. His is a uniquely American success story that nearly everyone has heard - even if they can’t tell a rook from a bishop.
So what makes Fischer so captivating?
The Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis is competing for a Grow St. Louis grant -- and you can help! Vote for the CCSCSL as your favorite Saint Louis non-profit, where we will use the $20,000 grant to help expand our scholastic programming around the city. That amount will fund at least 22 instructional programs and reach over 500 students around St. Louis!
Visit the Grow Saint Louis Facebook page and vote for us -- once a day, through August 3!
Chess Grandmaster Bryan Smith presents a game from the first World Championship match between Wilhelm Steinitz and Johannes Zuckertort.
This article was originally posted on stlpublicradio.org on July 7.
It’s a great time to be a St. Louis girl in chess, I think. Just look at what surrounds them: Webster University coach Susan Polgar is adding something new to her resume. Right there at the bottom of page 11.
A few weeks ago, while the U.S. Junior Closed was taking place upstairs in the tournament hall, we had our eye on another up-and-coming young player. Since 2012, 12-year-old Ronit Kirumaki and his father, Ashok, have been regular faces at the CCSCSL. From his humble beginnings as an enthusiastic amateur, Ronit has vaulted up through the classes and now sits on the cusp of Expert. Ronit is riding an outstanding hot streak, tying for first earlier this month in Open section of the Amateur and Premiere tournament with IM Levan Bregadze, and winning the Summer Slam Bash.
This article originally appeared on stlpublicradio.org on July 2.
The Triple Crown of chess is complete, in more ways than one.
Just this past week, Grandmaster Kayden Troff, 16, snagged the U.S. Junior Closed Championship crown after nine rounds of fierce competition against the top players under 21 in the nation. Troff finished the event in style, winning his final four games to finish a point and a half ahead of the rest of the field.