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There is a new name near the top of international chess who looks to have the potential to become a threat to Magnus Carlsen’s long reign as world champion.
Vladislav Artemiev, 20, won the Gibraltar Masters with an unbeaten 8.5/10, finishing with 4/5 against the established elite. The young Russian’s preparation for the event and its £25,000 first prize was unorthodox. He got married a few weeks before the start, and commuted every day with a 45-minute walk across the Spanish border.
After Gibraltar, he is established as the leader of the new generation, not only of the talented group of players in their late teens and early twenties in his own country but also of the international guard from Poland, China and Hungary.
This popular event, in its 17th year, now has the state of Gibraltar as its principal sponsor. Key policies include a high prize fund for women (£15,000 first) and a social side whose highlight is the annual Battle of the Sexes played on a giant board.
Formerly Fide ignored Gibraltar, but the global body’s director-general chose the Rock to announce world championship changes, while at Wijk aan Zee the economist and grandmaster Kenneth Rogoff joined its global strategy commission. Fide’s new administration led by Arkady Dvorkovich has made an impressive start.
Barden v Geoff Harris, Nottingham 1954. The final round of the British Championship, a white win needed for the outright title, and I missed it with 1 Bxg7+. Can you do better?
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