07 March 2010

Chess960 Fever in Little Sweden

While working on Pictures of a Fischer Random Precursor, I was reminded that Bobby Fischer wasn't the only former World Champion with whom Susan Polgar has played random chess (see her photos of World Champions for the complete list of World Champions she has met and, in most cases, played). In 2004, she played a six game match with Anatoly Karpov, where two of the games used chess960 rules. Chessbase.com reported on the event in Polgar vs Karpov: chess fever in Little Sweden:
'21.09.2004 -- The Clash of the Titans this weekend in Lindsborg, Kansas, began with a magnificent chess parade and ended with a 3:3 score between the two former world champions. The town was gripped by chess fever, and nationwide about ten million people were exposed to the event. Here's a magificently illustrated report by Paul Truong.' • Another Historic Milestone for Women’s Chess [...] When asked about the two Fischer Random chess games in support their fellow World Champion Bobby Fischer, Karpov said that Fischer has done so much for the chess world and he is a great champion. He thinks Fischer Random chess is quite interesting. He also thinks that Fischer should be left alone and be allowed to live out his life in peace. This is also the same sentiment from Susan Polgar. They both agreed that there are two sides to Bobby Fischer and we should honor his great chess accomplishment. [...]

The moves of only one chess960 game, won by Polgar, were included in the report and I wasn't able to locate the moves of the game won by Karpov. The following diagram shows the position in the surviving game just before White castled.

SP558: RNKNQBBR • After 11...Qe8-f7

Here is the complete game.

[Event "Clash of the Titans"]
[Site "Lindsborg, Kansas"]
[Date "2004.09.19"]
[Round "3"]
[White "Susan Polgar"]
[Black "Anatoly Karpov"]
[Result "1-0"]
[Annotator "SP558"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "rnknqbbr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/RNKNQBBR w - - 0 1"]

1.e4 e5 2.f3 f6 3.Nbc3 Bf7 4.Ne3 Ne6 5.Bc4 Bc5 6.Bxe6 Bxe6 7.Ned5 Bxg1 8.Qxg1 d6 9.d4 c6 10.dxe5 fxe5 11.Ne3 Qf7 12.0-0-0 Rd8 13.Qf2 Na6 14.Kb1 Nc7 15.Qg3 h6 16.a3 b5 17.Rd2 Rd7 18.Rhd1 0-0-0 19.Ne2 g5 20.h4 Qf6 21.hxg5 hxg5 22.Nc1 Kb7 23.Nd3 a5 24.Ng4 Bxg4 25.Qxg4 Ne6 26.Qf5 Qe7 27.c3 Kc7 28.Rh1 Rf8 29.Qg4 Nf4 30.Nxf4 gxf4 31.Rh6 Rf6 32.Rh8 Rf8 33.Rh5 {etc. Black lost on time} 1-0

A year later the two former World Champions met again in Lindsborg, this time with a former President of the Soviet Union -- Chess for Peace with Mikhail Gorbachev (Chessbase.com) -- but the six game match featured only traditional chess.

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