Beating Kasparov

Anatoly Karpov is one of the greatest chess players in history. He was the official world champion from 1975 to 1985, when he was defeated by Garry Kasparov. Although he later failed to defeat Kasparov in a direct match, he became world champion again after Kasparov left the International Chess Federation (FIDE) in 1993. He held the title until 1999, when he resigned as form of protest against the new rules of the FIDE World Championship. For 25 years Karpov was either the first or the second best player in the world. The world title matches between Karpov and Kasparov are considered some of the most beautiful and controversial in history. In addition to authoritatively dominating the world top for decades, the differences between their playing styles have generated some fantastic games.

Karpov’s games are a pure representation of the positional game. His seemingly simple and seemingly harmless moves always hid elaborate game plans. His opponents said that when they realized what Karpov’s plan was, it was too late. Karpov dominated his opponent from a distance, through a series of maneuvers, often on the first / last line. Neil Mcdonald said about Karpov that he made small moves in his own half board and suddenly his opponent’s position collapsed. As a style of play, Kasparov was at the opposite pole, his style of play being similar to the way a tornado takes over an ocean region. With a fantastic dynamic sense, he managed to develop relentless attacks with extraordinary speed. Today’s article illustrates a victory for Karpov in the company of Kasparov. The simple moves with which Karpov manages to strangle his opponent is remarkable. I invite you to put yourself in Karpov’s shoes and try to find the best move in 13 important moments.

Bibliography: Chess Secrets: The Giants of Strategy by Neil McDonald.

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