Chess in America has typically been the reserve of the geeky eccentric, or the rich and effete. But in many parts of Africa, where the game is seen as a powerful tool for intellectual strength and self-improvement, it has developed a broad following. And because chess is so cheap, it is luring players who are just as likely to come from a rural village in Botswana or a South African township as from a European boarding school. Now two homegrown stars—Simutowe and Zimbabwean Robert Gwaze, who won the African Individual Championships last month and is heading toward becoming a grandmaster—are leading the way for other African players to break into the ranks of the world's best.
Sunday, October 07, 2007
African Chess Ambitions
From Newsweek: Dreaming of Checkmate. A good article on the advance of chess in the African continent. There's also a top quote in the article by the Malawian player, Alfred Chimathere.