Sunday, September 27, 2009

Trap. Dominate. F**k!

Over the past week we saw the two great K's reprise their rivalry in Valencia with the much younger Kasparov showing that he still "got game". Kasparov, a wannabe politician, won the match 9-3 overall.

Perhaps out of consideration for their busy schedules and advancing age, the two combatants were spared the long slog of a classical match-up. The games were at rapid and blitz time controls. This provoked Englishman IM Malcolm Pein to observe, "It is a little bit like one day cricket gaining pre-eminence over Test cricket,” and further quoted by the Tele as saying, "As a little bit of a traditionalist I am just a little concerned with losing the purity of the slow game where you get the highest level of chess."

That, however, is not our quote of the past week. Well, it's a sort of old quote but I only found it today!

Courtesy of Bill Prince, writing in of all places, I stumbled upon a gem by GM Nigel Short:

Finally, on the radio this morning, I heard a fascinating discussion about speed chess, and in particular, the difference between "blitz chess" and "bullet chess". Apparently, the former requires all moves to be made within 10 minutes, the latter in one. Not surprisingly one of the fine minds being interviewed on the subject found bullet chess "rather stressful".

Anyway, it reminded me of a brilliant piece Julian Barnes once wrote about the young British chess tyro Nigel Short, who, when asked to explain his methodology, refrained from the expected liturgy of chess-speak, to describe it thus: "Trap. Dominate. F---"

Again, genius.

Genius, indeed. Nigel Short, too, shows that, like his erstwhile Russian rival Kasparov, he still got game. The Englishman beat Ukrainian Zahar Efimenko, 3.5-2.5, in their match that took place last week.

UPDATE: An anonymous poster tells us that the correct quote may, in fact, be "DTF, standing for Dominate, Trap, F--- (in that order)".

1 comment:

ejh said...

Nigel Short is about as classic an example as comes to mind of someone whose personal development was arrested before their adolescence was complete.