Monday, November 12, 2012

The old guy can still bring it

I love the fact that Anatoly Karpov won the Anatoly Karpov chess tournament!

As The New York Times notes in Former World Champion Wins Namesake Event, Karpov has had an astonishingly long career:

Karpov, 61, of Russia, became world champion in 1975, succeeding Bobby Fischer, who was feuding with the World Chess Federation and refused to defend the title. Karpov quickly proved that he was a worthy champion, and he successfully defended the title in 1978 and 1981 in matches against Viktor Korchnoi, a Russian who defected from the Soviet Union in the 1970s. It was a period in which Karpov dominated the chess world.

Karpov became world champion when I was 14 years old. Although Bobby Fischer was of course my idol when I was just learning chess, I remember being fascinated by Karpov's cool and crisp precision. Fischer's games were ravaging annihilation, with attacks, sacrifices, pieces en prise everywhere; Karpov's were clinical devastation: simple, accurate, flawless.

Let's hear it for the old guy!

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