Raymond Keene rss

Raymond Keene is The Spectator’s chess columnist.

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Stormy Petroff

1 August 2015

Alexander Petroff (1794-1867) is often remembered as the first great Russian chess master. He became the strongest player in Russia at the age of 15 and produced the first chess… Read more

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No. 372

1 August 2015

White to play. This position is from Howell-Sokolov, Staunton Memorial 2009. How can White finish off his attack with a fine flourish? Answers to me at The Spectator by Tuesday… Read more

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Arachnid

25 July 2015

Sadly, Michael Adams, for many years Britain’s leading grandmaster, will not be playing in the British Championship, which starts next week. Michael is often referred to as ‘Spidey’ because of… Read more

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No. 371

25 July 2015

Black to play. This is from Williams-Hawkins, -British Championship 2014. How can Black finish off his attack with a fine flourish? Answers to me at The Spectator by Tuesday 28… Read more

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Fabulous Fabiano

18 July 2015

Fabiano Caruana notched the result of his life at the Sinquefield Trophy in St Louis last year. Since then he has done nothing in particular and not done it very… Read more

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No. 370

18 July 2015

Black to play. This position is a variation from Kramnik-Naiditsch, Dortmund 2015. How can Black make a decisive material gain? Answers to me at The Spectator by Tuesday 21 July… Read more

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Chinese cracker

11 July 2015

I have a particular affection for Chinese involvement in mind sports. In 1981 I was invited as the first western grandmaster to compete in an international chess tournament in China,… Read more

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No. 370

11 July 2015

Black to play. This position is a variation from Hou Yifan-Kramnik, Dortmund 2015. Black is a rook down. What does he have in mind? Answers to me at The Spectator… Read more

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Magnus toppled

4 July 2015

Last week, world champion Magnus Carlsen suffered a devastating defeat in the first round of the Stavanger super tournament when he lost on time to Topalov, in what had been… Read more

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No. 369

4 July 2015

White to play. This is from Anand–Hammer, Stavanger 2015. White is a pawn up with a good position and his next move put the game beyond all doubt. How did… Read more

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Tempus fugit

27 June 2015

In serious competitive chess the play is regulated by time limits for completion of the moves. In the mid-19th century, players could take as long as they wished over their… Read more

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No. 368

27 June 2015

White to play. This position is from Vachier-Lagrave-Caruana, Norway Blitz 2015. How did White finish off at once? Answers to me at The Spectator by Tuesday 30 June or via… Read more

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Dark lord

20 June 2015

A new book, Opening Repertoire: The Nimzo-Indian and Bogo-Indian by Christof Seilecki (Everyman Chess), focuses on the ever popular Nimzo-Indian and Bogo-Indian Defences. The former arises after 1 d4 Nf6… Read more

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No. 367

20 June 2015

Black to play. This is from Spassky-Fischer, World Championship, Reykjavik (Game 5) 1972. This is probably the most famous ‘dark-square’ Nimzo-Indian game of all-time. How did Fischer finish off? Answers… Read more

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Triple tie

13 June 2015

This week I conclude my coverage of the Fidé (World Chess Federation) Grand Prix which finished last month in Khanty-Mansiysk. Three shared first place: Dmitri Jakovenko, Fabiano Caruana and Hikaru… Read more

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No. 366

13 June 2015

Black to play. This is from Rodriguez-Xiong, California 2012. How does Black finish off? Answers to me at The Spectator by Tuesday 16 June or via email to victoria@spectator.co.uk or… Read more

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Boris Good Enough

6 June 2015

Boris Gulko, celebrated both as a grandmaster and a former Soviet dissident, has recently completed his great trilogy of instructional volumes. They make exclusive use of the instructional value of… Read more

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No. 365

6 June 2015

Black to play. This is from Caruana-Jakovenko, Khanty-Mansiysk 2015. Black is winning -easily, but can you find the most accurate continuation, which forces mate in six moves at the most?… Read more

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Shuffleduck

30 May 2015

There are some odd opening moves in chess, such as 1 a3 and 1 g4. The former was used by Adolf Anderssen to win a game against Paul Morphy in… Read more

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No. 364

30 May 2015

Black to play. This is from Westman-Walther, Havana 1966. Black has the possibility of a discovered check against the white king. How can he make the most of this? Answers… Read more

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Reichenbach falls

23 May 2015

The former world champion Vladimir Kramnik recently espoused an opening system which I elaborated in a tournament in Germany in 1975. Remarkably, in the first two rounds of the Mannheim competition,… Read more

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Puzzle no. 363

23 May 2015

White to play. This is from Kramnik-Svidler, Russian Team Championship, Sochi 2015. The black pieces are in a tangle and vulnerable to tactical strikes. How did Kramnik now launch just… Read more

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Hypnotism

16 May 2015

During the World Championship qualifier of 1959, grandmaster Pal Benko wore dark glasses to counter the hypnotic gaze of his dangerous opponent, world champion-to-be Mikhail Tal. This precaution did him… Read more

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No. 362

16 May 2015

White to play. This position is from Tal–Benko, Candidates 1959. Black has just advanced with … e5, attacking the white knight. What has he overlooked? Answers to me at The Spectator… Read more

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Brain games

9 May 2015

This week I continue with my analysis of Nigel Short’s recent animadversions upon the differences between the male and female brain and his opinion that women cannot match up to… Read more