In an embarrassing backdown, the World Chess Federation, FIDE, has admitted
that its planned drug-testing at next month's Chess Olympiad in Istanbul
will be conducted for publicity purposes only.
Tacitly accepting that it currently has little idea which drugs might be
performance enhancing for chessplayers, FIDE issued a press release this
week stating that the tests in Istanbul would result in no players being
named or sanctioned no matter what substances were found in their urine.
(Blood tests have already been ruled out.)
In order to make the imposition of drug tests more palatable to a deeply
sceptical chess community, FIDE made a point of stating that they will not
be testing for alcohol and cannabis since it has already been decided that
these substances would detract from, rather than enhance, chess
Hinting that caffeine will eventually be on the banned list, FIDE has
warned that more than five cups of brewed coffee before or during a game
could put a player in the danger zone.
FIDE's preoccupation with drug testing is part of their campaign to make
chess an Olympic medal sport. The campaign itself may have minimal chances
for success but by working to introduce drug testing, FIDE can at least be
seen to be doing something. The fact that this campaign might soon turn a
coffee loving player into a drug cheat seems irrelevant.
In his last tournament prior to visiting to Australia, Viswanathan Anand is
cruising to victory at the World Cup in China; the following game helping
him move into the semi-finals.
Opening: Sicilian Defence
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e6 7.0-0 Be7 8.f4 0-0
9.Kh1 Qc7 10.a4 Nc6 11.Be3 Re8 12.Bf3 Rb8 13.Qd2 Bd7 14.Nb3 b6
So far following a line played to exhaustion by Karpov and Kasparov in the
1980s. Now Ivanchuk tries for a quick break but would have done better to
15.Rae1!? Bc8 16.e5?! dxe5 17.Bxc6 Qxc6 18.fxe5 Nd5 19.Qf2 Rf8 20.Nxd5 Qxd5
Now Black's bishops take control and White's extra pawn is worthless.
22.Bc5 (Diagram) 22...Bh4! 23.Qe2 Rfc8 24.Rd1 Qe4 25.Qxe4 Bxe4 26.Bd6 Bxc2
27.Bxb8 Bxd1 28.Rxd1 Rxb8 29.Na5?
29.Nc5 was a better chance, although the advanced e pawn remains a
29...Rxb2 30.g3 Be7 31.Nc6 Bf8 32.Rd8 g5! 33.h4
Ivanchuk had probably intended 33.Ra8 but after 33...g4! 34.Rxa6 Bc5 sets
up a mating net.
33...gxh4 34.gxh4 Rc2 35.Nb8 Kg7 36.Rd4 a5 37.Nd7 h5 38.Nxf8 Kxf8 39.Rd8+
** Accepting that correspondence chess must adapt to modern times, the
Correspondence Chess League of Australia is conducting the first Australian
Email Chess Championship which will begin in November. Entrants will be
placed in mini-tournaments of 11 players, topped by a Championship
division. Details BobMather@bigpond.com.au
Logan U/1600 Tournament
Leading final scores:
3eq.M.Wakamatsu, S.Syojic 5.
The Griffin Trophy tournament begins at the Canberra Chess Club, Griffin
Centre, Civic, on 13 September. Details Ian Rout 62766379.