Garry Kasparov

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Garry Kasparov : biography

13 April 1963 –

Early career

Kasparov was born Garik Kimovich Weinstein (Russian: Гарик Вайнштейн) in Baku, Soviet Union (now Azerbaijan). His father, Kim Moiseyevich Weinstein, was Russian Jewish, and his mother, Klara Shagenovna, was Armenian.: "I am absolutely sure that the Garry Kasparov, who became leader of the chess world, professed the same values as Garik Weinstein, who once, following the example of his father, became fascinated by chess…" on Kasparov.ru site White King and Red Queen by Daniel Johnson, ISBN 1-84354-609-4 Kasparov has described himself as a "self-appointed Christian", although "very indifferent".http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,301057,00.html

Kasparov first began the serious study of chess after he came across a chess problem set up by his parents and proposed a solution.Unlimited Challenge, an autobiography by Garry Kasparov with Donald Trelford, ISBN 0-00-637358-5 His father died of leukemia when he was seven years old., by Anne Kressler, From Azerbaijan International (3.3) Autumn 1995. (Retrieved 31 March 2008) At the age of twelve, he adopted his mother’s Armenian surname, Gasparyan, modifying it to a more Russified version, Kasparov.

From age 7, Kasparov attended the Young Pioneer Palace in Baku and, at 10 began training at Mikhail Botvinnik’s chess school under noted coach Vladimir Makogonov. Makogonov helped develop Kasparov’s positional skills and taught him to play the Caro-Kann Defence and the Tartakower System of the Queen’s Gambit Declined. Kasparov won the Soviet Junior Championship in Tbilisi in 1976, scoring 7 points of 9, at age 13. He repeated the feat the following year, winning with a score of 8½ of 9. He was being trained by Alexander Shakarov during this time.

In 1978, Kasparov participated in the Sokolsky Memorial tournament in Minsk. He had been invited as an exception but took first place and became a chess master. Kasparov has repeatedly said that this event was a turning point in his life, and that it convinced him to choose chess as his career. "I will remember the Sokolsky Memorial as long as I live", he wrote. He has also said that after the victory, he thought he had a very good shot at the World Championship.

He first qualified for the Soviet Chess Championship at age 15 in 1978, the youngest ever player at that level. He won the 64-player Swiss system tournament at Daugavpils over tiebreak from Igor V. Ivanov, to capture the sole qualifying place.

Kasparov rose quickly through the FIDE (World Chess Federation) rankings. Starting with an oversight by the Russian Chess Federation, he participated in a grandmaster tournament in Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina (then part of Yugoslavia), in 1979 while still unrated (he was a replacement for Viktor Korchnoi who was originally invited but withdrew due to threat of boycott from the Soviet). He won this high-class tournament, emerging with a provisional rating of 2595, enough to catapult him to the top group of chess players (at the time, number 15 in the World). The next year, 1980, he won the World Junior Chess Championship in Dortmund, West Germany. Later that year, he made his debut as second reserve for the Soviet Union at the Chess Olympiad at Valletta, Malta, and became a Grandmaster.

Losing the title and aftermath

The Kasparov-Kramnik match took place in London during the latter half of 2000. Kramnik had been a student of Kasparov’s at the famous Botvinnik/Kasparov chess school in Russia, and had served on Kasparov’s team for the 1995 match against Viswanathan Anand.

After losing the title, Kasparov won a series of major tournaments, and remained the top rated player in the world, ahead of both Kramnik and the FIDE World Champions. In 2001 he refused an invitation to the 2002 Dortmund Candidates Tournament for the Classical title, claiming his results had earned him a rematch with Kramnik.

Kasparov and Karpov played a four game match with rapid time controls over two days in December 2002 in New York City. Karpov surprised the experts and emerged victoriously, winning two games and drawing one., ChessBase News, 21 December 2002