Guyana’s participation at the important 2014 Norway Chess Olympiad, scheduled for the beginning of August, represents a milestone for the sprinkling of local practitioners of the ancient game. The Olympiad promises to be an exciting affair as it is every chess player’s dream to attend the fabled and inspiring tournament. Carlsen and Anand will be there, Carlsen on top board for Norway, and Anand on top board for India. Kasparov and Karpov will be there, and so will be other accomplished grandmasters. At a modest count, some three to four hundred journalists will be reporting on the event.
In addition to play and the reportage on the games, there is also the anticipated FIDE Congress, during which elections will be held to determine the next President of FIDE. The incumbent, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, will be opposing Garry Kasparov for the coveted job. Each country has a single vote, and therefore in this instance, Guyana becomes as modestly powerful as the economic behemoths. There has been much backroom discussion about the purchasing of votes, especially in relation to the economically impoverished nations. The international chess organization, FIDE, numbers 162 countries.
In Monday’s press release announcing the renewed participation of Guyana in the chess Olympiads, one notices the seemingly inexcusable exclusion from mention of Wendell Meusa as a player. Meusa is Guyana’s most prolific chess player, and each country fields its finest player on top board to solidify its pride.
But Meusa is venturing forth as a coach, and not as a player. Guyana never transported a chess coach to the two previous Olympiads which we attended in Argentina in 1978 and Malta in 1980 . The press release also named Yolander Persaud, an unknown local chess player, as a member of the Norway team. Some calls from curious enquiring minds in relation to the composition of the Norway team, and whether an elimination tournament was held to determine its make-up, caused this columnist to seek clarification from the President of the Guyana Chess Federation, Irshad Mohammed, who issued the press release. Mohammed fashioned his response promptly, which read in part :
“1. Meusa is still registered under the Barbados Chess Federation, so he can only represent Barbados. For him to represent Guyana, he has to be transferred from the Barbados Chess Federation and he has to be living in Guyana one year after the transfer has been completed.
“2. An elimination tournament was not held for Norway since we were unsure we would have gotten the funding for the players at short notice. We got funding and later learned we had to register the members of the team. So a committee selected the team based on various criteria: chess strength, consistency, among others.
“3. Ms Persaud is a spectator that is covering her own expenses.”
Guyana recorded its finest results at the 1978 Buenos Aires Olympiad, with a little over fifty per cent of the total number of points. This country topped the entire Caribbean! Maurice Broomes and his brother Gordon were deadly within the Caribbean nations. They played top and second boards for Guyana. Edan Warsali from LBI contributed a number of points to the Guyana total, as the first and second boards faced awesome competition from the world at large. But when Guyana opposed Belgium in the first round, Gordon Broomes took down a Belgian International Master by setting up a checkmate from which there was no escape. Then there was Patrick Wharton on fourth board, who also preferred draws when he could not win.
The Sunday Stabroek represents the only outlet for the publication of chess games. Therefore, I would wish that President Irshad Mohammed could make the Guyana games at the Olympiad available for publication in this newspaper during the tournament . Needless to say, the games would be replayed, certainly by our young people.
This will assuredly rouse the interest of Guyanese chess enthusiasts, and create recognition for the Norway participants. Finally, the publication of the games would create some needed artistic appreciation.
The following games were played at the recent 2014 Dortmund Sparkassen Chess Meeting which ends today.
Kramnik v Meier
White: V Kramnik
Black: Georg Meier
1. c4 c5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. g3 Nc6 4. Bg2 d5 5. O-O d4 6. a3 e5 7. d3 a5 8. e4 Be7 9. Ne1 h5 10. f4 h4 11. f5 hxg3 12. hxg3 g6 13. Nd2 gxf5 14. exf5 Rg8 15. Qf3 Bd7 16. Rf2 Qb6 17. Re2 O-O-O 18. Ne4 Qb3 19. Nf2 a4 20. Bh6 Bf8 21. Bxf8 Rdxf8 22. g4 Rg7 23. Ne4 Nxe4 24. Qxe4 Rfg8 25. Bf3 f6 26. Rg2 Nd8 27. Qe2 Bc6 28. Bxc6 bxc6 29. Qe4 Kc7 30. Nf3 Nf7 31. Rf1 Nd6 32. Qe2 Rxg4 33. Rff2 Nxf5 34. Nd2 Rxg2+ 35. Rxg2 Rxg2+ 36. Kxg2 Qxb2 37. Kf3 Nd6 38. Qh2 Qxa3 39. Ke2 Qb2 40. Qh7+ Kb6 41. Qe7 Nb7 0-1.
Caruana v Ponomariov
White: Fabiano Caruana
Black: Ruslan Ponomariov
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.Nc3 Nxc3 6.dxc3 Be7 7.Be3 Nc6 8.Qd2 Be6 9.O-O-O Qd7 10.Kb1 Bf6 11.h3 h6 12.b3 a6 13.g4 O-O-O 14.Bg2 g5 15.Nd4 Nxd4 16.cxd4 d5 17.f4 gxf4 18.Bxf4 h5 19.g5 Bg7 20.Rde1 h4 21.Be5 Rdg8 22.Qf4 Qd8 23.Bf1 Kb8 24.Bd3 Bc8 25.Kb2 Bxe5 26.Rxe5 Rg7 27.a4 a5 28.Ka2 Ka7 29.Qd2 Kb8 30.Qf4 Ka7 31.Rhe1 Bxh3 32.Rh1 Bc8 33.Rxh4 Rxh4 34.Qxh4 b6 35.Qh6 Rg8 36.Qc6 Be6 37.g6 Rg7 38.gxf7 Bxf7 39.Re7 Qxe7 40.Ba6 Kxa6 41.Qa8# 1-0.
Caruana v Meier
White: Fabiano Caruana
Black: Georg Meier
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.e5 Nfd7 5.f4 c5 6.Nf3 Nc6 7.Be3 cxd4 8.Nxd4 Bc5 9.Qd2 O-O 10.O-O-O a6 11.Qf2 Bxd4 1