Friday, August 15, 2014

Not My Game

Chess Olympiads are held once every two years. It's a great big tournament where most of the countries in the world send teams to compete. The latest one, which took place in Tromso, Norway, this time, had over 3,000 participants, men and women. China won the men's competition; Russia won the women's. But that's not the big news. Although it was big news in China, their first gold medal ever in chess. Russia and before that the Soviet Union has won both divisions many times.

The big news this time is that two players died during the tournament. One of them, Kurt Meier, a 67-year-old player from the tiny Pacific nation Seychelles, died at the board during play. (I wonder if his opponent thought: "I knew I had a good position, but I didn't know it was that good.") The other, from Uzbekistan, was found dead in this room.

This the first time anything like this has ever happened at the Olympiad. But it's interesting to note that death is delivered at the chessboard in the natural course of events, if the game isn't drawn. The object of the game is to destroy your opponent, after all.   (source)
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