Traps, Tricks & Mistakes: Snake Charmer

Garry Kimovich Kasparov is a retired chess grandmaster, former World Chess Champion who has successfully played the World Chess Championship on six occasions. From 1986 until his retirement in 2005, he was the highest-ranked in the world for 225 out of 228 months. Kasparov was a brilliant tactician and deployed a dynamic playing style.

Anatoly Yevgenyevich Karpov is a retired Russian chess GM. He was the official world champion from 1975 to 1985 when he was defeated by Garry Kasparov. His chess performance includes first-place in 160 tournaments. He had a peak ELO rating of 2780 and he stayed a total of 102 months at world number one. Karpov’s style of play was solidly positional and took minimal risks. Because of that, chess experts referred to it as a “boa constrictor” style.

Today’s game corresponds to their World Chess Match played in Seville, 1985.

The game began with the tricky Grunfeld Defense and is worth studying and seeing how different was the playing style of these two great players. Kasparov deploys a creative play blocking Karpov’s pawns with his queen in the centre and creates permanent threats. Karpov, on his side, avoids the traps following strategical considerations.

Karpov and Kasparov were strong chess rivals. They played a total of 5 matches in 7 years which counts for 144 games.

This game resembles the work of a snake charmer (Kasparov) trying to conduct a boa (Karpov) into a cage. Unfortunately for Kasparov, in this case, the snake escaped.

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