Gary Kimovich Kasporov, hailing from Russia is one of the greatest players of our time. The more you read about him, his achievements, and his games, the more you will be inspired. Born in 1963, the 55-year-old chess wizard is also known for being a writer and political activist. But give him a chessboard and he would show you what he does best – take down opponents without bloodshed.
He was just six years old when he had a spark for chess. He always took his games seriously and trained under the reputed coach Vladimir Makogonov. It all started from there. A journey into the world of chess that would go on to rewrite some conventions, records, rankings and moves – a journey that the world would remember for his games and a journey that would inspire millions of other chess players from around the world in the times to come.
The journey called Gary Kasporov. This post is a humble dedication and a commemoration of all his achievements that got etched in the history of time.
Gary is 12 years old. Having adopted his mother’s name, he wins the Soviet Junior Championship. In 1977, he does it again.
Gary goes on to win 64-player Swiss style tournament held at Daugavplis.
While others in his age were busy following conventions, Gary pursued his interest for chess and became the World Junior Champion at the age of 16. In less than a year, he became a grandmaster.
Gary Kasporov faces a bona-fide prodigy named Nigel Short, who was just 14 and became a British champion. Gary secured a score of 121/2 for Nigel’s 71/2 and became PCA chess champion.
The year witnessed a technical showdown that was nothing less than a clash of the titans. In the year, the Russian mastermind had to face his Indian counterpart named Vishwanathan Anand. Considered a prodigy as well, Anand became India’s national champion when he was just 16. The venue was chosen to the Observation Deck of the World Trade Center. Instead of 24 games, the match was restricted to 20 with no adjournments or timeouts. The first 8 games ended in draw until Anand took a lead by winning the 9th game. However, Gary was quick in his rebound and he went on to win four out of the next five games. Gary retained his PCA title.
After having faced the best of human minds, perhaps, Gary required a different class of opponents. Probably the smartest of the systems! That is why the year 1996 would go down in history as one of the crucial years for chess and chess enthusiasts. Gary faced what was called Deep Blue – IBM’s supercomputer. The first match was played in Philadelphia, where he lost one game, drew two and won three. However, a rematch was scheduled for the following year when Gary lost.
The millennial year witnessed Gary facing a Russian opponent named Vladimir Krammnik, who was chosen after Anand refused to play against Gary. 16 games were scheduled for a showdown and Gary would retain his title in case of a tie. However, Krammnik surpassed Gary’s expectations, when he quickly won 2 games and followed them up with 7 draws. He then won a game and after 15 games were done with, Kasporov’s era as the World Chess Champion had come to an end. The mantle was passed on to Vladimir Krammnik.
Gary’s life and games are full of inspiration for beginners and enthusiasts. To know more about his achievements and matches, you can check out this official link here.