Thursday, August 29, 2013

Pestaño: The worst showing in a tournament

Thursday, August 29, 2013

A FEW columns ago I wrote about the “Best performances of all time” and got a compliment via e-mail from an extraordinary man whom I have admired for a long time.
Frederic Freidel co-founded Chessbase, the data base company that produces and markets the Fritz family of chess engines. It also operates a server for online chess-
Frederic has been in close contact with many of the world’s top chess players, including Kasparov, Anand, Kramnik, Carlsen, Leko, Topalov, Svidler, Short, the Polgar sisters and many others. Today, he spends most of his time editing the successful and the articles are remarkable and highly informative.
Today’s article are those players at the bottom of the barrel. These anecdotes are from the popular book “The complete chess addict” by Mike Fox and Richard James.
There is a story that Alekhine was watching two players playing in a café with only kings left on the board. After a while, one of them was jubilant, the other miserable who said “Draw?” The other said “No. I got my king to the 8th rank and made it a
Another story told by the author of the book was, about the time when after playing for about 10 minutes ,he was jolted by a query from his opponent “Excuse me sir,
which is the queen?”
Colonel Charles Moreau was a French soldier serving in the artillery and an officer of the French Legion of honor. He achieved the worst result ever recorded in an international chess tournament by losing all his 26 games in the 1903 Monte Carlo tournament. It is unclear why a weak player was able to play in an international tournament.
Another incidental player and a beginner at chess, Geoffrey Hosking, once defeated a Russian candidate master who was drunk. Because of this, he got an invitation to play in a tournament in Baku and was slaughtered by a dozen international masters.
One of the strongest claimant for the all-time grandpatzer title is George Hatfeild Dingley Gossip (last at Breslau 1889, London 1889, Manchester 1890, London 1892, and New York 1893).
J.T.S.Burke has the dubious distinction of having the most last place finishes of any professional player in the 19th-20th century.
A player who lost all 13 of his games by exceeding the time limit was Friedrich
Samisch in the Linkoping 1969 tournament.
Other players who laid duck eggs were James McCord 0/17 US Open 1944, Herbert Trenchard 0/27 in Vienna 1898 and Nicholas Menelaus Macleod 0/31 in a New York tournament in 1889. Surprisingly he was a good player considering that he was Minnesota Champion in 1899 and won the second Western Chess Association Tournament later called the US Open at Excelsior 1901.
At the 1947 Zonal tournament in Hilversum Bartholomew O’Sullivan manage 12 eggs. A solitary draw spoiled his bid for perfection. Harry Golomek wrote “O’Sullivan’s play was rather worse than his score.”
World Cup 2013. The World Cup currently played at Tromso, Norway is now in the final and last round from an original cast of 128 top players in the world. Playing for the championship are Vladimir Kramnik and Dmitry Andreikin, both Russians.
Kramnik won over Maxime Vacier-Lagrave of France, while Andreikin prevailed over the surprise semifinalist Evgeny Tomashevsky will now play best-of-fou r games.
Cepca. We will elect the new set of officers for 2014-15 on Sept. 15 Sunday at Handuraw Pizza in Gorordo. The monthly tournament will follow and attendance is compulsory.
Our Club will be 23 years old next month and we will celebrate it with an Open tournament. Details, venue and prizes will be announced later. Early sponsors are Handuraw Pizza, an old friend, Jerry Maratas and Eli Berciles.

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