The Right Coast

March 16, 2005
By Tom Smith

I got this email from a student of mine and chess enthusiast:

I noticed you linked to a story about Garry Kasparov on your blog. He made
his announcement after the super grandmaster Linares tournament which I had
been following from game 1. He played incredible for the entire 2 week
tournament and the entire chess world went from ecstatic at seeing the old
Kasparov to flabergasted at hearing his announcement. Though I'm deeply
saddened that the best chess player that has ever lived has retired in his
prime, I think the sacrifice he is making (no pun intended) is downright
heroic. He has definitely opened my eyes to the brewing problems in Russia.
The reason I bring this up is that I wasn't sure if you've had a chance to
review any of his games from Linares. At the following link you can find
his tournament winning victory over the #1 player from England, Michael
Adams. Kasparov's win is spectacular. I don't think you can fully appreciate the drama of his
announcement until you see the incredible level of chess he was playing just
prior. Even though I know he doesn't see things this way, I have a sense
that Kasparov has martyred his career for a cause that is deeply American.
I feel an incredible sense of solidarity with him. Anyway, enough of my
blathering on, enjoy the game!