25 April 2016

Karjakin's Early Games

My recent post, Karjakin's GM Title, linked to a 2002 Chessbase.com 'Interview with Sergey Karjakin'. I discovered afterwards that the same interview was included in TWIC 421 as 'Leontxo Garcia Interview With Sergey Karjakin (after the fourth round)'. Other than identifying the interviewer, which Chessbase neglected to do, I wouldn't mention this duplication, but the same issue of TWIC included a link to Sergey Karjakin games collection (chess-sector.odessa.ua).

Although the domain is long gone ('Server not found'), it survives in Archive.org. I downloaded a copy of the Karjakin collection (216 games), converted the CBV file to PGN, extracted the PGN headers, loaded them into a database, and produced the following summary of the file.

The 43 games from the year 2000 are more than are available on Chessgames.com. The Chess-sector site ('editor Mikhail Golubev') promises more material of historical interest. See, for example, a report on the '78th Hastings International Chess Congress (2002-2003)'.

I am very grateful to John Saunders, who is editor-in-chief of both the famous British Chess Magazine and the BCM Online website, for his personal permission to re-publish at chess-sector.odessa.ua the following text and photograph of Sergey Karyakin [sic].

The BCM article summarized a Sunday Telegraph interview with Karjakin by Nigel Farndale.

Karyakin's other interests included acrobatics. On being asked more about this, Karyakin said that he "liked walking on his hands". Farndale's suggestion that he do this to distract opponents between moves was greeted by boyish giggles. On his chess training, Sergey reveals that his father was very strict if he didn't train properly: "He would punish me with physical exercises such as push-ups and sit-ups". He now trains for six hours a day, with three hours spent at the computer and another three spent with his coach (GM Borovikov, playing in the Challengers). Does he go to school? "Only sometimes", confesses the young grandmaster from Kramatorsk. He travels to tournaments with his coach but not his parents. Regarding his manner, Farndale describes him as possessing considerable sangfroid and unnerving composure.

On top of the Karjakin material, there is much about GM Ponomariov, who was FIDE World Champion at the time.

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