26 April 2018

April Yahoos

The seventh straight month of chess in the mainstream press echoed two stories from the two previous months. Two months ago we had February Yahoos:-

Most powerful man in chess accused of 'secretly funding ISIS' (yahoo.com; nypost.com)

And last month we had March Yahoos:-

US chess grandmaster Caruana wins shot at world title match (yahoo.com; Associated Press)

This month's headlines are shown in the following composite of two snippets from the Yahoo news feed.

2018-04-02: Fabiano Caruana is poised to do what no American has done since Bobby Fischer. Here's the path he took to get there (yahoo.com). The Yahoo story was just a stub leading to the real story (with the same title) by Daaim Shabazz, Fabiano Caruana is poised to do... (sfgate.com)

Whenever a glimmer of chess talent is spotted in the United States, people often ask: "Is this the next Bobby Fischer?" In the early 2000s, a diminutive, bespectacled young boy -- who by age 9 was already battling seasoned competitors in top-level sections -- had his name added to the roster of Fischer aspirants. His name is Fabiano Caruana. Fabiano, now 25, has finally earned the right to challenge reigning chess champion Magnus Carlsen for the world championship crown this November in London. On March 27, he won the 2018 Candidates Tournament in thrilling fashion

The story is not your typical account of the formative years of a young chess player. (Although it does that, too.) Its focus is more that 'His evolution makes a good case study for homeschooling and other ways of learning that enable young people to break free from the static environment of formal education in order to pursue their passions.' It turns out that the Sfgate.com story is itself a reprint of Fabiano Caruana is poised to do... (theconversation.com). The copy of the article on that site ('Academic rigour, journalistic flair') has other stories about chess -- 'You might also like' -- that seem to be be worth exploring.

2018-04-09: Russian under US sanctions refuses to resign as world chess head (yahoo.com; The Telegraph)

The eccentric Russian president of the world chess federation will not step down despite calls from his colleagues, who say the US sanctions against him have cut the organisation off from financing. Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, a multimillionaire ally of Vladimir Putin who has visited dictators like Bashar al-Assad and claims to have once been abducted by aliens, told The Telegraph he would not resign and would in fact seek re-election in October's vote. He has been in office since 1995.

Both the Carlsen vs. Caruana match and the FIDE vs. Ilyumzhinov turmoil will continue as evolving stories over the next few months. Will April Yahoos bring May Wahoos? [What else rhymes with 'Yahoos'?]

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