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8 March 2018

Enlightenment for Candidates

Vladimir Barsky’s report from V. Dvorkovich commemoration meeting  

On Sunday, March 4, a soiree in memory of Vladimir Dvorkovich (30.12.1937-29.06.2005), an authoritative international arbiter, journalist, and a very erudite person, took place in Moscow. Vladimir Dvorkovich’s friends and colleagues, his relatives – wife Galina Lvovna, sons Arkady and Mikhail, grandsons - gathered in the Chess Parlour which bears his name. Participants of Tal Memorial, the 12th world chess champion Anatoly Karpov, editor-in-chief of Echo of Moscow radio station Alexei Venediktov and other well-known persons came as well.

The event was opened by the Parlour’s host Galina Lvovna Dvorkovich, who described Vladimir Yakovlevich as an attentive family man and told how happy and worried he had been about his relatives. At the same time, he had devotedly loved chess and had been very responsible when doing his work.

Anatoly Karpov recalled that he had met Dvorkovich almost 60 years ago: «In a remote 1961, I had a debut in the Russian youth championship in Borovichi, Novgorod Oblast. Dvorkovich worked there as an executive secretary. By that time, I had achieved first class in a city championship of Zlatoust, but they hadn’t time to write out a qualification certificate for me. That’s why I, as far as I remember, was the only second-class player in Borovichi. Nevertheless, I managed to repeat the norm of the first class and that was officially certified by Vladimir Yakovlevich himself. At that time, he lived and worked in Taganrog and moved to Moscow only several years later. After it our ways often intersected in many tournaments where I was participating…»

Recollections interspersed with musical performances. The 6-year-old Elisey Mysin played quite difficult pieces of music: at first, he was playing standing on his feet because it was more comfortable for him to reach the keys this way, but then he dived under the piano to settle a special support for his feet. Involuntarily I recalled a famous photo which portrays Jose Raul Capablanca playing chess with his father.

The 11-year-old Sofya Tyurina was brilliantly playing a saxophone. The pianist Alexander Malofeev is a real star in his 15 years old; it is quite a difficult task to get tickets to his concerts. According to Mark Glukhovksy, who was hosting the evening together with Arkady Dvorkovich, Malofeev is a super grandmaster of 2700-2750 in music.

Vishy Anand said that he had met Vladimir Dvorkovich during one of the super tournaments in Linares in the middle of 1990s. «Right now I was thumbing one of the issues of “64 – Chess Review” magazine, which are laying here on chairs, and I stumbled across an old photo which depicts Vladimir Dvorkovich, Alexander Roshal, and Garry Kasparov. And I was carried away there in my thoughts… I hadn’t communicated much with Dvorkovich because of the language barrier, but it had been obvious that he had been enjoying the atmosphere of great chess competitions, it had been very akin and dear to him».

Vladimir Kramnik: «It was very interesting for me to communicate with Vladimir Yakovlevich; he went into details. I remember how we were discussing some nuances of the rules of chess for an hour. He was one of the most competent organizers I know. He could hold an event of any level almost alone, but when it became necessary he could assemble a team, in which he was working as both an outstanding conductor, and an excellent performer – depending on the situation. He was constantly perfecting rules and regulations being a member of several FIDE Commissions and was by right considered to be the major statistician of chess in the USSR and Russia. No doubt, the merits and contribution of Vladimir Dvorkovich (who was one of the most erudite chess arbiters) were recognized when he was elected Chairperson of the RCF Arbiters Association».

Mikhail Dvorkovich read out his poem with a simple name “To Dad”.   

At Arkady Dvorkovich’s offer, three world champions – Anatoly Karpov, Vishy Anand, and Vladimir Kramnik – played a majority game against three young grandmasters – Sergey Karjakin, Ian Nepomniachtchi, and Daniil Dubov. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov became a demonstrator. The chess players made moves one by one without consulting each other. At the beginning, the young players outwitted their elder comrades and won a piece, but then they were let down by their own desire not just to win, but to win spectacularly. As a result, they miscalculated in a long forced line, the champions won back a piece and got two extra pawns which they converted with success.

Mark Glukhovsky offered some tests of knowledge of the rules of chess to the guests. For example, this one.  


White has just taken a pawn on c7, but his flag fell. What result should an arbiter declare?

Vladimir Kramnik would give victory to White, Sergey Shipov – to Black, but the right answer came from Evgenij Miroshnicneko: it’s a draw. White cannot win because he lost on time, Black cannot win because there is no legal continuation which would lead to his win (it is easy to see that the black king is mated after a double take on c7).

With a help of IA Alexey Moskvin, the chess players discussed and analyzed a recent incident between Carlsen and Inarkiev and remembered a famous “knights’ dance” from the game Socko-Foisor. In general, they have properly repeated chess rules, and it was not unnecessary before the Candidates Tournament, in which four participants of Tal Memorial will take part: Vladimir Kramnik, Sergey Karjakin, Alexander Grischuk, and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov. A highly experienced Anatoly Avraamovich Bykhovsky suggested to hold contests on knowledge of the rules of chess where the winners would be given the prizes named after V. Dvorkovich. 

It is a please to realize that the relatives of Vladimir Dvorkovich continue the work to which he had dedicated his whole life. A children’s chess school is functioning in the V. Dvorkovich Parlour, chess and musical festive events are being held on the regular basis, many international competitions have been organized here as well: Dvorkovich Cup, Nutcracker, handicap tournaments... Tal Memorial has become a traditional super tournament and has attracted world chess stars. As Arkady Dvorkovich assured us, the work on chess propaganda will go on without fail.

So be it!

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