Test Your Chess Knowledge No.330 – Bits & Pieces!

This is the last Daily Quiz Question and will be replaced by the Weekly Find The Plan Question on Saturday.

So, to celebrate all our publications during Lockdown …

To the nearest 50, up to today (7th June 2021), how many main Bulletins, extra Bulletins (when a bulletin has been split over a number of weeks), Puzzles, Daily Quiz Questions, Dorset Local Chats and Christmas Countdown Games have been posted on the Dorset Chess website since we started producing these extra bits of information in early April 2020 at the start of Lockdown?
A) 450
B) 500
C) 550
D) 600
E) 650

Answer: D

So far from the start of Lockdown up to 7th June 2021 there have been just over 600 publications, i.e.

⦁ 64 Bulletins (the same number as the number of squares on a chess board!).
⦁ 12 Extra Bulletins (as part of bulletins being split)
⦁ 165 Puzzles
⦁ 330 Daily Quiz Questions (the clue is in the question!).
⦁ 10 Dorset Local Chats
⦁ 24 Christmas Countdown Games.

All the Bulletins and Dorset Local Chats can be found here … https://www.dorsetchess.co.uk/bulletins-and-chat/

The first Puzzle can be found here … https://www.dorsetchess.co.uk/puzzle-game-of-the-day/

The 24 Christmas Countdown Games can be found here … https://www.dorsetchess.co.uk/advent/

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.329 – International Chess

Who was the last ex-World Chess Champion to pass away?
A) Vasily Smyslov (World Champion 1957-58)
B) Mikhail Tal (World Champion 1960-61)
C) Mikhail Botvinnik (World Champion 1948-57, 1958-60, 1961-63)
D) Tigran Petosian (World Champion 1963-69)
E) Bobby Fischer (World Champion 1972-75)

Answer: A

Smyslov was the last ex-World Chess Champion to pass away in 2010 at the grand old age of 89 and has lived the longest of all World Champions. Fischer passed away in 2008, Botvinnik in 1995, Tal in 1992 and Petrosian in 1984. Boris Spassky (World Chess Champion 1969-72) is still going strong and is currently 84.

The history of World Chess Champions can be found in Bulletin No.46 Part 1 and Part 2.

Photo by Jurgen Stigter
CC BY-SA 3.0

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.328 – National Chess

Who was the first English player to earn a Grandmaster norm (not the full Grandmaster title)?
A) Bill Hartston
B) Tony Miles
C) Michael Stean
D) John Nunn
E) Raymond Keene

Answer: E

Raymond Keene won the first norm in 1974 but he was pipped to the full Grandmaster title in 1976 by Tony Miles.

Photo by Rob Bogaerts / Anefo

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.327 – Local Chess

On the 1st May 2021, our Dorset Juniors took part in an inaugural Inter County Junior Chess Tournament but who was our top performing junior?
A) Jack
B) Jamie
C) Zander
D) Florence
E) Matthew

Answer: B

Jamie Doyle scored 33 points and came 8th out of the 60 players. Close to the halfway point he was leading the tournament.

To see all the individual results please click here … https://lichess.org/tournament/ZhmQxxcI

Jamie being presented the Dorset Junior Champion trophy in 2020

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.326 – Chess Laws / Trivia

When was the first website developed for playing online chess?
A) 1988
B) 1992
C) 1995
D) 1998
E) 2001

Answer: B

The first website designed for online chess was the Internet Chess Server, which started operation in 1992 and was free to use. It was gradually improved and then in 1995 it was rebranded the Internet Chess Club and launched as a commercial service.  You can read more about the history of this pioneering site here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Chess_Club.

Since then, a number of chess websites have been developed. These include Chess.com, lichess and chess24.com, which are the largest chess websites as of 2021.


Test Your Chess Knowledge No.325 – Bits & Pieces!

Where does the English Opening derive its name from?
A) It was played by the (unofficial) World Chess Champion Howard Staunton, who played it during his 1843 match with Saint- Amant and in London 1851, at the first international tournament.
B) By the mid-19th century, the centre of gravity for chess had shifted from Paris to London. The Game of Kings became the game for everyone. Its popularity was augmented by the creation of chess clubs, the distribution of introductory books, columns in the general press, and magazines dedicated to the game. The English opening was created from these magazines whilst London was the capital of chess.
C) It was named after the English started to play correspondence chess in the mid 19th century and were looking for different openings to P-K4 and P-Q4.
D) It was played by Johannes Hermann-Zukertort in the London 1883 tournament, one of the strongest at the time, which he won with 3 rounds to spare.
E) It did not have a proper name until the start of the 20th century when many strong English players took it up.

Answer: A

The English Opening did not inspire Staunton’s contemporaries and caught on only in the 20th century. It is now recognised as a solid opening that may be used to reach both classical and hypermodern positions.


Test Your Chess Knowledge No.324 – International Chess

With thanks to Graham White (Wimborne) for supplying the following question.

The most recent Chess Olympiad was held in Georgia in 2018. Which nation won?
A) India
B) Ukraine
C) China
D) United States
E) Russia

Answer: C

China won the gold medal in both the Open and Women’s event. This was the first time since 1986 that one country united the titles and China became the second nation to do so after the former Soviet Union. More details on this Olympiad can be found here on Wikipedia.

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.323 – National Chess

Who was the first English chess player to play in the Champions Chess Tour in April 2021?
A) Nigel Short
B) Mickey Adams
C) Luke McShane
D) David Howell
E) Gawain Jones

Answer: E

Jones scored 3 out of 15 and came 15th out of 16 in the preliminary round which shows how tough it is to play amongst the elite but he did manage to beat Wesley So. No prizes for guessing who won the tournament!

Photo by Stefan64 (wikimedia)
CC BY-SA 4.0

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.322 – Local Chess

On the 1st May 2021, our Dorset Juniors took part in an inaugural Inter County Junior Chess Tournament but how many Dorset Juniors took part?
A) 9
B) 11
C) 13
D) 15
E) 17

Answer: C

13 Dorset juniors took part.

With thanks to Jamie, Jack, Zander, Matthew, Leo, Florence, Harry, Oliver, Lohit, Max, Raphael, Jake & Emmeline for all their support.

To see how they all individually got on please click here … https://lichess.org/tournament/ZhmQxxcI


Test Your Chess Knowledge No.321 – Chess Laws / Trivia

Who is this past World Chess Champion?

Courtesy of Dutch National Archives

A) Alexander Alekhine
B) Max Euwe
C) Mikhail Botvinnik
D) Vasily Smyslov
E) Tigran Petrosian

Answer: D

Vasily Smyslov was a Soviet and Russian chess Grandmaster, and he was World Chess Champion from 1957 to 1958. He was also a Candidate for the World Chess Championship on eight occasions (1948, 1950, 1953, 1956, 1959, 1965, 1983, and 1985).

Here is some old footage of Smyslov winning the World Championship beating Botvinnik in 1957.

More details on Smyslov can be found in Bulletin No.46.


Test Your Chess Knowledge No.320 – Bits & Pieces!

Who was the first women to become a Grandmaster?
A) Pia Cramling
B) Nona Gaprindashvili
C) Susan Polgar
D) Judit Polgar
E) Maia Chiburdanidze

Answer: B

Nona Gaprindashvili (pictured below) was awarded the FIDE Grandmaster title in 1978, Maia Chiburdanidze was second to be awarded the title in 1984, Susan and Judit Polgar got theirs in 1991 and Pia Cramling in 1992.

Photo by Gerhard Hund
CC BY-SA 3.0

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.319 – International Chess

With thanks to Graham White (Wimborne) for supplying the following question.

Which Grandmaster has won the Russian Championship a record 8 times?
A) Nezhmetdinov
B) Korchnoi
C) Karpov
D) Kasparov
E) Svidler

Answer: E

Peter Svidler has won the Russian Championship in 1994 (when only 17 or 18), 1995, 1997, 2003, 2008, 2011, 2013 and 2017. He has represented Russia at the Chess Olympiad ten times (1994-2010, 2014) winning five team gold medals, two team silvers and an individual bronze.

Peter Svidler

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.318 – National Chess

The British Chess Federation was founded in 1904 but when did the English Federation become one of its localised successors?
A) 1990
B) 1995
C) 2000
D) 2005
E) 2010

Answer: D

The British Chess Federation (BCF) was the governing body of chess in England from 1904 until 2005. It had long been argued by some that the BCF should rename to reflect that only England came under its jurisdiction.

Full details can be found here …

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.317 – Local Chess

In the 2019/20 league season how many teams were playing in our local Bacchus Leagues?
A) 4
B) 5
C) 6
D) 7
E) 8

Answer: E

There were 5 teams in the Bacchus East League (Highcliffe, Poole Bishops, Poole Knights, Poole Rooks & Wimborne).

There were 3 teams in the Bournemouth East League (Highcliffe Castles, Ringwood Gambits & Southbourne Seagulls).

Unfortunately there were no teams in the Bacchus West League.

The interesting background to the formation of our Bacchus Leagues can be found here…

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.316 – Chess Laws / Trivia

Who is this past World Chess Champion?

A) Max Euwe
B) Alexander Alejhine
C) Mikhail Botvinnik
D) Vasily Smyslov
E) Tigran Petrosian

Answer: C

Mikhail Botvinnik was a Soviet chess player, who was the sixth official World Chess Champion from for the following years from 1948–1957, 1958–1960 and 1961–1963. He was the first world-class player to develop within the Soviet Union and played a major role in the organisation of chess. He also became a leading member of the coaching system that enabled the Soviet Union to dominate top-class chess during that time.

More details on Botvinnik can be found in Bulletin No.46

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.315 – Bits & Pieces!

Ossip Bernstein was a Russian-French chess player. He was one of the inaugural recipients of the title International Grandmaster from FIDE in 1950. However, earlier in his career he had a lucky escape. In 1918 he was sentenced to death by firing squad but what was the reason he was not executed?
A) He beat a commanding officer at chess.
B) He managed to bribe a top official.
C) The member of the firing squad with the live bullet missed and he was let free.
D) He was found not guilty for his ‘counter-revolutionary’ crimes at the last minute.
E) He escaped jail on a British ship to Paris.

Answer: A

In 1918, when he was 36 years old, Bernstein was arrested in the city of Odessa by the Bolshevik secret police whose purpose was to investigate and punish “counter-revolutionary” crimes. Bernstein was to be shot by a firing squad for serving as a legal advisor to the banking industry.⁣ On the day of his execution, Bernstein watched as the firing squad lined up before him.

At the last minute, a commanding officer asked to see the list of prisoner names and recognized Bernstein’s name as he was a chess enthusiast. After confronting Bernstein, the commanding officer offered him a deal he couldn’t refuse.⁣ They would play a game of chess to prove his identity. If Bernstein won the match, he would win his life and freedom. However, if he drew or lost, he would get shot along with the rest of the prisoners. Bernstein won in short order and was released. He then escaped on a British ship and settled in Paris but this was not the main reason why he was not executed. He lived to a grand old age of 80, passing away in 1962.

Courtesy of Dutch National Archive

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.314 – International Chess

With thanks to Graham White (Wimborne) for supplying the following question.

Gary Kasparov retired from professional chess after the Linares tournament in 2005. Who beat him in the last round?
A) Anand
B) Leko
C) Kramnik
D) Topalov
E) Adams

Answer: D

Kasparov beat himself in the last round, having missed clear drawing chances, but as that would be the impossible answer, it was Topalov who beat him. However, Kasparov did finish on a sort of high as, although both he and Topalov scored 8 points out of 12, he won Linares on tiebreak.

Photo by S.M.S.I., Inc. – Owen Williams, The Kasparov Agency
GNU Free Doc License, V 1.2

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.313 – National Chess

The British Chess Magazine is the World’s oldest chess magazine but when was it formed?
A) 1871
B) 1881
C) 1981
D) 1901
E) 1911

Answer: B

The British Chess Magazine is the world’s oldest chess journal in continuous publication. First published in January 1881, it has appeared at monthly intervals ever since. More details can be found here on wikipedia.

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.312 – Local Chess

On the 1st May 2021, our Dorset Juniors took part in an inaugural Inter County Junior Chess Tournament but which Counties took part?
A) Dorset, Berkshire, Hampshire & Wiltshire
B) Dorset, Berkshire, Hampshire & Devon
C) Dorset, Berkshire, Wiltshire & Devon
D) Dorset, Hampshire, Wiltshire & Devon
E) Dorset, Berkshire, Hampshire, Wiltshire & Devon

Answer: B

The tournament was great fun and at the half way stage, Dorset was in with a good chance of winning.

Full details can be found here.

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.311 – Chess Laws / Trivia

Who is this past World Chess Champion?

A) José Raúl Capablanca
B) Alexander Alekhine
C) Max Euwe
D) Mikhail Botvinnik
E) Mikhail Tal

Answer: A

José Raúl Capablanca was a Cuban chess player who was World Chess Champion from 1921 to 1927. A chess prodigy, he is widely renowned for his exceptional endgame skill and speed of play.

More details on Capablanca can be found in Bulletin No.46.

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.310 – Bits & Pieces!

In 1999 Kasparov took on ‘The World’ at chess but how many people took part?
A) Over 500 but no more than than 5,000
B) Over 5,000 but no more than 50,000
C) Over 50,000 but no more than 500,000
D) Over 500,000 but no more than 5,000,000
E) Over 5,000,000

Answer: C

Kasparov versus ‘The World’ was a game of chess played in 1999 over the internet. Conducting the White pieces, Garry Kasparov faced the rest of the world in consultation, with the World Team moves to be decided by plurality vote. Over 50,000 people from more than 75 countries participated in the game.

Kasparov won in 62 moves. You can see more details of the event and the game itself here on wiki.

Photo by S.M.S.I., Inc. – Owen Williams, The Kasparov Agency.
CC BY-SA 3.0

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.309 – International Chess

Why did Hou Yifan lose her final game in the 2017 Gibraltar Masters tournament?
A) She turned up late.
B) Her mobile phone went off during the game.
C) She resigned in protest when the arbiter took no action against her opponent who kept fidgeting with pieces and shaking the table.
D) After nearly 100 moves and in a winning position she blundered to a mate in 1.
E) She threw a game in protest because she had been paired so often against other women in the tournament.

Answer: E

Hou Yifan opened 1.g4 followed by 2.f3 and resigned after 5 moves against a weaker opponent in protest. She claimed the pairings had been rigged to make her play against other women after facing 7 women over 10 rounds when there were four times as many men as women in the tournament. It was proven afterwards that this was just a statistical freak.  The pairings had been generated by computer software which was operating correctly and takes no account of gender.

You can see the 5 moves of her controversial game here on youtube.

And here is the interview with Hou Yifan after the game.

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.308 – National Chess

Per the FIDE list how many English ladies chess players hold the title of Women Grandmaster (WGM)?
A) 1
B) 2
C) 3
D) 4
E) 5

Answer: E

The five English ladies who currently hold the title of Women Grandmaster are Jovanka Houska, Dagne Ciuksyte, Sheila Jackson, Katarzyna Tomaz and Jana Bellin. https://ratings.fide.com/topfed.phtml?ina=1&tops=1&country=ENG

Jovanka Houska

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.307 – Local Chess

In an Inter County Junior Chess Team Battle held on Saturday 1st May where did the Dorset Junior team come?
A) 1st
B) 2nd
C) 3rd
D) 4th
E) 5th

Answer: D

Our young Dorset Juniors played well but, unfortunately, with only one player above the age of 12, the team was lacking in experienced ‘big hitters’ as only the top 6 scored. However, its average score of 19 points would have put it in 2nd place had the Team Battle been scored on this basis.

The report of the Team Battle can be found here.

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.306 – Chess Laws / Trivia

In the local B&DCL, if a mobile phone rings, what is the penalty if the game can still be won by normal means by your opponent?
A) Loss of game irrespective of any agreement between the players and captains.
B) Loss of game unless there is an agreement between the players and captains.
C) One warning then loss of the game unless there is an agreement by both players.
D) Two warnings then loss of the game unless there is an agreement by both players.
E) There is no loss of the game regardless of how many times it rings but there may be another penalty.

Answer: C

This is covered in the B&DCL League Club Tournament Rules No.10 which states that …

If during a game a player’s mobile phone produces a sound that player shall be warned and must make the device silent. Should there be a repeat incident, the player shall lose the game and the opponent win, unless both players agree otherwise. However, if the opponent cannot win by any series of legal moves, the game will be a draw.

If a player is required to have their mobile phone turned on during a game e.g. for health or work reasons, that player must notify both captains as well as the opponent prior to the commencement of the game.

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.305 – Bits & Pieces!

What is the name of this opening? 1.d4 d6

2.c4 e5

A) The Woozle
B) The Rat
C) The Hawk
D) The Black Lion
E) The Vulture

Answer: B

The Rat has a solid reputation and a good set of results. Exchanging pawns on e5 and queens on d8, which is often played, may not be the best way forward for White. The opening was covered in the link below.

Animal Opening Part1: The Mammals

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.304 – International Chess

Who has recently won the 2021 ‘Covid’ Candidates Tournament and has earned the right to play Magnus Carlsen for the World Chess Championship in November 2021?
A) Anish Giri
B) Fabiano Caruana
C) Maxime Vachier-Lagrave
D) Ian Nepomniachtchi
E) Ding Liren

Answer: D

As reported in Bulletin No.60 Ian Nepomniachtchi won the Candidates with a round to spare, although the final result then looked much closer as he lost his last round game. Please see the above Bulletin for an assessment of his chances against Carlsen.

Photo by Etery Kublashvili
CC BY-SA 3.0

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.303 – National Chess

Which top English chess player was the ‘Games Consultant’ for the Cilla Black show ‘The Moment of Truth’ which commenced in the 1980s?
A) Nigel Short
B) Bill Hartston
C) Danny King
D) Raymond Keene
E) Jon Speelman

Answer: C

Although a very strong chess player, King pursued a media career as presenter, commentator, reporter and analyst, and this likely affected his playing career by limiting the opportunity for dedicated research and study.

Photo by Adam Raoof
CC BY-SA 2.0

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.302 – Local Chess

Who was the main editor of Newsknight, the B&DCL magazine which ran from 1993 to 2006?
A) Alan Dommett
B) Ian Clark
C) Martin Simons
D) Steve Shutler
E) Russ Pegg

Answer: A

As reported in Bulletin No.59 following a spinal injury in a road traffic accident, Alan took early retirement. Recognising his competitive chess playing at local clubs was likely to suffer, Alan took up two local chess roles as the Bournemouth Echo Chess Correspondent and Newsknight main Editor.

Test Your Chess Knowledge No.301 – Chess Laws / Trivia

Which was the first country in the world to make chess mandatory in schools?
A) Russia
B) Armenia
C) India
D) Hungary
E) Denmark

Answer: B

In 2011, the Ministry of Education of Armenia made chess part of the primary school curriculum along with such standards as maths and history for children over the age of six.

It’s all covered here!

Wilipedia – Chess_in_Armenia

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