Raymond Keene

Raymond Keene is The Spectator's chess columnist.

Homage to Kramnik

16 February 2019 9:00 am

The former world champion Vladimir Kramnik recently announced his retirement from competitive chess. He is one of the greats of the…

no. 541

16 February 2019 9:00 am

Black to play. This position is from Gelfand–Kramnik, Berlin 1996. This is one of Kramnik’s finest finishes. Can you spot…

Kramnik retires

9 February 2019 9:00 am

A notable feature from the recently concluded elite tournament at Wijk aan Zee was the abject failure of former world…

no. 540

9 February 2019 9:00 am

Black to play. This position is from Kasparov-Kramnik, Dos Hermanas 1996. Kramnik played 1 … Qh1+ and soon won. But he…

A tale of two tournaments

2 February 2019 9:00 am

The start of the year sees the elite of the chess world divided between Wijk aan Zee in Holland and…

no. 539

2 February 2019 9:00 am

Black to play. This is from Howell-Bilguun, Gibraltar 2019. How can Black play for the win? Answers to me at…

Game changer

26 January 2019 9:00 am

Game Changer, the long-awaited book by Matthew Sadler and Natasha Regan, has now appeared. This represents the most thorough inside…

no. 538

26 January 2019 9:00 am

White to play. This is from Carlsen-Rapport, Wijk aan Zee 2019. The influence of AlphaZero is being felt at elite…

Knockout

19 January 2019 9:00 am

The 2018 UK Knockout, won by Gawain Jones, ahead of Luke McShane (silver) and Michael Adams (bronze), was played in…

no. 537

19 January 2019 9:00 am

White to play. This position is from Jones-McShane, UK Knockout, London 2018. White’s next move was the start of a…

Three titans

12 January 2019 9:00 am

The Dutch grandmaster Genna Sosonko specialises in biographies of the greats of the Soviet era. His earlier forays covered the…

no. 536

12 January 2019 9:00 am

Black to play. This position is from Botvinnik-Smyslov, World Championship, Moscow (Game 18) 1958. How could Smyslov have forced instant…

Game of the year

5 January 2019 9:00 am

The time has come again when I award the accolade of most spectacular game of the year. It adds lustre if…

no. 535

5 January 2019 9:00 am

Black to play. This is a variation from today’s game Aronian-Kramnik, Berlin 2018. How can Black briskly conclude his kingside…

Leviathan

15 December 2018 9:00 am

Last week I compared the Norwegian world chess champion Magnus Carlsen to a lurking crocodile, ready to grab its oblivious…

Puzzle

15 December 2018 9:00 am

White to play. This is a variation from Carlsen-Caruana, World Championship (Game 11), London 2018. Carlsen set a small trap…

Beneath the surface

8 December 2018 9:00 am

After 12 games of classical chess, the world championship between the incumbent, Magnus Carlsen of Norway, and his American challenger,…

Chess Puzzle

8 December 2018 9:00 am

Black to play. This is a variation from Caruana-Carlsen, World Championship (Game 10), London 2018. Black is a rook down.…

Atticus

1 December 2018 9:00 am

The Epistle to Dr Arbuthnot by Alexander Pope contains a memorable excoriation of his fellow wit and former friend Joseph…

Dante’s millions

24 November 2018 9:00 am

As I write, the London world championship is tied at 3½-3½, after seven games. In striving to move ahead, the…

no. 533

24 November 2018 9:00 am

White to play. This is a variation from Caruana-Carlsen, World Championship, London 2018. White has sacrificed a piece in order…

Paradise mislaid

17 November 2018 9:00 am

World champion Magnus Carlsen missed several chances to win with black in the first game of his title defence, currently…

no. 532

17 November 2018 9:00 am

Black to play. This is a variation from Carlsen–Caruana (Game 2), London 2018. White has forked the black bishop and…

Nos morituri

10 November 2018 9:00 am

Magnus Carlsen and Fabiano Caruana, those two gladiators of the mind, will duel in London during the remainder of this…

no. 531

10 November 2018 9:00 am

White to play. This is from Carlsen-Caruana, Bilbao 2012. Black has blundered right out of the opening. How did Carlsen…