Wednesday, February 06, 2008


Stephen Moss in the January 28th Guardian (U.K.):
In his recent obituary of Bobby Fischer, Leonard Barden, the Guardian's veteran - how he will hate that word - chess correspondent mentioned that he played a series of short "blitz" games against the young genius when he visited the UK in 1960. What he failed to mention was that he won one of them - The Hand That Beat Fischer!

When we met last week, I said that this boast would have been the centrepiece of any piece I'd written. Barden, modest and unassuming, told me he would never be so self-promoting. It was, he pointed out, the only game he'd won in a series of 14. After that solitary victory, Fischer had said, "You British weakie, now I'm going to crush you." And he did. But I still think the omission is significant: Barden serves the game - and the truth - not himself.

This week, whether he likes it or not, some Barden-boosting is in order, because when his column appears in next Saturday's Guardian he will become a world champion. He will establish a new all-time record for the longest-running continuous chess column, beating George Koltanowski's column in the San Francisco Chronicle, which ran for 51 years nine months and 18 days from 1948 to 2000.
(via Norman Geras)

1 comment:

Larry said...

A Journalist! With a capital "J". In the paper news!