Sunday, 28 June 2009

Chess for the love of it

"Chess for the love of it" isn't just a philosophy, it is also the title of a book written by A.R.B. Thomas in 1973. Part biography, part set of reminiscence's, part games collection, it covers his career from starting as a junior in 1915, participating in a couple of Hastings tournaments (where he played Keres, and Reshevsky amongst others) and even has the score of his game against an early computer chess program (MacHack VI) in 1968.
In a sense A.R.B. Thomas was representative of the 'gentlemen' chess player, even going so far as to use his initials rather than his given names. Even in his own book he just refers to himself as A.R.B and I had to search the net to discover that he was christened Andrew Rowland Benedick Thomas.
Thomas was a very sharp player and here is a fine win against the Argentinian master CE Guimard from 1937.

Thomas,A - Guimard,C [A47]
Worcester Centenary, 1937

1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 b6 3.g3 Bb7 4.Bg2 c5 5.0-0 cxd4 6.Qxd4 g6 7.Nc3 Bg7 8.e4 Nc6 9.Qa4 0-0 10.e5 Ne8 11.Re1 Nc7 12.Qh4 Ne6 13.Bh6 Na5 14.Ne4 Rc8 15.Bh3 f5 16.exf6 exf6 17.Bxe6+ dxe6 18.Bxg7 Kxg7(D)
19.Neg5 fxg5 20.Nxg5 Qd2 21.Qxh7+ Kf6 22.Rxe6+ 1-0

1 comment:

Denis Jessop said...

Not to be confused with Sir George Thomas who was the quintessential English gentleman chess player as well as a good hockey, tennis and badminton player (British chess champion twice and all-England badminton singles champion 4 times, among other things).