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hosted by Chess Queen™ & 12th Women's World Chess Champion Alexandra Kosteniuk


Wednesday, September 30, 2009

September 2009 AK Puzzle Contest Winners

Hello everyone!

September is over. It's time to announce the winners of the September Alexandra Kosteniuk Grand-Prix Puzzle Contest.

Out of all the solutions received only 5 solutions were perfectly correct.

Here are the full answers to the puzzles:

The first position is the position of Greco of 1623. Black starts and despite the fact that he doesn't have 2 pawns, makes a draw by playing:

1. ... Ra1+ 2. Rf1 Rxf1+ 3. Kxf1 and now the bishop sacrifice 3. ... Bh3! with the idea to double the pawns on the h file or take the pawn g2 on the next move and after that the draw is unavoidable. Since the h8 square is Black and White has a white-squared bishop, that means that if the Black king will get to the h8 square White will not be able to get him out of the corner and it's a theoretical draw.

The second puzzle is the position from the game Gunsberg - Chigorin of 1890:

Chigorin continued the game with the brilliant move 35. ... Rxf3!! 36. Qxf3 ( If 36. Rh4, then Black has two possibilities to play "36. ... Rg3+ 37. Kxg3 Qxh4 38. Kf3 Qh3+ 39. Kf2 Rf7+ 40. Ke1! Qg3+ 41. Kd1 Rf2 winning the Queen - Chigorin" or to play "36. ... Qxh4 37. Kxf3 Qh3+ 38. Kf2 Qh2+ 39. Ke1 Qg3+ 40. Kd1 Rh1+ 41. Kd2 Rh2 -+ - Kasparov") 36. ... Qd2+ 37. Kg1 Bf2+ ( 37. ... Nd4 was also possible, but 37. ... Rf7 doesn't work here, I got many solutions with this move proposed in view of 38. Qxf7+ Kxf7 39. Rf1+ Kg8 40. Bc1! and Black will be able only to make a draw after Bf2+ 41. Kg2 Qe2 42. Rxf2 Qxg4+ with perpetual) 38. Kf1 Nd4! 39. Bxd4 Qxc1 40. Ke2 Rxh1 41. Bxf2 Qxb1 42. g5 Qf1+, and Gunsberg resigned.

The third puzzle is the corrected version of the study by Gijs van Breukelen. Immediately after publishing this puzzle I got a message on Facebook from Jim Plaskett who pointed out to me that there was a big discussion about this puzzle not so long ago on and I needed to correct this puzzle a little bit by putting the White pawn on h2, so it can work out.

White wins by playing 1. Nf6+ Kg7 (Kh8 2. d8Q+ winning; 1. ...Kg6 2. Bh5+ and 3. d8Q since there is no more fork on f7 possible after Bh5+) 2. Nh5+ Kg6 (2. ... Kf7 3. d8Q) 3. Bc2+! Kxh5 (3. ... Kf7 4. d8Q) 4. d8Q Nf7+ 5. Ke6 Nxd8 6. Kf5! (threatens mate in 2 after Bd1+ and Bxe2#) e2 7. Be4! (threatens Bf3#) e1N 8. Bd5! (threatens Bd5-b3-d1# and the text) c2 9. Bc4 (threatens Be2#) c1N 10. Bb5 (threatens Be8#) Nc7 11. Ba4 (threatens Bd1 with an unstoppable mate) Nc2 12. Bxc2 Ne2 13. Bd1 c4 14. Bxe2#.

So the winners are:

1. Jeremy Madison, on Twitter @jellybeanmasher
2. Renato Oliveira
3. Medhat Moheb

these 3 winners will get their September prizes.

Petar Kozarev and Leonard McLaren have also solved the puzzles correctly so they get the Grand-Prix points and still have chances to win the Grand-Prix prize at the end of the year.


The winners can send me an email with their postal address and the prizes will be shipped out to them!

Soon I will post 3 new October 09 puzzles, get ready!

Posted by: Alexandra Kosteniuk
Women's World Chess Champion

Labels: ,

First ACP Women's World Rapid Cup to be held in Turkey

The Association of chess professionals (ACP) together with the Turkish Chess Federation from November 30 till December 4, 2009 will be holding the first ACP Women's World Rapid Cup.

Below you will find the official press-release with the rules and conditions for all the participants.

Tournament Regulations:

I. Place and date

The tournament will be held in Rixos Hotel, Konya, Turkey from November 30th to December 4th 2009.

II. Tournament’s system

The 1st ACP Women World Rapid Cup will be a Round Robin tournament with twelve participants including

- eight qualifiers from the ACP Women Series:

1. Kosintseva Tatiana
2. Kosteniuk Alexandra
3. Pogonina Natalya
4. Kosintseva Nadezhda
5. Cramling Pia
6. Cmilyte Viktorija
7. Zhukova Natalya
8. Javakhishvili Lela

- three Turkish Chess Federation nominees

- one ACP nominee

Games will be played with the following time control: 20 minutes each at the start of the game with an increment of 5 seconds per move from move 1.

In case of tie for the first place, a tie-break will be played to determine a winner.

III. Players conditions

All players are provided with a full board accommodation at the Rixos hotel, Konya.
All players are provided with a free transfer from/to the Konya airport
All players get a compensation of their travelling expenses up to USD 500.

IV. Prizes

The total prize fund of the event amounts to USD 20,000. Prizes will be distributed as follows:
Winner USD 5,000
2nd place USD 4,000
3rd place USD 3,000
4th place USD 2,000
5th place USD 1,500
6th place USD 1,000
7th place USD 800
8th place USD 700
9-12 places, each USD 500

In case of tie for any place accept the first, prize money will be shared equally.

V. Tournament’s schedule

Nov 30


9 p.m. Opening Ceremony

Dec 1

11:30 a.m. 1st round
12:30 a.m. 2nd round
3:00 p.m 3rd round
4:00 p.m. 4th round

Dec 2

11:30 a.m. 5th round
12:30 a.m. 6th round
3:00 p.m 7th round
4:00 p.m. 8th round

Dec 3

11:30 a.m. 9th round
12:30 a.m. 10th round
3:00 p.m. 11th round
4:30 p.m. tie-break

6 p.m.: Closing ceremony

Dec 4


VI. Miscellaneous

Games will be played under the current FIDE Rules, with the addition of the ’Corsican rule’ (draw offer is forbidden).

Illegal moves do not lose the game. Nevertheless, each illegal move will be penalized by a 2-minute addition on the opponent’s clock.

In all tie-break games, any illegal move leads to the immediate loss of the game.

Tie-break system.

If two players tie for the first place, a blitz match of 4 games will be played to determine the winner. The time control will be 3 minutes each at the start of the game with an increment of 2 seconds per move from move 1.
If a match ends in a draw, two additional two blitz games will have to be played. The time control will be 3 minutes each at the start of the game with an increment of 2 seconds per move from move 1.
If this tie-break match again ends in a draw (1-1), a last game will have to be played. This final tie-break will consist of a single blitz game where White starts with 5 minutes and needs to win the game in order to win the match (sudden death game). Black, on his part, only needs a draw to win the match, but has only 4 minutes at the start of the game. This final tie-break game will be played without time increment.

If three or more players tie for the first place, a round robin (or double round robin) blitz tournament will be played to determine the winner. An exact format will depend on a number of players and will be announced by the chief arbiter. The time control will be 3 minutes each at the start of the game with an increment of 2 seconds per move from move 1.

I have confirmed my participation to this tournament!

Posted by: Alexandra Kosteniuk
Women's World Chess Champion

Labels: ,

Monday, September 28, 2009

Soviet Chess Legend Kira Alekseevna Zvorykina turns 90 today!

On September 29, 2009, the famous soviet chess player Kira Alekseyevna Zvorykina turns 90(!) years old!

Kira Zvorykina is a woman international grandmaster, international arbiter, 3-times USSR chess champion (1951, 1953 and 1956), 2-times winner of the Chess Olympiads in 1957 and 1963, the winner of the Candidates tournament in 1959, 2-times vice-champion of the world (played 2 final matches in 1959 and 1960 against Elizaveta Bykova).

Kira Alekseyevna was born on September 29, 1919 in Nikolaev (Ukraine). Her great-grandparents were from a very good family. They owned a house in Murom, were quite wealthy and had a very good education . Her grandfather Konstantin Alekseevich Zvorykin was a scientist and has written a work on metallurgy. He was the head of the politechinal institute in Kiev. He had threee children – Peter, Aleksey (the father of Kira) and Kozma.

Aleksey Konstantinovich Zvorykin (cousin of the famous pioneer in television engineering Vladimir Kozmich Zvorykin) and Lidiya Terpugova were Kira’s parents. Kira was one of their seven children.

In 1924 the Zvorykin’s family moved to Leningrad. Everbody in the Zvorykin’s family loved to play chess and it was their favorite past-time. But since they only had one chess-set for 9 people home chess tournaments always took a very long time to finish. Most of all Kira liked to play with her father, who was an expert chess player. One day Kira managed to beat him and he suggested that Kira to go to a chess club to learn to play chess better.

Since in 1918 Vladimir Kozmich Zvorykin emigrated from Russia and left to live and work to the US, Kira Zvorykin’s family faced a very tragic destiny. Her father Aleksey, the main engineer and constructor of the ships for the USSR Sea Frontier-Guard, was arrested, named “enemy of the people” and sent to prison in 1928 and was only rehabilitaded in 1964.

After her father's arrest their family was labeled a "traitor of Motherland family members" and that meant that the mother with a good educational degree couldn't find a decent job and had to work as a washwoman in order to be able to feed her 7 children.

So the childhood of Kira Alekseyevna was very far from a bright and happy childhood that one may dream of.

Despite all the problems that her family needed to go over, as Kira herself says "all these obstacles only made our family stronger".

She didn’t like to study chess very much but once by coincidence went to the legendary Palace of Young Pioneers' Chess Club in Leningrad that was led Peter Romanovsky. She started taking chess classes from him regularly. Here is 1937 Kira’s win over the second women’s world chess champion-to be Liudmila Rudenko:

Liudmila Rudenko - Kira Zvorykina, Leningrad, 1937:

1.d4 Nf6 2.Nd2 d6 3.e4 Nbd7 4.Bd3 g6 5.Qe2 e5 6.d5 a5 7.Nh3 Bg7 8.O-O O-O 9.c4 Nc5 10.Bc2 Bxh3 11.gxh3 Nh5 12.Nb3 Nd7 13.Bd2 a4 14.Nc1 Qh4 15.Qg4 Qe7 16.Ne2 Ndf6 17.Qf3 Kh8 18.a3 Ng8 19.Nc3 Bh6 20.Bxh6 Nxh6 21.Nxa4 Nf4 22.Nc3 f5 23.Ne2 fxe4 24.Bxe4 Qh4 25.Kh1 Nxh3 26.Qd3 Rxf2 27.Bg2 Rxf1+ 28.Rxf1 Nf2+ 29.Rxf2 Qxf2 30.b4 Ng4 31.Qf3

31. ... Rxa3! 32.Qxg4 Ra1+ 33.Bf1 Rxf1+ 34.Ng1 Rxg1+ 35.Qxg1 Qxg1+ 36.Kxg1 Kg7 37.c5 Kf6 38.Kf2 e4 39.c6 b6 40.Ke3 Ke5 0-1

In 1937 she became the Leningrad Schoolgirl Champion and also began studying at the Institute of Cinematography. When the Second World War started her institute was evacuated to Alma-Aty where she didn’t have any time to partice chess and got back to it only when the Second World War was over.

Kira Alekseyevna came back to chess by coincidence. Once her friend Valya Belova came to visit her and brought many delicious things like ham, cacao and so on. In the after-war years it was a real rarity. Soon Kira found out that all these tasteful things her friend got by a special card that was given to her as the city’s champion. Before the war Kira always took over Belova in their direct encounters and so Zvorykina decided to start playing chess again. She started to work with Semen Furman who later became the trainer of Anatoly Karpov. And that’s how the chess career of Kira Alekseyevna Zvorykina started.

After a few years of training and tournaments in 1951 Kira Alekseyevna became the USSR women’s chess champion.

Zvorykina married chess grandmaster and trainer Alexey Suetin and in 1952 their son Aleksandr was born. That’s why she didn't play in the 1952 USSR chess championship.

In 1952 the USSR chess federation let the leading women's chess players compete in the quarterfinals of the USSR chess championships. Kira often played in men's tournaments. Here is a photo of her playing against none other than Mikhail Tal:

In 1953, Zvorykina became the USSR chess champion again.

(From left to right: Eduard Gufeld, Kira Zvorykina, Mikhail Tal and general Shevtsov)

Kira Alekseyevna had a chance to work with great chess trainers of her times such as Romanovsky, Furman, Konstantinopolsky, Boleslavsky. Maybe that's why despite her late start in chess she managed to rise to the top of the women's chess.

Her greatest success occurred in Plovdiv at the Women's Candidates Tournament of 1959, when victory over a strong field earned her a match with reigning Women's World Champion Elizaveta Bykova for the title.

She wasn't very succesful in the matches for the world title. In December 1959 she lost her match against Elizaveta Bykova. In the 1960 match Kira lost to Bykova again with the score 4½–8½.

Representing the Soviet Union at the Chess Olympiads of 1957 (Emmen) and 1963 (Split), Zvorykina produced two sparkling, medal-winning performances. On the first Olympiad, on the second board she scored 12 points out of 14, securing both individual and team gold. In 1963 she scored an impressive 5½ out of 6, helping the team to win another gold medal.

Kira Zvorykina not only played chess and was active in tournaments and matches she also ran a chess school and was a dictor of a chess TV program. She still takes part in veteran chess tournaments.

Kira Zvorykina with Nona Gaprindashvili

Here is her win over the third women's world chess champion Elizaveta Bykova, this game was played in 1955.

Kira Zvorykina - Elizaveta Bykova, XVII USSR women's chess championship, 1955

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 exd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Be7 6.Bf4 O-O 7.Qd2 a6 8.Bd3 b5 9.O-O c5 10.Nf5 Bxf5 11.exf5 d5 12.Rfe1 b4 13.Nd1 Nc6 14.c3 a5 15.Bb5 Na7 16.Ba4 Nc8 17.Ne3 bxc3 18.bxc3 d4 19.Nf1 dxc3 20.Qxc3 Ra7 21.Rad1 Qb6 22.Rb1 Qa6 23.Ne3 Nb6 24.Bc6 Rc8 25.Bb5 Qb7 26.Bc4 Bd8

27.Nd5! Qc6 28.Rxb6 Bxb6 29.Ne7+ Rxe7 30.Rxe7 Nd5 31.Bxd5 Qxd5 32.Qe1 Qc6 33.f6 g6

34.Rxf7! Bd8 35.Re7 Qxf6 36.Re8+ Kf7 37.Bh6 g5 38.Rf8+ Kg6 39.Rxf6+ Bxf6 40.Bxg5 Kxg5 41.Qxa5 Bd4 42.Qa7 Rf8 43.Qe7+ Rf6 44.Kf1 h6 45.a4 Kf5 46.f3 Re6 47.Qd7 Ke5 48.a5 Rd6 49.Qb7 c4 50.Qb5+ Rd5 51.Qxc4 Rc5 52.Qe2+ Kd6 53.Qd2 Rc4 54.a6 Ra4 55.Qxh6+ Kc5 56.Qf8+ Kb5 57.Qe8+ Ka5 58.Qc6 Bb6 59.g4 Ra1+ 60.Ke2 Kxa6 61.Qa8+ Ba7 62.Qc8+ Kb5 63.Qb7+ Bb6 64.Qd5+ Ka6 65.h4 Ra3 66.Qc6 Re3+ 67.Kd2 1-0

When this August I visited the Olga Rubtsova memorial in Moscow, Kira Alekseyevna was one of the participants of this tournament.

Kira Alekseyevna is second on the left, standing just behind me, Moscow, August 2009

She played and fought in every game! After the tournament I agreed to make an interview with her and when I came to visit her I was charmed by this lady. Kira Alekseyevna has a very sharp sense of humor, she was telling me so many funny stories of her life with such enthusiasm that I could only say that I'm very happy and honored to succeed her in Russian chess.

From the bottom of my heart on this day I wish Kira Alekseyevna health, happiness and many more wins over the chess board!

Alexandra Kosteniuk
Women's World Chess Champion


Sunday, September 27, 2009

Help Needed for 11-year old South African Girl

Today I received the following email from Sune de Toit from South Africa. I've been to the same situation many times when I was a little girl. So if you can please help this little girl to make her dream come true!

"Dear Reader / To Whom it may concern"

Chess is not one of the major sport codes in South-Africa and relies on individual businesses to financially assist our SA Champions to compete at this level. It would be unfortunate if these talented, hard-working Junior Chess Champions were to be denied this opportunity due to a lack of finances.

I am appealing to you for financial support and assistance or long-term sponsorship to be able to reach for the stars, to be the best I can in 2010- World Youth Chess Championships - Greece.

Please, have it in your heart and be so kind to read through my curriculum vitae.

Kind Regards
Suné du Toit

Parents: Engela and Gys du Toit
Cell nr : 0832906002


My name is Suné du Toit, I am 11 years old.

I am Afrikaans speaking. I am a scholar in Elarduspark primary School in Pretoria and in Gr 5.

I enjoy school with all the activities very much. I enjoy drama, eisteddfod, public speaking, playing in the school’s orchestra, learning the shofar, and reading a lot because it learns me being presentable, being able to handle myself in a crowd, being marketable and having something, someone admiring me for.


Netball is my favourite sport that keeps me fit and healthy.


Photography, swimming, being in nature, spending time with my family, friends and animals.


CHESS is my favourite mind game. Chess is a competitive game played between two players.
Today, chess is one of the world’s most popular games, played by millions of people worldwide in clubs, online, in tournaments and informally.

I love playing friendly with my dad; he was my coach when I start playing chess at the age of 6 years.

I have a deep passion for chess and works hard to promote my beloved sport and to be the best I can.

I am holding on to the key to be an ambassador for my country and good chess player – hard word, practice every day, discipline and focusing.

Chess stimulates the whole brain thinking; enhance emotional development, bringing children together.

Children become more confident and learn to take responsibility for their actions.
Chess empower children to success and helping them to grow one step at a time, just like the pawn in chess. Chess plays a symbolic role in art and literature.

I love reading books about chess – Alice in wonderland (Lewis Carroll), Wizard Chess (Harry Potter series), Checkmate – a Ballet (Arthur Bliss), Chess – musical (Tim Rice).

At the Women’s Open Chess Championships I have met the lead actor, lead singer, CITO from the pop group Wonder boom who played the part of Bobby Fisher in “Chess the musical”


My dream is to be the best I can, to be happy in what I am doing and to enjoy Chess as for the game it is. I want to be one of the best female chess players in the world.

Every young child loves the opportunity to play for their country and I AM ONE OF THEM.


2009 - Provincial Schools D4 Individual trials …I scored 6/6 –
U13 girls, Selected for the Gauteng Individual Chess team
Participitation December 2009

2009 - Top U/12 girl Gauteng North Junior Chess

2009 –Selected to be part of the Gauteng North team
(Provincial colours)
- U/12A Team, will participate December 2009 in Cape
Town, University of Cape Town

2009 - Board one player for Elarduspark Primary School in Pretoria
- Top School winners (2008)

2009 - Represent SA at an International tournament in SA against
Namibia and other schools.

2009 – Women’s open- Woodlands Shopping centre
Playing against Melissa Greeff – South Africa ’s
Women’s International Chessmaster

2008 - Board one player for Elarduspark Primary School
Girls team- Gauteng Top School winners selected to participate and represent SA at an International Tournament 2009

2008 - Represent S.A. in Vietnam at the World Youth Chess

2008 - My selection to be part of the team going to St Lo, France 2009, (due to financial difficulties I couldn’t go)

2008 –selected to be part of the Gauteng North -
Team (provincial colours)

2007 – Selected to be part of the WP team (provincial colours)

2007 - My selection to be part of the team of junior champions to represent SA at the World Youth Championships to be held in Vietnam (19-31 October 2008)

2007 - I have met Jennifer Shahade at the Women’s Open,
Womens’s Grandmaster, from America The Crest Centre, Midrand

2007 - I participate in a simultaneous with Hungarian Grandmaster,
Demitri Reimitri Reinderman and South Africa ’s
International Master, Watu Kobese


Jennifer Shahade

- a Two-time American Women Chess Champion, promoting women chess worldwide. Jennifer Shahade is a Women’s Grand-master, coach, writer and two-time American Women’s Chess Champion (2002, 2004). She has given inspirational talks and lessons all over the world, including an all girls’ school in Soweto, South Africain 2007.

Susan Polgar - a Hungarian- American chess player, one of the strongest female players ever. She made history in 1986 by being the first ever female player to qualify to compete in the Men’s World Chess Championship.

Alexandra Kosteniuk - an International Woman Grandmaster (WGM) (1998) and an International Master among men (IM) (2000). During the FIDE Congress in Calvia (2004). She was awarded the title of Grandmaster (Men), thus she became the 10th woman in the whole history of chess who got this title. Her dad, Konstantin Vladimirovich – taught her to play chess when she was 5 years old.

Anzel Solomon’s from South Africa.

Best WP Women Player in 2008 (Women international Master). Drew with the Women’s world Champion GM Xu Yuhua when she represented SA at the Women’s World Championship in Russia in September 2008. Board one for SA at the Dresden Olympiad in November 2008.


Watu Kobese, from Waterkloof Academy in Pretoria.

International Master (IM) Watu Kobese coaches about 50 students at the Waterkloof Academy chess centre/ School for young stars


I am a girl in the Chess world, dominated by boys with lots of intimidation.
It is not always easy to play with a boy as opponent but I am emotionally strong enough to play a strong and good game – win or loose.
I believe in myself and know that God will protect me in the World of Chess.
Loose or Win …I will be back the next round.


“Chess is about the mind, how you think, it’s not about what you looks like or how you dress.
The minds makes chess a level playing field, you’re all equals here…” - Richard Mason in Knights of the South Bronx .
“Chess is always a battle, a battle of beautiful ideas.
That is what I loved about chess, you don’t get a black eye, and you legs don’t get busted.
You learn how to trust your mind. In life you get much further with your mind, than your fist…..” - David Mac Enult


1. Gauteng Schools / District Sport Officials:
Tournament Director :
Antoinette Kichenbrand (0827786461 )
Communications: Jannie Walstrand

2. Gauteng North Junior Chess assosiation :
Nico Botha

3. Chess South Africa :
President : Emelia Ellappen
Secretary: Lynn van Rensburg

4. Simultaneous:
Ramlodie: Rista de Beer

5. Waterkloof Academy / School for young stars:
Marissa van der Merwe

6. International Tournaments :
Team manager 2008:
Kevin Jurius: Viëtnam
Team manager 2009
Madelein Hugo: St Lo
E-mail: "

Posted by: Alexandra Kosteniuk
Women's World Chess Champion


Saturday, September 26, 2009

US women's chess championship starts in a week

The US women's chess championship will start in a week, on October 3, 2009 in Saint Louis.

As the organizers say during this event one will be able to find everything that he/she can be interested in, from exciting games to Jazz concert.

On October 3 the defending women's chess champion Anna Zatonskih will give a blindfolded simultaneous exhibition on 5 boards! About more exciting events during the championship, visit this page -

The championship games start Oct. 4, and will be played at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis, 4657 Maryland Ave., St. Louis. The round-robin format means that all players face each other once over nine playing days. The final playing day, Oct. 13, will include a tiebreaker game, if necessary, to determine a winner. All games are open to the public. For more information, call the Chess Club at 314-361-2437. The tournament is sanctioned by the U.S. Chess Federation.

The tournament chair of the US women's chess championship Jennifer Shahade just came out with the 8th episode of the US chess scoop that features women's chess. You can watch it below.
I'm sure it will be a very exciting events and I wish good luck to all the participants and may the strongest win!

Posted by: Alexandra Kosteniuk
Women's World Chess Champion


Friday, September 25, 2009

St. Christopher's by-the-Sea School in Key Biscayne

Hello my friends!

My family and I recently moved to the wonderful island of Key Biscayne. It's a very quiet and peaceful island with a beautiful lighthouse. This island is sometimes called the island paradise. The Sony Ericsson Open takes place every Spring here, and people are trying to be in shape, so everywhere you can see everybody doing exercise.

There are many schools on our island. I was invited today to make a chess presentation to the St. Christopher’s by-the-Sea Montessori School, where starting at the beginning of this year a chess club was created. So I came to visit this school and gave 5 presentation lessons from Pre-Kindergarten to Upper Elementary.

Everybody had a very good time, even the smallest kids were very interested about hearing about the game of chess.

I was not the only one to visit the kids, a very special visitor from the Chess Kingdom came to meet the children as well, my little assistant the Queen puppet. And the kids liked her very much.

My puppet's name is Her Majesty the Queen, and she told the kids many interesting things about Chess and the Chess Kingdom. What surprised me a lot that in every class I asked where the White Queen is supposed to start the game. And in every class I got the answer "White" and when I asked "Why?", the answer was "Because she is White, she likes her color"! And these kids didn't even know all the rules of the game!

The older students enjoyed a "more serious" approach to the topic. But they also took a very active part in the lesson.

So I was very happy that everything went so well. And I hope to hear more news about these kids since with such interest and enthusiasm there is a great potential for the chess club to have many talented young chess players.

After these lessons I went to pick-up my my daughter from Pre-School (isn't it amazing how time flies?) and we went together to the grocery store.

Don't you think that we look alike? ;)

To end this post here is a small combination from one of my blitz-games for you to solve:

Black just played 24. ... h5, what is the strongest move for White right now?

Posted by: Alexandra Kosteniuk
Women's World Chess Champion