Re-match 25 years on for chess legends Kasparov, Karpov | other | Hindustan Times
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Re-match 25 years on for chess legends Kasparov, Karpov

other Updated: Sep 20, 2009 21:38 IST
AFP
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Chess legends Garry Kasparov and Anatoli Karpov will face off Monday in the Spanish city of Valencia for a five-day re-match, 25 years after their epic world championship duel.

The September 21-25 match will not carry the same suspense as the Moscow showdown between then world champion Karpov and challenger Kasparov, their first battle that dragged on five months before it was called off with no winner.

The new match will have only 12 games -- four semi-rapid and eight rapid -- with Kasparov, 46, and Karpov, 58, facing off under the watch of Dutch chess arbiter Geurt Gijssen, the Valencia regional government said.

Kasparov, who earlier said it would be more a "ceremonial tournament" with a time-limit on moves, has been training in the Norwegian capital Oslo with the 18-year-old chess prodigy Magnus Carlsen.

He is due to fly into Valencia on Sunday, organisers said.

Karpov has secluded himself for the last week in an apartment on the Spanish coast, training with a group of world-class players and with a computer, according to organisers.

The matches will be broadcast live on the Valencia regional government website (www.gva.es). Organisers said they expect some 10 million web users to follow the event in this city known as the birthplace of modern chess, where the game has been played since the 15th century.

Kasparov, now a Russian opposition politician, was only 21 and Karpov 33 at the infamous 1984 match when the winner was to be the first to take six games.

Karpov won five, Kasparov three and 40 more were draws when the World Chess Federation, in a controversial move, stopped the duel on alleged health grounds though both players said they wanted to continue.

Kasparov later defeated Karpov narrowly. He won the world championship in 1985 and defended his title the following year. The last time he played Karpov was in 1990 when he narrowly won.

Kasparov has been active in the political opposition to Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin since announcing in 2005 he was withdrawing from competitive chess and creating his own political party.

Karpov was undisputed world chess champion from 1975 to 1985 and FIDE world chess champion from 1993 to 1999. Both Karpov and Kasparov are considered among the greatest chess players ever.