Wigston Chess Club

One of the attractions in playing in international tournaments is the outside chance of getting to play one of the world’s best players if the pairings work out in the first couple of rounds.

In this game, played at the Xtracon tournament in Denmark, I am up against Alexei Shirov, the legendary attaching player from Latvia, who was once ranked no. 4 in the world.

Going into the game I set myself two objectives:

1) Avoid making a fool of myself by losing very quickly; and

2) Have an interesting game. I wanted to make the most of this once in a lifetime opportunity.

I think that on these criteria the game was a success, although I did of course lose. It is far from clear when he sacrifices his rook that the attack will be successful. There are some amazing variations, found with the help of the computer afterwards.