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Editor: Dr Tim Harding
  Dr. Tim Harding   J. H. Blackburne     Paul Morphy   Correspondence Chess history book   Captain W. D. Evans

What's New Here

 

19 (previously 2 & 9 & 15) April: Yet again we have updated Seniors news, our Seniors calendar and Irish news.

23 (previously 20) March: Our Seniors news and Seniors calendar were updated again today.

15 (previously 5 and 8) March: Again we have updated Seniors news, the Seniors calendar and Irish news.

8 March: The Seniors introduction page was updated.

3 March: Version 2 of our UltraCorr2024 database has just been released, with more than 20,000 new games and many corrections. This will be the final version of the year. Purchasers of the original version have been emailed the new passwords.

19 February: John Elburg's review of our UltraCorr2024 database is now online.

17 February: Small changes to the Seniors calendar and website home page.

14 February: At last we are able to bring you major updates to our Seniors news and calendar pages, while the Seniors introduction page is also revised.

13 February: Our website was switched to SSL security today. You should no longer have a "not secure" warning in your browser.

13 February: Irish news is updated, as are Seniors news and calendar. Bids closed on 1 February for the 2025 FIDE World Senior championships and there is one bid each for the team and individual events.

31 January: RIP Chess24 which closes down today. For many years this was the best site for watching online chess tournaments, often with great commentary. It fell into the clutches of the Play Magnus Group, which in turn was taken over by the unlovable chess.com. Chess24's premium membership and playing server (never the best) ceased in the summer of 2023 and now it has been deleted.

Also Quality Chess publishers, who we strongly recommend, launched a new site this week. Our links page is therefore updated.

30 January: Irish news is updated. Seniors news and calendar are also updated, although there is not much new to report.

22 January: We have updated some of the information files about our UltraCorr2024 database, which has already met with a good response on the first weekend after its launch. The page with additional information has been supplemented by a new page discusisng how we deal with player and tournament metadata.

22 (previously 18 & 19) January: Our Seniors calendar has been updated but there are no major new annoucements. We corrected the dates of the Bergen-Chiemgau congress in late May and the conditions of the German Senior Derby in March.

19 January: Our UltraCorr2024 correspondence chess game database is now on general release. This is not just the 2023 edition with new games added. It has in fact been totally rebuilt from its sources and re-edited to make it as accurate as possible.

Recent customers have already been offered discounts. If you bought in 2021, 2022 or 2023 but did not receive our email, your address may have changed from what you used before. If so, please contact us.

 

9 January: Our UltraCorr2024 correspondence chess game database is almost ready.

9 January: Our Seniors introduction page, Seniors news, and calendar are updated, and so is Irish news.

29 December 2023: We updated our Seniors introduction and Seniors calendar pages. Much old news has now been stripped out of the Seniors news page to clear the decks for 2024.

22 December: FIDE has received a bid to host the 2024 World Seniors individual championships in Portugal; see our news page. Today we also updated our Irish news and Irish arbiters pages.

Happy Christmas! Then don't forget to watch online some of the World Rapid and Blitz Championships which begin in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, on 26 December.

16 December: FIDE has revoked the provisional award of the 2024 World Senior individual championships that were expected to be held in Romania. There is currently a new call for bids, which closes on Thursday. See our news page.

12 (previously 5, 6, 7, 8 and 11) December: Our seniors calendar, our Seniors introduction and Seniors news are now updated including details of several tournaments that had only a skeleton listing previously. There is now a very wide choice of senior competitions in western Europe in the first half of 2024 and doubtless more will be announced later.

There has not been much senior news to report in the past three weeks so we have been working hard on preparing our correspondence game database, UltraCorr2024, which should be ready in mid-January. The two and a half million game landmark will be surpassed for the first time.

5 December: The Irish chess news page is updated too. Most of the old news has now been stripped out.

11 November: Details of the 2024 European Senior Team Championships can now be downloaded from our Senior tournament calendar. Our news page also carries the story of a disgraced senior chess master who has fled a jail sentence for fraud in England and is wanted by Interpol. Our senior introduction page has been updated too.

11 November: The Irish chess news page is updated also.

6 (previously 5) November: Our report on the FIDE World Senior Championships is now finalised, and our Senior tournament calendar, news page and introduction page have been updated.

4 (previously 1 & 2 & 3) November: Our coverage of the FIDE World Senior Championships in Terrasini, Sicily, continues. We have now published our full report after round 10 and previewing tomorrow's final round. The Open titles are yet to be decided but the female champions are known.

3 November: The Irish chess news page is updated after a long delay; apologies for missing some events of the past two weeks.

3 November: A link to the English Chess Federation's report has been added to our page about last month's World Senior Team Championships.

31 (previously 27-28-29-30) October: Our latest report on the Senior World Championships report concerns yesterday's sixth round. Today is a rest day. We have now updated with the top pairings for tomorrow's 7th round. The next major update will be tomorrow night after those games.

28 October: Specially for Hallowe'en, we remind you that our Frankenstein-Dracula story (first published in B. H. Wood's Chess magazine 45 years ago) is available again on this site for a limited period.

27 October: We added some new events to the Senior tournament calendar. We will review that again after the world championships have ended.

26 (previously 24 & 25) October: Major updates to our Seniors pages (as linked below) were done on Tuesday. We opened a new page for the 2023 World Senior individual championships, which are in progress in Terrasini, Sicily.

16 October: Major updates to Seniors news and the Senior tournament calendar, and also to Irish news.

9 October: We just updated Seniors news today, including the results of some tournaments that finished at the weekend.

6 (previously 1 and 4) October: Our Seniors news page and also the calendar and introduction pages have been updated. We are pleased to see that Krakow has now been confirmed as the venue for the 2024 World Senior Team Championships. The late entry of GM Rafael Vaganian for the individual 65+ World Championship hots up the competition in that forthcoming event.

4 October: We now have added a link to the PGN game file to our final report on the recent World Senior Team Championships.

4 (previously 1) October: Our Irish news page is changed again. Six Irish teams start today in the European Club Cup and Women's Cup in Albania. Good luck to all our representatives.

It's been a busy time doing updates at least once a day, so there may be no more major changes for a couple of weeks unless some important news breaks.

30 (previously 28 & 29) September: Our Irish news page is again updated including news of our juniors in Mexico, our seniors in North Macedonia and last Sunday's ICU agm.

29 (previously 27 and 28) September: We now have posted our detailed final report on the World Senior Team Championships which finished yesterday. Our other main Seniors pages are also updated.

26 September: We reported on a shock result at the World Senior Team Championships rthat threw the 50+ tournament wide open. Italy beat the top seeds USA.

25 September: We report on the annual general meeting of the Irish Chess Union and on yesterday's play at the World Senior Team Championships where today is a rest day.

24 September: We now have opened a separate page for the World Senior Team Championships which leaves Seniors news clear for other matters. Irish news was also updated.

23 September: We provided a partial preliminary update of Seniors news after two and a half hours play in round 5 at Struga. There was no evening update because the Ireland v South Africa match in the Rugby World Cup could not be missed. Two further small events were added to the Seniors calendar.

22 September: We have updated Seniors news for the second time today to provide a report on the top round 4 games and tomorrow's crucial pairings. In the 50+ championship the match USA v England-1 could decide the gold medal (it did last year). Our Irish news page reports on the excellent showing made so far by our under-strength 65+ team.

21 September: We updated Seniors news news during the round. We also updated the Seniors calendar and Irish news.

19 September: The World Senior Team Champions begin today in North Macedonia. We are not there in person but hope to be able to report daily on our Seniors news page. Our Seniors calendar is also updated.

19 September: Our Irish news page is updated, previewing next Sunday's ICU agm and other events.

6 (previously 2) September: Further updates to our Seniors news and Seniors calendar pages.

6 September: Our links page and page with links to national CC federations have received long-overdue updates. We have killed lots of dead links and added (or rewritten comments to) some important chess websites.

6 September: Tim Harding's personal homepage has also been updated.

6 September: A special celebration of the life and career of English double grandmaster (FIDE and ICCF) Jonathan Penrose, who died in 2021, is being planned to launch in Colchester, Essex, on 7 October. We have made our obituary article and our Chess Mail magazine interview with Penrose available again on this website.

29 August: Irish news updated, with a lot of new information and previews of coming events.

29 August: Major updates to our Seniors news and Seniors calendar pages, including a review of entries for the forthjcoming FIDE World Senior teams and individual championships. We also comment on the prize fund at the US Senior Championship.

23 (previously 18 and 20) August: Irish news updated, including a report on the Irish Women's Championship which was played last weekend. It has now become clear that the tournament winner was ineligible for the title.

Our updated report on the recent 102nd Irish Championships is now on a separate page.

18 August: Our Seniors introduction and Seniors news pages are all updated, including provisional dates and venues for the 2024 FIDE World Seniors competitions. Several new events and changes have been made on our Seniors calendar.

14 (previously 1-5, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13) August: Irish news - our reports on the 102nd Irish national championship and supporting events are now finalised. Without criticising the hard-working chief arbiter Ivan Baburin, we consider that several aspects of the organisation need to be changed before next year, which will require motions at the next ICU agm.

11 & 12 August: Our Seniors calendar is updated: the Marienbad seniors next January was added.

7 (previously 5) August: Our Seniors calendar is again updated. Thanks again to Tim Spanton for telling us about a tournament in December which we have now added.

1 August: Our recent silence was due to being away for the British Championships. We are catching up today by updating several pages, especially Seniors news, our Seniors calendar and our Irish news pages.

21 July: Our Seniors news page brought you the final result of the European Senior Team Championshipswhich we followed every day (now moved to a new page). We also have a brief report on the German senior championships, currently in progress, and preview the British Seniors which start on Monday. Our Seniors calendar is also updated.

18 July: As we warned some days earlier, our Ultracorr2023 database was withdrawn from sale today before the start of our holiday. The 2024 edition, which may be the last, is already in preparation and should be released mid-January.

11 July: The Senior calendar now has an additional 2024 tournament and more details of the Bischofsgrün festival in north Bavaria this September.

10 July (previously 1 July and 18 June): We have updated our Seniors news and Senior calendar pages, and also now our Seniors introduction page.

18 June: We updated our Irish news page.

4 (previously 3rd) June: The Seniors news page is updated with the results of the European Senior Championships which ended yesterday in Italy.

2 June: The definite venue and dates for the individual World Senior Championships have at last been announced, and both are a surprise. Our Seniors news, Seniors calendar and Seniors introduction page have all been updated.

2 June: Our Irish news page is also updated.

26 May: We have again updated our Seniors news (featuring the European Championships which started today) and our Seniors calendar which has several updates at last.

17 May (previously 2, 12 and 15 May): We have again updated our Seniors news (reporting on the English Seniors especially) and our Seniors calendar. The official invitation and regulations for the World Senior Team Championships are now available and the official website for the event will go live at the end of May according to FIDE.

21 April: Our Seniors news and Seniors calendar were updated today (see links below) but there was very little to report until mid-May.

6 April: The venue and dates for the World Senior Teams Championships were announced today.

28 March: There is little to report but again we updated our Seniors calendar page. The news page has changed a lot as we report on the latest announcements from FIDE's Events Commission. It looks as if we may get a decision about this year's Seniors championships within the next few weeks, and about time!

22 (previously 15) March: There is little to report but we updated our Seniors news and calendar pages (see links below). Our Irish news is also updated today.

7 March (previously 15 & 23 February): Our weekly updates of the Seniors news and calendar pages, and Irish news.

22 February: John Elburg's review of UltraCorr2023 is now available. The time-limited discount offer to old customers has now expired.

8 February: The FIDE Events Commission have published the four submissions to host the 2023 World Senior Team Championships. On our Seniors news page we discuss the pros and cons of each bid.

8 February (previously 29 January): Irish news updated.

29 January: The official invitation for the European Senior Teams Championships (Poland in July) has now been published and can be downloaded from our Seniors calendar.

26 January: We have reviewed all German tournaments in our Senior calendar because there have been several changes in recent weeks, some apparently due to a change in dates of the German national championships. Today we checked all events previously listed against the German calendar and chess-results.com and also added the unofficial ACO 50+ "world championship" which is essentially a holiday event.

We also revised our Seniors introduction page today and tidied up the Seniors news page.

25 January: We have received a reply from the Events Commission to our submission: see our Seniors news page. Also we added the provisional dates of the 2023 British Seniors Championships to our calendar.

25 January: Image of the new softcover edition of Steinitz in London substituted for the original on the side panel of several pages.

23 January: We added a page with further information about the editing and contents of our UltraCorr2023 database.

Updates made today included pages about Ultracorr2023, Seniors news, Seniors introduction, and Seniors calendar. FIDE now have to decide quickly between four countries bidding to host the World Senior Team Championships this year.

20 January: The softcover corrected edition of Tim Harding's book Steinitz in London is now on sale from the publisher, McFarland, and in a few weeks should become more generally available from retailers.

20 January: Our Seniors news and Seniors calendar were updated today. Details of the English Seniors Championships are now released but there is still no news about the British Seniors or FIDE's two World Senior competitions.

10 January 2023: We have updated our Seniors introduction, news and calendar pages. As we are still awaiting decisions from FIDE about its events, the main changes are to the calendar. There have been considerable alterations there: some additions and an important date change, so please study this page carefully if it is relevant to your plans for the year.

10 January: Irish news and arbiter page updated.

Most of the entries from 2022 have now been removed from this listing. We will retain the following for a weeks more.

21 December 2022: We have updated our Seniors introduction, news and calendar pages. Thanks to readers who sent us new information.

10 (previously 8) December: After a busy ten days or so since returning home from the World Seniors congress in Assisi, we have updated several pages, in particular Irish news, our Seniors introduction, calendar and news pages. We also finalised our reports on the Senior Championships (see links below) with some further edits made today.

Assisi was a splendid place to visit but unfortunately we, and many other players we spoke with, experienced serious problems with the organisation of the congress, and we have added some comments about this to our Assisi report page.

We have now split this into three pages, with separate reports on the 65+ championship and the 50+ tournament. We report on the dramatic last round fight for all four titles and include two games from the 65+.

Many players in Assisi have thanked us for running these pages and asked us when and where next year's three "missing" FIDE events will be held, but unfortunately the answer still is: no decision! FIDE really needs to get its act together on this.

29 September: McFarland publishers are preparing a softcover edition of Steinitz in London to be released some time eraly in 2023. It can be pre-ordered on their website.

4 July: The Candidates tournament ended in Madrid. Please read our final report.

30 (previously 28 & 29) June: The World Senior Team Championships ended yesterday and our final report shows that England won both tournaments and are also 50+ women's champions.

9 & 11 June: Updates to our main page about Steinitz in London, reviews page, the errata page and research notes.

3 June: Updates to our reviews page for Steinitz in London.

3 June: Our arbiter page now includes a download link for the 2022 FIDE Arbiter Manual.

7 May: Frankenstein and Dracula at the chessboard: once more we revive this old legend.

2 April: Steinitz book reviews page updated with some extracts from the latest notice in Quarterly for Chess History 23.

21 March: Added a new item to our Steinitz research notes page, concerning the Vienna 1882 tournament.

24-25 February: Russia launches an unprovoked criminal invasion of Ukraine. Chess24 was first to report that FIDE has decided to seek a new host nation for the 2022 Chess Olympiad which was due to be played in Moscow. Another report says some have called for FIDE President, Arkady Dvorkovich (currently in Uganda), to resign.

Because of the importance of the game of chess in Russian culture, it is particularly important that chess players elsewhere in the world stand up and be counted.

23 February (previously 9th, 15th, 16th & 18 February:) Revised our Steinitz errata page.

Several points which are not strictly speaking errors in the text can be found in a new page of research notes which we may develop in future. (Four new items were added to that page this week.) We show, for example, that chessgames.com purports to have the missing game Winawer-Steinitz, Baden-Baden 1870 but they are wrong and should delete it from their database.

 

21 January: Our UltraCorr2022 database was launched.

 

We are only retaining a few pre-2022 links but those mentioned below are to pages that are still worth reading.

10 December 2021: World Championship match ends in a crushing win for Magnus Carlsen. We have now finalised that page and updated our page about qualifiers for the 2022 Candidates.

7 December 2021: Obituary of Jonathan Penrose including Tim Harding's complete interview from 2000 with him about his postal chess career (PDF format).

22 November 2021: Obituary of Grigory Sanakoev, the 12th correspondence chess world champion.

8 October 2021: Photograph of the elderly J. H. Blackburne and his third wife posted on our new Blackburne family page.

27 September 2021: Tim's personal home page updated; this was long overdue (but needs to be redone soon in 2023).

30 August 2021: Obituary page for the late GM Evgeny Sveshnikov.

26 August 2021: Further update of our page about notices of Steinitz in London. The latest glowing review appeared in American Chess Magazine.

26 August 2021: Our links page updated for the first time in 11 months. Probably needs more work; please advise us of errors and broken links.

12 August 2021: Updated our page about notices of Steinitz in London. Somehow we had overlooked a 4-star review by GM Matthew Sadler which was published earlier this year in New In Chess magazine.

23 April 2021: Added a new page about notices of Steinitz in London. Including a translation of glowing review in Polish magazine Mat saying "This book is a milestone in the literature of chess history."

12 February 2021: Another new article about problems with later Steinitz games in databases.

7 February 2021: Start of a new series about errors in historic databases. Lasker v Steinitz match games go under the microscope. We also updated our research index and work in progress pages.

4 February 2021: We have updated our Steinitz errata page, also mentioning a letter which provides more information about Viennese chess a few years before Steinitz.

18 November 2020: Tim's article about Steinitz has been published in New In Chess magazine.

29 October 2020: The 7-part Netflix television drama The Queen's Gambit, based on the novel by Walter Tevis about a female chess prodigy in the 1960s, is beautifully made and we highly recommend it.

24 October 2020: Posted quotes from Richard James's review of Steinitz in London.

14 September 2020: New information added to our page about Steinitz in London. Our author copies arrived last week.

31 August 2020: Publishers McFarland announce that Steinitz in London is in stock at last.

4 July 2020: Tim Harding was officially notified that his application for the title of FIDE Arbiter is approved. Tim's homepage is also updated.

3 July (previously 26 June) 2020: FIDE decided to approve an online Seniors event but as yet there are no details of when or how it will be organised. (It never happened.)

19 June 2020: Update on books by the late Mark Dvoretsky. A fifth, posthumous, edition of his Endgame Manual has just been published.

5 May 2020 (new article): How Sir Theodore Tylor, the blind chess master, was portrayed in a novel.

30 March 2020: Early Blackburne game with H. E. Atkins turns up. More Blackburne game corrections sent in by readers. We also posted on that page today PDF copies of the birth and death certificates of John Blackburn (who died in infancy), a brother of the chess master whose existence was unknown to us when we wrote our biography.

27 January 2018: The death occurred of Max Zavanelli, a leading figure in ICCF and American correspondence chess for decades, and a major supporter of Chess Mail in the years when we published our printed magazine. Max had been battling cancer for a long time. The ICCF website has an obituary. Along with George Pyrich and Carlos Flores Gutierrez (see below), who both died just before Christmas, Max was a major figure in guiding the transition of ICCF from the postal to the internet era.

13 January 2018: Made numerous minor corrections to our pages about 7-man endgames. There is a wealth of chess here for anyone who has not yet studied these endings.

24 December 2017: Sad news of the death of an old friend, CC-IM George Pyrich (1951-2017), the Financial Director of ICCF (pictured right). We met George at numerous ICCF Congresses between 1994 and 2015 and always enjoyed his company. Latterly he lived in Spain but he was a native of Kirkcaldy, Fife, Scotland. His death is a sad loss to the correspondence chess community worldwide. The ICCF website carries an obituary by Scottish CC Association President, Iain Mackintosh, and also an obituary by Alan Borwell of Carlos Flores Gutierrez, another old friend and major figure of his generation in CC. See also our Hans Berliner obituary.

24 October 2017: Updated Blackburne book information, with the recently rediscovered finish to the game Blackburne-Jacobs from the 1904 British Championship. (Thanks to John Saunders.) Also Blackburne's last published game, from his final visit to Glasgow.