Youngest Chess Champ Kasparov Praises Dethroned King Karpov
MOSCOW (AP) _ Garri Kasparov, at 22 the new king of the chess world, praised dethroned champion Anatoly Karpov Sunday as an ″outstanding″ opponent who often demoralized him during Karpov’s grueling bid to retain his crown.
Kasparov swept fellow Soviet Karpov off the board Saturday night with a display of attacking chess that made him the youngest World Chess Champion ever.
Pulling off a stunning victory with the black pieces to take the chess title 13 points to 11, Kasparov captured the title he said he was cheated out of in 51/2 months of marathon play halted in February.
On Saturday, the 24th and final game of the match, the 34-year-old Karpov resigned after Kasparov’s 42nd move.
Karpov is entitled to a rematch within six months under World Chess Federation (FIDE) rules.
The tension that kept hundreds of spectators in Moscow’s Tchaikovsky Hall buzzing with expectation for the last hour of play erupted when Kasparov played his 40th move, QA7ch-Q-R2ch.
The crowd rose to its feet, cheering and clapping. Security men spread out through the playing hall and lined up around the stage. Chief arbiter Andrei Malchev moved to center stage, raising his hands to ask for silence.
But every move drew applause, and at the end the crowd rose, stomping and shouting, ″Garri 3/8 Garri 3/8″
A beaming Kasparov and a somber Karpov shook hands, and the new champion raised his arms in victory with clenched fists.
Asked how he felt after the match, Kasparov grinned and said ″Otlichno, (excellent.)″ Karpov had no comment.
In an interview Sunday with the official Soviet news agency Tass, Kasparov praised Karpov and said ″it was far from easy to play against him.″
″I should like to point out that Anatoly Karpov fought grandly during the match,″ Tass quoted Kasparov as saying. ″I felt it both morally and physically. He made the most even of unfavorable positions and used all the chances when the position was in his favor. He showed outstanding performance during the match.
″I should also like to point out that in the course of the keen competition during the match I felt big creative potential inside me, and I will do my best to please all the Soviet chess lovers with interesting playing,″ Kasparov said.
He said he first felt he could win the title after game 15 on Oct. 12, which ended in a draw with the score tied at 7.5 points for each player.
But he said that by the end of the 19th match, ″My confidence was somewhat shaken because of increased nervous stress. As a result, I lost hold of much of what I had achieved by that time.
″However, before the final, 24th game I managed to pull myself together. I realized that Karpov would do his utmost to win the game. He showed an excellent performance, and it was far from easy to play against him.″
Mikhail Tal had been the youngest player to hold the world championship when at the age of 24 he efeated fellow Soviet grandmaster Mikhail Botvinnik in 1980.
The final game was the 72nd in the battle for the title. Kasparov and Karpov played a record-shattering 48 games in what came to be known as the first round of their bout halted in February.
Karpov was leading led 5-3, but had let slip an early 5-0 lead and lost the last two games to Kasparov when FIDE president Florencio Campomanes, a close friend of Karpov, stopped the series, saying everyone was exhausted. He ordered a rematch starting in September with a limit of 24 games.
In the 24th game, Karpov sought to retain his title by tying the score 12-12. Kasparov needed at least a draw to finish ahead.
The official prize money for the championship amounted to $740,000, to be divided five-eighths to Kasparov and three-eighths to Karpov.
Karpov became world champion on April 23, 1975 after American chess genius Bobby Fischer refused to defend his world title in a rules dispute.