Chess Grandmaster to demonstrate skill

Dust off your rooks and bishops.

English chess Grandmaster Nigel Short, who lost to Garry Kasparov in the 1993 World Chess Championships, will visit Cayman and take part in a few different challenges next week.

Mr. Short, who achieved his high rank at the age of 19, will participate in a Grandmaster Corporate Challenge at the Kimpton Seafire resort on Monday, and will play against 30 Cayman students on Tuesday. Enterprising adults can play against Mr. Short at the corporate challenge fundraiser at the Kimpton for a fee of $500.

Mr. Short, who will turn 52 on June 1, is still ranked in the World Chess Federation’s top 60 players. The native of Lancashire first achieved prominence in 1977 when he became the youngest-ever qualifier in the British Chess Championship just three days before his 12th birthday.

He became the youngest International Master in chess history in 1980 and finished second in the World Junior Championships that year. Mr. Short lost to Mr. Kasparov on that occasion, and the two adversaries would meet again 13 years later in the World Chess Championships in London.

Mr. Short, a three-time winner of the British Chess Championship, will bring his expertise to Cayman in an effort to boost interest in the game. Proceeds of the Grandmaster Corporate Challenge will benefit the local Chess in Schools program, and he will take a more hands-on approach one day later.

The grandmaster will play against 30 children Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. at the George Town Public Library. The Cayman Chess Club held a successful pilot program and will now teach a chess curriculum in all Cayman Islands government schools.

Places are still available for the Grandmaster Corporate Challenge. Registration deadline is Friday, May 26. Those interested can email [email protected], or call Shaun Tracey at 525-5862 or Carlo Lee at 924-6246.

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  1. Just as a matter of emphasis, Grandmaster Short has come to the Cayman Islands to promote and fundraise for the Chess in Schools programme, which will teach this strategy game to all government school pupils as they pass through the education system. The schools programme will start in September in all government schools, following a successful pilot in George Town and West Bay primary schools.