All posts by James D Pratt

Based in Hampshire, TCP has been going since the K v K match at Baguio over thirty years ago. Publications include 'The Modest Master of Morwenstow', the chess biog of PH Clarke, 'Loss of Time & Space', a study of 2 ... Ng8 in the Alekhine and 'Check Press for Details: Thirty Years of Chess Book Reviews' in which I give musings about the great world of chess literature scattered almost back to my schooldays. I have been variously columnist for The Basingstoke Gazette and also The Surrey and Hants Border Times & News. In 1980 I was Britain's youngest columnist. I have been editor of Basman "Audio Chess News" and contributed to various periodicals over the years such as Newsflash!, Correspondence Chess, 'Chess Circuit', Chess Moves. I played in congresses 1974-1999 including twenty-three British Championships. My best results were at about BCF 150, I suppose 1800 Elo, nothing special. TCP library is approaching a thousand titles. My chatboard at Yahoo! has over 135 members. Started in July 2003, I work on it daily. Well supported, even in the US, we even have a Grandmaster member. Well, he's a nice chap. JAMES PRATT was born in 1959 and has been interested in chess since he was eight, the flames being fanned by the Spassky v Fischer match. Currently a Laundry Technician, he was worked for several charities here in the UK. Humour and history are his things with English politics also featuring strongly!

Together with the Candidates : Budapest 1950 to Berlin 2018

Together with the Candidates
Together with the Candidates

This is a relaxed and almost carefree publication written by a grandmaster little known to me, though I imagine readers of BCN will not confuse him with Gennady Kuzmin (b.1946). Alexey was, in fact, born in 1963 and is sensibly introduced on the back of this weighty paperback, a recent arrival from Thinkers Publishing who are, in turn, a new publisher in the realm of the Royal Game.

GM Alexey Kuzmin
GM Alexey Kuzmin

The subject matter is the Candidates tournaments and matches – almost all staged within FIDE – and bears the sub-title ‘Budapest 1950 to Berlin 2018’.

Certainly the book, which features test positions, crosstables, black and white photos, no index, a very artistic aqua marine cover, six chapters, a key to symbols and, of course, well annotated games, should be of interest to many players. Not all the games are from candidates matches or tournaments but this surely doesn’t matter. And I did say it has relaxed in approach.

Younger readers will, I hope, enjoy a bit of history as the qualification history is relived and the old names, so many champions from the time of Botvinnik onwards, are resurrected respectfully and with relish.

I spotted a few mistakes. The numbering of the Tests, which surely might have been sequential, is the same in each chapter. Jussupow called himself Yusupov as long ago as 1986 and some of the photos are so dark that they are hardly worthwhile.

I would like to like this book but it is a bit of a mix, a hotch-potch, at least in my opinion. Certainly it is pleasantly free from misprints and original in concept.

James Pratt
James Pratt

James Pratt, Basingstoke, April 2019

Book Details :

  • Papercover : 280 pages
  • Publisher: Thinkers Publishing, (1st January 2019)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9492510359
  • ISBN-13: 978-9492510358
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 2.5 x 24.1 cm

Official web site of  http://www.thinkerspublishing.com

Together with the Candidates : Budapest 1950 to Berlin 2018
Together with the Candidates : Budapest 1950 to Berlin 2018