London 1892/Belfast 1892
1892 was a momentous year for chess in Britain, not just for Britain but also for the entire chess world. the first indication of the earthquake to come was a small report in the February 1892 edition of The Chess-Monthly which would have gone largely unobserved. On December 22nd 1891, the executive council of the Britih Chess Association adjourned its meeting until February 5th. The main business of the meeting was to settle the programme for the biennial National Congress. On page 195 of the March 1892 issue, the programme duly appeared. The tournament would begin on Monday, March 7th, entrance fee 2 pounds, 20 moves per hour (clocks to be used), one game every day except Sundays. The importnat rule was that the tournament would be: ''Open only to masters of the BCA, those who have previously played in a Masters Tournament, or those who shall have obtained permission to enter from the committee''. On page 197, the magazine reported: ''Up to the time of our going to press, Lasker, Loman, Jasnogrodsky, Gossip and Fenton, have entered for the Masters Tournament. Herr Lasker has asked permission to play, since he is resident in London and intends to remain in England''. In a decision which was criticised, the committee agreed to accept his entry. This began a sequence of events which set Lasker firmly on the road to the World Championship. Britain's leading players had been avoiding playing Lasker but his clear victory in the BCA tournament led, in just 10 days, to him sitting down to play in an elite tournament against Blackburne, Gunsberg, Mason and Bird. A second clear victory led to a match against Blackburne which Lasker won without losing a game. A great result. The talk of a match between Blackburne and Gunsberg for the Championship of England, to be held in Belfast in September, was quickly amended to include Lasker, only for him to withdraw 2 weeks later in order to accept an offer of an engagement with the Manhattan Chess Club in New York.The London events were reported in many London newspapers - The Times, Evening News and Post, Daily News, Morning Advertiser, The Standard (reprinted in the Evening Standard) and Morning Post, but the Steinitz versus Chigorin match, reduced the games published from the March event. Sadly, 3 games from the March/April tournament were not published completely. The Evening News and Post promised daily reports in its Pink Edition but that appears no longer to exist. The games from Belfast were all published in the local papers. Bird was considerably annoyed by some short draws by Lee, which he believed cost him a higher place. He made his feelings clear in Chess History and Reminiscences, much being repriented here. Read them with some scepticism!
Tony Gillam, April 2008
Tony Gillam, April 2008
|Titel:||London 1892/Belfast 1892|
|Uitgever:||The Chess Player|
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