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Carlsen, Kidneys, and You

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From the Internet Chess Club, a chance to do good and to play against Mighty Magnus himself! [A bit tardy, I know. I've been in the combined throes building and setting up a new computer, having family in town, and media response work on the Russia-Georgia conflict. - Heh, in answer to Charles, yes, I did indeed tell a Fox News Radio twit "I'm surprised you're surprised" on the air yesterday. In a related story, Charles has now admitted to listening to Fox News Radio. Hey, at least it was a break in their continuous "missing white girl!" stories.]

Serbian GM Dusan Popovic just had an operation to deal with double kidney failure. His friend Magnus Carlsen is giving an online simul to raise funds to pay for the operation. I'll be hurting the cause by doing my ICC Chess.FM radio shtick during the games as long as my laptop holds out. Come on by, should be fun.


Do You Want To Play Magnus Carlsen on the Internet Chess Club (ICC - www.chessclub.com) and help raise money for a good cause? You may remember last year that World Champion Vishy Anand raised $10,000 on ICC for a charity that was close to his heart? Well, this year young rising Norwegian star Magnus Carlsen has magnanimously agreed to do a similar fundraising simul at ICC, with 100% of the monies raised going to help a young fellow grandmaster in need of urgent medical treatment.

Serbian GM Dusan Popovic tragically took ill earlier this year and diagnosed with chronic kidney failure and now is in urgent need of a transplant. You can read more about Dusan's plight here at http://www.chessdom.com/dusan-popovic.

Magnus Carlsen will be giving of his time to help a fellow player in his hour of need.by hosting a simultaneous exhibition on ICC on Monday, August 11, with matches beginning at 2pm U.S. EDT (7pm in the U.K. and 8pm in Norway and Central Europe (CET)).

You can PLAY! You can HELP!

Internet Chess Club is offering on eBay 18 seats to play in the simultaneous exhibition with Super-Grandmaster Carlsen. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to play whom many believe will soon become the world #1 and world champion - and at the same time help towards a good cause. Twelve seats will be sold in a Dutch Auction, and six seats are offered in this listing at a fixed price. To view or bid for a seat in the Dutch Auction, where as of going to press the top bid is $35, please go (and bid!) to: http://search.ebay.com/_W0QQsassZinternetchessclub

The six people who donate $500 each for these special fixed-price seats (three of which have already gone!) will receive a two-year subscription (or two-year renewal) to ICC; a downloadable copy of the latest version of Junior, the three-time world champion chess engine; and a one-year subscription to the world's leading chess magazine, New In Chess—for a total value of about $250!

Your winning bid will earn a seat to play Super Grandmaster Magnus Carlsen on ICC. The time control will be 90 minutes with a 5 second increment. Seats will only be available to players under the rating of 2200 and they will play with the black pieces.

Notes: All payments must be made by PayPal or credit card within 24 hours of the close of the auction in order to allow time to properly prepare for this event. You need not be an ICC member in order to participate; you will receive instructions via email upon payment.

ICC members can also pay a modest sum of 5 chekels (or donate more to the cause) to play in two online qualifiers (Saturday, 9 August, 5pm ET and Sunday, 10 August, 4pm ET) with six seats up for grabs - the top two from each qualifier, plus the two players with the highest accumulated scores playing both qualifiers winning through to play in the Magnus Carlsen Simultaneous. To play, a 5 chekel donation "help chekels" can be donated with: "c-offer Donation 5 for tourney" on ICC. You can also send $5 USD donation to the cause via paypal, to ICCchessclub.com. For more information, please see http://www.chessclub.com/groups/DusanFund.

Please remember that ALL 100% of the proceeds raised will go directly to GM Dusan Popovic's medical fund for his kidney transplant - please give generously to his cause.

The Magnus Carlsen Simultaneous takes place Monday, August 11th with matches beginning at 2pm U.S. Eastern Daylight Time (7pm in the U.K. (BST) and 8pm in Norway and central Europe (CET)).

John Henderson
Director of Marketing, ICC
+1 (847) 347-9593

World Champ Anand chipped in his support and $750. The Chessdom link above has info for sending in cash donations.

Message of support (and donation of $750!) from World Champion Viswanathan Anand:

I was really saddened when I first heard of GM Dusan Popovic's plight. At such a young age, he has to confront a serious health condition that needs a lot of courage and persistence to combat. I wish him all the best. As a chessplayer, we all know what it is to fight. I am sure he will use these fighting skills he would have honed over the chessboard.

While I know Dusan will be receiving unstinting support from his family and friends, I congratulate Magnus Carlsen in stepping forward in his hour of need with his spontaneous and magnanimous gesture to play on the Internet Chess Club to help the cause.

It is also nice to see the next generation coming together for a cause that is far greater than the game itself. It is, as Dusan himself states, to be a "game of life" and I am sure the whole chess community will come together as one to participate and contribute to the fundraising efforts on ICC. For my part, I personally pledge $750 to the fund and urge everyone to contribute what they can on the day.

My prayers, thoughts and best wishes are with Dusan and his family during this time and I am sure, like me, the chess community would all wish to see his return to active duty at the chessboard as quickly as possible.

Viswanathan Anand.


Were you on FOX radio Sunday? I didn't pay attention fast enough but i though I heard your name when they were talking about Russia. Did you tell that woman host you were suprised that she was suprised when she said the fighting was unexpected? Funny if it was you.

Coming up this Christmas:

"A Christmas Carol", featuring Vishy Anand as Ebenezer Scrooge.

It is a bit of a late warning with this simul thing. And it would probably make more sense to hold it on a weekend rather than Monday.

I don't know which is worse: admitting to listening to Fox News Radio or admitting to being on Fox News Radio :)

Larry your comment is extremely immature and uncalled for.

How much did you donate?

It is very easy to trash talk the achievers, very difficult to 'become' an Anand or Kramnik, very easy to comment upon how others could have done better, very difficult to demonstrate by example. So Larry, did you do the easy thing or the difficult thing?

$750 is around 31k in Indian rupees, a decent sum! Perhaps Popovic should think of becoming a "medical tourist" to India, it is a growing trend nowadays.

Has anyone had a closer look at the game Magnus lost? I smell a rat.

It certainly looked a suspicious game to me. On the other hand, if someone was willing to outbid everyone else for a seat at this particular simul and then have Rybka play, is that so bad? I don't think the loss does any harm to Carlsen's reputation as a player, and more money goes to Popovic's care (by the difference between the winning bid and the next highest).

Maybe if the winner cheated, it was done as a silent protest against the sub-2200 rule. Does a master's (or even an FM's or IM's) money buy less than kidney than an amateur's?

I've noticed the elite more often resorting to such rating restrictions when giving charity simuls, at least. Kasparov limited his last charity simul 9which I think occurred after his 2005 retirement) to under-2200 FIDE, and I think Anand did too.

Mig, am I missing some justification for imposing rating ceilings in a simul, beyond the superficially obvious reason - pure cowardice?

Mig, how could you not resurrect the infamous "kidneys" tag from the Kramnik-Topalov match for this item?

I don't understand the mentality behind computer cheating on the internet, if not for financial gain.
Someone who needs to impress fellow chess players in search of recognition is a verrrrrrry sad person in need of psychological assistance. I've seen 1200 players cheating their way to being 1800. What are these guys thinking? Who the heck cares if you are 1800?? At least cheat to GM level....

I severely doubt if there were any cheating going on in the game Carlsen lost. His opponent, Hans-Joachim Hofstetter (who paid a fixed-price seat on eBay, and was eligible to play as he has a current 2196 FIDE rating but doesn't play much OTB at all these days) is a well-known correspondence GM.

Magnus fell into a whole world of woes in the "Dangerous Dilworth" variation by falling for just about every trick in the book allowing black an automatic attack - afterwards, he just said he "Handled the opening badly." I would say at least up to move 30 it was all standard Dilworth tricks - the bishop ending a pawn up thereafter wasn't all that difficult for the correspondence GM to convert.

I certainly remember Dilworth himself showing me something similar to this up to and about move 24-25 from his analysis back in 1980 - and his original analysis was from the 1940s and 1950s before computers!

But being a correspondence GM is all about cheating with computers

And as I said before, most of the tricks in the Dilworth Carlsen fell into were analyzed by Dilworth himself back in the 1940s and 1950s before computers! You can't blame Hofstetter for Carlsen falling into all the tricks and traps by not knowing what he was getting himself into.

Thanks for the clarification, Mr Henderson! I had no idea the winner was a correspondence GM.

I apologise sincerely for my immature comment. I am sure the "World Champion" donated a reasonable part of his average monthly earnings. I forgot to add the value of his prayers wich make my donation much smaller.


I seriously doubt that you are able to tell what is easy and what is difficult.

Does this mean we are not friends any more? Come on Larry, don't be sore.

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    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on August 11, 2008 1:19 AM.

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