Through the use of Skype and a special online chess program, Gabriel Purdy, manager and instructor of the Karpov Chess School in Lindsborg, played an international match against a group of eight students from Demidov University in Yaroslavl, Russia, Thursday.
Purdy, who won the state title last year, said this was the first match he’s played cross-continent. Marck Cobb, president of the International Chess Institute of the Midwest and coordinator of the event, said the Russian students wanted to try more matches against international students — especially against other college-age students.
“I think that’s one of the important things of chess — communicating across cultures,” Cobb said.
Purdy played on white, while the Russians played black. Purdy opened the match with a queen’s gambit; a standard opening for a chess match which involves moving both the king’s pawn and the queen’s pawn two spaces forward in the first two turns, allowing for early movement of the queen. Some moves in, Purdy was caught in a trap set by the Russian students, keeping him at a one-piece disadvantage for the remainder of the match. Eventually, Purdy conceded to the Russian students with one second left on his clock.
Purdy said the lack of time toward the end left him little time to formalize a strategy, but expressed his eagerness for a rematch.
“What threw me off was time control,” Purdy said. “I think I could beat them in a rematch.”
Purdy reviewed the game with the students after the match, and indicated the critical points.
Cobb described the moment as “historical,” and expressed his desire to continue to host games with international students. Cobb also expressed his desire to involve more local students and give them the opportunity to act with other cultures through the sport of chess.
The Anatoly Karpov Chess School is at 106 S. Main St. in Lindsborg. If you would like to learn more about the Anatoly Karpov Chess School, or about upcoming events, you can contact Marck Cobb at 785-227-2244 or 620-654-3986.