"Endgame" is a book recapping the 1993 PCA World Chess Championship
in which Garry Kasparov
and Nigel Short
competed against each other. The book was written by Dominic Lawson
, a member of Nigel Short
's "chess training camp
". The book takes an in depth look at the psychology of the chess match (the actual championship is actually spread over many games, not just one) through Nigel Short's view. There is also a large conflict
(Fédération Internationale des Echècs
) and Kasparov before the match actually beings, which results in Short and Kasparov getting together and creating an organization called the Professional Chess Association
. So the end result was a now hellish situation with two different chess organizations having world champions (PCA ended up disbanding, but Kasparov still disliked FIDE, so the 2000 chess championships were held outside of FIDE again. (Read: World Chess Championship
)). This is supposed to be corrected by year 2005.
Nigel Short was born in England deemed a chess prodigy at age eleven. He was considered destined to reclaim the World Chess Champion title from Russia; he was considered the strongest western power since Bobby Fischer by many. He also went through a period when he didn't enjoy chess, and just wanted to listen to music and live a normal teenage life.
But it's hard to live a normal teenage life when you have beaten Kasparov before age 17, Russia's most hopeful young chess player.
After Short beat Kasparov in a match during his youth, Kasparov dominated the rest of the matches they had. Going into the world championship match, Short had not beaten Kasparov in his adult life. This, coupled with the belief in the chess world that Kasparov could simply not be beaten created a huge hurtle for Short. Short went through eight weeks of training for the event, with two assistants, one computer with a massive opening database. He spent this time memorizing countless opening variations, middle game strategies for specific types of structures, and eventually lifting weights to build up stamina. Chess at those levels takes a lot out of you, not only mentally, but physically as well.
After long months of preparation the match was ready to begin. A 20 game match for the title of World Chess Champion. At this level in chess, not many games are won, but rather drawn. So if anybody can pull out a win in the world championships, it really proves that they are truly above the rest. It was obvious as the match went on, inside the Short camp and amongst the media and chess world, that this was the case, Kasparov simply dominated Short. By the time Short finally beat Kasparov in a game (finally getting rid of a curse that had plagued him all of his adult life), 15 games had already been played, with Kasparov winning five of those, the rest being drawn. It was too late for a comeback, Short conceded mentally.
So after all the conflict and emotion, the match was over. The book ends on this, Short strumming his guitar while singing:
"It's been a long... lonely road."