Persons celebrating an Anniversary in February 2004

We will start our monthly good wishes with Juan Sebastian Morgado, our country's representative for South and Latin America: the International Correspondence Chess Grandmaster from Buenos Aires celebrated his 57th birthday on February 2. A psychologist by profession, he has worked as a chess dealer and publisher since 1981. Appropriately enough chess history belongs to his hobbies. Recently he has also introduced our association to the Spanish-speaking people of South America by a commendable online-article on the foundation of the KWA in Brunswick/Wolfenbüttel; you may read it by using the link on our page Press.

Karel Mokry celebrated his 45th birthday on February 7. Being an International Grandmaster since 1984 he was able to score quite a lot of fine tournament wins in the eighties. In 1991 he founded his chess shop in Bratislava (Slovakia), in 1993, after the splitting of Czechoslovakia, he moved with his family to his home-town Prostejov (Czech Republic). The nice Karel Mokry online chess shop may easily be found via our page Links.

Yuri Lvovich Averbakh looked back on imposing 82 years on February 8. He is world-wide well-known as International Grandmaster, author, International Arbiter and also International Judge of Chess Compositions. Being an outstanding endgame theoretician, his famous standard work on the endgame should be part of each chess library which deserves this name. His importance as opening analyst is emphasized by the variants bearing his name (in the Queen’s Indian and the King’s Indian Defence, also in Spanish). Significant literary contributions were connected with his editorial work on Shakhmaty v SSSR and Shakmatny biuletin. A collection of his games written by himself appeared in 1998 in English: Averbakh’s Selected Games. It proves his versatility that Yuri Averbakh has made a name for himself as a chess historian for many years and has amongst other things enriched the field of research on the origin of chess (on this point see for example his cooperation with the Initiative Group Königstein).

Udo Güldner who turned 27 on the same day shouldn’t be completely unknown in this country as he published just in 2002 an extensive chronicle of “his” chess club: 25 Jahre Schachclub Forchheim. Additionally he is active in chess journalism as the press officer of the chess club Forchheim, of the chess district Mittelfranken-Nord and of the chess region Mittelfranken. His great passion is the local and regional chess history where he does a lot of valuable pioneering work and also publishes regularly in the Bavarian ROCHADE. According to his own expression he is ”a specialist for ”small matters” who will therefore not lose sight of the big whole.”

Harald E. Balló from Offenbach reached his 49th birthday on February 11. He is one of the greatest German collectors and he became known to a large readership as the author of the Schach-Zettel (in Deutsche Schachzeitung/Schach-Report 1994-96 and in Schach 1997/since 2002). Unfortunately, due to his profession as a doctor (oncologist) he often lacks the desired time for the pursuit of his hobby. You may find his many-sided contributions on chess history including the “Schach-Zettel” on his informative web site, which offers apart from further highlights an extensive bibliography of chess literature.

Birthday greetings also go to the Italian city of Turin where Carlo Alberto Pagni has completed his 73rd year on February 13. The professor of neurosurgery has particularly conducted research on the history of correspondence chess matches in the 19th century and has published four books on this subject: Correspondence Chess Matches between Clubs 1823-1899 Volume 1 (1996, 189 + VIII p.), Volume 2 (1996, 100 p.) and Volume 3 (1997, 42 p.); as well as For the History of Correspondence Chess in Italy. The Matches between Clubs in the XIXth Century and at the beginning of the XXth (s. a., 61 p.). Furthermore the booklet Alexander Alexandrovic Alechine ed il Giuoco per corrispondenza (1995, 34 p.) and Alexander Alekin Giuocare per corrispondenza per diventare Campioni del Mondo (1999, 67 p.).

The Russian-Irish chess grandmaster Alexander Baburin will be the next one on our birthday list, he turned 37 on February 19. He is particularly well-known among collectors for his regular Internet auctions of chess books which he runs via his homepage. There you will also find quite a lot about himself (namely in Alexander’s Profile). He has entered new ground with the publication of the daily Internet newspaper Chess Today whose subscription he offers at a separate website. Apart from regular excursions to the tournament arena Alexander Baburin works as a chess coach and also writes for many chess magazines. His major book Winning Pawn Structures (London 1998) surely adorns the shelves of many chess friends.

Our secretary Michael Negele who looked back on 47 years on February 22 may be called with complete justification a main support to our association: his previous tremendous e-mail output should have reached record levels. Being employed as a chemist in the pharmaceutical branch of the Bayer AG, his free time is decisively determined by chess: by extensive collecting (including chess literature from Eastern Europe) he has established a fine library which is steadily increased by additional buying and by a brisk barter. Moreover he is a strong club player (Elo 2200) playing a successful part not only in club matches and championships but also in Open Tournaments: so he considers the last year’s Open A of the Dortmund Sparkassen Chess Meeting to be his greatest success, he as the meanwhile leading could even two times take a seat in the circle of the greats on the stage of the theatre hall (documented in the club magazine Tschaturanga of the Chess Club Bayer Leverkusen e.V. which he enriches with his contributions as well). Last but not least we have to emphasize therefore Michael’s talents as a chess author, for instance his articles in Kaissiber [especially Caro-Kann: Goldman-Variante (in Kaissiber 15) and Das Verbrechen des Mr. H(e)yde (in Kaissiber 18)] belong to the best ones this high-class magazine has ever produced.
Our greetings go to Wuppertal: ad multos annos!

We would like to close our series with greetings to far Singapore: Olimpiu G. Urcan celebrated his 27th birthday on February 28. He has made the chess history of Singapore his specialty and has already published several online-articles (Alekhine's Presence in Singapore 1933 – in ChessCafe/The Skittles Room; Boris Kostich in Singapore 1925 – at the website of the Singapore Chess Federation; in EX-Services will appear (Febr. 2004): Chess Activities at Changi Camp 1942-45). Two contributions appeared just now “on paper” in Fiala’s QCH (no. 8): One more of Capablanca’s Losses (p. 421) und Alekhine’s Chess Exhibitions in Singapore: Febr. 25/26 and March 27, 1933 (p. 386-396). His current book project is near to completion: Chess in Old Singapore. The Life and Times of E.E. Colman 1878-1964. At the moment Olimpiu Urcan is busy applying for a Permanent Resident Status in Singapore. Good luck for this undertaking!

Congratulations to all!