Here is excerpts from issue ct102 (1250) , Saturday, April 10th
2004. It has two letters about the Ponomariov open letter.
issue is prepared by GM Alexander Baburin; technical editor: R. Marconi
is 15 euro for 3 months. For further details please refer to http://www.chesstoday.net
to the Editor
CT-1248 we published an Open Letter from FIDE World Champion Ruslan
Ponomariov. Here are two replies to that letter:
Ponomariov's letter I would like to state a few things:
Nobody says that he 'cancelled' the match against Kasparov. He however
not sign the
It was most probably just Danailov (everybody's manager) and other
characters who influenced Ponomariov to play with
until he got burned. Now they all pretend to be surprised by the logical
I respect Ponomariov for becoming the K.O. Champion. I don't bother
his place in the Elo list - it's not all that important. But if somebody
one for 20
(twenty!) years like Kasparov, it is like Bobby
6-0 victories against Taimanov and Larsen! Ruslan does not
to realize that. Too bad.
I'm 54 now. I used to be younger and at those times I wanted to be a
myself. But I was not strong enough for that. I only reached the
(it meant the
best 8 then)
Respecting others (elders) does not make anybody smaller. Acting
is a safe way to lose sympathy of the people who did so
for chess as you, Ruslan, must go a long way to catch up!
András Adorján, the Father of
is OK thesis"
here is another, quite lengthy letter. While I don't agree with the
on several points, his views are shared by many chess fans and are
Ponomariov is realizing that no one misses him. FIDE's decision to
the match was completely justified. He simply refused to play the
against Garry Kasparov. If FIDE can default Bobby Fischer, they
can default Ruslan Ponomariov. He is now realizing that
Knockout champions are easily replaced and forgotten. You can easily
a new FIDE champion by holding another grab bag, blitz crazed FIDE
Tournament. True World Champions are neither easily forgotten
easily replaced. Bobby Fischer and Anatoly Karpov are cases in point.
I recall events:
Kasparov signed the contract, Ponomariov did not.
Ponomariov held up the reunification process over
Ponomariov wanted draw odds.
Ponomariov did not want to use standard time controls, 40moves in 2
He wanted 90 minutes and 30 second increments per move.
If Ponomariov wants to defend his title under similar conditions, then he
play in the next FIDE Knockout Tournament.
Ponomariov passed up a great opportunity to play the strongest
in the world for a nice sum of money. Ponomariov would have been
in the next few future world championships. Ponomariov passed
a 'no lose' situation. Ponomariov took unreasonable stances on basic
issues. The first being time control. He did not want to play
standard time controls. True World Championship matches have
played using standard time controls, 40 moves in 2 hours. The
World Champion Mikhail Botvinnik stated, "World
matches are of competitive and creative importance".
why not use the slower standard time controls and allow these matches
be decided by the strongest player playing the strongest chess. This issue
not have been a showstopper. Ponomariov other unreasonable
was that he wanted draw odds, just like Kramnik has with is
against Peter Leko. In order to answer this draw odds question, we
compare the two titles. Kramnik got his title by beating the man who
the man who beat the man. In 2000, Kramnik defeated then World
Garry Kasparov, greatest World Champion ever, in a match by a
of 2 wins, 13 draws, and zero losses. This was truly a great
– Kramnik had climbed the Chess Olympus.
title was won in the knockout tournament, which was
two best players in the world - Kasparov and Kramnik.
title follows rich tradition. It would be unconscionable to give
draw adds against the player who dominated chess for 20
and who defended his title for 15 years in numerous matches. This
should not have been a showstopper either. Ponomariov failed to realize
that a victory over Garry Kasparov would have given some legitimacy to the
Knockout Championship. It would have catapulted Ponomariov to
stardom. It would have increased his marketability for big
matches. If Ponomariov wants to defend his title under the same
he won it, then he should play in the upcoming FIDE Knockout
in Libya in September. Ponomariov wonders why the FIDE
tournaments prize funds are shrinking. This can easily be
How can FIDE hold championships when the top players
play in them? Ex Champion and number one player in the world, Garry
and current World Champion Vladimir Kramnik will not play in the FIDE
Knockout Championship. The FIDE process is not worthy of world
The other reason for poor sponsorship is player like Ponomariov,
make unreasonable demands and cause postponements of chess events.
need to know who will play and when these events will take place.
is not lost for Ponomariov - he is still a young and talented player. He
become a true World Champion some day.
Matt Traynor, New Jersey, USA"