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Chess masters different training regimes


Two Russian chess heavyweights are to meet once again in battle. One is training against a computer, the other a human; what will happen?

The chess world has been set alight this week by the rejuvination of one of its greatest ever rivalries when Garry Kasparov takes on his former arch rival Anatoly Karpov in Valencia.

It’s been a quarter of a century since the two first met on the board of battle in Moscow, in a match that lasted over five months and had to be abandoned as a draw over fears for the players’ health.

Kasparov went on to win the rematch, taking the world title and defending it successfully again a year later.
Kasparov, now aged 46, has been preparing for the clash by training in Norway with teenage prodigy Magnus Carlsen.

Meanwhile, Karpov, 58, has been sparring with a computer and a group of grandmasters from a base on the Spanish coast.

While the exact details of their training regimes are being kept closely guarded, the difference in approaches will be interesting to watch as the clash progresses, with the older Karpov interestingly opting to embrace technological training methods.

Kasparov was beaten by the IBM computer Big Blue in 1997 after vanquishing an earlier version of the machine the previous year. However, he accused IBM of cheating and demanded a rematch, though the corporation refused and dismantled the machine.

In their heyday, the pair of Russian Grand Masters polarised opinion in Russia, with Karpov associated with the oppressive Soviet state, while Kasparov, the young whipper-snapper, idealised by the masses.

The five-day match in Valencia will be held this week, and will be played under strict time limits.

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