From the Editor's Desk
The year 2020 will probably be known in history for the Corona virus pandemic (Covid-19) which has affected the whole world destroying millions of lives and still continues to torment with new variants emerging every day. While the exact toll is debatable, a rough estimate till Jan 2021 shows 100 million cases with death of nearly 2.3 million, a fatality rate of about 2.2%. The top-5 worst affected countries are US, India, Brazil, UK and Russia. With the arrival of vaccines made by major pharma companies such as Pfizer-BioNTech, Covishield by Oxford Astra Zeneca (produced by Serum Institute, Pune), Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin, China’s Sinopharm/Sinovac, Russia’s Sputnik V and US Moderna vaccine among a host of others, it is predicted by medical experts that by mid-year we might have some relief from this deadly pandemic. In a world more connected than ever before, social distancing, cleanliness and wearing masks are the only option to contain the spread of this pandemic at the moment.
One of the major consequences for the chess world has been the interruption of the World Chess Candidates tournament interrupted last year. It was compensated to some extend by several online Rapid/Blitz tournaments.
The Editor has provided a brief write up on the exciting Tata Steel Masters tournament 2021 which concluded on 31 January 2021. A rank outsider, sub-2700 ELO GM Jorden Von Foreest created history by winning it ahead of current World no. 1, 2 and the likely heir apparent, Alireza Firouzja.
This edition of the Bulletin has an interesting article by Dr. Chatterjee on the famous “Alekhine's Gun” theme.
Mohan Turaga has once again done a remarkable job by annotating exhaustively 32 games for our readers. A special thanks to Anuj Gupta for providing notes to his games.
Young college student, Tanmay Srinath is featured in this edition’s “Auto-chess-o-graphy”.
Sailesh Chandra's article “Think Like an Engine” (the first of a multi-part series) might help everyone to better understand the Evaluation Function before playing the next move in a game.
As usual, looking forward to your comments and suggestions for improvement on the AICCF WhatsApp group or by Email.