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is chess in the Olympics

  There is currently no chess in the Olympiad. The Chess Olympiad is a chess competition officially organized by FIDE since 1927 and takes place in even-numbered years. Before World War II the event was occasionally held every year. There was also an unofficial Chess Olympiad series that ended in 1976. Although chess is covered in the sports sections of many newspapers around the world, it is not one of the recognized sports in the Olympic Games. However, FIDE is now a member of the International Olympic Committee and follows its rules. This means that chess could one day become an Olympic event, although most knowledgeable observers say this is unlikely. The World Chess Championship is a competition held annually by the international chess organization FIDE to determine the World Champion of chess. Both men and women are eligible to participate in this championship. The World Champion does not have to be the player with the highest Elo rating: the 2006-2007 World Champion, Vladimir Kr

My Journey From 1400-2400 On Chesscube

Courtesy: freepik
I started playing online chess about four years ago and back then, I only knew how to move the pieces and how to castle. I had no awareness of tactics much less strategic concepts in chess. But I still tried to play chess and to learn whatever I can about it.

It was definitely frustrating at first since I would usually lose against opponents of the same level, which was about 1400-1500 at that time, and the reason for my losses were usually tactical blunders, not even subtle moves with deep underlying strategy behind them but just obvious mistakes like hanging pieces, forks, and pins. I guess many people start out the same way too even masters but I persevered in playing despite my losses.

Not to say that online chess is a good indicator of what your real strength and understanding of chess would be but if you truly have a good grasp of the fundamentals, it would be clear that you can survive against opponents of the same level as you unless they are masters who just started playing online but the chances of that happening are slim since most of them climb up the ladder fairly quickly anyway. So for amateurs like me, the idea was to play as much as I can both online and on the board.

For several months, my rating on Chesscube, ranged between 1400-1600 and I would be okay with that since I was able to play chess for free (the concept of paying up cubits for a "free" game was non-existent back then, anyone could literally play for free without having to be a VIP; of course, nowadays, a "free" game on Chesscube requires regular members to pay up a 5-cubit game fee which is why I occasionally play at or but I like the concept of winning cubits whenever I win a game so I still play at Chesscube).

Then I noticed that I was gradually getting better, even reaching 1800 and 1900 at some point which gave me hope that I could still become good at this game. Of course, reality usually hits you hard at the most unexpected times and that moment was when Chesscube started demanding game fees so I do not have the luxury of losing games anymore because I would lose cubits and not be able to play. Anybody who has ever played any game knows that when you start to win, you become confident, and when you become confident, you become reckless and that was what happened to me.

When I started winning against tougher opponents, I thought I was invincible. So I upped my ante, and started playing for more cubits. Eventually I lost all my cubits to players who were way better than me and I became disheartened. But I pressed on and after a year of playing, I stumbled upon Youtube channels like ChessNetwork, kingscrusher, and MatoJelic. By watching their streams, I started to pick up chess concepts that mattered most for beginners.

Applying what I learned and at times trying to imitate their styles of play, I saw some improvement in my games. I even got to a moment when I joined my very first rated tournament. I thought that what my arsenal of chess knowledge and wit was enough but alas, I was yet again brought down to the ground and I realized that I needed more improvement if I wanted to go toe to toe with other serious players.

It has been a long time since I played my last rated tournament and I have only been playing chess online since then. I haven't studied chess in a while but listening to the advice of masters such as John Bartholomew, I take it upon myself to just keep playing chess and getting better at it in incremental steps. Right now, I do not think I can improve by much since I have my studies to attend to but given time and practice, I think I might be able to reach at least 2000 if I can get my head into it.

Anyway, I wrote this article to hopefully encourage some beginners out there who might be stuck in a rut. There is hope for us all if we put the effort into it. The amount of improvement that we will see in the quality of our games is really proportional to the amount of time and effort we take to play, study, and analyze games. There is no shortcut to becoming better, not at chess, not at anything in life unless you are a super genius who can easily grasp and recall concepts at will. But for us regular mortals, the road to success will be a rough one, it might even be a long, winding one but it is possible to get there.


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