After playing very little during the last few years I’ve been preparing a return to competitive chess. I have quite missed the excitement and meanwhile it looks as if my son will soon be holding his own in adult competition. So I think we’ll probably be playing in some tournaments together.
In my case I don’t think it will be hard to get back into it, first of all because I work on chess with students on a daily basis. Preparing for competition requires rather more than this because studying chess in one’s armchair does not involve the tension of an actual tournament. So I’ve started playing some games on the internet and have a few weekend tournaments planned.
How far can I get with this endeavour? Well it looks like repeating my ever so brief sojourn into the top 100 may be rather difficult when you consider the general rise in standards (at least of opening preparation) and look at the years in which the players who now reside there were born. Nigel Short is now the oldest, some 5 years younger than I am.
There again I really don’t think that’s the point. The battle in chess is really against ourselves and our ongoing attempts at self improvement (or delaying decay!). And competitive chess offers a quantifiable insight into how well our minds are working.