Extensive Interview with Webster University Captain GM Le Quang Liem

Susan Polgar, Le Quang Liem, Vasif Durarbayli, Ashwin Jayaram at Sohn Conference

Interview with Le Quang Liem
— by Irene Sukandar in General, 01/12/2017

Interview with Le Quang Liem – Beyond Chess

After finishing my graduate school a month ago, I could really relate how hard it was to keep competing professionally while maintaining my school’s grade. But for Le Quang Liem, it is as if ain’t no mountain high enough. Since summer 2011, Liem has joined the 2700 group and showed relatively stable performance in the elite level despite being a full-time student at Webster University, USA under Susan Polgar Chess Institute for Chess Excellence (SPICE) program. Personally speaking, Liem also made a respectful role model for his teammates at Webster University. When all these features on and off the board are being checked,  it is almost impossible to have a second thought for having him for my first interview post here.

Hi Liem, Happy New Year! Please do tell us how you spent your New Year’s Eve
Happy New Year! After the Pan American Intercollegiate Chess Championship which ended in New Orleans, LA on December 30th, I immediately took a flight the following morning to Vietnam to visit my family. Therefore, I celebrated my New Year’s Eve on the plane.

Any resolutions for 2017 that you want to share us?
Establish a healthier lifestyle, get in shape physically and mentally to prepare for the exciting challenges in 2017.

Besides being a chess professional, what else do you do in the meantime?
I am also a senior at Webster University. I expect to graduate in May 2017 with double degrees: Bachelor of Science in Finance and Bachelor of Arts in Management. Being a full-time student and a chess professional at the same time requires a huge amount of time and effort. I am happy that I have so far excelled in both fields.

The Pan American Chess Championship in New Orleans last month was won by 2 teams from Webster University, as a captain for Webster A, how did you see your personal and team performances there? What could have been better?
All the Webster teams performed incredibly well, particularly the A- and B- teams. I am proud to say that all team members had given their best effort before and during the tournament, and our team result probably exceeded everyone’s expectations. As for my personal performance, I feel that I could have done much better than 2 wins and 4 draws. I was never in any danger of losing, but I also did not manage to capitalize on all the opportunities I had. This is certainly an area I should improve for future tournaments.

What are your insights on Carlsen-Karjakin match in November 2016? Do you think FIDE should amend the tie-break rule in the World Match Championships?
This match had some interesting moments, but for the most parts both players were overcautious. From an audience perspective, I can understand the desire for more exciting chess, and the reluctance to see the match being decided in rapid games. I have not given much thought to the tie-break rules of the World Championship Matches, but my impression is that FIDE should change the format in a way that makes chess more marketable while retaining the traditional values of the World Championship title.

Full interview here: http://beyond-chess.com/interview-le-quang-liem/

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