Joey Villar, The Philippine Star
Posted at 11/19/2013 9:02 AM | Updated as of 11/19/2013 9:02 AM
MANILA, Philippines – Former world chess champion Garry Kasparov, considered as one of the brilliant and greatest champions of all time, arrives today for a one-day stop as part of his worldwide tour to step up his bid for the FIDE (International Chess Federation) presidency in next year’s election.
“He (Kasparov) will meet with NCFP officials tomorrow (today),” National Chess Federation of the Philippines executive director and Grandmaster Jayson Gonzales told The STAR yesterday.
“His one-day Phl visit is part of his Asian region tour to make known his bid for the 2014 FIDE presidency,” he added.
Kasparov’s announcement came on the same day incumbent FIDE president Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, a former head of Kalmykia or a former Soviet Union republic, made known his plan to seek a sixth straight term as head of the world chess body.
Interestingly, Filipino Casto “Toti” Abundo, the current Asian Chess Federation deputy vice president, will run for secretary-general under the Ilyumzhinov’s ticket and against incumbent FIDE sec-gen Ignatius Leong of Singapore, who is running under Kasparov’s group.
Kasparov, 50, unseated compatriot Anatoly Karpov to become world champion in 1985, a title he held until 1993 when he decided to bolt FIDE to form his own world championship where he reigned until 2000.
Kasparov is hoping to achieve what fellow world champion Karpov had failed after the latter lost to Ilyumzhinov in the last FIDE polls three years ago.
Curiously, Kasparov will run for a group he left in 1993 by creating a parallel organization he named Professional Chess Association to rival FIDE.
After barging into the FIDE scene in 1995, Ilyumzhinov launched a campaign to re-unite all groups and succeeded in 2006 when a reunification title match was organized in Elista, Kalmykia. (Kasparov supported Kirsan Ilyumzhinov for FIDE Presidency, and was solely responsible for getting him elected more than a decade ago)