The Queen’s Gambit
The Queen’s Gambit is a fictional story–a very popular 7 part miniseries produced by Netflix.
The story follows the life of an orphan chess prodigy, Beth Harmon, played by actress Anya Taylor-Joy, during her quest to become the world’s greatest chess player while struggling with emotional issues and drug & alcohol dependency. The story begins in the mid-1950s and proceeds into the 1960s.
The actual chess games interspersed in the story are extremely well done with realististic positions from games shown just long enough and at the right time in the drama to move the story forward without being tedious and a distraction.
Chess aficionados will not be disappointed!
Today’s 2021 Women’s World Chess Champion, China’s Ju Wenjun, comments on “The Queen’s Gambit,” the film.
China’s Ju Wenjun
The 2020 Women’s World Chess Champion
Born January 31, 1991
29 years old
Classical Chess Rating 2584
Although Ju Wenjun’s life’s path to the top is different than the character Beth Harmon, Ju can still identify with her.
“I know how popular the Netflix show The Queen’s Gambit is–and it’s great to see a show about chess, especially female players. The character Beth Harmon is smart and she is an intelligent player. She’s charming to watch when she’s at the board.
“I like that the name The Queen’s Gambit speaks to the famous chess opening and the fact that it’s about a female player.
“Beth and I both studied chess when we were very young and playing was our own choice—we played because we wanted to play. And, of course, we both want to win. There is a sense from the show that Beth is a passionate woman, with a passion for chess.
“Many more chess players are male than female, so it’s good to have a film that can encourage women to play chess. Beth could be a good role model for women. Whether you’re male or female, young or old, you can play chess—it’s not limiting.
“I love to think that I could encourage even more young female chess players, and I hope that many more young people begin to play and love the game.”
The 2020 Women’s World Chess Championship, a 12-game match between challenger Aleksandra Goryachkina and world champion Ju Wenjun, began in Shanghai, China on January 4, 2020 for the first 6 games–and moved to Vladivostok, Russia on January 15 for the second 6 games.
After two weeks and 12 games of fierce Classical Chess competition that ended in a tie, China’s Ju Wenjun retained the Women’s World Chess Champion title after winning the Tiebreak playoff against the challenger, Russia’s Aleksandra Goryachkina.
Russia’s Aleksandra Goryachkina
Born September 28, 1998
22 years old
Classical Chess Rating 2578
In May 2019, Aleksandra was only 20 years old at the time and the youngest and lowest-seeded of the world’s Top 8 women chess players competing. She won the Candidates Tournament and earned the opportunity to challenge China’s Ju Wenjun for the upcoming 2020 Women’s World Chess Championship!
She is a Grandmaster and two-time Russian Women’s Chess Champion. She also twice won the Girls Under-20 World Chess Championship.
The Path to a Chess Championship Can Begin Here!
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“Knight Checkmates King!”
Checkmate! Ideas For Students is a workbook for beginning and intermediate students. Checkmate! covers the tactics used in checkmate attacks with clear explanations, diagrams and arrows to pinpoint the key features.
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“Profiles Face-Off in King’s Shadow”
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