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The Chinese School of Chess by Liu Wenzhe

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The Chinese School of Chess  by Liu Wenzhe  Empty The Chinese School of Chess by Liu Wenzhe

Post  ChessCaissa on Thu Apr 04, 2019 9:39 am

PDF (23.5 mb, black and white cover):

Thanks to the original uploader! sunny

As the first Chinese player to defeat a Western grandmaster, Liu Wenzhe is ideally equipped to chart the dramatic progress of Chinese players over the past 25 years. Here he reveals the unique approach, training methods and secrets of his Chinese School of Chess, based on "The Art of Thinking." Perfect for club and tournament players--and anyone interested in chess history and culture.

Product details
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Batsford (June 30, 2003)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0713487739
ISBN-13: 978-0713487732


"Yhe other day I discovered The Chinese School of Chess by Liu Wenzhe lurking in the games sections. It was published in 2002 and you can buy it for $30 if you’re into spending a lot of money on chess books. I used to, but fortunately kicked the habit a long time ago. But, it’s free to check books out at the library, so I brought it home and must say I enjoyed it.
    Googling the author revealed that the late Liu Wenzhe (October 7, 1940 – September 20, 2011) was an International Master and one of China's top chess trainers. Originally a XiangQi (Chinese chess) player, Wenzhe was one of the first to take a serious interest in "Western" chess which he began playing and studying in the late 1950s. According to Chessmetrics his rating was in the 2300s until 1989 when he was inactive. He apparently resumed play in 2000, but by then he was 59 years old and his rating slipped to the 2100s.
    He was the first Chinese player to defeat a GM (Nikolai Krogius in 1965) and the first to be awarded the title of International Master. He is considered a pioneer of chess in China and a founding father of the Chinese School of Chess.
    He won the Chinese Chess Championship in 1980 and 1982. Two years after the end of the Cultural Revolution and Mao Zedong's death and the fall of the Gang of Four in 1976, China competed in their first Olympiad in Buenos Aires. It was there that Liu Wenzhe played his best known game when he crushed Dutch GM Jan Hein Donner in twenty moves. The game, with notes based on Liu Wenzhe’s annotations, is given below and it’s a lot of fun to play over.
    Like The Soviet School of Chess by Kotov and Yudovich, the book has its share of propaganda telling readers what a swell system of government Communism is as proven by the large number of good chess players it produced. I suppose saying that was required if you wanted to avoid disappearing into the abyss.
    Actually I think it was a function of numbers. When I played in my first junior tournament at the age of 15 or 16, I was one of the youngest players out of 20 or 25 participants. Nowadays you can’t visit a tournament without stepping on a five year old. There was one Hispanic and one girl playing. Then came the Fischer Boom and all of a sudden minority players started showing up. At first they weren’t very good, but as more and more started playing that changed.
    Here in the US we had very few registered players and a thimble full of Masters. In the Soviet Union they had millions of players and a boat load of Masters. I suspect the same thing happened in China. With more than one billion Chinese it should be no surprise that with the help of government supported programs a lot of strong players will be discovered and encouraged.
    The book supposedly reveals the unique approach, training methods and secrets of his Chinese School of Chess based on "The Art of Thinking." According to the introduction, when Botvinnik published his Soviet School of Chess nobody dared challenged the theories postulated by the Soviet School until Liu Wenzhe came along.
    The book is a summary of his training methods and the emphasis is on positional play. Much of his analysis is long...very long...which means it’s most likely filled with mistakes. Think long, think wrong!
    If you’re like me, you’re dying to know what the Chinese method for success is. There isn’t any. Well, not exactly. He does a lot of yammering about the Chinese players’ approach to the middlegame, their flexible thinking, strategic skills, etc. But so did Kotov and Yudovich in their Soviet School of Chess.
    In the Road To Chess Mastery, GM Alex Yermolinsky let the cat out of the bag about the Soviet School. He saw plenty of bad teaching in the Soviet Union. He also wrote, “There were no secret methods of teaching...In my 30 years of tournament experience I have seen a lot of bad players and most of them lived in the Soviet Union.” He also added that his teacher, the celebrated Vladimir Zak, while he had a good eye for talent, couldn’t help players by the time they reached 1800!
    So why was Liu Wenzhe so successful in his training of Xie Jun for her 1991 World Championship match against Maia Chiburdanidze? Simple. For 6 months she was totally immersed in chess. Every day she followed a strict regimen that included eight hours of chess training and even breaks, meal times and bedtimes (10:15pm) were regulated. No diversions, no time with friends, entertainment or movies. Nothing but studying chess!
    All in all, even though he doesn’t reveal any secret plans that will enable those of us who are rating challenged to climb the ladder of success, the book, especially the annotations, was an interesting read."


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