"All serious conversations gravitate towards philosophy."
-Ernest Dimnet

Kasparov's chess philosophy and style

Kasparov acknowledges the influence of Mikhail Botvinnik when talking about his chess philosophy

"My chess philosophy has largely been developed under the influence of Ex-World Champion Mikhail Moiseevich Botvinnik. 

I am sure that the five years I spent at Botvinnik's school (1973-1978) played a decisive role in my formation as a chess player and determined the path of my subsequent improvement." Kasparov wrote in Test of Time

Mikhail Botvinnik

Kasparov places emphasis on the importance of constant analytical work, in particular the thorough analysis of one's own games. 

Kasparov also works tirelessly in his preparations to ensure that his opening knowledge and endgame knowledge is second to none. He is a keen user of chess database technology, and was the first top grandmaster to trial run ChessBase.

Kasparov's chess style is extremely dynamic and creative. To achieve creativity Kasparov has emphasised concentration as playing a key role.

"The point about concentration is that it is the only way to find something new and unusual at the chessboard, the only way to create surprise with fresh ideas" Kasparov wrote in Child of Change

Style of play

Mikhail Botvinnik, head of the Soviet chess school who had experienced both Karpov and Kasparov as his chess students, apparently likened Kasparov's style to Alekhine and Karpov's to Capablanca.

The positional gurus
The dynamic gurus

"Botvinnik says Karpov's style is more like Capablanca's, whereas I am more like Alekhine. He played both of these old champions." Kasparov wrote in Child of Change

In very general terms, Alekhine and Kasparov both are brilliant calculators of variations who strive for dynamic positions. They are at their most dangerous as a consequence, when in complications especially where the opponent's king is involved. They both had to fight in their time against the most talented positional players of their respective eras- Capablanca and Karpov respectively. Capablanca and Karpov were also brilliant calculators of variations, but their supreme talent lay in their profound and deep positional understanding.

Other activities and achievements

A Barnet chess club production

Barnet Chess Club