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Talk of the Universe: Ganguly in conversation with Anish Giri

by Shahid Ahmed - 21/07/2020

The latest guest on Surya Sekhar Ganguly's talk show was none other Dutch no.1 and World no.10 Anish Giri. In this two-part series, Anish Giri appeared with his wife Sopiko Guramishvili on their fifth wedding anniversary. Their cute little son Daniel also made a short and sweet appearance at the beginning of part 1. While the first part has Rapid fire, Blindfold game and Know-your-partner quiz games along with various games of Anish Giri, in the second part we get to see Giri answering a lot of questions asked by the fans. Most importantly in these two part miniseries, Surya brings out the serious side of Giri, one that is not seen in his tweets or instagram posts. Photo: Surya's youtube channel.

The Serious Giri

We all are aware of Giri's humorous side on twitter, instagram and his recently launched youtube channel. However, Surya Sekhar Ganguly remains consistent with his efforts as he tries to extract the side which we do not get to see of the Dutch no.1 and World no.10 by discussing various positions and his thoughts of them. That's not all, Giri joins the first part with his lovely wife Sopiko Guramishvili and their uber cute kid Daniel on their fifth wedding anniversary.

Daniel made a lot of cute faces which brought a smile to his parents face | Photo: Surya's stream

Sopiko talks about balancing various roles in her life - playing, commentating, mother and more. She also mentions about Anish helping helping him a lot with making various chess materials. She also mentions about the fact that Anish forgot to bring his suit for their wedding ceremony.

"I started chess in Russia, then very quickly I moved to Japan where I had a very different type of chess upbringing"

- Giri on whether chess books or computer engine was involved in his chess upbringing.

Giri knows My Great Predecessors Part II inside out | Photo: Amazon India

"It doesn't feel like work to me, it just feels like I am doing what I love to do all day long."

- Giri on why others are impressed with the amount of hard work he can do.

Endgame Enigma and Sharp Tactician

Here are the positions which were discussed in Episode 9

Giri - Rodshtein, European Cup 2012

White to play

Giri - Grischuk, Titled Tuesday 2020

White to play

Giri - Wojtaszek, Biel 2014

White to play

Giri - Beliavsky, European Team 2015

White to play

"It was one of my best games" - Giri remarked on the above diagram when Surya presented this position.

Greet - Giri, Batumi Olympiad 2018

A variation from the game - 16.b4

"I think when you play against a much lower rated opponent or if you play in a must-win situation which is sort of similar, you start to consider that every disbalance is in your favor somehow." - Giri on if 16.b4 happened in the game.

Black to play

Giri - Kramnik, Tata Steel-A 2018

White to play

Giri - Morozevich, Beijing Rapid 2012

White to play

"I remember I played almost instantly from the start but it's not because I knew. It's just that I thought this is very natural' - Giri on the game against Morozevich.

Giri - Leko, FIDE World Cup 2015

White to play

"I have won few of these positions actually" - Giri on the above diagram.

Giri - Topalov, Stavanger 2015

Black to play

Replay the games

Episode 9

In Conversation with Episode 9: Anish Giri and Sopiko Guramishvili | Video: Surya Sekhar Ganguly

Giri's answers and recommendations

In the second episode, Giri answers a lot of questions asked by the audience. Giri explains Rg8 novelty against Aronian, helping Kramnik at the Candidates as a second and much more.

Aronian - Kramnik, Candidates 2018

Position after 7...Rg8

Giri talks about Tukmakov's book Coaching the Chess Stars | Photo: Amazon India

When asked about recommending books, Giri said, "For openings these days I think it's excellent to use the engines but I understand for many players especially at the start it might be difficult to use the engines in the right way. So in that sense books are very helpful." He also added, "I think you can always be safe if you go with the book of someone who has worked at a high level. For e.g. I have not received the book of Sethuraman on Najdorf and Taimanov but I already know it's a great book just by knowing the author."

Sethuraman's new book Beat the Najdorf & Taimanov Sicilians is out now | Photo: Thinkers Publishing

For theoretical endgames, Giri recommended 100 Endgames You Must Know by Jesus de la Villa and Mark Dvoretsky's Endgame Manual

Giri's recommendation for books on theoretical endgame | Photo: Kobo and Amazon India

For practical endgames, Giri recommended Tibor Karolyi's book Endgame Virtuoso - Anatoly Karpov.

Karolyi's book Endgame Virtuoso on Karpov was recommended by Giri for practical endgames | Photo: Antique Sports Books

For general chess, Giri finds Kasparov on Kasparov books to be brilliant | Photo: Everyman Chess

Giri likes Muller's books on theoretical endgames | Photo: Sagar Shah

"Jan Timman has written fantastic books too. He has written a book recently that I really love about Kasparov-Karpov match. It is annotated in a way exactly how I wanted it to be." - Giri on The Longest Game by Jan Timman.

Giri loved the way Jan Timman annotated the games in the book | Photo: Amazon US

One of the favorite book of Anish Giri - Dynamic Decision Making in Chess | Photo: Quality Chess

Giri - Brandenburg, Dieren Open 2009

White to play

Hillarp Persson - Giri, Sigeman & Co. 2010

Black to play

So - Giri, Corus-B 2010

White to play

Carlsen - Giri, Tata Steel-A 2011

Black to play

Giri - Anton Guijarro, Batumi 2019

White to play

Giri - Dominguez Perez, Novi Sad 2016

White to play

Giri - Mamedyarov, Tata Steel-A 2018

White to play

Giri - Wojtaszek, FIDE World Cup 2015

White to play

Ding - Giri, Wenzhou 2017

Black to play

The last game Ding Liren lost to Anish Giri before having a 100-game unbeaten streak.

Replay the games

Episode 10

In Conversation with Anish Giri Episode 10: Ask Anish  | Video: Surya Sekhar Ganguly


Surya Sekhar Ganguly's youtube channel

Anish Giri on twitter, instagram and youtube