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Fidel Castro
F Castro 
Number of games in database: 1
Years covered: 1966

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(born Aug-13-1926, died Nov-26-2016, 90 years old) Cuba

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Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz was born on his family's sugar plantation near Birán, in Cuba’s Oriente province. He enrolled at the University of Havana Law School in 1945 and after graduating, he opened a private law practice in Havana in 1950. His intention of running for the Cuban Parliament in 1952 as a member of the front-running progressive albeit anti-communist Partido Ortodoxo was disrupted when Fulgencio Batista seized power after an eight-year absence. Following this, Castro organised a rebellion which was ultimately successful in 1959, when Batista fled Cuba. He declared a socialist state in 1961 and remained the Cuban leader until 18 February 2008, a rule lasting 47 years, stepping down in favour of his brother Raúl.

The inaugural Capablanca Memorial Tournament was held in 1951, with the second being cut short in 1952 by Batista’s coup. It was recommenced in 1962 under the auspices of Castro and chess enthusiast Ernesto Ché Guevara, whom Ludek Pachman, in his memoirs considered to be a "first-rank chessplayer." It has remained a regular feature of the chess calendar, one of the most notable being the 1965 event in which Robert James Fischer participated via telex, although not before receiving an assurance from Castro that the he would cease making political capital out of his participation. Castro was on the organizing committee of the 17th Chess Olympiad that was held in Havana in 1966; the result reflected many of the Summer Olympic results wherein the USSR and the USA came first and second.

In December 2002, Cuba hosted a massive chess tournament at the Plaza de la Revolucion in Havana during which about 11,000 amateurs played 550 chess masters in a simultaneous exhibition breaking the world record of 10,007 games set previously in the Zocalo Plaza, in Mexico City. Castro participated, playing against the President of the Cuban Chess Federation GM Silvino Garcia Martinez.

Fidel Castro passed away in Havana on 26 November 2016.

Wikipedia article: Fidel Castro

Last updated: 2016-11-26 23:45:33

 page 1 of 1; one game  PGN Download 
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. F Terrazas vs F Castro 0-1191966Casual gameC34 King's Gambit Accepted

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Long as no-one mentions Averbakh now....
Nov-28-16  Kaspablanca: saffuna: Compare how many medals have Cuba and how many have Mexico and Argentina.

Jambow: No, it doesnt count but it does count the GMs that Cuba had thanks to the support the Revolution gave to the Cuban chess and other sports.

In Cuba nobody dies due to hunger and you wont see children sleeping in the streets.

Nov-28-16  ZonszeinP: <OhioChessFan> I won't. I'm really sorry to hear such a bad news.
I think I had a premonition
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: Oh, perhaps I shouldn't be so light hearted about a death. <Zons> please don't think there was any sort of connection between your comment and Taimanov's death, as if even mentioning it brought it on.
Nov-28-16  ZonszeinP: Thank you.
Premium Chessgames Member

Nov-28-16  zanzibar: <flippant> is more apt I think.
Nov-28-16  BUNA: <technical draw: Castro executed thousands in the first year of his dictatorship. Even his close friends and high ranking officers like Camilo Cienfuegos were assassinated.>

Do you really believe that Osmany Cienfuegos had continued to act as minister in Castro's revolutionary gouvernment if there were any hints that the latter had "assassinated" his brother Camilo?

Camilo Cienfuegos died in a plane crash, Che suspected that it was the result of an american plot and the rest is cuban exile propaganda.

Nov-29-16  Jambow: <ZonszeinP: <OhioChessFan> I won't. I'm really sorry to hear such a bad news. I think I had a premonition>

Nah he was 90 years old...

I once thought I was having deja vu only to find it was a late premonition...

Which is a lot like my Sprint phone texts but that is another story.

Premium Chessgames Member
  technical draw: <BUNA> Camilo Cienfuego's death is well documented. Don't believe the propaganda.
Nov-29-16  unferth: <HeMateMe: MLB is still wondering "What if...?">

that's actually a myth. Fidel was a good high-school basketball player but never a baseball player of any note, never considered as a prospect. if you look at the clips of him pitching in the famous exhibition game between his team & the Cuban pros, you can see that he doesn't have any kind of arm.

Nov-29-16  unferth: or this one, which is really great:

Nov-29-16  zanzibar: Here's some footage, six years after the revolution so a little slack must be given...

Still, as the announcer (Ed Herlihy) says, "That's one game where the ump really has to be careful!"

And careful he was, Fidel struck out all three batters he faced.

Nov-29-16  unferth: that's the exhibition I was talking about. I'll give him some slack, but that's sure not the delivery of a former prospect...
Nov-29-16  zanzibar: <unferth> thanks for that video link - it's hilarious.

And yes, I was one of those who thought Castro actually did have a try-out.

The things we used to believe before the internet!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Nightsurfer: There is a song that features the beauty of Cuba ... and the voice of <Fidel Castro> can be heard as well ... that very song <"Cuba Baila Baila!"> has been composed by chess-playing German jazz musician Rainer Schnelle , and the lyrics have been written by chess-playing German journalist Rene Gralla , please check it out on YOUTUBE: ... ;-) ... !
Premium Chessgames Member
  Nightsurfer: Oops ... the link has changed with regard to that very song <"Cuba Baila Baila!"> that has been written and produced by Rene Gralla (lyrics) and that has been composed by Rainer Schnelle and that has been recorded at <Recording Studio Rainer Schnelle> that would later become the venue of the game R Schnelle vs R Gralla, 2003, please check out the now <CORRECT LINK> as follows: ... so please watch the video and enjoy the music! :-)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Joshka: <Nightsurfer>
Premium Chessgames Member
  Nightsurfer: <Joshka> So cool! :-)
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: I'm thinking players were scared to try real hard against him.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Domdaniel: <HMM> -- < I'm thinking players were scared to try real hard against him.>

No, HMM, that's not thinking. It's just responding to reflexes. When you think - if you ever do - you'll see the difference.

Premium Chessgames Member
  moronovich: <When you think - if you ever do - you'll see the difference.>

Where is the thinking in this rudeness ?

Dec-06-18  Count Wedgemore: Yes, that was really uncalled for.
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: Fidel was a good guy, ask any group he threw in jail.

There is some light in the tunnel, though. I could see commerce and trade finally opening up between Cuba and the USA. When that happens a middle class is created, and they eventually create a regime change. It probably won't really pick up until Castro's brother Raul dies.

Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: <HHM> There was already plenty of trade under Batista, just not the right kind. Not that Castro was any better, as shown by this game. Reminds me of the scene in "The Dictator" where he uses the starting pistol to kill all the other competitors in the race.
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