My Opening Move: an Introduction
By Joel Benjamin

Gambit readers: I’ll be blogging in this space for the next three weeks, so I think an introduction is in order. I’m a lifelong resident of the New York metropolitan area, and I grew up reading Robert Byrne’s column in The Times. I’m honored to count Mr. Byrne among my good friends as well.

I have had a long career as a competitive player, ever since I learned to play chess watching the Fischer-Spassky match on television. I’ve been a grandmaster since 1986. I played in 23 consecutive U.S. Championships, winning three of them and finishing second five times. I’ve been a member of six U.S. teams in the chess Olympiad, and I took home two gold medals from the 1993 World Team Championship.

I was the chess consultant for IBM’s Deep Blue computer, which defeated the world champion Garry Kasparov in a match in 1997. I also had a cameo in the film “Searching for Bobby Fischer.”

I don’t really like to brag so I will stop there, but if you want to know more, feel free to buy my new book, “American Grandmaster: Four Decades of Chess Adventures” (Everyman Books).

Nowadays I don’t have much time for tournaments, but you can find me all over the Internet. I write a Q&A column for chesslifeonline called “Ask GM Joel,” and I play host to “Game of the Week” on the Internet Chess Club. I am especially proud to be writing three Sunday columns for the Times as well as this blog.

Source: NY Times

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