Peter Leko: "Look at the Board Better Than at the Computer Evaluation"

Время публикации: 21.10.2011 03:03 | Последнее обновление: 21.10.2011 03:48
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E.KLIMETS: This is Chess-News, we are at the Governor’s Cup and Peter Leko is with us. He just finished his last round and to all appearances he is on the third place, aren’t you Peter?

P.LEKO: Perhaps, I don’t know.

E.KLIMETS: Let’s start from your impressions on the tournament and the city Saratov. As I know it’s the first time you are here?

P.LEKO: That’s true. We were lucky to have a hotel that overviews Volga. That was so pleasant at the beginning of the tournament, we used to walk when it was a good weather and I felt like in French Riviera. But it was a hard tournament, when you are a bit tired and the weather is changing so you can’t walk any more it’s not that nice at all. You get a feeling of being happy that the tournament will finish soon! But when it just started and the sun was shining there were more positive emotions.

E. KLIMETS: What are your feelings now? Is that a happiness that the tournament has finally finished or maybe you initially expected a better result in it?

P.LEKO: I wasn’t thinking about that initially. Of course, I wanted more. But sometimes I was simply unlucky. I had a better position in lots of games, but I couldn’t win them. After the game with Morozevich was finished I already had a feeling that I’ve slipped him and now he’d start to win everything. That can be a reason of why my incentive went down – I lost a chance to win the tournament, so the goals changed automatically.  I wasn’t bad, but the tournament was really strong, a lot of strong participants.

It wouldn’t be fair if I won’t mention that I was really lucky in the second round. […]

In general I had interesting games. Well, I haven’t played for a year and I feel lack of practice. I’m spending too much time on the openings; and when I’m running out of time I think that I’m playing really good, but because of the time trouble I again do something wrong and something again doesn’t work out.

E.KLIMETS: By the way, what about the break. Both of you (Morozevich) had a break. What did you devote your free time to? Were those some serious deeper activities? Did you use it for rest?

P.LEKO: At the beginning I thought I’d only rest, but pretty soon I understood that I can’t without chess. O.K. five or ten days can be but then… I wanted to do a lot in chess training, and I did, but that’s always like that: whatever you do you still lose some skills. Now I have to play for gaining confidence again, when a hand itself makes good moves. I have to concentrate and try hard to make a good move, but usually that should come automatically.

E.KLIMETS: But after a long break you were successful in World Team Championship on the first board. So, nothing prejudiced your success there?

P.LEKO: Yes, nothing. I won two very good games against Ivanchuk and Roiz but after that I was so unlucky in the first round in Khanty-Mansiysk… After the break I played in two strong tournaments and I haven’t lost a game. I lost only one game to Shankland… It’s of course foolishness to think that one loses confidence because of the only lost game, but it was so hard for me, I was under psychological pressure.  […]

E.KLIMETS: What was the goal of the break you took? Just for collecting your thoughts? What is the purpose of the break if you just said one can lose practical skills because of it?

P.LEKO: I was simply unlucky. When I agreed to be Kramnik’s second I didn’t know that would be series of Grand Prix. In the end I wasn’t just Kramnik’s second but I also played in top events as well as in Grand Prix. A year and half without a break. I felt that I lost a lot of strength and I already had to… […]

Soon I will play in European Team Championship and to be true I have no idea where will be my next tournament. I don’t know where to practice if not in competitions. Now I have got a stimulus, I feel what I should be doing and I’ll be working hard.So, yes, I have a stimulus.

E.KLIMETS: Formerly, when you just started to train with your current coach Arshak Petrosian, he said that the first thing you’d be working on will be adding more aggression to your style of playing which means getting more wins. But you still have a lot of draws. Why do you think that happens? Is that because of the strong rivals or lack of self-confidence?

P.LEKO: Of course diffidence too. Now I’m not that good in openings. Chess itself has changed a lot, these high-end computers appeared. It’s really hard to get anything from the openings. Earlier I used to play only 1.e4, but now I also play 1.d4., that’s simply because you have so many problems with 1.e4 that it doesn’t lead you to success. But when you play both of them you lose a lot of energy during training. In general, it’s difficult to remember all variants, play them confidently and at the same time understand them all. That’s why I said it’s important for me to feel my game.

E.KLIMETS: I know you are good in Fischer chess. Maybe that’s because…

P.LEKO: I don’t know, it’s already ten years I haven’t played “Fischer chess”… but, of course that’s pleasant. Bobby Fischer lived in Hungary, we knew each other and we talked about that. Already then – that was in 98-99 – he said that something’s going on with chess. That much training is bad for health. That’s why one should play Fischer chess as long as it frees you from remembering all the variants before the game – you just go for a walk or to the swimming-pool instead, and you come to the game fresh. But that’s completely different chess, while normal classical chess – that’s classical chess. Now you can be training for ten hours a day but in vain. As Kramnik said in his interview to Tkachev, the main problem of the strong chess players is that after the hard work it can happen they are not able to show even five percent of it. […]

I don’t obviously follow games with the computer. Sure, if I see something interesting I’d use computer too. But that’s not for criticizing others’ mistakes. For instance, when a Grandmaster commentates the game online, he, as a strong chess player, has to understand why the player made this or that mistake; but he sees only the move computer shows, others are simply not interesting to him.

E.KLIMETS: Have you ever thought of trying yourself as a commentator?

P.LEKO: Well, when I’ll become a bad chess player. It’s never too late to become a commentator; but it is unknown how long will be the period when you’ll be playing well. I’m happy that both Morozevich and Svidler are playing well. It is fifteen years we’re playing together. I can’t say we’re close friends, we’ve always been rivals. We used to play a lot of tournaments together; we played a lot of interesting games. That’s why I always support people of my period. So, I’m happy that Moro is playing well. Svidler has also won two important tournaments lately. It‘s funny that a lot of young people thought Svidler’s career came to its end literally two years ago. Being in Hungary I said: I’m sorry but Svidler is a brilliant player, he’s very, very strong. But nobody cocked an ear to me. […]

E.KLIMETS: Whom do you consider as top-rated from the young chess players? Magnus Carlsen is the only one.

P.LEKO: Karjakin as well.

And Nakamura. Carlsen is a prodigy, but he always got lots of support, he always had sponsors due to whom he became not just strong but one of the very best players. Karjakin’s situation is stabilized after he moved to Russia from Ukraine. Due to good coaches he made a step forward. Nakamura also gets a lot from America. So, they’re prodigies, but even “super talented” people wouldn’t be where they are now without help. Only a mixture of super talent and help will bring a very good result, won’t it?

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