Wednesday, 28 February 2018

My young Years by the side of Harm Wiersma and Ton Sijbrands, Future World Champions

My young Years by the side of Harm Wiersma and Ton Sijbrands, Future World Champions 
Draughts is more difficult than Chess - 308 pages

ISBN:   978-0-244-66661-3            -       2018    Hard cover     Lulu Editors

At the end of 2017 a draughts player asked me to have translations of some of my Spanish books that deal with the history of draughts. In one book I describe my draughts career by the side of Sijbrands and Wiersma, and in another book of two volumes I describe the life of the draughts world champion Maurice Raichenbach. I decided to start with the first book and  add some information about my business life in Spain. With that schoolteachers become aware of the great benefit that draughts has on the mind of children and their future business possibilities.

There are not many biographies of draughts players and the books there are usually deal with the game. It is clear that I did not want to write them in Dutch, because there are many books about these players in the Netherlands and I cannot teach them anything. They know much more than I do. It is much more difficult to see Spanish texts about them and that was the reason why I wrote books in Spanish about Amadou Kandi, Woldouby, Maurice Raichenbach, Baba Sy, and others, because hopefully this way we can rescue future players in South America from obscurity.

This time I will write in English so that the international players can also learn about some of the initial draughts lives of Wiersma and Sijbrands that today can be considered as history.

After the short introduction to the history of draughts in chapter 1 here come some words about the other content of this book. I wrote (in Spanish) the biography of Maurice Raichenbach, for several reasons. Firstly because with the "Raichenbach coup" against young Sijbrands I could have become immortal in 1963, as Harm Wiersma said. Secondly Raichenbach made the same victorious continuation in his game against Herman de Jongh, as Harm Wiersma did in 1963 against me in the Brinta Youth Tournament when he was just 10 years old. On the other hand Raichenbach was noted for his corner game on the board, as I used to play in 1965. Finally Raichenbach played to win tempi, as I also used to do in 1965. All these events are explained in chapters 2-6 which describe my short draughts career. I think that knowing Raichenbach’s game is necessary, since it now belongs to the theory that we must master draughts when we play it.

Finally, I am attracted to Raichenbach, because this player left checkers to engage in successful business.

During my many trips to Africa and South America I saw the way of life of their inhabitants. Checkers for them is a means of getting out of isolation. In Holland we already have many African players who make a living by playing in different draughts clubs. Draughts does not serve only to earn money, but also to increase our intelligence by 25%.

I hope my books on checkers will be useful for the young people of certain countries to come out of their isolation. In this short work the reader will realize that three children prodigies (Ton Sijbrands, Harm Wiersma, and Andreas Kuijken), among whom I was lucky to be, began to make life impossible for Russian draughts players. In this way Holland gradually regained its hegemony in draughts between 1972 and 1984.

It is my desire that with my historical works about Woldouby,  Maurice Raichenbach, Baba Sy, other famous draughts players, and my short draughts career in Holland as expressed in this book readers become interested in the game of checkers, as was my case in the Netherlands. I met Baba Sy, visited many foreign countries, and witnessed other cultures to finally settle in Spain and believe me, I owe a lot to checkers.

The game of draughts deserves a more respectful place than it has and in this sense one should remember that draughts is more difficult than chess, as is explained in chapter 7 of this book.

Draughts players are very good at analyzing, tactics, strategy, intuition, fighting spirit, performance drive, thinking ahead, long-term planning, numeracy, patience, perseverance, creativity, concentration, logical thinking, imagination, and many other good qualities.  On the other hand draughts players are very creative. They are often able to discover a draw in a hopelessly standing position by means of threats or shots.  All of that is explained in chapter 8.

I left draughts in 1965, but I felt myself playing draughts with the creation of products in various companies. For me the new products were like new variants in checkers. Draughts awakened my desire to master several languages and gave me a very competitive spirit, since I always wanted to be the best in the world with my products. I was co-owner and founder of an important company in the world of citrus extracts and among my wise friends and partners were two rectors of the University of Murcia.

After the sale of this company in 1989 to a multinational I did the same job of competitive intelligence until 2012 (the year of my retirement) in other new companies, which nowadays are also on a high level in the world with their products. One of them was sold in 2015 to an Israeli multinational.Some of my business, draughts and history activities are explained in chapter 9.

Since this book will be read by international readers and the term “King” for the most powerful piece in the game can give confusion to other speaking countries, I have dedicated some pages to the origin of this new powerful piece on the board in 1495, such as explained in chapter 10. In Holland we have in the international draughts game a square on the board on which we place the “kroonschijf” (crown piece) and that is known in the English game as king-row piece. In chapter 11 I discuss its Spanish origin.

In chapter 12 there finally are some words about the Frenchman Dr. Diego Rodríguez (1940-2015) who gave me a lot of information by phone and sent me many photos of the draughts tournaments and players in the past. He was the ambassador of draughts in the Spanish-speaking world and a man of immense generosity.

I recommend this book to psycologists and all professionals who work with children as a source of knowledge and a challenge to think in new concepts.

1    History of draughts    1
2    My brief career in draughts    10
2.1    Introduction    10
2.2    The draughts club in Midden-Beemster    10
2.3    The draughts club in Zaandam    10
2.3.1    My mentor Ed Holstvoogd    12
2.4    The child prodigy Tonnie Sijbrands    12
2.4.1    The child prodigy Andreas Kuijken    14
2.5    Sijbrands and Baba Sy    14
2.6    Sijbrands and Grandmaster Keller    14
2.6.1    The Youth Championship of North Holland 1962    16
2.6.2    The Youth Championship of Amsterdam 1962    17
2.6.3    The youth championship of North Holland 1963    18
2.6.4    The Dutch Youth Championship 1963    26    Piet Roozenburg    27
2.7    My mentor Ed Holstvoogd, in Yalta.    34
2.8    The senior championship of North Holland, 1963.    38
2.9    The great work of Keller    39
2.10    The Brinta Youth Tournament, 1963    42
2.10.1    The child prodigy Andreas Kuijken    50
2.11    The confession of Sijbrands    63
2.11.1    Prediction    63
3    The year 1964    65
3.1    Correspondence with Sijbrands    66
3.2    Harm Wiersma    67
3.3    The come back of Sijbrands    68
3.3.1    The Youth Championship of North Holland    68
3.3.2    The Youth Championship of Holland    70
3.3.3    The Hoogezand Youth Tournament    72
3.3.4    The Youth Tournament of Huizen    73    Ed Holstvoogd    73
3.3.5    The V.O.S. Tournament    74
3.3.6    The Amsterdam Tournament    74
3.4    Harm Wiersma again    76
3.5    The World Championship in Merano    78
4    The year 1965    83
4.1    Ed Holstvoogd    83
4.2    Harm Wiersma    87
4.3    Rudi Palmer    90
4.4    Ton Sijbrands    95
4.4.1    North Holland’s Youth Championship, 1965    95
4.4.2    The  National Senior Championship    96
4.5    The Third International Brinta Tournament    98
4.5.1    Ton Sijbrands    98
4.5.2    Ruud Palmer    104
4.6    The European Draughts Championship    105
4.6.1    Andreas Kuijken    105
4.7    The Turkstra Youth Tournament    107
4.8    The Turkstra Senior Tournament    110
4.8.1    Ton Sijbrands    110
4.9    The Senior Championship of  the North-Holland province    111
4.9.1    Ton Sijbrands, Ed Holstvoogd,  Govert Westerveld    111
5    The year 1966    119
5.1    Botter Tournament in Volendam    119
5.2    Ton Sijbrands    124
5.2.1    The simultaneous exhibition of Sijbrands in Purmerend    124
5.3    Harm Wiersma    135
6    Finally the child prodigies among the best    136
6.1    The year 1967    136
6.2    Harm Wiersma    138
7    Draughts is more dificult than Chess    143
7.1    Seeing Draughts    143
7.1.1    Dr. Max Euwe    143
7.1.2    Edgar Allan Poe    145
7.1.3    Dr. Marion Tinsley    147
7.1.4    Irving Cherney    148
7.1.5    François André Danica Philidor    148
7.1.6    Harry N. Pillsbury    149
7.1.7    Gerard Welling    149
7.1.8    H. Kramer    150
7.1.9    A Draughts writer    150
7.1.10    Albert Huisman    150
7.1.11    Hans Vermin    151
7.1.12    Anton Dusseldorf    152
7.1.13    Jack de Haas    152
7.1.14    Ron Heusdens    153
7.1.15    Palmans    154
7.1.16    Jannes van der Wal    154
7.1.17    Hendrik van der Zee    155
7.1.18    Alexei Tsjizjov    156
7.1.19    Eddy Budé    156
7.1.20    V. Cornetz    157
7.1.21    Harm Wiersma    157
7.2    Blind Draughts    157
7.2.1    Newell William Banks    158
7.2.2    Erno Prosman    159
7.2.3    Ton Sijbrands    160
7.3    Computers    161
7.3.1    Draughts on the 64-square board    161
7.3.2    Chess    162
7.3.3    Draughts on the 100-square board:    162
7.4    Mathematics    162
8    The great advantage of draughts    165
8.1    Acceptance of the rules    165
8.2    Acceptance of the result    165
8.3    Analysis    165
8.4    Attention    166
8.5    Self-criticism    166
8.6    Concentration    166
8.7    Creativity    166
8.8    Decision making    166
8.9    Emotional control    167
8.10    Empathy    167
8.11    Goal setting    167
8.12    Imagination    167
8.13    Increase reading ability    167
8.14    Initiative.    167
8.15    Mathematical logical reasoning    168
8.16    Memory    168
8.17    Numerical operation    168
8.18    Organization    168
8.19    Prevention of Alzheimer’s    168
8.20    Prevention of Parkinson’s    169
8.21    Responsibility    170
8.22    Self-esteem    170
8.23    Social skills    170
9    My way of playing draughts    171
9.1    In Business    171
9.2    In History    197
9.2.1    The history of the Moriscos (Morisks)    197
9.2.2    The history of draughts    204
9.2.3    The unknown authors of La Celestina    216    Intuition    220    Stylometry    222    Study of ancient Spanish words    222
10    The King    224
10.1    Isabella  I  of Castile as the    224
Virgin Mary on the chessboard    224
10.1.1    Notre Dame    225
10.1.2    Gesta Romanorum in England    227
10.1.3    Nubian queen    227
10.1.4    The queen replaced the vizier    228
10.1.5    The Virgin Mary in France    228
10.1.6    The Firzan to Alferza and Virgin Mary    230
10.1.7    Lucena and the Gesta Romanorum    231
10.1.8    Professor Petzold    232    Pope Pius II    232    Juan Ramírez de Lucena    233    Dr. Miguel Albert    235    Scachs d’amor    236    Isabella I of Castile    236
10.1.9    Virgin Mary and Isabella I of Castile    240
10.1.10    The Satiric School in Valencia    254
11    The king-row piece    258
11.1    Timoneda in 1547    258
11.2    Lucena in 1520    259
11.3    King in the beginning    261
12    Dr. Diego Rodríguez of France    265
13    Bibliography:    270


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