Andrew McGettigan

Andrew McGettigan’s latest book is The Great University Gamble.

From The Blog
13 December 2021

As Friday 3 December ticked over into Saturday morning in Dubai, Magnus Carlsen edged ahead with the sixth game of his title defence against Ian Nepomniachtchi. After five draws, Carlsen broke the deadlock by winning the longest game in World Chess Championship history: nearly eight hours of play and more than 130 moves each. The extremely high levels of play from both players in the first week of the contest promised well for the second half of the fourteen-game match. But less than a week later it was all over: Nepomniachtchi contrived to lose three of the next five games, and Carlsen was declared the champion for the fifth time on Friday 10 December.

From The Blog
26 November 2021

Three years after his last title match in London, the world chess champion, Magnus Carlsen, is defending his crown for the fourth time in Dubai. He will turn 31 at the end of the month, on the day of the fourth of fourteen scheduled match games. He has been world number one continuously since his late teens. His challenger is Ian Nepomniachtchi, currently ranked fifth in the world. They are the same age and have been playing each other for nearly twenty years. Nepomniachtchi won twice in youth tournaments before both became grandmasters and in their thirteen classical encounters Carlsen has won only once. But the last of Nepomniachtchi’s four victories was in 2017, when Carlsen was said to have been suffering with a cold.

From The Blog
4 May 2020

The Magnus Carlsen Invitational, the first high-stakes online rapid chess tournament, was won on Sunday evening by Magnus Carlsen. The host edged home against Hikaru Nakamura with two wins to one, after clinging on for a draw in a difficult endgame in the fourth and final game. The chess was high level and technical despite the shortened time limits. Carlsen, the clear favourite, was taken to the limit by Nakamura in a tense contest. Both players relied on a hazardous defensive strategy with the black pieces, enabling white to press without much risk. Including their opening encounter in the qualifying rounds, the two traded white wins for seven consecutive games before Carlsen held on at the last.

From The Blog
24 April 2020

Last month, eight of the world’s top chess players were isolated in Ekaterinburg, competing for the right to play a title match against the world champion, Magnus Carlsen, in Dubai in November. On 26 March, the Russian government announced that international flights would cease the next day. The organisers, who had already faced complaints over the decision to hold the tournament (one competitor had withdrawn), halted proceedings so the players could get home safely. A week later, Carlsen arranged an online tournament for eight players with $250,000 up for grabs (first prize $70,000, second place $45,000). It started on Saturday, 18 April. Nothing of this order has been tried before. Chess has been slow to capitalise on the vogue for e-sports and streaming culture, as sponsors have been put off by the possibilities for computer assistance and disconnection controversies.

Fiscal Illusions: Student Loans

Andrew McGettigan, 12 September 2019

In June​, Philip Hammond, in his last few weeks as chancellor of the Exchequer, wrote to the candidates vying to succeed Theresa May as leader of the Conservative Party and asked them to pledge that, if elected, they would retain his target of bringing down national debt as a percentage of GDP. ‘If we do not commit to getting our debt down after a nine-year run of uninterrupted...

Future historians will record that, alongside its many other achievements, the coalition government took the decisive steps in helping to turn some first-rate universities into third-rate companies. If...

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