WILKINSON, president of the Jamaica Chess Federation.
Ian Wilkinson, president of the Jamaica Chess Federation,
is now in Athens, Greece, fufilling a landmark assignment
as a member of the Ethics Commission of the world chess body
FIDE. Wilkinson, who is also vice-president of the lawyers
group of the Jamaican Bar Association, is serving on the Commission
which is conducting public hearings into a number of matters,
the most important of which is the controversy surrounding
the 2006 World Chess Championship unification match between
Vladmir Kramnik of Russia and Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria.
The issue before the Commission arose from allegations made
by Topalov that Kramnik was cheating during the games by using
a computer programme. Topalov and his team became suspicious
as a result of Kramniks frequent visit to the toilet
during the match.
Kramnik, who vehemently denied the charges, eventually won
the match which was followed by a global audience of millions
of chess players.
The FIDE Ethics Commission investigating the case is chaired
by Italian jurist Roberto Rivello.
Wilkinsons appointment, a major accomplishment for Jamaica,
was ratified by FIDE during its Congress in Turin, Italy,
in June 2006. FIDEs choice, however, is certainly not
surprising having regard to Wilkinsons expertise and
experience in both the law and the sport of chess.
Indeed, Wilky, as his friends call him, has achieved
immortaliy of sort by producing a comprehensive coverage of
the 2002 Chess Olympiad in a 370-page volume entitled Magnificence
in Bled. The volume is a product of his own particular
erudition, both in the sport and the law, and may well remain
a unique achievement in the annals of Caribbean chess.
In his foreword to the book, Dr Daaim Shabazz of The Chess
Drum said that Wilkinson had undertaken the gargantuan
task of compiling the richness of the Olympiad experience
in this handsome volume. A total of 330 games are featured
with vivid analysis in an elegant but entertaining prose.
Dr Kevin Brown, Jamaican national master, gives the reader
a fascinating insight into the authors romance with
chess. In his introduction, Brown writes: The remarkable
aspect of Wilkys association with chess is that he only
learned to play the game just five years ago. He had recently
bought a chess set for a little boy and felt it only fitting
to understand the game when faced with the avalanche of questions
from the enthusiastic youngster.
the concepts and ideas of this most intriguing of games found
fertile soil in Wilkys curious and imaginative mind
and led to the forging of an unswerving, passionate bond.
Wilky sought and found voluminous information about chess,
not just acquiring technical knowledge but also revelling
in the history of the game, thereby cultivating a deep respect
and admiration for the institution of chess as well as its
many great practitioners and visionaries, past and present.
However, Dr Brown recalled, Wilky had to sublimate his zeal
as a player for the greater good of shepherding chess development
brilliant lawyer by profession, he has demonstrated to his
friends and acquaintances over and over again that he has
the Midas touch. Projects and causes that he gets involved
with hurtle towards success.
with good judgment, superb organizational skills and admirable
people skills, combined with an intense work ethic, he is
renowned for getting the job done.
he becme a member of the Jamaica Çhess Federation in
2002, these qualities became only too obvious to the executive.
He was therefore named Captain of the Jamaica team to the
Bled Olympiad in October 2002. This wonderful experience left
an indelible imprint on Wilky and inspired him to produce