Friday, January 26, 2007

Kayin's Triumph

Congratulations to Whitney Young High School chess star Kayin Barclay, who, as the number-one high school chess player in Illinois, is the subject of of an article in today’s Chicago Sun-Times. Anyone who follows scholastic chess in the Chicago area is familiar with Kayin’s exploits, which include, among many other things, a victory last year over a top grandmaster. Now, thanks to this richly deserved recogntion from the Sun-Times, many others will know about him as well.

I had the privilege of playing and losing to Kayin last summer at the Warren Chess Scholars exhibition in Grant Park. It was a humbling experience. He was polite and deferential as he set about methodically to crush me like an aluminum can. He won handily, even though at two points during the game Kayin had insisted—politely but firmly—that I take back a bone-headed blunder. Afterwards, he patiently went over the game with me and showed me where I’d gone wrong. I still have the record of that game. I was grateful for the free lesson from such a superior chess player, and as a Whitney Young parent I’m delighted to see the school’s top player getting the praise he deserves. Please read all about it.

photo: Jon Sall/Sun-Times

Update (02/03/07): More Kayin coverage at Scholastic Chess Gateway, Lamarr Wilson's blog, and 64 Square Jungle.


Unknown said...

You beat me to the post! :) That's ok, I don't mind commenting over here as well.

I'm proud of Kayin. I've known him and his family for years and he continues to amaze me with all of his achievements. Congrats, and keep up the good work. I look forward to your championship in April!

Tom Panelas said...


Our friend Chessdad64 thinks this year's Denker competition will be a tough one. Maybe he'll come here and give us a preview of how he thinks it's shaping up.


Unknown said...

Yeah, I saw he mentioned that. Ilan is definitely a contender. He's an excellent chess player, and I would be happy for him as well.

Anonymous said...

Ok -- You have badgered me into blogging so as to explain myself -- see "Dreamin of Denker" over at