GM Maurice Ashley commentates!

Some time ago, I found these two videos of the 1995 WCC match between Garry Kasparov and Viswanathan Anand. GM Maurice Ashley (USA) and GM Daniel King (United Kingdom) did the commentary. What was nice about these two videos was not only the intensity of the game, but the exciting commentary by Ashley and King. Ashley is known for using sports metaphors in chess and is called the “John Madden of Chess” after the excitable football commentator.

This segment shows that there may be a market for chess commentary. Ashley has also produced a DVD titled, “Speed Chess” featuring a tournament between GMs Hikaru Nakamura, Alexander Shabalov, Larry Christiansen and Joel Benjamin. Here you get a taste of Ashley’s exciting style!



  1. Wow, that really is nice commentary. Damn wouldn’t it be sweet to have that on once a week (or once a night, like that dang ‘poker after dark’ show on every night at 2am).

  2. There are other videos I’ve seen with Ashley commentating with GM Daniel King, but perhaps the most famous set was during the Kasparov-Deep Blue match where he teamed with GM Yasser Seirawan. Ashley can be heard briefly in the “Game Over” movie. Seirawan is certainly not as exciting as King, but brings deeper insights in the commentary. Nevertheless, I can say with a surety that Ashley is one of the top commentators chess.

    I have also posted a YouTube video that Ashley did for a Public Broadcasting System (PBS) Black History segment. It is very well-done production hosted by Dr. Henry Louis “Skip” Gates and gives the audience a look at Ashley up close. While this video gives the well-known story about Ashley’s beginnings, it captures what he would consider his “higher calling.” Really inspiring! Go to the home page of The Chess Drum and scroll down to the “Media Center.”

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