One thing which surprised me when Grandmaster Maurice Ashley came to South Africa for the Millionaire Dream Maker event was the level of interest he showed in the games. I had assumed that he would be just be interested in the games from the top players but he seemed interested all the chess taking place in the tournament.
Here is a personal account from Reuben Salimu, a Zimbabwean Chess Coach and player based in South Africa. Reuben was fortunate enough to have the GM look watch over his game and they even got to chat a bit about it afterwards. Here is the account in Reuben’s own words:
I just finished 2 big International Tournaments and had the pleasure of meeting Grandmaster Maurice Ashley , gentleman in the blue shirt looking at my game.
Not only is he an international grandmaster but an inspiring , astute , caring and aware human being. He took the time to help me look at my game and taught me a specific skill which no one had explained to me how to do. Needless to say I immediately took it to heart and when I got back to the hotel and practiced it and used it for the rest of the tournament . It’s one thing being great and successful and quite another achieving all that and still staying humble to uplift those at the bottom to be better. I had a lot of respect for Maurice before I met him but now that I have he has set a standard for me to emulate and work towards. Much more important he made me realize that I can now achieve what I have been working towards now that he helped me handle my obstacles. Thank you!