Yes, you read the title right. Kasparov was busy signing chessboards for fans – like you do when you’re a former world chess chamption – when one of them turned around and bashed him on the head. Kasparov’s attacker is thought to have been affiliated with the pro-Putin youth group Nashi.
Fortunately for Kasparov his wounds weren’t serious, and he was able to go on with his day. Chessbase, always first with the news, has an exclusive interview:
It was quite surprising and shocking. It happened
so fast that nobody could intervene. I signed the chessboard for a "fan"
and then turned away to talk to another person. He was telling me about his
town, and I was looking at a local paper he showed me. Anyway, I had turned
my head and this guy simply attacked me.
But by far the best Kasparov quote comes from Echo Moskvy radio station, via Neeka’s Backlog:
It’s good that chess was a popular game in the USSR, not baseball.
In my days as a chessplayer, I saw a few physical fights over a chessboard, but I never actually saw anyone fight with a chessboard. That’s just not in the spirit of the game…