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David R. Sands

David R. Sands

Raised in Northern Virginia, David R. Sands received an undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia and a master's degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He worked as a reporter for several Washington-area business publications before joining The Washington Times.

At The Times, Mr. Sands has covered numerous beats, including international trade, banking, politics and Capitol Hill, and spent eight years on the foreign desk as senior diplomatic correspondent. He is currently the deputy editor for politics. In addition, he has reviewed books and written feature stories for the newspaper and authored The Times' weekly chess column since 1993. He is also senior writer for Washington GolfStyles, a monthly publication covering the Mid-Atlantic golf scene.


Articles by David R. Sands

SANDS: Top chess players on tap as Eastern starts Dec. 27

It's the most wonderful time of the year, time for that special event that lifts us out of the winter doldrums. Yes, the 38th annual Eastern Open kicks off Dec. 27, a four-section, seven-round Swiss event that regularly attracts one of the largest and strongest fields for a regional event. Published December 13, 2011

Nebraska electoral-vote rule unique

For states considering divvying up their electoral votes in presidential elections for partisan advantage, Rep. Lee Terry, Nebraska Republican, has a little advice: Be careful what you wish for. Published December 6, 2011

SANDS: Tweeters all thumbs in friendly world chess match

They're allowed 140 characters, but Team Twitter lasted only 22 moves. As part of the opening ceremonies for the London Chess Classic last week, the nine English and international grandmasters in the field took on the world in a friendly game via Twitter, with fans around the world tweeting in their preferred moves. Published December 6, 2011

SANDS: SPICE in Texas gets U.S. out of chess backwater

We can claim the Super Bowl, the World Series and three of golf's four "majors," and we have played host to eight Olympics. But when it comes to staging big-time chess events, the U.S. is something of a backwater. So for patriotic reasons if nothing else, it's nice to report on the fifth annual SPICE Cup, staged last month in Lubbock, Texas, by Texas Tech University and the Susan Polgar Foundation. Published November 1, 2011

SANDS: Enkhbat surge surprises at class championships

Texas GM Alejandro Ramirez and surprising Maryland IM Tegshsuren Enkhbat shared the lead entering the final turn in the Continental Class Championships, held over Columbus Day weekend in Arlington. The nine-round event, one of the strongest on the area's chess calendar, concluded too late Monday night for the results to be included in this column. Published October 11, 2011

SANDS: Exhibition with Ashley to aid school program

Maurice Ashley, the first black American grandmaster and a well-known commentator on ESPN and a host of national news programs, will conduct a 30-board simultaneous exhibition at the U.S. Chess Center downtown on Oct. 11. Published October 4, 2011

SANDS: Reaching for peace through a game of war

Because the object of the game is to destroy your opponent's army and kill his king, it's always been a little bit odd that chess matches long have been organized to improve understanding and promote fellow feeling between rival schools, cities and nations. Published September 27, 2011

**FILE** Sen. Bill Nelson, Florida Democrat (Mary F. Calvert/The Washington Times)

Hasner tops Times poll as choice to face Nelson in 2012

Former Florida Republican state House Majority Leader Adam Hasner has narrowly won a poll of state conservatives meeting in Orlando, giving his campaign fresh momentum in the tight contest for the right to take on Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson next year. Published September 23, 2011

SANDS: Svidler KOs Grischuk, wins World Cup crown

In what likely will prove a crowd-pleasing triumph, Russian GM Peter Svidler edged compatriot GM Alexander Grischuk 2 1/2-1 1/2 to win the FIDE World Cup knockout tournament Monday in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia. Published September 20, 2011

SANDS: 'Deflection sacrifice': Old theme, new use

The concept of the "deflection sacrifice" is relatively easy to grasp: If a piece or a pawn is carrying out a key defensive chore, whether it's preventing mate or blocking a key pawn advance, it often is worthwhile sacrificing material to draw (or deflect) the defender from his post. Published September 13, 2011

SANDS: Virginian makes Most of chances in Atlantic

There's no thrill quite like beating your first grandmaster. So I'm told. Virginia expert Eric Most can offer a firsthand account of the experience in the wake of his stunning shared first place in last month's 43rd annual Atlantic Open downtown. Published September 5, 2011

SANDS: Lapshun, Most star in upset-filled Atlantic

New York IM Yury Lapshun weathered a hurricane and navigated a shoal-filled, upset-laden Atlantic Open to take the city's biggest summer tournament on tiebreaks over Virginia expert Eric Most on Sunday, played despite the elements at the event's traditional site, the Westin Washington Hotel downtown. Lapshun and Most were the only two undefeated players in the Open section, drawing their final-round game to finish at 4 1/2- 1/2, a half-point ahead of veteran Connecticut GM Sergey Kudrin. Published August 30, 2011

**FILE** Former New York Gov. George E. Pataki (Associated Press)

Pataki passes on 2012 race

After flirting with a late entry into the 2012 Republican presidential sweepstakes, former New York Gov. George Pataki said Friday he wil not seek the nomination. Published August 26, 2011

SANDS: Marking the centenary of a cerebral champ

He boasted a record and a resume as impressive as anyone who ever played the game, but it always seemed that three-time world champion Mikhail Botvinnik was more admired than loved by chess players around the world. Published August 23, 2011

SANDS: Lenderman last man standing in U.S. Open

He didn't finish in the money, but Boston IM Marc Esserman had a major say in the outcome of last week's 112th U.S. Open in Orlando, Fla., the nation's premier open event, won in a sudden-death playoff by young New York GM Aleksandr Lenderman over fellow GM Alejandro Ramirez. Published August 16, 2011

SANDS: U.S. youths in action at home and abroad

School's out for the summer, but some of the country's best young chess players aren't exactly kicking back and taking it easy. Florida GM Ray Robson, the reigning U.S. junior champ, is in the thick of the fight for the world junior title, being contested in Chennai, India. The 16-year-old Robson, seeded sixth, started strongly with two wins and a draw before dropping a point to Russian IM Aleksey Goganov. Play continues through the end of this week. Published August 9, 2011

SANDS: Kramnik, Carlsen are both hot in July events

Two of the world's best lived up to their billing as former world champion Vladimir Kramnik of Russia and Norwegian star (and perhaps future world champion) Magnus Carlsen turned in dominating performances in two recent high-powered events in Europe. Published August 2, 2011

SANDS: U.S.'s Seirawan shines in world team matches

Some of the top stars of the game are in action in events around the globe this week, but the best performance could be that turned in by a player who hasn't been a factor on the world stage for more than a decade. Published July 26, 2011