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Checkers Champion
Harm Wiersma 2

Checkers World Championships

Throughout his checkers career, Harm Wiersma contested in International tournaments and World Championship checkers competitions played in countries around the world: Russia, the Netherlands, France, Italy, Suriname, Brazil, Mali, and Senegal. However, the European International Draughts/Checkers World Championship matches were most often held in the Netherlands.
Harm Wiersma faced the opposition of Grandmaster and renowned checkerist, Iser Koeperman in the World Championship tournament in Hengelo, Netherlands, in 1972.

Wiersma playing a game of checkersWiersma playing a game of checkers 1976

Then, four years later in 1976, Harm Wiersma’s checkers game found the winning combination so much so that he defeated all his opponents across the checkerboard, including some strong Grandmasters from the Soviet Union, in the World tournament in Amsterdam to become the checkers World Champion for the first time in his career.
Checkers Champion 5th Round vs Hisard
Checkers Champion 5th Round vs Hisard
Checkers Champion The Winning Moment
Checkers Champion, The Winning Moment
Checkers Champion Harm Wiersma vs Fidele Nimbi
Checkers Champion Harm Wiersma vs Fidele Nimbi
Checkers Champion Thom Nobbe & Harm Wiersma
Checkers Champion
Thom Nobbe
Harm Wiersma
Checkers Champion Harm with his parents & sister
Checkers Champion
Harm with his parents
& sister.
Checkers Champion Iser Koeperman ~ Words of Wisdom
Checkers Champion
Iser Koeperman
Words of Wisdom

International Checkers World Champion 1976

Two years later, the Dutch checkers champion defended his title against Anatoli Gantwarg in Arco, Italy, but was not able to beat the Russian master in this competition. The final score ended as 7 wins against 5. However, in 1979, Harm Wiersma was the challenger in the final round and this time succeeded in defeating the Russian in Utrecht, Netherlands, with a closing score of 22-18 for Wiersma.

World Championship UtrechtHarm Wiersma World Champion
Anatoli Gantwarg vs Harm Wiersma
World Championship Utrecht, Netherlands, 1979

Harm Wiersma World Champion

The checkers fight was now on between Wiersma and Gantwarg, who regained the World title in 1980 at the championship competition held in Bamako, Mali. Then, Harm Wiersma fought tenaciously to recapture his checkers World Championship title in the Rotterdam tournament of 1981. This time Wiersma defeated the Russian World Champion and Grandmaster by a score of 22-18, yet again.

Checkers Champions Harm Wiersma & Anatoli GantwargCheckers Champions Harm Wiersma & Anatoli Gantwarg
Harm Wiersma & Anatoli Gantwarg
Rotterdam, Netherlands 1981|

Harm Wiersma World Champion In 1982, there was a new contender for the title ~ Jannes van der Wal, who won the World checkers title in the International competition in Sao Paolo, Brazil. This only lasted a year as Harm Wiersma came back with a vengeance in 1983 and once more regained the World title as he defeated van der Wal across the checkerboard with a final score of 21-19.

During 1983, Harm Wiersma also participated in the 8th Volmac Achtkamp (World Qualifier) and played against Anatoli Gantwarg, Alexander Baljakin, and Vadim Virni and won the tournament with a first place standing.
Checkers Champions Vadim Virni vs Harm Wiersma
Checkers Champions
Vadim Virni
Harm Wiersma
Checkers Champions Harm Wiersma & Jannes van der Wal
Checkers Champions
Harm Wiersma
Jannes van der Wal

Harm Wiersma World Champion 1983

The following year, the World Champion in International checkers defended his title in the final round against Vadim Virni, but the match ended in a 20-20 tie for both checkerists. This outcome resulted in Harm Wiersma retaining his European World title and unfortunately for Virni, the score lost him the championship title and placed him 2nd overall.
Checker Champion Harm Wiersma
Checker Champion
Harm Wiersma
Checker Champion Harm Wiersma vs Vadim Virni
Checker Champion
Harm Wiersma
Vadim Virni
Checker Champion Vadim Virni
Checker Champion
Vadim Virni

Harm Wiersma retains title as International checkers World Champion.

Shortly after the match with Virni, Harm Wiersma withdraws from personal world competitions and again only the checkers Grandmaster fully knows the rationale behind the decision. Perhaps the competition ceased to be as challenging or the novelty of the championship title had worn off. Perhaps it was simply time to step back and focus on other aspects of the checkers world. Regardless, it would be years before Wiersma re-entered the checkers arena in the same limelight as before.

Harm Wiersma concentrating

It wasn't until some time in 1992 that the former Dutch World Champion re-appeared on the International checkers scene and when he began to compete across the checkerboard, Harm Wiersma had not seemingly lost any of his skill, techniques, or individual checkers style. Although he had resigned from contesting in personal games at World Checkers Championships after 1984, he was back facing opponents across the checkerboard in the world checkers arena in Toulon, France. Alexei Tsjizjov defended his World checkers title from 1988 through 1991, and he succeeded in retaining that title in 1992.

However, Wiersma did return to the national checkers scene and succeeded in winning the National checkers tournament and title of Netherlands’ Champion in 1992.

Wiersma did return winning in 1992

Toulon 1992

Harm Wiersma also joined the field of Grandmasters to participate in the first half of the World Championship Cup hosted in Toulon, France. After a few years absent from the checkerboard and contenders in the International checkers circuit, Harm fared surprisingly well. His final opponent was World Champion, Alexei Tsjizjov, from the Soviet Union, but his defeat resulted in his tie for second place with Rob Clerc, Ton Sijbrands and Alexander Baljakin.

Then Harm Wiersma was back in form the following year and gave Alexei a run for his money at the checkerboard in the second half of the World Championship Cup held in Leeuwarden, Netherlands. In the final round of the championship, Wiersma challenged the defending champion to a solid game of checkers, but Harm couldn't quite pull off a winning result. The final score ended the game with 22-18 going to the World Champion, Alexei Tsjizjov. Once again, Tsjizjov successfully defended his World title.

Harm Wiersma vs Alexei Tsjizjov
Harm Wiersma vs Alexei Tsjizjov
Leeuwarden 1993

There was some what of an irony in that total outcome because Harm scored the same points in the 1979 and 1981 World Championships against Anatoli Gantwarg. Harm then continued to contest other local and national tournaments within the International checkers circuit.

In 1998, he entered the 80th National Netherlands Championship tournament in Hoogezand-Sappemeer for the seventh time in his impressive checkers career for the title of National Champion in the Netherlands.

At first, the championship checkers play was less than exciting with Hans Jansen from the Gelderse Huissen club leading the chase at the checkerboard, with only Harm Wiersma coming up for a real challenge. The closer the challengers moved towards the tournament the end, the closer Wiersma moved towards Jansen’s score. Jansen soon felt a tingling in his neck as Wiersma was closing in and made a mistake against the youngest participant, Kees Thijssen, which cost him in his latter round. In the final round of the checkers competition, both master players had accumulated seventeen points in thirteen games so a playoff was necessary. The first three games ended in a draw, which was in Jansen’s favor but against Wiersma.

The tournament then moved into a checkers game played with an accelerated pace, but the opponents were closely matched and the first result at the checkerboard remained the same. In the second checkers game Wiersma created a ‘crook’ on the checkerboard, which took Jansen by surprise because he didn't know the outcome of the play. The final result ended in Harm Wiersma winning the 1998 Netherlands Championship with his renowned creativity.

Harm Wiersma 1998 Netherlands Champion

Harm Wiersma 1998 Netherlands Champion
7th National Checkers Champion title match.

Continued Checkers Information, Harm Wiersma

Harm Wiersma Harm Wiersma 2 Harm Wiersma 3
Harm Wiersma 4 Harm Wiersma 5  


DeerLake Online Store Items

Wonder Mugs Play checkers online, and enjoy drinking from this cool wonder mug.
When adding hot liquid, the colors of the mug will change, checkers cool.

Checkers is a two-player game, where one player is assigned white-chip checkers and the other red. The aim is to play checkers online, capture all of the other player's checkers or make them impossible to move.

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