Ritvars first encounter with chess was at the age of 6, when his dad explained the basic rules of how the chess pieces move. Back then chess was just another thing he was introduced to and nobody had even the slightest idea of how lasting Ritvars' relationship with the game would be.
At the age of 8 Ritvars first went to the local chess club and joined a beginners chess class. It didn't take long until he fell in love with the game and was eager to outperform his peers. By the age of 12 Ritvars became the champion of Latvia in the age group under 12 years old and in the coming 6-7 years Ritvars regularly participated in both Latvian and international chess competitions and showed great results. During his career so far, he has won blitz chess games against such legendary players as Shakhriyan Mamedyarov, Nigel Short, Hikaru Nakamura and many others.
After a couple of years away from chess, Ritvars now is back in the game and ready to reach new heights. Just a couple of months ago, Ritvars scored his first International Master norm and the plan is to accomplish the IM title during the year 2017.
While Ritvars doesn't have a single player who he admires or is greatly influenced by, he with great interest follows most of the top tournaments and enjoys looking at the games of elite players like, Vladimir Kramnik, Richard Rapport, Wesley So and Magnus Carlsen. Altogether, in average Ritvars perhaps spends 1 hour per day on the different chess activities.
He wouldn't exactly agree with Bobby Fisher's saying that chess is life, as he believes there is more to life than that. However, in Ritvars' opinion the understanding of chess can greatly enhance one's life quality.
From childhood Ritvars has spent a great amount of time playing online chess, which has been great fun. While he does believe the online chess has a key role in the future of chess, there is a great deal of work left in order to secure that the fair play rules are followed in games played over the internet.
The last book he's read is Third Circle Theory: Purpose Through Observations by Pejman Ghadimi - great read!
As for the PRO chess league, he sees this as a possibility to play some decent chess with really strong players. And what better way to do this if not while being in a team with his chess friends and really strong players from Latvia. While Ritvars currently resides in Copenhagen, Denmark, he is born in Riga and therefore by all means is one of the Riga Magicians!