whiteshark: Little was heard of Christi following his disappearance from the Malaysian chess scene in 1989 after winning the national championship a record five times.
After nine years of obscurity, from 2002 to 2010, Christi is back with a new move -- this time wearing the 1Malaysia badge and charging around like a knight with a mission to effect social changes.
But this time you see Christi not as the chess champion but as opinion giver, arguer and adviser.
I inquired where he had been and what he had been up to all these years.
Christi revealed that he had been travelling often to other countries as a feng shui consultant.
I tried putting the pieces of info together -- a chess master becoming a feng shui master, chess geometry making way for geomancy.
Though chess and feng shui are as different as cheese and chalk, Christi has turned out to be master of both.
He said there is something common between them; chess is about predicting the opponent's moves and countering while feng shui is also about looking ahead and taking the right steps.
< Christi has represented Malaysia in the World Chess Olympiad in Buenos Aires (Argentina), Lucerne (Switzerland), Thessaloniki (Greece) and Dubai.
He was Malaysia's first Fide Master after earning a rating from the World Chess Federation and also had the distinction of beating Anand Viswanathan, the current world champion from India, in an IM tournament in New Delhi in 1985.
< "You really beat Anand Viswanathan?" I asked Christi in a really-I-don't-quite-believe-you tone of voice.
< "I thrashed Anand in 30 minutes," he replied.
Wow, I would say that is something great for Christi to thump his chest.
But for Christi, 53, his world is no longer about 64 black and white squares but a political landscape coloured by dark clouds.
Christi says he is ready to speak out for Malaysians. Boldly printed on his calling card is the proclamation: "I am the New Voice of 26 million Rakyat!"
Admitting that he was apolitical when he was a serious chess player in the 1980s, Christi looks at the world differently today.
Away from the chessboard, he sees political pawns, king makers, sacrifices, manoeuvres, and end games of a different kind.
Christi, whose specialty is divination through feng shui, has indicated he is keen to help BN checkmate its rivals in the coming general election. He sees himself as a foreteller who makes predictions for 2012 -- its big conflicts and big changes.