This book, the fifth in Garry Kasparov's magnificent history of the World Chess Championship, catalogues the post-Fischer period in the 1970's and early 1980's This period was dominated by Anatoly Karpov (world champion from 1975-1985) and his three-time challenger, Viktor Korchnoi.
Anatoly Karpov gained the right to challenge Bobby Fischer for the world title by winning through the Candidates series in 1974. As is well known, Fischer refused to defend the title and in 1975 Karpov became champion by default. Although he did not have to contest a Championship match to gain the title, Karpov proved that he was a worthy champion by winning virtually every major tournament over the next decade.
In this book, a must for all serious chessplayers, Kasparov analyses deeply Karpov's greatest games and assesses the legacy of this great Russian genius. Also under the microscope are the games of Viktor Korchnoi, who was at his peak during this period and twice challenged Karpov for his world title.
This work was originally envisioned as a single-volume collection of my most memorable games, annotated by me, à la Bobby Fischer's My 60 Memorable Games. However the more I delved into the past, the more things started to rise up from the recesses of my memory, which, along with deeper analysis and more detailed introductions to the games, made it more like an anthology of chess stories. Thankfully, my gracious editors decided to split the work into two volumes.
What you are going to find in this first volume is a selection of my most memorable battles on the chessboard during the first of two different periods. It covers the time from my arrival in the USA as an up-and-coming young talent in early 1989, acquiring the freedom to play in any open tournament in the world and quickly gaining precious experience to grow into a challenger for the World Championship in 1996. This period ended with my early retirement from the game to pursue other goals in life.
This is the second volume of my memorable games collection. Here you will find games that I played after my return to chess back in 2004. It had been eight years since my last tournament, and so much had changed for me. I had entered my first marriage and just graduated from Touro Law Center with an eye on my favorite subject, Intellectual Property, and on another new development at the time called cyber law, which dealt with issues related to the internet and international jurisdiction.
At the same time it represented an opportunity for me to return to something that I had devoted so much time and energy to, the game of chess. For the first time in my life I was free to pursue directions of my own choosing.
The decision was a difficult one, but finally I decided to return to chess, feeling that I could somehow positively influence both FIDE and the chess world in general. They were still split and had different world champions, the FIDE one, and the PCA one, which was the more prestigious of the two. The PCA World Champion was Mr. Kramnik, who had succeeded Mr. Kasparov as World Champion in the long line of world championship matches.
Clearly there were some triumphs and failures during this period of my chess career, but ultimately I feel that I have left a certain mark on the generation from which the world’s current top players have emerged.
Once again, in the games that follow, I try to share my vision of chess as a great intellectual battlefield where many factors play a role, including psychology and the science of computer home preparation. For me, there still exists the exciting journey to find the great truth of what is happening on the chess board, and the search for an even greater objective, the beauty of the game. With these in mind, I have selected these games, to share with you the knowledge that I have acquired so far.
Ivan Bukavshin, born in Rostov-on-Don in 1995, was a Russian chess prodigy. He was European U12, U14 and U16 champion and placed third in the world U16 championships among many other successes, gaining the Grandmaster title at just 16 years of age. Ivan finished third in the Aeroflot Open in 2015, behind Daniil Dubov and Ian Nepomniachtchi, where he put in a performance rating of 2803. Ivan achieved a series of 2700+ performances over 2013-2015. He tragically died in early 2016 at the age of 20.
This book, by his friend and coach Grandmaster Jakov Geller, takes a detailed look at Ivan’s life and career in 50 deeply annotated games and 14 fragments. Apart from Jakov, 20 other guest grandmasters annotate games in this book, including super GMs Dubov, Alexander Morozevich, Vladislav Artemiev, Vladimir Fedoseev, Maxim Matlakov, and Evgeny Alekseev. The list of Ivan’s opponents in these games includes Peter Svidler, Alexander Morozevich, Vladimir Fedoseev, Ernesto Inkariev, Richard Rapport, and Dmitry Andreikin.
Hein Donner (1927-1988) was a Dutch Grandmaster and one the greatest writers on chess of all time. He was born into a prominent Calvinistic family of lawyers in The Hague. His father, who had been the Minister of Justice and later became President of the Dutch Supreme Court, detected a keen legal talent in his son. But Hein opted for a bohemian lifestyle as a chess professional and journalist. He scored several excellent tournament victories but never quite fulfilled the promise of his chess talent.
Hein Donner developed from a chess player-writer into a writer-chess player. His provocative writings and his colourful persona made him a national celebrity during the roaring sixties. His book ‘The King’, a fascinating and often hilarious anthology spanning 30 years of chess writing, is a world-wide bestseller and features on many people’s list of favourite chess books.
The author Harry Mulisch, his best friend, immortalized Hein Donner in his magnum opus The Discovery of Heaven. In 2001 the book was adapted for film, with Stephen Fry playing the part that was based on Donner. Included in Hein Donner is the interview in which Harry Mulisch tells about his friendship with Donner.
After suffering a stroke at the age of 56, Donner lived his final years in a nursing home. He continued writing however, typing with one finger, and won one of the Netherlands’ most prestigious literary awards. Alexander Münninghoff has written a captivating biography of a controversial man and the turbulent time and age he lived in.
This book is about the greatest chess players who ever lived, who dominated their era and were looked upon as World Champions even at a time when this term, this very concept, did not yet exist. On the basis of a short biography, a selection of their most famous games and a brief characteristic of their playing style I will attempt to illuminate what made these great players great and what their significance is for the chess world. This will also give an overview of how chess itself has developed over the past two and a half centuries: how it has essentially remained the same, yet changed almost beyond recognition.
The engine has become the “Holy Cow” to which all chess players now pray regardless of their religious convictions or rating. Far from being a foe or rival it has become an invaluable helper, consultant and the highest of authorities. Since the highest of all oracles is soulless and cynical it is ready to help anyone ignoring opinions and preferences. Therefore, the task before each player is to use this dominant and universally accessible power to their particular advantage.
For the purpose of writing this book I decided to look at all the games Veselin has played from 1995 until the present, as there were many I didn’t know! I must say that, although seeing great moves from a 2800 player sounds normal, it was impossible not to be astonished by some of his games. Topalov is one of the kings of practical decisions in chess. He regards chess as more a sport than a science. If he thinks an idea will work over the board, the notion of risk is irrelevant to him. He wants to be on the attack and believes an objectively inferior position isn’t necessarily bad if his opponent needs to find several difficult defensive moves. “If that’s the only move for my opponent, let’s enter the line and see if he sees it!” is his philosophy. He never liked peace over the board or routine play. The moments where he has refused to repeat moves or has sacrificed something strictly out of intuition are countless. In short, Topalov’s aim has always been to hit hard and bring his own touch to the game, and I think he has succeeded!
The way a beginner develops into a strong chess player closely resembles the progress of the game of chess itself. This popular idea is the reason why many renowned chess instructors such as former World Champions Garry Kasparov and Max Euwe, emphasize the importance of studying the history of chess.
Willy Hendriks agrees that there is much to be learned from the pioneers of our game. He challenges, however, the conventional view on what the stages in the advancement of chess actually have been. Among the various articles of faith that Hendriks questions is Wilhelm Steinitz's reputation as the discoverer of the laws of positional chess.
In The Origin of Good Moves Hendriks undertakes a groundbreaking investigative journey into the history of chess. He explains what actually happened, creates fresh perspectives, finds new heroes, and reveals the real driving force behind improvement in chess: evolution.
This thought-provoking book is full of beautiful and instructive ‘new’ material from the old days. With plenty of exercises, the reader is invited to put themselves in the shoes of the old masters. Never before has the study of the history of chess been so entertaining and rewarding.
Levenfish describes in vivid detail the atmosphere of pre- and post-revolutionary Russia, giving first-hand impressions of some of the most famous names in early-twentieth-century chess, such as Lasker, Rubinstein, Alekhine and Capablanca – all of whom were personally known to him. Some of the stories stay long in the memory: descriptions of the hardships endured by players in the first USSR Championship that took place in the difficult years of the Civil War; of idyllic trips to the Caucasus and Crimea; of grim struggles for survival in the winter of 1941.
Soviet Outcast comprises Levenfish’s annotations to 79 of his finest games, translated from his Russian autobiography, plus extensive bonus material including several games compiled from other sources, mostly with annotations by Levenfish himself, as well as a 30-page Afterword by GM Jacob Aagaard. This is the first time Levenfish’s memoir has been published in English.
At the U.S. Championship in 1989, Stuart Rachels seemed bound for the cellar. Ranked last and holding no IM norms, the 20-year-old amateur from Alabama was expected to get waxed by the American top GMs of the day that included Seirawan, Gulko, Dzindzichashvili, deFirmian, Benjamin and Browne.
Instead, Rachels pulled off a gigantic upset and became the youngest U.S. Champion since Bobby Fischer. Three years later he retired from competitive chess, but he never stopped following the game.
In this wide-ranging, elegantly written, and highly personal memoir, Stuart Rachels passes on his knowledge of chess. Included are his duels against legends such as Kasparov, Anand, Spassky, Ivanchuk, Gelfand and Miles, but the heart of the book is the explanation of chess ideas interwoven with his captivating stories.
There are chapters on tactics, endings, blunders, middlegames, cheating incidents, and even on how to combat that rotten opening, the Réti. Rachels offers a complete and entertaining course in chess strategy. At the back are listed 110 principles of play—bits of wisdom that arise naturally in the book’s 24 chapters.
Every chess player will find it difficult to put this sparkling book down. As a bonus, it will make you a better player.
This book contains fifty illustrative games and a career overview of Chelyabinsk grandmaster Igor Kurnosov, who was tragically hit and killed by a car in 2013 at the age of just 28. At his last tournament prior to his death, Igor attained a super-grandmaster tournament performance rating in excess of 2700.
Kurnosov left an indelible mark on the chess world—he was a Russian youth champion, a member of the Russian national team that won the world student team championship and the Tomsk-400 team that finished first at the Russian championship. He won or placed highly at dozens of international tournaments.
The games in this book, with highly instructional commentary by Kurnosov’s friends and colleagues, or sometimes by Kurnosov himself, are filled with blistering attacks and subtle endgame play. They have been selected in part to demonstrate the progression of his career, rather than being his absolute best games. Igor had several signature openings, but he undoubtedly is best known in the chess world as a master of the Grunfeld Defense. According to Grandmaster Dmitry Bocharov in this book, Igor was one of the world’s leading experts in the Grunfeld. Igor was a sophisticated analyst, and many of his opening ideas are still relevant to this day. This book will be useful for both beginners and highly-rated players to improve.
Commentators in this book include such well-known grandmasters as Ernesto Inarkiev, Roman Ovechkin, Dmitry Kryakvin, Sergei Rublevsky, and Kateryna Lahno, while his opponents in these games include such names as Boris Gelfand, Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, Ian Nepomniachtchi, and Dmitry Andreikin.