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My Great Predecessors IV
Titel: My Great Predecessors IV
Auteur: Kasparov G.
Uitgever: Everyman
Jaartal: 2004
Taal: Engels
Aantal pagina's:   496
Verkoopprijs:   Ä 33.00
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Catalogue This book brings together the two greatest names in the history of chess. The author. Garry Kasparov, is the world number one and. by common consent, the greatest player ever. The subject of the book. Bobby Fischer, is the only American to have become world champion and is probably the greatest natural talent the world has ever seen. In the period between 1955 and 1972 Fischer, more or less single-handedly, took on the might of the Soviet Chess Empire, and won. During this time Fischer scored astonishing successes the like of which had not been seen before. These included 11/11 in the 1963/64 US Championship and match victories (en route to the World Championship) by the score of 6-0 against two of the strongest players in the world. Mark Taimanov and Bent Larsen. The climax of Fischers campaign was his unforgettable match win in Reykjavik in 1972 against Boris Spassky. Fischer is almost equally well-known for his temperamental behaviour away from the board. He made extreme demands of all those around him including tournament organisers. When these demands were not met he often refused to play. The 1972 match against Spassky required the intervention of no less than Henry Kissinger to smooth things over. In 1975 when he was due to defend his title against Anatoly Karpov. Fischer was unable to agree terms with FIDE (the World Chess Federation) and was defaulted. After this he more or less gave up chess, playing only once, a return' match against Spassky in 1992. In this book, a must for all serious chessplayers. Kasparov analyses deeply Fischer's greatest games and assesses the legacy of this great American genius. Also under the microscope are the games of the other great Western players of Fischer's era - Samuel Reshevsky. Miguel Najdorf and Bent Larsen. ----------------------------------------------------------- The lives and games of ten chess kings of the past, from Steinitz to Spassky, have already been described, and now it is the turn of the eleventh - the phenomenal Fischer, who in the early 1970s succeeded on his own in smashing the Soviet chess machine. Before him, unsuccessful attempts had been made to do this by other bright stars from the West - Reshevsky, Najdorf, Larsen... Narrative logic - or perhaps Caissa herself - suggested the solution of devoting an indi­vidual volume to all these outstanding players. It stands to reason that Fischer did not emerge out of nothing. Not without reason was he called the best pupil of the Soviet Chess School, the flourishing of which led to the rapid devel­opment of the game in the mid-20th century, but with even more foundation he can be regarded as the successor to the great traditions of American chess, stemming from the legendary Morphy. Over the period of more than a hundred years separating their world triumphs, an almost continuous rise in the popularity of chess in America has been observed. It was here that Steinitz accomplished his unparalleled feats, playing five matches for the world championship between 1886 and 1894, and more important - expounding in his Interna­tional Chess Magazine (1885-91) and his fundamental work Modern Chess Instructor (1889) the teach­ings of the new, positional school. At the end of the 19th century this wave swept Pillsbury to­wards the top, followed in the early 20th century by Marshall. America became a serious chess centre and it was no accident that Lasker lived here for several years, publishing his famous Lasker's Chess Magazine (1904-09), just as it was no accident that the genius Capablanca appeared and grew up here, settling for a long time in New York. While the First World War was raging in Europe, in America tournament life continued, and imperceptibly, little-by-little, the foundation for a new breakthrough was laid. In the 1920s this process was accelerated by the sensational exhibitions of the child prodigy Sammy Reshevsky, a tour by Alekhine, the challenger to the chess throne, and especially the grandiose New York tournaments (1924 and 1927). And, as a result, in the early 1930s there appeared a whole group of strong masters - Kashdan, Horowitz, Steiner, Dake, Denker and others, to say nothing of the stars of world magnitude - Reshevsky and Fine (to whom one of the sections in this book is also devoted). Together with the veteran Marshall, the Americans won four successive Olympiads at that time. Meanwhile, behind the 'iron curtain' in the USSR, where chess enjoyed state and political support, the chess machine that after the Second World War was for a long time to conquer the whole world was rapidly gathering speed. The first direct confrontation, the USSR-USA radio match on ten boards (1945) ended in a crushing defeat for the Olympiad champions. 'What has happened to American chess?' wrote Arnold Denker at that time. 'Is it possible that the country which produced the brilliant Marshall, the resourceful Reshevsky and the encyclo­paedic Fine has gone back as much as the Russian trouncing would indicate? About 1932 this country had fifteen or twenty very talented young masters. What has happened to all these bud­ding stars? Is it possible that so much talent can have dwindled away disappointingly in a few years? The answer to the second question is a clear and unequivocal "Yes!" Why? Because professional chess requires a player's full time, and yet it does not assure him anywhere near an ade­quate income. Chess is a full time job, and we must treat it as such if we are to hold out own in world competition. The sooner the American chess public realizes this, the sooner we will regain our prestige as the leading nation in the world of chess.' Alas, the American chess public was in no hurry to understand this - judging at least by the fact that Fine was forced to withdraw from the world championship match-tournament (1948). After this Reshevsky remained practically alone against the Soviet cohort (subsequently his experience came in very useful to Fischer), Until the end of the 1950s he was the undisputed No. 1 in the West, although in the USA a new group of talented players had grown up: Evans, the Byrne brothers, Bisguier, Lombardy... The only player who could contest Reshevsky's leadership was the Argentine grandmaster Miguel Najdorf. The point is that in the post-war era another super-power was created on the chess map - Argentina, where many masters stayed on and settled after the Olympiad in Buenos Aires (1939). The strongest of them was Najdorf, who was the same age as Reshevsky and was also born in Poland, but left it 20 years later. These two - the modest, religious Reshevsky, and the cheerful, sociable Najdorf- introduced western colour into top-ranking chess, which was dominated by representatives of the USSR and the Eastern Bloc countries. Strictly speaking, both of them were amateurs, since they earned a living not from chess (it seems to me that the 1961 Reshevsky-Fischer match deserves to be called 'the last amateur against the first professional'). But the strength and natural talent of both were so great, that even when they were nearly 60 years old they were among the ten best grandmasters selected for the Rest of the World team in the 'Match of the Century' (1970). Wormy successors to the mighty veterans of the West appeared only in the late 1950s to early 1960s. The first to announce himself was the young Bobby Fischer, and then came the Dane Bent Larsen. Larsen's tournament successes and his fresh, inventive play from 1964 to 1970 en­abled him even to take from Fischer his 'lawful' first board in the aforementioned 'Match of the Century'. At that time only these two posed a threat to the Soviet hegemony. However, soon Fischer brilliantly showed that it was he who was destined to become the new world champion. His revolutionary breakthrough and tragic departure from chess are the main topic of this book. Garry Kasparov , November 2004 List of Content 005 Introduction: Stars of the West 007 1 Sammy, Miguel and Bent 007 Reshevsky 007 Olympian Long-liver 013 Second Coming 023 A bitter Pill 030 The Fine Enigma 049 The lone Warrior 068 Champion of 'the Rest of the World' 077 The last Chance 086 Seven-Times Champion 097 Finale 111 'I want to play and play...' 114 Najdorf 114 Don Miguel 116 Echo of Groningen 120 The last of the Mohicans 129 King's Indian Revelations 135 Hard-Hitting Veteran 142 'Chess is a Mirror of the Soul' 148 Larsen 148 The Danish Prince 155 Joining the Elite 168 At the Peak of his Career 181 Lessons in the 'Meran' 197 Against the two 'K's 206 2 Robert the Eleventh 206 The lone Genius 207 'He learned from God himself!' 219 European Debut 252 Adult Games 260 Duel of the Prodigies 281 Hat-Trick in Bled 291 'The Russian Pact' 307 Hello America! 317 Endurance Test 324 Hara-Kiri 336 He came, he saw, he conquered! 355 A vertical Ascent 369 The first Victim 394 Battle in Denver 406 The Miracles continue 429 Battle of the Gods 467 Abdication 478 The great Recluse 492 Bibliography 492 Index of Players 495 Index of Openings

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