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qpawn
14-02-2006, 08:37 AM
Who is the greatest who was never the greatest?

I am only including past players with the exception of Korchnoi who is "past it" in another sense lol.

I think Rubinstein was the greatest one.

pballard
14-02-2006, 08:48 AM
Who is the greatest who was never the greatest?

I am only including past players with the exception of Korchnoi who is "past it" in another sense lol.

I think Rubinstein was the greatest one.

You forgot to mention Keres.

Carl Gorka
14-02-2006, 09:43 AM
I would say Korchnoi of the players you mention, but Keres and Fine should be on the list.

Davidflude
14-02-2006, 09:59 AM
It is very suspicious how he never quite managed to qualify for the World Championship match.

The stories about the Bronstein Botvinnick match are astonishing.

McTaggart
14-02-2006, 10:11 AM
It is very suspicious how he never quite managed to qualify for the World Championship match.

The stories about the Bronstein Botvinnick match are astonishing.


Absolutely correct! Keres was leant on heavily not to beat Botwinnik when push came to shove...ditto Bronstein, during the World Championship match..Bronstein has hinted at pressure in several of his articles( can't quite remember which ones) although to be fair,it must be said that he did not like Botwinnik very much. Apart from these two stand-outs,Fine and Rubenstein would have to be considered....

Spiny Norman
14-02-2006, 10:14 AM
My vote goes to Korchnoi ... he got very, close multiple times. But I agree that Keres and Bronstein are also very worthy candidates.

Ian Rout
14-02-2006, 10:51 AM
You could also add Anand and/or Kramnik, depending on whether you believe they actually were World Champion. Probably there is not much of a case for Bogulyubov or Reti on the list of candidates, although both had their moments.

Schlechter, like Bronstein, lost out by a drawn match so may also deserve to be on the list.

amos burn
14-02-2006, 11:35 AM
i would have to vote for rubinstein
he never lost a match if i remember correct

Lucena
14-02-2006, 11:43 AM
If I am not mistaken shouldn't this be in "general chess chat" not "non-chess"?

Davidflude
14-02-2006, 12:28 PM
Schlechter, like Bronstein, lost out by a drawn match so may also deserve to be on the list.

Schlechter was as solid as a brick dunny. The chess historians still argue about
various aspects of his match with Lasker.

Alan Shore
14-02-2006, 01:24 PM
If I am not mistaken shouldn't this be in "general chess chat" not "non-chess"?

Yeah, hard to see how this is non-chess, lol.

Anyway, yeah.. Keres for sure. Bad omission.

Oepty
14-02-2006, 02:11 PM
How about Paul Morphy. He must be right up there as well. Keres and Rubinstien do stand out though.
Scott

Alan Shore
14-02-2006, 02:18 PM
How about Paul Morphy. He must be right up there as well. Keres and Rubinstien do stand out though.
Scott

Morphy was the world champion, just not 'officially'. As were Staunton and Anderssen.

pballard
14-02-2006, 02:46 PM
IMO it's important to look at who was a challenger, or challenger strength, for a long period, not just a short time. By that measure, Keres and Korchnoi stand out by a mile.

Oepty
14-02-2006, 02:47 PM
Morphy was the world champion, just not 'officially'. As were Staunton and Anderssen.

Morphy is not officially recognised as being the world champion so he never was. Being the best player in the world is not the same thing.
Scott

Alan Shore
14-02-2006, 03:00 PM
Morphy is not officially recognised as being the world champion so he never was. Being the best player in the world is not the same thing.
Scott

If you want to toy with semantics, fine. However, I don't think that was the intent of the question.

Igor_Goldenberg
14-02-2006, 03:11 PM
I'd say Tarrash, Keres and Kortchnoi. These are the players that at their peak nearly dominated the chess world, but did not quite made it.

Other players, while being close to the title, did not demonstrate exceptionally high result for a extended period of time (e.g getting close to winning a match against the champion, but not leading chess world in tournament, or winning few tournament, but not having stable results, etc.)

My vote went to Tarrash because during the last few years of Steinitz rein he was clearly number 1 (until Lasker skyrocketed to the top). His tournament results were outstanding. Had he played Steinitz, he'd be a favourite.

Kortchnoi and Keres, despite exceptional results, did not overcome reining champions at the time.

Bill Gletsos
14-02-2006, 03:11 PM
Keres and Fine have been added as options.

Oepty
14-02-2006, 03:15 PM
If you want to toy with semantics, fine. However, I don't think that was the intent of the question.

It is not semantics, it is about right and wrong. I'm right and you are wrong :)
Scott

Denis_Jessop
14-02-2006, 03:49 PM
It is not semantics, it is about right and wrong. I'm right and you are wrong :)
Scott

If it was about semantics, Efim Bogolyubov would stand out a mile, both for size and beer-drinking capacity.


:lol: :doh:

DJ

pballard
14-02-2006, 04:06 PM
I'd say Tarrash, Keres and Kortchnoi. These are the players that at their peak nearly dominated the chess world, but did not quite made it.


Some years ago I wrote an article nominating those 3: on the basis that they had been champion/challenger strength for an extended period of time (15 years or more, I think). For this thread I changed my mind, deciding that maybe Tarrasch wasn't quite at the top for 15 years (by the time of the Lasker match in 1908 it seems he wasn't, but it's hard to say when he slipped because less chess was played back then); but it's interesting to find someone else who independently arrived at the same list, albeit with slightly different criteria.

Alan Shore
14-02-2006, 06:31 PM
Keres and Fine have been added as options.

Thanks Bill.. but can someone change my vote from 'other' to 'Keres' then? Don't think I'm able to edit my choice.

Alan Shore
14-02-2006, 06:35 PM
It is not semantics, it is about right and wrong. I'm right and you are wrong :)
Scott

Not at all - the question is who is the greatest never to be world champion, which assumes the existence of a world champion title to not be one.

It's like saying who was the greatest Cardinal never to be Pope but not excluding all who existed before the offical formation of the Catholic Church, which would make no sense.

Bill Gletsos
14-02-2006, 06:47 PM
Thanks Bill.. but can someone change my vote from 'other' to 'Keres' then? Don't think I'm able to edit my choice.Done.

Kevin Bonham
14-02-2006, 09:13 PM
I'm excluding Anand from my consideration. I've leant heavily on chessmetrics to inform my choices.

Using World Championship results too heavily to determine who was the best player never to be World Champion is a fallacy. In the case of many pre-1950 players the reason they were never World Champion is that they did not get a decent opportunity to challenge while at the peak of their form.

If you look at the data at Chessmetrics, Lasker's long reign becomes incredibly shoddy. During some of the gaps between his title defences he had some serious form slumps and would have been caned by Pillsbury or Maroczy between 1903-6 and Rubenstein between 1912-4. None of these players ever got a shot. Of them, Rubenstein was a major force for the longest.

Najdorf and Tarrasch are two others who were very strong but didn't get a shot when at the peak of their powers. Tarrasch got his only when past his best and Najdorf after not being invited in 1948 (why not?) was out of form by 1950. Then we get into the well-discussed cases of Reshevsky and Keres - at least we can hold it against them that they had shots and missed them, although in Keres' case this is contentious.

Bronstein got a shot and drew a match for the World Champs, and there is a case that he was the strongest player in the world for a couple of years (1950-51) and he had a long career at the top. But not at the very top, which is the main point against him.

Korchnoi, for the longevity of his super-strength, is the next most obvious candidate. But it's hard to say he was ever clearly the best in the world.

Another name (albeit one who has had plenty of shots) worth a mention is Ivanchuk. Very strong by the standards of his day for a very long time but had the bad luck to live in an era dominated by two super-champions.

I think Rubenstein has the strongest claim.

pballard
14-02-2006, 10:01 PM
I'm excluding Anand from my consideration. I've leant heavily on chessmetrics to inform my choices.

Using World Championship results too heavily to determine who was the best player never to be World Champion is a fallacy. In the case of many pre-1950 players the reason they were never World Champion is that they did not get a decent opportunity to challenge while at the peak of their form.

If you look at the data at Chessmetrics, Lasker's long reign becomes incredibly shoddy. During some of the gaps between his title defences he had some serious form slumps and would have been caned by Pillsbury or Maroczy between 1903-6 and Rubenstein between 1912-4. None of these players ever got a shot. Of them, Rubenstein was a major force for the longest.


I have some problems with chessmetrics. It does not seem to account for the players who peaked for the events which mattered. As a case in point, Petrosian drifts down in the 3 years after winning the world title in 1963 - but comes good for the important chess in 1966. Perhaps it was similar with Lasker. I've no idea what the weak results were which caused that dip in 1911-1914, but I know he won the St. Petersburg tournament in 1914 ahead of the world's leading players. I see Tarrasch (along with Maroczy) were 100 points above Lasker in 1906, but (based on the caning Lasker gave Tarrasch in 1908) I don't think they would have beaten him.

Kevin Bonham
14-02-2006, 10:45 PM
I have some problems with chessmetrics. It does not seem to account for the players who peaked for the events which mattered.

This is a valid criticism and an issue with rating systems of any kind as a means of assessing a player's "greatness".

I've looked at some of Lasker's results more carefully and a somewhat different picture emerges.

On the Lasker slumps, in 1903 he was beaten by Chigorin 3.5-2.5 in a match after playing little chess in the previous three years while doing his doctorate. Chessmetrics scones him 113 points for this poor result and he doesn't get them back until his massacre of Marshall. The 1912-14 case is similar - he was hardly playing at all during this period. Chessmetrics takes 150 points off him for very little in this time, then gives it back when he wins St Petersberg. I suggest chessmetrics' assessments are oversensitive in these cases.

So I'll go back on what I said above and say instead that we just don't really know whether Pillsbury, Maroczy or Rubenstein could have socked it to Lasker during their peak - they never got the chance and there's not enough evidence either way. As for Tarrasch, he had a total shocker in Nuremberg 1906 and looking at his subsequent results there seems a strong case that he was on the way down when Lasker crushed him.

That tilts the balance more in favour of Bronstein.

Igor_Goldenberg
15-02-2006, 08:39 AM
This is a valid criticism and an issue with rating systems of any kind as a means of assessing a player's "greatness".

I've looked at some of Lasker's results more carefully and a somewhat different picture emerges.

On the Lasker slumps, in 1903 he was beaten by Chigorin 3.5-2.5 in a match after playing little chess in the previous three years while doing his doctorate. Chessmetrics scones him 113 points for this poor result and he doesn't get them back until his massacre of Marshall. The 1912-14 case is similar - he was hardly playing at all during this period. Chessmetrics takes 150 points off him for very little in this time, then gives it back when he wins St Petersberg. I suggest chessmetrics' assessments are oversensitive in these cases.

So I'll go back on what I said above and say instead that we just don't really know whether Pillsbury, Maroczy or Rubenstein could have socked it to Lasker during their peak - they never got the chance and there's not enough evidence either way. As for Tarrasch, he had a total shocker in Nuremberg 1906 and looking at his subsequent results there seems a strong case that he was on the way down when Lasker crushed him.

That tilts the balance more in favour of Bronstein.

Doubt anyone would be able to beat Lasker in earlier 1900th.
Tarrash was at his peak in early- mid 1890th. Steinitz ofered him a match which he should've taken - to most likely become second world champion.

Don't forgrt we live in a different time. Back then "world champion" title did not mean as much as through the 20th century (until the very end of it:) ). That could be one of the reason why it wasn't very important for Tarrash to play Steinitz. Could it be that he considered him to be the best and did not care until Lasker emerged?

As for Bronstein - he was super grandmaster for a period of time, but never leading world player. He did not dominate candidate tournament in 1950 (Boleslavsky did!), played Botvinnik after the later had 3 year break - and did not manage to win.

Exceptionally strong grandmaster - but hardly world champion material.

Carl Gorka
15-02-2006, 09:27 AM
Korchnoi, for the longevity of his super-strength, is the next most obvious candidate. But it's hard to say he was ever clearly the best in the world.



I voted Korchnoi based on his results and strength over a period of time, and of course his cracks at the World Championship. Whether he was clearly the best in the World isn't the issue as it's a rather subjective matter. For example, there have been plenty of World Champions who may have been considered not clearly the best player in the world at any given time, but who have managed to hold the title. Korchnoi was certainly one of the top 10 for 30+ years and among the top one or two for periods of time. Only Keres comes close to this.

qpawn
15-02-2006, 12:22 PM
First, I am very impressed by the degree of thought people are putting into this!

Second, I think that if all thses players were at their peak and put in a round robin tournament against each other then Rubinstein would be my pick to win it. At his best Rubinstein was surely capable of a degree of both positional and tactical brilliance that puts the others to shame. For instance that brilliant game in which Rubinstein sacrificed queen and rooks and Hans Kmoch gave some of the moves a !!! :) I can't recall the opponent [Bauer?] but in any case it was a "modern" brilliancy in its positional design with the 2 bishops raking into white's kingside, before their power was unleashed in a combination equal in depth and elegance with any by Alekhine or Tal.

By the way I am surprised that everyone has forgotten about Bent Larsen. I nearly put him on the list because many people saw him as the greatest player outside Russia for a period of time.

Kevin Bonham
15-02-2006, 01:59 PM
As for Bronstein - he was super grandmaster for a period of time, but never leading world player. He did not dominate candidate tournament in 1950 (Boleslavsky did!), played Botvinnik after the later had 3 year break - and did not manage to win.

Boleslavsky and Bronstein tied on +6. Bronstein narrowly beat Boleslavsky in their match the same year.

It seems that chessmetrics' way of treating inactive world champions is actually badly flawed, eg it rates Bronstein as best in the world for 18 months but only because Botvinnik was inactive at the time.

I was looking for a non-world-champion who could be clearly said to have been the best in the world at some stage. It's surprisingly difficult to find such a player. In that case Korchnoi, for having been close to the best for such a long period of time, should probably go to the top of the heap.

(*changes mind on this yet again!*)

pballard
15-02-2006, 02:49 PM
Second, I think that if all thses players were at their peak and put in a round robin tournament against each other then Rubinstein would be my pick to win it. At his best Rubinstein was surely capable of a degree of both positional and tactical brilliance that puts the others to shame. For instance that brilliant game in which Rubinstein sacrificed queen and rooks and Hans Kmoch gave some of the moves a !!! :) I can't recall the opponent [Bauer?] but in any case it was a "modern" brilliancy in its positional design with the 2 bishops raking into white's kingside, before their power was unleashed in a combination equal in depth and elegance with any by Alekhine or Tal.


Yes, I remember playing over that game. Brilliant, no doubt. But I feel unqualified to evaluate the standard of play, so I'm going by results.

This page has a very complete list of chess tournaments thru history: http://www3.sympatico.ca/g.giffen/1900-49.htm

Scanning that page, I note that Rubinstein's "5 tournament wins in a year" (1912) is not as impressive as it sounds, because none of the tournaments included Lasker or Capablanca. In fact it looks like he never finished ahead of either of them in a tournament.

Of course the same comment can be levelled at Keres or Korchnoi: always near the top, never quite there. (Leaving aside allegations of them both being the victims of Soviet cheating). But given their longevity, it still seems to me to be between those two.



By the way I am surprised that everyone has forgotten about Bent Larsen. I nearly put him on the list because many people saw him as the greatest player outside Russia for a period of time.

Because, great player that he was, he wasn't even the best nearly-champion of his era. We can discuss Rubenstein and Tarrasch because we really don't know how good they were. I think we can say with a fair degree of certainty that Larsen was not as good as Korchnoi. (I think for the same reason there are no votes for Reshevsky, being clearly a peg or two below Keres).

peter_knight
02-03-2006, 09:04 AM
rubinstein

Kevin Bonham
02-02-2008, 12:31 PM
*bump*

Just bumping this as people have been talking about starting such a thread in the shoutbox - here it is, it already exists!

Capablanca-Fan
02-02-2008, 07:54 PM
On the Lasker slumps, in 1903 he was beaten by Chigorin 3.5-2.5 in a match after playing little chess in the previous three years while doing his doctorate.
That doesn't count. Lasker had to play the gross Rice Gambit (http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Lab/7378/ricegamb.htm) every time to get Prof. Rice's money.


Chessmetrics scones him 113 points for this poor result and he doesn't get them back until his massacre of Marshall.
Even counting such a match is a shortcoming of ChessMetrics. It's like counting any sort of theme tournament.


The 1912–14 case is similar — he was hardly playing at all during this period. Chessmetrics takes 150 points off him for very little in this time, then gives it back when he wins St Petersberg. I suggest chessmetrics' assessments are oversensitive in these cases.
The fact that Lasker could play so strongly after a layoff suggests that he would have beaten most of his opponents in the meantime.


So I'll go back on what I said above and say instead that we just don't really know whether Pillsbury, Maroczy or Rubenstein could have socked it to Lasker during their peak — they never got the chance and there's not enough evidence either way.
I can't see Maróczy having enough fight to beat Lasker, even though he was a superb player. He had very good scores against many top players, but not against world champions: Wilhelm Steinitz +1-2=1, Emanuel Lasker +1-4=2, José Raúl Capablanca +0-3=5 and Alexander Alekhine +0-6=5; except for Max Euwe whom he beat +4-3=15. But Maróczy's defensive style was often more than sufficient to beat the leading attacking players of his day such as Joseph Henry Blackburne (+5-0=3), Mikhail Chigorin (+6-4=7), Frank Marshall (+11-6=8), David Janowski (+10-5=5), Efim Bogoljubov (+7-4=4) and Frederick Yates (+8-0=1).

Rubinstein v Lasker would have been a keen struggle but I would pick Lasker to win.


As for Tarrasch, he had a total shocker in Nuremberg 1906 and looking at his subsequent results there seems a strong case that he was on the way down when Lasker crushed him.
But as IG said, he probably was the best in the world towards the close of the Steinitz reign, and turned down a chance for a title match.

Capablanca-Fan
02-02-2008, 07:58 PM
Scanning that page, I note that Rubinstein's "5 tournament wins in a year" (1912) is not as impressive as it sounds, because none of the tournaments included Lasker or Capablanca. In fact it looks like he never finished ahead of either of them in a tournament.
True. Rubinstein's greatness is better illustrated in his best games.


Of course the same comment can be levelled at Keres or Korchnoi: always near the top, never quite there. (Leaving aside allegations of them both being the victims of Soviet cheating). But given their longevity, it still seems to me to be between those two.
I doubt that cheating can explain it.


I think we can say with a fair degree of certainty that Larsen was not as good as Korchnoi.
Agreed.


(I think for the same reason there are no votes for Reshevsky, being clearly a peg or two below Keres).
Why "clearly"? Reshevsky had a plus score against Keres, +6-4=9 according to Chessgames.com (http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chess.pl?yearcomp=exactly&year=&playercomp=either&pid=21922&player=&pid2=11209&player2=&movescomp=exactly&moves=&opening=&eco=&result=).

Kevin Bonham
02-02-2008, 07:58 PM
That doesn't count. Lasker had to play the gross Rice Gambit (http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Lab/7378/ricegamb.htm) every time to get Prof. Rice's money.

I was not aware of this.


Even counting such a match is a shortcoming of ChessMetrics. It's like counting any sort of theme tournament.

Agreed, rating such a so-called match is an absolute joke.

Igor_Goldenberg
04-02-2008, 08:38 AM
Boleslavsky and Bronstein tied on +6. Bronstein narrowly beat Boleslavsky in their match the same year.


two rounds before the end Boleslavsky lead by a whole point. Then he made two short draws, not expecting Bronstein to catch him (which he did by beating Keres in the last round!).
Thios is not to say that Boleslavsky was the strongest player (it was his best result never repeated), just to show that Bronstein did not dominate chess scene.

The reason I picked Tarrash is not because I beleive he was greater then Keres or Kortchnoi (among those three I think Kortchnoi was actually the best). Keres and Kortchnoi, despite their longetivity and excellent results, were always superseeded by someone else (Keres by Botvinnik and at various time by others, Kortchnoi by Petrosian and Spassky in 60s and Karpov in 70s, not counting Fisher).
But Tarrash, even though briefly, was dominating chess world at his pick between late 1880-s and early 1890-s, winning almost every major tournament. Lasker's arrival to the chess scene pushed him back, then his results declined.

tanc
06-02-2008, 02:06 PM
My vote goes to Viktor The Terrible.

I exclude Fine on the basis of like many other "great" authors (ala Eric Schiller), he succumbed by writing a book about Bobby Fischer (cf. "Bobby Fischer’s Conquest of the World Chess Championship" by Reuben Fine) :uhoh:

Here's a couple of reviews of that book:
http://www.jeremysilman.com/book_reviews_js/js_bobby_fischer_conq_worl.html
http://isolanis.com/2007/04/book-review-bobby-fischers-conquest-of-the-world-chess-championship-by-reuben-fine/

CameronD
06-02-2008, 02:14 PM
My vote goes to Viktor The Terrible.

I exclude Fine on the basis of like many other "great" authors (ala Eric Schiller), he succumbed by writing a book about Bobby Fischer (cf. "Bobby Fischer’s Conquest of the World Chess Championship" by Reuben Fine) :uhoh:

Here's a couple of reviews of that book:
http://www.jeremysilman.com/book_reviews_js/js_bobby_fischer_conq_worl.html
http://isolanis.com/2007/04/book-review-bobby-fischers-conquest-of-the-world-chess-championship-by-reuben-fine/

I question Eric Schillr beng a great author. I've read that we should avoid his books like the plaque.

MichaelBaron
06-02-2008, 02:30 PM
www.chessmetrics.com has all the historical ratings. (including performance ratings achieved in the major events). I guess whoever is rated highest on the site - was the greatest

Igor_Goldenberg
06-02-2008, 02:44 PM
www.chessmetrics.com has all the historical ratings. (including performance ratings achieved in the major events). I guess whoever is rated highest on the site - was the greatest
Chessmetrics has a lot of shortcomings, some of them mentioned in this thread

Kevin Bonham
06-02-2008, 08:17 PM
I question Eric Schillr beng a great author. I've read that we should avoid his books like the plaque.

tanc was also questioning it and rightly so - his use of "great" with quote marks round it, in context and given the nature of reviews for the Fine book he compared to the "work" of Schiller, was clearly sarcastic.

Capablanca-Fan
23-10-2008, 09:00 AM
Schlechter was as solid as a brick dunny. The chess historians still argue about various aspects of his match with Lasker.
There's quite a good article by Bill Forster in the latest New Zealand Chess.

Capablanca-Fan
23-10-2008, 09:08 AM
I exclude Fine on the basis of like many other "great" authors (ala Eric Schiller), he succumbed by writing a book about Bobby Fischer (cf. "Bobby Fischer’s Conquest of the World Chess Championship" by Reuben Fine) :uhoh:
Irrelevant to whether he was a great player. He was extremely strong in the late 1930s, making plus scores against Lasker, Alekhin and Botvinnik.

Sheroff
07-07-2010, 07:50 PM
I always thought Keres was unlucky not to win the title. A very formidable all-round player. Korchnoi's loss to Karpov was largely due to the superior work of Karpov's seconds, especially Geller, who was instrumental in the preparation of Karpov's crushing win against Korchnoi's Dragon variation, and other surprises ( this in no way takes away from Karpov's unreal technical skills).

Rubinstein was an extraordinary talent. One has to feel sorry for Morphy - there was no one on the entire planet in his league, while he was playing.
But of course I still have a soft spot for Nezhmetdinov - who could be beaten by lesser lights at any time, but had a plus score against world champions, and provided some of the most beautiful chess ever played.

My first chess book ever was "The Middle Games of Paul Keres" (he wrote his careeer as a 3-part series). Awesome stuff. Aside from Botvinnik, who he seemed to have consideraqbletrouble with, he could (and did) crush them all.
I have been told by an Estonian that his picture still features on Estonian currency, and he is still revered there.

Kevin Casey

ER
07-07-2010, 09:13 PM
Estonia, apart from Paul Keres, has produced excellent chess players throughout the years amongst others
Jaan Ehlvest
Lionel Kieseritzky
R.K. Kieseritzky (I don't know which one of these two is the great one)
Vladas Mikėnas
Ivo Nei
and our very own (ok as in Australasia very own ;))
Ortvin Sarapu

Capablanca-Fan
08-07-2010, 03:02 AM
I always thought Keres was unlucky not to win the title.
Unfortunately, I doubt that he was ever the best player in the world. In the 1940s, after his great tie at AVRO, he lost three times to Alekhine, world champ but below his best.


But of course I still have a soft spot for Nezhmetdinov — who could be beaten by lesser lights at any time, but had a plus score against world champions, and provided some of the most beautiful chess ever played.
Indeed, but he had a bad record against strong defenders Korchnoi and Petrosyan (+0−3=2 each). Averbakh claimed in an interview in The Day Kasparov Quit:

"Nezhmetdinov … if he had the attack, could kill anybody, including Tal. But my score against him was something like 8˝–0˝ because I did not give him any possibility for an active game. In such cases he would immediately start to spoil his position because he was looking for complications."
Mind you, ChessGames.com has only +2=2 to Averbakh (http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chess.pl?pid=37199&pid2=20559).


My first chess book ever was "The Middle Games of Paul Keres" (he wrote his careeer as a 3-part series). Awesome stuff.
I agree: great games, great annotations.


Aside from Botvinnik, who he seemed to have considerabletrouble with, he could (and did) crush them all.
I have been told by an Estonian that his picture still features on Estonian currency, and he is still revered there.
Correct (http://www.eestipank.info/pub/en/yldine/pangatahed/pangatahed/_5.html).

Superbear
24-08-2010, 02:08 PM
I will go for Viktor Korchnoi. He got the Grandmaster title way back in 1956 and has won several major tournaments but not the grand title. He was a candidate for world championships on ten occasions!