Sunday Mail, April 8 2001


Two of the great survivors celebrated birthdays late last month - Vassily Smyslov turned 80 and Viktor Korchnoi 70. Smyslov became the seventh world champion by defeating Mikhail Botvinnik in 1957, scoring +6 =13 3. He was also challenger against Botvinnik in 1954, but Botvinnik retained the title when the match was drawn +7 =10 7. His career spanned some 60 international events between 1939 and 1990, rarely finishing below fourth and winning or sharing first place in 25. He represented the Soviet Union in nine Olympiads, scoring +69 =42 2.

Korchnoi played in around 70 strong international tournaments between 1954 and 1990, finishing below third only seven times and winning or tying for first in 40. Twice he won the right to challenge the world champion Anatoly Karpov, in 1978 and 1981, but lost each attempt. He is still an active player, regularly collecting prizemoney in major events.

Portisch  Smyslov
Moscow 1967
Nimzo-Indian Defence, Smyslov Variation

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 c5 5.Nf3 0-0 6.Bd3 d5 7.0-0 dxc4 8.Bxc4 Qe7 9.a3 Ba5 10.Qc2 Bd7 11.Bd3 Rc8 12.Bd2 cxd4 13.exd4 h6 14.Rfe1 Qd8 15.Qc1 Qf8 16.Ne5 Nc6 17.Nxd7 Nxd7 18.Re4 f5 19.Re1 Nxd4 20.Qd1 Nf6 21.Be3 e5 22.Qa4 Bb6 23.Bxd4 exd4 24.Ne2 Ne4 25.Nf4 Rc6 26.g3 Qf7 27.Bb1 Kh8 28.Ba2 Qf6 29.Bd5 d3 30.Bxc6 Bxf2+ 31.Kh1 Qxc6 32.Qxc6 bxc6 33.Red1 d2 34.Kg2 Bd4 35.Rab1 Rb8 36.Ne2 Bxb2 37.Kf3 Rb3+ 38.Kf4 Nd6 39.Rxd2 g5 mate

The Darling Down Open, traditionally held every Easter, is on next weekend in Toowoomba  details from www.caq.org.au or Keven Duncan on 4635 1255.