Monday, August 23, 2010

Mikhail Tal

Mikhail Tal was the greatest attacking Grandmaster of all time.

Born in Riga, Latvia on Nov 9, 1936, he learned chess while watching his father. In 1951 he qualified for the Latvian championship and by 1954 became a Soviet Master. By winning the Soviet Championship in 1957, he got the title of Grandmaster.

He defeated Botvinnik in the famous 1960 match to become the youngest (till then) World Champion at the age of 23. His highest ELO rating was 2705 achieved in 1980.

Tal won several strong tournaments like Bled 1961, Hastings 1963, Tbilisi 1969, Novi Sad 1974, Montreal 1979 and Buenos Aires 1991.

His playing style was magical. He often sacrificed material for attack and created vast complications in which his opponents would get lost. During his later years, he adopted a more positional style.

He was troubled by health problems throughout the better part of his career, which seriously affected his chess results. Every time he would recover and score another victory.

He was also a profilific journalist of repute (editor of Latvian chess magazine) and authored some famous chess books (Life and Games of Tal). He was a popular person among fellow masters who would be obsessed with blitz chess even during free time.

He died of kidney failure on June 28, 1992 in Moscow.

Tal on
Wiki & Chessgames
Best Games of Tal
Play through over 3000 games of Tal

Check this win over Spassky which was awarded the Brilliancy Prize

No comments:

Post a Comment