Monday, February 28, 2011

Paul Keres

Authored by my student Aushim

Born: January 7, 1916 at Narva, Estonia (former USSR)
Died: June 5, 1975

Important tournaments
Keres narrowly missed a chance at a world chess championship match on five occasions. He won the 1938 AVRO tournament, which led to negotiations for a World Championship match against champion Alexander Alekhine, but the match never took place due to World War II. Then after the war he was runner-up in the Candidates Tournament on four consecutive occasions.
Due to these and other strong results, many chess historians consider Keres the strongest player never to become World Chess Champion.
In the AVRO tournament 1938, Paul Keres tied with Fine for the first time, being ahead of star chess players like Mikhail botvinnic, Max Euwe, Reshevsky, Alekhine, Capablanca and Flohr.
AVRO was one of Keres finest tournaments. He then went on to beat Fine 1½–½ and proceeded to challenge Alexander Alekhine in the finals, but the match was stopped due to the world war II.

Great achievements
Keres won the exceptionally strong USSR chess championship three times. In 1947, he won at Leningrad. The field included every top Soviet player except Botvinnik. In 1950, he won at Moscow, against a field which was only slightly weaker than in 1947. Then in 1951, he won again at Moscow, against a super-class field which included Efim Geller, Petrosian, Smyslov, Botvinnik, Yuri Averbakh, David Bronstein, Mark Taimanov, Lev Aronin, Salo Flohr, Igor Bondarevsky, and Alexander Kotov. This was the peak of his career and was nicknamed ‘the crown of chess’.

Chess style
In his early days, Paul Keres was known for a brilliant attacking style. His playing matured after playing correspondence chess extensively. English Opening, King's English Variation, Two Knights Variation and Keres variation were his favourite openings.

I like Paul Keres as he was a very aggressive player, pretty much modern at his times and was one of the few players to win a chess championship three times in a row.

Details on Wiki & ChessGames

Biography on SupremeChess & CMCoach

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