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Friday, November 11, 2011

Reshevsky's 100th Anniversary

Reshevsky’s reputation was that of a positional player and  defensive specialist, but the 100th anniversary of the birth of Samuel Reshevsky, one of the greatest American players of all time, has never gotten the attention it should.  Reshevsky, who died in 1992, had the most remarkable careers of the pre-Fischer era.

A child prodigy born Nov. 26, 1911, in what was then the old Russian Empire, he won his first U.S. title in 1936 and his sixth and last in 1969, while playing top board for numerous U.S. Olympiad teams. Despite the need to finish his education and make a living Reshevsky was among the very best in the world in the 1930s and 1940s, and fell just short of winning the world championship in the face of the rising Soviet chess hegemony after World War II.

Despite his reputation as a positional grinder Reshevsky never would have made it without a talent for attack and for combinational play when the situation demanded it.

Hanon W. Russell conducted a two-part interview with him which you can read at Chess Café.

Part 1    Part 2

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