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Wednesday, August 2, 2017

They Don't Play Them Like This Anymore

     I have posted on Sidney Bernstein before...HERE. After playing in his 8th US Championship in 1961 Bernstein quit playing OTB. But, when he and Hans Berliner served as coaches for the US team in 1964 in Tel Aviv he got bitten by the tournament bug again and resumed OTB play. 
     What I didn't mention was that Bernstein took up postal chess after his last championship tournament in 1961. In the preliminary round of the 5th Postal Chess Olympiad, Hans Berliner played board 1 and Bernstein was on board 2. The other players were John T. Westbrock and Fred Tears. Bernstein's score earned him a medal for the best board 2 score and in the finals he moved up to board 1 when Berliner decided not to play. Berliner had decided to concentrate on the world correspondence championship which, as you know, he won. 
Post card used in international play

     The US team fared poorly in the finals which started in 1965 and ended in 1968; they finished 8th out of 9 teams. In the following postal game which was played in the preliminary round of the V Postal Olympiad when Bernstein met his Polish opponent he misplayed the opening and was obliged to give up his Queen with only two Bishops as compensation, but thanks to a little careless play on the part of his opponent Bernstein went on to win! You just couldn't play like that today...engines, you know. Such a game as this one could never be played today. 

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