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Sigeman 2006

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Jan Timman is a round away from a clear victory in the 14th annual event in Sweden. The official site is here, with handy game summaries. Timman has an impressive +5 undefeated score and a full-point lead over Hillarp Persson. It's always great to see a veteran in good form in a classical time control event. (He took two 14-move draw rest days with white. Repulsive, but less so when the perpetrator is over 50.) Timman's 2800 performance isn't coming against the Wijk aan Zee crowd, but, like most veterans, when on song he can still show why he spent several decades as one of the world's best. No longer being frequently sponsored by Margaux and Burgundy can't hurt. Sure, a couple of his wins came after escaping dangerously inferior positions, but the winner always needs some luck.

Where's the rest of Timman's peer group, you ask? His generation is largely remembered for being relentlessly stomped by Karpov, who, like Timman, was born in 1951. Beliavsky is still hanging on in the top 100. Huebner is also in there, although he doesn't play often. Talk about a young man's game (or woman's, gracias to Polgar), only four players in the top 20 were born in the 60's or earlier. (Anand, Ivanchuk, Gelfand, Bareev)


In addition to his outstanding OTB accomplishments over the years, he has also been (as is well known) the Editor-in-Chief of arguably the best chess magazine ever published for over twenty years now. I enjoy each issue of New-In-Chess and I thank him for that.

I just checked the final results and Timman drew his last game to easily win by a full point. Congratulations to him and to echo Chesstraveler thanks for the work at NIC and the great books. I recently bought my first Timman book and am planning on the next two already.

Looking at TWIC I see that the M-Tel Masters is about to start and what a lineup they have! Topalov, Anand, Svidler, Ponomariov, Bacrot and Kamsky,whew! I'll be watching that one here at the english site the organisers have so generously provided. http://www.mtelmasters06.com/en/

I think it will be fascinating to watch Kamsky to see what he has been able to get together since Corus. Good Luck Kamsky!

When asked to name top GMs from the 60s we eagerly type up Fischer, Tal, Spassky, Petrosian, Geller, Stein, Korchnoi, Larsen. When asked to name top GMs from the 20s, we can think of the three world champions, plus Nimzowich, Rubinstein, Bogolubov. Ask me to name a GM from the early 80's era aside from Karpov-Kasparov, and I will flounder after Korchnoi and Beliavsky. From the second half of the 80's, there was Timman and Yusupov and um, well. I can remember Vaganian and Sokolov from that cycle where the latter got whipped by Karpov and that's it. Today, I can think of at least five GMs who would deserve to play a world title match. Kramnik, Anand, Topalov, Leko, retired Kasparov. On the second level we have more, Adams, Grischuk, Svidler, Morozevich, Shirov, Aronian, Ivanchuk, Gelfand. Put those in a tournament for #1 contender without prelims and few would mind.

With all due respect to the GMs of that era, the 80s seem fairly desolate in terms of talent. Now I am not an expert on the subject, so input is appreciated.

I forgot where I was going with my previous post--my question was, do you think eras like that are due to having one or two guys who are so much on top (Karpov-Korchnoi, then Kasparov-Karpov) or was there a lack of top-level performers at that moment in history?

Yes, the late 70's and early 80's were utterly dominated by Karpov. Off the top of my head, I can name Miles, Andersson, and Polugayevsky -- although the latter was, of course, more of a veteran by that point. Kind of like Korchnoi.


Looking at my chess library best games section, I only have Beliavsky and Timman's books for that time frame. Miles had some good results in the early to middle 80's, until Kasparov cleaned his clock so-to-speak 5.5-.5 in a match. He was never the same after that. Andersson, Hubner, Nunn, Speelman, Seirawan and Yusupov were strong world class players, but a class below the two K's. Oh yeah, Ljubojevic had some excellent results, but was more inconsistent than Morozevich or Shirov are today.

Wasn't there a very strong defensive player named Ribli from that era? I seem to recall being terribly impressed by one of his games when I first got Chessmaster 4000, ten years ago or so.

Zoltan Ribli from Hungary was a very strong player. So was his country man Lajos Portisch also known as the Hungarian Botvinnik.

Another world class player who is very strong even now is Rafael Vaganian.

Of course , one of the strongest technical players in recent memory is Valery Salov.

Wolfgang Uhlmann .

Jonathan Mestel, Murray Chandler and David Norwood from UK, Jesus Nogueras from Cuba, Eugenio Torre from Philippines, Florin Gheorghiu and Mihail Suba from Romania, Adorjan and Gyula Sax from Hungary, Vlastimil Hort from Czechoslovakia.

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    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on May 5, 2006 11:57 PM.

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