Kavalek at Huffington: Remembering Larry Evans

11/19/2010 – Larry Evans, who died at the age of 78 this Monday, scored an impressive nine points in ten games in his first Olympiad for the U.S. In 26 years, from 1950 to 1976, he chalked up 64.5/100 points in eight Olympiads. GM Lubomir Kavalek, who played next to him at the 1976 Olympiad in Haifa, shows us one of the most thrilling games of Evans' career in this Huffington Post column.

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Remembering Larry Evans

By GM Lubomir Kavalek

Larry Melvyn Evans (1932-2010), one of the most prominent American grandmasters, prolific writer and commentator, died in Reno, Nevada, on November 15 at the age of 78.

Evans began playing chess in New York City. He quickly progressed and in 1951, at age 19, won his first U.S. Championship ahead of Sammy Reshevsky. He would win four more U.S. titles as well as four U.S. Opens.


Evans, Kavalek and Robert Byrne in Haifa 1976

With steady play, Evans was a calm presence on the U.S. Olympiad teams. In his first Olympiad in Dubrovnik in 1950, Evans scored an impressive nine points in ten games. In 26 years, from 1950 to 1976, he played 100 games in eight Olympiads and scored 64.5 points, winning gold, silver and bronze medals for his individual efforts. I had the privilege to play next to him at the 1976 Olympiad in Haifa, when the U.S. team won the gold medals. He was an excellent positional player, a tough-minded counterpunching defender who didn't mind grabbing pawns and taking risks. He was hard to beat.

Evans wrote more than 20 books and his syndicated chess column was read in 50 newspapers. He made a large contribution to Bobby Fischer's classic "60 Memorable Games." He was a good friend of Fischer, helping him to prepare for his world championship drive in the early 1970s.

In the match USA vs. USSR in 1954, Evans was one of the Americans with a winning score, beating Mark Taimanov 2.5 to 1.5. The other one was Donald Byrne who smashed Yuri Averbakh 3-1. They showed that the mighty Soviets can fall. "The most thrilling game of my career featured an inspired defense after I walked headlong into a prepared variation against the Soviet champion Taimanov in our rubber game with the score tied 1.5-1.5. Tension rode high. At move 18 he had used only two minutes on his clock, while I consumed close to an hour," Evans wrote in the introduction to his memorable game.

Note that in the replay windows below you can click on the notation to follow the game.

Original column hereCopyright Huffington Post


Chess Puzzles: A Disappearing Act

Solutions

Arvid Kubbel (1889-1938), an older brother of the well-known composer Leonid Kubbel, was sent to Soviet gulag for sending his compositions to foreign "bourgeois" newspapers. He died a year later. Leonid published the following stunning work in Sovremenoye Slovo in 1917.

Leonid Kubbel

White wins

Note that in the replay windows below you can click on the notation to follow the game.

The Latvian-born Mikhail Platov (1883-1938) was the younger and lesser-known of the famous Platov brothers. He died in a forced labor camp, where he was sent for making a derogatory remark about Stalin. The brothers teamed up in a remarkable study, published in Sydsvenska Dagbladet Snallpost in 1911, in which some pieces disappear and others are born in a whirl of surprising moves.

Vassily and Mikhail Platov

White wins

Note that in the replay windows below you can click on the notation to follow the game.


The Huffington Post is an American news website and aggregated blog founded by Arianna Huffington and others, featuring various news sources and columnists. The site was launched on May 9, 2005, as a commentary outlet and liberal/progressive alternative to conservative news websites. It offers coverage of politics, media, business, entertainment, living, style, the green movement, world news, and comedy. It is a top destination for news, blogs, and original content. The Huffington Post has an active community, with over one million comments made on the site each month. According to Nielsen NetRatings, the site has around 13 million unique visitors per month (number for March 2010); according to Google Analytics the number is 22 million uniques per month.


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