Spot the player !

Historical knowledge and information regarding our great game.
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Roger de Coverly
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Spot the player !

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Mar 06, 2011 9:37 am

Simon Williams over at the gingergm site has published some pictures from his family album.
http://www.gingergm.com/2011/02/14/spot ... #more-4194

These depict a simul by Spassky (and unnamed others) in the late 70s.

One strikes me about this picture, is just the sheer number of strong young players that could be mustered. Where you can identify them, they are stalwarts of the 4NCL to this day. Each GM is taking on about 20 players. The layout of the room suggests that sixty to eighty players are taking part.

Leonard Barden
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Re: Spot the player !

Post by Leonard Barden » Sun Mar 06, 2011 10:18 am

There were in fact six or seven simuls going on simultaneously in the one hall (at Highbury Grove School, January 1979). They were given by Boris Spassky, Evgeny Vasyukov, Alexander Kochiev (the two Soviets had just competed at Hastings, so the top three simuls totalling 90 boards were billed as England juniors v USSR), Murray Chandler, Harry Golombek (celebrating the 50th anniversary of his London Boys Championship victory), Andrew Whiteley, and Dave Rumens (not totally sure about Whiteley). In total, around 150-200 juniors, almost all individually invited though with a few adds who had turned up for the preceding London junior championships prizegiving.

This mammoth event was only made possible by the organisational genius of Peter Morrish. The Evening Standard paid Spassky's £1000 fee and there was also backing from the Slater Foundation. All juniors took part free of charge. Spassky scored only one win on the top ten boards, when David Cummings blundered when a piece up. The top two boards against him were Nigel Short (who drew) and Julian Hodgson (who won), Board 29 in a team of 30 against Spassky was Stuart Conquest. Spassky's display lasted some six hours, He called it 'hard bread' and admitted it was his worst ever simul result. At the end of it all when the sets and boards were finally packed away, the door was opened to the street revealing a blizzard.... .
Last edited by Leonard Barden on Sun Mar 06, 2011 11:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Spot the player !

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Mar 06, 2011 10:39 am

Leonard Barden wrote:There were in fact six or seven simuls going on simultaneously in the one hall (at Starcross School, Islington). They were given by Boris Spassky, Evgeny Vasyukov, Alexander Kochiev (the two Soviets had just competed at Hastings
That would date it to January 1979 which was an exceptional cold winter. Simon has it as 1977, but the hair length looked wrong for at least one of the easily identified players. Also in 1977 you might expect Spassky to be busy with the Candidates' matches.

Leonard Barden
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Re: Spot the player !

Post by Leonard Barden » Sun Mar 06, 2011 10:48 am

Player identification

Photo 1 front row, facing camera, l to r: Malcolm Pein, Gary Clark, Richard Holmes, Tony Williams, Clive Frostick, John Pitcher

2nd photo Daniel King, Pein, Clark (smoking cigarette), Holmes, Williams, Frostick, Andrew King (?)

3rd photo shows Vasyukov making a move

4th photo at left Nicholas Benjamin

Leonard Barden
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Re: Spot the player !

Post by Leonard Barden » Sun Mar 06, 2011 11:03 am

This event has already been discussed in a previous Forum thread. See Chess History: Spassky v BCF junior squad 1979. I'm sorry my technical skills are not up to providing the link here, perhaps someone else can do so.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Spot the player !

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Mar 06, 2011 11:27 am

Leonard Barden wrote:This event has already been discussed in a previous Forum thread. See Chess History: Spassky v BCF junior squad 1979.
http://www.ecforum.org.uk/viewtopic.php?f=27&t=800

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: Spot the player !

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Mon Mar 07, 2011 5:38 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Leonard Barden wrote:There were in fact six or seven simuls going on simultaneously in the one hall (at Starcross School, Islington). They were given by Boris Spassky, Evgeny Vasyukov, Alexander Kochiev (the two Soviets had just competed at Hastings
That would date it to January 1979 which was an exceptional cold winter. Simon has it as 1977, but the hair length looked wrong for at least one of the easily identified players. Also in 1977 you might expect Spassky to be busy with the Candidates' matches.

Karpov gave a simul against a strong team of juniors in 1977 and Simon's brother Tony played in that one too. Perhaps the two dates became confused.

Incidentally, the Karpov simul was reported on the front page of The Times (reproduced here: http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.c ... s-xvi.html in case anybody is interested). The late 1970s must have been the golden age for simuls, in modern times at least.

AustinElliott
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Re: Spot the player !

Post by AustinElliott » Mon Mar 07, 2011 7:09 pm

I actually played in the Kochiev simul in the great 1979 bash, managing to bore him to a draw after I'd botched the opening. Had completely forgotten that it was part of the simul uber-day, with Spassky playing the junior A-team.

Keith Arkell
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Re: Spot the player !

Post by Keith Arkell » Sun Mar 13, 2011 3:28 am

I've just dug up my game from that Spassky simul:

[Event "Simultaneous Display"]
[Date "1979.01.20"]
[White "Spassky, B."]
[Black "Arkell, Keith"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "B08"]
[WhiteElo "2632"]
[BlackElo "2000"]

1. e4 d6 2. d4 Nf6 3. Nc3 g6 4. Nf3 Bg7 5. Be2 O-O 6. O-O Bg4 7. Be3 Nbd7 8.
Qd2 e5 9. dxe5 Nxe5 10. Nxe5 dxe5 11. f3 Be6 12. Qxd8 Rfxd8 13. Rfd1 a6 14.
Rxd8+ Rxd8 15. Rd1 Rxd1+ 16. Bxd1 Bf8 17. a3 Nd7 18. Kf2 Bc5 1/2-1/2

Hardly the most exciting game ever. I remember the expansive way he opened his hands and said ''draw''. It seemed impossible to say no.

It would be 23 years before our paths next crossed. He had just drawn with Danny Gormally in a French League game, while I had held a difficult game with Black v Bacrot.
He said to me ''congratulations on a magnificent defence'',even though we were playing for opposite teams. What a nice guy,I thought to myself.

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