Lubomir Kavalek 1943-2021

Lubomir Kavalek
Czech-American chess player.
Died on Tuesday January 19th 2021

FIDE: Very sad news: chess legend Lubomir Kavalek has passed away at 77. He was one of the greatest chess personalities of Czechoslovak and American chess.


RIP Legend 1943-2021
 

Lubomir Kavalek in 1968
Country United States
Czechoslovakia
Born 9 August  
Prague, Czechoslovakia
Died 18 January 2021 (aged 77)
Renton,Washington, U.S.
Title Grandmaster (1965)
FIDE rating 2527 (January 2021) (1999 – retired)
Peak rating 2625 in 1974

Lubomir (Lubosh) Kavalek (Czech: Lubomír Kaválek, August 9, 1943 – January 18, 2021)[1] was a Czech-American chess player. He was awarded both the International Master and International Grandmaster titles by FIDE in 1965.[2] He won two Czechoslovak and three U.S. championships,[3] and was ranked as the world’s no. 10 player in 1974.[4][5] He was inducted into the U.S. Chess Hall of Fame in 2001.[3] Kavalek was also a chess coach, organizer, teacher, commentator, author and award-winning columnist.[6]

Kavalek was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia (now the Czech Republic). He studied communication and journalism at Charles University.[7] He won the championship of Czechoslovakia in 1962 and 1968. When Soviet tanks rolled into Prague in August 1968, Kavalek was playing in the Akiba Rubinstein Memorial in Poland, in which he finished second. Kavalek, who had always hated Communism, decided to defect to the West rather than return to Soviet-dominated Czechoslovakia. He bought several crates of vodka with his winnings, used them to bribe the border guards, and drove to West Germany. “It was the biggest loss ever suffered by Czechoslovakian chess,” wrote Andrew Soltis in “The 100 Best Chess Games of the 20th Century, Ranked.”

In 1970, on the way to the United States, Kavalek won a strong tournament in Caracas (scoring +10−1=6).He played the first half under the Czechoslovakian flag, the second half under the American flag. He represented the United States before officially setting foot in his new adopted country. Kavalek moved to Washington, D.C., studied Slavic literature at George Washington University and worked at Voice of America (1971–72). In 1973 he became a full-time chess professional. He later became a United States citizen. He lived in Reston, Virginia.

 

Kavalek in his younger years | Photo: Kavalek archive

Walter Browne, Lubomir Kavalek, Luzern 1982 | Foto: Collection of the World Chess Hall of Fame

Vaclav Havel and Bessel Kok at the chessboard, as Kavalek kibitzes | Photo: Kavalek archive

16th June 1979. World Champion Anatoly Karpov (USSR) faces grandmaster Lubomir Kavalek (USA), in the 3rd round of the quadrangular tournament in the Dutch town of Waddinxveen. (Photo credit: R. Croes / ANEFO, via http://nationaalarchief.nl.) #chess

#1 Amsterdam IBM, 1969
#2 Wijk aan Zee, 1969
#3 Amsterdam, 1975
#4 Wijk aan Zee, 1982.
(Photos via http://nationaalarchief.nl.)

 


Szomorú hír – GM Kavalek 77 éves korában elhunyt. A 70-es évek közepén a világ egyik legjobb játékosa, emellett kiemelkedő edző és szerző volt. Érdekesség, hogy leghíresebb játékát (vs. Gufeld) karrierje hajnalán játszották. 40 körül abbahagyta, de folyamatosan edzett és írt. NYUGODJ BÉKÉBEN

Sad news – GM Kavalek passed away at the age of 77. One of the world’s best players in mid 70-ies, he was also a prominent coach and author. Curiously his most famous game (vs.Gufeld) was played at the very dawn of his career. He quit around 40, but kept coaching and writing. RIP

[Event “World Students Team-ch09 fin-A”] [Site “Marianske Lazne”] [Date “1962.07.20”] [Round “7.2”] [White “Gufeld, Eduard”] [Black “Kavalek, Lubomir”] [Result “0-1”] [ECO “C64”] [Annotator “André Schulz”] [PlyCount “69”] [EventDate “1962.07.13”] [EventType “team-tourn”] [EventRounds “9”] [EventCountry “CZE”] [SourceTitle “EXT 2000”] [Source “ChessBase”] [SourceDate “1999.11.16”] [SourceVersion “1”] [SourceVersionDate “1999.11.16”] [SourceQuality “1”] [WhiteTeam “Soviet Union U26”] [BlackTeam “Czechoslovakia U26”] [WhiteTeamCountry “URS”] [BlackTeamCountry “CSR”]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Bc5 4. c3 f5 5. d4 fxe4 (5… exd4 6. cxd4 Bb4+ 7.
Bd2 Bxd2+ 8. Nbxd2 fxe4 9. Nxe4 Nf6 10. Nxf6+ Qxf6 11. O-O O-O 12. Qb3+ Kh8 13.
d5 Ne7 14. Rad1 d6 15. Nd4 a6 16. Be2 Rf7 17. Bh5 Ng6 18. Bxg6 Qxg6 19. Rde1 h6
20. Re8+ Kh7 21. Rfe1 Bh3 22. Qg3 Rxe8 23. Qxg6+ Kxg6 24. Rxe8 Bd7 25. Re4 Bf5
26. Re1 Kf6 27. f4 Bd7 28. Rc1 Bc8 29. Kf2 Re7 30. Kf3 c5 31. Nc2 Bf5 32. Ne3
Be4+ 33. Kf2 Bh7 34. g3 Re4 35. Ng4+ Ke7 36. Re1 Rxe1 37. Kxe1 Be4 38. Ne3 b5
39. a3 g5 40. Kf2 Kf6 41. Ng4+ Kg6 42. Ne3 a5 43. h4 gxf4 44. gxf4 a4 45. Kg3
Bd3 46. Kf3 b4 47. Kg3 c4 48. f5+ Kg7 49. axb4 c3 50. bxc3 a3 51. b5 a2 {
0-1 (51) Minckwitz,J-Schallopp,E Leipzig 1879}) 6. Ng5 ({The main line today is} 6. Bxc6 dxc6 7. Nxe5 {z.B.:} Bd6 8. Qh5+ g6 9. Qe2 Bf5 10. h3 Qe7 11.
Bf4 Nf6 12. Nd2 O-O-O 13. O-O Rhg8 14. Bh2 h5 15. Ndc4 Nd5 16. f3 exf3 17. Qxf3
Bxe5 18. Nxe5 Qh7 19. c4 Ne7 20. Rad1 Kb8 21. g4 hxg4 22. hxg4 Be6 23. Qf6 Bc8
24. Nf7 Rd7 25. Ng5 Qh4 26. Qf4 Rh8 27. Bg3 Qh6 28. Kg2 b6 29. Qe5 Re8 30. Rh1
Qf8 31. Ne6 {1-0 (31) Anand,V (2776)-L’Ami,E (2605) Germany 2017 CBM 179
[Sagar Shah]}) 6… Bb6 {At that time, an innovation.} (6… Be7 7. dxe5 Bxg5 8. Qh5+
g6 9. Qxg5 Qxg5 10. Bxg5 Nxe5 11. Bf4 Nf7 12. Bxc7 Nf6 13. Nd2 O-O 14. Bg3 d5
15. O-O Nh5 16. Bc7 Be6 17. Nb3 Rfc8 18. Bg3 Nxg3 19. hxg3 Ne5 20. Nd4 Bd7 21.
Be2 Rf8 22. Rad1 Rf6 23. Rd2 Raf8 24. Nc2 Bg4 25. Nb4 Bxe2 26. Rxe2 Rd8 27. Rd1
Rfd6 28. Red2 Nc4 29. Rxd5 Rxd5 30. Nxd5 Kf7 31. b3 Nb2 32. Rd4 Nd3 33. c4 Nb4
34. f3 Nxa2 35. Rxe4 Rd7 36. Re1 a5 37. Ra1 Nb4 38. Nxb4 axb4 39. Ra4 Ke6 40.
Rxb4 Ke5 41. Rb6 Kd4 42. Kf2 Re7 43. g4 g5 44. Rb4 h6 45. Rb6 Kc3 46. c5 Rc7
47. Rxh6 Kxb3 48. Rg6 Rxc5 49. Rb6+ Kc4 50. Rxb7 Kd5 51. Rb6 Ke5 52. Rg6 Rc2+
53. Kg3 Ra2 54. Rxg5+ Kf6 55. Rb5 Rc2 56. Rb6+ Kg7 57. g5 Ra2 58. f4 Rc2 59.
Kf3 {1-0 (59) Bannik,A-Bonch Osmolovsky,M Kiev (Ukraine) 1957}) 7. d5 $6 (7.
Nxe4 d5 8. Qh5+ Kf8 9. Ng5 Qe7 10. O-O Nf6 11. Qh4 exd4 12. Nf3 Ne4 13. Qxe7+
Nxe7 14. Nxd4 Nf5 15. Nxf5 Bxf5 16. Be3 Kf7 17. Bxb6 axb6 18. Rd1 c6 19. Bf1
Nc5 20. Na3 Na4 21. Rd2 Nxc3 22. bxc3 Rxa3 23. c4 Be6 24. Rb1 dxc4 25. Rxb6 Rb8
26. Rc2 c3 27. Bd3 Bxa2 28. f4 h6 29. Kf2 Bd5 30. Ke3 c5 31. Bg6+ Ke7 32. g4
Rd8 33. Be4 Bxe4 34. Kxe4 Rd4+ 35. Kf5 Rb4 36. Re2+ Kd7 37. Rg6 Rb2 38. Ree6
Kc7 39. Rxg7+ Kb8 40. Re8+ Ka7 41. Re5 Kb6 42. Re6+ Ka7 43. Rc7 c2 44. Rxc5 Rb5
45. Ree5 Ra2 46. Rc8 Rb4 47. g5 Raa4 48. Rxc2 Rxf4+ 49. Kg6 hxg5 50. Kxg5 Rh4
51. Rb2 Rag4+ 52. Kf5 Rf4+ 53. Kg6 Rhg4+ 54. Rg5 Rxg5+ 55. Kxg5 Rf1 56. h4 Rh1
57. h5 Rg1+ 58. Kf6 Rf1+ 59. Kg7 Rg1+ 60. Kh7 Ka6 61. Ra2+ Kb5 62. Ra7 Kc6 63.
h6 b5 64. Rg7 Rh1 {1/2-1/2 (64) Westerinen,H-Carleson,C Stockholm 1974}) 7…
e3 8. Ne4 ({A few years later there followed} 8. dxc6 bxc6 9. h4 exf2+ 10. Kf1
cxb5 11. Qd5 Nh6 12. Qxa8 c6 13. Ne4 O-O 14. Bg5 b4 {0-1 (14) Grigorian,
K-Dzindzichashvili,R Rostov on Don (Russia) 1969}) 8… Qh4 $17 {[#]} 9. Qf3
Nf6 (9… exf2+ $5 10. Kf1 Nf6) 10. Nxf6+ gxf6 11. dxc6 exf2+ {[#]} 12. Kd1 $2
(12. Kf1 dxc6 13. Be2 Rg8 $40) 12… dxc6 {Black is down a piece but has a winning attack.} 13. Be2 Be6 {Threatening 14. Qa4 b3 15.Bxb3} 14.
Qh5+ Qxh5 15. Bxh5+ Ke7 16. b3 Bd5 17. Ba3+ Ke6 18. Bg4+ f5 19. Bh3 Rhg8 20.
Nd2 Bxg2 21. Bxg2 Rxg2 22. Rf1 Rd8 23. Ke2 Rxd2+ {Black’s onslaught continues! [#]} 24. Kxd2 e4 25. Bf8 f4 26. b4 Rg5 27. Bc5 Rxc5 {
And one more exchange for good measure.} 28. bxc5 Bxc5 {Black now plays with a lone bishop against two rooks. But of course his pawns are what matters. [#]} 29.
Rab1 f3 30. Rb4 Kf5 {Spurning the rook offer. Both will soon fall.} 31. Rd4 Bxd4 32. cxd4
Kf4 33. Rxf2 e3+ 34. Ke1 exf2+ 35. Kxf2 (35. Kxf2 b5 $19) 0-1