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Samuel Reshevsky
Number of games in database: 1,495
Years covered: 1917 to 1991
Overall record: +558 -213 =662 (62.0%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games
      Based on games in the database; may be incomplete.
      62 exhibition games, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Nimzo Indian (118) 
    E46 E43 E57 E47 E58
 King's Indian (92) 
    E92 E97 E94 E60 E62
 Grunfeld (51) 
    D97 D81 D92 D83 D82
 Orthodox Defense (41) 
    D51 D50 D55 D62 D52
 English (37) 
    A15 A10 A16 A14 A17
 Queen's Gambit Declined (35) 
    D37 D35 D31 D30 D36
With the Black pieces:
 Ruy Lopez (138) 
    C96 C95 C86 C93 C88
 Sicilian (116) 
    B32 B40 B71 B42 B83
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (95) 
    C96 C95 C86 C93 C88
 Nimzo Indian (76) 
    E33 E57 E54 E46 E58
 King's Indian (66) 
    E94 E69 E60 E79 E81
 Queen's Indian (49) 
    E12 E19 E17 E16 E15
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Larry Evans vs Reshevsky, 1963 1/2-1/2
   Reshevsky vs A Vasconcellos, 1944 1-0
   Botvinnik vs Reshevsky, 1948 0-1
   Reshevsky vs Petrosian, 1953 1/2-1/2
   Reshevsky vs G Treysman, 1938 1-0
   Reshevsky vs Capablanca, 1935 1-0
   Szabo vs Reshevsky, 1953 1/2-1/2
   Keres vs Reshevsky, 1953 1/2-1/2
   Reshevsky vs Najdorf, 1952 1-0
   Reshevsky vs Mecking, 1967 1-0

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS: [what is this?]
   FIDE World Championship Tournament (1948)

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Syracuse (1934)
   Kemeri (1937)
   US Championship (1936)
   Third Rosenwald Trophy (1956)
   Reshevsky - Najdorf (1952)
   56th US Open (1955)
   Buenos Aires (1960)
   US Championship (1972)
   Amsterdam (1950)
   Zurich Candidates (1953)
   US Championship 1957/58 (1957)
   Palma de Mallorca (1971)
   Nottingham (1936)
   Sousse Interzonal (1967)
   Amsterdam Interzonal (1964)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Match Reshevsky! by amadeus
   Challenger of 48 Reshevsky_125 by Gottschalk
   Reshevsky's Best Games of Chess, Vol. I by suenteus po 147
   Guess-the-Move Chess: 1940-1959 (Part 2) by Anatoly21
   The Art of Positional Play by SamAtoms1980
   WCC Index [Zurich 1953] by suenteus po 147
   Garry Kasparov's On My Great Predecessors (4) by AdrianP
   WCC Index [World Championship Tournament 1948] by Resignation Trap
   1948 World Chess Championship by Penguincw
   Match for the Championship of the Free World by Resignation Trap
   Art of War's favorite games 8 by Art of War
   Second Piatigorsky Cup 1966 by Benzol
   Rematch for Championship of the West 1953 by Resignation Trap

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Samuel Reshevsky
Search Google for Samuel Reshevsky

(born Nov-26-1911, died Apr-04-1992, 80 years old) Poland (citizen of United States of America)

[what is this?]
Samuel Herman Reshevsky (Szmul Rzeszewski) was born in Ozorkow, Poland. He learned to play chess at the age of four. At eight years old he was giving simultaneous exhibitions and defeating some of the country's most prominent players.

Following the events of World War 1, Reshevsky immigrated to the United States (1920). As a 9-year old, his first American simultaneous exhibition was with 20 officers and cadets at the Military Academy at West Point. He won 19 games and drew one. He toured the country and played over 1,500 games as a 9-year old in simultaneous exhibitions and only lost 8 games. In his early years he did not go to school and his parents ended up in Manhattan Children's Court on charges of improper guardianship. His benefactor was Julius Rosenwald, founder of Sears & Roebuck, who agreed to provide for Reshevsky's future if he devoted himself to completing his education. Reshevsky then largely abandoned chess for 10 years to pursue a vocation as an accountant, receiving an accounting degree from the University of Chicago in 1933 which was put to use in New York city.

After obtaining his college degree, he devoted himself to tournament chess. Several subsequent successes in international events led to his invitations to both AVRO 1938 and the World Championship Tournament ten years later. Between 1936 and 1942, he had a streak of 75 games without a loss in U.S. Championship competition. He won the US Open in 1944. Pan-American Champion at Hollywood 1945. He played in 21 U.S. Championships, from 1936 to 1981. Over the course of a long international career that continued until he was well over sixty years old, he qualified for the Candidates five times, won the U.S. Championship on six occasions (first time in 1936, last time in 1971) and played a record eleven World Champions ranging from Emanuel Lasker to Anatoly Karpov.

He won matches against several notable Western players, including Svetozar Gligoric, Miguel Najdorf and Robert James Fischer (after Fischer was forfeited while the match was tied). However, he was never able to secure the right to a World Championship match. In 1981, at the age of 70, he tied for 3rd place in the U.S. Championship. In 1984, at the age of 72, he took first place in the powerful Reykjavik Open, which featured many grandmasters. (1)

Wikipedia article: Samuel Reshevsky; (1)

 page 1 of 60; games 1-25 of 1,495  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves Year Event/LocaleOpening
1. Reshevsky vs Factor 0-126 1917 Lodz, PolandC22 Center Game
2. Reshevsky vs Rubinstein 0-124 1917 Warsaw C50 Giuoco Piano
3. Reshevsky vs Simchow  0-134 1920 New York simD05 Queen's Pawn Game
4. Reshevsky vs E B Hilliard 1-027 1920 Blindfold gameC30 King's Gambit Declined
5. Reshevsky vs M Herzfeld  1-052 1920 Paris simulC66 Ruy Lopez
6. Reshevsky vs L T Haller 1-039 1920 Paterson simD02 Queen's Pawn Game
7. Reshevsky vs M J Clurman ½-½23 1920 New York simB15 Caro-Kann
8. Reshevsky vs G W Beaumont  1-030 1920 Simultaneous exhibitionC34 King's Gambit Accepted
9. M A Schapiro vs Reshevsky  0-140 1920 New YorkC14 French, Classical
10. Reshevsky vs Gency  1-037 1920 Paris simulC30 King's Gambit Declined
11. Reshevsky vs Stillman 1-020 1920 New York simB21 Sicilian, 2.f4 and 2.d4
12. P Krueger vs Reshevsky ½-½39 1920 Blindfold gameC48 Four Knights
13. Reshevsky vs R C Griffith 1-030 1920 LondonC67 Ruy Lopez
14. Reshevsky vs S Katz ½-½29 1920 New York simB21 Sicilian, 2.f4 and 2.d4
15. Reshevsky vs Traube 1-017 1920 HanoverA02 Bird's Opening
16. C Jaffe vs Reshevsky 0-117 1920 New York blindfoldC30 King's Gambit Declined
17. Reshevsky vs Knoller 1-040 1920 New York simC79 Ruy Lopez, Steinitz Defense Deferred
18. Reshevsky vs L Schwarz 1-065 1920 20 board simultaneous exhibitionC00 French Defense
19. Reshevsky vs Zabludovsky 1-029 1920 Berlin simulC62 Ruy Lopez, Old Steinitz Defense
20. Reshevsky vs L Von Dory 1-016 1920 Berlin simulC35 King's Gambit Accepted, Cunningham
21. Reshevsky vs E N Moore 0-126 1921 Cleveland simC67 Ruy Lopez
22. Reshevsky vs A B Stamer  ½-½60 1921 San Francisco simC79 Ruy Lopez, Steinitz Defense Deferred
23. Reshevsky vs R B Griffith  ½-½63 1921 Los AngelesC55 Two Knights Defense
24. Reshevsky vs E G Short  0-121 1921 Portland SimultaneousC87 Ruy Lopez
25. Reshevsky vs Simonds  1-030 1921 Milwaukee simC50 Giuoco Piano
 page 1 of 60; games 1-25 of 1,495  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Reshevsky wins | Reshevsky loses  

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Picture is from the site, sorry if posted before!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: Wow! He's playing Albert M Swank!
May-20-13  TheFocus: Yep, that's Swank. I could tell from the beard.


<Sammy> See... I move my horsey here and I win your Queen. <Albert>: Nice game, Sammy. <Sammy> Swank you!

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: From the bio <In 1984, at the age of 72, he took first place in a grandmaster tournament in Reykjavik, Iceland>. As this is the last line in his bio, could it be made more specific (the Rejkjavik Open)? It sounds sad to have a slightly vague fact ending a note of his illustrious career, IMO.
Premium Chessgames Member
  chancho: <As this is the last line in his bio, could it be made more specific (the Rejkjavik Open)>

It was an 11 round swiss, 60 players played the event, and Reshevsky scored 8-3 and tied for 1st-3rd.

(5 wins 0 losses 6 draws.)

Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: So his last event was in Reykjavik. If he had died there he might have been buried in the cemetery of Laugardalur Church.
Sep-22-13  TheFocus: No, he played for another 5 years after Reykjavic.

Last event was a 4 game/30 drawn match against Smyslov in 1991.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Karpova: C.N. 8374 links to the article <Sammy Reshevky - America's New Champion> by Philip Slomovitz in the 'Jewish Criterion' of June 5, 1936, forwarded by Harrie Grondijs (Rijswijk, the Netherlands):
Mar-01-14  Yopo: Reshevsky at Paris in the year 1920 (in french)
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: I wonder when his best period was?

I'd say 1950 to 1955.

May-05-14  Petrosianic: Probably more like 1935-1955.
May-05-14  RedShield: 1917 to 1991.
May-05-14  RookFile: I think Petrosianic is right on this one. It matches a comment Robert Byrne made one time. He noticed that Reshevsky took his game to a whole new level when he was in his 40's - most people are declining then, not Reshevsky.
Jun-10-14  GumboGambit: Regardless of how Americans spell/pronounce it, his Polish surname (Rzeszewski) is very similar to Coach Ks. It is pronounced ' Zheshevski '.
Jul-05-14  zanzibar: Looking at his bio in <Pan-American Chess Congress (1945)>, I see that he was living in Roxbury, MA (USA) at the time.

Imagine that!

See also:

(in French) where he signed a book with the location as well.

Jul-05-14  zanzibar: I found refs to him being in Roxbury ~ 1942 (maybe earlier?) - 1950

<He played less as the years went by, increasingly devoting himself to his religion, classical music and his family in Spring Valley, where he had settled in 1950.>

From his NYT obit:

Premium Chessgames Member
  sfm: <RookFile: ...a whole new level when he was in his 40's - most people are declining then, not Reshevsky.> Right, that is probably because most people would already have already developed their talent and topped. In Reshevsky there was still lots of undeveloped resources due to his absence. I hope he enjoyed being accountant, but I doubt it was better than what he would have been: world champion material. Fischer had the luck that nobody tore him away.
Nov-13-14  TheFocus: I have been looking at Reshevsky's career and note that so many of his tournament and match games are missing from the database.

Scandalous for such a fine player's career to be presented here.

Nov-13-14  Petrosianic: Speaking of scandalous, calling Reshevsky a "Fine" player is a little impolitic too.
Nov-13-14  zanzibar: <TheFocus> Really? <CG> has 1490 of his games. Here's some of the other db's I have:

(Reshevsky search term)

<MillBase> 1269

<Enormous> 1875 (Hyatt's db)

<ICOfY> 1299

<Fritz 12> 1043

<CG> is actually doing fairly well in comparison.

* * * * *

PS - Does anybody know an easy way to get the number of filter games from Fritz without saving the games to a PGN and using emacs to count occurrences of Reshevsky? Ugh!

Nov-13-14  TheFocus: <zanzibar> Gordon's bio has 1768 games.

I don't submit games though. A biographer would have to do it.

Nov-13-14  zanzibar: Ha. Well, I think Enormous must have most of them... and I am aware that it has duplicate entries.

I've been working on software to compare two data sets and cull out non-overlaps. Might be a good acid test.

Any glaring omissions thought? Like a favorite you think unforgivable not to have in the collection?

Nov-13-14  TheFocus: Not searched far enough yet.
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: <sfm: ... Fischer had the luck that nobody tore him away.>

Well, it wasn't luck, it was Fischer himself. For example, he cut his mother out of his life for a while so he could focus (even more) on chess.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Dale A Brandreth in <QCH>, Spring 1/1999:

<As an example, I was very impressed by the account of Alekhine's visit to Hungary in 1927 on the eve of his titanic struggle with Capablanca. His games in the Kecskemet (1927) tournament are given together with a detailed report of the games he played in three simultaneous exhibitions in Budapest and Szenta. Hungary's chess fans idolized Alekhine. Alekhine sought to achieve a good score, but he also strove to give an impressive display of his mastery by the quality of his play.

When I think of the contrast of Alekhine's scintillating performances there and a super-efficient but dull simul (against weaker players) by Reshevsky in the 1980's which I saw in West Chester, Pennsylvania (+25, 0, 0), it is easy to understand why there are so many books devoted to Alekhine and so few to Reshevsky. In fact, after the West Chester performance the consensus was that he would not be invited back, principally because of his dead-fish personality, unfriendly disposition, and total lack of any attempt to entertain.>

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