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Vladas Mikenas
V Mikenas 
Number of games in database: 499
Years covered: 1931 to 1988

Overall record: +144 -197 =158 (44.7%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database.

With the White pieces:
 Nimzo Indian (34) 
    E23 E32 E33 E46 E25
 King's Indian (28) 
    E75 E67 E79 E91 E62
 Orthodox Defense (25) 
    D50 D52 D67 D63 D58
 Sicilian (17) 
    B99 B43 B49 B32 B62
 English (16) 
    A18 A16 A19 A15 A14
 Queen's Pawn Game (12) 
    A40 A45 A46 D02 D04
With the Black pieces:
 Alekhine's Defense (42) 
    B03 B05 B02 B04
 Grunfeld (32) 
    D75 D81 D83 D92 D95
 Sicilian (18) 
    B32 B58 B47 B29 B88
 Queen's Pawn Game (15) 
    A40 D02 E00 D01 A46
 Queen's Gambit Declined (14) 
    D30 D35 D31
 English (13) 
    A13 A15 A14 A19 A16
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   V Mikenas vs S F Lebedev, 1941 1-0
   V Mikenas vs Flohr, 1933 1-0
   V Mikenas vs Alekhine, 1939 1/2-1/2
   V Mikenas vs Kotov, 1949 1-0
   V Mikenas vs B Vladimirov, 1963 1-0
   V Mikenas vs Maroczy, 1933 1-0
   Alekhine vs V Mikenas, 1937 0-1
   V Mikenas vs Alekhine, 1935 1/2-1/2
   V Mikenas vs Viktor, 1980 1-0
   Keres vs V Mikenas, 1937 1/2-1/2

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Rosario (1939)
   USSR Championship (1944)
   Hastings 1937/38 (1937)
   USSR Championship (1955)
   Kemeri (1937)
   USSR Championship (1962)
   USSR Championship (1950)
   USSR Championship (1940)
   USSR Championship (1949)
   USSR Championship (1957)
   USSR Championship (1970)
   USSR Championship (1965)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Vladas Mikenas - Lithuanian Legend by Resignation Trap
   Hastings 1937/38 by sneaky pete
   Rosario 1939 by Tabanus

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Vladas Mikenas
Search Google for Vladas Mikenas

(born Apr-17-1910, died Nov-03-1992, 82 years old) Estonia (federation/nationality Lithuania)

[what is this?]

Vladas Jonovich Mikėnas was born in Revel (Tallinn), Estonia. His childhood life was difficult. His father, Jonas Mikenas, passed away when he was 10 years old. Vladas worked after school to earn money for a living. Despite this, he found time for chess. Late at night, he would hide from his disapproving mother and sisters, and sit quietly by the oil lamp to study chess games. In 1925, the 15-year old Mikenas participated in the Jubilee tournament of the Tallinn chess club. After losing his first three games, he won the remainder and took first place, half a point ahead of Friedrich Amelung. (1)

In 1929, Mikenas took first place in the Tallinn championship. In the same year, he graduated from the Tallinn Russian gymnasium, and entered the Tallinn University of Technology.

In September 1930, Mikenas defeated Johannes Turn (+5 -2 =1) and became the Estonian chess champion. In December 1930, Tallinn hosted a tournament with the participation of seven local players and guest Efim Bogoljubov. Mikenas defeated Bogoljubov in the decisive game and took first place.

In addition to his university studies, Mikenas started working as a chess columnist for the weekly Estonian newspaper Esmaspaew ("Monday").

In 1931, Mikenas took first place in a tournament of the Helsinki Chess Club, Finland, with a result of 9.5/10. (2)

Also in 1931, Mikenas was invited to participate in the first Baltic countries championship, in Memel (Klaipeda). It was his first visit to Lithuania. Mikenas was the son of a Lithuanian father and a Polish mother. He did not speak Lithuanian, as they spoke Polish and Russian at home, but he had a Lithuanian passport. (1)

The tournament was held from May 22 to May 27, 1931. Isakas Vistaneckis (Kaunas) won the Baltic Champion title with 4.5/7, while Mikenas (Tallinn), Vladimir Petrov (Riga), Paul Saladin Leonhardt (Konigsberg), and Simon Gordon (Memel) shared places 2-5, with 4/7. (3)

In June 1931, Mikenas settled in Lithuania. In April 1933, he defeated seven-time Lithuanian champion Aleksander Macht in a match and became the Lithuanian champion.

In 1934, he won a match for the Lithuanian Champion title against Paul Vaitonis, at 6-2. In 1935, Vladas Mikenas drew a match with Isakas Vistaneckis (8-8), and defended his title. In 1937 and 1938, he won two matches for the Lithuanian championship title, against Povilas (Paul) Vaitonis (5.5-4.5 in 1937, and 9-3 in 1938).

Mikenas played several times in the Lithuanian SSR championships in Vilnius. He won the 14th LTU-ch in 1947, won in 1948, took 3rd in 1949, took 6th in 1951, tied for 2nd–4th in 1952, took 6th in 1953, took 2nd in 1954, took 3rd in 1955, took 2nd in 1957, tied for 2nd-4th in 1958, took 3rd in 1959, tied for 3rd–4th in 1960, won in 1961, took 2nd in 1963, won in 1964, shared 1st in 1965, tied for 2nd–3rd in 1967, and tied for 1st–2nd in 1968.

In May-June 1937, Mikenas participated in the 1st International tournament in Kemeri (Kemeri (1937)), and defeated world champion Alexander Alekhine. In September-October 1940, he participated for the first time in the XII USSR championship finals. In this tournament he defeated Mikhail Botvinnik. (4)

From 1931 to 1939, he participated in five official, and one unofficial, Chess Olympiads as the captain and 1st board of the Lithuanian team. In July 1931, he played at the 4th Chess Olympiad in Prague (+7 –5 =6), and drew his game against world champion Alekhine. In July 1933, he played in the 5th Chess Olympiad in Folkestone (+5 –3 =6). In August 1935, he played in the 6th Chess Olympiad in Warsaw (+2 –6 =10). In August/September 1936, he played in the unofficial Olympiad in Munich (+5 –7 =8). In July/August 1937, he played in the 7th Chess Olympiad in Stockholm (+7 –3 =8). In August/September 1939, he played in the 8th Chess Olympiad in Buenos Aires (+10 –5 =4). (5)

In May/June 1944, he tied for 5–6th with Vladimir Andreevich Makogonov in Moscow (13th USSR-ch) with 9/16. The winner was Mikhail Botvinnik with 12.5/16, and places 2-3 were taken by Vasily Smyslov and Isaac Boleslavsky with 10.5/16. (6)

In October/November 1945, he won the Baltic Chess Championship in Riga. (7)

In June/July 1946, he took 3rd, behind Yuri Averbakh and Vistaneckis, in Vilnius (Baltic Rep.-ch). (8)

Mikenas was awarded the International Master title in 1950. In 1968, he was awarded the International Arbiter title. (4)

In December 1959, Mikenas participated in the international tournament 'Baltic Sea – sea of peace' in Riga. He defeated Mikhail Tal, and took second place with 11/13, only 0.5 point behind Boris Spassky and ahead of Alexander Kazimirovich Tolush (8.5/13) and Mikhail Tal (8/13). (9)

Mikenas played on first board of the Lithuanian team that won the 'Europe Cup' 1963-1972 correspondence chess tournament, and in 1971 was awarded the International Master title in Correspondence Chess.

In 1977, at the age of 67, Mikenas won the Lithuanian Championship again. In 1987, FIDE awarded him the Honorary Grandmaster title. (4)

Vladas Mikenas participated in the USSR championship finals 10 times.

Mikenas was a coach of Paul Keres during the period of 1955-1962.

From 1983 to 1985, he was the chief arbiter of Candidates and Challengers Matches Garry KasparovAlexander Beliavsky, Kasparov – Smyslov, and Kasparov – Anatoly Karpov.

The contributions of Vladas Mikenas to chess openings theory: the Mikenas Variation of the Modern Benoni, a sharp attacking line (1.d4 ♘f6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 e6 4.♘c3 exd5 5.cxd5 d6 6.e4 g6 7.f4 ♗g7 8.e5), the Salomon Flohr Variation in the English Opening, and the Bogoljubov - Mikenas defense in the Queen's Pawn opening.

List of books published by Mikenas (10)

Šachmatų vadovėlis, ("Chess textbook"), 1932.
Šachmatu žaidimo pagrindai, ("Chess Game Basics"), 1950, second edition 1952.
Šachmatų pirmenybės, ("Chess competitions"), 1958.
35 metai prie šachmatų lentos, ("35 years at the chessboard"), 1961.
Šachmatai: teorija ir praktika ("Chess: Theory and Practice"), 1968.


(1) "35 metai prie šachmatų lentos" ("35 years at the chessboard"), by Mikenas. Valstybinė politinės ir mokslinės literatūros leidykla (State political and scientific literature publishing house), Vilnius 1961, pages 5-6, page 20.
(2) "Владас Микенас" ("Vladas Mikenas"), В.Я.Дворкович (V. Y. Dvorkovich), Физкультура и спорт (Physical Education and Sport), 1987, pages 4-6.
(3) "Esmaspaew" ("Monday"), number 23, 8 June 1931, page 8, Mikenas' article "keeruline tulemus Balti meistriturniir" ("complicated result of the Baltic masters tournament").
(7) [rusbase-1]
(8) [rusbase-2]

Last updated: 2016-12-31 01:37:19

 page 1 of 20; games 1-25 of 499  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. V Mikenas vs L Schmitt 1-0261931BrnoD67 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox Defense, Bd3 line
2. V Mikenas vs Noteboom  1-0511931BrnoE38 Nimzo-Indian, Classical, 4...c5
3. V Mikenas vs Vladimir Petrov  1-04119311st Baltic championshipE23 Nimzo-Indian, Spielmann
4. F Apsenieks vs V Mikenas  0-1391931Prague ol (Men)D67 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox Defense, Bd3 line
5. V Mikenas vs E Steiner  1-0541931Prague ol (Men)E24 Nimzo-Indian, Samisch
6. Flohr vs V Mikenas 1-0341931Prague ol (Men)D17 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
7. Gruenfeld vs V Mikenas  ½-½421931Prague ol (Men)D11 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
8. V Mikenas vs Alekhine  ½-½391931Prague ol (Men)D52 Queen's Gambit Declined
9. Vidmar vs V Mikenas 0-1361931Prague ol (Men)D17 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
10. V Mikenas vs Kashdan ½-½181931Prague ol (Men)D51 Queen's Gambit Declined
11. V Mikenas vs Yates  1-0341931Prague ol (Men)D52 Queen's Gambit Declined
12. S Rosselli del Turco vs V Mikenas  0-1221931Prague ol (Men)D46 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
13. Bogoljubov vs V Mikenas  1-0541931Prague ol (Men)B29 Sicilian, Nimzovich-Rubinstein
14. V Mikenas vs Weenink  ½-½361931Prague ol (Men)D30 Queen's Gambit Declined
15. V Mikenas vs H Johner  0-1361931Prague ol (Men)E24 Nimzo-Indian, Samisch
16. M Golmayo De La Torriente vs V Mikenas  ½-½221931Prague ol (Men)B29 Sicilian, Nimzovich-Rubinstein
17. V Mikenas vs S Erdelyi  0-1681931Prague ol (Men)D04 Queen's Pawn Game
18. Rubinstein vs V Mikenas 1-0661931Prague ol (Men)D45 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
19. V Mikenas vs A Macht  0-1421932Lithuania championship matchA47 Queen's Indian
20. S Rosselli del Turco vs V Mikenas 0-1321933OlympiadE70 King's Indian
21. V Mikenas vs Maroczy 1-0311933OlympiadD67 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox Defense, Bd3 line
22. V Mikenas vs V Soultanbeieff  1-0611933OlympiadA34 English, Symmetrical
23. V Mikenas vs Flohr 1-0201933OlympiadB13 Caro-Kann, Exchange
24. Alekhine vs V Mikenas 1-0451933OlympiadA00 Uncommon Opening
25. V Mikenas vs W Fairhurst 0-1491933OlympiadD63 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox Defense
 page 1 of 20; games 1-25 of 499  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Mikenas wins | Mikenas loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 4 OF 4 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: Thanks <hemy>. I suspected as much, but wasn't sure.

It's a convenience that I think less helpful than intended, and outside your mostly exemplary work.

I do wonder about this sentence...

< Late night he was hiding from his mom and sisters to study chess games. >

Why was he hiding? (It needs a little more context)

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <zanzibar> I found your comment very helpful.

The full translation of this part:
"Vladas worked after school to earn money for living. However, despite this, he found time for chess:
late night he was hiding from his mom and sisters. He was quietly sitting near oil lamp and studied chess games."

I guess it means that his family wanted him to go sleep instead of what he was doing. I would appreciate your help to describe this properly. My English is the last of 5 languages I learned (at age 50 after moving to Canada) and not the best.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <zanzibar> I replaced the sentence you mentioned. Still not sure if it is good enough to explain the reason Vladas was hiding. Any help would be welcomed.
Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: <Hemy> I'd be glad to help you.

But I think <AnnieK> also offered to help, so I'll just hang back for the moment.

But you can ask whenever you like. Cheers.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <zanzibar><AnnieK> Thanks for your remarks and help.

Vladas Mikenas was a great chess player and one of the nicer persons I met I my life. evaluate his best performance (Riga, 1959) by 2742 and his best World Rank as number 12 on July 1945 (

For me he was a teacher and mentor in Vilnius chess club and teammate in Lithuania team in 1967. He visited our house when my parents invited him for dinner. He was sharing his knowledge not only with his students. His analysis of Alekhine defense were published many times in Soviet chess magazines.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Annie K.: <hemy> always nice to hear the stories you have to tell!

Sorry for the delay - I started editing the bio today, just the first 6 paragraphs so far. I will continue tomorrow. :)

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <Annie> As you know I made the research about Jewish chess players from Lithuania for the book of my friend Eugenijus Paleckis.

I wanted to share with you amazing story about real life and history at the same time.

On June 27th 2014 I and my wife arrived to Montpelier, Vermont to visit our daughter Maayan and her husband. At the first evening Maayan introduced me David Fried that together with his wife are taking care about small Jewish community in the city. David came to meet us and to say that we raised great daughter. After few minutes, after he asked me about my country of origin, he asked what city I from. I guess not everyone in Vermont know the names of the cities like Vilnius and Kaunas. Then he asked me if I knew about chess players: Macht, Luckis, Vistanetskis. You can not imagine how exited he became after my answers.

37 years ego David started friendship with Tadas Žilevičius. After many years Tadas told David that from 1943 in Kaunas his parents hided 4 years old Jewish girl Genia. In 1957 Genia moved to Israel, she exchanged letters with Danielius, father of Tadas, but in 1963 when Danielius passed away the family lost with her connection.

David visited in Israel to search for Genia, to connect her with Tadas and his sister Judita. On his second visit in Israel in 2005 he met her and connected her back to the family.

Danielius Žilevičius was chess player in Lithuania team and friend of Macht, Luckis and Vistaneckis.

On April 26, 2006 Yad Vashem recognized Ona Zilius (Žilevičienė), Danielius Žilevičius and Adolfina Žilevičienė as Righteous Among the Nations.

On June 30th 2014 we visited Tadas in his house about 1 hour driving from Montpelier. His sister Judita came to meet us as well.

On the page 72 of the book on the picture you can see David staying and watching, I'm showing to Tadas and Judita the draft of the book on my laptop.

The story of this amazing family is already in the book. This is a history.
To meet David, Tadas and Judita is a gift that makes the life better.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Annie K.: <hemy> thanks for recounting that! :)

I'm making some more progress with the bio here, a question: in one place, the spelling is 'Mikėnas' - is that a typo, or the correct punctuation of his name?

Premium Chessgames Member
  cro777: Mikėnas is a Lithuanian language family name.

Lithuanian has the usual Latin-based alphabet with 9 extra letters. One of these extra letters is ė, with the dot above (pronunciation similar to the first "e" in "there").

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <Annie> Regarding the spelling of his family name, "Mikenas" in English and "Mikėnas" in Lithuanian, <cro777> already explained. In the book of my friend Eugenijus Paleckis you will found Lithuanian spelling.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Annie K.: Great, thanks <cro> and <hemy>. I like to use the authentic native spelling the first time a player's name is introduced, in the first paragraph of the bio. :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <Annie> Lithuanians are not using fathers name for displaying persons name. They would use Vladas Mikėnas instead of Vladas Jonovich Mikėnas, which is proper name for using Russian language.

As noted Eugenijus Paleckis, father name is in use only in formal documents, like passports, diplomas, etc. In this case it would be "Vladas Mikenas, Jono". For the bio or articles in Lithuanian language his name should be "Vladas Mikėnas" or "Vladas Mikenas".

Premium Chessgames Member
  Annie K.: Done. :) Another question: in paragraph 9, you mention a Povilas Vaitonis - is that the same person as Paul Vaitonis that you linked in the same paragraph?
Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <Annie> Thanks for your help.

Sure, this is the same man, but his name was Povilas in Lithuania, which was later translated to English as Paul.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Annie K.: <hemy> thanks, I've finished editing the bio now. :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: <However, despite this, he found time for chess;>

As almost always, "However" can safely be deleted.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Annie K.: It can also be safely left alone. There's nothing wrong with it. Your personal dislike of the word does not actually constitute a reason to eradicate it from the language, or the bios here. :)
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: "However, despite this, regardless, nonetheless" How many repetitions does it take to be wrong in your book?
Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <tabanus>If you need the photo of Vladas Mikenas you can get it from this:
Premium Chessgames Member
  Annie K.: The photo will come back soon, it's just temporarily dissociated because of the name change. :)

<Ohio> if the order of the sentence had been "however, he found time for chess despite this" you might see more clearly that, "stylistic preferences" aside, it's not wrong.

Apr-17-17  Strelets: Vladas Mikėnas looks like he could've had quite a career in film noir.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: <Strelets: Vladas Mikėnas looks like he could've had quite a career in film noir.

lol. He's got the black-and-white fedora for it, showing he's a mix of the bad and the good guy

May-05-17  hudapri: A nearly forgotten Great!
Jan-11-18  Paint My Dragon: Nicely illustrated and occasionally humorous biography at chess24 - well worth a read:

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: Picture of 20 years old Vladas Mikenas playing with Efim Bogoljubov from "Segodnia", ("Today"), December 15, 1930, p. 6.

In December 1930, Tallinn (Revel) hosted a tournament with the participation of seven local players and guest Efim Bogoljubov. Mikenas defeated Bogoljubov in the decisive game and took first place.

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