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Vladimir Petrov
Vladimir Petrov 
Number of games in database: 183
Years covered: 1925 to 1942

Overall record: +75 -49 =59 (57.1%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database.

With the White pieces:
 Queen's Pawn Game (14) 
    D02 D04 D05 E00 A46
 Slav (9) 
    D15 D17 D12 D11
 Catalan (9) 
    E02 E01 E06
 Sicilian (7) 
    B62 B83 B25 B40 B63
 Nimzo Indian (6) 
    E46 E49 E47 E33 E44
 King's Indian (5) 
    E60 E67
With the Black pieces:
 French Defense (16) 
    C10 C11 C05 C01 C18
 Sicilian (14) 
    B74 B84 B58 B72 B40
 Queen's Pawn Game (12) 
    D02 D04 A40 E00 A45
 Nimzo Indian (8) 
    E34 E23 E22 E37
 French (8) 
    C10 C11 C13 C00
 Slav (7) 
    D19 D16 D15 D10 D13
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Vladimir Petrov vs Alekhine, 1938 1-0
   Vladimir Petrov vs R Grau, 1939 1-0
   Rellstab vs Vladimir Petrov, 1937 0-1
   Vladimir Petrov vs V Mikenas, 1939 1-0
   K Treybal vs Vladimir Petrov, 1933 0-1
   G Page vs Vladimir Petrov, 1933 0-1
   K Richter vs Vladimir Petrov, 1936 1/2-1/2
   Stahlberg vs Vladimir Petrov, 1938 0-1
   Vladimir Petrov vs Alekhine, 1939 1/2-1/2
   Vladimir Petrov vs Fine, 1937 1-0

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Rosario (1939)
   Kemeri (1937)
   Margate (1938)
   Semmering/Baden (1937)
   Podebrady (1936)
   USSR Championship (1940)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Vladimirs Petrovs Chess Biography by jessicafischerqueen
   Lodz 1938 (Petrov's games) by jessicafischerqueen
   Buenos Aires Olympiad 1939 (Petrov's games) by jessicafischerqueen
   Munich Unofficial Olympiad 1936 (Petrovs' games) by jessicafischerqueen
   Margate 1938 by sneaky pete
   Prague Olympiad 1931 (Petrov's games) by jessicafischerqueen
   Kemeri 1939 (Petrov's games) by jessicafischerqueen
   Rosario 1939 by Tabanus
   Stockholm Olympiad 1937 (Petrov's games) by jessicafischerqueen
   Folkstone Olympiad 1933 (Petrov's games) by jessicafischerqueen

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Vladimir Petrov
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(born Sep-27-1907, died Aug-26-1943, 35 years old) Latvia

[what is this?]

Vladimir Petrov (Latvian spelling: Vladimirs Petrovs) was born in Riga, Latvia, on 27th September 1907 (some sources list 1908 as the birth year).* Although he joined the ranks of the world chess elite in 1937, he is perhaps less well known than he should be, due to his being arrested by the NKVD in 1942 and imprisoned for the rest of his life.(1) He was subsequently expunged from Soviet chess history. Most of his colleagues in the Soviet bloc, with the notable exceptions of Alexander Koblents and Paul Keres, avoided publishing his games, or even mentioning his name in public.(2) Consequently, little was heard about Petrov in the west until long after his career and life had ended. The political turmoil of the USSR kept him from being as well known as he deserved. He notched a lifetime 50% score against both Alexander Alekhine and Jose Raul Capablanca, and defeated an impressive list of international masters including Alekhine, Keres, Samuel Reshevsky, Reuben Fine, Rudolf Spielmann, Isaac Boleslavsky, Gideon Stahlberg, Savielly Tartakower, Grigory Levenfish, Erich Eliskases, Vladas Mikenas, Karel Treybal, Georgy Lisitsin, Vladimir Andreevich Makogonov, and Alexander Kotov.

Genesis of a Master

Petrov's father ran a modest cobbler's shop in Riga, while his mother worked as a housekeeper. In 1919 Petrov was accepted at the prestigious Lomonosov High School, where he received a first rate liberal arts education. In that same year the streets of Riga were barricaded as nationalists fought Bolshevik and German armies to retain Latvian independence, which had been declared in 1918. Such concerns seemed far from Petrov's mind, however, as he enjoyed a vibrant school life centered largely around music, soccer, and gambling at cards with his friends. He and his friends grew bored with cards, and were introduced to chess by Viktors Rosenbergs, who offered to help hone their skills. Petrov soon challenged him to a 100 game chess match, which he ultimately won. In 1923 he won the school championship and joined the Riga-2 chess club, earning the 1st category rating, and a year later went on to win the reserves section of the first Latvian Championship. His optimism and spark in almost everything he tried earned him the nickname "Successful like Petka," and he was indeed successful in gaining admission to the Riga School of Jurisprudence in 1925, although he wouldn't graduate for another 16 years. In 1926 he won the strong Riga City Championship, which prompted him to devote almost all of his time to a quest to become a chess master.

Chess Olympian

Setting law books aside, Petrov instead immersed himself in the games of Latvia's strongest players, Hermanis Karlovich Mattison and Fricis Apsenieks. In his own games he favored Mattison's positional style, and soon became an expert at knowing exactly when to trade down to a winning endgame, a characteristic he would retain throughout his career. His star rose quickly as he finished shared 2nd in the 1926 Latvian Chess Congress. Two years later he joined the Latvian team on 3rd board at the inaugural FIDE Chess Olympiad at The Hague, and he would go on to play for Latvia in all the Chess Olympiads up to 1939, garnering a gold medal on 3rd board at Prague 1931 and a bronze medal on 1st board at Buenos Aires 1939. He won his first Latvian Championship in 1930, and tied Apsenieks in the 1934 edition. Petrov had his heart set on playing 1st board for the Olympic team, so instead of a playoff match to decide the Latvian championship, Petrov struck a deal with Apsenieks: he would concede the title in exchange for 1st board in all subsequent Chess Olympiads.

Joining the Elite

Petrov won another Latvian championship in 1935, and gave a creditable performance on 1st board at the Warsaw 1935 Olympiad, scoring 55% and defeating both the Lithuanian and Argentine champions, Vladas Mikenas and Roberto Grau. On the strength of these results Petrov was invited to his first major international tournament, the Czech Championship in Podebrady (1936). Despite a disappointing 10th place finish, Petrov was included in another top event, this time on his home turf in Riga. At Kemeri (1937) he stunned the chess world by finishing shared 1st with Reshevsky and Salomon Flohr, ahead of both Alekhine and Keres. Reshevsky and Flohr decided that it was most fitting that Petrov should accept the tournament prize from Latvian president Karlis Ulmanis. In addition, he was also awarded a silver cup donated by the Aron Nimzowitsch family, honoring the "best result by a Latvian against a foreign master" for this brilliancy with the black pieces- Rellstab vs Vladimir Petrov, 1937. Petrov also earned the title of Grandmaster, due to a widely recognized convention in European chess at this time that if a home town player won a tournament in which at least six foreign Grandmasters participated, then that player would also be recognized as a Grandmaster. Petrov's surprise victory at Kemeri created a stir among European chess journals, which now began referring to him as a "Latvian Grandmaster."(3) He also received laudatory notices from prominent peers such as Max Euwe, Emanuel Lasker and Alexander Alekhine.

More invitations to premier events were forthcoming, but Petrov lacked consistency at the top level and he logged uneven international results from 1937-1939. He finished dead last at Semmering/Baden (1937) against a very tough field, featuring Capablanca, Keres, Fine, Reshevsky and Flohr. Petrov fared much better at Talinn 1938 in the Latvia-Estonia team match, leading his side to victory by defeating Keres 1.5-.5 on first board. He then finished a respectable third at Margate (1938), surprising Alekhine by almost checkmating him in the middle of the board- Vladimir Petrov vs Alekhine, 1938. After disappointing his Latvian fans with a dismal eighth place at Kemeri 1939, Petrov rebounded yet again with a bronze medal performance on 1st board at the Buenos Aires 1939 Olympiad. He scored 71% without losing a game, prompting Harry Golombek to remark "Petrov played the best chess at Buenos Aires."

Life as a Soviet Master

Shortly after a harrowing return journey from Buenos Aires through mine-filled seas, the Olympic bronze medalist was faced with a new challenge. Not only was Europe at war, but in 1940 the Soviet Union invaded Latvia and established a puppet communist government. No more would Latvia field Olympic teams, and Petrov was no longer allowed to participate as an organizer of Latvian chess events. At first, however, Petrov was guardedly optimistic about this upheaval. Although he had always been dubious and wary about the Bolshevik life in Russia, he and his wife Galina had long been members of what might be termed Latvia's Russian cultural intelligentsia. Though both considered themselves Latvian, they were steeped in Russian music, literature, theatre, and dance, and frequently attended such cultural events in Riga. Perhaps of most interest to Petrov, however, was that he now found himself an official Soviet chess player. He was awarded the title of Soviet Master and became eligible for some very strong events, notably the 12th USSR Championship (1940). Petrov did well to finish in the middle of the field, behind future world champions Mikhail Botvinnik and Vasily Smyslov, but ahead of Grigory Levenfish, who had won the 1937 USSR Championship, and Alexander Kotov, who had finished 2nd in the 1939 Championship. In addition, he defeated both Levenfish and Kotov in their individual games. Petrov also drew both of the event's co-winners, Andre Lilienthal and Igor Bondarevsky.

On his return to Riga to rejoin his family and play in the Ninth Latvian Championship, Petrov found his wife worrying about the current Bolshevik regime. She reported that availability of food and other materials in Riga was already scarce, and even worse, local government purges and general deportations were well underway. Petrov, now employed by the Soviet TASS news agency, had experienced no particular trouble during his trip to Russia, and he tried to assuage her fears. Nonetheless, as he left again for the USSR Championship Semi-finals in Rostov-on-Don, she pressed a photo of herself and their child into his palm for "good luck." He never saw either of them again. After six rounds of the Semi-finals had been completed, in Petrov's section only Alexander Kazimirovich Tolush had a better score, and it seemed that he was destined to qualify for his second USSR Championship.(4) However, the Semi-final was abandoned on 23 June 1941 when news reached the tournament that the Germans had invaded the Soviet Union. There was a mad rush as the players attempted to reach home. Petrov, accompanied by Latvian chess colleagues Alexander Koblents and Janis Fride, was halted at the Abrene customs station and informed that he could travel no further, as the Germans had already overrun Latvia. Petrov was forced to return to Moscow, but soon left for Gorky to volunteer in the Russian-Latvian Rifle Division. He was summoned back to Moscow in the winter of 1941, where he finished second to Isaak Mazel, ahead of Vasily Panov and Vladimir Alatortsev in the Moscow City Championship. Petrov then took a position as Assistant Commandant in the Moscow council "Dynamo," devoted to organizing logistics and defense in a city many feared would soon be under siege. Despite the German advance into the heart of Russia, however, the Soviet Chess Section still managed to keep organizing tournaments. At the Moscow national tournament in 1942 Petrov finished 2nd behind Bondarevsky, ahead of Alatortsev, Mikenas, and Panov. Evacuated to Sverdlosk in 1942, Petrov competed in another national tournament, finishing second to Viacheslav Ragozin, ahead of Alexey Sokolsky, Boleslavsky, and Georgy Ilivitsky.


Characteristically, Petrov had a habit of speaking frankly to friends and colleagues about his impressions of life in Soviet Latvia and Russia, some of which were critical of the Bolshevik regime. According to both Galina Petrova and Russian historian Sergey Voronkov, three fellow chess masters denounced Petrov to the authorities.(5) After Sverdlovsk, Vladas Mikenas recalls that he expected to see Petrov participate at the next major tournament in Kuibishev, but he never showed up. On August 31, 1942, Petrov was arrested and questioned for two weeks in Moscow at Lubyanka prison for violating "Article 58," a catch-all law that forbade any kind of anti-Soviet statements or activities. He was subsequently transferred to Moscow's notorious Butyrka jail for a further five months of detention and interrogation. On February 3, 1943 Petrov was sentenced to ten years in Vorkuta Gulag for criticizing decreased living standards in Latvia after the Soviet annexation of 1940. According to a death certificate released by the KGB in 1989, Petrov died of pneumonia in, or en route to, the gulag on August 26, 1943.(5)


Galina Petrova lost contact with her husband in 1942, and spent the rest of her life trying to find out what happened to him. Galina was given conflicting reports of his arrest and detention, so she moved to Siberia in an attempt to find any record he had been at a gulag. After Stalin's death in 1954, Nikita Khrushchev rehabilitated the names of thousands who had died during "The Terror," but the conviction against Petrov was upheld. It would not be until the era of Glasnost that Mikhail Gorbachev finally rehabilitated Vladimir Petrovs' name with an official pardon in March 1989.


(*) There are conflicting sources on the birth year of Vladimirs Petrovs. The Russian Wikipedia article, for example, gives *both* 1907 and 1908 as the birth year: Wikipedia article: %D0%9F%D0%B5%D1%82%D1%80%D0%BE%D0%B2, %D0%92%D0%BB%D0%B0%D0%B4%D0%B8%D0%BC%D0%B8%D1%80 %D0%9C%D0%B8%D1%85%D0%B0%D0%B9%D0%BB%D0%BE%D0%B2%D0%B8%D1%87 (%D1%88%D0%B0%D1%85%D0%BC%D0%B0%D1%82%D0%B8%D1%81%D1%82) In the kibbitzing section below, you can read a detailed account of which sources favor which birth year.

(1) The NKVD (Peoples Commissariat for Internal Affairs) was a predecessor of the KGB.

(2) Andris Fride <Vladimirs Petrovs: A Chessplayer's Story - From Greatness to the Gulags>, Caissa Editions, 2004.

(3) Vladimir Dedkov, ed. <Star Extinguished Before its Time> Riga, 2008

(4) At Rostov-on-Don 1941, the USSR Championship semifinal was organized into four separate sections. When the tournament abruptly ended, Petrov sat second in his section, a half point behind Tolush.

(5) Alexei Shirov, with Sergey Voronkov and Vladimir Dedkov <"Restoring the Annals of Latvian Chess History"> (ru)


Andris Fride <Vladimirs Petrovs: A Chessplayer's Story - From Greatness to the Gulags>, Caissa Editions, 2004.

Vladimir Dedkov, ed. <Star Extinguished Before its Time> Riga, 2008

Sergey Grodzensky <The Lubyanka Gambit>, Olympia Press, Moscow 2004

Alexei Shirov, with Sergey Voronkov and Vladimir Dedkov <"Restoring the Annals of Latvian Chess History"> (ru)

Biographical Game Collections

1.Game Collection: Vladimirs Petrovs Tournaments/Matches 1923-1942

2.Game Collection: Vladimirs Petrovs Chess Biography

Last updated: 2018-07-16 01:52:12

 page 1 of 8; games 1-25 of 184  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Vladimir Petrov vs A Strautmanis  ½-½381925Russian Secondary-City Gymnasium matchC80 Ruy Lopez, Open
2. Vladimir Petrov vs Indrikis Strazdins 1-02219262nd Latvian Chess CongressD60 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox Defense
3. Movse Feigin vs Vladimir Petrov  0-1311928Latvian Team Select Control TournamentC14 French, Classical
4. Vladimir Petrov vs K Makarczyk 1-0481928OlympiadD64 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox, Rubinstein Attack
5. Vladimir Petrov vs W A T Schelfhout  ½-½261928OlympiadD92 Grunfeld, 5.Bf4
6. J Turn vs Vladimir Petrov  0-1311929Match Tartu univ. - Riga univ.D35 Queen's Gambit Declined
7. Vladimir Petrov vs J Turn  ½-½651929Match Riga univ. - Tartu univ.D52 Queen's Gambit Declined
8. Tartakower vs Vladimir Petrov 0-1321930Hamburg ol (Men)A45 Queen's Pawn Game
9. Marshall vs Vladimir Petrov 1-0161930Hamburg ol (Men)E11 Bogo-Indian Defense
10. Vladimir Petrov vs S Landau  1-0511930Hamburg ol (Men)E60 King's Indian Defense
11. Vladimir Petrov vs A Pokorny  1-0391930Hamburg ol (Men)E11 Bogo-Indian Defense
12. V Mikenas vs Vladimir Petrov  1-04119311st Baltic championshipE23 Nimzo-Indian, Spielmann
13. L Hanssen vs Vladimir Petrov  0-1431931Prague ol (Men)B74 Sicilian, Dragon, Classical
14. G A Thomas vs Vladimir Petrov  1-0381931Prague ol (Men)B74 Sicilian, Dragon, Classical
15. W Rivier vs Vladimir Petrov  0-1641931Prague ol (Men)B56 Sicilian
16. Vladimir Petrov vs A Cruusberg  1-0531931Prague ol (Men)C11 French
17. Vladimir Petrov vs A Vajda  1-0351931Prague ol (Men)B13 Caro-Kann, Exchange
18. J Rejfir vs Vladimir Petrov 1-0521931Prague ol (Men)D51 Queen's Gambit Declined
19. A Gromer vs Vladimir Petrov  0-1541931Prague ol (Men)B74 Sicilian, Dragon, Classical
20. Vladimir Petrov vs K Kullberg  1-0271931Prague ol (Men)B40 Sicilian
21. K Treybal vs Vladimir Petrov 0-1431933OlympiadB58 Sicilian
22. Vladimir Petrov vs E Gilfer  1-0321933OlympiadA22 English
23. G Page vs Vladimir Petrov 0-1231933OlympiadD02 Queen's Pawn Game
24. E Eliskases vs Vladimir Petrov  1-0601933OlympiadA04 Reti Opening
25. Vladimir Petrov vs P Vaitonis 0-1261933OlympiadD34 Queen's Gambit Declined, Tarrasch
 page 1 of 8; games 1-25 of 184  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Vladimir Petrov wins | Vladimir Petrov loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 9 OF 9 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Premium Chessgames Member

<hemy> That is brilliant! They uploaded the whole Päewaleht newspaper it looks like, and you can even download the pdf.

By downloading and using the handy "zoom" function I was able to see that <Petrovs> played first board as well.

You are breaking new ground in <Vladimirs Petrovs> studies.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: The Latvian newspaper "Kurzemes Vārds", August 15, 1936, p. 1:

"Latvian Chess Players Victory.
Antwerp, 14. VIII.
Yesterday started Riga-Antwerp city chess match. Petrovs on the first day defeated Dunkelblum, Hazenfuss - Frank, Endzelins - Mrs Stofel, Ozols — Deneju un Melngailis — Geisen, but Krumins lost to Perlmuter. Undecided left games Apšenieks - Ferochov, Feigins - Sapira, Mežgailis - Grabuā and Kalniņš - Demunk.

The first game sequence score is 7:3 in favor of Riga."

The Latvian newspaper "Rīts", August 16, 1936, p. 8:

"Antwerp, 14. VIII.
Riga - Antwerp city tournament - on the second day Petrovs defeated Dunkelblum, Apšenieks - Jerochov, Krumins - Perlmuter, Endzelins - Mrs Stofel and Ozols - Denegu, but Kalnins lost Demunk and Feigins - Sapira. Mezgailis - Grabua, Melngailis -Geisen and Hazenfuss - Frank party remained undecided.

On the second day Riga dominated with 6.5: 3.5, but for both of these days, Riga's supremacy was 13.5: 6.5."

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <jessicafischerqueen> <Ventspils Chess Club 30th Memorial Tournament>

The Latvian newspaper in Russian Language "Сегодня" ("Today"), August 30, 1929, Page 8:

The 30th anniversary the Vindava (Ventspils) chess Club (society) will celebrate on August 31 at 23 pm in the hotel "Rome". In the jubilee tournament of the society will participate from Riga: Maestro Fr. Apshenek and well known chess players T. Berg, N. Elisson, E. Gize, V. Petrov ...

The Latvian newspaper in Russian Language "Сегодня" ("Today"), September 11, 1929, Page 8:

In Vindava (Ventspils) all prizes were given to chess players from Riga.

Ventspils, the 10th of September.
Today ended the Ventspils chess tournament.
1st prize was awarded to Strautmanis (Riga) with 11.5, the second - Apshenek with 10, the 3rd - Berg with 9.5 points.

Premium Chessgames Member

<hemy> Wonderful, thank you.

I put your new information into the list Game Collection: Vladimirs Petrovs Tournaments/Matches 1923-1942

I was relieved to see that in the case of <Ventspils> Fride got his information correct. I was not able to see in the newspapers though if <Petrovs-Dunkelblum> was first board or not.

Premium Chessgames Member

<hemy> There are two other events mentioned in <Fride> that I cannot find confirmation for anywhere else.

He says that in 1937 "The Riga Seniors' club had agreed to play a correspondence match with Budapest and the selected playing committee was: K. Betins, Captain of the team; players/analysts: A. Kalnins, V. Petrovs and P. Dreimanis."

For 1937 <Fride> also mentions that "The first Baltic Student 'Olympiad' for Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania ended with a Latvian win, Petrovs playing the first board and scoring 3 out of 4."

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <jessicafischerqueen> I already expressed my opinion about time and event when Petrov was awarded 1st category rank - Vladimir Petrov (kibitz #168)

Now I found confirmation.
The Latvian newspaper in Russian Language "Сегодня" ("Today"), December 12, 1926, p. 4:

On Thursday, December 23, 1926 in the Riga Chess Club opens the 2nd Latvian chess congress. There will be one main tournament for players of the 1st category to compete for the title of maestro and two side events for the player to compete for the 1st category rank.

At the 1st Latvian chess congress the title of the 1st category was awarded to V. Petrov, who is now participating in the main tournament.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: 2 new games added, thanks to <>.

J Turn vs Vladimir Petrov, 1929

Vladimir Petrov vs J Turn, 1929

Premium Chessgames Member

<hemy> Again you come through with the hard facts. I added your information to the list:

Game Collection: Vladimirs Petrovs Tournaments/Matches 1923-1942

I wonder if it is possible to find reliable confirmation about when <Petrovs> was given the Latvian Master title?

This morning I printed out over 200 pages worth of articles and sections of books about <Petrovs> that I have "translated" over the years (with google). According to <Galina Petrova's> memoirs, <Petrovs> got a Category I title after the first Latvian Championship, "earning the right to challenge the Congress of Latvian chess" for the "title of national master."

She then says that <Petrovs> got the national Master title after he finished shared 2nd in the second Latvian Championship. That is what I wrote in the bio of <Petrovs>, but it would be much better if we had a contemporaneous source as well.

<hemy> which do you think is better for our list- to call it the "Latvian Championships" or the "Latvian Congresses"?

I think congress is more accurate because there are always sub divisions in the championships. But on the other hand most people list these events as the "Latvian Championships," such as wikipedia, maybe because it is easier to understand?

"Congress" doesn't necessarily mean "Championship."

Anyways I can't decide which one to use.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <jessicafischerqueen> < in 1937 "The Riga Seniors' club had agreed to play a correspondence match with Budapest and the selected playing committee was: K. Betins, Captain of the team; players/analysts: A. Kalnins, V. Petrovs and P. Dreimanis.>

"Rigasche Rundschau", November 6, 1937, p. 13:

Riga started correspondent chess battle with Budapest. For Riga plays Senior Club, for Budapest - the Budapest chess club. Two games are played, where the moves are transported by airmail.

The Riga committee is headed by Carl Behtings and includes: Dr. A. Kalninsch, architect P. Dreimanis and grand master W. Petrow.

Premium Chessgames Member

<hemy> Congratulations! I didn't want to jinx you, but I have been thinking that our webmaster might have put your submissions on the "fast track" because he noticed you complaining about slow upload times.

I don't know if that's true, but sometimes "The squeaky wheel gets the grease."

Premium Chessgames Member

<hemy> I added your fine upload J Turn vs Vladimir Petrov, 1929 to our list.

This is just to bookmark the game to the event.

Eventually, if we ever finish, I will start entering the games into the game list for our collection. I don't want to do that too early, because when you get a new game it is very difficult to change all the numbering, because any new game has to go in the right chronological order.

Premium Chessgames Member

Wonderful! Your latest confirmation on the correspondence data is making me feel a lot better about <Fride's> book now. Yes there are mistakes in it, but he seems to have gotten a lot of his information correct as well.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <jessicafischerqueen>

<According to <Galina Petrova's> memoirs, <Petrovs> got a Category I title after the first Latvian Championship>

In all of the contemporaneous sources in Latvian, German and Russian languages the name of this event was "1st Latvian Chess congress".

Also the name of the next "All Latvian" tournament, was "2nd Latvian chess Congress", not a championship.

The article "Apshenek - winner of chess tournament", "Сегодня", January 3, 1927, p. 5:

"Yesterday were finished all 4 tournament of the Latvian Chess Congress. ...
First prize and the title of Latvian National master received F. Apshenek (editor of chess column of <Сегодня>), collected 12.5 points ..."

Petrov shared 2-3 place in the 2nd Latvian Chess Congress, so at this time he wasn't rewarded with master title.

Premium Chessgames Member

Thanks <hemy>! I changed the Petrovs bio so that now it reads:

<His star rose quickly as he finished shared 2nd in the 1926 Latvian Chess Congress.>

I hope we can discover from contemporaneous sources when he was given the national master title.

On the names of the <Latvian Chess Congress/Championship> I also changed the names of the first two to <First and Second Latvian Chess Congress>.

I looked at the Latvian wikipedia for Latvijas šaha čempionāts and it says that at first the "Latvian Championship" was called the "Latvian Chess Congress."

According to the wiki article, only later would it be called "The Latvian Chess Championship.

Two things- I would like our list to give the actual names used for each event that are given by contemporaneous sources. I also want to make clear that when the events begin to be called "Latvian Chess Championship" that this means the winner of the highest event in a given chess congress would be called the national champion, or winner of the "Latvian Chess Championship. Similar to the way the winner of the highest group in the DSB congresses is normally called the winner of the "German Chess Championship."

This extra information could be included in parentheses, or a note maybe.

At any rate, we can only proceed as the contemporaneous data that you are finding allows us to proceed.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <jessicafischerqueen> <According to the wiki article, only later would it be called "The Latvian Chess Championship">

Yes, this is a common way to "create" history, instead of preserve it.

I found the game of Petrov against Indriķis Strazdiņš (I Strazdins and from the 2nd Latvian Chess Congress. For this game Petrov was awarded 3rd beauty prize.

It was published in "Rigasche Rundschau", February 5, 1927, p. 15.

I created pgn file and sent it with all required references to CG.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: <jessicafischerqueen>

At July 1928 Petrov still didn't own National master title.

"Сегодня", July 20, 1928, p. 6:

Latvia team for 2nd Olympiad includes maestro Mattison, maestro C. Behtings (team captain), maestro Fr. Apshenek and the winners of 2 rounds control tournament organized by the Latvian Chess Union. - A. Strautmanis and V. Petrov. Since Petrov showed masterful positional game, he was preferred on M. Feigin or A. Taube, who reached the same number of points.

Results of the tournament:
1. A. Strautmanis 7.5/10
2. V. Petrov 5/10
3. A. Taube 5/10
4. M. Feigin 5/10
5. R. Kerkovius 4.5/10
6. A. Melnbārdis 3/10

The tournament was held in June - July 1928. No exact dates were found.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hemy: The game Movsa Feigin - Petrov was played on June 27, 1928 in Control tournament for National team members selection.

It was published in "Latvis", July 6, 1928, p. 6.

This game was sent by me to CG.

The game of Petrov against Indriķis Strazdiņš from the 2nd Latvian Chess Congress is already published on CG - Vladimir Petrov vs Indrikis Strazdins, 1926

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<hemy> more stellar work, thank you so much.

The Control (qualification) tournament was in Riga, right?

I put the entry in our list here:

<Riga 1928> (June-July) Latvian National Team Selection Tournament. The top two finishers of this event would join Latvian masters H. Mattisons, F. Apesenieks, and K. Betings on the Latvian national team at the upcoming Chess Olympiad in The Hague. A. Strautmanis won the tournament. Petrovs finished shared 2nd with A. Taube and M. Feigin, but was selected to the national team over the latter because he demonstrated "masterful positional play." As it turned out, when the Hague Olympiad began neither H. Mattisons nor K. Betings competed. The Latvian national team comprised F. Apsenieks, A. Strautmanis, V. Petrovs, A. Taube, and A. Melnbardis. ["Сегодня", July 20, 1928, p.6; ]

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<hemy> Congratulations on your latest upload- I added the game to the event listing:

<Riga 1926> (20-31 December) Second Latvian Chess Congress. <Shared 2nd> with T. Bergs, behind F. Apsenieks. [Fride, pp.3-4; Di Felice, "Chess Results 1921-1930" p.150; Latvijas šaha čempionāts ] Vladimir Petrov vs Indrikis Strazdins, 1926

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<Fride> published 265 games in his Petrovs biography, and I am going through them.

I found another enigmatic event listing, no further information on it in <Fride> and none in <Di Felice>:


<Riga 1931> Riga Team Championship [Fride, p.74 ] <Fride game 59 Petrovs-Ellers, 1-0>

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<hemy> I ran into another mystery- two games <Fride> lists that could be related possibly.

In the game <Luckis-Petrovs> 0-1 with 51 moves, Fride lists the event as <Lithuania-Latvia 1931> That sounds like a match.

In another game from 1931 <Mahts-Petrovs> 0-1 with 26 moves, Fride lists the event as <Kaunas>.

<Kaunas> is in Lithuania, which is why I thought these two entries might be from the same event.

I cannot find any reference to this (these?) event(s) in Di Felice or in my new (and useless) chessbase database.

I doubt these mysterious listings have anything to do with -

<Klaipėda (Memel) 1931> (22-27 May) First Baltic Championship. <Petrovs shared 2nd> with S. Gordons, P. Leonhardt, and V. Mikenas, behind I. Vistaneckis. Fride, p.7; Gino Di Felice, "Chess Results 1931-1935" (McFarland,2006) p.26; "Esmaspaev", June 8, 1931, p.8

I did find it unusual that Di Felice does not list a crosstable for this event. He lists the event name as "1st Baltic Chess Congress + East German Chess Union."

He lists three names for three different events at this Congress

1.Championship: I. Vistaneckis
2. Haupturnier: M. Luckis
3. East German Ch: S. Fuchs

So mysterious- I brought this up because it is from the same year 1931 and M. Luckis also appears in the entry.

Finally, I changed the name of the event to <First Baltic Chess Congress>

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I submitted this game today:

According to <Fride>, this is the oldest surviving game score of a Petrovs game, played in 1922 at a five minute time control:

[Event "Blitz Match"]
[Site "Riga"]
[Date "1922.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Rosenbergs, Victors"]
[Black "Petrov, Vladimir"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B10"]
[PlyCount "29"]
[EventDate "1922"]

1. e4 c6 2. f4 d5 3. Nc3 d4 4. Na4 e5 5. Bc4 b5 6. Bxf7+ Kxf7 7. Qh5+ g6 8. Qxe5 Bg7 9. Qc5 bxa4 10. Nf3 h6 11. 0-0 Qb6 12. Ne5+ Bxe5 13. fxe5+ Kg7 14. Qf8+ Kh7 15. Rf7 mate 1-0

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  Nosnibor: <jessicafischerqueen> I assume Black was Petrov in the Blitz match although initially credited with a win in the result ends up with a loss.
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<Nosnibor> thank you yes- I will have to submit a correction slip after it gets uploaded.

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  hemy: <jessicafischerqueen> <In the game Luckis-Petrovs 0-1 with 51 moves, Fride lists the event as "Lithuania-Latvia 1931". That sounds like a match. In another game from 1931 Mahts-Petrovs 0-1 with 26 moves, Fride lists the event as "Kaunas".>

<Maht> - Aleksander Macht. His biography on CG was submitted by me.

This is the history of the matches Latvia - Lithuania (Riga - Kaunas):

The 1st traditional New Year match between Riga and Kaunas (later between Latvia and Lithuania) was held in Riga on December 28-29 1929. Riga defeated Kaunas 10-4.
On the 1st board Carl Behtings won 2 games against D. Žilevičius. On the 5nd board Petrov won 2 games against G. Gladštein.

"Latvijas Sargs", December 31, 1929, p.8.

("Сегодня", December 30, 1929, Page 6)

On January 2, 1930, the editor of "Сегодня" F. Apšenieks published (on the page 6) the game from December 29, 1929 between Petrov and Gladštein. I will create png of this game.

The 2nd match Riga - Kaunas was held in Kaunas on December 31, 1931 and January 1, 1932. Riga team arrived to Kaunas without H. Mattison, who was seriously ill. This time Riga won 7-5.
On 1st board Fr. Apshenek - A. Macht 1, 0.5 - 0, 0.5 On the 2nd board Petrov - V. Mikenas 1, 0 - 0, 1 M. Luckis played against Hasenfuss (0, 0 - 1, 1)

After the team match Petrov left for few days in Kaunas to play 4 games match with Vladas Mikenas. Mikenas won this match with result +2, -1, =1.

The Latvian chess magazine "Latvijas Šacha Vestnesis", Nr. 1, 1932, pp. 11-12 and Lithuanian newspapers "Lietuvos Aidas", January 5, 1932, p. 9, "Lietuvos Aidas", January 9, 1932, p.9 and "Dienos naujienos", January 2, p. 1.

The 3rd match Riga - Kaunas was held in Riga on 31 December 1932 - January 1, 1933. For the first time Kaunas won with result 6,5 - 5,5.

On the 1st board Fr. Apshenek - A. Macht 1-1.
On the 2nd board Mikenas - Petrov 0.5 - 1.5. The first game Petrov won, the 2nd ended with draw.

Sources: "Latvijas kareivis", January 4, p. 3 and "Lietuvos Aidas", January 7, 1933, p. 10.

The 4th match was already Latvia - Lithuania. It was held in Kaunas, this time on March 1934. Lithuania team defeated Latvia with result 10,5 - 7,5. On the 1st board Mikenas - Apshenek 0,5
1 - 0,5 0
On the 2nd board P. Vaitonis - Petrov
0,5 0,5 - 0,5 0,5

"Latvia", March 23, 1934, p. and Latvian magazine "Krusta-mikla. Šahs. Bridžs", 1934, March 17, p.170

The 5th match Latvia - Lithuania was held in Riga on March 17-18 1935. Latvia defeated Lithuania 12,5 - 7,5 .
On the 1st board Petrov won the first game against Mikenas and finished the second with draw.

Source: The Latvian magazine "P.-T. Dzive", March 1935, Lithuanian newspaper "Lietuvos žinios", March 26, p. 8.

Will continue next time.

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