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Leonid Alexandrovich Shamkovich
L Shamkovich 
Number of games in database: 920
Years covered: 1950 to 1998
Highest rating achieved in database: 2540

Overall record: +320 -268 =332 (52.8%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database.

With the White pieces:
 Sicilian (116) 
    B20 B33 B32 B46 B67
 Ruy Lopez (67) 
    C78 C87 C95 C67 C93
 King's Indian (39) 
    E61 E80 E81 E92 E90
 French Defense (38) 
    C05 C07 C04 C18 C09
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (33) 
    C95 C87 C93 C99 C97
 French Tarrasch (26) 
    C05 C07 C04 C09 C03
With the Black pieces:
 Sicilian (135) 
    B42 B89 B40 B21 B43
 English (27) 
    A16 A15 A14 A17 A13
 English, 1 c4 c5 (26) 
    A30 A34 A36 A37 A31
 Sicilian Kan (24) 
    B42 B43 B41
 Caro-Kann (22) 
    B18 B13 B11 B14 B12
 Nimzo Indian (22) 
    E41 E52 E44 E46 E32
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   L Shamkovich vs A Anguiano, 1978 1-0
   L Shamkovich vs V Zheliandinov, 1959 1-0
   L Shamkovich vs Benko, 1978 1-0
   L Shamkovich vs G Lebredo, 1978 1-0
   I Platonov vs L Shamkovich, 1971 0-1
   Fedorowicz vs L Shamkovich, 1980 0-1
   L Shamkovich vs V Tukmakov, 1970 1-0
   Taimanov vs L Shamkovich, 1954 1/2-1/2
   L Shamkovich vs Joel Benjamin, 1976 1-0
   L Shamkovich vs D Blohm, 1977 1-0

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   USSR Championship 1964/65 (1964)
   Palma de Mallorca (1966)
   Hastings 1977/78 (1977)
   Rio de Janeiro Interzonal (1979)
   USSR Championship 1961b (1961)
   Lone Pine (1975)
   Lone Pine (1976)
   Lone Pine (1977)
   USSR Championship (1972)
   Lone Pine (1979)
   USSR Championship (1971)
   USSR Championship (1960)
   Lone Pine (1981)
   Lone Pine (1978)
   Lone Pine (1980)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Palma de Mallorca 1966 by Tabanus
   US Championship 1978 by suenteus po 147
   US Championship 1980 by suenteus po 147

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(born Jun-01-1923, died Apr-22-2005, 81 years old) Russia (federation/nationality United States of America)
[what is this?]
Leonid Alexandrovich Shamkovich was born in Rostov-on-Don in the Soviet Union. Awarded the GM title in 1965 he emigrated to the USA via Israel and Canada. He was 5th= in the 32nd USSR Championship 1964-65 and in other tournaments he finished 1st= at Sochi 1967, 1st= at Timisoara 1972, 1st at Calgary 1975 (Canadian open), 1st= at New York 1976, 1st= in the 1976 US Open and 1st= at New York 1977. He was also a well known chess author. He passed away in his home in Brooklyn, New York in 2005.

source: "Leonid Shamkovich, 81, Ex-Soviet Chess Grandmaster, Is Dead" by Dylan Loeb McClain -

Wikipedia article: Leonid Shamkovich

 page 1 of 37; games 1-25 of 920  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. A Bannik vs L Shamkovich 1-0461950URS-ch sfA07 King's Indian Attack
2. Novotelnov vs L Shamkovich 1-0531950URS-ch sfD45 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
3. L Shamkovich vs D Rovner  ½-½531950URS-ch sfA25 English
4. Krogius vs L Shamkovich 1-0301951RUS-chA70 Benoni, Classical with 7.Nf3
5. Estrin vs L Shamkovich  1-0361951URS-ch sfB50 Sicilian
6. N Aratovsky vs L Shamkovich 0-1321951RUS-chD31 Queen's Gambit Declined
7. L Shamkovich vs S Zhukhovitsky  1-0371951URS-ch sfE02 Catalan, Open, 5.Qa4
8. Taimanov vs L Shamkovich 1-0281951Chigorin MemorialC18 French, Winawer
9. L Shamkovich vs Simagin 0-1271951Chigorin MemorialD99 Grunfeld Defense, Smyslov
10. Lilienthal vs L Shamkovich 1-0191951URS-ch sfD30 Queen's Gambit Declined
11. L Shamkovich vs Taimanov  1-0501951URS-ch sfD38 Queen's Gambit Declined, Ragozin Variation
12. L Shamkovich vs V Tarasov  1-0361951URS-ch sfB74 Sicilian, Dragon, Classical
13. L Shamkovich vs G Goldberg  1-0681951URS-ch sfB13 Caro-Kann, Exchange
14. Konstantinopolsky vs L Shamkovich  0-1371952URS-ch02 corr5255D85 Grunfeld
15. L Shamkovich vs Kholmov  0-1511953URS-ch sfE04 Catalan, Open, 5.Nf3
16. Y Shaposhnikov vs L Shamkovich  1-0231953Correspondence GameA16 English
17. L Shamkovich vs J I Zilber 1-0291953RigaD38 Queen's Gambit Declined, Ragozin Variation
18. Chekhover vs L Shamkovich  1-06019533rd Soviet Team-ch finalE70 King's Indian
19. Gurgenidze vs L Shamkovich  0-14619533rd Soviet Team-ch finalA04 Reti Opening
20. L Shamkovich vs Y Shaposhnikov  1-0201954URS-ch sfD53 Queen's Gambit Declined
21. Lisitsin vs L Shamkovich  ½-½421954URS-ch sfB27 Sicilian
22. L Shamkovich vs V Zurakhov  ½-½421954URS-ch sfA70 Benoni, Classical with 7.Nf3
23. L Shamkovich vs Estrin  ½-½221954URS-ch sfD87 Grunfeld, Exchange
24. L Shamkovich vs Chekhover  0-1241954URS-ch sfD40 Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch
25. Nezhmetdinov vs L Shamkovich 1-0341954URS-ch sfB94 Sicilian, Najdorf
 page 1 of 37; games 1-25 of 920  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Shamkovich wins | Shamkovich loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Mar-18-07  LivBlockade: <syracrophy> Good problem. How about 1...gxf3, with the following lines: 2. c7+ ♔c8; 3. ♗f5+ ♖d7!; 4. ♗h3 f2; followed by 5...f1=♕ and 6...♖xc7 draws. So White must answer 1...gxf3 with 2. ♗xf3. But after 2. ♗xf3, Black plays 2...♖d7!! when 3. cxd7 is stalemate and if 3. c7+ ♖xc7 draws. So White can try 3. ♗g4, but then Black plays 4...♖b7! when 5. cxb7 ♔xb7 followed by ...♔xb6 draws, and if not 5. cxb7, then moves such as 5. ♔d6 fail to 5...♖xb6 pinning the c-pawn, so Black draws with 6...♖xc6. Instead of 3. ♗g4, White can try 3. ♔e6, but then 3...♖b7!! again draws because 4. cxb7 is another pretty stalemate. Very nice problem. I saw the ...♖d7 stalemate theme quickly, but struggled with how to get there. The line I originally overlooked was that after 1...gxf3; 2. c7+ ♔c8; 3. ♗f5+; Black can interpose with 3...♖d7! and suddenly White's pawns are blockaded while Black's passed pawn will force White's Bishop to break the pin, allowing ...♖xc7. Again, a beautiful problem. Did Shamkovich find this over the board?
Mar-19-07  MaxxLange: A friend of mine played GM Shamkovich at the US Amateur Teams about 10 years ago. Shamkovich sacked a piece, and my friend didn't find the proper defense, and lost. But, with best play, he could have offered resistance much longer. The game fragment is in Shamkovich and Cartier's book "Tactical Chess Training": Shamkovich vs. D Hunt
Mar-19-07  MaxxLange: D Hunt was rated about 1700, and was in awe...he had studied GM Shamkovich's book on sacrifices to get to 1700....and now the great man's White bishop visited h7 against his French Defense!
Dec-27-08  Caissanist: Back in 1998, Shamkovich wrote an article about Jacob Yuchtman, which mentioned that, before his death, Yuchtman had entrusted him with a collection of his annotated games that Shamkovich hoped to publish someday. Now that Shamkovich too has passed on, does anyone know what happened to the Yuchtman games?
Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: In 1975, at the Los Angles airport security check, GM Leonid Shamkovich suitcase was taken to go through the x-ray machine. Thinking that this was part of the check-in, he boarded the airplane to Cleveland for a chess tournament. It took four days to track down and recover his missing luggage.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Leonid Shamkovich was born on June1,1923 in Rostov-on-Don, USSR, and began playing chess at the age of nine. In 1941, at the beginning of World War II, his family was evacuated to Tbilisi in Soviet Georgia, where young Leonid became a Candidate Master.

After the war, Shamkovich moved to Leningrad, where he graduated from the university with a degree in physics and earned his Master's title in three years. Soon he abandoned all pursuit of a ''mainstream'' career to become a chess professional, combining tremendous activity as a player with internationally recognized work as a theoretician.

Between 1954 and 1974, Shamkovich was extremely active in the USSR. He was twice Russian Republic Champion (1954,1957) and Moscow Co-Champion with David Bronstein in 1963, narrowly losing a playoff 2.5-1-5. He participated in the famous Kiev USSR Championship with a stellar field of Soviet grandmasters, including Korchnoi, Stein, Bronstein, Tal, Geller, Kholmov, Suetin and Vasyukov. He went on compete a total of six times in the USSR Championship, sharing 5th place in 1964. In 1962, Shamkovich competed in his first international tournament, the Moscow International, finishing equal third behind Averback and Vasyukov and earning an International Master norm. In Marianske Lazen (1965) he finished third behind Hort and Keres, achieving his first grandmaster norm. At Sochi (1967) he tied for first with Krogius, Simagin, Spassky and Zaitsev. During this same period, Shamkovich was also second and trainer to Tal (1965) and Stein (1972), publishing a prodigious number of theoretical works, including the book ''Sacrifice in Chess''. During 1969-1972 he won three international tournaments in Romania and Hungary.

In 1975 he emigrated to Israel, winning their Open Championship. The following year he came to the US via Canada and established permanent residence. He has been a US citizen since 1983. Since arriving in the US he has won the US Open twice (1976,1977), qualified for the 1979 Interzonal in Rio, and competed in the 1980 Malta Olympiad. Shamkovich is still playing strong chess, writing internationally recognized books and articles, and serving as one of America's most qualified and experienced coaches.

Shamkovich is a popular author. His book ''Sacrifice in Chess'' was translated for publication in the US. He has authored or co-authored works such as ''The Tactical World of Chess'', ''Fischer vs Spassky, 1992'' and ''The Schliemann Defense'', among others.''

(From the introduction of ''The Chess Terrorist's Handbook'', 1995) found here:

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: The first GM I ever faced in tournament play, in the third round of the New England Open in Merrimack, NH.

The night before, I'd had an 8.5 hour marathon with Danny Kopec; I went to the pairing sheet that Sunday morning of Labour Day weekend to find myself with an even tougher nut to crack this time round!

In the game itself, I played the line 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 b6 5.Ne2 Ba6 6.a3 Bxc3+ 7.Nxc3 d5 8.b3; the 4....b6 line was one I would often play as Black through the 1990s.

While I don't remember any more specifics about this game, other than Shamkovich marching his king all the way into my position with heavy pieces still on the board, this is one of my games against GMs I shall not forget.

May-12-11  Marcelo Bruno: He and another writer did an excellent article about Jacob Yuchtman: they were awarded with the best prize for a chess biography.
May-12-11  I play the Fred: I read that article on Yuchtman. It was very interesting about a player I hadn't heard of before.
Jun-01-11  talisman: happy b'day leonid..RIP.
Premium Chessgames Member
  PhilFeeley: Another game for some reason <> does not have. Again, found on Kevin Spraggett's blog:

click for larger view

Shamkovitch - Kholmov, Baku, 1961.

White to play and win.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Phil Feeley> Come again?

L Shamkovich vs Kholmov, 1961 fills the bill.

Oct-26-13  hedgeh0g: Related to <Shams>?
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: Kevin did it again - extended biographical infos and memories + some nice tactical crumbs:


Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <The endgame is an arena in which miraculous escapes are not uncommon> - Leonid Shamkovich.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <In modern praxis lost positions are salvaged most often when the play is highly complicated with many sharp dynamic variations to be calculated> - Leonid Shamkovich.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <A real sacrifice involves a radical change in the character of a game which cannot be effected without foresight, fantasy, and the willingness to risk> - Leonid Shamkovich.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <Objectivity and presence of mind are essential in such positions where sacrificial temptations are not always resistible> - Leonid Shamkovich.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <The proper timing of an attacking plan is a difficult matter which places great strain on a player's nerves. Mastery of this art is required for success in the international arena, but perfect mastery eludes even the very best chessplayers!> - Leonid Shamkovich.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <A great chess player always has a good memory> - Leonid Shamkovich.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: Rest in peace, Leonid Shamkovich.
May-09-16  Howard: Agreed! He wrote some good articles for "Chess Life"---no doubt about it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: Happy birthday, Leonid Shamkovich.
Jun-02-16  Boomie: I was walking down the sidewalk at Lone Pine and saw GM Shamkovich walking toward me. He may have had an adjourned game because he was absorbed in thought. He was so absorbed, in fact, that he walked into a lamp post. Almost without losing a step, he proceeded as before.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: I walked into a lamp post once. True story.
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