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Peter Hugh Clarke
Number of games in database: 266
Years covered: 1952 to 1990
Last FIDE rating: 2300
Highest rating achieved in database: 2345

Overall record: +57 -65 =144 (48.5%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database.

With the White pieces:
 King's Indian (18) 
    E94 E61 E88 E80 E69
 Sicilian (13) 
    B93 B36 B51 B41 B73
 Nimzo Indian (13) 
    E34 E32 E39 E30 E42
 Ruy Lopez (11) 
    C67 C71 C83 C93 C63
 English (11) 
    A15 A10 A17 A12 A16
 Queen's Pawn Game (8) 
    E10 D02 A50 A46 A41
With the Black pieces:
 French Defense (21) 
    C18 C10 C07 C16 C00
 Sicilian (14) 
    B80 B42 B43 B81 B20
 Queen's Gambit Accepted (14) 
    D29 D27 D24 D23 D26
 Ruy Lopez (13) 
    C85 C69 C76 C95 C77
 King's Indian (9) 
    E66 E69 E95 E97 E65
 French Winawer (8) 
    C18 C16 C15 C17
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   P Clarke vs NN, 1978 1-0
   Larsen vs P Clarke, 1957 0-1
   P Clarke vs R Toran Albero, 1956 1-0
   P Clarke vs K Darga, 1968 1/2-1/2

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   British Championship (1975)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Hastings 1960/61 by Phony Benoni
   Hastings 1956/57 by suenteus po 147

   Petrosian vs Y Kotkov, 1946
   Petrosian vs Bondarevsky, 1950
   Petrosian vs A Pirtskhalava, 1947
   Petrosian vs I Pogrebissky, 1949
   A Kalantar vs Petrosian, 1948

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(born Mar-18-1933, died Dec-11-2014, 81 years old) United Kingdom

[what is this?]
FIDE master Peter Hugh Clarke was born in London, England. Awarded the IMC title in 1976 and the GMC title in 1980, he was British Correspondence Champion in 1977. He also finished 2nd on five occasions in the British Championship. He represented England in the Olympiads from 1954-68 with his best performance in 1956 at Moscow (+7, =5, -0). He was a writer and chess correspondent to the 'Sunday Times' and is best known for his biographies of Mikhail Tal and Tigran Vartanovich Petrosian. Clarke was also an International Arbiter (1976). He was married to Margaret E Clarke.

 page 1 of 11; games 1-25 of 266  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. A Phillips vs P Clarke  ½-½231952BCF-chC18 French, Winawer
2. P Clarke vs J Jerolim 1-0141954Amsterdam ol (Men) qual-DB06 Robatsch
3. P Clarke vs I Johannsson  1-0401954Amsterdam ol (Men) fin-AB93 Sicilian, Najdorf, 6.f4
4. Keres vs P Clarke  1-0491954Amsterdam ol (Men) fin-AC05 French, Tarrasch
5. E Joppen vs P Clarke  1-0381954Amsterdam ol (Men) fin-AC18 French, Winawer
6. P Clarke vs Pilnik  ½-½281954Amsterdam ol (Men) fin-AB93 Sicilian, Najdorf, 6.f4
7. I Kniazer vs P Clarke  ½-½361954Amsterdam ol (Men) fin-AE95 King's Indian, Orthodox, 7...Nbd7, 8.Re1
8. P Clarke vs E Gereben  0-11071954Amsterdam ol (Men) fin-AC47 Four Knights
9. P Clarke vs G Wheatcroft  1-030195542nd British ChampionshipB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
10. Wade vs P Clarke  ½-½221956Ilford PremierA54 Old Indian, Ukrainian Variation, 4.Nf3
11. P Clarke vs Fazekas  ½-½801956Ilford PremierC43 Petrov, Modern Attack
12. M J Franklin vs P Clarke  ½-½481956Ilford PremierA48 King's Indian
13. P Clarke vs C Kottnauer  0-1321956Ilford PremierB51 Sicilian, Canal-Sokolsky (Rossolimo) Attack
14. P Clarke vs A Phillips  1-0631956Ilford PremierC97 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
15. L Schneider vs P Clarke  0-1371956Moscow ol (Men) qual-CD00 Queen's Pawn Game
16. P Clarke vs B Wexler  1-0321956Moscow ol (Men) qual-CB93 Sicilian, Najdorf, 6.f4
17. M Bely vs P Clarke  ½-½561956Moscow ol (Men) fin-AB18 Caro-Kann, Classical
18. A Tsvetkov vs P Clarke  ½-½401956Moscow ol (Men) fin-AA05 Reti Opening
19. P Clarke vs Teschner  ½-½231956Moscow ol (Men) fin-AB29 Sicilian, Nimzovich-Rubinstein
20. Y Dobkin vs P Clarke  0-1421956Moscow ol (Men) fin-AC02 French, Advance
21. O'Kelly vs P Clarke  1-0361956Hastings 1956/57A24 English, Bremen System with ...g6
22. P Clarke vs R Toran Albero 1-0221956Hastings 1956/57B93 Sicilian, Najdorf, 6.f4
23. F Olafsson vs P Clarke  ½-½431956Hastings 1956/57D41 Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch
24. P Clarke vs C H Alexander  ½-½301956Hastings 1956/57E69 King's Indian, Fianchetto, Classical Main line
25. P Clarke vs A Kolarov  ½-½651957Wageningen ZonalA38 English, Symmetrical
 page 1 of 11; games 1-25 of 266  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Clarke wins | Clarke loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Oct-11-07  Petrosianic: He wrote about who was hot. They were World Champions only 2 years apart, after all.
Premium Chessgames Member
  brankat: Very fine work on both Tal and Petrosian Biographies.

Happy Birthday Mr.Clarke!

Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: "British master Peter Hugh Clarke, a former chess correspondent of the Sunday Times in London, once wrote that <short draws are necessary, a means of conserving energy.> "As such they can contribute to raising the standard of play rather than lowering it," he said."

Looking at his numerous short draws make me catch the point. :D


Oct-26-08  Silverstrike: Is his book on Tal any good?
Dec-17-08  Crocomule: His book on Tal is great.
Dec-17-08  Tessie Tura: <His book on Tal is great.>

Yes, nice book.

Dec-18-08  YoungEd: The Petrosian book is excellent, too. Batsford reissued both the Tal and Petrosian books a few years ago in their "Master of..." series.
Mar-18-09  Cibator: Yes, an excellent book (I've got a copy): fifty games analysed in sometimes exhaustive depth. But it stops at the WCM with Botvinnik in 1960.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ray keene: clarke's books on both tal and petrosian are still in print with

i recommend them both very highly-my own book on petrosian-<petrosian v the elite> written with julian simpole-deliberately avoids repeating games annotated in clarkes anthology of petrosian's games.

Mar-18-09  amaurobius: Thank you CG for making Clarke today's player of the day.

I confess I can hardly name a British player to emerge in the 50s other than Penrose, but this fella was clearly no mug as the database indicates that he had a positive record against the likes of Szabo and Larsen.

Klaus Darga seems to have had his number though!

Mar-18-09  WhiteRook48: he made Tal and Petrosian's bios??
Premium Chessgames Member
  ray keene: tal and petrosian-yes!! both of them
Sep-06-09  Open Defence: very fine work indeed
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: His "100 Soviet Chess Miniatures" is a very entertaining book.
Mar-18-12  backrank: Here's my game collection on his Tal book: Game Collection: P.H. Clarke: Mikhail Tal's best games 1951-60 (interestingly, it doesn't appear under 'game collections' on the Mikhail Tal main page).

And someone else had already compiled the games from Clarke's book on Petrosian: Game Collection: P.H.Clarke: Petrosian's Best games (which does appear on the Petrosian main page)

Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Happy Birthday POTD!
Mar-19-12  SimonWebbsTiger: for chess bibliophiles:

Clarke's book, Tal's own life and games plus the match v. Botvinnik and Joe Gallagher's book

Clarke's book, Vasiliev's Batsford bio (with annotations by Suetin), Petrosian's lectures which were issued in book form, and Hardinge and Keene's book...

enough material to keep one occupied for the next many months!

Mar-19-12  srag: <SimonWebbsTiger>: here are some more books on Tal:

a) "El ajedrez extraordinario de Miguel Tal", by Luis Palau, Editorial Mercedes Sopena, Argentina, 1962;

b) "Tal since 1960", by W. H. Cozens, British Chess Magazine, 1974;

c) "Tal's Hundred Best Games 1961-1973", by Bernard Cafferty, Batsford, 1975;

d) "Tal's Masterpieces and other selected games, 1960-1975", by Andrew Karklins,Chicago Chess Books, 1976;

e) "Selected Chess Games of Mikhail Tal", by J. Hajtun, Pitman and Sons, 1961;

f) "Tal-Botvinnik: match for the World Chess Championship 1960", by Mikhail Tal, R.H.M. Press 1977;

g) "Study Chess with Tal", by Mikhail Tal and Alexander Koblenc, Batsford 1978;

h) "Attack with Mikhail Tal", by Mikhail Tal and Iacov Damsky, Cadogan 1994;

I also remember a four volume set published by Batsford some years ago and written by Hillary Thomas, I believe.

Enough to keep a student busy for years .

Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: If I'm not mistaken, he married in 1962 to the 1966 British Ladies Champion Margaret E Clarke.
Dec-18-14  Nosnibor: Peter passed away 10/12/2014.R.I.P
Premium Chessgames Member
  Stonehenge: 11/12 according to
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: What was his career? Was he a civil servant?
Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: rest in peace, FM P.H. Clarke..

Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: Happy birthday, Peter Clarke.
Apr-14-17  zanzibar: While research USSR 1957, I came across this mention of Clarke, it's an interesting, if longish, read:


--- The Soviet School of Chess
--- by Kotov and Yudovich

- However the anonymous author of the Dover version was simply wrong.

- The American players were simply much weaker than the Soviet players.

- With the exception of Reshevsky, none of the top American players
could compete against the Soviets at the time this book was written.

- Sam Sloan

I [that is, Phil Innes] should like to verify a few things; first of all I wanted to check if Taylor Kingston was correct in suggesting the author of the Dover edition, May 1961, and he was. To substantiate this I wrote to ask him if it were okay to say so, and what other influences if any there were?

Here is a reply from Dr. Frank Brady: "I wrote the Preface, but since it was in the 1950s, I was afraid to append my name, with the implication that someone might think I was a Red. I wrote to Hayward Cirker, then publisher and owner of Dover and asked him to remove my name before the book was printed. Cirker did that and sent me a cordial letter (I still have it!) agreeing to our "deep, dark secret" that I wrote it. I don't care anymore, of course."

There are still some questions of, for example, if the last paragraph is not actually from the publisher, even if in Frank's words.

So, that seems clear, except for one other anecdote by my old team captain in England who advised that the chess was better than anything else then being published in English language [this was intended as an export book] but not to trust the lines too deeply since they were, in his words 'distracting', as if to say, you young tigers better look a bit further. His name was <P. H. Clarke>. In England there was no 'red menace' atmosphere in the fifties as there was here with McCarthy, and so cheap [important!] Russian oriented chess texts were welcome.

And finally, it was more difficult for American players to contest the Soviets, since both countries limited access to each other, but as for 'only Reschevsky', who knows? There was simply not enough opportunity to play Soviets over enough games to get psyched up for the few encounters there were. [...]


(slightly edited)!t...

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