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Botvinnik vs Smyslov Return Match 1957
Moscow

At the 1956 Amsterdam Candidates Tournament, a ten player double round robin, Vasily Smyslov again emerged victorious +6 -1 =11, 1.5 points ahead of Keres.

 Botvinnik Smyslov 1957
 Vasily Smyslov
This earned Smyslov the right to challenge Mikhail Botvinnik for a second time. The title match was held at Moscow, March 1957.

In this match, and again in 1958, Botvinnik played without the use of a second. During the 1954 match, Botvinnik felt that Smyslov was too ready for prepared variations that he (Botvinnik) had never played before. Believing that his second was leaking information, and unwilling to trust anyone else, Botvinnik played the next two matches alone.[1]

By the half way point, Smyslov had a two point lead. In 22 games, Smyslov achieved 12.5 points and became the 7th World Chess Champion.

click on a game number to replay game 12345678910111213141516171819202122
Botvinnik0½½110½0½½½01½½½0½½0½½
Smyslov1½½001½1½½½10½½½1½½1½½

FINAL SCORE:  Smyslov 12½;  Botvinnik 9½
Reference: game collection WCC Index [Botvinnik-Smyslov 1957]

NOTABLE GAMES   [what is this?]
    · Game #17     Botvinnik vs Smyslov, 1957     0-1
    · Game #6     Smyslov vs Botvinnik, 1957     1-0
    · Game #13     Botvinnik vs Smyslov, 1957     1-0

FOOTNOTES

  1. World Chess Championships by Graeme Cree

 page 1 of 1; 22 games  PGN Download 
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Botvinnik vs Smyslov 0-1411957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchA16 English
2. Smyslov vs Botvinnik ½-½451957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchB62 Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer
3. Botvinnik vs Smyslov ½-½411957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchE63 King's Indian, Fianchetto, Panno Variation
4. Smyslov vs Botvinnik 0-1411957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchB62 Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer
5. Botvinnik vs Smyslov 1-0541957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchA16 English
6. Smyslov vs Botvinnik 1-0281957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchD98 Grunfeld, Russian
7. Botvinnik vs Smyslov ½-½231957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchE45 Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3, Bronstein (Byrne) Variation
8. Smyslov vs Botvinnik 1-0411957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchB62 Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer
9. Botvinnik vs Smyslov ½-½401957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchE62 King's Indian, Fianchetto
10. Smyslov vs Botvinnik ½-½471957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchC98 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
11. Botvinnik vs Smyslov ½-½231957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchA05 Reti Opening
12. Smyslov vs Botvinnik 1-0431957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchB27 Sicilian
13. Botvinnik vs Smyslov 1-0411957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchE45 Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3, Bronstein (Byrne) Variation
14. Smyslov vs Botvinnik ½-½461957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchC18 French, Winawer
15. Botvinnik vs Smyslov ½-½561957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchE45 Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3, Bronstein (Byrne) Variation
16. Smyslov vs Botvinnik ½-½551957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchC98 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
17. Botvinnik vs Smyslov 0-1691957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchA15 English
18. Smyslov vs Botvinnik ½-½621957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchC15 French, Winawer
19. Botvinnik vs Smyslov ½-½151957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchA36 English
20. Smyslov vs Botvinnik 1-0421957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchC18 French, Winawer
21. Botvinnik vs Smyslov ½-½131957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchE60 King's Indian Defense
22. Smyslov vs Botvinnik ½-½111957Botvinnik - Smyslov World Championship MatchC11 French
 page 1 of 1; 22 games  PGN Download 
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 1 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Sep-18-06  Resignation Trap: Here's a photo of game 17 in progress:
http://www.rebel.nl/smyslov/photo19... .
Sep-18-06  positionalgenius: <Resignation Trap>Thanks for the link,thats a cool photo.
Sep-19-06  Chess Classics: I wonder if you can contribute Botvinnik's collapse in this match to not having played with a second. On the other hand, he did win back the title 3 years later under the same circumstances.

Regards,
CC

Sep-19-06  Maatalkko: Botvinnik had good reason to be suspicious of his second. I remember one famous game that Kasparov had annotated, in which Smyslov as Black had very deep prep for a kind of KID that Botvinnik hadn't yet used. Botvinnik vs Smyslov, 1954.
Oct-29-06  talisman: what was the second's name?
Dec-12-06  Ch3ckmate: what meaning or tasks does the "second" have?
Dec-12-06  code13: The second's main task was to help with analysis. In particular adjournment analysis.
Dec-12-06  Ch3ckmate: <code13> thanks for answering my questions
Feb-11-07  Open Defence: wow a lot of decisive games... for both sides....
Feb-11-07  talisman: <Open Defence> take a look at the 24th game from the 1st match.any idea why smyslov would offer draw? or agree to a draw?
Mar-19-08  Knight13: This match is really good.
Mar-20-08  positionalgenius: <Knight13> Yes- they are legends of the game...
Sep-30-08  Whitehat1963: In four of the five short "grandmaster" draws in this match, Botvinnik played white. I can only guess he was tired and needed a break and that Smyslov was happy to oblige. Are there other explanations?
Feb-07-09  bluberry66: wowww
Feb-07-09  bluberry66: people he was doing fine
Sep-17-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  Pawn and Two: In the above opening comments, it states that Botvinnik used no seconds for either the 1957 or 1958 title matches with Smyslov.

However, in "The World Chess Championships of 1957 and 1958", by Harry Golombek, he states that Botvinniks's seconds for the 1957 match were Averbakh and Goldberg, and just Goldberg for the 1958 match.

In addition to writing a book on these matches, Golombek was in attendance as an International Judge.

Perhaps Averbakh and Goldberg were seconds in name only. Does anybody have additional information regarding Botvinnik's use or not use of seconds in the 1957 & 1958 title matches?

Sep-17-09
Premium Chessgames Member
  suenteus po 147: <<Ch3ckmate: what meaning or tasks does the "second" have?> code13: The second's main task was to help with analysis. In particular adjournment analysis.> Actually, the second's main task is to fetch cheese sandwiches and beer :)
Apr-05-10
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: <suenteus po 147:

Actually, the second's main task is to fetch cheese sandwiches and beer :)>

Bent Larsen said, "Mayny people don't understand the role of a second. Their most important function is to bring their player milk and cheese sandwiches. This is what Edmonson did for Fischer".

-- "How to Get Better at Chess: Chess Masters on Their Art", pp. 65-66

Apr-24-11  bronkenstein: <Their most important function is to bring their player milk and cheese sandwiches> :)

BTW BotvinnikĀ“s finest game of the match , in his opinnion , was 13th , and almost no kibitzing there ...?

I tried to remember some of the comments on that one from his autobiography , and paraphrase them there atleast .

Jun-10-11  AVRO38: This was the first decisive title match in 20 years. Smyslov actually winning a title match before Botvinnik.
Jun-16-11  AVRO38: This is also the first World Championship match without a Queen's Gambit game!
Jan-29-14  RookFile: <During the 1954 match, Botvinnik felt that Smyslov was too ready for prepared variations that he (Botvinnik) had never played before. Believing that his second was leaking information, and unwilling to trust anyone else, Botvinnik played the next two matches alone.>

That's a fascinating tidbit.

Jan-29-14  hkfr: In Botvinnik's comments to one of the games of the 1958 match he states that Goldberg was his second.
Jan-29-14  thomastonk: In his book "Schacherinnerungen" Botvinnik mentions Goldberg as second in 1958, too, but interesting is also his report on the phase before the match. He prepared and played with Pjotr Tichonowitsch Ryschow (German transliteration), his chauffeur! He mentions him just before he turned to the Caro-Kann, which - in his view - became decisive.

That's Botvinnik!

Jan-30-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  WCC Editing Project:

Just a week after losing this match, <Botvinnik> published the following open letter:

<"I had 'firmly' resolved not to write anything about this match, but the decision of a judge is law, and at the request of the arbiter, chess-master Golombek, I have to say a few words.

If a match for the World Championship is an examination for a candidate, then it is now clear that the examination has been passed, and that the examiner himself was not sufficiently prepared for the examination.

Now the question arises: <<<Is it necessary to play a return match? Is it necessary for the chess world that the same two chess-players should play the same match (at the same time of year and at the same place)? I am most interested to hear the opinion about this, not only of British chess-players, but of chess circles all over the world.>>>

Anyhow, I hope that the chess-players of Great Britain will not refuse to accept the sincere wishes and greetings of a Soviet chess-player who, though he has lost a match for the World Championship, has still tried not to lose the sense of humor that is so essential both for the struggle and for the victory in this field.

Moscow, May 3, 1957.>

--Harry Golombek "The World Chess Championships of 1957 and 1958" (Hardinge Simpole, 1958), p.139

###################################

Despite his "question to the world" about whether or not a return match was necessary, just two months later <Botvinnik> telegrammed his challenge for that return match to FIDE president <Folke Rogard>.

-Mikhail Botvinnik "Botvinnik's Complete Games (1942-1956) and Selected Writings (Part 2)." Ken Neat, transl., ed., (Olomouc 2012), p.32

###################################

Here is <Botvinnik's> account of the process by which he decided indeed to play the return match of 1958:

<"I had to decide whether I should play a return match or not. In other words did I have hope of winning back the lost title? Over the course of two months I carried out analytical work. This established what the reader already knows. I might add that in the period from September 1956 to April 1957 I played too many games (50!). When I ceased to experience chess "hunger" I always played without any drive. I prepared my plan of preparation, but still had hesitations over taking a final decision. Podtserob came for me, we called in on Ragozin and Podtserob drove us up to the Lenin Hills.

<<<'Mikhail Moiseyevich, you simply must play the match. I have studied you, you simply can't just 'live'. If you opt out of the struggle for the world championship then you will think up something else to undertake. It's better if you just play chess.'>>>

I told my friends about the work I have done and my plans of preparation- we came to the conclusion that I should play! So I sent an official telegram to the FIDE President, and there was now no retreat.">

-Mikhail Botvinnik "Achieving the Aim" Bernard Cafferty, transl. (Pergamon 1981), p.148

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