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Milan Rodoje Vukcevich
Number of games in database: 135
Years covered: 1955 to 1979
Highest rating achieved in database: 2445

Overall record: +42 -24 =69 (56.7%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database.

With the White pieces:
 Sicilian (24) 
    B43 B84 B32 B77 B99
 Ruy Lopez (15) 
    C97 C95 C63 C88 C75
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (11) 
    C97 C95 C88 C92 C89
 French Defense (7) 
    C12 C18 C13 C11 C16
 Caro-Kann (5) 
    B18 B16 B17
 French (4) 
    C12 C11 C13
With the Black pieces:
 Ruy Lopez (19) 
    C77 C92 C91 C96 C81
 King's Indian (18) 
    E60 E70 E79 E94 E92
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (12) 
    C92 C91 C96 C90 C97
 Sicilian (5) 
    B78 B50 B92 B45 B77
 English, 1 c4 e5 (4) 
    A28 A20 A21
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Vukcevich vs Bisguier, 1969 1-0
   Vukcevich vs D Drimer, 1960 1-0
   Vukcevich vs M van Hoorne, 1960 1-0
   L Shamkovich vs Vukcevich, 1976 0-1
   Vukcevich vs H Westerinen, 1976 1/2-1/2
   Tringov vs Vukcevich, 1960 0-1

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   US Championship 1975 by suenteus po 147

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Milan Rodoje Vukcevich
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(born Mar-11-1937, died May-10-2003, 66 years old) Yugoslavia (federation/nationality United States of America)

[what is this?]

Milan Rodoje Vukcevich was born in Belgrade. He became a master at the age of sixteen. In 1955, Vukcevich drew a six-game match with future Candidates semifinalist Bent Larsen, the same year he won the Yugoslav Junior Championship. At the Leningrad Student Olympiad of 1960 he scored 11.5/13 as the third-board player for the Yugoslavian team.

In 1963, Vukcevich moved to the United States to enroll in university and study metallurgy. Four years later he took his doctorate and turned his attention once more to chess. He tied for first place at the U.S. Open of 1969 with Robert Eugene Byrne and Pal Benko, and he also ended up playing in the 1975 U.S. chess championship---his only appearance in the event. It was probably no coincidence that the tournament that year was held in Oberlin, Ohio--not far from where he was living, in Cleveland.

Vukcevich's successes were not limited to over-the-board play. In 1988 he became the first American in history to earn the title of FIDE Grandmaster of Chess Composition. A very prolific scientist, he is the only chess grandmaster ever to be considered for a Nobel Prize (chemistry), and remained a well-known university professor until his death in 2003.

Wikipedia article: Milan Vukcevich

Last updated: 2016-12-25 00:59:31

 page 1 of 6; games 1-25 of 135  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Vukcevich vs Panov 1-0211955SmederevoC12 French, McCutcheon
2. Vukcevich vs Puc  ½-½221957YUG-chB32 Sicilian
3. B Djurasevic vs Vukcevich  ½-½251957YUG-chC92 Ruy Lopez, Closed
4. Vukcevich vs Kozomara  ½-½121957YUG-chC16 French, Winawer
5. Vukcevich vs S Vukovic  ½-½291957YUG-chC97 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
6. A Bradvarevic vs Vukcevich  ½-½171957YUG-chC92 Ruy Lopez, Closed
7. V Cuderman vs Vukcevich  ½-½131957YUG-chA80 Dutch
8. Vukcevich vs R Bogdanovic  ½-½151957YUG-chC41 Philidor Defense
9. Smailbegovic vs Vukcevich  ½-½541957YUG-chC82 Ruy Lopez, Open
10. T Rakic vs Vukcevich  ½-½151957YUG-chA80 Dutch
11. Vukcevich vs Maric 1-0221957YUG-chC18 French, Winawer
12. Janosevic vs Vukcevich  1-0651957YUG-chC92 Ruy Lopez, Closed
13. Vukcevich vs Ivkov  ½-½151957YUG-chB99 Sicilian, Najdorf, 7...Be7 Main line
14. Vukcevich vs Pirc  ½-½161957YUG-chB32 Sicilian
15. Matulovic vs Vukcevich  0-1621957YUG-chC81 Ruy Lopez, Open, Howell Attack
16. N Karaklajic vs Vukcevich  1-0401957YUG-chE79 King's Indian, Four Pawns Attack, Main line
17. Vukcevich vs S Nedeljkovic  ½-½231957YUG-chC97 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
18. B Rabar vs Vukcevich 0-1221957YUG-chC86 Ruy Lopez, Worrall Attack
19. P Trifunovic vs Vukcevich  ½-½601957YUG-chC91 Ruy Lopez, Closed
20. Vukcevich vs B Tot  0-1431957YUG-chB16 Caro-Kann, Bronstein-Larsen Variation
21. Vukcevich vs B Milic  ½-½261957YUG-chC75 Ruy Lopez, Modern Steinitz Defense
22. Vukcevich vs Gligoric  ½-½201957YUG-chC97 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
23. Udovcic vs Vukcevich  1-0401957YUG-chD82 Grunfeld, 4.Bf4
24. Vukcevich vs G Szilagyi  ½-½421958SofiaB56 Sicilian
25. N Minev vs Vukcevich  ½-½151958SofiaE86 King's Indian, Samisch, Orthodox, 7.Nge2 c6
 page 1 of 6; games 1-25 of 135  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Vukcevich wins | Vukcevich loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member <DR. MILAN RADOJE VUKCEVICH, age 66, of Shaker Hts., passed away May 10, 2003 at his home. Beloved husband of Michelle (nee Kravcisin); loving father of Ivan (Anne) and Marko; beloved brother of Ivan Sprung (Eja). Preceded in death by his parents, Hristina and Radoje. Milan was an International Chess Grandmaster, Scientist, as well as Author.>

Many thanks to Honza Cervenka for providing us with over 100 PGN games of this prolific chess problemist, author, and player.

Also see: "The Beauty of Bristol" by Vukcevich

Nov-18-05  soberknight: <Also see: "The Beauty of Bristol" by Vukcevich >

Excellent article. Highly recommended!

Nov-18-05  Ivan23: There is no such thing as a "nomination for Nobel award". These are not Oscars. He could have been "in consideriation" but not "nominated".
Mar-11-07  Marmot PFL: I have not played in Ohio for many years and had not even heard that Mr. Vukcevich had died. I think he was also the teacher of IM Calvin Blocker for a few years.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Diocletian: I knew Dr. Vukcevich in the late sixties and early seventies in Cleveland where I was a student and he was a professor at Case Western Reserve University. I often encountered him on the campus or at the Cleveland Chess Club on the smoky fourth floor of the Masonic Temple near East 36th and Euclid.

In appearance Dr. Vukcevich was tall and dark with a head of thick black hair like Spassky's and the handsome looks of a movie star. He was in every way a first class gentleman with a rare personal elegance and always with time to share with any chess lover, even an average club player like me. He was extremely well liked by all at the chess club and the university where he taught metallurgy and published a weekly chess column in the campus paper. He cheered Fischer on during his rise and triumph, and this period of Fischer inspired chess madness was a great time to know a great player like Vukcevich. He was as accomplished in metallurgy as he was in chess, but was sometimes frustrated that his academic work prevented him from travel to the chess Olympiads and other great events in which he was invited to play against the world's best. I was much saddened a few years ago to learn of his early passing, and I write this comment in admiration of him and to make my own small contribution in honor of his memory and his games.

I played only one game against Vukcevich. It was a Winawer French in a simultaneous exhibition he gave against about thirty-some better than average opponents at the Cleveland Heights Chess Club in about late '71 or early '72. In those days I liked the inferior 5 B-R4 retreat variation of the Winawer which I was determined to somehow bolster for practical play.

Vukcevich beat me of course, as he did everyone, I think, except for one of his chess students, C.B., who obtained a win or draw ( I forget now). Vukcevich was an outstanding gentleman as usual in this contest, allowing me to pass on my move twice as he did several others. Such confidence and sportsmanship he displayed, as was typical for him!

I knew the line of the Winawer that Vukcevich likely would play because I had "inside information" from his student whom I also knew casually in local chess circles, and I was lucky that I was able to lead him into this familiar line which I had studied extensively beforehand.

Vukcevich moved along the inner perimeter of tables arranged in a large square making his initial moves: four games with P-K4 followed by four games opening with P-Q4, and then alternating between these two moves every four tables. Of course I never imagined that I could beat him, but I knew that I was ready to give him a hard fight if only I could lure him into his own favorite line of the French.

I watched him across the square playing his P-K4 and P-Q4 moves and trying to anticipate the opening he would use when he came to my table. With P-Q4 he would probably beat me much more quickly, and I would not be able to show off my "deep opening knowledge" which was pretty much restricted to this single line - Vukcevich's favorite!

As fortune would have it, he played P-K4 at my board and I got to play the Winawer I had hoped for. I couldn't beat him, but I'm proud to say that I scared him! I surprised him with an exchange sacrifice for compensation in the form of a mass of pawns that crossed to his side of the board with knives in their teeth and two commanding bishops right behind them. On two or three moves he was forced to pause for several seconds, resting on hands placed palm down on both sides of the board and leaning forward over the board and glowering darkly for several seconds as he plotted how to stop my attack. I was very proud to slow him down a bit in his race around the exhibition square!

I have analyzed this game to death with Rebel Decade, and perhaps I'll add some annotation and a diagram later; for now I'll just try to accurately copy the moves from my old score sheet. Here is the game (next comment):

Premium Chessgames Member
  Diocletian: cont'd

simultaneous exhibition
1 P-K4 P-K3
2 P-Q4 P-Q4
3 N-QB3 B-N5
4 P-K5 P-QB4
5 P-QR3 B-R4
7 Q-N4 N-K2
8 N-N5 B-B2
9 QxNP R-N1
10 QxRP BxP
11 N-KB3 R-R1
12 Q-Q3 B-N2
13 B-B4 QN-B3
14 N-B7+ K-B1
15 NxR P-K4
16 B-N3 P-K5
17 Q-N3 PxN
18 PxP P-Q6
19 R-Q1 PxP
20 QxP B-B4
21 Q-B5 P-N3
22 Q-Q6 B-B6+
23 K-K2 QxN
24 RxP B-K3
25 R-Q1 K-K1
26 K-Q3 B-B3
27 K-B2 R-R4
28 B-R6 R-Q4??

Well, what can I say? He wore me out and I blundered.

29 RxR BxR
30 QxB Resign

When I resigned, Dr. Vukcevich stayed at my table for a moment, shook my hand and in his Slavic accent said, "That was good game!" For me, that may have been my proudest moment in chess; for Dr. Vukcevich it was a typical moment for a great player and a tremendous sportsman.

Premium Chessgames Member
  fm avari viraf: If one were to write about Dr.Vukcevich this kibitz site is simply not enough! He had all the qualities of a great human being. His colossal achievements in the firmament of Chess as well as in Academic education are simply fantastic & commendable! It is a great loss to the Chess fraternity as well as to World & of course to his beloved family. May God Bless his soul peace in Heaven.
Mar-11-08  brankat: An exceptionally talented chess player, Mr.Vukchevich.

He won a master's title at the age of 16 (no computer help in those days), at the age of 18 tied a match with B.Larsen, an in the Student Olympiad, 1960 scored 11.5/13! But, his commitment to the academic pursuits prevented him from accomplishing much more in the chess arena.

Btw, I'm pretty sure his middle name is RAdoje, not ROdoje.

Happy Birthday Sir!

Mar-11-08  acirce: I remember him mostly as a fantastic composer. I think he was even more successful in that field - it depends on how you measure such stuff, of course, but in chess as a game he was "only" a very strong player, while in the world of chess problems he's one of the greatest.
Mar-11-09  brankat: R.I.P. Mr.Vukcevich.
Oct-13-09  parisattack: <Diocletian: I knew Dr. Vukcevich in the late sixties and early seventies in Cleveland where I was a student and he was a professor at Case Western Reserve University. I often encountered him on the campus or at the Cleveland Chess Club on the smoky fourth floor of the Masonic Temple near East 36th and Euclid. >

I knew him through correspondance and my best friend knew him from Cleveland about the same years. Fascinating gentleman! I have a manuscript on the KID he was writing in the 1990s that he sent to my friend and I for review. I do not think it was ever published?

Premium Chessgames Member
  vonKrolock: cg bio above <" In 1955 he drew a six-game match with future Candidates semifinalist Bent Larsen, the same year he won the Yugoslav Junior Championship."> In 1958 according to some sources, but in E. Winter's online article Donaldson confirms the date given above 1955, based in a statement of John Rasmussen of Hicksville, New York. Curious, that the date 1958 was given, apparently, by Vukcevich himself in some point...
Mar-11-10  BIDMONFA: Dr. Milan Rodoje Vukcevich


Mar-11-10  Marmot PFL: It's surprising that Vukcevich had so many games that were either won or lost in under 35 moves.
Nov-30-11  waustad: This page has some names I heard all of the time playing in tournaments in Ohio many years ago. Maybe someday I'll play again, though just being a fan is less stressful and allows me to sit on much more comfortable chairs.
Mar-11-12  brankat: <A very prolific scientist, he is the only chess grandmaster ever to be considered for a Nobel Prize (chemistry)>!

R.I.P. GM Vukcevich.

Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: from Chess Life 1998/10..

<A GM title requires 70 published problems in the FIDE albums, while an IM must have only 25; Dr. Vukcevich has over 100.>

rest in peace, Dr. Milan Vukcevich..

Mar-11-13  TheTamale: What a great story above by <Diocletian>. It is incomprehensible to me that someone can rise to grandmaster strength while gaining renown in an academic field. The level of talent and brainpower must have been enormous, not to mention his capacity for hard work.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <TheTamale: What a great story above by <Diocletian>....>


Sounds like a true gentleman.

<...It is incomprehensible to me that someone can rise to grandmaster strength while gaining renown in an academic field....>

You aren't the only one.

Then there was Euwe, who somehow managed to combine that OTB level of play with his diverse activities away from the board.

Mar-11-13  reztap: Vukcevich played first board on our team in the Cleveland Chess League prior to his first place tie at the1969 US Open. Also played first board in 1975 Cleveland Toronto chess match played in Niagara Falls Ny. He had a tremendous ego and bragged about it. All of us chess players liked and respected him.According to my wife he was very good looking. Hmmmmm. RIP Vuckie
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: <Diocletian> you had him on the ropes for sure. Unfortunate ending to the game. He should have played 19. 0-0-0 at his 19th move, to get the King off e1 due to all kinds of Knight forks from f3. As a result of Rd1, you had this position:

click for larger view

And then 19...Nd4 is probably winning.

Feb-22-17  Mike75018: Diocletian, I also knew Dr. Vukcevich in the early 70s while I was a student at CWRU. (I also remember playing in those weekend tournaments at the Masonic Temple.) All of the nice things you said about Dr. Vukcevich are true. He was a fine gentleman and a joy to be around.
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: The bio says Milan Rodoje Vukcevich won the Yugoslavian Junior Championship.

I estimate he was at least IM strength, based on such a prestigious tournament win.

Dec-31-19  Olavi: His result in the 1975 US championship is strong, even if somewhat isolated.

Premium Chessgames Member
  vonKrolock: <"The Beauty of Bristol"> This online contribution by 'Zeitnot17', from gives a valid link to this great article by Milan Vukcevich

(Thanks to <MissScarlett>, that posted the link in Francis Healey page) Good reading, with very interesting materials and informations on Bristol's (!?) father.

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