1958 interzonal Chess Tournament Portoroz

1958 interzonal Chess Tournament Portoroz
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Catalog Product Code: B0212IS

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Publication Date: January 22, 2013
Notation Type: DN - Descriptive
Page Count: 80

The 1958 Interzonal Chess Tournament in Portoroz was one of the most important and strongest tournaments in chess history, and is still regularly discussed in chess circles today. This is the tournament where the 15-year-old Bobby Fischer earned the grandmaster title and first became a contender for the World Chess Championship. It is also the tournament where Mikhail Tal finally got his first chance to compete in a grandmaster tournament outside of the Soviet Union, and started one of the longest non-losing streaks in chess history on his march to the World Chess Championship.

It is also one of the turning points in chess history. All of the strongest players in the world competed, with the sole exceptions of World Chess Champion Botvinnik, recent World Champion Vasily Smyslov and top contender Paul Keres. It also represented a changing of the guard. In 1956, the ten strongest players in the world had assembled for the World Championship Candidates Tournament in Amsterdam. The tournament had been won by Smyslov with Keres second. Most of the remaining 8 players qualified for this successor tournament. Exceptions were Boris Spassky, Efim Geller and Herman Pilnick.

This time around, only one of the five who qualified for the Candidates Tournament last time made it back in this time. Their places were taken by 15-year-old Bobby Fischer, 20-year-old Mikhail Tal and 23-year-old Fridrik Olafsson, plus Pal Benko and Gligoric.

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