Sunday, 30 November 2008


Svetozar Gligoric was born on February 2, 1923 in Belgrade(in the old Yugoslav what is now Serbia). In 1938 he won the championship of the Belgrade Chess Club, one of the strongest clubs in Yugoslavia.
World War II put a stop to his rise in the chess world. In 1947 he won his first major international event at Warsaw, ahead of future World Champion Vasily Smyslov.
Gligoric became a Grandmaster in 1951.
He was Yugoslav champion 12 times 1947 (joint), 1948 (joint), 1949, 1950, 1956, 1957, 1958 (joint), 1959, 1960, 1962, 1965 and 1971.

He represented his country (Yugoslavia) with great success in 15 Chess Olympiads from 1950 to 1982 (13 times on first board), playing 223 games (+88 =109 -26).
In the first post-war Olympiad, on home soil at Dubrovnik 1950, Gligoric played on first board and led Yugoslavia to a historic result, the team gold medal. The Yugoslav team was usually second or third in the world during the 1950s.

His list of first-place finishes in international chess competitions is one of the longest and includes such events as Mar del Plata 1950, Stockholm 1954, Belgrade 1964, Manila 1968, Lone Pine 1972 and 1979, etc. He was a regular competitor in the series of great tournaments held at Hastings at the end of the year, with wins (or ties for first) in 1951–2, 1956–7, 1959–60, 1960–61, and 1962–3.
During the 1950s and 1960s he was one of the top ten players in the world,but his world championship record does not reflect this.
His Zonal wins in 1951, 1960 (joint), 1963, 1966, and 1969 (joint) and finishes at the Interzonals of 1952, 1958, and 1967 high enough to qualify him for the Candidates events the following year.
But he was not as successful in any of the Candidates events, with mixed results in the 1953 and 1959 Candidates Tournaments and a match loss to Mikhail Tal in the 1968 Candidates match series.
Gligorić had good scores against some of the world champions,Mikhail Botvinnik +2-2=5, Vasily Smyslov +5-7=21, Tigran Petrosian +7-10=10, Bobby Fischer +4-4=6.

He made enormous contributions to the theory of the King's Indian Defense, Ruy Lopez and Nimzo-Indian Defense, among others, and particularly with the King's Indian.
As a chess commentator, Gligorić was able to take advantage of his fluency in a number of languages and his training as a journalist, to produce lucid, interesting game annotations. He was a regular columnist for Chess Review and Chess Life magazines for many years, his "Game of the Month" column often amounting to a complete tutorial in the opening used in the feature game as well as a set of comprehensive game annotations. He wrote a number of chess books in several languages and has contributed regularly to the Chess Informant semi-annually (more recently, thrice-yearly) compilation of the world's most important chess games. Add to these accomplishments a successful career as organizer and arbiter of chess tournaments, and the picture that emerges is of one of the greatest chess figures of all time.
I give 4 games from this great player.

Would you have resigned in this position?
Although it was a mistake how many players made smyslov lay down their king in under 20 moves? Smyslov was world champion in 1958

How many club players would have agreed a draw in this position?

If 33………….Qxe8 34Rxe8+ Kf7 35 Rb8 Blacks Bishop and Knight are both attacked.

This game was by many considered to be Gligoric best game. It is from the 1970 "Tournament of Peace" held in Zagreb. Gligoric came second with Petrosian behind Fischer.


Rolling Pawns said...

Many years ago I heard his name as often as names of the Soviet GMs. Amazing attack in the game with Petrosian - beginning with the knight sacrifice and so on... He made King's Indian look like a deadly weapon.

CHESSX said...

It's a shame he never could repeat his form at world championship level.

chessyman said...

Hello friend you have a very nice blog here…well done…check our too:
I am sure you gonna love it.I humbly request you place a link of our blog in your blogroll.Your blog is already in our blogroll.Now why you should link to us?Just go through our blog you will know coz we provide quality content & have a good reader base.You may also like take a look at this post :
I really look forward to have a good relationship with you.Have a good day & keep up the good work.You can reach me at
Waiting for a prompt reply from your side.