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TOURNAMENT STANDINGS
Stockholm Interzonal Tournament

Alexander Kotov16.5/20(+13 -0 =7)[games]
Mark Taimanov13.5/20(+7 -0 =13)[games]
Tigran V Petrosian13.5/20(+7 -0 =13)[games]
Efim Geller13/20(+8 -2 =10)[games]
Yuri L Averbakh12.5/20(+6 -1 =13)[games]
Gideon Stahlberg12.5/20(+8 -3 =9)[games]
Laszlo Szabo12.5/20(+7 -2 =11)[games]
Svetozar Gligoric12.5/20(+9 -4 =7)[games]
Wolfgang Unzicker11.5/20(+7 -4 =9)[games]
Erich Eliskases10.5/20(+5 -4 =11)[games]
Herman Pilnik10/20(+4 -4 =12)[games]
Ludek Pachman10/20(+3 -3 =14)[games]
Herman Steiner10/20(+6 -6 =8)[games]
Aleksandar Matanovic9/20(+3 -5 =12)[games]
Gedeon Barcza8/20(+5 -9 =6)[games]
Gosta Stoltz7.5/20(+4 -9 =7)[games]
Luis Augusto Sanchez7/20(+4 -10 =6)[games]
Robert Graham Wade6/20(+3 -11 =6)[games]
Paul Vaitonis5/20(+2 -12 =6)[games]
Harry Golombek4.5/20(+1 -12 =7)[games]
Lodewijk Prins4.5/20(+2 -13 =5)[games]
*

Chessgames.com Chess Event Description
Stockholm Interzonal (1952)

The event started with the FIDE Congress 8-13 September in Grand Hôtel Saltsjöbaden (about 14 km east of Stockholm proper but a part of the Stockholm county), where Geller, Eliskases and Pilnik were awarded the GM title.

Compared to the first Saltsjöbaden Interzonal (1948), the system of zonal and interzonal tournaments was more firmly established. Qualified from the zonal tournaments were: Gligoric, Matanovic, Unzicker, Prins and Golombek from Bad Pyrmont (1951), Geller, Petrosian, Averbakh, Taimanov and Kotov* from the USSR Championship (1951), Pachman, Szabó, Barcza, Stoltz and Jan Foltys from Marianske Lazne (1951), Larry Melvyn Evans and Max Pavey from the US Championship (1951), the Canadian champion Vaitonis from Vancouver (1951), Sanchez from Caracas (1951), and Eliskases and Julio Bolbochan from Mar del Plata (1951). From Zone 8, Wade from New Zealand had won the British Championship (1952) and was also selected. As reserves, FIDE had picked Ståhlberg and Pilnik, mainly based on Budapest (1952). Foltys, who qualified on Sonneborn-Berger score ahead of Pal Benko, had passed away (in March 1952), and since Benkö was in prison for trying to defect to the West, Ståhlberg got that qualification spot.

The Americans had Samuel Reshevsky (who was already qualified for the Candidates), Evans, Robert Eugene Byrne and Arthur Bisguier still in Europe after the Helsinki olympiad (9-31 August), and hoped to be represented by two of these (of which only Evans was formally qualified). Evans and Byrne had to return home, however. Bisguier was offered a place, but he also had to withdraw only days before the tournament started because of Army service. They were replaced by the 1948 champion Steiner, who had lost the US Championship match to Evans in 1952 (July), and Pilnik got to enter as reserve. Steiner sailed September 3 with the steamship Stavangerfjord and managed to reach the tournament in time. The Russians were better off, with four players qualified for the Candidates (David Bronstein, Isaac Boleslavsky, Paul Keres, Vasily Smyslov). Their delegation to Stockholm also included FIDE Vice President Viacheslav Ragozin, Igor Bondarevsky, Andre Lilienthal, and Salomon Flohr. These served as seconds, journalists, and held simultaneous exhibitions.

The opening ceremony took place on 14 September in Stockholms Stadshus# where the players were welcomed by FIDE President Folke Rogard. Play started in the Blue Hall# the next day. After a drawn (with the white pieces) round 2 game vs Szabó, Bolbochan had a haemorrhage and withdrew from the tournament (and from the first round adjournment vs Geller). Kotov won the 8 first rounds! He had 13 wins, and drew the rest. The Russians drew all games between them and also took the first five spots (Averbakh on Sonneborn-Berger score). The plan had been that the top five finishers would go to the Zurich Candidates (1953), but with FIDE in town it was agreed immediately after the tournament (and formally decided in February 1953) that the top eight could go there. Which they did!

The tournament was a success for the King's Indian (7 White wins, 11 Black wins) and Sicilian (5 White wins, 12 Black wins) defences.

Stockholms Stadshus (1, 15-21) and Grand Hôtel Saltsjöbaden (2-14), Sweden, 15 September - 20 October 1952

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 Pts 1 Kotov * ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 1 1 1 1 ½ ½ 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 16½ =2 Taimanov ½ * ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ ½ 1 1 1 ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 1 13½ =2 Petrosian ½ ½ * ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 1 ½ 1 1 1 ½ 13½ 4 Geller ½ ½ ½ * ½ 1 0 0 1 ½ 1 ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 1 1 1 ½ 13 =5 Averbakh ½ ½ ½ ½ * 0 ½ 1 ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 1 1 ½ 12½ =5 Ståhlberg ½ ½ ½ 0 1 * 0 1 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 1 1 0 1 1 ½ 1 12½ =5 Szabó 0 ½ 0 1 ½ 1 * ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 1 ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 12½ =5 Gligoric 0 ½ ½ 1 0 0 ½ * 0 ½ ½ ½ 1 1 ½ 1 1 1 1 1 1 12½ 9 Unzicker 0 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ 1 * ½ 0 ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 1 1 ½ 1 1 11½ 10 Eliskases 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ * ½ 1 0 ½ 0 ½ 1 ½ 1 1 1 10½ =11 Pilnik 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ * 1 0 ½ ½ ½ 1 0 ½ ½ 1 10 =11 Pachman ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ 0 0 * ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 1 ½ ½ 10 =11 Steiner ½ 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ 0 0 1 1 ½ * ½ 0 0 1 1 ½ 1 1 10 14 Matanovic 0 0 ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ ½ * 0 ½ 1 ½ 1 ½ 1 9 15 Barcza 0 0 0 0 ½ 0 0 ½ ½ 1 ½ 0 1 1 * 1 ½ 0 0 1 ½ 8 16 Stoltz 0 ½ 0 ½ 0 0 0 0 0 ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ 0 * 0 1 1 ½ 1 7½ 17 Sanchez 0 0 ½ 0 ½ 1 ½ 0 0 0 0 ½ 0 0 ½ 1 * ½ 0 1 1 7 18 Wade 0 ½ 0 0 0 0 ½ 0 0 ½ 1 0 0 ½ 1 0 ½ * ½ 0 1 6 19 Vaitonis 0 ½ 0 0 0 0 0 0 ½ 0 ½ 0 ½ 0 1 0 1 ½ * ½ 0 5 =20 Golombek 0 0 0 0 0 ½ ½ 0 0 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ 0 ½ 0 1 ½ * 0 4½ =20 Prins 0 0 ½ ½ ½ 0 0 0 0 0 0 ½ 0 0 ½ 0 0 0 1 1 * 4½

Tournament managers: Fritz Andersson, assisted by Hugo Björk, Jostein Westberg and Rune Strand. First Brilliancy Prize went to Stoltz for Stoltz vs H Steiner, 1952. At the banquet, FIDE awarded the GM title to Taimanov, Petrosian and Averbakh.

Three tournament books: Interzonala Världsschackturneringen Stockholm-Saltsjöbaden 1952, by Gideon Ståhlberg (Sveriges Schackförbund, Örebro 1953. 343 pp.); Mezhzonalny Shakmatny Turnir V Stokgolme 1952, by Alexander Kotov (Fizkultura I Sport, Moscow 1954. 304 pp. (in Russian)); II. meðuzonski turnir Saltsjöbaden 1952, by Braslav Rabar (Šahovska naklada, Zagreb 1953. 72 pp. (in Croatian)). This introduction is mainly based on

1) Ståhlberg's tournament book,
2) Tidskrift för Schack (online at https://schack.se/forbundet/tfs/ark...),
3) Hermann Helms 's column in Brooklyn Daily Eagle,
4) Bill Wall 's note on Benkö in Hungarian prison (https://web.archive.org/web/2016030...),
5) OlimpBase (http://www.olimpbase.org/1952/1952f...), and
6) brief daily reports in the Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter (with round dates).

Original collections: Game Collection: Interzonals 1952: Stockholm by User: capybara and Game Collection: Stockholm Interzonal 1952 by User: Tabanus. *Even if Lev Aronin and Nikolai Georgiyevich Kopilov had better scores than Kotov. #Wikipedia article: Stockholm City Hall. Eight rounds were played in its Blue Hall, see http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikiped....

Previous: Saltsjöbaden Interzonal (1948). Next: Gothenburg Interzonal (1955)

 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 45  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. P Vaitonis vs Geller  0-1441952Stockholm InterzonalE61 King's Indian
2. Prins vs Stahlberg  0-1261952Stockholm InterzonalB54 Sicilian
3. Stoltz vs Kotov 0-1421952Stockholm InterzonalE67 King's Indian, Fianchetto
4. Geller vs Gligoric 0-1381952Stockholm InterzonalE76 King's Indian, Four Pawns Attack
5. R G Wade vs Pachman  0-1371952Stockholm InterzonalB80 Sicilian, Scheveningen
6. P Vaitonis vs Kotov 0-1201952Stockholm InterzonalE67 King's Indian, Fianchetto
7. Averbakh vs Stahlberg 0-1611952Stockholm InterzonalC07 French, Tarrasch
8. Golombek vs Geller  0-1531952Stockholm InterzonalE95 King's Indian, Orthodox, 7...Nbd7, 8.Re1
9. Prins vs Kotov 0-1311952Stockholm InterzonalB17 Caro-Kann, Steinitz Variation
10. A Matanovic vs G Barcza 0-1691952Stockholm InterzonalC05 French, Tarrasch
11. H Steiner vs Gligoric 0-1371952Stockholm InterzonalE80 King's Indian, Samisch Variation
12. Golombek vs Kotov 0-1411952Stockholm InterzonalA15 English
13. R G Wade vs Petrosian 0-1571952Stockholm InterzonalB91 Sicilian, Najdorf, Zagreb (Fianchetto) Variation
14. P Vaitonis vs Stoltz  0-1401952Stockholm InterzonalE18 Queen's Indian, Old Main line, 7.Nc3
15. Prins vs H Steiner  0-1561952Stockholm InterzonalC26 Vienna
16. Unzicker vs Taimanov 0-1301952Stockholm InterzonalB58 Sicilian
17. H Steiner vs Unzicker 0-1401952Stockholm InterzonalE30 Nimzo-Indian, Leningrad
18. Stoltz vs Gligoric  0-1301952Stockholm InterzonalE80 King's Indian, Samisch Variation
19. G Barcza vs P Vaitonis 0-1471952Stockholm InterzonalD61 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox, Rubinstein Attack
20. Prins vs Stoltz  0-1391952Stockholm InterzonalC23 Bishop's Opening
21. Golombek vs H Steiner  0-1431952Stockholm InterzonalD30 Queen's Gambit Declined
22. Stoltz vs Unzicker 0-1491952Stockholm InterzonalA04 Reti Opening
23. P Vaitonis vs Gligoric  0-1381952Stockholm InterzonalE95 King's Indian, Orthodox, 7...Nbd7, 8.Re1
24. L A Sanchez vs Geller 0-1451952Stockholm InterzonalE92 King's Indian
25. A Matanovic vs Taimanov 0-1311952Stockholm InterzonalE40 Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3
 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 45  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
Jun-19-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Kotov's great Interzonal win. He scored 82.5% and won by three points. He must have felt unstoppable... But at the subsequent Zurich Candidates (1953) he scored 50% for mid-table anonymity.
Jun-19-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: 'Mid-table anonymity' sounds like the same affliction which ailed Fischer after he cruised to victory at Stockholm Interzonal (1962).
Mar-15-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: After this result, how many people said, "Kotov will be the next World Champion"? I do not know. I think it would not have been many.
Mar-15-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  Retireborn: <offramp> Hardly anybody, I should think. He was already nearly 40 in 1952; perhaps ten years earlier he might still have been regarded as a possible rival for Botvinnik and Smyslov.

Still, you never know. Boris Gelfand, who shared first place in the 1990 Manila izt, didn't get to play a world title match until 2012 when he was well over 40!

Mar-15-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: I believe <Perfidious> once gave a quick resumé of how well interzonal winners fared in the overall World Championship cycle. God knows where it was posted. I think the general synopsis was that interzonal winners were not likely to go on to become World Champion finalists. But of course there can only be one winner of a Candidates cycle! It's very tough.
Mar-15-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <offramp> If God knows, He ain't tellin'!

Can't say I recall where I maundered on in that vein, either, though my recollection is that IZ winners experienced a mixed bag, come to results--Kotov was far from the only convincing victor at the IZ stage to come a cropper when there were no rabbits to beat.

Mar-15-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  Retireborn: Mecking comes to mind - he even won two interzonals, but was unable to get past Korchnoi and Polugaevsky. Torre and Sax who shared first place in 1982 and 1987 also only made fleeting appearances in the Candidates. No disgrace, of course - as <offramp> says it was very tough!
Mar-15-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Reaching the WC final was like <The Right Stuff>. Extremely hard. I think the 1962 Curacao Candidates may have been the hardest. Bobby got a shock; he'd won the Interzonal by a mile, then lost his first two games in the Caribbean.
Mar-15-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <perfidious > <offramp > Kotov resembled Fischer in that he spoiled his chances at the outset, losing his first three games. The tournament wasn't a washout for him though. He got wins against Smyslov and Reshevsky and also won the first brilliancy prize against Averbakh.
Mar-25-15
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Sorry. It was <Petrosianic: <perfidious> <As to those title aspirants named by <offramp>, fat lot of good their massive plus scores did them:> Well, that's a good question. How have Interzonal winners fraed in the Candidates?

1948 - Bronstein: Tied for First in Candidates, drew world championship match

1952 - Kotov: 8th-9th in Candidates, 50% score

1955 - Bronstein: 3rd - 7th in Candidates, +1 score.

1958 - Tal: Won Candidates, won World Championship. Jackpot!

1962 - Fischer: 4th at Candidates, +1 score.

1964 -
Smyslov: Eliminated in Quarterfinals.
Larsen: Eliminated in Semifinals.
Tal: Eliminated in Finals.
Spassky: Won Candidates, lost world championship match

1967 - Larsen: Eliminated in Semifinals.

1970 - Fischer: Won Candidates, won World Championship. Jackpot!

1973 -
Mecking: Eliminated in Quarterfinals.
Korchnoi: Eliminated in Finals.
Karpov: Won Candidates, became World Champion. Jackpot!

1976 -
Larsen: Eliminated in Quarterfinals.
Mecking: Eliminated in Quarterfinals.

1979 -
Petrosian: Eliminated in Quarterfinals.
Portisch: Eliminated in Semifinals.
Huebner: Eliminated in Finals.
Tal: Eliminated in Quarterfinals.

1982 -
Portisch: Eliminated in Quarterfinals.
Torre: Eliminated in Quarterfinals.
Ribli: Eliminated in Semifinals.
Kasparov: Won Candidates, won world championship. Jackpot!

1985-7 -
Vaganian: 1st-3rd in Candidates Tournament.
Eliminated in Quarterfinals.

Yusupov: 1st-3rd in Candidates Tournament. Eliminated in semifinals.

Timman: Qualified from Candidates Tournament, eliminated in Quarterfinals.

1988-90
Korchnoi: Eliminated in Octifinals
Sax: Eliminated in Octifinals
Salov: Eliminated in Octifinals
Short: Eliminated in Quarterfinals.
Hjartarson: Eliminated in Quarterfinals.
Speelman: Eliminated in Seminfinals.

So, there's a real mixed bag here. A couple of jackpots, and also a lot of quick exits and mediocre candidates tournament results. But out of 34 Interzonal winners, only 4 went all the way.>

Feb-25-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: This is the earliest Interzonal from which there are still some players alive (three of them - Taimanov, Averbakh and Matanovic).
Sep-01-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Taimanov is now dead, but the other two are still alive.
Apr-01-19  ughaibu: <out of 34 Interzonal winners, only 4 went all the way>

This is rather misleading as there were only 14 opportunities to go "all the way".

Apr-15-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  carpovius: The article above says no words about the winner who finished 3 points ahead the board (+13-0=7). Outstanding result!
Apr-15-21
Premium Chessgames Member
  carpovius: 5 first places for soviets))

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