The Book of the International Chess Tournament held at the Manhattan Chess Club New York 1948-49
The Book of the International Chess Tournament held at the Manhattan Chess Club New York 1948-49
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The Book of the International Chess Tournament held at the Manhattan Chess Club New York 1948-49

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Author: Kmoch, Johann "Hans" Joseph (1894-1973)

Year: 1950

Publisher: Albert S Pinkus

Place: New York

Description:

vi+130 pages with diagrams, tables, photographs and index. Octavo (8 3/4" x 5 3/4") bound in original publisher's red cloth with gilt lettering to spine. (Betts: 189) First edition.

In the winter of 1948, when it came to the attention of the Manhattan Chess Club that four top chess masters would be spending December in New York, a tournament was put together on short notice. The four masters in question were former world champion Max Euwe, American chess master Reuben Fine, challenger of the world crown Miguel Najdorf, and Swedish champion Gideon Ståhlberg. Manhattan Chess Club vice-president Sidney F. Kenton raised $5800 in prize money to lure the players, as well as organizing the event. Ståhlberg was not staying in New York long enough to participate, so he declined. His invitation went next to Samuel Reshevsky, who also declined. Argentinian chess master Herman Pilnik found out about the tournament from Najdorf and offered to fill the empty seat if he were extended an invitation. It was granted and the remaining seats went to American players: Arthur Bisguier, Arnold Denker, Israel Horowitz, Isaac Kashdan, George Kramer, and Herman Steiner. Each player received $250 for attending. The tournament was played from December 23rd, 1948 to January 2nd, 1949, allowing only two rest days, neither of which were holidays. The time control for the event was 40 moves in two hours followed by 20 moves every hour afterwards. Fine won first prize of $1000 for his amazing 8/9 finish. He overcame the tournament leader Najdorf in their round seven game by defeating him, thus leaving Najdorf with the eventual second place prize of $750. Pilnik and Euwe split the combined third and fourth place prize of $750. Although he had declined to participate in the world championship tournament earlier in the year, and would retire from chess in a few more years, Fine displayed in this tournament that he was still one of the world's very best players, and one the best talents America had ever produced.

Condition:

Corners bumped, spine ends moderately rubbed, small stain to back cover else a very good copy.