Viktor Korchnoi, chess grandmaster, 2011 in Porto Carras (Photo: Wikipedia by Andreas Kontokanis, Greece)

This is a tribute to Viktor Lvovich Korchnoi, the Inimitable and Infatiguable, the 'Lion from Leningrad'. Master of aggressive counter-attacking, in fact, the greatest counter-attacker in chess, and a brilliant defense artist, expert of rook endings, full of fantasy, with a unique willingness to enter double-edged, unbalanced positions.

The iron man of chess who played and beat grandmasters of five generations, from Levenfisch (born 1889) and Lilienthal to Carlsen and Caruana (born 1992), beating a non-surpassed nine undisputed World Champions (including all from Botvinnik to Kasparov).

With a persistant search for new ideas and truth at the chess board, Korchnoi is winner of more than 220 tournaments, matches and team events of grandmaster strength in his adult career.

His fresh style and unrivalled combative longevity should be an inspiration to all of us. A fearless competitor and a non-conformist, always pushing himself to stay in front of theory. GM Viktor Korchnoi will be remembered for a life dedicated to chess.


6. Jun, 2016

The man who has spent his whole life in the game

A fighter and a survivor - Obituaries and Reminiscences.

1. Aug, 2016

More than 220 wins in tournament, match and team career events for Viktor Korchnoi (always strictly chess contests of grandmaster strength)

Chronological summary of all First Prizes won in adult GM competitions (not counting club level, exhibitions, etc., without junior or senior events).

31. Dec, 2016

Compendium: International tournament series

A wrap-up of all past and present major recurring individual international chess tournament *serials* in classical chess (closed invitational round robin all-play-all and open swiss system).

More than eighty tournaments (past and present events) are presented in detail, among them the full story on the former supertournament series of Las Palmas and Palma de Mallorca. Exclusive in the Web: Banja Luka

1. Jan, 2017

Player biographies, a selection

Featuring uncrowned chess giants, and players who achieved a special cult character, who have become national heroes and / or worked with Viktor Korchnoi as a second (assistant). Sometimes a strong current player is portrayed, too.

4. Feb, 2017

The legendary film icon Arthur Cohn is 90 years young ...

La diagonale du fou, produced by Arthur Cohn won the Academy Award Best Foreign Language Film in 1985: The first Oscar for Switzerland :)

From Russia with Love - James Bond 007: A famous film scene!

30. Jun, 2018

Exclusive in the Web: Open Superseries, an overview

Register of about twenty recurring international Open Supertournament series (named "Superopen" in analogy to the closed "Supertournament") in classical chess, from past and present.

A Chess Superopen series is big and diverse (strength and largeness of the top participating grandmasters and the status of the tournament in continuation), mixed in gender and ages, with players representing not only various countries, but also different continents.

30. Jun, 2019

Closed elite series, an overview

A selection of strong international invitation chess tournament *series*. By definition, the overview is focussed on series.

Note: Three countries, Spain, The Netherlands, and former Yugoslavia organised the most invitation tournament *series* in the modern era of chess since WWII. Tournament series held from there, are summarized under the corresponding chessdiagonals web sites.

Great Britain (international tournament tradition since 1851) and Belgium (the chess centre of the world in the mid- and late 1980s) are presented in full history in their section respectively.

11. Nov, 2019

Benchmarks & Record

TRIVIA, especially the Youngest and the Oldest.

20. May, 2020

On a zero-sum ranking system and Elo rating inflation

In historical comparisons, ranking matters, not nominal rating, referring to top-level. A provocative essay and empirical research.

Physical chess is back!

29. Jul, 2020

International Chess Festival of Biel / Bienne

The Biel International Festival took place in a reduced form in July 2020, it was the First Major Chess Tournament Post-Corona, since March 2020, when the coronavirus started to cause global lockdowns.

It was won by Radoslaw Wojtasczek, a world elite player from Poland, ahead of Harikrishna (India), routinier Adams (England), young Vincent Keymer (Germany), and Naiditsch (Azerbaijan), in a combined "GM Triathlon" format of Classical, Rapid and Blitz chess, eight participants, three Elo 2700+ players.

What a Tiger, and a role model for us all in these days! Lennick Rempe in the Amateur tournament section at Biel International Chess Festival 2020 (Photos: Organiser via Flickr)

Lennik Rempe, an amateur kid in a chess affiliated family

Lennik Rempe, 9 years, in play during the Biel / Bienne International Chess Festival in July 2020 at the (sic!) Special Corona Amateur Tournament C-HTO, restricted to 150 players, most came from the hosting nation Switzerland and the neighbour countries Germany, Austria, France or Italy, without physical spectators, using extra-large boards, nine round swiss system, a side event of the GM Triathlon (classical + rapid + blitz combined format, see above).

Extra-large boards at Biel International Chess Festival 2020

Get vaccinated - Wear a mask - Save lives

Gukesh D. at Biel MTO 2021. Photo: Organiser

Biel had also been held in 2021, despite the continuation of COVID-19.

Legendary Gata Kamsky (born 1974, a Soviet origin US top grandmaster) won the combined classical-rapid-blitz Triathlon tournament in style. Second place went to Kirill Alekseenko from Russia, Indian youngster prodigy Nihal Sarin (born 2004) finished third. Eight players, including Boris Gelfand, Israel, Vincent Keymer, Germany, and Alan Pichot, Argentina.

In 1993, Gata Kamsky reached third place at the last FIDE Interzonal (swiss system), held in Biel as a 19-year-young. Thanks to this he qualified for the Candidates Tournament 1994/95, which he won and he was thus allowed to compete against Anatoly Karpov for the FIDE World Championship title in 1996. Although he then lost, the IZT in Biel 1993 was the beginning of his world vice champion title. Now, 28 years later, Kamsky has come full circle by winning the Biel Chess Festival 2021!

The Biel Master Tournament Open (MTO) was won by Emirati grandmaster Salem Saleh, ahead of Karthikeyan Murali from India, who tied on points. Hungarian Tamás Bánusz placed third.

In the Open field also renowned Pavel Eljanov, Ukraine, and many strong Indian players, among them Sethuraman S.P., Praggnanandhaa R., and Dommaraju Gukesh (born 2006), better known as Gukesh D., an enthusiastic and highly promising junior.

Masks Save Lives

Alexei Shirov walking at Salamanca Chess Festival, Masters (rapid) 2021. Photo: Flickr

Players analyzing after their game. Photo: Lennart Ootes, Sunway Sitges, December 2020

Cigarettes in the pocket... that was yesterday! Grandmaster Larry Christiansen, famous for his attacking style, shows how it goes, if necessary.

US Senior Championship 2021. Photo: Twitter, Saint Louis Chess Club