Chess in 1965

 by Bill Wall


In 1965, Moscow State University was the first university to introduce a course on chess.  Over 2,000 students attended.


In 1965, Henrique Mecking won the Brazilian chess championship at age 13.


In 1965, Botvinnik was seeded in the 1965 Candidates tournament, but declined to participate.  Resentful that FIDE no longer allowed a return match (the ‘anti-Botvinnik’ law), Botvinnik made no attempt to enter the next world championship cycle and said it was too tiring.


In 1965 the Soviets designed a chess program developed at the Institute for Theoretical and Experimental Physics (ITEP) in Moscow. ITEP's programming team was led by Georgi Adelson-Velskiy.


In January, 1965, Paul Keres won at Hastings.


On January 11, 1965, three Ohio State University students claimed the world endurance record for chess players.  Karl Stechle, Carl Jackman, and John Phythian stayed at the chess board for 58 straight hours.  (source: Dover, Ohio Daily Reporter, Jan 11, 1965)


On February 11, 1965, Vitaly Chekhover (1908-1965) died in Leningrad at the age of 56.  He won the Leningrad championship in 1937 and 1949.  He was awarded the IM title in 1950 and the IM in Composition title in 1961.  He was a famous endgame composer.  He was also a music composer, musician, and a professional pianist from Leningrad.


On February 12, 1965, Mark L. Condie was born in Scotland.  He was awarded the IM title in 1984.


On February 13, 1965, Samuel Reshevsky won the first National Open in Las Vegas.


On February 27, 1965, Alexander Goldin was born in Russia.  He was awarded the GM title in 1989.


On March 6, 1965, Sonja Graf-Stevenson (1908-1965) died of a liver ailment in New York at the age of 56.  She was awarded the WIM title in 1950.  She was US Women's champion in 1964. She was born in Germany.  In 1939, she was barred from taking part at the Chess Olympiad in Buenos Aires by the Nazis.  She came to the United States in 1945 from Argentina.  (source: Brandon, Manitoba Sun, Mar 9, 1965)


On March 16, 1965, Utut Adianto was born in Jakarta, Indonesia.  In 1982, he won the the Indonesian national championship.  He was awarded the IM title in 1985 and the GM title in 1986.


On April 16, 1965, Joerg Hickl was born in Germany.  He was awarded the  IM title in 1986 and the GM title in 1988.


On June 1, 1965, Nigel Short was born in Leigh in Lancashire, England.  He was awarded the IM title in 1979 and the GM title in 1984.  He was British champion in 1984, 1987, and 1998.  He was English champion in 1991.  He was Commonwealth champion in 2006 and 2008.


On July 11, 1965, Vladimir Epishin was born in Leningrad. In 1989, he won the US Open.  He was awarded the GM title in 1990.


In July, 1965, Greenland had its first formal chess tournament.


On July 24, 1965, Alexey Root (née Rudolph) was born in the USA.  In 1989, she won the US Women’s Chess Championship.  She is a Woman International Master.


On July 31, 1965, Elliott Forry Laucks (1898-1965) died of a heart attack in San Juan, Puerto Rico during the US Open at the age of 67.  He was founder of Log Cabin Chess Club.


In August 1965, Bobby Fischer participated in the 4th Capablanca Memorial in Cuba by playing through a teletype machine at the Marshall Chess Club in New York. He tied for 2nd-4th with 12 wins, 6 draws, and 3 losses. The United States did not have diplomatic relations with Cuba, and the State Department would not authorize him to travel to Havana. Fischer thus had to play by teletype and the Cuban government paid for the services, over $10,000. Fischer's USCF rating was 2706.  Fischer was given a $3,000 appearance fee to play in the event.


On August 16, 1965, Dejan Mozetic was born in Yugoslavia.  He was awarded the IM title in 1992.


On September 29, 1965, an episode (Season 1, Episode 3) called “Island in the Sky” appeared on Lost in Space (TV series from 1965 to 1968).  Jonathan Harris (Dr. Zachary Smith) plays chess with the robot.  Guy Williams (Professor Robinson) was once a ranked chess player.


On October 28, 1965, Susan Kathryn Arkell Lalic (nee Walker) was born in Englnad.  She was awarded the WGM title in 1985 and the IM title in 1996.  She won the British Women’s championship in 1986, 1990, 1991, 1992, and 1998.


On November 5, 1965, Fyodar Dus-Chotimirsky (1879-1965) died in Moscow at the age of 86.  He was Uzbekistani champion in 1931. He was awarded the IM title in 1950.


On November 28, 1965, Kiril Georgiev was born in Petrich, Bulgaria.  He was World Junior Champion in 1983.  He was awarded the IM title in 1983 and the GM title in 1985. He won the Bulgarian championship in 1984, 1986, 1989, 2014 and 2015.


On November 28, 1965, Pal Benko won the first American Open, held in Santa Monica.


On November 28, 1965, Rustem Dautov was born in Ufa, Russia.  He was awarded the GM title in 1991.


In December 1965, Walter Browne of Erasmus High School won the Senior High School Individual Championship of the Interscholastic League of New York, scoring 5.5-0.5. 


On December 3, 1965, Miguel Illescas-Cordoba was born in Spain.  He was awarded the GM title in 1988.


In December 1965, Bobby Fischer won the U.S. Chess Championship with 8 wins, 1 draw, and 2 losses. His 1st place prize was $2,000. Fischer's USCF rating after the event was 2708. He also qualified for the 1967 Interzonal in Sousse, Tunisia.