Sunday, April 14, 2013

Robert Byrne, 1928-2013

Obituary in the New York Times.

Byrne, for many years the Times's chess columnist was a former U.S. Champion; in the 1970s, he was one of the top players in the world (his third place in the 1973 Leningrad Interzonal was probably the best American performance of the seventies outside of Fischer).

To do this after age forty was quite an accomplishment.  Dmitry Gurevich once told me that Byrne took his academic training and applied it to chess.  He was versatile: not many players were equally at home in the Najdorf Sicilian (6.Be3!) and the Winawer French.

Many Chicago players met Byrne at the 1994 U.S. Open: he was modest and personable.

No comments: