Sunday, April 15, 2012

April 16th

Esteban Puig y Puig (16-04-1878 - 29-01-1940) Spanish player and composer

Esteban Puig y Puig

Esteban Puig y Puig did not compose many problems, but he was a very good player. He founded the first Spanish chess column ("La Noticias") in 1909.  He was the first president of the SEPA (Spanish Problemists Association) and of the Catalan Chess Federation.
He wrote "Apuntes críticos sobre la obra 150 fins de partie de Mr. Henri Rinck, con una disertacion crítica sobre esta clase de composiciones" about Rinck's studies in 1908. In composing he favoured the "Good Companion" style.

Puig Y Puig, Esteban
4th Concurso Nacional Español, 1920
1st Prize

#2 7 + 12

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Antonio Bottacchi (16-04-1900 - 22-12-1969) Italian composer

Antonio Bottacchi, 1922
[Chess History]

Bottacchi also composed twomovers in the "Good Companions" style.
In 2005 Oscar Bonivento published a book about Bottacchi's works: "Realismo e Romanticismo nell'arte problemistica di Antonio Bottacchi, in 432 problemi commentati".

Bottacchi, Antonio
Densmore-Gedenkturnier, 1918
1st Prize

#2 8 + 9

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Vladimir Pachman (16-04-1918 - 08-08-1984) Czech composer and Grandmaster in composition

Vladimir Pachman

Vladimir Pachman is the brother of o.t.b. GM Ludek Pachman and the great-nephew of Bohemian composer Josef Cumpe (1868-1943). Vladimir composed about 1200 problems and studies, most of his problems in 3 or more moves. He was granted the title of International Judge upon the creation of the title in 1956. He edited the problems columns in "Ceskolovensky Sach" and wrote many books and articles. The following ones can be downloaded on the Internet:
The quality of Pachman's works is high; he could include strategic and logical elements in Bohemian problems. His 1st Prize in Olympic tourney, 1948 could have been chosen among his threemovers for its interesting battery play or a typical Bohemian #3 where the tempo key is especially hidden (1.Kb4? e2! 2.Sd3 e1=Q+) but instead here is another typical Bohemian, also selected in the FIDE Album:

Pachman, Vladimír
Шахматы в СССР 1956
3rd Prize

#3 5 + 8

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Pachman, Vladimír
British Chess Federation, 1956
1st Prize

#4 6 + 10

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Pachman, Vladimír
Schweizerische Schachzeitung, 1957
2nd Prize

#6 7 + 13

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An endgame study with sacrifices:

Pachman, Vladimír
Buletin Problemistic, 1978
2nd Prize

+ 7 + 5

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Виктор Андреевич Астахов (16-04-1931) Russian composer (Viktor Andreyevich Astakhov)

Viktor Astakhov
Александр Никитин ]

Viktor Astakhov is a direct mate composer.

Астахов, Виктор А.
Шахматы в СССР 1962

#3 11 + 11

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Yochanan Afek (16-04-1952) Israeli composer and Grandmaster

Nikolay Kralin and Yochanan Afek

Yochanan Afek
[© Hannu Harkola]

Yochanan Afek is International Judge and edits the studies column in The Problemist. He was granted 4 international titles: International Master, International Master of the chess compositions, International Arbiter and International Judge of chess compositions. You may find other information about his chess activities (trainer, arbiter, etc) on his website
49 of his studies are presented here. He is most known for his studies, but he also composed direct mates, helpmates and selfmates. Here are two spectacular studies of his:

Afek, Yochanan
Tidskrift för Schack, 1972 (1627)
2nd Prize

+ 6 + 6

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Afek, Yochanan
Milescu MT, 1982
1st Prize

= 6 + 6

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A witty #5 as a fitting conclusion:

Afek, Yochanan
The Problemist, 1997

#5 5 + 3

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