For the football player of the same name, see Larry Evans (American football).
|Full name||Larry Melvyn Evans|
|Born||March 22, 1932
New York, New York
|Died||November 15, 2010
Larry Melvyn Evans (March 22, 1932 – November 15, 2010) was an American chess grandmaster, author, and journalist. He won or shared the U.S. Chess Championship five times and the U.S. Open Chess Championship four times. He wrote a long-running syndicated chess column and wrote or co-wrote more than 20 books on chess.
Chess career 
Early years 
Evans was born in Manhattan on March 22, 1932, and learned much about the game by playing for ten cents an hour on 42nd Street in New York City, quickly becoming a rising star. At age 14, he tied for fourth-fifth place in the Marshall Chess Club championship. The next year he won it outright, becoming the youngest Marshall champion at that time. He also finished equal second in the U.S. Junior Championship, which led to an article in the September 1947 issue of Chess Review. At 16, he played in the 1948 U.S. Chess Championship, his first, tying for eighth place at 11½–7½. Evans tied with Arthur Bisguier for first place in the U.S. Junior Chess Championship of 1949. By age 18, he had won a New York State championship as well as a gold medal in the Dubrovnik 1950 Chess Olympiad. In the latter, his 90% score (eight wins and two draws) on sixth board tied with Rabar of Yugoslavia for the best result of the entire Olympiad.
U.S. champion 
In 1951, he first won the U.S. Championship, ahead of Samuel Reshevsky, who had tied for third-fourth in the 1948 World Championship match-tournament. Evans won his second championship the following year by winning a title match against Herman Steiner. He won the national championship thrice more – in 1961–62, 1967–68 and 1980, the last in a tie with Walter Browne and Larry Christiansen.
Evans performed well in many U.S. events during the 1960s and 1970s, but his trips abroad to international tournaments were infrequent and less successful. He won the U.S. Open Chess Championship in 1951, 1952, 1954 (he tied with Arturo Pomar but won the title on the tie-break) and tied with Walter Browne in 1971. He also won the first Lone Pine tournament in 1971.
Olympiad successes 
He represented the U.S. in eight Chess Olympiads over a period of twenty-six years, winning gold (1950), silver (1958), and bronze (1976) medals for his play, and participating in team gold (1976) and silver (1966) medals.
Best international results 
His best results on foreign soil included two wins at the Canadian Open Chess Championship, 1956 in Montreal, and 1966 in Kingston, Ontario. He tied for first-second in the 1975 Portimão, Portugal International and for second-third with World Champion Tigran Petrosian, behind Jan Hein Donner, in Venice, 1967. However, his first, and what ultimately proved to be his only, chance in the World Chess Championship cycle ended with a disappointing 14th place (10/23) in the 1964 Amsterdam Interzonal.
Working with Bobby Fischer 
He never entered the world championship cycle again, and concentrated his efforts on assisting his fellow American Bobby Fischer in his quest for the world title. He was Fischer's second for the Candidates matches leading up to the World Chess Championship 1972 against Boris Spassky, though not for the championship match itself, after a disagreement with Fischer.
Chess journalism 
Evans had always been interested in writing as well as playing. By the age of eighteen, he had already published David Bronstein's Best Games of Chess, 1944–1949 and the Vienna International Tournament, 1922. His book New Ideas in Chess was published in 1958, and was later reprinted. He wrote or co-wrote more than 20 books on chess.
He wrote the tenth edition of the important openings treatise Modern Chess Openings (1965), co-authored with editor Walter Korn. He also made a significant contribution to Fischer's My 60 Memorable Games (1969), writing the introductions to each of the games and urging the future World Champion to publish when he had initially been reluctant to do so. Some of Evans's other books are Modern Chess Brilliancies (1970), What's The Best Move (1973), and Test Your Chess I.Q. (2001).
Evans began his career in chess journalism during the 1960s, helping to found the American Chess Quarterly, which ran from 1961–65. He was an editor of Chess Digest during the 1960s and 1970s. For over thirty years, until 2006, he wrote a question-and-answer column for Chess Life, the official publication of the United States Chess Federation (USCF), and has also written for Chess Life Online. His weekly chess column, Evans on Chess, has appeared in more than fifty separate newspapers throughout the United States. He also wrote a column for the World Chess Network.
Evans also commentated on some of the most important matches for Time magazine and ABC's Wide World of Sports, including the 1972 Fischer versus Spassky match, the 1993 PCA world title battle between Garry Kasparov and Nigel Short and the Braingames world chess championship match between Vladimir Kramnik and Garry Kasparov in 2000.
Evans also contributed a large amount of tutorial and other content to the Chessmaster computer game series, most notably an endgame quiz and annotations of classic chess games. His contributions to chess writing and journalism earned him many awards, including the USCF's Chess Journalist of the Year award in 2000. He was inducted into the U.S. Chess Hall of Fame in 1994.
Criticism of writings 
Chess historian Edward Winter criticized Evans's work, asserting that it was sloppy, dishonest, and riddled with factual inaccuracies. International Master John L. Watson has noted that Evans has "huge bias", "long histories of ignoring and distorting evidence", and "absurd arguments". In 2000, Grandmaster Yasser Seirawan published on his Inside Chess website a strongly-worded open letter ‘Enough is Enough’ which called on the FIDE President to resign. In a follow-up article (also on-line at Inside Chess) Seirawan reviewed the reaction, including that of the "long time rabid critic of FIDE, GM Evans". After pointing out how Evans had misrepresented his open letter, Seirawan concluded: "Experienced Evans-watchers know that it is the kind of untruth and distortion that is endemic in him." Larry Parr, a friend of Evans, has denounced these assertions.
Selected games 
|This section uses algebraic notation to describe chess moves.|
Daniel Yanofsky–Larry Evans, U.S. Open 1947, Alekhine defence B05
1. e4 Nf6 2. e5 Nd5 3. d4 d6 4. Nf3 Bg4 5. h3 Bxf3 6. Qxf3 dxe5 7. dxe5 e6 8. a3 Nc6 9. Bb5 Qd7 10. c4 Nde7 11. 0-0 Qd4 12. Bg5 a6 13. Bxe7 axb5 14. Bxf8 Rxf8 15. cxb5 Nxe5 16. Qe2 0-0-0 17. Nc3 Ng6 18. Rad1 Qe5 19. Qc2 Rxd1 20. Rxd1 Rd8 21. Rc1 Nf4 22. Kh1 Qh5 24. Kh2 Rd3 25. f3 (see diagram) 25...Rxf3! 26. Rd1 Nxh3! 27. gxf3 Nf2+ 28. Kg3 Qh3+ 29. Kf4 Qh2+ 30. Ke3 0–1 See the game online
In his book Modern Chess Brilliances, Evans listed four of his own wins:
- Evans vs. Berger, 1964
- Evans vs. Blackstone, 1965
- Evans vs. Zuckerman, 1967, U.S. Championship
- Koehler vs. Evans, 1968, U.S. National Open
- William Lombardy and David Daniels, U.S. Championship Chess, David McKay, 1975, pp. 33–36. ISBN 0-679-13042-X.
- Árpád Főldeák, Chess Olympiads 1927–1968, Dover Publications, 1979, pp. 181, 183. ISBN 0-486-23733-8.
- William Lombardy and David Daniels, U.S. Championship Chess, David McKay, 1975, pp. 37–39. ISBN 0-679-13042-X.
- William Lombardy and David Daniels, U.S. Championship Chess, David McKay, 1975, p. 40. ISBN 0-679-13042-X.
- Strawberry Open
- William Lombardy and David Daniels, U.S. Championship Chess, David McKay, 1975, pp. 54–56, 69–71. ISBN 0-679-13042-X.
- Chess Informant, Volume 30, Šahovski Informator, 1981, p. 290.
- Larry Christiansen, 1980 U.S. Championship, Chess Enterprises, Inc., 1980, pp. 6, 108. ISBN 0-931462-09-6.
- John Grefe and Dennis Waterman, The Best of Lone Pine: The Louis D. Statham Chess Tournaments 1971–1980, R.H.M. Press, 1981, pp. 38, 42. ISBN 0-89058-049-9 ISBN 4-87187-816-3.
- Árpád Főldeák, Chess Olympiads 1927–1968, Dover Publications, 1979, pp. 181–83, 198–202, 264–69, 311–15, 358–64, 383–89. ISBN 0-486-23733-8.
- R.D. Keene and D.N.L. Levy, Siegen Chess Olympiad, CHESS Ltd., 1970, p. 214.
- R.D. Keene and D.N.L. Levy, Haifa Chess Olympiad 1976, The Chess Player, 1977, pp. 63–78. ISBN 0-906042-02-X, ISBN 978-0-906042-02-1
- Chess Informant, Šahovski Informator, Volume 20, 1976, p. 263.
- Chess Informant, Šahovski Informator, Volume 4, 1968, p. 282.
- B.M. Kazic, International Championship Chess: A Complete Record of FIDE Events, 1974, pp. 167–68. ISBN 0-273-07078-9.
- Larry Evans, This Crazy World of Chess, Cardoza Publishing, 2007, back cover. ISBN 1-58042-218-7.
- Larry Evans, This Crazy World of Chess, Cardoza Publishing, 2007, pp. 20, 29. ISBN 1-58042-218-7.
- Edward Winter, "The Facts About Larry Evans" (2001). Retrieved on 2009-01-18.
- John Watson, Kingpin, Spring 199,pgs. 33-38.
- Larry Parr, Not Quicker Than the Mind's Eye ChessCity.com.
- USCF: Eulogy
- Chessbase: Eulogy
- McLain, Dylan Loeb (November 17, 2010), "Larry Evans, Chess Champ, Dies at 78", The New York Times
Selected books 
- What's the Best Move? (1995). ISBN 0-671-51159-9.
- The 10 Most Common Chess Mistakes (1998). ISBN 1-58042-009-5.
- How Good Is Your Chess? (2004). ISBN 1-58042-126-1.
- New Ideas in Chess (1958). Pitman. ISBN 0-486-28305-4 (1984 Dover edition). Revised edition in 2011, Cardoza Publishing, ISBN 978-1-58042-274-1.
- Modern Chess Brilliancies (1970). Fireside Simon and Schuster. ISBN 0-671-22420-4.
- Modern Chess Openings (1965). 10th edition, revised by Larry Evans, edited by Walter Korn. Pitman Publishing.
- Evans on Chess (1974). Cornerstone Library.
- This Crazy World of Chess (2007). Cardoza Publishing. ISBN 1-58042-218-7.
- Larry Evans player profile and games at Chessgames.com
- Larry Evans download 419 of his games in pgn format.
- Statistics at ChessWorld.net
- The Facts About Larry Evans Critical article by Edward Winter
- Not Quicker Than the Mind's Eye Response to above article by Larry Parr
- Grandmaster Larry Evans On Bobby Fischer, Chessville, July 30, 2004
- Interview with GM Larry Evans
- The United States Chess Federation eulogy
|United States Chess Champion
|United States Chess Champion
|United States Chess Champion
|United States Chess Champion
1980 (with Walter Browne and Larry Christiansen)
Walter Browne and Yasser Seirawan