Student Olympiad performances
As a young man, he was a high achiever, principally as part of the USSR's highly successful Student Olympiad team of 1954-56. The team won the silver medal at the first ever Student Olympiad in Oslo 1954 and then took gold medals at Lyons 1955 and at Uppsala 1956. His best performance probably occurred at Lyons, as the strength of the competition was far greater than at Oslo. Playing below world-class grandmasters Mark Taimanov and Boris Spassky, but above Alexey Suetin, his endeavors also earned him an individual gold medal for best score on board three. In all, he accumulated three gold and one silver medal, for a total score of 16/19.
Making a limited number of international tournament appearances, he was successful at Ulan Bator (1965) and Zinnowitz (1966). The latter was probably his finest moment, scoring +8, =6, -1, to take first place among reasonably strong opposition, including Victor Ciocaltea and Wolfgang Uhlmann.
Aside from Zinnowitz, Hartston notes that Antoshin's over-the-board results were never outstanding. His other results were nevertheless respectable; 2nd at Kienbaum (Berlin) 1959 (Uhlmann won), 5th at Moscow 1960 (ahead of Polugaevsky, Hort and Uhlmann), 4th at Sochi 1963, 4th at Moscow 1963 (ahead of Keres, Liberzon, Szabó and Hort), 6th= at Sochi 1964, 2nd at Venice 1966 (Ivkov won) and 4th at Havana 1968 (The Capablanca Memorial). He regularly played at Sochi, but finished lower on other occasions.
A major reason for his limited progress as a player was his continued amateur status. He became a tournament organiser and trainer to the USSR Olympiad team, maintained a second career as a technical designer, and according to Cafferty & Taimanov, was also supposed to have strong links with the KGB. As a further distraction, he chose to play correspondence chess throughout the 1950s, although this notably culminated in him winning the USSR Correspondence Championship in 1960.
|This section uses algebraic notation to describe chess moves.|
In the Antoshin Variation, Black chooses to exchange central pawns and head for simple, rapid development of the kingside. After ... 0-0 and ... Re8, Black's cramped dark-square bishop is often reactivated by playing it to g7 via f8. Play commences,
5.Nc3 Be7 (diag.)
and White usually chooses to develop one of his bishops, for example:
with a small advantage to White (Emms) in Hyldkrog-Jensen, corr., 1984. The opening remains fully playable however, with modern-day proponents including Lev Aronian, Étienne Bacrot and Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu.
The Hort-Antoshin Variation was first discovered by Vlastimil Hort in 1960, when he was just sixteen; it was then further developed by Antoshin and consequently carries the names of both players. Black's idea is to omit the 'normal' e6 move and prepare a central break with e5 instead. The line may also be used with 'colours reversed' as a variant of Bird's Opening, where of course White is a move up. Play starts,
4.c4 (Burgess gives the more modern alternative 4.Nc3 c6 5.e4 fxe4 6.Nxe4 Nxe4 7.Bxe4 Bf5 8.Qf3 Bxe4 9.Qxe4 Qa5+ 10.c3 as favouring White in Khenkin-Vasiukov, Voskresensk 1990)
4. ... c6
5.Nc3 Qc7 (diag.)
whereupon, one possible continuation is the direct:
which ended in an early draw in Minev-Hort, Moscow 1960.
- Yuri Gusev-Vladimir Antoshin, Moscow Championship, 1952, 0-1 Black hits his opponent with successive pawn and exchange sacrifices, in order to open lines towards the enemy king.
- Kazić, Bozidar M. (1974). International Championship Chess. Batsford. pp. 135–149. ISBN 0-7134-2795-7.
- Olimpbase record for Vladimir Antoshin
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