In 1946, freshman at the Law School of the University of Amsterdam, Hein Donner went to Groningen at the Staunton Memorial. Student Donner was rarely seen in university auditoriums: captivated by chess, he sat in the chess cafes of Amsterdam from morning till night. And even played in January in Wijk aan Zee in this tournament – the third group C, gaining fifty percent of the points.
Donner knew that not only western, but also the strongest Soviet grandmasters arrived in Groningen, demonstrating, as everyone said, new, ultra-modern chess. And the most powerful of them is Mikhail Botvinnik.
“I don’t remember how I got to the hall where the tournament was played,” Donner recalled thirty years later, “only a huge space remained in the memory, in the center of which they were sitting. THEY ARE! Continue reading