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Thursday, October 7, 2010

Latvian GM and 3-time World Senior Chess Champion Janis Klovans is no more

Chess News and Chess Trivia Blog (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2010

Janis Klovans

Hello Everyone,

“Chess has long become the main meaning of my life. Although friends ask, “aren’t you bored of moving the pieces around after so long, when will you finally be able to do it?” Chess for me isn’t work at all, but complete relaxation. Moreover, it helps to keep your mental faculties active. I also work a lot with students. It’s encouraging that the young take a lively interest in chess as it means that it’ll continue to develop in Latvia. Sometimes parents bring in a child for “general development”. But in order to become a real professional you need to forget about everything else in the world.”

This is what Grandmaster Janis Klovans once said in an interview. Klovans is no more. He passed away on Tuesday.

Nicknamed 'Iron John', this Latvian grandmaster also served in the Soviet Army. He was a contemporary of Mikhail Tal and earned the World Senior Champion three times. Janis had turned 75 in April this year.

He won the Latvian Championship nine times (in 1954, 1962, 1967, 1968, 1970, 1971, 1975, 1979 and 1986). Klovans played in two Olympiads; at his first (Manila 1992) he drew twice at second reserve board. In 2000 in Istanbul he scored +5 -4 =4.

You can find a very touching and well-written obituary and tribute to the grandmaster with some games here at the site.

From Alexandra Kosteniuk's
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