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Friday, January 4, 2013

2013 – Chess Year of 3rd Women's World Chess Champion Elizaveta Bykova

Chess blog for latest chess news and chess trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2012

Hi everyone,

Fide has announced 2013 as the Year of Elizaveta (Elizabeth) Bykova. She was Soviet Women Grandmaster (1976), International Master (1953) and the third Women's World Chess Champion. She was Honored Sport Master, economist and journalist. At the age of 12 Bykova moved to Moscow with her older brother. Two years later she began to participate in chess events. In the period 1938-1952 she won six times the Moscow championship and three times the USSR Women championship. During World War II she gave lectures, organized tournaments and played simultaneous games with wounded soldiers in the hospitals.

The Women's World Championship Match of 1953 was one of the most interesting in the history of women chess contests. Having won the title-match with a score of +7-5=2, Bykova became the third Women World Champion. In 1956 a triple round World Championship match was held in Russia but Bykova came only second and had to concede the title to Olga Rubtsova.

In Moscow 1958, Bykova took her revenge and get back the title. One year later she confirmed it against Kira Zvorykina. In 1962 she lost the final contest to a new rising Georgian star named Nona Gaprindashvili. Bykova took active part in organizing women chess movement in the USSR, she is the author of popular books: "Vera Menchik", "Sorevnovanie na pervenstvo mira sredi zhenschin"(Women World Championships), "Sovetskie shakhmatistki" (Soviet Women Chess Players). Women's World Chess Champion N. Gaprindashvili said that there was no match with Bykova in performing of simple positions and endgames. She was characterized with an exceptional industry, a rare presence of mind and a fantastic persistence.

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