Israeli Grandmaster Emil Sutovsky vs. Evgeny Postny – How to be a Chess Grandmaster – Video #4


ABOUT GM Evgeny Postny:

Evgeny Postny is a 30 year old Israel Grandmaster who has won the Israeli chess championship in 2001. He has an impressive peak rating of 2674. This game was taken from the same year he won the championship. He was only 19 years old and already had a FIDE of 2432.


The interview:

When did you learn chess and who taught you?

My father taught me when I was 5 years old.

When did you begin playing chess tournaments and how did you do?

I started playing in official tournaments at age 8, and with fine success, because I already had enough knowledge, playing training games with my father and other players since age 5.

When did you begin making legitimate progress in your game and How?

Well, I can’t really spot a specific point, but at the early stage of the career the progress comes by itself, thanks to theoretical knowledge and practical experience.

Can you recall a specific turning point? (a game, event, working with a chess coach, etc..)

There were some games, memorable and highly important, as well as chess coaches that helped me on my way, but I wouldn’t be so dramatic to recall a turning point. This is because the key to success is hard work on my own.

What are your top book recommendations for beginner to intermediate players? (2000)

“My system” by Nimzowitsch is a must study book for players of every level. “My Great Predecessors” by Kasparov.

What are your top book recommendations for advanced players? (2200+)

In addition to above mentioned, “Endgame Manual” by Dvoretzky is very much recommended.

How did you become a Grandmaster? (What tournaments, did you have a chess coach, etc..)

I made my first GM norm in Israeli international open championship 2001, and then two GM norms in a row in Elekes memorial and First Saturday tournaments, both in Budapest 2002. At that time I had the chess coach GM Avigdor Bykhovsky, he definitely contributed to this success as well.

What was your exact study regimen when you were working towards GM? (What exactly did you study, what study materials do you recommend, how much were you working with a chess trainer to prepare, etc..)

I studied openings, checking the actual games by leading players, and then analysing them, improving my tactical skills by solving studies and exercises, as well as improving my knowledge in endgames, using old books (at that time the great Dvoretzky’s books about endgames hadn’t appear yet). I was working mainly on my own but also with a chess coach – it was about 80% working on my own, and 20% with my chess coach.

What is your study routine now? (how is it different?)

The only difference is that now it’s 100% working on my own.

What is next in your chess career – what are your aspirations as a player/instructor/promoter/organizer, etc..?

I will try to improve my play and get my rating as high as possible. In the near future I intend only to play, not to coach chess or organise.

Nature or Nurture: Do you think top chess players are born with a natural ability/gift or do they become so talented through hard work and the right environment?

It’s a combination of all the factors. The natural talent is important, but the key to success is hard work.

How do you feel about cheating in chess? (specific deterrents/punishments?)

It’s a big problem in modern chess. I do not know how to solve this, but the punishment should be life-time disqualification.

Who is your favorite player and why?

My favourite player is Robert Fischer. I admire his talent and determination, as well as the fact that he was the only player that managed to beat the “Soviet machine”.

Thanks to for letting us use their interface.


[Event “Israel Open Ch”]
[Site “Tel Aviv ISR”]
[Date “2001.04.16”]
[EventDate “2001.04.09”]
[Round “8”]
[Result “0-1”]
[White “Emil Sutovsky”]
[Black “Evgeny Postny”]
[ECO “C59”]
[WhiteElo “2604”]
[BlackElo “2432”]
[PlyCount “60”]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. Ng5 d5 5. exd5 Na5 6. Bb5+
c6 7. dxc6 bxc6 8. Be2 h6 9. Nf3 e4 10. Ne5 Bc5 11. c3 Qc7
12. d4 exd3 13. Nxd3 Bd6 14. Nd2 Bf5 15. b4 Nb7 16. Nc4 Rd8
17. Be3 O-O 18. Bxa7 Nd5 19. Bd4 Rfe8 20. Nxd6 Nxd6 21. O-O
Nb5 22. Rc1 Nbxc3 23. Rxc3 Nxc3 24. Bxc3 Rxe2 25. Qxe2 Bxd3
26. Qg4 f5 27. Qh4 Bxf1 28. Kxf1 Qd7 29. f3 Qd3+ 30. Kf2 Ra8


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