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Friday, February 3, 2017

Furman analyzing with Karpov USSR, 1970

Semyon Abramovich Furman was a Soviet chess International Grandmaster and trainer. He is best known for developing Anatoly Karpov into a World Chess Champion, but was a formidable player himself, as well as a successful coach for several other world-class players.

Furman also made a valuable contribution in the development of the theory of openings – Grunfeld and Nimzo-Indian Defence, Spanish Game, Queen Gambit and other openings.

Furman may have been the most successful coach in the history of chess. Chess culture has traditionally and typically credited the player for chess success, with the coach recognized in a much lesser fashion, or not at all.

Chess coaches were not commonly seen for top players until the post-WWII period, when competition became much stiffer. They were first developed in the Soviet Union and in other Eastern European countries; it is no coincidence that top players from these nations have dominated chess for the past sixty years.

Furman, with a very significant role in Karpov's development from his late teens, building upon earlier roles with World Champion Botvinnik and world-class players such as Bronstein, Korchnoi, and Geller, may have done more than any other coach, from the early 1950s until the late 1970s, to help ensure Soviet dominance.


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