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Jose Raul Capablanca (1888 – 1942)


Cuban world-class chess master in the early to mid-twentieth century.
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Jose Raul Capablanca
"Against Alekhine you never knew what to expect. Against Capablanca you knew what to expect, but you cannot prevent it" M. Vidmar
Capablanca quotes
"Capablanca's planning of the game is so full of that freshness of his genius for position play, that every hypermodern player can only envy him." — Alexander Alekhine on his win against F.D. Yates at New York 1924.
Capablanca
"Chess was Capablanca's mother tongue." —— Richard Réti




Capablanca Jose Raul quotes
"I have known many chess players, but only one chess genius, Capablanca." — Emanuel Lasker
Capablanca Jose Raul
Morphy's principal strength does not rest upon his power of combination but in his position play and his general style....Beginning with la Bourdonnais to the present, and including Lasker, we find that the greatest stylist has been Morphy. Whence the reason, although it might not be the only one, why he is generally considered the greatest of all.
Jose Raul Capablanca quotes
Reviewing the history of chess from La Bourdonnais to the masters of our day right up to Lasker, we discover that the greatest stylist was Morphy. He did not look for complicated combinations, but he also did not avoid them, which really is the correct way of playing... His main strength lay not in his combinative gift, but in his positional play and general style. Morphy gained most of his wins by playing directly and simply, and it is this simple and logical method that constitutes the true brilliance of his play, if it is considered from the viewpoint of the great masters.
Jose Raul Capablanca
[Describing playing Capablanca] It was a unique feeling of helplessness. Of course, I knew very well I was outclassed not only by him but also by all the other seven world champions against whom I have played. But at least when I played them I had the feeling (often illusory) that there was at least a chance for me, possibly to draw and even, on rare occasion, to win. In the game with Capablanca there was no such feeling. Even my first move looked a little suspect to me! — Harry Golombek "World Champions I have Met."
Capablanca Jose Raul quotes
"It is difficult to explain why I cherish a greater imagination for him than any other player live or dead. … And yet Capablanca shoulders them all out of my mind when I am thinking of natural genius. The secret perhaps lies in Euwe's description of him as "the elegant". His easy natural grace of play was extraordinarily pleasant to watch, though very difficult to rival and not so easy to understand." — Harry Golombek "World Champions I have Met."
Capablanca
"I honestly feel very humble when I study Capablanca's games." — Max Euwe
Capablanca Jose Raul
"Capablanca didn’t make separate moves — he was creating a chess picture. Nobody could compare with him in this." — Mikhail Botvinnik
Jose Raul Capablanca
[I play in] the style of Morphy, they say, and if it is true that the goddess of fortune has endowed me with his talent, the result [of the match with Emanuel Lasker] will not be in doubt. The magnificent American master had the most extraordinary brain that anybody has ever had for chess. Technique, strategy, tactics, knowledge which is inconceivable for us; all that was possessed by Morphy fifty-four years ago.




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