Geller, Efim Petrovich : Jews In Sports @ Virtual Museum

Geller, Efim Petrovich

Geller was exceptionally modest and restrained. He didn't have the drive to win at any cost, maintaining, "I don't support the sole reverence of first place victories. There are other worthy accomplishments.

As a young man Geller served in the airforce. He was an economist by profession.

Analytical by nature, Efim was a hot-tempered man. "If you dedicate your life to an occupation, you are obligated to handle this duty seriously," Geller reasoned. He took time off from chess only for his family: his wife Oksana and son Aleksandr, whom he considered his "best game."

Birth and Death Dates:
March 8, 1925 - Nov. 17, 1998

Career Highlights:

Geller won 7 Chess Olympiads as a member of the USSR team:
1952: scored 10.5 points out of 14
1954: 5 out of 7
1956: 7.5 out of 10
1962: 10.5 out of 12
1968: 9.5 out of 12
1970: 8 out of 12
1980: 6.5 out of 9

Geller was a two-time USSR Champion: in 1955, and again in 1979.
He participated in 23 USSR and 6 European championships.
Efim competed for the right to challenge the World Champion in 1953, 1956, and 1962-68.
He was known as a great opening theoretician.

Moscow, Russia (b. Odessa, Ukraine,USSR)

International Grand Master: 1952

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