Born: November 19, 1888 in Havana, Cuba
Died: March 8, 1942 in New York City, United States
Playing Style and Legacy:
Capablanca can be found near the top of most lists of the greatest chess players of all time. His legendary undefeated streak – spanning 63 games from 1916 to 1924 – made him seem invincible, at least for a time. He was especially renowned for his endgame play, as well as for his ability to quickly and accurately judge a position.
Capablanca made very few blunders, even when compared to other top players. His positional style was clear and direct; after gaining an advantage, he would attempt to avoid complications and simplify to a winning position.
World Championship Matches:
1927: Lost to Alexander Alekhine 18.5-15.5 (+3 -6 =25); Alekhine becomes World Chess Champion
- Defeated Cuban Champion Juan Corzo 7-5 in 1901, at the age of 13
- Won 1910 New York State Championship with perfect 20/20 score
- Won San Sebastian 1911 tournament (9.5/14)
- Won London 1922 tournament (13/15)
- Won New York 1927 tournament (14/20)
- Won Moscow 1936 tournament (13/18)
- Shared first at Nottingham 1936 with Mikhail Botvinnik (10/14)
- Won medal for best first board at the 1939 Chess Olympiad, at age 50