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Tal was an exuberant person. He was closer to a bohemian than a dissident in the Soviet Union. He became world champion by defeating Botvinnik in 1960. He was known for his wild attacking style. One game had to be moved to a private room because the crowd was so amazed by Tal’s slashing attack that they refused to be quiet.
In the mid 1980s, an Englishman who was working towards the grandmaster title was playing at the same tournament had this encounter. After Rogers drew an endgame minus 2 pawns vs. Viktor Garikov, Ian and his wife Cathy were joined in the lift by Tal, who asked how the adjourned game had gone. On being told, Tal cracked up with laughter…
“Soviet champion!..2 pawns up!..Only a draw!!
He was known for his hypnotic stare during games.
GM Pal Benko wore sunglasses when he played Tal in the 1959 candidates match.
Tal plays future world champion Spassky in speed chess.
Here are two more casual pictures.