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tonlesu 32 ( +1 | -1 )
Charisma Who's got it , who don't.

When people speak of Jack or Bobby Kennedy you often hear the word charisma. Martin Luther King was said to be charismatic. Magic Johnson in basketball, Tiger woods in golf and etc., etc.

My question is who do you feel was the most charismatic (unofficial or official) world chess champion and who was the least charismatic and why?

kai_sim 155 ( +1 | -1 )
gosh I think that's a very hard question!
They all play chess and have charisma.
Most charisma...
I would say most charisma: Aristoteles, Xerxes, Kaiser Wu Ti, ...
Maybe it's Sissa! Yes, I'm sure it gotta be Sissa!
(for everyone who doesn't know: Sissa was the wise brahman who has been ask from the evil tyrann King Sharâm to claim a reward for introducing him to the game of chess. Sissa claimed so many wheat corns as you need to cover all 64 fields of the chessboard by putting 1 on the first square, 2 on the 2nd, 4 on the 3rd, 8 on the 4th, and so on...
He stopped laughing after he figured out that the sum from all 64 squares would cover entire India with a 1m thick layer of wheat.
The solution from the king to avoid the bankruptcy was as wise as the brahmane's idea: "he can take as many wheat as he can count".)
from the "new" time it's even harder to tell: rubinstein, Euwe and Capablanca...
Just a few I named, so many to go!
I think it's so hard to answer because you need to be brilliant, a genius, exceptional or all together to become a GM.
From our time I would say kasparov, radjabov, kramnik, ... Again, just a few I named, many for to go.
The least charisma is even harder to say I think. I actually never thought about that. Don't like to think about people I don't like. I'll leave that question open for others to answer ;p
tonlesu thank you for the nice thought and reminding me on all those old stories.

Best greetings you all
nils1981 47 ( +1 | -1 )
Least charismatic:
Nimzowitsch- On the pictures I have seen he sits like a shrimp, lurking in the corner.
Kramnik- Like Bill Gates, no charisma. Just pure nerd.
Ponomariov- Little pale weakling.

Most charismatic:
Kasparov- you can see he is someone.

I imagine that most professional chessplayers have no or very little charisma, always when I look at pictures from tournaments it strikes me how they look like losers.
More: Chess
olympio 104 ( +1 | -1 )
nils1982 first i'd like to say that your comments about kramnik and ponomariov are 100% alligned with mine. kramnik knows he's weaker than kasparov and has admitted that his victories were entirely psychological in nature. pono.. his comments seem self supporting which is funny because he's even less entitled to the title of world champion in modern times than euwe was in his day.

kasparov.. truly a brilliant player and possibly the greatest of all time. fischer has made some derogatory comments about kasparov but we all know that fischer is notorious for being outspokenly biggoted in his opinions of other peopole and.. races.. religions.. etc.

not sure why kai mentioned radjabov cause he's not a past or present world champion.. but i agree he is very likely to become the world champion within his lifetime. his play is like kasparov's (but as kasparov stated.. people like pono are more likely to become world champions in the years to come because of the degredation of chess that is the new time controls)
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atrifix 23 ( +1 | -1 )
Well I don't know anything about how Kramnik "knows he's weaker than kasparov", but I think that among world champions, the choices are fairly clear cut:

Most charismatic: Tal, Fischer
Least charismatic: Alekhine, Karpov
bluebabygirl 13 ( +1 | -1 )
Atrifix we agree mostly except I would say least charismatic Petrosian and Karpov.Most ,yes Fischer and Tal. BUT its hard to ignore Lasker.-BBG
olympio 29 ( +1 | -1 )
atrifix well i was basically referring to a recent interview where kramnik said kasparov's play was brilliant but he thinks he has an advantage in thath e's not intimidated by kasparov so the psychological warfare doesn't work on him at all. it seemed like he was implying that kasparov is the better player but i could be wrong
peppe_l 1 ( +1 | -1 )
Most charismatic Capablanca, Tal

calmrolfe 45 ( +1 | -1 )
Most Charismatic The Black Death "I've never spotted a crate of whisky that I couldn't down in one session of Chess !!" (Joseph Henry Blackburne)

Least charismatic - Karpov, Ponomariov, Botwinnik, Petrosian (basically, anyone "Russian" with the exception of Kasparov)

Least charming in defeat- Nimzovitch "HOW CAN I ALLOW MYSELF TO LOSE TO THIS IDIOT !!!"

Most charming in defeat - Judit Polgar "No, I don't mind at all if you retract your move, Gary"
olympio 11 ( +1 | -1 )
a note kasparov is probably the least charming in defeat

just look at his outburst at linares against radjabov.
youngglor 71 ( +1 | -1 )
About Charisma I think it is unfair to say if a person has charisma or not...but hey we all have are different opinions and i respect that. But there are other qualities in many of the chess players...and you cant really say hes a shrimp or not ;)

"Nimzowitsch- On the pictures I have seen he sits like a shrimp, lurking in the corner.
Kramnik- Like Bill Gates, no charisma. Just pure nerd.
Ponomariov- Little pale weakling. "

On chessbase there is an article about Kramnik, which shows hes a real nice guy...i mean some people just dont like talking...the more conservative type...i mean we cant blame him...we all sit like hermits around the little board with wooden statues.

Best wishes
anaxagoras 20 ( +1 | -1 )
This question does reduce to "Which chess players do you like?" Doesn't it?

If you don't see the irony in Nimzovitch's lamentation, then it's understandable that you would call it uncharismatic. I find it funny.
tonlesu 24 ( +1 | -1 )
Well A lot of people dont like Fischer but they think he was charismatic. Where ever he played he drew hugh crowds, thats an element of

As for Nimzovich, had you been the one he called an idiot---would you still find it funny?
olympio 17 ( +1 | -1 )
yeah I don't really see any irony in Nimzovich's comment either. I don't think anyone would find it funny except maybe a friend of his who was also a chess rank bigot.