(1936 - )

David Isaacson in 1960

David Isaacson competed twice in the Durban championships, becoming the joint winner both in 1963 and in 1964. At the time he was one of South Africa's best players, having been selected for the South African chess Olympiad team in 1958 and in 1964. In the 1963 event, which was an unusual double round-robin, he beat co-winner Gerald Boulle twice, but a late loss to John Blackburn saw them tie on 8/10. I'm not sure why a playoff was not held between Boulle and Isaacson in 1963. Much the same happened in 1964, when he slipped up vs back-marker Stanley Brooks, this time resulting in a triple tie on 5½/7. This was the first time a triple tie occurred in the club's championship (the second such tie occurred in 2008). No playoff was held as Isaacson left for overseas in August, before playing in the Tel Aviv Olympiad in November 1964.

Isaacson was originally from Western Province, and twice won the Western Province Junior championships. He qualified as a doctor at the University of Cape Town, and was a regular contestant in the Cape Town championship. He also played in the South African championships on a number of occasions.


South Africa drew 2-2 against Australia thanks to this memorable victory:

Isaacson, David - Viner, Phillip
Olympiad XVI final D Tel Aviv (2), 1964

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 g6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Bg7 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Bc4 Qa5 8.0-0 0-0 9.Bb3 d6 10.h3 Nxd4 11.Bxd4 Bd7 12.f4 Be6 13.Nd5! Bxd5 14.exd5 Rac8 15.Qf3 Nd7 16.Bxg7 Kxg7 17.Kh1 Rc7 18.c3 b5 19.a3 Qb6 20.Rae1 Re8 21.Bc2 a5 22.Qg3! Nf6 23.f5 b4? (Losing to a brilliant double Rook sacrifice. Better was 23...Rf8 here) 24.fxg6 hxg6 25.Rxf6! Kxf6 26.Rf1+ Kg7 27.Rxf7+! (Stripping the black King of all its defences) 27...Kxf7 28.Qxg6+ Kf8 29.Qh6+ Kf7 30.Bg6+ Kf6 31.Bxe8+ (Quicker was 31.Bh7+ Ke5 32.Qg5# or 31...Kf7 32.Qg6+ Kf8 32.Qg8#) 31...Kf5 32.Qg6+ 1-0 (Since 32...Kf4 33.Qg4+ Ke3 34.Bh5 soon wins)

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