The Top Chess Players in the World

GM Wolfgang Unzicker

Wolfgang Unzicker
Photo: Deutsche Fotothek, CC.
Full name
Wolfgang Unzicker
Jun 26, 1925 - Apr 20, 2006 (age 80)‎
Place of birth
Pirmasens, Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany


Wolfgang Unzicker was a German chess grandmaster, seven-time national champion, and 10-time first board at the Chess Olympiad (playing in 13 Olympiads overall). He played for West Germany prior to reunification. Unzicker won his first national title in 1948 and his last in 1965.

Although he never played professionally, Unzicker also won games against four world champions: GMs Mikhail Botvinnik, Vasily Smyslov, Mikhail Tal, and Bobby Fischer.

GM Nigel Short wrote Unzicker’s obituary for The Guardian in 2006, characterizing Unzicker as “always to have been held in high esteem” and, at the board, “a classical player...heavily influenced by” Siegbert Tarrasch.

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