Antoni Mayls

Antoni Mayls

British chess player, first British grandmaster.
Date of Birth: 23.04.1955
Country: Great Britain

  1. Biography of Anthony Miles
  2. Early Achievements and Education
  3. Successes and Contributions
  4. Later Years and Legacy

Biography of Anthony Miles

British chess player and the first British grandmaster, Anthony Miles was born in Birmingham. In 1968, he won the Under-14 Championship of Great Britain. In 1973, he finished second in the Junior World Championship in Teesside, narrowly losing to Alexander Beliavsky. The following year, Miles emerged victorious in the Junior World Championship held in Manila.

Early Achievements and Education

Miles enrolled in the University of Sheffield but dropped out to pursue a professional career in chess. In 1976, he became the first British grandmaster, a title that had previously been achieved by Jacques Mieses (1950), who emigrated to the UK from Germany at a mature age, and correspondence player Keith Richardson. For this accomplishment, Miles received a prize of £5,000. Just a few months later, Raymond Keene also earned the title of grandmaster.

Successes and Contributions

Miles achieved significant success in the late 1970s and 1980s. At the beginning of 1984, he held the 18th position in the Elo rating with a rating of 2599. In 1984, he won the tournament in Tilburg, and the following year, he shared first place in the same tournament with Viktor Korchnoi and Robert Hubner. Miles became the champion of Great Britain in 1982, a title he won for the first and only time.

Throughout his career, Miles defeated players such as Vasily Smyslov, Mikhail Tal, and Boris Spassky. In the 1980 European Team Chess Championship, Miles, playing with the black pieces, defeated the reigning world champion Anatoly Karpov by using the uncommon St. George Defense (1.e4 a6), a system that Miles helped popularize.

Miles played on the first board for the English national team in multiple Chess Olympiads, but he never managed to qualify for the Candidates Tournament. Nigel Short became the first British player to achieve this feat in 1985.

Later Years and Legacy

In the late 1980s, Miles briefly relocated to the United States, where he played without much success. He returned to the UK in 1991. In the 1990s, Miles won the Capablanca Memorial in Havana three times (1995, 1996, 1999). He reached the semifinals of the Intel World Chess Grand Prix in 1995, defeating Vladimir Kramnik and Loek van Wely but losing to Michael Adams. He also shared first place in the Continental Open in Los Angeles in 1998 with Suat Atalik, Lubomir Ftacnik, and Alexander Beliavsky.

In 2001, Miles won the Open Canadian Championship. Unfortunately, his health deteriorated, and he had to withdraw from the British Chess Championship that same year. On November 12, 2001, Miles passed away due to a heart attack. The seventh round of the ongoing European Team Chess Championship at that time began with a minute of silence in his memory.

Miles is known for his contribution to the development of the Miles Variation in the Queen's Indian Defense, which starts with the moves 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 b6 4. Bf4.