Later, however, Capablanca (although in private life a fun-loving and chivalrous gentleman) meted out the same treatment to his most serious challenger, Alekhine. True to chess form, when Alekhine finally met and whipped Capablanca, he in turn refused to agree to a re-match.
Chess books are embarrassingly replete with expressions of egocentricity and poor sportsmanship. After Tarrasch lost to Lasker, he filled his books with "proof" that he should have won.
Most shocking of all, recent research has shown that Alekhine sometimes tampered with the scores of games in his books, to make his showing seem more brilliant.
THE BLACK AND THE WHITE
Asked whether he preferred the white or black pieces, Bogoljubow replied: "I have no preference. When I play white, I win because I have the first move. When I play black, I win because I am Bogoljubow!" And the eccentric Dane Nimzowitsch once jumped on a table, shouting: "Why must I lose to this idiot!"
5) Most chess experts have no special mathematical prowess.
Few chess champions have been mathematicians of any exceptional power, although Lasker did advance research in the theory of relativity and Botvinnik today is a highly respected engineer. Extensive studies of leading players have shown that "intuitive insight," or vision, is the key to good chess, rather than the strictly logical deduction demanded in mathematics.
The game of bridge, for instance, requires more mathematical aptitude than does chess—yet, speaking of the great Alekhine, Fred Reinfeld in The Human Side of Chess says that: "There is a general agreement that he was abominable at bridge." Moreover, professional mathematicians and logicians in universities show no superiority in chess over their colleagues in other departments. All of which leads to the next point.
6) Memory and foresight play a smaller part than is believed.
In his exhaustive study called The Chess Mind, Gerald Abrahams concludes that "it is hardly possible for a good chess player to be reliant upon memory in more than the slightest degree."