Daughter talks of Tal’s final moments
“He was waiting to see us one last time…”
Mikhail Tal! While many argue over who was the greatest chess player of all time, none would dare to question that Misha Tal is chess’ greatest romantic legend. Tal scaled the Mount Olympus of chess (1960) in record time and did it in such a way that inspired following generations to take up the game. He owns the patent to the chess sacrifice…
Tal’s only daughter, Zhanna, has given a number of interviews on the subject of her famous father. Pianist, singer and actress, Zhanna speaks passionately in Stanislavs Tokalovs’ 2017 film Mikhail Tal: From a Far of her final moments with her father.
Zhanna feels pained to see that many writers and ‘acquaintances’ of her father have written that Tal’s early demise at age 55 was because of alcohol. Though Tal did drink a great deal (there is no doubt that he was an alcoholic, but no more than any Russian of his generation), his Russian doctors have testified that his liver was in great shape (like a baby!).
Smoking two packs of cigarrettes a day, Tal’s lungs were also in excellent shape. According to his daughter (and her mother) Tal drank to relieve the pain of perpetual kidney problems that he suffered all of his life