David Navara has a degree in logic from Charles University, Prague, and fierce logical gifts make the shy grandmaster a match for even the very best players. He first learned to play the game as a six-year-old, became an international master at 14 and a grandmaster at 16. He won his first Czech Championship in 2004, and in 2006 at the age of 21 he crossed 2700 on the rating list. His rating has oscillated wildly since then, but in team events especially he often posts fantastic results. In the 2012 Olympiad in Istanbul, for instance, he had the second best performance of any player with 9.5/11 on second board for the Czech Republic.
He was on the verge of his greatest individual
success when he reached the quarterfinals of the World Cup in Khanty-Mansiysk
in 2011, but his nerves failed him in a totally won position against Alexander
Grischuk. Nevertheless, Navara perhaps provided the most memorable moment of
that event when he offered a draw just as he was about to defeat Alexander
Moiseenko. The hyper-correct Navara felt awkward about a dispute that had taken
place earlier in the game, and subsequently both Navara and Moiseenko were
awarded a special fair play prize.
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