May 15, 2011
The first Brazilian chess player who was awarded the International Grandmaster title in 1972.
In the period 1976-80, he was one of the top players in the world. Three times Brazilian Champion, the first time at 13, and after this success he devoted his life to chess.
At 15, he participated for the first time in the European chess competitions and took the seventh place at Hastings in 1966-67. At the age of 16, he took part in the Interzonal of Sousse where he shared the eleventh-twelfth place.
In the 1970s, he participated constantly in the World Championship cycles, and shared the eleventh-twelfth place in Palma de Mallorca in 1970, was the winner in Petropolis in 1973, and in Manila in 1976, but he lost in the quarterfinals of the Candidates Tournament to Viktor Korchnoi in 1974, scored 5½-7½ and in 1977 to Lev Polugaevsky with a score of 5½-6 ½.
He played successfully in several international tournaments and was first in Buenos Aires in 1967,
in Vrsac in 1971 followed by Lajos Portisch and in San Paolo in 1972. He did well at Mar del Plata in 1969 and at Hastings in 1971-72, where he shared third-fourth place; he shared the second place at Manila with Lev Polugaevsky, Bent Larsen and Helmut Pfleger behind Ljubomir Ljubojevic, and at Las Palmas in 1975 with Ulf Andersson, Mihail Tal behind Ljubojevic.
In 1979 his participation in the Interzonal tournament at Rio de Janeiro was interrupted because of his sudden contraction of the disease myasthenia (weakness of the muscles), and since then he did not play in any chess events. In the 1980s, he trained for the priesthood.
After a long break until 1991, he returned to chess playing without success in two matches vs. Predrag Nikolic and Yasser Seirawan.
At the present, he is still an active player but has lost the strength which made him a legend 30 years ago; however, he still won the Città di Lodi Festival in 2006. In 2008 he drew 2-2 with Alon Greenfeld.
Mecking considers himself to be the pupil of Robert Fischer.
Spassky said about him that he had pure style, and his play is full of rich tactic content.
Best ELO: 2635 in 1977