USSR vs the rest of the world match, Belgrade 1970
1st Draft, 06/06/1999
Insight and feedback appreciated for future drafts!



The match in the context of Russian chess player statistics
Board 1
Board 2
Overall match result
Match highlights

p2.jpg (123298 bytes)

The Soviet machine had churned out many World Champions. In the top row of the above picture, Petrosian sits with his hands clasped, followed by Mikhail Tal, Boris Spassky, Mikhail Botvinnik, and Vassily Smyslov.

The USSR vs the rest of the world match, Belgade, March 29 1970 to April 5 1970

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The match in the context of Russian chess player statistics :-

1922 1,000 registered chessplayers
1924 The Russian state took over control of chess with the formation of the All-Union Chess Section of the Supreme Council for Physical Culture
1929 150,000 players
1934 500,000 players
1966 3,540,000 players
1970 USSR vs Rest of World match
1990's over 5 million

Background to Board order on Boards 1 and 2

The Danish Grandmaster Bent Larsen had demanded to play board one for this match. Bobby Fischer who had emerged from idleness for over a year and a half, obliged to this demand.

Board 1

Larsen vs Spassky
Larsen vs Stein (reserve)

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Board 2

Board 2, Fischer vs Petrosian

fischer1970d.jpg (13780 bytes)

Bobby Fischer beat Petrosian with 2 wins and 2 draws.

Position after:

(372) Fischer,R - Petrosian,T [B13]
Beograd World-SU Rd:, 1970

1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.Bd3 Nc6 5.c3 Nf6 6.Bf4 Bg4 7.Qb3 Na5 8.Qa4+ Bd7 9.Qc2 e6 10.Nf3 Qb6 11.a4 Rc8 12.Nbd2 Nc6 13.Qb1 Nh5 14.Be3 h6 15.Ne5 Nf6 16.h3 Bd6 17.0-0 Kf8 18.f4 Be8 19.Bf2 Qc7 20.Bh4 Ng8 21.f5 Nxe5 22.dxe5 Bxe5 23.fxe6 Bf6 24.exf7 Bxf7 25.Nf3 Bxh4 26.Nxh4 Nf6 27.Ng6+ Bxg6 28.Bxg6 Ke7 29.Qf5 Kd8 30.Rae1 Qc5+ 31.Kh1 Rf8 32.Qe5 Rc7 33.b4 Qc6 34.c4 dxc4 35.Bf5 Rff7 36.Rd1+ Rfd7 37.Bxd7 Rxd7 38.Qb8+ Ke7 39.Rde1+ 1-0

Position after:

(373) Fischer,R - Petrosian,T [B15]
Beograd World-SU Rd:, 1970

1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 g6 4.e5 Bg7 5.f4 h5 6.Nf3 Bg4 7.h3 Bxf3 8.Qxf3 e6 9.g3 Qb6 10.Qf2 Ne7 11.Bd3 Nd7 12.Ne2 0-0-0 13.c3 f6 14.b3 Nf5 15.Rg1 c5 16.Bxf5 gxf5 17.Be3 Qa6 18.Kf1 cxd4 19.cxd4 Nb8 20.Kg2 Nc6 21.Nc1 Rd7 22.Qd2 Qa5 23.Qxa5 Nxa5 24.Nd3 Nc6 25.Rac1 Rc7 26.Rc3 b6 27.Rgc1 Kb7 28.Nb4 Rhc8 29.Rxc6 Rxc6 30.Rxc6 Rxc6 31.Nxc6 Kxc6 32.Kf3 1/2-1/2

Position after:

(783) Petrosian,T - Fischer,R [A37]
Belgrade URS-WORLD Belgrade (2), 1970

1.c4 g6 2.Nc3 c5 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 Nc6 5.Nf3 e6 6.0-0 Nge7 7.d3 0-0 8.Bd2 d5 9.a3 b6 10.Rb1 Bb7 11.b4 cxb4 12.axb4 dxc4 13.dxc4 Rc8 14.c5 bxc5 15.bxc5 Na5 16.Na4 Bc6 17.Qc2 Nb7 18.Rfc1 Qd7 19.Ne1 Nd5 20.Nb2 Bb5 21.Ned3 Bd4 22.Qb3 Nxc5 23.Nxc5 Rxc5 24.Rxc5 Bxc5 25.Nd3 Bxd3 26.Qxd3 Rd8 27.Bf3 Qc7 28.Bg5 Be7 29.Bxe7 Qxe7 30.Qd4 e5 31.Qc4 Nb6 32.Qc2 Rc8 33.Qd3 Rc4 34.Bg2 Qc7 35.Qa3 Rc3 36.Qa5 Rc5 37.Qa3 a5 38.h4 Nc4 39.Qd3 Nd6 40.Kh2 Kg7 41.Rd1 Ne8 42.Qd7 Qxd7 43.Rxd7 Nf6 44.Ra7 Ng4+ 45.Kg1 Rc1+ 46.Bf1 Ra1 47.e4 a4 48.Kg2 Ra2 49.Rxf7+ Kxf7 50.Bc4+ Ke7 51.Bxa2 a3 52.Kf3 Nf6 53.Ke3 Kd6 54.f4 Nd7 55.Bb1 Nc5 56.f5 Na6 57.g4 Nb4 58.fxg6 hxg6 59.h5 gxh5 60.gxh5 Ke6 61.Kd2 Kf6 62.Kc3 a2 63.Bxa2 Nxa2+ 64.Kb2 Nb4 65.Kc3 Nc6 66.Kc4 Nd4 0-1

Position after:

(784) Petrosian,T - Fischer,R [D90]
Beograd World-SU Rd:, 1970

1.c4 g6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 d5 4.Nf3 Bg7 5.cxd5 Nxd5 6.Bd2 c5 7.Rc1 Nxc3 8.Bxc3 cxd4 9.Nxd4 0-0 10.e3 Qd5 11.Nb5 Qxd1+ 12.Rxd1 Nc6 13.Bxg7 Kxg7 14.Be2 Bf5 15.g4 a6 16.Nc3 Be6 17.f4 Rfd8 18.Kf2 Nb4 19.a3 Nd5 20.Ne4 Nf6 21.Nxf6 exf6 22.Bf3 Rac8 23.Rxd8 Rxd8 24.Rd1 Rc8 25.Rd2 Rc7 26.h4 h6 27.Kg3 b5 28.Rd6 Rc2 29.b4 Rc3 30.Rxa6 Bc4 31.f5 g5 32.hxg5 hxg5 33.Kf2 Rc2+ 34.Kg1 Rc1+ 35.Kg2 Rc2+ 36.Kg3 Rc3 37.Kf2 Rc2+ 38.Ke1 Rc3 39.Ra5 Rxe3+ 40.Kf2 Rd3 41.Bc6 Kf8 42.Bxb5 Bxb5 43.Rxb5 Rxa3 44.Rd5 Rb3 45.Rd4 Ke7 46.Ke2 Ra3 47.Kd2 Rb3 48.Kc2 Re3 49.Kb2 Ke8 50.Kc1 Re2 51.Kd1 Ra2 52.Ke1 Rb2 1/2-1/2

Generated with ChessBase 7.0

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Overall match result

Board USSR         Rest of the World        
1 Spassky * 1 0 0 Larsen (Denmark) 0 1 1
2 Petrosian 0 0 Fischer (USA) 1 1
3 Kortchnoi 0 Portisch (Hungary) 1
4 Polugayevsky 0 Hort(Czech) 1
5 Geller 1 Gligoric (Yugoslavia) 0
6 Smyslov 1 0 1 Rehevsky (USA) 0 1 0*
7 Taimanov 1 1 0 Uhlmann (E. Germany) 0 0 1
8 Botvinnik 1 Matulovic (Yugoslavia) 0
9 Tal 0 1 Najdorf (Argentina) 1 0
10 Keres 1 1 Ivkov (Yugo) 0 0
  Totals 5 6 4 5   4 4 6 5
  USSR wins 20



The rest of World team was in rating order except Larsen/Fischer

* substitutes: Stein for Spassky, Olafsson for Reshevsky

2nd reserves
USSR : Bronstein
Rest of the World: Darga (W. Germany)

USSR had white on odds in Rd1 alternating thereafter

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Match highlights

The crucial point for the final overall result was Portisch giving a draw to a completely lost Korchnoi. Fischer had something to say about it at the time (!)

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Credits, a very powerful resource for any chess webmaster! :-

Many thanks to rdc on who retrieved the match results from BCM 1970 issue!
Many thanks to George Szasvari for point about crucial final overall result!

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