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Photograph courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.  
Rafael Vaganian
Number of games in database: 1,901
Years covered: 1967 to 2014
Last FIDE rating: 2577
Highest rating achieved in database: 2662
Overall record: +650 -332 =833 (58.8%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games
      Based on games in the database; may be incomplete.
      86 exhibition games, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 English (135) 
    A15 A14 A13 A17 A16
 Reti System (113) 
    A04 A06 A05
 King's Indian (96) 
    E62 E60 E63 E97 E69
 Queen's Indian (66) 
    E12 E15 E19 E17 E14
 King's Indian Attack (56) 
    A07 A08
 Queen's Pawn Game (52) 
    A46 D02 A45 A41 E10
With the Black pieces:
 French Defense (342) 
    C09 C07 C16 C18 C02
 French Tarrasch (133) 
    C09 C07 C04 C05 C08
 French Winawer (115) 
    C16 C18 C15 C19 C17
 Queen's Gambit Declined (99) 
    D37 D31 D35 D36 D30
 Orthodox Defense (99) 
    D58 D55 D59 D56 D50
 Alekhine's Defense (57) 
    B04 B03 B02 B05
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Reshevsky vs Vaganian, 1976 0-1
   Vaganian vs G Botterill, 1975 1-0
   Vaganian vs Kupreichik, 1974 1-0
   Lautier vs Vaganian, 2004 0-1
   Vaganian vs G Forintos, 1975 1-0
   Vaganian vs P Nikolic, 1985 1-0
   Van der Wiel vs Vaganian, 1993 0-1
   Vaganian vs Sveshnikov, 1980 1-0
   Vaganian vs Korchnoi, 1975 1-0
   Vaganian vs Bronstein, 1975 1-0

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS: [what is this?]
   FIDE World Championship Knockout Tournament (2001)
   FIDE World Championship Knockout Tournament (2004)

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Biel Interzonal (1985)
   Montpellier Candidates (1985)
   USSR Championship (1974)
   October Revolution 60th Anniversary (1977)
   Buenos Aires (Clarin) (1978)
   50th USSR Championship (1983)
   3rd Aeroflot Festival (2004)
   Phillips & Drew GLC Kings (1984)
   European Club Cup (2007)
   USSR Championship (1970)
   USSR Championship (1971)
   Politiken Cup (2006)
   EU-ch 4th (2003)
   36th Olympiad (2004)
   European Individual Championships (2007)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   USSR Championship 1983 by Benzol
   USSR Championship 1975 by Phony Benoni
   Rotterdam World Cup 1989 by suenteus po 147
   Hastings 1974/75 by suenteus po 147
   Moscow 1975 by suenteus po 147
   USSR Championship 1974 by suenteus po 147
   Montpellier Candidates 1985 by Benzol

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Rafael Vaganian
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FIDE player card for Rafael Vaganian

(born Oct-15-1951, 64 years old) Armenia

[what is this?]
Rafael Artemovich Vaganian was born in Yerevan. Awarded the GM title in 1971, he was a Candidate twice. In 1986 he lost to Andrei Sokolov (+0, =4, -4) and in 1988 he lost to Lajos Portisch (+0, =5, -1).

He won the USSR Championship in 1989 [rusbase-1] and played on the 1984 and 1986 USSR Olympiad teams. In 1984 he played Board 5 for the USSR in the USSR versus The Rest of the World Match against Zoltan Ribli.

He has achieved some excellent tournament victories, including Vrnjacka Banja 1971, Sao Paulo 1977, Las Palmas 1979, Manila 1981, Hastings 1982-83, Biel 1985 and Leningrad 1987. Today he remains a strong grandmaster.

Wikipedia article: Rafael Vaganian

 page 1 of 77; games 1-25 of 1,901  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves Year Event/LocaleOpening
1. Vaganian vs Karpov ½-½40 1967 05, MoscowE18 Queen's Indian, Old Main line, 7.Nc3
2. Vaganian vs Ulf Andersson 1-048 1968 GroningenA97 Dutch, Ilyin-Genevsky
3. Karpov vs Vaganian  ½-½43 1968 03, Riga ttB04 Alekhine's Defense, Modern
4. H Schaufelberger vs Vaganian  ½-½10 1969 EU-ch U20 prelB02 Alekhine's Defense
5. Ribli vs Vaganian  ½-½12 1969 EU-ch U20 prelC01 French, Exchange
6. Vaganian vs Ghizdavu  ½-½49 1969 EU-ch U20 final AD75 Neo-Grunfeld, Nxd5, 7.O-O c5, 8.dxc5
7. Karpov vs Vaganian ½-½45 1969 03, Leningrad jrB04 Alekhine's Defense, Modern
8. Ribli vs Vaganian 0-138 1969 GroningenD10 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
9. Vaganian vs Ghizdavu  1-043 1969 EU-ch U20 prelE69 King's Indian, Fianchetto, Classical Main line
10. Karpov vs Vaganian  ½-½53 1969 11, Leningrad jrB03 Alekhine's Defense
11. Vaganian vs K H Maeder  0-162 1969 EU-ch U20 final AE63 King's Indian, Fianchetto, Panno Variation
12. Vaganian vs Karpov 0-154 1969 01, Leningrad jrE14 Queen's Indian
13. Vaganian vs Podgaets  1-030 1969 URS-ch sfE69 King's Indian, Fianchetto, Classical Main line
14. S Webb vs Vaganian  0-139 1969 EU-ch U20 final AA16 English
15. Vaganian vs Karpov ½-½53 1969 09, Leningrad jrE20 Nimzo-Indian
16. P Atanasov vs Vaganian  ½-½47 1969 EU-ch U20 final AB02 Alekhine's Defense
17. S Webb vs Vaganian  ½-½17 1969 EU-ch U20 prelD59 Queen's Gambit Declined, Tartakower
18. Vaganian vs Ulf Andersson  1-041 1969 EU-ch U20 prelE69 King's Indian, Fianchetto, Classical Main line
19. E Turunen vs Vaganian  0-125 1969 EU-ch U20 final AA06 Reti Opening
20. Vaganian vs G Ligterink  1-027 1969 EU-ch U20 prelE11 Bogo-Indian Defense
21. Karpov vs Vaganian 0-144 1969 07, Leningrad jrB03 Alekhine's Defense
22. Vaganian vs A Lombard 1-040 1969 EU-ch U20 final AE19 Queen's Indian, Old Main line, 9.Qxc3
23. K H Maeder vs Vaganian  ½-½17 1969 EU-ch U20 prelB04 Alekhine's Defense, Modern
24. Vaganian vs H Schaufelberger  1-040 1969 EU-ch U20 final AA44 Old Benoni Defense
25. Vaganian vs Karpov 0-130 1969 05, Leningrad jrE50 Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3 O-O 5.Nf3, without ...d5
 page 1 of 77; games 1-25 of 1,901  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Vaganian wins | Vaganian loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 4 OF 4 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Oct-15-09  Davolni: Happy Birthday GM Vaganian!

All the best to you!

Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: "No, I never had one particular chess idol. Though I did have a model - Fischer. I knew all his games, I was in love with his playing. Like him I tried never to offer a draw, I always played to the bitter end."

- GM Rafael Vaganian

happy birthday GM Vaganian!

Premium Chessgames Member
  AgentRgent: Happy birthday GM Vaganian! Your games have been a great source of insight and entertainment for me. Thank you so much!
Dec-21-10  Everett: Sure it's been said somewhere on this thread, but I did not realize Vaganian was the 3rd best player in the world through most of '84 and '85, behind the two K's. In early '86 he was brought down to the pack of Korchnoi, Yusupov, Timman and Beliavsky.

Premium Chessgames Member
  suenteus po 147: A modest little tournament won by Vaganian some years back: Game Collection: Ter Apel Klooster 1992
Premium Chessgames Member
  jessicafischerqueen: Rare live film footage-

<Karpov> v <Vaganian> Blitz training games 1975

(with special guest appearance by Semyon Furman)

Aug-28-11  BobCrisp: <Vaganian> played a simul against the strong London Central YMCA chess club, some time in early 1975. <Jimmy Adams> wrote it up as <Rafael Vaganian in London Town> for the April 1975 <BCM> (alas, he omitted the date!).

<Rafa> had a tough time over 30 boards, scoring only +13 -10 =7. Unfortunately, none of the scores have made it into the <> far!

Oct-15-11  talisman: happy birthday to a great player!
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: A leading Chicago player used to refer to this player as "Vagina Man" because he didn't know the correct pronunciation. I've heard Christiansen say "vahg-ahn-yahn" and he should know.
Oct-15-12  paavoh: @FSR: <Vagina Man??> You are telling me that he could not be bothered to check the proper or less offensive pronunciation? Did anyone ever correct him?
Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <paavoh> I believe I told him the correct pronunciation.
Oct-15-12  paavoh: @FSR: Good for you - I think Vaganian deserved a better moniker than that!
Premium Chessgames Member
  PhilFeeley: What's he doing these days? Playing anywhere?
Premium Chessgames Member
  parisattack: <FSR: A leading Chicago player used to refer to this player as "Vagina Man" because he didn't know the correct pronunciation. I've heard Christiansen say "vahg-ahn-yahn" and he should know.>

Some years back I was re-watching an old James Bond movie - I think You Only Live Twice. There was a scene of a Russian spacecraft countdown with the Russian counting ... dva, oden (two, one) and then he said what sounded like 'vaganian' which I thought might mean blastoff or zero, but apparently not.

Any Russian scholar know what word he did say, what it meant, if it was at all like 'vaganian?'

Premium Chessgames Member
  FSR: <paavoh: @FSR: Good for you - I think Vaganian deserved a better moniker than that!>

True, though "Vagina Man" could be a fine name for a transgendered superhero.

Oct-16-12  Manoloo: The Vaganian Monologames
Dec-12-12  EdZelli: His true name is Vahanian. *Russians can't render the letter H hence the G substitution.
Oct-15-13  Kikoman: Happy 62nd Birthday GM Rafael Vaganian :D
Oct-15-13  kereru: His win against Reshevsky deserves to be in any greatest games of all time collection.
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <kereru> Reshevsky vs Vaganian, 1976
Oct-15-13  EdZelli: Sammy and Rafael, both legendary players.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: Happy Birthday <POTD>: Rafael Vaganian.
Apr-19-14  Ginos Vougas: Hi guys, I was wondering if there are any books about Rafael Vaganian and his games. Thank you!
Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: <Ginos Vougas> check this one..

Rafael Vaganian: Over 100 victories spanning his career (ELO 2600 series)

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <Frankly speaking, I donít like modern chess, and Iím not sure whatís going to happen next.>

I'll tell you what's going to happen: Anand won't win!

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