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Viktor Korchnoi
Korchnoi 
Korchnoi in Amsterdam, 1972; photograph courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.  
Number of games in database: 4,424
Years covered: 1945 to 2015
Last FIDE rating: 2499
Highest rating achieved in database: 2695

Overall record: +1688 -673 =1735 (62.4%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database. 328 exhibition games, blitz/rapid, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

MOST PLAYED OPENINGS
With the White pieces:
 King's Indian (267) 
    E99 E81 E60 E80 E94
 English (231) 
    A15 A13 A17 A14 A10
 Nimzo Indian (189) 
    E32 E21 E42 E54 E46
 English, 1 c4 c5 (145) 
    A30 A33 A34 A31 A35
 English, 1 c4 e5 (132) 
    A28 A29 A22 A25 A20
 Queen's Gambit Declined (121) 
    D30 D37 D31 D35 D38
With the Black pieces:
 French Defense (390) 
    C11 C07 C02 C09 C19
 Sicilian (266) 
    B45 B44 B83 B32 B89
 Queen's Indian (170) 
    E12 E16 E15 E17 E19
 Nimzo Indian (164) 
    E32 E46 E34 E21 E54
 Ruy Lopez (160) 
    C80 C83 C77 C82 C81
 Grunfeld (140) 
    D85 D94 D91 D97 D87
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Korchnoi vs Tal, 1962 1-0
   Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1994 0-1
   Korchnoi vs Udovcic, 1967 1-0
   Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 1-0
   Korchnoi vs Spassky, 1948 1-0
   Fischer vs Korchnoi, 1962 0-1
   Korchnoi vs Spassky, 1977 1-0
   Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1974 1-0
   S Tatai vs Korchnoi, 1978 0-1
   Spassky vs Korchnoi, 1977 0-1

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS: [what is this?]
   Karpov - Korchnoi World Championship Match (1978)
   Karpov - Korchnoi World Championship Match (1981)
   FIDE World Championship Knockout Tournament 2001/02 (2001)

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Bucharest (1954)
   Buenos Aires (1960)
   USSR Championship (1962)
   USSR Championship (1960)
   USSR Championship 1964/65 (1964)
   USSR Championship (1970)
   Palma de Mallorca (1968)
   Hastings 1971/72 (1971)
   Leningrad Interzonal (1973)
   USSR Championship 1961a (1961)
   Sousse Interzonal (1967)
   Buenos Aires (Konex) (1979)
   Palma de Mallorca (1972)
   Stockholm Interzonal (1962)
   USSR Championship (1952)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Match Korchnoi! (i) The Early Years (1956-1984) by amadeus
   Victor Korchnoi in Olympiads by capybara
   Victor Korchnoi in Olympiads by JoseTigranTalFischer
   Korch.noise woke up Fredthebear by fredthebear
   Korchnoi's 400 best games by Wade & Blackstock by Gottschalk
   Korchnoi's 400 best games by Wade & Blackstock by JoseTigranTalFischer
   Challenger Korchnoy by Gottschalk
   My Best Games (Korchnoi) by Qindarka
   My Best Games (Korchnoi) by DrOMM
   French Korchnoi II by AuDo
   Run for the Championship - Viktor Korchnoi by Fischer of Men
   JoseTigranTalFischer's favorite games by JoseTigranTalFischer
   French Korchnoi III by AuDo
   Fictional Atticus Finch Subpoenaed Fredthebear by fredthebear

RECENT GAMES:
   🏆 Korchnoi-Uhlmann Rapid Match
   Uhlmann vs Korchnoi (Feb-16-15) 0-1, rapid
   Korchnoi vs Uhlmann (Feb-16-15) 0-1, rapid
   Uhlmann vs Korchnoi (Feb-15-15) 1-0, rapid
   Korchnoi vs Uhlmann (Feb-15-15) 1-0, rapid
   Uhlmann vs Korchnoi (2014) 0-1

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Viktor Korchnoi
Search Google for Viktor Korchnoi


VIKTOR KORCHNOI
(born Mar-23-1931, died Jun-06-2016, 85 years old) Russia (federation/nationality Switzerland)
PRONUNCIATION:
[what is this?]

Viktor Lvovich Korchnoi was born in Leningrad, USSR. His father taught him chess when he was seven years old. He won the Soviet Championship four times: USSR Championship (1960), USSR Championship (1962), USSR Championship (1964/65) and USSR Championship (1970). He made eight appearances in the world championship candidates cycle. He reached the Spassky - Korchnoi Candidates Final (1968), but failed to beat Spassky. In the next cycle he won his quarterfinal Korchnoi - Geller Candidates Quarterfinal (1971), but lost his semifinal match to Tigran Vartanovich Petrosian. He made it to the Karpov - Korchnoi Candidates Final (1974), but lost.

Korchnoi defected from the USSR in 1976, and two years later he finally managed to win the Candidates and qualify for the Karpov - Korchnoi World Championship Match (1978). Trailing late with just two victories to Karpov's five, Korchnoi staged a comeback, winning three games to level the score at 5-5. However, Karpov then won the final game, thereby taking the match and retaining the crown. Korchnoi qualified again for the Karpov - Korchnoi World Championship Rematch (1981), but was beaten 6-2. In the next Candidates cycle he was beaten by the rising young Soviet star Garry Kasparov. He continued to play at a very high level throughout the 1980s and 1990s, though he never contended for the world title again. He did, however, capture the 2006 World Seniors' Championship, scoring nine points out of eleven games. Though never World Champion himself, Korchnoi defeated nine players who at some time held the title: Petrosian, Spassky, Karpov, Mikhail Botvinnik, Vasily Smyslov, Mikhail Tal, Robert James Fischer, Kasparov and Magnus Carlsen.

After defecting, Korchnoi settled in Switzerland, which he represented at Olympiads and other international events. He was ranked in the top 100 on the FIDE world rating list as late as January 2007 (aged 75), the oldest player ever so ranked.

Korchnoi suffered a stroke in December 2012, but returned to competitive chess beginning in 2014. He died in Wohlen, Switzerland on June 6, 2016, aged 85.

Wikipedia article: Viktor Korchnoi


 page 1 of 177; games 1-25 of 4,424  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. D Rovner vs Korchnoi 1-0201945LeningradC45 Scotch Game
2. Korchnoi vs Razov 1-0271946LeningradC50 Giuoco Piano
3. Zikov vs Korchnoi 0-1201946LeningradB00 Uncommon King's Pawn Opening
4. Petrosian vs Korchnoi 1-0231946URS-ch U18A90 Dutch
5. Y Vasilchuk vs Korchnoi 0-1601947LeningradB74 Sicilian, Dragon, Classical
6. V Shiyanovsky vs Korchnoi 0-1351947LeningradD47 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
7. L Aronson vs Korchnoi 0-1431947LeningradD44 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
8. Korchnoi vs Spassky 1-0121948LeningradB71 Sicilian, Dragon, Levenfish Variation
9. Korchnoi vs S Giterman 1-0361948TallinnC07 French, Tarrasch
10. Korchnoi vs Y Sakharov  1-0301949URS-ch qfD11 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
11. Korchnoi vs N Levin 1-0311949URS-ch qfE03 Catalan, Open
12. L Omelchenko vs Korchnoi 0-1321949LeningradC77 Ruy Lopez
13. Korchnoi vs Spassky 0-1511949LeningradB71 Sicilian, Dragon, Levenfish Variation
14. Korchnoi vs Shapkin 1-0181949MoscowD08 Queen's Gambit Declined, Albin Counter Gambit
15. V Golenishchev vs Korchnoi 0-1421949MoscowA90 Dutch
16. Korchnoi vs Kasparian 0-1381950URS-ch sfB10 Caro-Kann
17. Korchnoi vs Suetin  ½-½601950URS-ch sfB62 Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer
18. S Khavsky vs Korchnoi 0-1311950URS-ch qfB21 Sicilian, 2.f4 and 2.d4
19. Averbakh vs Korchnoi 1-0431950URS-ch sfB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
20. Korchnoi vs I Pogrebissky ½-½431950URS-ch sfB55 Sicilian, Prins Variation, Venice Attack
21. N Bakulin vs Korchnoi 0-1391950URS-ch qfB00 Uncommon King's Pawn Opening
22. Korchnoi vs Cherepkov 1-0681950Leningrad ch-cityC58 Two Knights
23. Korchnoi vs G Borisenko 0-1381950URS-ch sfC34 King's Gambit Accepted
24. Korchnoi vs O Moiseev 0-1411950URS-ch sfB57 Sicilian
25. M Aizenshtadt vs Korchnoi 0-1341950URS-ch qfD35 Queen's Gambit Declined
 page 1 of 177; games 1-25 of 4,424  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Korchnoi wins | Korchnoi loses  
 

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 99 OF 99 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Sep-16-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <SChesshevsky: On Pillsbury's page here at chessgames, it mention's the desire to take on Lasker. I didn't bother to investigate it further. There was no voice mail when I graduated high school.

Speaking of Maroczy, it appears he also wanted a match with Lasker but that didn't happen either.>

As with many things, you don't get a world championship match by just wanting it.

Maroczy came a lot closer to getting one than Pillsbury. A Maroczy-Lasker match was scheduled to take place in 1906(?) in Havana but fell apart because of political disruption, I think. Then Maroczy stopped playing competitive chess for about 15 years, whether out of frustration with Lasker or for other reasons I can't say.

Sep-16-17  Howard: Tamar seems to be assuming that the North Koreans will not have wiped out the entire world before 2027, but I guess we'll have to wait to see what happens.
Sep-16-17
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <Howard: Tamar seems to be assuming that the North Koreans will not have wiped out the entire world before 2027, but I guess we'll have to wait to see what happens.>

Just in terms of capabilities, we here in the US of A are a much bigger threat than the North Koreans in that respect, Howard.

Sep-16-17  Howard: Of course! But, that doesn't necessarily mean that the ever-cordial North Koreans can't set up a nuclear holocaust.
Feb-07-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  thegoodanarchist: Some interesting anecdotes here, some of them about Korchnoi.

<Petrosianic> posted the link in one of the Korchnoi-Petrosian 1974 match games. I got it from him.

http://www.chessdryad.com/articles/...

Feb-07-18  posoo: korchnoi likes 👘👟🎩🐶
Feb-08-18  morfishine: While <Petrosianic>'s list is interesting, how can he include such players as Zukertort, Kamsky, Nimzovich, Janowsky???, Morozevich & Marshall, yet not include Super Nez??? Rashid Gibiatovich Nezhmetdinov

In any case, if I had to pick the one best player to never be World Champ (instead of creating an unwieldly list of also-rans) I'd choose Bronstein, absolutely no question

*****

Mar-23-18  cunctatorg: There is not so fascinating chess player like Korchnoi nowadays, not even close!...

There is not any citizen of the Kingdom of Chess like Korchnoi nowadays, not even close!...

At least we have the chance of these comparisons; that's some part of Korchnoi's legacy.

Mar-23-18  botvinnik64: Happy Birthday Victor the Terrible!!!
You have passed, but will never be forgotten. I remember our battles...
Jul-21-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Sosonko has written a biography of Korchnoi. There sre excerpts and a review at
https://en.chessbase.com/post/a-fas...

<Korchnoi's escape to the West is a political humiliation and an insult for Soviet officials and they retaliate with all their power to punish the "Evil-Doer".>

And that is the title, "Evil-Doer".

Chessbase comments:
<Sosonko's reflections, comments, background information, and his benevolent view of the strenghts and weaknesses of Korchnoi connect and unite these stories and turn Evil-Doer into a very readable and entertaining book.>

Evil-Doer: Half a Century with Viktor Korchnoi
by Genna Sosonko
314pp
ISBN-10: 5950043383
ISBN-13: 978-5950043383
23.99.

Jul-22-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: Korchnoi looks like the brother of Richard Feynman in that photo.

Can it be a pure coincidence that "evil-doer" is an anagram of both "doe-liver" and "red olive"?

Hint: the answer is "Yes"

Finally, Sosonko's book is expensive. I bought some of his e-books on Amazon for 9 or 10 clams.

Sep-02-18  Pyke: Peter Svidler tells a cool Korchnoi story:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7oj...

Enjoy; without spoiling anything, it's basically about Victor's endless fighting spirit - much to the chagrin of his teammates.

Dec-20-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  gezafan: It's interesting that Korchnoi had excellent results against 1.e4 with every move but 1...e5.
Dec-21-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  Count Wedgemore: <gezafan> I think he had a rather good score on the black side of the open Ruy Lopez, which, during his long career, he played quite a few games in, I believe.
Dec-21-18
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Korchnoi's record in this DB with Black in the Open was +23 -22 =50, with many of those losses coming from the mid 1990s onwards, when his play had clearly declined. Prior to 1995-6, he enjoyed a significant plus with the line.

http://www.chessgames.com/perl/ches...

Jan-13-19  KID Slayer: Viktor is undoubtedly my favorite player ever. I admire his style to counterattack more aggressive folks like Tal or outmaneuver his equally positional foes such as Karpov. His games using the French as Black and beating the KID as White especially stand out to me.

My faves are his immortal against Tal and when he humiliates Karpov in epic fashion as below.

Korchnoi vs Tal, 1962

Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1994

Jan-13-19  JimNorCal: Who is behind Korchnoi, out of focus, in the photo ... perhaps Robatsch?
Jan-13-19  JimNorCal: From tga's 2/7/18 link to ChessDryad

Korchnoi played beautifully to achieve three wins, one loss, and one draw in the first five games against Tigran Petrosian in Odessa, April 12-24, 1974. Just after the fourth game Tigran Petrosian went to the match committee and requested in writing that Victor Korchnoi be asked not to move his leg up and down beneath the table so much! It was just a Korchnoi nervous habit and did not seem to disturb anything really. No noise or offence intended probably. But Petrosian mentioned that Korchnoi had actually kicked him beneath the table while reaching out to make a move. Surely it was an accident.... Korchnoi knew absolutely nothing of Petrosian's complaint throughout the night, and it was only upon arriving for the fifth game that he was shocked by the formal request to quit moving his leg in a kicking motion beneath the table! Korchnoi was furious but did not say anything to his opponent, beginning to make moves against Petrosian in the fifth game. You're not going to believe what happened next and at the worst possible moment. Petrosian, while shifting in the chair to adjust his hearing aid, kicked Victor Korchnoi accidentally! As match officials looked on with complete horror and silence. Everybody knew the match could explode any second. Korchnoi, now thoroughly in flames, sat there for a second and found what has to be one of the truly great one-liner punch outs of all times... "Mister Petrosian, please look for your match chances above the chess table rather than below it." That's the real story, how a great match really ended -- never reported by the wire services. Petrosian exploded, refused to continue the fifth game, and resigned the match forthwith.

Mar-23-19
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: He would have been 88 today. That's the number of kianos there are on a pea.

He will be sadly missed and long regretted.

Mar-23-19  botvinnik64: Korchnoi was playing in a Chess Olympiad, crushing one of his opponents, and, in a fit of (?) boredom, asked his opponent, "Do you speak English?" When the answer given was in the affirmative, Korchnoi once more leaned over the board to ask his adversary, "Well then, would you Pleeeze resign??!!" Vintage Korchnoi!
Mar-23-19  Violin sonata: Wow Viktor Korchnoi has the most number of games than any other player in the database, as far as i'm concerned
Mar-23-19  diagonal: <He will be sadly missed and long regretted>

At the age of 50, Korchnoi was still number two (in the official FIDE Elo list July - December 1981, with only 5 points behind number one, and 55 points ahead of number three).

At the age of 58 (July-December 1989), he was last in the Top-Five (five points behind to position three).

At the age of 68 (July-December 1999), he was last in the Top-Twenty of the World.

At exact 76, he last made the Elo Top-100, in March 2007, and Mighty Vic was never a player who has "frozen" his rating by playing just a few games periodically.

At the age of 80, Korchnoi beat in a competitive game (classical chess) a Super-GM with an Elo rating of 2700+, and won his last National Championship, more than fifty years after his first title (from USSR 1960 to SUI 2011).

Aug-03-19
Premium Chessgames Member
  PhilFeeley: <JimNorCal> What a great story! Probably one only we the chess players can like.
Aug-06-19  ZonszeinP: Korchnoi

Probably the greatest ever

Aug-06-19
Premium Chessgames Member
  gezafan: <JimNorCal: From tga's 2/7/18 link to ChessDryad

Korchnoi played beautifully to achieve three wins, one loss, and one draw in the first five games against Tigran Petrosian in Odessa, April 12-24, 1974. Just after the fourth game Tigran Petrosian went to the match committee and requested in writing that Victor Korchnoi be asked not to move his leg up and down beneath the table so much! It was just a Korchnoi nervous habit and did not seem to disturb anything really. No noise or offence intended probably. But Petrosian mentioned that Korchnoi had actually kicked him beneath the table while reaching out to make a move. Surely it was an accident.... Korchnoi knew absolutely nothing of Petrosian's complaint throughout the night, and it was only upon arriving for the fifth game that he was shocked by the formal request to quit moving his leg in a kicking motion beneath the table! Korchnoi was furious but did not say anything to his opponent, beginning to make moves against Petrosian in the fifth game. You're not going to believe what happened next and at the worst possible moment. Petrosian, while shifting in the chair to adjust his hearing aid, kicked Victor Korchnoi accidentally! As match officials looked on with complete horror and silence. Everybody knew the match could explode any second. Korchnoi, now thoroughly in flames, sat there for a second and found what has to be one of the truly great one-liner punch outs of all times... "Mister Petrosian, please look for your match chances above the chess table rather than below it." That's the real story, how a great match really ended -- never reported by the wire services. Petrosian exploded, refused to continue the fifth game, and resigned the match forthwith.>

I talked to someone who was present at the match in the audience. He said that Korchnoi and Petrosian ended up kicking each other under the table.

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