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Karpov 
Photo copyright © 2006 by Milan Kovacs (www.milankovacs.com)  
Anatoly Karpov
Number of games in database: 3,560
Years covered: 1961 to 2014
Last FIDE rating: 2623 (2630 rapid, 2644 blitz)
Highest rating achieved in database: 2780
Overall record: +977 -232 =1301 (64.8%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games
      Based on games in the database; may be incomplete.
      1050 exhibition games, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

MOST PLAYED OPENINGS
With the White pieces:
 Sicilian (250) 
    B92 B81 B24 B44 B84
 King's Indian (185) 
    E60 E62 E81 E71 E63
 Queen's Indian (147) 
    E15 E17 E12 E16 E19
 Ruy Lopez (135) 
    C95 C82 C84 C92 C80
 Queen's Gambit Declined (115) 
    D37 D30 D38 D35 D31
 Grunfeld (98) 
    D85 D73 D97 D78 D87
With the Black pieces:
 Caro-Kann (273) 
    B17 B12 B10 B14 B18
 Queen's Indian (241) 
    E15 E12 E17 E19 E14
 Ruy Lopez (177) 
    C92 C95 C69 C77 C98
 Nimzo Indian (161) 
    E32 E54 E21 E53 E42
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (139) 
    C92 C95 C98 C93 C86
 Sicilian (92) 
    B46 B40 B44 B47 B42
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Karpov vs Kasparov, 1984 1-0
   Karpov vs Topalov, 1994 1-0
   Karpov vs Unzicker, 1974 1-0
   Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1974 1-0
   Kasparov vs Karpov, 1984 0-1
   Karpov vs Topalov, 1994 1-0
   Timman vs Karpov, 1979 0-1
   Karpov vs Gulko, 1996 1-0
   Karpov vs Kasparov, 1985 1-0
   Karpov vs Kasparov, 1984 1-0

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS: [what is this?]
   Karpov - Korchnoi World Championship Match (1978)
   Karpov - Korchnoi World Championship Rematch (1981)
   Karpov - Kasparov World Championship Match (1984)
   Karpov - Kasparov World Championship Match (1985)
   Karpov - Kasparov World Championship Rematch (1986)
   Kasparov - Karpov World Championship Match (1987)
   Kasparov - Karpov World Championship Match (1990)
   Karpov - Timman FIDE World Championship (1993)
   Karpov - Kamsky FIDE World Championship (1996)
   Karpov - Anand World Championship Match (1998)
   FIDE World Championship Knockout Tournament (2001)

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Hastings 1971/72 (1971)
   Leningrad Interzonal (1973)
   Madrid (1973)
   Bad Lauterberg (1977)
   USSR Championship (1976)
   Phillips & Drew GLC Kings (1984)
   Brussels World Cup (1988)
   Linares (1994)
   Trophee Anatoly Karpov (2012)
   Cap D'Agde (2013)
   Montreal (1979)
   Cap d'Agde (2008)
   San Antonio (1972)
   USSR Championship (1971)
   Superstars Hotel Bali (2002)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Karpov Tournament Champion - I by amadeus
   Anatoly Karpov - My Best 300 Games by jakaiden
   Karpov Tournament Champion - II by amadeus
   Match Karpov! by amadeus
   Anatoly Karpov's Best Games by KingG
   Guess-the-Move Chess: 1980-1989 (Part 1) by Anatoly21
   "Chess Genius Karpov" - Victor Baturinsky by Karpova
   a Karpov collection by obrit
   Anatoly Karpov's best games by Psihadal
   Basic Instinct by Imohthep
   How Karpov Wins 2nd Edition by BntLarsen
   Instructive Karpov Games by Billy Ray Valentine
   Karpov vs. the World Champions Decisive Games by visayanbraindoctor
   Guess-the-Move Chess: 1960-1979 (Part 2) by Anatoly21

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Anatoly Karpov
Search Google for Anatoly Karpov
FIDE player card for Anatoly Karpov


ANATOLY KARPOV
(born May-23-1951, 63 years old) Russia
PRONUNCIATION:
[what is this?]
Anatoly Yevgenyevich Karpov was born in the town of Zlatoust, located in the Southern Ural Mountains in the USSR. He learned to play chess at four years old and became a candidate master by age eleven. At twelve, Karpov was accepted into the chess academy presided over by Mikhail Botvinnik. Karpov won the World Junior Championship in 1969, thereby automatically gaining the title of International Master. In 1970, he became an International Grandmaster after finishing equal fourth at Caracas. A World Championship Candidate in 1973, he defeated Viktor Korchnoi in the Karpov - Korchnoi Candidates Final (1974) to earn the right to Karpov - Fischer World Championship Match (1975) with World Champion Robert James Fischer. When FIDE declared Fischer forfeited, Karpov became the 12th World Chess Champion, the youngest since Mikhail Tal in 1960.

Karpov defended the championship twice against Korchnoi in Karpov - Korchnoi World Championship Match (1978) and Karpov - Korchnoi World Championship Rematch (1981). After Karpov - Kasparov World Championship Match (1984) which was aborted with Karpov leading by 2 points over Garry Kasparov, he lost his title to Kasparov in Karpov - Kasparov World Championship Match (1985). He played three more closely contested matches with Kasparov, narrowly losing Karpov - Kasparov World Championship Rematch (1986), drawing Kasparov - Karpov World Championship Match (1987) and narrowly losing Kasparov - Karpov World Championship Match (1990).

Karpov was thrice Soviet Champion: in 1976*, 1983** and 1988***, on the latter occasion sharing the title with Kasparov. In 1993 Karpov regained the FIDE title against Jan Timman in Karpov - Timman FIDE World Championship (1993), after Kasparov had broken away from the organization. He successfully defended his title against Gata Kamsky in Karpov - Kamsky FIDE World Championship (1996) and Viswanathan Anand in Karpov - Anand World Championship Match (1998). In 1999 FIDE changed the rules, deciding that the World Champion would be determined by an annual knockout tournament, and Karpov retired from championship competition.

At Linares (1994), Karpov achieved one of the greatest tournament successes ever, distancing Kasparov by 2.5 points.

Outside of chess, Karpov has been linked to the company Petromir, which claimed in 2007 to have found a large natural gas field.****

* [rusbase-1]; ** [rusbase-2]; *** [rusbase-3]

**** Miriam Elder, The St. Petersburg Times, Issue # 1242, 2007.02.02, Link: http://sptimes.ru/index.php?action_... and The St. Petersburg Times, Issue # 1246, 2007.02.16, Link: http://sptimes.ru/index.php?action_...

Wikipedia article: Anatoly Karpov


 page 1 of 143; games 1-25 of 3,560  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves Year Event/LocaleOpening
1. V Kalashnikov vs Karpov ½-½62 1961 ZlatoustE15 Queen's Indian
2. Zadneprovsky vs Karpov 0-165 1961 ZlatoustE27 Nimzo-Indian, Samisch Variation
3. B Kalinkin vs Karpov ½-½32 1961 CheliabinskC97 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
4. Karpov vs V Kalashnikov 1-060 1961 ZlatoustC68 Ruy Lopez, Exchange
5. Karpov vs Maksimov 1-060 1961 MagnitogorskE81 King's Indian, Samisch
6. Tarinin vs Karpov 1-035 1961 ZlatoustC97 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
7. G Timoshchenko vs Karpov 0-153 1961 BorovichiC10 French
8. Karpov vs Gaimaletdinov 1-060 1961 ZlatoustC62 Ruy Lopez, Old Steinitz Defense
9. Shusharin vs Karpov 0-135 1961 CheliabinskC77 Ruy Lopez
10. Karpov vs Ziuliarkin 1-035 1961 ZlatoustB24 Sicilian, Closed
11. Karpov vs Nedelin 1-036 1961 BorovichiC97 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
12. Karpov vs Budakov ½-½26 1961 ZlatoustC99 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin, 12...cd
13. A Shneider vs Karpov 0-151 1961 CheliabinskC34 King's Gambit Accepted
14. Karpov vs Shefler 1-043 1961 ZlatoustC01 French, Exchange
15. Karpov vs A Alekseev ½-½58 1961 ZlatoustB40 Sicilian
16. E Lazarev vs Karpov 0-149 1961 CheliabinskD55 Queen's Gambit Declined
17. Karpov vs S Belousov 1-040 1961 BorowitschiC07 French, Tarrasch
18. Karpov vs Mukhudulin ½-½61 1961 ZlatoustB56 Sicilian
19. Korchnoi vs Karpov ½-½30 1961 SimulC47 Four Knights
20. V G Kirillov vs Karpov 0-163 1962 ZlatoustA20 English
21. Kolishkin vs Karpov ½-½39 1962 CheliabinskC86 Ruy Lopez, Worrall Attack
22. Karpov vs Piskunov 1-035 1962 ZlatoustB03 Alekhine's Defense
23. Karpov vs Tarinin 1-053 1962 CheliabinskC73 Ruy Lopez, Modern Steinitz Defense
24. Ziuliarkin vs Karpov 0-135 1962 ZlatoustC50 Giuoco Piano
25. V Kalashnikov vs Karpov ½-½36 1962 ZlatoustC97 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
 page 1 of 143; games 1-25 of 3,560  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Karpov wins | Karpov loses  
 

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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 203 OF 227 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jan-22-12  Antiochus: [Event "Rapidplay KO"]
[Site "Cap D"]
[Date "1998.??.??"]
[White "Karpov,An"]
[Black "Gelfand,B"]
[Round "null"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[WhiteElo "2725"]
[BlackElo "2675"]
[ECO "D10"]

1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. e3 e6 5. b3
Nbd7 6. Bb2 Bd6 7. Nf3 O-O 8. Bd3 e5 9. cxd5
cxd5 10. dxe5 Nxe5 11. Be2 Be6 12. O-O Nxf3+ 13. Bxf3 Be5 14. Rc1 Rc8 15. Qd2 Ne4 16. Nxe4 dxe4 17. Qxd8
Rfxd8 18. Bxe5 exf3 19. Bd4 Bd5 20. g4 Be6 21. h3
h5 22. gxh5 Bxh3 23. Rfd1 Rxc1 24. Rxc1 Rd5 25. Kh2
Rxh5 26. Kg3 Bd7 27. Kxf3 Bc6+ 28. Kg4 Rh6 29. Rc5
a6 30. Rg5 f6 31. Rc5 Kf7 32. a4 Rh2 33. f4
Rg2+ 34. Kh3 Rg1 35. b4 Rb1 36. Bc3 Rh1+ 37. Kg3
Rg1+ 38. Kh2 Rh1+ 39. Kg3 Rg1+ 40. Kh2 Rg2+ 41. Kh3
Rc2 42. a5 Rc1 43. f5 Rh1+ 44. Kg4 Rg1+ 45. Kf4
Rf1+ 46. Kg4 Ke7 47. Bd4 Rg1+ 48. Kf4 Rf1+ 49. Kg4
Kd6 50. Bc3 Rg1+ 51. Kf4 Rf1+ 52. Kg4 Rg1+ 53. Kf4
Rf1+ 1/2-1/2

Jan-22-12  Antiochus: [Event "Rapidplay KO"]
[Site "Cap D"]
[Date "1998.??.??"]
[White "Gelfand,B"]
[Black "Karpov,An"]
[Round "null"]
[Result "0-1"]
[WhiteElo "2675"]
[BlackElo "2725"]
[ECO "E00"]

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 d5 4. cxd5 exd5 5. Bg5
Be7 6. e3 c6 7. Bd3 Nbd7 8. Nge2 Nh5 9. Bxe7
Qxe7 10. g4 Nhf6 11. Ng3 Nb6 12. h3 Be6 13. Qc2
O-O-O 14. O-O-O Kb8 15. Kb1 Ne8 16. f3 Nd6 17. b3
Qh4 18. Qh2 Ka8 19. Nge2 Rhe8 20. Qg3 Qe7 21. Rhe1
h6 22. e4 dxe4 23. fxe4 Qg5 24. Qf4 Qh4 25. Qg3
Qg5 26. Bc2 h5 27. gxh5 Qxh5 28. Nf4 Qh6 29. h4
Bc8 30. Qg5 Rh8 31. Qxh6 Rxh6 32. Rh1 Rdh8 33. d5
g5 34. Ng2 cxd5 35. Nxd5 Nb5 36. Kb2 gxh4 37. a4
Nxd5 38. Rxd5 Nc7 39. Rd2 h3 40. Nf4 Kb8 41. Rhh2
Rh4 42. Rdf2 Ne6 43. Nd5 Ng5 44. Nf6 Be6 45. Kc3
Rd8 46. Kb2 Nh7 47. Nd5 Bxd5 48. exd5 Ng5 49. Rf5
Rg4 50. Kc3 Kc7 51. Bd1 Rg3+ 52. Kb4 Kd6 53. Bc2
Re8 54. Rf6+ Kxd5 55. Rd2+ Ke5 56. Rf5+ Ke6 57. Re2+
Kd6 58. Rxe8 h2 59. Rh8 Rh3 60. Rxh3 Nxh3 61. Be4
0-1

Jan-22-12  Antiochus: [Event "Rapidplay Gp A"]
[Site "Cap D"]
[Date "1998.??.??"]
[White "Vescovi,G"]
[Black "Karpov,An"]
[Round "null"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[WhiteElo "2525"]
[BlackElo "2725"]
[ECO "E12"]

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 b6 4. a3 Bb7 5. Nc3
d5 6. cxd5 exd5 7. Qa4+ c6 8. g3 Bd6 9. Bg2
O-O 10. O-O Re8 11. Bf4 Bxf4 12. gxf4 Nfd7 13. b4
b5 14. Qc2 a5 15. bxa5 Qxa5 16. Ne5 Nb6 17. e4
f6 18. Nd3 Na6 19. e5 Bc8 20. Ne2 Nc4 21. Ng3
Qd2 22. Qb3 Na5 23. Qb1 Qc3 24. Ne2 Qb3 25. Nb4
Qxb1 26. Rfxb1 Bf5 27. Nxc6 Nc7 28. Rc1 Nb3 29. Nb4
Nxc1 30. Rxc1 Ra7 31. Nxd5 1/2-1/2

Jan-22-12  Antiochus: [Event "Rapid Match"]
[Site "Guarulhos BRA"]
[Date "2006.??.??"]
[White "Vescovi,G"]
[Black "Karpov,Ana"]
[Round "1"]
[Result "1-0"]
[WhiteElo "2592"]
[BlackElo "2668"]
[ECO "B19"]

1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4 Bf5 5. Ng3
Bg6 6. h4 h6 7. Nf3 Nd7 8. h5 Bh7 9. Bd3
Bxd3 10. Qxd3 e6 11. Bf4 Qa5+ 12. Bd2 Bb4 13. c3
Be7 14. c4 Qc7 15. O-O-O Ngf6 16. Kb1 O-O 17. Rde1
Rfd8 18. Qc2 Bd6 19. Ne2 c5 20. g4 cxd4 21. Nexd4
Bf4 22. g5 hxg5 23. h6 Nf8 24. hxg7 Kxg7 25. Bc3
g4 26. Reg1 e5 27. Ne2 Qxc4 28. Nxf4 Qxf4 29. Nxe5
Ng6 30. Rxg4 1-0

Jan-22-12  Antiochus: [Event "Rapid Match"]
[Site "Guarulhos BRA"]
[Date "2006.??.??"]
[White "Vescovi,G"]
[Black "Karpov,Ana"]
[Round "3"]
[Result "0-1"]
[WhiteElo "2592"]
[BlackElo "2668"]
[ECO "B19"]

1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4 Bf5 5. Ng3
Bg6 6. h4 h6 7. Nf3 Nd7 8. h5 Bh7 9. Bd3
Bxd3 10. Qxd3 e6 11. Bf4 Qa5+ 12. Bd2 Bb4 13. c3
Be7 14. c4 Qc7 15. O-O-O Ngf6 16. Kb1 O-O 17. Rde1
Rfd8 18. Qc2 Nf8 19. Ne4 Nxe4 20. Qxe4 c5 21. d5
Bf6 22. g4 exd5 23. cxd5 Qd6 24. g5 hxg5 25. Bxg5
Qxd5 26. Bxf6 Qxe4+ 27. Rxe4 gxf6 28. Rg1+ Kh7 29. Nh2 Rd6 30. Re7 Rd7 31. Rxd7 Nxd7 32. Rd1 Nf8 33. Rd6
Ne6 34. Rd7 Kg7 35. Ng4 b6 36. Ne3 Nd4 37. b4
Re8 38. bxc5 bxc5 39. Rxa7 f5 40. h6+ Kxh6 41. Rxf7
Kg5 42. Rc7 Rb8+ 43. Kc1 Rb5 44. Nd5 Kg4 45. Nc3
Ra5 46. Kd2 Kf3 47. Ke1 Nc2+ 48. Kf1 Nb4 49. Kg1
Nd3 50. Nd1 Rxa2 51. Re7 f4 52. Rd7 c4 53. Nc3
Ra1+ 54. Kh2 Nxf2 0-1

Jan-22-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Shams: <Antiochus> Would you mind just uploading those games, instead of cluttering Karpov's player page with PGN? Thanks.
Jan-23-12  Antiochus: <Shams>
I'll try to do this, but you might have better luck because I'm being limited for not being a full member.

Please, follow the link below
http://brasilbase.pro.br/tv1998ca.htm
All games from this high-rated event
are absent of chessgames database. Thank You.

Jan-23-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Shams: <Antiochus> The PGN upload utility is open to all members, premium and not-yet-premium alike. It could not be easier to use, just cut and paste!

PGN Upload Utility

Thanks for uploading new games into the db, and for helping keep the player pages free for comments.

Jan-25-12  Antiochus: <Shams>Have you ever heard of Galileo and Francis Bacon? You know what's Empiricism?
So do not jump to conclusions, if you may not prove them.
Feb-17-12  Antiochus: "At 40 years old, the brain is not like before."

Anatoly Karpov.

Feb-18-12  rilkefan: <"At 40 years old, the brain is not like before.">

I don't have any sense of that yet in my case, but of course I don't have a way to measure myself independently like a GM does.

Feb-18-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: At 40 years old, nothing is like before.
Feb-18-12  King Death: < rilkefan: <"At 40 years old, the brain is not like before."> I don't have any sense of that yet in my case, but of course I don't have a way to measure myself independently like a GM does.>

I just wish I could remember what my brain was like at 40, a few months down the road my 50s will be nothing but a memory.

Feb-18-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: <"At 40 years old, the brain is not like before." Anatoly Karpov.>

Said probably after losing to Short (as I said - if someone in an advanced age loses/has a bad result, he is too quick on blaming his age for this). I wonder if he would still subscribe to these words at 43, when winning Linares 1994.

Mar-13-12  laurenttizano: I still pick karpov as my favorite,capablanca next,carlsen is magnus...next destination (Philippines!0-1)
Mar-15-12  Dr. Yes: Karpov in a private moment is said to have remarked, "Winning the WCC in 1975, was never so easy again."
Mar-17-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  Bobby Fiske: Spending Saturday afternoon with Karpov:

He is playing 1st board in the Bundesliga today at 1400 CET (1 hour from now).

Is there enough strength left in the old champ (currently Elo 2617) to beat GM Jobava Elo 2712?

LINK: http://bundesliga.liveschach.net/ (click on Karpovs name to get the game)

Mar-23-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: According to a feature at chessbase.com the current 40th ranked player is playing as well as Karpov did in the 1970s.
Mar-23-12  King Death: < ketchuplover: According to a feature at chessbase.com the current 40th ranked player is playing as well as Karpov did in the 1970s.>

Can we translate that as "Any of the top 40 players today would have the great record that Karpov did as world champion"?

Mar-24-12  solskytz: no - but this is not the point...

it's about a point of view

I don't think that there's a rating inflation - pushing yourself up to the standard of play that gets you even the Candidate Master title, at FIDE 2200, is hard as hell - try it and you'll see...

So who's a master today, let's say an FM, has gained a very respectful title; the guy knows a lot and sees a lot. I'm not convinced that he knows or sees less than anyone else who was called 'master' throughout the ages.

Same goes for the higher titles and levels.

So - do the top 40 today play as well as, or better than Karpov in the 1970?

The phenomenal master of the endgame, or subtle manoeuvering, or positional shades and nuances?

The one who crushes the opposition slowly but surely, with deadly precision?

The guy whose grip won't be relaxed? Who pushes to realization every minutest advantage and never for his life lets go of it?

The guy who was precise as a machine, and even Kasparov couldn't better him, except by a hair, for so many long years?

- - - - - - - - - - - -

Of course, it doesn't mean that the top 40 today all play in his style or use his ways of squeezing their points out of their opponents... but are they really as good or better? Could it be?

- - - - - - - - - - - -

But why not look at it this way - why not say...

Karpov was a legendary, amazing, totally phenomenal player, who was the fear of the 1970s after Bobby Fischer gracefully (or less so) left the stage

Even today, with all of the global progress in the understanding of chess - with training methods no longer kept secret, with chessplayers communicating easily all over the world, exchanging games and ideas also rapidly over the internet, with books and resources so readily available for the ambitious chess trainee - not to mention chess software, engines and databases... and theory generally better known, of all phases of the game, and with the population of serious competitors (tournament level players, or candidate masters and up, or masters, or GMs - look at it any way you want, the picture is quite the same) growing exponentially every decade, every year - even today, over thirty years later, only forty people in the entire world can match or improve upon the play of this legendary chess wizard of the past - Mr. Anatoly Karpov, the twelfth world champion!

Mar-24-12  edwitten: About all these comparing players and rating inflation debate:

1) Of course players today are better than decades ago. I'm not surprised that number 40 plays better chess than Karpov in the 70s. For the same reasons an average physics Phd today knows more than Isaac Newton did.

Does it means that it's better/smarter than Newton, on of the best minds of all times? Of course not.

2) Rating is not an absolute measure of strength, like times in running competitions.

It's always relative to other players.

So yes, there is rating inflation and you can't compare ratings between different decades.

Today Carlsen can keep a 2800+ raing scoring +2 or +3 in supertournaments, because he plays 2700+ and some 2800+ opponents.

When Fischer was 2780 the second was 2660. How could he jump to 2800? He had to virtually win every game.

Mar-24-12  solskytz: Fischer got to 2780 or 2785 because he WAS that much better. Put Carlsen in a 2680 tourney - and it's possible to calculate which result he needs in order to stay at 2835.

Rating is a system that shows in how good or bad shape you are.

There is an argument also for deflation in FIDE ratings.

Many new people enter the lists on every update. How do they enter?

They play a number of rated games. If they make 50% or less, their new rating matches their performance. Let's suppose that you're 'worth' 2100. You play a tournament and scored 3 out of 9 against 2230 opposition - your new rating will be 2100 more or less. Same if you did 4.5 out of 9 against 2100 opposition.

BUT - many of these people will score better than 50%. For example, you could score 6 out of 9 against 1970 opposition - still an approximately 2100 performance. However, according to FIDE's rating rules, you'll enter the system at around 2007. Many people enter the system with ratings that are too low in that way - I guess that it's just so it will be possible to protect against inflation...

however - now you're a 2007 rated player who's actually worth 2100. What will you do? You'll start robbing other players (hence, the system), from their scores until you make 2100, which is your level.

Until you actually reach that number, win, draw, or lose, every opponent who plays you gets whatever change they would get against a 'real' 2007 (or whatever number you reach along the way) while actually facing a 2100.

So - is there actual rating deflation?

food for thought...

Mar-24-12  solskytz: If there is actual rating deflation, it would mean that more than 40 people have mastered the necessary skill and ability to match Karpov on even terms (at least), when transferred to the 1970s (although I can imagine other very interesting activities that one would like to engage in if transferred into that decade... it would be a marvel!)
Mar-24-12  SimonWebbsTiger: if it has interest, a pluck of Karpov ratings:

1st January 1971: 2540
1st July 1972: 2630
1st May 1974: 2700 (Korchnoi had 2670 and Spassky 2640)

Mar-24-12
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: <Does it means that it's better/smarter than Newton, on of the best minds of all times? >

Better: yes
Smarter: no.

A better physicist is someone who can explain more. And here the modern student clearly wins. A smarter physicist is someone who can come up with more own ideas - and here Newton wins.

Better and greater are two different things. Don't mix them up.

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