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Boris Spassky
Number of games in database: 2,288
Years covered: 1948 to 2009
Last FIDE rating: 2548
Highest rating achieved in database: 2690
Overall record: +771 -212 =1263 (62.4%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games
      Based on games in the database; may be incomplete.
      42 exhibition games, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Sicilian (249) 
    B25 B24 B23 B20 B42
 Ruy Lopez (125) 
    C77 C92 C73 C95 C67
 French Defense (91) 
    C18 C11 C16 C19 C10
 Nimzo Indian (77) 
    E30 E31 E46 E53 E21
 Caro-Kann (75) 
    B17 B19 B18 B12 B14
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (59) 
    C92 C95 C93 C96 C86
With the Black pieces:
 Ruy Lopez (237) 
    C95 C64 C93 C84 C92
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (139) 
    C95 C93 C84 C92 C89
 Sicilian (119) 
    B83 B81 B31 B52 B80
 Orthodox Defense (98) 
    D58 D55 D59 D50 D63
 Nimzo Indian (76) 
    E58 E21 E47 E42 E46
 Queen's Gambit Declined (66) 
    D37 D35 D31 D30 D38
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Spassky vs Bronstein, 1960 1-0
   Larsen vs Spassky, 1970 0-1
   Spassky vs Petrosian, 1969 1-0
   Spassky vs Fischer, 1960 1-0
   Spassky vs Fischer, 1972 1-0
   Spassky vs Petrosian, 1969 1-0
   Spassky vs Fischer, 1972 1-0
   G Andruet vs Spassky, 1988 0-1
   Spassky vs Geller, 1968 1-0
   Spassky vs Larry Evans, 1962 1-0

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS: [what is this?]
   Petrosian - Spassky World Championship Match (1966)
   Petrosian - Spassky World Championship Rematch (1969)
   Fischer - Spassky World Championship Match (1972)

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   USSR Championship 1961b (1961)
   USSR Championship (1973)
   Bugojno (1978)
   Mar del Plata (1960)
   USSR Championship (1963)
   USSR Championship (1956)
   USSR Championship (1959)
   Palma de Mallorca (1968)
   Amsterdam Interzonal (1964)
   USSR Championship (1955)
   USSR Championship (1957)
   USSR Championship (1958)
   USSR Championship (1962)
   USSR Championship 1961a (1961)
   Gothenburg Interzonal (1955)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Boris Spassky's 400 Selected Games by jakaiden
   Match Spassky! by amadeus
   Road to the Championship - Boris Spassky by suenteus po 147
   Boris Spassky's Best Games by KingG
   Guess-the-Move Chess: 1960-1979 (Part 3) by Anatoly21
   Spassky! by chocobonbon
   Spassky The Legend by CharlieLuciano
   Match Petrosian! by amadeus
   Spassky: Getting out of Reykjavik by pawn to QB4
   Guess-the-Move Chess: 1940-1959 (Part 2) by Anatoly21
   Favorite Games from (1960-1979) by wanabe2000

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Boris Spassky
Search Google for Boris Spassky
FIDE player card for Boris Spassky

(born Jan-30-1937, 77 years old) Russia
[what is this?]
Boris Vasilievich Spassky was born in Leningrad, USSR. As a child, in 1943, he escaped from the siege of Leningrad by the Nazi forces in World War Two. In 1955 he won the World Junior Chess Championship and became a grandmaster - the youngest ever at that time - and in 1956 tied for first place as Soviet Champion (losing the title to Mark Taimanov), becoming the youngest player ever to qualify for the candidates round that would be won by Vasily Smyslov. Many people expected Spassky to be world champion before his 25th birthday, but his 5th place in the Soviet Championship of 1958 was not enough to qualify him for the Portoroz Interzonal. This was due to a last-round loss to Mikhail Tal (Spassky vs Tal, 1958), which shook him deeply.

After winning one of the 4 semi-finals tied with Rashid Gibiatovich Nezhmetdinov Leningrad champion of 1959 [rusbase-1] and 1961 [rusbase-2] and finally Soviet Champion in 1961 [rusbase-3]. Winner of the Russian Zonal [rusbase-4]. Spassky shared the first place with Smyslov and Bent Larsen at Amsterdam 1964 In 1965 he eliminated Paul Keres, Efim Geller and Mikhail Tal but failed to win against Tigran Vartanovich Petrosian, the world champion; Petrosian-Spassky World Championship Match (1966). As Sub-Champion, Spassky was pre-qualified for the next cycle, where he overcame Geller, Larsen and Korchnoi.

Spassky's style of play can be described best as lively and adaptable; this produced many brilliant victories. A position based on his victory in 1960 against David Bronstein was used in the James Bond movie, From Russia With Love. His style of play was key in defeating Tigran Vartanovich Petrosian in 1969 for the World Championship Petrosian-Spassky World Championship Rematch (1969). His polite, friendly disposition and his entertaining games have made him one of the most popular world champions ever. In the West, his tournament victory at Santa Monica 1966 is the most remembered

In 1972, Spassky was challenged by Robert James Fischer for the World Championship; Spassky lost, 12-8, ending the reign of 35-year Soviet hegemony over the World Championship. In the next year Spassky was the Soviet Champion [rusbase-5] ahead Anatoly Karpov, but lost to Karpov at the Candidates semifinal in 1974, after eliminating Robert Eugene Byrne. In 1977 he lost the Candidates final to Viktor Korchnoi, after eliminating Vlastimil Hort and Lajos Portisch with brilliant play. In 1992 he played a rematch against Fischer for five million dollars and lost once again, 10 to 5 (with 15 draws).

Wikipedia article: Boris Spassky

 page 1 of 92; games 1-25 of 2,288  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves Year Event/LocaleOpening
1. Spassky vs Rodgaisky 0-18 1948 URSB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
2. Korchnoi vs Spassky 1-012 1948 LeningradB71 Sicilian, Dragon, Levenfish Variation
3. Spassky vs Shman 1-035 1948 Trud ChD37 Queen's Gambit Declined
4. Korchnoi vs Spassky 0-151 1949 LeningradB71 Sicilian, Dragon, Levenfish Variation
5. Spassky vs Vilup 1-027 1949 LeningradD30 Queen's Gambit Declined
6. Spassky vs Avtonomov 1-021 1949 Soviet Junior QualifyersD28 Queen's Gambit Accepted, Classical
7. V Liavdansky vs Spassky 0-151 1949 LeningradB23 Sicilian, Closed
8. M Aizenshtadt vs Spassky  0-133 1951 LeningradD50 Queen's Gambit Declined
9. Estrin vs Spassky 0-119 1951 RigaC44 King's Pawn Game
10. Y Gusev vs Spassky 0-124 1951 RigaA00 Uncommon Opening
11. Furman vs Spassky 0-136 1952 LeningradD43 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
12. Korchnoi vs Spassky 0-147 1952 LeningradD10 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
13. Levenfish vs Spassky ½-½32 1952 TournamentD71 Neo-Grunfeld
14. G Chepukaitis vs Spassky 0-135 1952 tC31 King's Gambit Declined, Falkbeer Counter Gambit
15. Taimanov vs Spassky ½-½59 1952 LeningradD45 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav
16. Spassky vs J Yuchtman 1-028 1952 Rostov on DonE28 Nimzo-Indian, Samisch Variation
17. Sliwa vs Spassky 1-032 1953 BucharestD49 Queen's Gambit Declined Semi-Slav, Meran
18. Spassky vs Golombek  1-025 1953 BucharestE30 Nimzo-Indian, Leningrad
19. V Ciocaltea vs Spassky  ½-½21 1953 BucharestC50 Giuoco Piano
20. Petrosian vs Spassky ½-½15 1953 Bucharest (04)D13 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Exchange Variation
21. Spassky vs Radulescu  1-040 1953 BucharestD50 Queen's Gambit Declined
22. B Vladimirov vs Spassky 0-127 1953 LeningradD25 Queen's Gambit Accepted
23. Boleslavsky vs Spassky ½-½29 1953 BucharestD87 Grunfeld, Exchange
24. Spassky vs Z Milev  0-169 1953 BucharestD87 Grunfeld, Exchange
25. Spassky vs Smyslov 1-035 1953 1, BucharestE31 Nimzo-Indian, Leningrad, Main line
 page 1 of 92; games 1-25 of 2,288  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Spassky wins | Spassky loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: He's a bit of a Dick Shawn lookalike. Same sense of humour as well.
Premium Chessgames Member

This is pretty good! Spassky looks really really old too. I don't know why that shocks me because he isn't exactly a young man, but he hasn't aged too well.

Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: <Spassky looks really really old too. I don't know why that shocks me because he isn't exactly a young man, but he hasn't aged too well.>

Hm, I'd say he looks ok for his age. One could say "didn't age too well" if he looked like 90, but he doesn't.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MarkFinan: Check out the article and look at his picture? He looks mid 80's to me. Maybe it's because of his "mental break dance" as <offramp> so elegantly puts it!? I don't know much about him apart from those games with Fischer. Well compare him to Ringo Starr a man only 3 years his junior and you'll see what I meant.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: Put a moustache on Spassky and he would be the spitting image of Captain Kangaroo.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: I don't think I spelled moustache correctly.

Screw spell check.

Oct-03-14  ljfyffe: Must ache, nontheless. T's correct.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <I consider myself an idler, too, but the dimensions of Spassky's laziness were astounding> - Karpov.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Whatever one makes of Karpov's self-assessment of that facet of his character above, his mien at the chessboard displayed no lack of will power or ferocity.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: True. At the chessboard, Karpov was anything but lazy.

Didn't he win about a thousand tournaments?

Premium Chessgames Member
  PhilFeeley: How is the old man these days? I haven't heard anything more about the state of his health.
Nov-09-14  alfiepa:

It's sad see Spassky in this state .....

Nov-09-14  MissScarlett: <ChessVibes ‏@ChessVibes 3h3 hours ago

Memorable moment in Sochi: Boris Spassky, at a press conference, talking about Paul Keres and saying "I feel I will see him again soon.">

Nov-09-14  MissScarlett: <Boris Vassilievich, whom could you single out as a personality among chess players?

Undoubtedly, Paul Keres. He was the greatest treasure of the chess world. Being a man of great modesty and tact, he possessed the highest chess and general culture. His tragic destiny reminds of the end of Alekhine's life. And if we remember that for some time there was chess rivalry between Alekhine and Botvinnik, Id rather resort to some literary comparison. Keres was the Gulliver among the Lilliputians, he was a real giant. Botvinnik, I believe, was the leader of the Lilliputians. And that is the crux of the matter. As simple as that.>

Nov-09-14  Murky: Spassky speaks in English at the Carlsen-Anand WCh match. Calls Carlsen a 'gnome', a 'ghost from underground'. Not an insult at all Spassky explains; Carlsen is 'mysterious' and very good for chess.

Video clip here:

Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: Thanks for posting the Spassky interview, good stuff.
Nov-09-14  john barleycorn: Thanks <Murky>.
Nov-09-14  MissScarlett: Do they have gnomes (silent g, Boris) in Russia? Their spiritual heartland seems to be the English garden of the lower middle classes.
Nov-09-14  MissScarlett: From the pictures, it appears that Boris may have lost most or all of his teeth. The story goes that when Fischer had his fillings removed, and he was asked what would happen if his teeth fell out, he replied, 'I'll just have to gum it!'
Nov-09-14  john barleycorn: In the version I know he said "I'll get some vulcanizing".
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: He's doing ok for a guy that had a stroke. It's good that he wants to travel and see the games first hand.
Premium Chessgames Member
  PhilFeeley: I love the Liev Schreiber quote from the premiere of the film "Pawn Sacrifice":

"I know how to play chess, I just don't know how to win."

I can empathize with that!

Nov-16-14  MissScarlett: All Boris needs is a white cat and he could take over the chess world:
Dec-02-14  Zonszein: Mr Ilyumzhinov doesn't seem to be paying attention to what the great man is saying
Dec-11-14  MissScarlett: <Finally, there are some interesting historical anecdotes. Spassky (who, incidentally, clearly did quite a bit of work for the book, not merely lend his name to the project) notes (p. 7) that his years as world chess champion were the worst and most stressful of his career, bearing 'enormous responsibility' against the 'scalp hunters' and receiving no support. Keres replied with deep silence when Spassky told him he was lucky never to become world champion...>


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