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USSR vs. Rest of the World Tournament

Alexander G Beliavsky3.5/4(+3 -0 =1)[games]
Viktor Korchnoi2.5/4(+1 -0 =3)[games]
Garry Kasparov2.5/4(+1 -0 =3)[games]
Anatoly Karpov2.5/4(+1 -0 =3)[games]
Tony Miles2.5/4(+1 -0 =3)[games]
Zoltan Ribli2.5/4(+1 -0 =3)[games]
Robert Huebner2/4(+0 -0 =4)[games]
Mikhail Tal2/3(+1 -0 =2)[games]
Ljubomir Ljubojevic2/4(+1 -1 =2)[games]
Yuri Razuvaev2/4(+0 -0 =4)[games]
Eugenio Torre2/3(+2 -1 =0)[games]
Vladimir Tukmakov2/3(+1 -0 =2)[games]
Artur Yusupov1.5/3(+0 -0 =3)[games]
Jan Timman1.5/4(+0 -1 =3)[games]
Rafael Vaganian1.5/4(+0 -1 =3)[games]
Ulf Andersson1.5/4(+0 -1 =3)[games]
Murray Chandler1/2(+0 -0 =2)[games]
Lev Polugaevsky1/3(+0 -1 =2)[games]
Andrei Sokolov1/3(+1 -2 =0)[games]
Oleg Romanishin1/3(+0 -1 =2)[games]
John Nunn1/3(+0 -1 =2)[games]
Vasily Smyslov0.5/2(+0 -1 =1)[games]
Bent Larsen0.5/2(+0 -1 =1)[games]
Yasser Seirawan0/2(+0 -2 =0)[games] Chess Event Description
USSR vs. Rest of the World (1984)
Participants in the USSR team in board order were: Anatoly Karpov, Garry Kasparov, Lev Polugaevsky, Vasily Smyslov, Rafael Vaganian, Alexander Beliavsky, Mikhail Tal, Yuri Razuvaev, Artur Yusupov and Andrei Sokolov, with Vladimir Borisovich Tukmakov and Oleg Romanishin as alternate reserves.

Participants in the Rest of the World team in board order were: Ulf Andersson, Jan Timman, Viktor Korchnoi, Ljubomir Ljubojevic, Zoltan Ribli, Yasser Seirawan, John Nunn, Robert Huebner, Anthony Miles and Eugenio Torre, with Murray Chandler and Bent Larsen as alternate reserves.

Karpov 1 ½ ½ ½ Andersson 0 ½ ½ ½ Kasparov ½ ½ ½ 1 Timman ½ ½ ½ 0 Polugaevsky ½ 0 ½ - Korchnoi ½ 1 ½ - Tukmakov - - - ½ - - - ½ Smyslov 0 - - ½ Ljubojevic 1 - - ½ Tukmakov - 1 ½ - - 0 ½ - Vaganian ½ ½ ½ 0 Ribli ½ ½ ½ 1 Beliavsky 1 1 - - Seirawan 0 0 - - - - ½ 1 Larsen - - ½ 0 Tal ½ - 1 - Nunn ½ - 0 - Romanishin - ½ - - - ½ - - Tal - - - ½ Chandler - - - ½ Razuvaev ½ ½ ½ ½ Huebner ½ ½ ½ ½ Yusupov ½ ½ ½ - Miles ½ ½ ½ - Romanishin - - - 0 - - - 1 Sokolov 0 1 - 0 Torre 1 0 - 1 Romanishin - - ½ - Chandler - - ½ -

Round 1 2 3 4 Pts USSR 5 6 5½ 4½ 21 WORLD 5 4 4½ 5½ 19

The USSR vs. Rest of the World (1970) was the previous major match of Russia versus the World in a match pairings system.


Original collection: Game Collection: USSR vs. Rest of the World, by User: Benzol; based on Game Collection: USSR v Rest of the World, Match London 1984 by User: capybara.

 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 40  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Seirawan vs Beliavsky 0-1751984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldA13 English
2. E Torre vs A Sokolov 1-0391984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldE15 Queen's Indian
3. Karpov vs Andersson 1-0851984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldE11 Bogo-Indian Defense
4. Vaganian vs Ribli  ½-½231984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldE12 Queen's Indian
5. Timman vs Kasparov  ½-½231984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldD30 Queen's Gambit Declined
6. Tal vs Nunn  ½-½291984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldE94 King's Indian, Orthodox
7. Polugaevsky vs Korchnoi  ½-½271984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldE12 Queen's Indian
8. Yusupov vs Miles  ½-½281984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldE12 Queen's Indian
9. Ljubojevic vs Smyslov 1-0421984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldC42 Petrov Defense
10. Huebner vs Razuvaev  ½-½431984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldE12 Queen's Indian
11. Tukmakov vs Ljubojevic 1-0441984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldD52 Queen's Gambit Declined
12. Razuvaev vs Huebner  ½-½411984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldD17 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
13. Ribli vs Vaganian  ½-½191984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldA15 English
14. Nunn vs Romanishin  ½-½331984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldC84 Ruy Lopez, Closed
15. Miles vs Yusupov  ½-½321984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldD51 Queen's Gambit Declined
16. Beliavsky vs Seirawan 1-0301984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldD24 Queen's Gambit Accepted
17. A Sokolov vs E Torre 1-0421984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldC99 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin,
18. Andersson vs Karpov ½-½171984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldE19 Queen's Indian, Old Main line, 9.Qxc3
19. Korchnoi vs Polugaevsky 1-0401984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldA04 Reti Opening
20. Kasparov vs Timman  ½-½241984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldD58 Queen's Gambit Declined, Tartakower (Makagonov-Bondarevsky) Syst
21. Yusupov vs Miles ½-½801984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldD05 Queen's Pawn Game
22. Vaganian vs Ribli  ½-½411984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldE12 Queen's Indian
23. Huebner vs Razuvaev  ½-½301984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldC92 Ruy Lopez, Closed
24. Tal vs Nunn 1-0451984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldE94 King's Indian, Orthodox
25. Timman vs Kasparov ½-½581984USSR vs. Rest of the WorldC92 Ruy Lopez, Closed
 page 1 of 2; games 1-25 of 40  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-07-13  GumboGambit: For those keeping score, only about half of the USSR team was ethnically Russian. Kasparov, Beliavsky, Tal, Vaganian, Tukmokov, and Romanishin were from different Soviet republics. Lev P was born in what is now Belarus.
Aug-14-13  MarkFinan: All from the old Soviet union though?
Aug-14-13  galdur: Makes sense. The Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic accounted for roughly half of the population of the Soviet Union as did those of the Russian ethnicity.
Aug-14-13  RookFile: Evidently Beliavsky thought Larsen and Seirawan was "fresh meat", given the way he plowed right over them.
Aug-15-13  offramp: Kortschnoi was Russian as well; he played for both teams in the two matches.
Apr-14-14  zanzibar: From Chess Horizons V16N4 Aug-Sept 1984:

Sponsor: London Docklands

Each of the four rounds was contested on ten boards, each team allowed two reserves. All 24 players competed in at least one game. The average FIDE rating of the Soviet team was 2594, while the ROW's average was 2593.

Round scores: URS vs ROW (Rest of the World)

R1: 5 - 5
R2: 6 - 4
R3: 5.5 - 4.5
R4: 4.5 - 5.5
Total: 21 - 19

Apr-14-14  Howard: The 1970 USSR vs. ROW match was a huge success, due in no small part to the "return" of a certain Bobby Fischer. This was his first serious event in about 18 months, and he (rather surprisingly) yielded first board on ROW to Bent Larsen, thus playing second board against Petrosian.

The 1984 edition was organized on only about two weeks notice, which is probably a reason that Portisch didn't participate---he would have quite easily qualified for the ROW team.

But the Soviet team also had a noticeable absence----Petrosian ! As it turned out, he was terminally ill and he died just a few months later, at 55.

On a final note, a Soviet vs ROW match would have been virtually impossible to set up once Korchnoi defected, in 1976. The Soviets never would have agreed to such an event as long as the "traitor" Korchnoi was going to be on the ROW team. But in late 1983, the Soviets agreed to stop boycotting events that Korchnoi was taking part in, and thus they had little objection to the 1984 match taking place even if Korchnoi was on the "opposite side" as in 1970.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Might have been welcome objectivity on Fischer's part, for--as noted elsewhere--Larsen's results in the preceding three years or thereabouts had been spectacular, whereas Fischer had been only sporadically active.

My recollection is that Larsen was adamant that he should play first board for ROW and would not have played at Belgrade, had Fischer not acceded to this.

Apr-14-14  Petrosianic: I have heard a story from one chess publisher. Don't know if it's true or not. I don't remember where he got it from. But the way he told it, the top prize on boards was a car, and so Fischer might have taken the lower board hoping to increase his chances. But what he didn't take into account was that the Board 2 prize was a lot lower quality car than Board 1's. I have no idea where he got that story. I still know the guy, so I'm tempted to write and ask.

It reminds me of a case that was settled recently, where someone successfully sued her employer. She engaged in some activity where she was promised "a Toyota" if she completed some task. She did, and they gave her a "Toy Yoda" instead. *(No, I'm not making it up, if I were I would have told the story a little punchier.)

Apr-14-14  Absentee: <Petrosianic: It reminds me of a case that was settled recently, where someone successfully sued her employer. She engaged in some activity where she was promised "a Toyota" if she completed some task. She did, and they gave her a "Toy Yoda" instead.>

Way to encourage productivity.

Apr-14-14  Petrosianic: Yeah, as a joke, it's funny. To really do to somebody, it's not. I saw something similar in an old Bugs Bunny cartoon (which really was a joke). Same joke, except it was a double bluff. Daffy was doing some challenge against Bugs for a game show, where the prize was "a million bucks". He wins the challenge, only to find out that the prize is really "the million BOX", a big box with a million smaller boxes inside. Daffy graciously donates his prize to Bugs, only to find out that inside each of the million boxes was a crisp new one dollar bill. So it really WAS a million dollar prize. Oops!

Funny, except you could never collect a prize like that. If you opened one box a minute, it would take 694 days to open them all. That reminds me of the solution to an old Encyclopedia Brown story. Some villains had robbed the Bank of Mexico and stolen one million Pesos in one Peso notes (have you ever heard anything so contrived???) And one suspect who had some of the money claimed that he'd overheard the real robbers saying that counted the money again this afternoon, and it was short. The real robbers argued, and he got some of the money in the confusion.

The solution, of course, is that they could never have counted one million bills in one afternoon. And also that they would never have stolen a million one Peso bills in the first place, except of course, the story doesn't tell you THAT part!

Apr-14-14  TheFocus: <Petrosianic I have heard a story from one chess publisher. Don't know if it's true or not. I don't remember where he got it from. But the way he told it, the top prize on boards was a car, and so Fischer might have taken the lower board hoping to increase his chances. But what he didn't take into account was that the Board 2 prize was a lot lower quality car than Board 1's. I have no idea where he got that story. I still know the guy, so I'm tempted to write and ask.>

If you check out Game Collection: 1970 USSR vs. Rest of the World, you will see that Fischer won a Russian-built Moskvich, while the first board prize was a Fiat.

Apr-14-14  Howard: Petrosianic, if you Google...

"Fischer" and "car" and "USSR", you will find an article on the FIDE website which states that apparently a couple of cars were given away as special prizes, and that Fischer won one of them.

I don't know anything about the quality of the cars being an issue, but the story of Fischer yielding first board to his Western rival Larsen, was that Larsen insisted that since his recent tournament record had been nothing short of outstanding (no argument there !) and that Fischer's "tournament record" had been....nonexistent, then he should have first board, not Fischer.

Fischer agreed to step down and take second board, but later said he regretted the concession.

At any rate, it seems extremely doubtful that the matter of the cars was an issue here. Fischer was apparently eager to re-enter the chess scene, plus he was probably anxious to settle some scores with Petrosian. Before this memorable 1970 encounter, Petrosian had won three games against Fischer, while Fischer had taken.....only ONE game against the former world champion (not to mention several draws).

Apr-14-14  Petrosianic: Okay, so you and Focus agree that the story about the car is true. That that was Fischer's motivation seems to be the opinion of the guy who told me the story. Other motivations seem possible to me. Maybe Fischer just wasn't in the mood to fight about it and wanted to make sure that he played in this event. Or maybe he just didn't want to have a big battle with Spassky yet. Beating him then wouldn't mean as much (worse yet, what if he lost in such a short match). The real test between them was in 1972.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Everett: Beliavsky trounced the Seirawan/Larsen duo.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <Everett> Nothing new on that front: their total score was 5-1 with three draws for Big Al.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Everett: Wonder what Larsen did with the Fiat.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Maybe he sold the car and converted the proceeds into roubles--almost forgot, there would have been a small problem: his mortgage company would not accept those.
Apr-15-14  zanzibar: How many Bent Larsens are there in the world?

Aug-03-22  Sally Simpson: I was looking for another chess book (still not found it) when I discovered, behind a cabinet, the Ray Keene and David Goodman book on this event. (Batsford)

Been Re-reading the intro.
The match was originally planned for Belgrade and a sponsor was offering $1 million per game to Bobby Fischer if he played. Phone calls were made to get the ball rolling but nothing came of it. After all that excitement Belgrade lost interest and London took over.

The USSR did not mind Korchnoi playing for the R.O.W. He was allowed back into the fold after his refusal to claim his forfeit win v Kasparov. (which he lost and this led to the Moscow Marathon - thank you Victor.)

A few months before this event Karpov and Korchnoi shook hand before a game Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1984 for the first time in 6 years and 43 games.

I see many years ago I have attacked the book with corrections and scribbles.

In one game they give Nd7-b8 an '!' but then show a diagram with the Knight still on d7. This is followed by analysis with the Knight on d7. (it's not, it's still on b8 - pages 71 and 72)

These easily made wee slips make the book fun, proves the reader is paying attention and never forgetting I live in a glass house regarding throwing stones and a lot of the windows are broken.

They thought it was rather impolite of the dashing Yasser huffing off before the closing ceremony citing the reason being because he was dropped for losing two games. But we also learn in October 1983 he was named as the 'Cosmopolitan bachelor of the month.'

(why is this not in his bio? Slack research there I'm thinking.) Yasser Seirawan

Some smashing games to listen to again. A good find. I'm now off to look behind all the cabinets to see what else I've forgotten I had.

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