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1978 World Chess Championship
Compiled by Penguincw
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★★★ INTRO ★★★

The 1978 World Chess Championship was between 27 year old defending champion Anatoly Karpov of the Soviet Union and 47 year old challenger Viktor Korchnoi who at the time, did not represent a country.

★★★ QUALIFICATION ★★★

Karpov by forfeit won the title after Robert James Fischer decided not to play (see Game Collection: 1975 World Chess Championship for games and more info).

A new challenger was needed, so the same format as previous WCC cycles was held. In the first interzonal tournament (see Manila Interzonal (1976) for games and more info), Henrique Mecking won (13/19) and Lev Polugaevsky and Vlastimil Hort took the last two spots (each with 12.5/19).

In the other interzonal tournament (see Biel Interzonal (1976) for games and more info) Bent Larsen won with 12.5/18. Tigran Vartanovich Petrosian, Lajos Portisch and Mikhail Tal all tied with 12/18. A playoff was held (see Varese Interzonal Playoff (1976) for games and more info), in which Petrosian (4.5/8) and Portisch (4/8) booked a ticket to the Candidates tournament. Tal finished with 3.5/8.

In the Candidates tournament, Fischer (loser of the previous title by forfeit) and Korchnoi (finalist of the last candidates) were directly seeded. Fischer declined participation, so Boris Spassky (who placed 3rd in the last candidates) joined. It was a best of 12 (first to 6 1/2 points) format. In the quarter-finals, Korchnoi beat Petrosian 6 1/2-5 1/2 (see Korchnoi - Petrosian Candidates Quarterfinal (1977) for games and more info), Polugaevsky beat Mecking 6 1/2-5 1/2 (see Polugaevsky - Mecking Candidates Quarterfinal (1977) for games and more info), Spassky beat Hort 8 1/2-7 1/2 on tiebreaks (see Spassky - Hort Candidates Quarterfinal (1977) for games and more info), and Portisch beat Larsen 6 1/2-3 1/2 (see Portisch - Larsen Candidates Quarterfinal (1977) for games and more info).

In the semi-finals, it was a best of 16 (first to 8 1/2). Korchnoi beat Polugaevsky 8 1/2-4 1/2 (see Korchnoi - Polugaevsky Candidates Semifinal (1977) for games and more info) while Spassky beat Portisch 8 1/2-6 1/2 (see Spassky - Portisch Candidates Semifinal (1977) for games and more info).

In the finals, Korchnoi beat Spassky 10 1/2-7 1/2 to challenge Karpov for the title (see Korchnoi - Spassky Candidates Final (1977/78) for games and more info).

★★★ CONDITIONS ★★★

The match took place in Baguio City, Philippines. The winner would be the first to win 6 games (draws not counting), with an unlimited amount of games. Note: This match is measured in wins, with total score in brackets. Also, this time, there was no 5-5 advantage for the champion. The first game was played on July 18th, 1978.

★★★ FINAL ★★★

The last round (32) was played on October 18th, 1978. In the previous game, Korchnoi won again to tie the match at 5 wins apiece, after coming back from a 4-1 disadvantage. Karpov taking the white pieces, actually won game 32 to finish the match in 3 months, and 32 games winning 5-4 (16 1/2-15 1/2).

★★★ MINI TABLE ★★★

Karpov 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1 1/2 1/2 0 1/2 1 1 1/2 1/2 1 1/2 1/2 1/2 0 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1 0 0 1/2 0 1 (6 wins, 21 draws, 5 losses) <51.6% score>

Korchnoi 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 0 1/2 1/2 1 1/2 0 0 1/2 1/2 0 1/2 1/2 1/2 1 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 1/2 0 1 1 1/2 1 0 (5 wins, 21 draws, 6 losses) <48.4% score>

★★★ OTHER LINKS ★★★

See also: Karpov - Korchnoi World Championship Match (1978)

Head to Head Match up Prior to 1978: http://www.chessgames.com/perl/ches... (7 wins, 23 draws and 7 losses for both players)

Previous World Championship: Game Collection: 1975 World Chess Championship

Next World Championship: Game Collection: 1981 World Chess Championship

Game 1, Match tied 0-0 (1/2-1/2)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(D58) Queen's Gambit Declined, Tartakower (Makagonov-Bondarevsky) Syst, 18 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 2, Match tied 0-0 (1-1)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(C82) Ruy Lopez, Open, 29 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 3, Match tied 0-0 (1 1/2-1 1/2)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(E42) Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3 c5, 5.Ne2 (Rubinstein), 30 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 4, Match tied 0-0 (2-2)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(C82) Ruy Lopez, Open, 19 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 5, Match tied 0-0 (2 1/2-2 1/2)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(E42) Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3 c5, 5.Ne2 (Rubinstein), 124 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 6, Match tied 0-0 (3-3)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(A29) English, Four Knights, Kingside Fianchetto, 23 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 7, Match tied (0-0) 3 1/2-3 1/2
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(E47) Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3 O-O 5.Bd3, 42 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 8, Karpov leads 1-0 (4 1/2-3 1/2)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(C80) Ruy Lopez, Open, 28 moves, 1-0

Game 9, Karpov leads 1-0 (5-4)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(D37) Queen's Gambit Declined, 41 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 10, Karpov leads 1-0 (5 1/2-4 1/2)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(C80) Ruy Lopez, Open, 44 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 11, Match tied 1-1 (5 1/2-5 1/2)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(A07) King's Indian Attack, 50 moves, 1-0

Game 12, Match tied 1-1 (6-6)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(C81) Ruy Lopez, Open, Howell Attack, 44 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 13, Karpov leads 2-1 (7-6)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(D37) Queen's Gambit Declined, 61 moves, 0-1

Game 14, Karpov leads 3-1 (8 1/2-6 1/2)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(C82) Ruy Lopez, Open, 50 moves, 1-0

Game 15, Karpov leads 3-1 (9-7)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(D37) Queen's Gambit Declined, 25 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 16, Karpov leads 3-1 (9 1/2-7 1/2)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(C07) French, Tarrasch, 51 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 17, Karpov leads 4-1 (10 1/2-7 1/2)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(E47) Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3 O-O 5.Bd3, 39 moves, 0-1

Game 18, Karpov leads 4-1 (11-8)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(B08) Pirc, Classical, 64 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 19, Karpov leads 4-1 (11 1/2-8 1/2)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(E06) Catalan, Closed, 5.Nf3, 39 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 20, Karpov leads 4-1 (12-9)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(B15) Caro-Kann, 63 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 21, Karpov leads 4-2 (12-10)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(D37) Queen's Gambit Declined, 60 moves, 1-0

Game 22, Karpov leads 4-2 (12 1/2-10 1/2)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(C07) French, Tarrasch, 64 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 23, Karpov leads 4-2 (12 1/2-10 1/2)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(D37) Queen's Gambit Declined, 42 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 24, Karpov leads 4-2 (13-11)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(C83) Ruy Lopez, Open, 45 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 25, Karpov leads 4-2 (13 1/2-11 1/2)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(A22) English, 80 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 26, Karpov leads 4-2 (14-12)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(A21) English, 27 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 27, Karpov leads 5-2 (15-12)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(A29) English, Four Knights, Kingside Fianchetto, 41 moves, 0-1

Game 28, Karpov leads 5-3 (15-13)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(C82) Ruy Lopez, Open, 61 moves, 0-1

Game 29, Karpov leads 5-4 (15-14)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(A19) English, Mikenas-Carls, Sicilian Variation, 79 moves, 1-0

Game 30, Karpov leads 5-4 (15 1/2-14 1/2)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(A16) English, 42 moves, 1/2-1/2

Game 31, Match tied 5-5 (15 1/2-15 1/2)
Korchnoi vs Karpov, 1978 
(D35) Queen's Gambit Declined, 71 moves, 1-0

Game 32, Karpov wins 6-5 (16 1/2-15 1/2)
Karpov vs Korchnoi, 1978 
(B08) Pirc, Classical, 41 moves, 1-0

32 games

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