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Lajos Portisch vs Boris Spassky
Portisch - Spassky Candidates Quarterfinal (1980), Mexico City MEX, rd 13, Apr-30
Queen's Indian Defense: Kasparov-Petrosian. Hedgehog Variation (E17)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: After normal time in the Portisch - Spassky Candidates Quarterfinal (1980) the score was level, 5-5. One win each, but Portisch had won a game as Black which meant that if the 2+2 playoff games were all drawn then the Portisch would go through.

This was the third playoff game. Games 1 and 2 had been drawn in 17 and 18 moves. If Spassky wanted to qualify for the next round he was leaving it VERY late.

May-15-17  Howard: This was the only Candidates match in which the "most wins with Black" method was used to break a tie.

It may have been unusual, but then as IM Jack Peters mentioned in the November, 1980 issue of Chess Life, both players had agreed to it before the match, so it was fair.

May-15-17  Petrosianic: Fair to the players, that is. Not fair to the public.
May-16-17  Howard: You may have a point there, but please keep in mind whose prize money (and rating points) were at stake here.

A problem with speed games being used to break ties, is that there is a very significant luck element involved for obvious reasons. Plus, they can be nerve-racking.

May-16-17  RookFile: Funny thing is, I love Portisch's game in the final positon of this one. He's got a space advantage and black's b7 bishop is locked out.
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Rookfile, agreed. It is the point where you HAVE to offer a draw, as Black. If White's advantage gets any bigger it would be bad etiquette to offer a draw.

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