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Igor Ivanov
I Ivanov 

Number of games in database: 1,032
Years covered: 1967 to 2005
Last FIDE rating: 2045
Highest rating achieved in database: 2470
Overall record: +473 -250 =292 (61.0%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database. 17 exhibition games, blitz/rapid, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 King's Indian (75) 
    E92 E94 E63 E90 E77
 English (43) 
    A15 A13 A10 A14 A17
 Nimzo Indian (34) 
    E30 E41 E32 E20 E44
 Queen's Pawn Game (31) 
    A41 D02 A46 E10 A40
 Sicilian (31) 
    B40 B83 B76 B52 B92
 Queen's Indian (26) 
    E12 E14 E15 E16 E17
With the Black pieces:
 Sicilian (131) 
    B62 B89 B22 B32 B60
 King's Indian (54) 
    E91 E81 E61 E77 E66
 Ruy Lopez (53) 
    C89 C84 C77 C92 C69
 Queen's Pawn Game (46) 
    A40 A46 A45 E00 E10
 Queen's Indian (30) 
    E12 E15 E16 E13 E14
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (27) 
    C89 C84 C92 C85 C93
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   I Ivanov vs V Zaltsman, 1983 1-0
   Seirawan vs I Ivanov, 1991 0-1
   V Vorotnikov vs I Ivanov, 1977 0-1
   I Ivanov vs Nabeiev, 1974 1-0
   I Ivanov vs Karpov, 1979 1-0
   I Ivanov vs Kudrin, 1989 1-0
   G Taylor vs I Ivanov, 1985 0-1
   L Cooper vs I Ivanov, 1987 0-1
   A Soltis vs I Ivanov, 1992 0-1
   Plaskett vs I Ivanov, 1983 0-1

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Quebec Championship (1985)
   Zaitsev Memorial (1978)
   Canadian Championship (1981)
   Canadian Championship (1986)
   Quebec Championship (1987)
   Canadian Championship (1987)
   Werfen Open-A (1991)
   46th URS-ch selection (1978)
   British Championship (1987)
   43rd USSR ch-1st League (1975)
   New York Open (1992)
   20th World Open (1992)
   93rd US Open (1992)
   Canadian Championship (2004)
   New York Open (1995)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   1986 Canadian championship by gauer
   Toluca Interzonal 1982 by Tabanus
   Toluca Interzonal 1982 by suenteus po 147
   1992 World open by gauer
   1981 Ivanov - Spraggett by gauer
   1994 Canadian open by gauer
   1981 Canadian championship by gauer
   Modern - Dzindzi's 4...Bxc3+ 5.bxc3 f5 by nakul1964
   1987 Spraggett - Ivanov by gauer
   Modern - Dzindzi's 4...Bxc3+ 5.bxc3 f5 by FSR

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Igor Ivanov
Search Google for Igor Ivanov

(born Jan-08-1947, died Nov-17-2005, 58 years old) Russia (federation/nationality Canada)

[what is this?]

A GM (2005) who played first board for Canada at the 1982 and 1988 Olympiads, Igor Vasilievich Ivanov was born in Leningrad, USSR. He accumulated 9.5 points for Canada in 21 team games. In 1980, after playing in Cuba as part of the Soviet team, Ivanov made his wild dash to freedom from the KGB in Canada during a refueling stop in Gander, Newfoundland. Igor settled in Montreal and quickly picked up French and English.

Ivanov and Kevin Spraggett would dominate Canadian chess over much of the next decade. Ivanov was awarded the IM title in 1981 as he won the Canadian Closed that year, thereby qualifying for the Toluca Interzonal, from which he narrowly missed qualifying for the candidates matches. He won both the Canadian Open and Canadian Closed twice, in 1981 and 1985.

Ivanov later lived in Arizona and Utah.

References: (1), (2)

Wikipedia article: Igor Vasilyevich Ivanov

Last updated: 2023-10-05 08:12:05

 page 1 of 42; games 1-25 of 1,045  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Trofimov vs I Ivanov  ½-½241967Tournament (corr.)B09 Pirc, Austrian Attack
2. C Shirok vs I Ivanov 0-12319686th Soviet Team Cup Group 2B45 Sicilian, Taimanov
3. I Ivanov vs V Lepeshkin  1-0441968Moscow-Leningrad MatchA46 Queen's Pawn Game
4. Feldman vs I Ivanov  0-1411969Spartak-chB64 Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer Attack
5. N Usov vs I Ivanov  1-0231969LeningradD61 Queen's Gambit Declined, Orthodox, Rubinstein Attack
6. O Kaminsky vs I Ivanov  1-0341969Spartak-chB03 Alekhine's Defense
7. Stasov vs I Ivanov  0-1401971RigaC82 Ruy Lopez, Open
8. I Ivanov vs Shamkovich  0-1681971URS-ch sf Ivano-FrankivskD58 Queen's Gambit Declined, Tartakower (Makagonov-Bondarevsky) Syst
9. V S Zhidkov vs I Ivanov  1-0301971URS-ch sf Ivano-FrankivskC85 Ruy Lopez, Exchange Variation Doubly Deferred (DERLD)
10. I Ivanov vs Savon  ½-½501971URS-ch sf Ivano-FrankivskE92 King's Indian
11. V S Zhidkov vs I Ivanov  1-02319717th Soviet Team Cup qual-3C69 Ruy Lopez, Exchange, Gligoric Variation
12. I Ivanov vs L Shusterman  1-03019717th Soviet Team Cup qual-3D80 Grunfeld
13. I Ivanov vs Gulko  0-14119717th Soviet Team Cup Final-AE14 Queen's Indian
14. Savon vs I Ivanov  1-03019717th Soviet Team Cup Final-AC69 Ruy Lopez, Exchange, Gligoric Variation
15. I Ivanov vs I A Zaitsev  ½-½4619717th Soviet Team Cup Final-AA25 English
16. V Shiyanovsky vs I Ivanov  1-04019717th Soviet Team Cup Final-AC89 Ruy Lopez, Marshall
17. I Ivanov vs V N Kozlov  ½-½44197212th Soviet Team Championship qual-1B06 Robatsch
18. I Ivanov vs I Kivlan  1-044197212th Soviet Team Championship Final-AE92 King's Indian
19. G Zaichik vs I Ivanov  0-140197212th Soviet Team Championship Final-AA04 Reti Opening
20. I Ivanov vs A Gorchakov  ½-½83197212th Soviet Team Championship Final-AB30 Sicilian
21. V Faibisovich vs I Ivanov  0-1411973Leningrad ChampionshipC89 Ruy Lopez, Marshall
22. I Ivanov vs A Reshko 0-1261973Leningrad ChampionshipA57 Benko Gambit
23. I Ivanov vs Korchnoi  0-1291973Leningrad ChampionshipE50 Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3 O-O 5.Nf3, without ...d5
24. Paniushkin vs I Ivanov  0-1201973USSR Army Team ChampionshipC30 King's Gambit Declined
25. V N Kozlov vs I Ivanov  1-0231974LeningradA34 English, Symmetrical
 page 1 of 42; games 1-25 of 1,045  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Ivanov wins | Ivanov loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Mar-29-09  grasser: <wrap99.> Well not me. I was King of my roost. 1981 Connecticut State Champion with only an Expert rating. Sure the TD was in heaven. I even picked them up at the train station at his request. I picked up the man that would defeat me. Dzindzi, the invader, crushed me. I am still ticked to this day because what they did was like raiding a scholastics. It was Hartford. They must have known there would have been no masters there.
Jul-23-09  myschkin: . . .

Site dedicated to the memory of GM Igor Ivanov:

Mar-20-10  jul059: Many more games from Ivanov that were played in Canada are available on the official chess federation of Quebec. Anyone willing to add them to chessgames? I haven't browsed through all of them, but some ought to be good.

Mar-26-10  wordfunph: 1997 North American Open in Las Vegas: Before 5th round game, Jerry Hanken saw IM Igor Ivanov examining the pairings and asked him, "Why the long face?" "Bad news. I have black against Gulko. My record is one draw and nine losses with him." Ivanov replied. Their game eventually ended in a draw…
Feb-03-11  Texas Skybear: Good Ivanov showed up. Gulko is a tough match. I would have tried my luck in the Baccarat instead.
Jan-03-13  waustad: I'm pretty sure I saw him playing at the Cardinal Open one year. If I recall correctly he was there as well as Roman Dz... and Joel Benjamin. They played up on a stage away from the riff raff like me.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: still resting in peace hopefully
Jan-17-15  Howard: Igor Ivanav did play at the 1988 Cardinal Open, I believe. Pretty sure I saw him there.

Patrick Wolff was definitely there, as well as Ben Finegold. Had a nice chat with Wolff---rather articulate young man.

Mar-01-15  Strongest Force: I think Igor may have drank himself to death. The few times I saw him in the park, he always had a large bottle of something. It seemed he could handle it; his play was always supreme and nobody could beat him.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <grasser: I didn't like him too much. He and Dzinzihasvilli would raid minor tournaments for the prize money.>

This reminds me of the time I met Ivanov in a serious game, at the 1982 Greater Boston Open, when Dzin dropped in as well. They went 4.5/5 for equal first, playing (bet you can't guess) a quick draw.

N B It was prize money and Grand Prix points, which were worth a little by year's end as well.

Mar-28-15  zanzibar: First, here is an excerpt from his obituary:

< Igor Ivanov, Utah's only grandmaster, died Thursday in St. George at the age of 58 after having been diagnosed with cancer in March.

"He was our state champion," said John Coffey, vice president of the Utah Chess Association. "He was our best player by far. Nobody else even came close.

"Serious chess players like having someone of that caliber. He'll be missed for the great player that he was."

Those unfamiliar with Ivanov would never have known the seriousness of his condition based on his play at the chess board.

At the Utah Open in Salt Lake City on Oct. 29, less than three weeks before his death, Ivanov tied for first place in the highest-rated section. First place outright was denied him when he became too ill to play one of his games.

"Before he became grandmaster earlier this year, it was said he was the strongest player never to make grandmaster," said Coffey. At the time of his death, the U.S. Chess Federation ranked Ivanov 50th in the country.

But his accomplishments in Utah pale in comparison to his career.

Ivanov, born Jan. 8, 1947, started playing chess at the age of 5 in his hometown of St. Petersburg (then Leningrad), Russia.

Though he was taught the game by his mother, he wrote on his Web site: "It was not long before I could beat [her]."

Ironically, Ivanov's mother didn't see much of a future in chess and asked her son to focus on music, hoping he would become a concert pianist.


Ivanov lived in Utah since 1991. He took first place in the Utah Open in 1991, 1992, 1996, 2001, 2003, 2004 and 2005, the only years he entered.

In August, Ivanov participated in the U.S. Open in Phoenix. Playing against some of the toughest competition in the country, Ivanov won five games, drew two, and requested half-point byes for health reasons in the first and final rounds to finish the tournament undefeated and tied for eighth place overall.

"Igor has truly added to the game of chess throughout the world and had a great respect for it," said Crooks. "To his last days he continued to study the game to improve upon himself." >

So, the cause of his death was cancer.

Next, could somebody please rewrite Ivanov's bio and remove the "ever improving Kevin Spraggett"

Unless the ever is forever.

A simple "He and Kevin Spraggett dominated" would suffice.

Mar-28-15  zanzibar: Plus, when he died, was he still a citizen of Canada.

I rather doubt it, given he lived from 1991-2005 in Utah, and apparently spent some years in Arizona before that.

Mar-28-15  zanzibar: Oh, here's a link to the obituary:

Chess grandmaster of Utah dead at 58
By Jay Talbot
The Salt Lake Tribune
Published November 20, 2005 12:09 am

Aug-20-15  JimNorCal: I played him in a simul. I brought a copy of Inside Chess magazine which had his photo on the cover as the world's strongest IM (did he ever get the GM title?). I think he was pleased (his eyes widened like he had not seen the issue before) but he squinched his face as if to say "if I'm so great, how come I'm here playing patzers like you?"

Crushed me like a bug, but I did get an autograph.

Feb-05-16  TheFocus: From <Mechanics Institute Newsletter #735>: Andy Ansel sends in the following creative effort by the late Igor Ivanov, who sacrifices his queen for two minor pieces and a couple of pawns.

Sicilian B53
Gary Simms–Igor Ivanov
New Mexico open 1991

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Qxd4 a6 5.c4 Nc6 6.Qd2 Nf6 7.Nc3 g6 8.b3 Bg7 9.Bb2 Qa5 10.Rb1 0–0 11.Nd5 Qxa2 12.Ra1 Qxb2 13.Qxb2 Nxd5 14.Qc1 Nc3 15.Bd3 Bg4 16.0–0 Bxf3 17.gxf3 Nd4 18.Qe3 b5 19.cxb5 axb5 20.Rxa8 Rxa8 21.Rc1 b4 22.Kg2 Nxb3 23.Re1 Bd4 24.Qf4 Be5 25.Qe3 Nc5 26.Bc4 Ra3 27.Qc1 Kg7 28.h4 h6 29.f4 Bd4 30.f3 N3a4 31.Re2 Nb6 32.Ba2 Nd3 33.Qd2 e5 34.fxe5 dxe5 35.Kg3 Nf4 36.Rh2 Nh5+ 37.Kg2 b3 38.Bb1 Nc4 39.Qb4 Ne3+ 40.Kh1 Ng3+ 0–1

Source: The Desert Knight January 1992 pages 18–19.

Feb-05-16  TheFocus: From the <Mechanics Institute #726>: From <Andy Ansel>.

King’s Indian E91
Walter Browne–Igor Ivanov
Los Angeles op (3) July 25, 1992

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Nf3 0–0 6.Be2 Bg4 7.Be3 Nbd7 8.0–0 c5 9.d5 a6 10.a4 Qc7 11.h3 Bxf3 12.Bxf3 Rae8 13.a5 e6 14.Qc2 exd5 15.exd5 Ne5 16.Be2 Nfd7 17.Bd2 f5 18.f4 Nf7 19.Rf3 Bd4+ 20.Kh2 Nh6 21.Bd3 Qd8 22.g3 Nf7 23.Ne2 Bg7 24.Rg1 Nh6 25.Re1 Nf6 26.b4 Ne4 27.Rb1 Nxd2 28.Qxd2 cxb4 29.Qxb4 Rf7 30.Kg2 Rfe7 31.Kf1 Nf7 32.Kf2 g5 33.Kf1 g4 34.hxg4 fxg4 35.Rf2 Qc8 36.Qd2 Re3 37.Qc2 h5 38.Bf5 Qd8 39.Be6 R3xe6 40.dxe6 Rxe6 41.Rxb7 Qxa5 42.f5 Rf6 43.Nc3 Qe5 44.Nd5 Qxg3 45.Qe4 Ne5 46.Nxf6+ Bxf6 47.Qd5+ Kh8 48.Qxd6 Qd3+ 49.Qxd3 Nxd3 50.Re2 Ne5 51.c5 1-0

Source: <Browne scoresheet>

Feb-05-16  TheFocus: From <Mechanics Institute Newsletter #729>: Andy Ansel sends in the following miniature by the late Igor Ivanov, which is not to be found in any database. Sicilian Rossolimo B31
Igor Ivanov–Lewis Eisen
Bermuda 9th International 1991

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 g6 4.0–0 Bg7 5.Re1 Nf6 6.e5 Nd5 7.Nc3 Nxc3 8.dxc3 0–0 9.Bf4 Qb6 10.a4 a6 11.Bc4 Qxb2 12.Qd2 Qb6 13.Bh6 d6 14.exd6 exd6 15.Bxf7+! Rxf7?

<15...Kh8 16.Bxg7+ Kxg7 17.Be6 Qc7 18.Bxc8 Raxc8 19.Ng5 with a large advantage.>

16.Re8+ Bf8 17.Qxd6 1–0

Source: <Schachwoche>, - April 1991, page 16.

Feb-05-16  TheFocus: From the <Mechanics Institute Newsletter #715>: <Andy Ansel> and <Fred Wilson> pass along two lost games of Igor Ivanov found in a notebook of the late Bruce Albertston.

QGD Tarrasch D34
Igor Ivanov–Bruce Albertston
New York (World Open) round 2, 1982

1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 c5 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.g3 Nf6 7.Bg2 Be7 8.0–0 0–0 9.Be3 c4 10.Ne5 Be6 11.Nxc4 dxc4 12.d5 Bd7 13.dxc6 Bxc6 14.Bxc6 bxc6 15.Qa4 Nd5 16.Rfd1 Qb8 17.Bd4 Nxc3 18.Bxc3 Qb5 19.Qc2 Rfd8 20.Qe4 Bf6 21.Bxf6 gxf6 22.Rdc1 Qxb2 23.Qg4+ Kf8 24.Qxc4 Rd6 25.Rcb1 Qe5 26.Rb7 Re6 27.Rd1 Rae8 28.e3 R8e7 29.Rd8+ Kg7 30.Rxe7 Rxe7 31.Qg4+ Qg5 32.Qc8 Qc5 33.Rg8+ Kh6 34.Qf8+ Kh5 35.g4+ 1–0

Source: <Albertston notebook.

QGD Tarrasch D32
Igor Ivanov–Bruce Albertston
New York (Bar Point) round 3, September 1980

1.c4 e6 2.Nf3 d5 3.e3 c5 4.b3 Nf6 5.Bb2 Be7 6.cxd5 exd5 7.d4 0–0 8.Be2 Nc6 9.dxc5 Bxc5 10.0–0 Be6 11.Nc3 Qe7 12.Nb5 Ne4 13.Rc1 Rac8 14.Nfd4 Nxd4 15.Nxd4 Ba3 16.Rxc8 Rxc8 17.Qa1 Bxb2 18.Qxb2 Qc5 19.f3 Qc3 20.Qxc3 Nxc3 21.Kf2 Nxe2 22.Kxe2 Kf8 23.Kd2 Ke7 24.g4 Bd7 25.h4 g6 26.Rh1 h6 27.a4 a6 28.g5 hxg5 29.hxg5 Kd6 30.Rh4 Ke7 31.Ne2 Bf5 32.Rb4 Rc2+ 33.Kd1 Rc7 34.Rb6 Bc8 35.Nf4 Rd7 36.Kd2 Rd6 37.Kc3 d4+ 38.exd4 Rxb6 39.Nd5+ Kd6 40.Nxb6 Be6 41.a5 Kc6 42.b4 Kd6 43.Kd3 Bf5+ 44.Kc4 Bh3 45.d5 Bg2 46.f4 1–0

Source: <Albertston notebook>

Feb-05-16  TheFocus: From the <Mechanics Institute Newsletter #714>: <Andy Ansel> and <Fred Wilson> pass along these three lost games of the Igor Ivanov found in a notebook of the late Bruce Albertston. They were played in the North Penn Fall Open in November 1982.>

C64: Ruy Lopez, classical defence
Pierce,W–Ivanov,Igor V
North Wales, PA (1), 1982

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Bc5 4.0–0 Nd4 5.Nxd4 Bxd4 6.c3 Bb6 7.d4 c6 8.Ba4 d6 9.dxe5 dxe5 10.Qxd8+ Kxd8 11.Nd2 Be6 12.Bc2 Ne7 13.b3 Kc7 14.Bb2 Ng6 15.h3 Nf4 16.Nf3 f6 17.Rfd1 Rad8 18.c4 Ne2+ 19.Kf1 Nd4 20.Nxd4 Bxd4 21.Bxd4 Rxd4 22.Rxd4 exd4 23.Bd3 g5 24.g4 h5 25.Kg2 hxg4 26.hxg4 Bxg4 27.Re1 Kd6 28.f3 Bc8 29.Rh1 Rxh1 30.Kxh1 Ke5 31.Kg2 Kf4 32.Kf2 c5 33.a3 a5 34.Bc2 Bd7 35.Bd3 a4 36.bxa4 Bxa4 37.Be2 Bc2 0-1

Source: <Albertston notebook>

D30: Queen’s gambit declined
Ivanov,Igor V–Szell,George
North Wales, PA (2) 1982

1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nbd2 e6 5.e3 Bb4 6.Bd3 Nbd7 7.0–0 dxc4 8.Nxc4 Be7 9.e4 Nb6 10.Na5 Qc7 11.a3 Bd7 12.b4 h6 13.Qe2 Na4 14.Qc2 Nb6 15.g3 Nh7 16.Bf4 Qc8 17.Rac1 Ng5 18.Bxg5 hxg5 19.Rfe1 Rb8 20.Qe2 Qd8 21.Nb3 Bd6 22.Qe3 Be7 23.Ne5 Na4 24.d5 Bf6 25.Nxd7 Kxd7 26.dxc6+ bxc6 27.e5 Be7 28.Be4 Ke8 29.Bxc6+ Kf8 30.Bxa4 f5 31.exf6 Qd5 32.fxe7+ Kxe7 33.Rc7+ Kf6 34.Qc3+ Kg6 35.Qxg7+ Kh5 36.Nd4 Kg4 37.Bd1+ 1–0

Source: <Albertston notebook>

E45: Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3, Bronstein (Byrne) variation
Nolan,Greg–Ivanov,Igor V
North Wales, PA (3) 1982

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 b6 5.Nge2 Ba6 6.a3 Bxc3+ 7.Nxc3 d5 8.cxd5 Bxf1 9.Kxf1 exd5 10.b4 0–0 11.g3 Nbd7 12.Qf3 c6 13.Bb2 Re8 14.Kg2 Ne4 15.Qe2 Ndf6 16.Rhd1 Qd7 17.h3 h5 18.Rac1 Ng5 19.Rh1 Rac8 20.h4 Nge4 21.Nxe4 Rxe4 22.Rc2 Ng4 23.Rd1 Rce8 24.Rd3 R4e6 25.Rdc3 Rf6 26.f3 Nh6 27.b5 cxb5 28.Rc7 Qe6 29.R2c6 Qxc6 30.Rxc6 Rxc6 31.g4 hxg4 32.fxg4 Nxg4 33.Qxb5 Nxe3+ 34.Kh3 Ree6 35.Qb3 Re4 36.Bc3 Rf6 0–1

Source: <Albertston notebook>

Dec-25-17  thegoodanarchist: So he died of cancer. Was he a smoker?

(Did not quite make it to age 59 - that is awfully young for a non-smoker to die of cancer, which is why I ask.)

Dec-25-17  PhilFeeley: He drank a lot of alcohol. That's known to cause cancer, too.
Jan-08-18  andrewjsacks: Few were more naturally talented at chess than "The Chicken Point King." We were lucky to have him in Southern California for years.
Jan-08-18  Sularus: happy birthday! RIP
May-01-18  morfishine: Ivanov even dropped in and played the Orlando Open in the mid-1980's I think. I saw him there and wandered over to observe his play in the Open section

It would be nice if we could retrieve some games from his last tournament where he tied for 1st, Utah Open 2005


Oct-17-20  Chesgambit: Very strong GM
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