Boris Spassky

SpasskyBoris Vasilievich Spassky (Russian: Бори́с Васи́льевич Спа́сский) was born on January 30, 1937, in Leningrad, Soviet Union.

Spassky was a classical child prodigy and gained nation-wide attention by beating the Soviet Champion Mikhail Botvinnik in a simultaneous exhibition in 1947, at the age of ten. At 16 he played successfully in a strong international tournament in Bucharest, Romania, and at 18 he won the World Junior Chess Championship in Antwerp, Belgium. The GM title was awarded to him that year, which was a record at the time. In 1956 he qualified for the Candidates Tournament for the first time, in Amsterdam, and finished in the middle of the ten-player world-class field. He was just 19.

In 1966 Spassky played his first world championship match, against Tigran Petrosian. He lost it +3, =17, –4, but became the next challenger after beating Geller, Larsen and Korchnoi in Candidates matches. In 1969 he beat Petrosian by two points and became the tenth world champion in history. He lost the title to Bobby Fischer in the "Match of the Century" three years later.

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