On This Day

Garry Kasparov Becomes World Chess Champion

Garry Kasparov vs. Anatoly Karpov in Moscow on November 9, 1985
Garry Kasparov vs. Anatoly Karpov in Moscow on November 9, 1985

Historical Context

Garry Kasparov is known around the world for being one of, if not the greatest chess player in history. His reign of brilliance began on November 9, 1985, when he defeated previous world champion Anatoly Karpov. This was the second meeting of the champions; their previous match in 1984 had been cancelled due to the length of the game (5 months, from September 1984 to February 1985).

He defeated Karpov 13-11 and became the youngest ever World Champion, aged 22. From 1985 to 1993 he was the undisputed champion of the world, until he had a dispute with the FIDE (World Chess Federation) and set up his own organization, the Professional Chess Association. Though he lost the 'classical' championship title in 2000, he continued to play until 2005, and at the time of his retirement was the highest-rated chess player in the world.

His peak rating of 2851 was the highest ever in chess until it was surpassed by Norwegian Magnus Carlsen in 2013. Following his retirement, Kasparov became active in Russian politics, and emerged as a prominent dissident voice against President Vladimir Putin.

Photo Info

Photographer: Unknown
Date taken: November 9, 1985
Location taken: Moscow, Soviet Union

Source: Chessentials

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