31st USSR Championship, Leningrad 1963 Score Sheet Ratmir Kholmov and Vladimir Bagirov

Author: Bagirov, Vladimir (1936 - 2000) and Ratmir Dmitrievich Kholmov (1925 -2006) signed

Publisher: Russian Chess Federation

Location: Leningrad

Year: 1963



14 (10 1/4" x 5 1/2") original green score sheet in Vladimir Bagirov's hand. Signed by both contestants Ratmir Kholmov and Vladimir Bagirov. Game 84 in round 9, French open, Tarrasch variation, 43 moves, of the tournament which was a draw. Ratmir Kholmov tied for first, but lost out to Stein and Spassky in the play off. Vladimir Bagirov captured sole eleventh

The 31st Soviet Chess Championship was played in the city of Leningrad from November 23rd to December 27th, 1963. Twenty of the Soviet Union's best grandmasters competed in the round robin event, with only two noticeable absences: the newly crowned world champion Tigran Petrosian and the newly deposed Mikhail Botvinnik. As usual, the field was composed of players who had qualified from the very strong Soviet semi-finals held earlier in the year: Viacheslav Osnos, Boris Spassky, Alexey Suetin, and Igor Bondarevsky qualified from Kharkov; Lev Polugaevsky, Iivo Nei, Arkady Novopashin, and Alexander Zakharov qualified from Moscow; Ratmir Kholmov, Leonid Stein, Eduard Gufeld, and Semyon Furman qualified from Sverdlovsk; and Aivars Gipslis, Vladimir Bagirov, David Bronstein, and Janis Klovans qualified from Alma-Ata. Four invitations were also granted to four former Soviet champions: Mark Taimanov, Viktor Korchnoi, Efim Geller, and Yuri Averbakh. The evenly matched field saw a three-way tie for first by the final, which was followed by two playoff rounds that saw Leonid Stein emerge as the champion. It was the first of what would be three Soviet crowns, and it signaled his arrival as one of the world's best players.

Ratmir Dmitrievich Kholmov (Russian: אעלטנ לטענטוגטק מכלמג, Lithuanian: Ratmir Cholmovas, German: Ratmir Cholmow) (13 May 1925 in Shenkursk – 18 February 2006 in Moscow) was a Russian chess Grandmaster. He won many international tournaments in Eastern Europe during his career, and tied for the Soviet Championship title in 1963, but lost the playoff. Kholmov was not well known in the West, since he never competed there during his career peak, being confined to events in socialist countries. His chess results were impressive, so this may have been for security reasons, as Kholmov had been a wartime sailor. But he was one of the strongest Soviet players from the mid-1950s well into the 1970s, and was ranked as high as No. 8 in the world by Chessmetrics.com from August 1960 to March 1961. Kholmov stayed active in competitive chess right to the end of his life, and maintained a high standard.

Vladimir Bagirov (Baku, August 16, 1936 – Finland, July 21, 2000) was a Soviet-Latvian grandmaster of chess, chess author, and trainer. He played in ten USSR Championships, with his best result being fourth place in his debut in 1960. Bagirov was World Senior Champion in 1998. He died of a heart attack while playing a tournament game.


Some light sunning to edges else a very good copy.