Born in Sankt Petersburg (at that time Leningrad) 23 March 1931, Korchnoi was a reference in chess for many years. He was a candidate for the World Championship on ten occasions (1962, 1968, 1971, 1974, 1977, 1980, 1983, 1985, 1988 and 1991), thus becoming one of the strongest players to have never won a World Championship. At least not in this format of the event, as he eventually became World Senior Champion in 2006.
Viktor Korchnoi has a myriad of titles with the Soviet Union. Korchnoi is a four-time USSR chess champion, a five-time member of Soviet teams that won the European championship, and a six-time member of Soviet teams that won the Chess Olympiad. Korchnoi defected to the Netherlands in 1976 and later moved to Switzerland where he stayed and played until his final day. As a Swiss citizen he played his two World Championship finals with Karpov in 1978 and 1981. From that matches Korchnoi holds the record for the longest World Championship game.
Korchnoi was the oldest active chess Grandmaster for many years and won the Swiss national championships in 2009 and 2011 at age 78 and 80 respectively.
RIP Viktor Korchnoi, thank you for all the great chess!
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Viktor Korchnoi in recent years
Korchnoi and Ulhmann rapid match in 2015 / (Long) interview with Viktor Korchnoi in 2012 (RUS) / Korchnoi guest of honor and simul at the London Chess Classic / Korchnoi in San Sebastian – playing and book signing (2011) / Viktor Korchnoi wins the Botvinnik Memorial in 2011 / Korchnoi on board 1 for Switzerland in EICC 2011