Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
His results in the triennial Candidates tournaments, held to determine the challenger to the world champion, showed a steady improvement: 5th at Zürich in 1953; equal 3rd at Amsterdam in 1956; 3rd in Yugoslavia in 1959; 1st at Curaçao in 1962. In 1963 he defeated Mikhail Botvinnik 12.5 - 9.5 to become world chess champion.
Petrosian defended his title in 1966, defeating Boris Spassky 12.5-11.5. In 1969 he was beaten by Spassky 12.5-10.5. In 1968, he was granted an M.Phil. from Yerevan University for his thesis, "Chess Logic."
He was the only player to win a game against Bobby Fischer during the latter's 1971 Candidates matches, finally bringing an end to Fischer's amazing streak of nineteen consecutive wins (6 to finish of the Interzonal, 6 against Taimanov, 6 against Larsen and the first game in their match).
He has two major opening systems named after him: the Petrosian variation of the King's Indian Defence (1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. Nf3 O-O 6. Be2 e5 7. d5) and the Petrosian system in the Queen´s Indian (1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 b6 4. a3).
He is most famous for being one of the best players pioneering the school of prophylaxis, years after Aron Nimzowitsch. Taken from the Greek word prophylaktikos, meaning to guard or prevent beforehand, prophylaxis (or a prophylactic move) stops the opponent from taking action in a certain area for fear of some type of reprisal. Prophylatic moves are aimed at not just improving one's position, but preventing the opponent from improving his. This made Petrosian a master at anticipating and frustrating his opponent's plans. This led many to call his style boring, but this criticism is unfair. His games are now widely used for instruction in chess schools around the world.
- World chess champions by Edward G. Winter , editor. 19981 ISBN 0080249041
- Twelve Great Chess Players and Their Best Games by Irving Chernev; Dover; August 1995. ISBN 0486286746
|World Chess Champion|
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