22nd World Student Team Chess Championship: Mexico City 1977

<< [ Information || Final A | Final B || Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 || Statistics ]


[ Basic data | Tournament review | Individual medals | Interesting games ]

Basic data

22nd World Student Team Chess Championship
(see all-time tournament summary)
Date: 5th - 22nd August 1977
City: Mexico City
Venue: UPIICSA - Instituto Politéchnico Nacional
Head of Organizing Committee: Mr. Willy de Winter (MEX)
Tournament Director: Mr. Carlos Topete (MEX)
Chief Arbiter: IA Jaroslav Šajtar (CSR)
Teams participating: 19
Players participating: 110 (incl. 5 GMs and 4 IMs)
Games played: 504
Competition format: Two stage four board round robin.
Three preliminary groups and two final groups.
Final order decided by: 1. Game points; 2. Match points; 3. Direct match; 4. Berger
Time control: N/A
Downloadable game file: 77studwtch.zip (only ca. 10% of games are in there)
Tournament bulletin: 1977_mexico.pdf (can you help retyping games from it?)
Tournament reports: chess_77.pdf - report from Chess monthly by Isaac Kashdan

Tournament review

Mexico City, the capital of Mexico, was the venue for the 22nd World Chess Team Championship held from August 6 to 22, 1977. These championships have been organized regularly since 1954 by the FIDE, in cooperation with the International Union of Students.

While until 1969 these championships had been held in Europe, there have already been three in Latin America in recent years. In 1971, 16 teams competed for the title of world master in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico. In 1973, the championship was to be held In Ecuador, but due to unforeseen internal problems, Ecuador withdrew its sponsorship three months before the planned date. It was impossible to find another sponsor in such a short time and the 20th jubilee round of the championship was not held that year. A similar situation occurred in 1975, when no member federation of the FIDE offered to organize the event. In 1976, the 21st round of the championships was held in the capital of Venezuela, Caracas, with the participation of 21 teams and a year later in 1977, it was held In Mexico.

The championship was officially opened on August 6, with 18 teams due to take part in this very popular student chess competition. These teams were divided into three preliminary groups. Very fierce competition was expected with, in addition to the three medal winners from Caracas — the USSR, USA and Cuba — very strong teams coming from England, FRG and Canada, none of which had competed in Caracas. Except for Canada, all the favourites won through to the final group.

The course of the competition in the preliminary groups was very smooth. The teams from the USSR, USA, Cuba, Poland, Brazil and Venezuela had already played in the Final Group A in Caracas the previous year. At this championship they were joined by the teams from England, the FRG and Mexico.

Ten teams competed In Final Group B. In addition to nine teams from the preliminary groups, there was the team from Panama, which arrived in Mexico a few days after the start of play in the preliminary groups but was included as the 10th participant in Final Group B following unanimous agreement among the captains of all the participating teams. This explains why the number of participating teams increased by one, after there having been only 18 teams competing in the three preliminary groups.

The competition in the finals was very sharp and the battle for medals was very dramatic. The students of the USSR defended their title of world masters, but three rounds before the end of the tournament they still had the same number of points as the enthusiastic Cubans — 15 out of a possible 20.

The unexpected result 2—2 in the 7th round, in the Cuba-Mexico match, was decisive. In that round, the USSR defeated the USA 3½—½ and went on in the following rounds to defeat Poland 3½—½ and Mexico 3—1. Cuba in the later rounds defeated the FRG 3½—½, but their 2—2 draw with Brazil only confirmed the Soviet students' well-deserved first place. And it is the Soviet students who emerged as the most successful participants out of all the 22 championships. Out of the 21 occasions on which they participated, only in 1954, 1959, 1960 and 1963 did they fail to win. Since 1964, this was for their 11th successive time that they had won the title. (They did not take part in the 1970 championship.)

In Mexico they played 13 games and they emerged victorious in all of them. Besides that, grand masters Vaganian and Beliavsky also obtained the best individual results on the 2nd and 4th chessboard. On the 3rd chessboard the best Individual results were those of the Cuban Fernandéz and Dorfman from the USSR, and on the 1st chessboard, grand master Romanishin (USSR) obtained the second best individual result after Cuban grand master Garcia.

The championship was also a great success for the Cubans. The composition of their team was virtually the same as in Caracas in 1976, where they won the bronze medals. In Mexico, they improved by one place. The silver medals are the greatest success of the Cuban students in these world championships so far. And it is well-merited because their play has reached a considerably higher level. The team included two international grand masters and four international masters. The Cubans played in the student chess championships for the first time in 1962, and finished 15th. In the following years they did not achieve any major successes. It was only in 1972, in Graz, Austria, that they played in the Final Group A and ended in 8th place in this group. By the last two championships, in 1976 and 1977, they had already obtained medals and this is an admirable and praiseworthy success.

The bronze medals went to the English students though they remained six points behind the Cubans. England's team was composed of experienced chess players, all of whom played in April 1977 for England in the finals of the European team championships in Moscow. But here in Mexico, they were defeated by the Cubans, as also were the US chess players, who obtained one point less than the English and came fourth, The students from Poland were placed fifth, which was also a success — it being the best result achieved by the Polish representatives in the entire history of these world championships. The Brazilian students were also successful. But the FRG representatives had been expected to be placed higher. The team from Venezuela defended its position of the previous year.

In Final Group B, the Canadian team emerged victorious, playing only for the second time in the student championships. In 1971, in Mayagüez, the Canadian students had won the bronze medals. The championship was also a success for the students from Ecuador, who came 17th in Caracas. The teams from Colombia and Scotland defended their previous year's positions. Panama ended better, and the results achieved by new-comers Honduras and others correspond to their level of play throughout the tournament.

Thanks to the sportsmanship of all the participants, the 22nd round of this very popular student chess competition went off smoothly and was a complete success.

The championship in Mexico helped to strengthen and consolidate friendly relations among student chess-players throughout the world and was an encouragement to the further successful development of chess, particularly in the Latin American countries.

As has been mentioned above, student chess team championships have been played regularly every year since 1954, with the exception of 1973 and 1975. In an attempt to encourage the development of chess among the broadest sectors of youth, it was decided at the FIDE Congress in 1976 to organize new world championships of four-member youth teams. At the session of the FIDE Presidium in Caracas in 1977 the regulations for this new FIDE youth chess competition were drawn up and approved.

It was also decided that world student chess team championships will continue to be held as before, with the only difference being that in 1978 the first of the new youth team championship will be held, followed by the 23rd student championship in 1979. The competitions will be held regularly in the future — the youth championship every even year and the student championship every odd year.

This new arrangement, if correctly understood and supported by the member unions of FIDE could contribute significantly to the further development of chess among the broadest sectors of youth and students throughout the world.

/ Ing. Jaroslav Šajtar, president of FIdE zone 3 /

The end of the Student Olympiads saga.

Individual medals

bd name flag code fin. pts gms %
1. GM García Gonzáles, Guillermo Cuba CUB A 10 75.0
2. GM Vaganian, Rafael Soviet Union URS A 8 10 80.0
=3. Dorfman, Iosif Soviet Union URS A 11 86.4
=3. IM Fernández, Juan Cuba CUB A 11 86.4
4. GM Beliavsky, Alexander Soviet Union URS A 10 95.0
1 res. Nogueiras, Jesús Cuba CUB A 7 78.6
2 res. GM Makarichev, Sergei Soviet Union URS A 6 91.7

Interesting games

Opening the Queenside was a bit too risky.
Sunyé Neto, Jaime (BRA) - Romanishin, Oleg (URS) 1 - 0

White was easilty outplayed in the mid-game.
Vaganian, Rafael (URS) - Mestel, Jonathan (ENG) 0 - 1

Black awfully ignored Kingside threats.
Palacios, António (VEN) - Commons, Kim (USA) 1 - 0

It is black who is urged to be attacking side in Marshall Gambit.
Fabrega, Bolivar (PAN) - Madden, Andrew (WLS) 1 - 0

A rare case: Nunn blundered a piece on both occasions.
Nunn, John (ENG) - Sznapik, Aleksander (POL) 0 - 1
Sznapik, Aleksander (POL) - Nunn, John (ENG) 1 - 0