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26th Chess Olympiad

The 26th Chess Olympiad, organized by FIDE and comprising an open and a women's tournament, as well as several other events designed to promote the game of chess, took place between November 18 and December 5, 1984, in Thessaloniki, Greece.

In the home country of the Olympic movement, it was business as usual. The Soviet Union, led by Beliavsky, won their third consecutive gold medals (and 15th in total), well ahead of England (helped by a Nunn in top form) and the United States. This dominance happened even in the absence of Karpov and Kasparov who were in the midst of their marathon match. In fact, for the first time in Olympic history, the Soviet team didn't feature a single world champion - past, present or future.

The only champion present in Thessaloniki was Boris Spassky who had defected and now represented France. His performance helped the French team to an unprecedented 7th place finish, even though he drew 12 of his 14 games - an Olympic record.

After the successful 26th Olympiad in Thessaloniki in 1984, FIDE agreed to hold every other Olympiad (the ones in Olympic years) in the home country of the Olympic movement - provided the Greek Chess Federation and government could provide the necessary funding. This was only the case once, in 1986; after that the Olympiad went back to a new host city every two years.

Open event

There were 87 nations playing in a 14-round Swiss system tournament. To make for an even number of teams, the Greek hosts also fielded a "B" team. In the event of a draw, the tie-break was decided first by using the Buchholz system, then by match points.

Open event
# Country Players Average
rating
Points
1 Soviet Union Beliavsky, Polugaevsky, Vaganian, Tukmakov, Yusupov, Sokolov 2610 41
2 England Miles, Nunn, Speelman, Chandler, Mestel, Short 2556 37
3 United States Dzindzichashvili, Kavalek, Christiansen, Browne, Alburt, De Firmian 2553 35
# Country Average
rating
Points Buchholz
4 Hungary 2596 34½
5 Romania 2470 33
6 West Germany 2516 32½ 445.0
7 France 2485 32½ 442.0
8 Yugoslavia 2561 32 457.5
9 Bulgaria 2470 32 447.5
10 Netherlands 2574 32 446.0
11 Cuba 2473 32 444.5
12 China 2433 32 429.0
13 Israel 2468 32 425.5
14 Argentina 2401 32 423.5
15 Iceland 2514 31½ 450.0
16 Philippines 2426 31½ 425.0
17 Czechoslovakia 2555 31 435.0
18 Denmark 2458 31 420.5
19 Brazil 2410 31 418.5
20 Canada 2423 31 412.0
21 Poland 2449 30½ 418.0
22 Australia 2426 30½ 416.0
23 Chile 2423 30½ 412.0
24 Scotland 2325 30½ 403.0
25 Sweden 2503 30 454.5
26 Colombia 2409 30 431.0
27 Spain 2451 30 430.5
28 Italy 2406 30 421.0
29 Indonesia 2398 30 413.0
30 Norway 2438 30 411.5
31 Greece 2399 30 408.0
32 Portugal 2349 30 407.5
33 India 2409 29½ 420.0
34 Turkey 2365 29½ 396.0
35 United Arab Emirates 2286 29½ 389.5
36 Wales 2313 29½ 382.0
37 Morocco 2200 29½ 364.0
38 Austria 2380 29 416.5
39 Finland 2438 29 416.0
40 Belgium 2324 29 414.5
41 Albania 2333 29 410.0
42 Singapore 2324 29 407.0
43 Mexico 2330 29 402.0
44 New Zealand 2293 29 392.0
45 Greece "B" 2318 29 379.0
46 Egypt 2249 28½ 403.0
47 Dominican Republic 2291 28½ 396.5
48 Tunisia 2278 28
49 Switzerland 2385 27½ 412.5
50 Malaysia 2285 27½ 401.0
51 Sri Lanka 2283 27½ 392.5
52 Puerto Rico 2236 27½ 380.5
53 Pakistan 2255 27 388.5
54 Hong Kong 2274 27 375.5
55 Iraq 2200 27 367.0
56 Ireland 2230 26½ 395.5
57 Paraguay 2275 26½ 392.5
58 Algeria 2201 26½ 384.5
59 Cyprus 2226 26½ 368.5
60 Uganda 2203 26½ 332.5
61 Thailand 2271 26 389.5
62 Bangladesh 2280 26 388.5
63 Faroe Islands 2229 26 382.5
64 Andorra 2203 26 370.0
65 Malta 2230 26 364.0
66 Lebanon 2226 26 362.5
67 Honduras 2200 26 355.5
68 Luxembourg 2215 25½ 373.0
69 Bahrain 2201 25½ 314.0
70 Zimbabwe 2234 25 383.0
71 Trinidad and Tobago 2203 25 368.0
72 Nigeria 2201 25 355.0
73 Suriname 2200 25 346.5
74 Libya 2200 25 326.0
75 Kenya 2201 25 324.5
76 Jordan 2203 24½ 351.5
77 Jamaica 2205 24½ 333.0
78 Angola 2200 24 355.5
79 Guernsey and Jersey 2201 24 352.0
80 British Virgin Islands 2218 24 342.0
81 Papua New Guinea 2203 24 331.5
82 Japan 2200 23½
83 United States Virgin Islands 2215 21½
84 Monaco 2201 21
85 Bermuda 2208 17½
86 Mali 2200 17
87 San Marino 2200 16
88 Palestine 2200 13

Individual medals

For the first time, in addition to the performance awards on each board, a special award was given to the best overall performance rating.

Women's results

50 nations took part, and with the Greek hosts also fielding a "B" side, the total number of teams came to 51. In the event of a draw, the tie-break was decided first by using the Buchholz system, then by match points.

Like the open event, the women's tournament was dominated by the Soviet Union, captained by world champion Chiburdanidze, who won the gold medals by an impressive 5½ points. Bulgaria and Romania took silver and bronze, respectively.

# Country Players Average
rating
Points
1 Soviet Union Chiburdanidze, Levitina, Gaprindashvili, Semenova 2335 32
2 Bulgaria Voiska, Gocheva, Chilingirova, Savova 2105 27½
3 Romania Mureşan, Polihroniade, Nuţu, Olăraşu 2180 27
# Country Average
rating
Points Buchholz
4 West Germany 2232 26 340.5
5 China 2098 26 335.0
6 Hungary 2218 25
7 Poland 2227 24½ 345.5
8 England 2137 24½ 336.0
9 Yugoslavia 2162 24 340.5
10 Spain 2055 24 330.0
11 Netherlands 2075 23½ 346.5
12 Switzerland 2072 23½ 316.5
13 United States 2077 23½ 316.0
14 Cuba 2092 23½ 303.0
15 Sweden 2143 23
16 India 2018 22½
17 Canada 2020 22 316.5
18 France 1985 22 308.5
19 Brazil 1963 22 303.5
20 Scotland 1908 22 299.5
21 Portugal 1800 22 250.0
22 Colombia 1913 21½ 311.0
23 Wales 1953 21½ 301.5
24 Denmark 1855 21½ 288.0
25 Dominican Republic 1800 21½ 257.5
26 Norway 1800 21½ 244.5
27 Greece 1988 21 316.5
28 Iceland 1873 21 301.5
29 Italy 1903 21 292.5
30 Austria 1893 21 283.5
31 Finland 1900 21 281.0
32 Malaysia 1800 21 260.5
33 Indonesia 1855 20½ 300.5
34 Australia 1927 20½ 296.0
35 Argentina 1955 20½ 292.0
36 Greece "B" 1853 20½ 269.5
37 Belgium 1800 20½ 267.0
38 Ireland 1800 20½ 245.0
39 Mexico 1820 20 286.0
40 New Zealand 1803 20 226.5
41 Japan 1915 19½ 274.5
42 Turkey 1892 19½ 265.0
43 Iraq 1800 19½ 218.0
44 Egypt 1828 18½ 268.5
45 Guatemala 1800 18½ 253.0
46 United Arab Emirates 1800 16½
47 Hong Kong 1800 15½
48 Trinidad and Tobago 1835 15
49 Jamaica 1800 10
50 Zimbabwe 1800
51 United States Virgin Islands 1800

Individual medals

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