Although chess arrived in Serbia much earlier, modern times have brought the development and progress of this game to our country. The influence of the first grandmaster Bora Kostić between two world wars marked a significant step forward in popularizing of chess in the region. To further the expansion of chess in the postwar years, the Chess Association of Serbia was founded on September 19, 1948, marking the beginning of a golden age for chess in our region.
Serbia was organizer and host to several exceptional chess events, including the radio match Yugoslavia – USA in 1950, the Candidates Tournament in 1959, the Match of the Century (USSR – Rest of the World) in 1970, the final match of candidates for the world champion between Korchnoi and Spaski in 1978, the GMA-JAT in 1988 (an open tournament featuring 100 grandmasters, a historic first in chess history), the Olympics in Novi Sad in 1990, and the rematch of the century between Fischer and Spassky in 1992.
More recently, in 2022, we hosted the FIDE Grand Prix tournament as part of the battle for the world champion title, and in 2023, we organized the First Chess Paralympics in history and the European Individual Chess Championship in Vrnjačka Banja.
During the golden period (from 1950 to 1980), our chess players won 13 Olympic medals, and were six-time vice-champions at the European Team Championships. Female chess players also made their mark, winning two Olympic medals – silver in 1963 and bronze in 1988. In individual competitions, Serbian chess masters achieved remarkable results. Svetozar Gligorić was considered one of the world’s top chess players outside the Soviet Union by the end of the 1950s, while Ljubomir Ljubojević held the same distinction in 1983. In 1992 Alisa Marić played a match to become a challenger for the world champion title.
In 1966, Serbia launched the Chess Informer and introduced a universal chess language of symbols, making a significant contribution to the study of chess theory and the global development of the game.
Expert collaboration: Chess Federation of Serbia
Artistic realization of the issue: MA Jakša Vlahović, academic graphic artist