Boris Spassky was born in Leningrad, USSR. He became world junior champion in 1955 and went on to capture the crown from Petrosian. Spassky reigned as world champion from 1969-72. His dramatic match with Fischer at Reykjavik in 1972 captured headlines all over the globe. Spassky disobeyed orders to return home and sportingly continued playing after he amassed a two-point lead when Fischer failed to show up for their second game. However, Spassky could not withstand Fischer`s fierce onslaught and although he fought valiantly, lost his title. Soviet authorities punished him for losing to an American. He eventually moved to France to play on their Olympic team. In 1992 he again faced Fischer for a record purse of $5 million and again he lost.