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Donald Byrne vs Robert James Fischer
"The Game of the Century" (game of the day Mar-09-13)
Third Rosenwald Trophy (1956)  ·  Gruenfeld Defense: Three Knights Variation. Hungarian Attack (D92)  ·  0-1
To move:
Last move:

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Given 188 times; par: 76 [what's this?]

Annotations by Robert Wade.      [1 more game annotated by Wade]

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Donald Byrne vs Robert James Fischer (1956)
Cover of Chess Review, December 1956.

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 52 OF 52 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Apr-12-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  Rookiepawn: <Petrosianic> Very true, and of course it is OK by me to call it a "sac".

The other sacs, the ones in wich material is not forcedly recovered, we can easily recognize them because someone, after hours of analysis and steaming engines, finds a hidden salvation move for the loser. Then the sac is called "unsound"... and controversy starts!

Apr-12-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: What a beautiful thing this game is.
Apr-27-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  dunamisvpm: 15.bxf8 bxf8. White has 3 candidate moves for his Q. 16.Qa4, 16.Qb3, 16.Qc1. If 16.Qa4 white loses a tempo with 16...Nxc3 followed by the threat 17...Re8+ etc
Apr-27-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  dunamisvpm: I think, generally, the reply of black whenever white captures the rook by 15.Bxf8 shall be chronologically 15...Bxf8 followed by 16...Nxc3. Well, I really dunno. Unless someone shows another bright way. GOD bless everyone
Apr-27-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  dunamisvpm: In this game, you will learn more on tactics but no so much about strategy
Apr-27-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  dunamisvpm: Bobby Fischer really lives until now through his games. Imagine, this game, time and again has been of interest to many chess players of all caliber. Try to check the kibitzing dates. Like me, I was thinking of what game to review, I thought of so many great players, but finally I said,I will search a game of Bobby Fischer. His playing style had been and still is the "Gold standard" of chess. GOD bless again and have fun!
Sep-09-14  pawnny: hello everybody,
I don't understand why white king had to go 35.Kg1 and expose himself to check? and why did he continue to 36. Kf1 instead of coming back to Kh2?
Sep-09-14  todicav23: <pawnny: hello everybody,
I don't understand why white king had to go 35.Kg1 and expose himself to check? and why did he continue to 36. Kf1 instead of coming back to Kh2?>
If the king will go back to h2 black will be able to repeat the position achieving a draw.
Sep-09-14  todicav23: I can't believe Bobby lost the queen in only 18 moves.
Sep-09-14  Petrosianic: <todicav23>: <I can't believe Bobby lost the queen in only 18 moves.>

Why not? Did you think there was some kind of rule saying you couldn't sac your queen before Move 20 or something? Believe it or not, they've come even earlier in a game than that.

Oct-02-14  GarloPemberton: if 12.Nxa4 Nxe4 13.Qb4 Nxg5 (and black is up a pawn) if white continues with 14.Nxg5 Bxd1 15.Kxd1 Qxd4+ 16.Qxd4 Bxd4 and white must lose further material
Oct-02-14  GarloPemberton: Bobby Fischer was a baller.
Oct-24-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: <todic: I can't believe Bobby lost the queen in only 18 moves.>

I lost my Queen against Little Chess Partner in 15 moves once. I am proud to be 3 moves faster than Fischer.

Oct-24-14  RookFile: Queen for a king in only 7 moves:

De Legal vs Saint Brie, 1750

Nov-17-14  sharpnova: This game is unimpressive.

11. Bg5 is a move that even a club level player would never play.

I guess chess has come a long way. But should we pretend that garbage from the past is a gem just because of its age?

I guarantee you every single game played between super GM's in the last 20 years has far more strength and beauty than this game.

And don't get me started on Anderssen's Immortal or Morphy's Opera House. These games were nothing but blunders by both sides, with the losing side's blunders being more consistent.

Nov-17-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: 2/10 on the trolling (points deducted for needlessly invoking Anderssen and Morphy).
Nov-17-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <jnpope> Anderssen and Morphy woulda bin jes 2100 players today anyway--probly not even as good as me, and Ah aint played since Ah throwed out mah back plowing the nawth forty one day.
Nov-17-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: You are funny, <sharpnova>.
Nov-17-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: Yes, <RookFile>, but is it legal to give up your Queen, just like that?
Nov-17-14
Premium Chessgames Member
  maxi: And as far as I am concerned it is kind of cheesy to accept all the pieces that are offered to you.
Dec-02-14  yurikvelo: http://pastebin.com/SsuZDqhu

this game multiPV

Dec-02-14  RookFile: <This game is unimpressive.
11. Bg5 is a move that even a club level player would never play.>

Blah blah. It's black to move in this position:


click for larger view

Most of us here would have to admit that we would not play ....Na4 in this position for black. I want to start with this assumption.

The problem is that we need to play some move with black. Assuming we don't see ....Na4, what would we do?

A) ...Nfd7, a typical Gruenfeld move, is out due to pressure on e7. (By amazing coincidence, I think this is what Byrne was thinking).

B) ....Bxf3 cedes the two bishops and strengthens white's center.

C) ...Qd7, to get off the pressure from the g5 bishop, allows Ne5 at some point.

D) ....Nbd7 is laughable because then black would have wasted a tempo with this knight.

I probably would have selected ....Bxf3 and followed up with ....Qd7 and ....e6, trying to put the pawns on white squares to give black a measure of white square control after having ceded the two bishops. Then, somewhere around move 40, it would be 1-0 for Byrne, after a nice positional grind.

Fischer knew it was time for black to go "all in" here.

Dec-13-14  nowo: <Pawnny><todicav23> It doesn't matter what black plays at moves 35 and 36; the evaluation is around -27 and the game is completely lost for black.
Dec-13-14  nowo: <Rookpawn><Petrosianic> Sacrifice - the act of giving up something that you want to keep especially in order to get or do something else or to help someone.

Is this any less a sacrifice than Petrosian's queen sac, for example?: Petrosian vs Pachman, 1961

Dec-13-14  nowo: <Rookfile> <Sharpnova> I agree with Rookfile. Easy for us to play "Monday morning quarterback" and second guess other's moves. However, we seem to forget things like pressure, nerves, stress, fatigue, etc. Playing OTB is completely different than analyzing and criticizing while sitting at our computers. Byrne may have simply been over-confident and thought the kid would crack under the pressure he was applying. He made some mistakes and Bobby made him pay - that's part of chess.
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