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Robert James Fischer vs Henry Gross
57th US Open (1956), Oklahoma City, OK USA, rd 2, Jul-17
Zukertort Opening: Symmetrical Variation (A04)  ·  1/2-1/2


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Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-27-04  wall: Maybe 14...Qf6 instead of the drawish 14...Rad8. I guess after 17.Rxd8+ Qxd8 18.Qd3 and the queens exchange for it to be more drawish.
Feb-09-12  cimatar: I read the article "The Wanderer" and Gross is Fischer's friend. Maybe that is the reason behind this short draw.
Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: This game was played in the second round and Fischer had won his first round game. He eventually finished 8.5/12 to tie for 4-8 behind co-winners Arthur Bisguier and James Sherwin at 9.5/12. Henry Gross finished at 8.0/12 to tie for 9-15 so he was no slouch. Who knows why he wasn't more aggressive, although I suspect that at that time Gross' rating was much higher then Fischer's since according to Wikipedia (, Fischer's rating in May 1956 was 1726 and this tournament was held in July 1956.

Thanks to <Phony Benoni> for compiling the list of competitors in the 1956 US Open Championship.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <AylerKupp> The USCF rating list for 1955, published in the May 20, 1956 issue of <Chess Life>, gives these ratings:

Bobby Fischer 1726
Henry Gross 2181

Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: So Fischer probably thought that he was lucky to escape with a draw, even if he was playing White. The -455 ELO rating difference equates to a P(Win) of less than 0.06 for White!
Feb-10-12  Jason Frost: Found this from

<On July he took first place at the U.S. Junior Championship in Philadelphia with eight wins, one draw, and one loss. His U.S.C.F. rating in the event was <1830>. At 13 years and 4 months, he was the youngest player to win the U.S. Junior Championship. A few weeks later he played in the 57th U.S. Open in Oklahoma City, winning 5 games, drawing 7 games and tied for 4th-8th place. On September he tied for 8th place at the Canadian Open in Montreal. >

Although regardless of his rating, I doubt Fischer was of a character to underestimate his own chances or to ever feel <lucky> to draw a game.

Mar-01-14  Meaux: Fischer games are priceless works of art.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheTamale: Henry made quite a name for himself decades later:

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