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Robert James Fischer vs Robert Eugene Byrne
New York ch-US (1965)  ·  French Defense: Tarrasch Variation. Guimard Defense (C03)  ·  0-1
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Given 18 times; par: 68 [what's this?]

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sac: 34...Rxf3 PGN: download | view | print Help: general | java-troubleshooting

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Kibitzer's Corner
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Mar-11-11  JohnBoy: <goodevans: ... did he really give up all three Q-side pawns in the hope that Byrne would fall for 30 ... Re1? I can't see any other reason for 28 Rc1.> After black's 27...Qc2 Byrne threatens ...Rxf2. White is really hog-tied. It looks to me as if 28.Rc1 is a way to get the rook into the game and maybe get some play.
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  perfidious: < Call me Ishmael: <The odd thing is that Fischer apparently HAD seen Bd6 a move earlier> How do you know what Fischer saw?>

To a degree (very much dependent on circumstances), one can infer what Fischer, or another strong player, might have seen. <Petrosianic> is more than capable in that respect.

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  Eduardo Bermudez: How many losses had Fischer against the French defense?
Jan-26-13  Shams: <Eduardo Bermudez><How many losses had Fischer against the French defense?>

The home page advanced search functions work quite well!

Looks like 6 classical losses, 1 blitz and 10 simul. Just look how many of them were Winawers. Instead of that nonsense about the human touch, Fischer's last words should have been, "Fine-- the Winawer is sound. There, I said it."

Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: Our database gives 17, but ten of those were from simuls and one from a blitz tournament:

In all, I make his record against the French to be +33 -17 =15, or 62%. Discarding simul and blitz games, it comes to +20 -6 =6, or 72%. His overall record with White was 74%, so the French was no panacea even if he did lose some horrible games against it.

It may seem from these numbers that the French was a good weapon against him in simuls, but remember that games preserved from those events are mainly losses by the simul giver. Fischer's record against any opening would improve with the simul games omitted.

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  RookFile: I think that some praise of Byrne is in order for his play in this game. 3...Nc6 was a shrewd choice, and he almost certainly had the whole ...Bd6 business worked out when he played 8..... Nf6! A more typical French arrangement would have been 8..... Bd6 with the idea of 8....Nge7. If Byrne didn't have the little trick he played, it's not hard to see him getting into trouble - it certainly appeared on move 8 that he would have problems castling after 8..... Nf6. Finally, it's one thing to win the exchange against Fischer, but another to win the game - here Byrne showed excellent technique.
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  kingscrusher: RIP Robert Byrne

I have video annotated this game here:

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  kdogphs: What a wonderful game! An American legend for sure, RIP
Jun-06-14  Conrad93: I have never faced 3...Nc6!? in the French before.

Looks dubious.

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  TheFocus: I think this was the only time Fischer played the Tarrasch Variation.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: In tournament play, that is. he may have used it in simuls.
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  perfidious: <TheFocus> It was indeed Fischer's only serious venture with 3.Nd2.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: That happens though. I once had a great attacking miniature with a new variation OTB.

in postal, I was mercilessly beaten when I tried it again and never played that variation again.

Jun-06-14  Conrad93: <That happens though. I once had a great attacking miniature with a new variation OTB. in postal, I was mercilessly beaten when I tried it again and never played that variation again.?>

What variation was that?

Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: Torre Attack: Curry Variation
Jun-07-14  Wyatt Gwyon: I play the Guimard a lot with black. Really fun variation with great practical chances over the board. A lot of players with white are really caught off guard by it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: <Wyatt Gwyon> And Black seems to get decent results with it, possibly because of the White players' unfamiliarity with it. Here is a link to links with some statistics: Tabanus chessforum.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: Quite possibly the only Torre Attack I ever lost. I cannot remember any other loss with it.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <TheFocus> Ah lahke curry!
Jun-07-14  Conrad93: <I play the Guimard a lot with black. Really fun variation with great practical chances over the board. A lot of players with white are really caught off guard by it.>

I don't get why. It's basically a French without the pesky c5 pawn push, which should be a huge plus for white.

Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <Conrad> One point of the Guimard is that it usually becomes much more of an open game than normal French lines. Much sharper. More tactics. More of a slugfest. Chances for Black are pretty good.

Of course, it can also lead to a wholesale of exchanges, with a draw.

I suggest you try it against a computer.

I played it in blitz, but never in regular tournaments.

Jun-07-14  Conrad93: I guess you're right.

I have three books on the French, and none of them mention this defense.

Another annoying variation, which looks absolutely wrong:

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Bd3

click for larger view

It has a nice little trap:

4...dxe4! 5. Bxe4 Nf6 6. Bd3 Qxd4??
7. Bb5+ loses the queen.

click for larger view

I have even seen 2000+ rated players fall for this.

Jun-07-14  Conrad93: Apparently black can just play 6...c5, but it it still an underestimated opening.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: On the topic of sharp play, 4.c3 has some tactical points, as shown by Keres vs Botvinnik, 1955, but 4.Ngf3 Nf6 5.e5 is considered stronger. One suspects that Fischer had something in mind when venturing into this mess, but this was certainly not his day.
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  HeMateMe: The Byrne brothers had a combined one victory against Fischer, this game.
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