optimal play: This is the second game in the match between Charles Marshall Fisher and Robert Smith played 1873 in Sydney.
6...Bg7 was a novelty by Smith.
<KWRegan> tried this against Lombardy in the 1974 US Open Lombardy vs K Regan, 1974
8.hxg8=Q+ Compare 8.Nf3
<The key move of a defence recently invented by Mr. Smith. The "Fianchetto" like the majority of close openings, has never been thoroughly analysed by chess authors, who at this point give White a winning game. [...]>*
<This strikes us as being premature. We prefer B to K Kt 5>**
<A fine move, quite characteristic of Mr. Smith's brilliant style>*
<Probably his best play. Had he taken the proffered rook, many beautiful and complicated variations would have resulted; the following seems the most likely one to occur:- 13. Q takes R ; B to Q 4 ; 14. Q takes P ; Kt to B 3 ; 15. Q to R 4 ; R to R 8 ; 16. K to B sq ; P to K 3 ;
followed by Q to R 5 , and Black has a winning attack.>*
compare 13.Qxa8 played in the following game almost 100 years later...
Anatoly Shmit vs Alvis Vitolinsh 1/2-1/2 USSR 1969 (B00) ... 13. Qxa8 Bd5 14. Qxa7 Nc6 15. Qa4 Rh1 16. Kf1 Nxd4 17. Bc4 e6 18. Bxd5 exd5 19. Bf4 Qh4 20. Qa8+ Kh7 21. Qxd5 Qh3+ 22. Qg2 Rxg1+ 23. Kxg1 Ne2+ 24. Kf1 Qxg2+ 25. Kxg2 Nxf4+ 26. Kf3 Bxb2 27. Kxf4 Bxa1 28. c3 Bb2 29. Ke3 Bc1+ 1/2-1/2
<A feeble move which isolates a pawn. Being the "exchange" ahead, Mr. Smith seems too anxious to reduce the number of pieces; he could now have improved his position by playing K to B sq>*
<Black being superior in force, wisely compels exchanges>**
Further to the contradicting comments from the two newspaper chess columnists about move 19, Houdini prefers Bxd4
<Black remains with the advantage of the exchange, and without any inferiority of position>**
<Surely the valuable Q B P was worth defending by playing B to K sq>*
<B to K sq, defending the P, followed by P to R 4, appears to us the correct method of pursuing the game>**
Houdini agrees that 24...Be8 is the best move.
<B to K 7 would have been more to the point>*
<B to K 7 would have speedily determined the game in Black's favour>**
Despite the agreement of both newspapers chess writers about move 29, Houdini prefers Ng6
<An obvious oversight; he should of course have played K to his 2>*
<He should have been satisfied with a draw, and played K to K 2. The move made loses a Pawn>**
<Black's game is in a bad way; he should now take Kt with B, and then bring up the K to face the terrible pawns>*
<White's pawns are now very formidable>**
The finish:- 51...Rc8 52.Kd4 Rd8 53.Kc5 a4 54.d6 etc
After two games, Fisher and Smith each have one win.
The winner of the match to be the first player to seven wins (draws not counting).
*Australian Town and Country Journal (Sydney, NSW) issue Saturday 4 October 1873 page 21
**The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic.) issue Saturday 4 October 1873 page 12