optimal play: This is the fourth game in the match between Charles Marshall Fisher and Robert Smith played 1873 in Sydney.
<The moves to this point are the same as in the second game, in which Mr. Fisher now played P to R 5; the move adopted is a decided improvement>*
Compare C M Fisher vs R Smith, 1873
Nevertheless, Fisher won the second game in 51 moves.
<This and the preceding move are Black's best>*
<We prefer K Kt to B 3>**
<This appears to us to lose time; we think he should have played R to Kt sq>**
Quite apart from either Be4 or Rg1 Houdini strongly prefers Nf4!
<White has now to submit to exchanges which weaken his forces without yielding any equivalent in position>**
<White's last two moves were well-timed; here however he commits a sin of omission in not capturing the K P; after that move, Black's defence would soon crumble to pieces>*
<He should have advanced P to Q R 3 at once>**
<This ingenious move is his best play, although it unites the dangerous passed pawns>*
<He should have played K to Q 2>*
<This and White's next move were played with the object of driving Black's King away from White's Pawns>**
<We like B to K 3 better>*
<B to K 3 is stronger>**
<R to K R sq must have given Black an advantage, e.g. 36... R to K R sq ; 37. P to Kt 7 ; R takes B ; 38. P queens ; R takes Q ; 39. R takes R ; R takes P ; And Black is a pawn ahead>*
<All this part of the game is very interesting, and conducted with ability by both players>**
<A ruinous move which loses a game that, with correct play on both sides, should have resulted in a draw>*
<A mistake which loses an otherwise drawn game; it was impossible for Black to win while this Pawn was supported by the Bishop>**
49.a4 would have maintained approximate equality.
After four games, with the race to seven wins, the progressive score was as follows:-
0-1-2-2 (2/4) Charles Marshall Fisher
1-1-1-2 (2/4) Robert Smith
*Australian Town and Country Journal (Sydney, NSW) issue Saturday 18 October 1873 page 21
**The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic.) issue Saturday 18 October 1873 page 12