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D Byrne 
Donald Byrne
Number of games in database: 266
Years covered: 1946 to 1973
Overall record: +89 -74 =103 (52.8%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games
      Based on games in the database; may be incomplete.

With the White pieces:
 English (43) 
    A15 A10 A16 A12 A14
 English, 1 c4 c5 (20) 
    A36 A37 A38
 English, 1 c4 e5 (14) 
    A21 A20 A26 A22 A23
 Uncommon Opening (10) 
 King's Indian (8) 
    E60 E97 E62 E66 E61
 King's Indian Attack (7) 
    A07 A08
With the Black pieces:
 Sicilian (46) 
    B77 B27 B72 B76 B71
 Sicilian Dragon (32) 
    B77 B76 B71 B72 B70
 Grunfeld (28) 
    D91 D94 D82 D90 D85
 King's Indian (14) 
    E60 E66 E64 E94 E88
 English (9) 
    A16 A15
 King's Indian Attack (4) 
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Najdorf vs D Byrne, 1962 0-1
   D Byrne vs Fischer, 1958 1/2-1/2
   D Byrne vs Reshevsky, 1956 1-0
   R Weinstein vs D Byrne, 1961 0-1
   R Sprague vs D Byrne, 1957 0-1
   Geller vs D Byrne, 1955 0-1
   D Byrne vs Reshevsky, 1954 1/2-1/2

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   56th US Open (1955)
   58th US Open (1957)
   Rosenwald 1954/55 (1954)
   US Championship 1958/59 (1958)
   Third Rosenwald Trophy (1956)
   Vinkovci (1968)
   47th US Open (1946)
   San Antonio (1972)
   US Championship (1966)
   Palma de Mallorca (1968)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   US Championship 1958/59 by suenteus po 147
   1954-55 first Rosenwald tournament by crawfb5
   Trophy Chess by samsloan
   US Championship 1969/70 by suenteus po 147

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(born Jun-12-1930, died Apr-08-1976, 45 years old) United States of America

[what is this?]
Donald Byrne was born in New York. Awarded the IM title in 1962, he was US Open Champion in 1953. Between 1962 and 1972 he played on 5 US Olympiad teams but his greatest over the board success was the defeat of Yuri Averbakh (+3, =0, -1) in the 1954 USA versus USSR match played in Moscow. He was the younger brother of Robert Eugene Byrne. A professor at Pennsylvania State University, he died of lupus at age 45.

Wikipedia article: Donald Byrne

 page 1 of 11; games 1-25 of 266  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves Year Event/LocaleOpening
1. Bisguier vs D Byrne  1-035 1946 47th US OpenC71 Ruy Lopez
2. D Byrne vs F Yerhoff  1-034 1946 47th US OpenE11 Bogo-Indian Defense
3. F Yerhoff vs D Byrne  ½-½21 1946 47th US OpenB07 Pirc
4. D Byrne vs H Fajans  1-040 1946 47th US OpenD81 Grunfeld, Russian Variation
5. D Byrne vs K Forster  ½-½41 1946 47th US OpenE14 Queen's Indian
6. H Fajans vs D Byrne  ½-½21 1946 47th US OpenD83 Grunfeld, Grunfeld Gambit
7. D Byrne vs W Shipman  ½-½61 1946 47th US OpenD57 Queen's Gambit Declined, Lasker Defense
8. D Byrne vs W Grossman  1-039 1946 47th US OpenD13 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav, Exchange Variation
9. H Steiner vs D Byrne  ½-½59 1946 47th US OpenD37 Queen's Gambit Declined
10. D Byrne vs H Steiner  ½-½33 1946 47th US OpenA51 Budapest Gambit
11. O Ulvestad vs D Byrne  ½-½28 1946 47th US OpenA15 English
12. D Sibbett vs D Byrne  0-171 1946 47th US OpenC50 Giuoco Piano
13. D Byrne vs G Katz 1-042 1946 47th US OpenA52 Budapest Gambit
14. G Katz vs D Byrne  ½-½30 1946 47th US OpenD82 Grunfeld, 4.Bf4
15. D Byrne vs Seidman  ½-½34 1946 47th US OpenD81 Grunfeld, Russian Variation
16. Kupchik vs D Byrne  1-040 1946 47th US OpenC41 Philidor Defense
17. D Byrne vs Seidman  1-047 1946 47th US OpenE14 Queen's Indian
18. M Luckis vs D Byrne  1-037 1947 La Plata-New York radio mE94 King's Indian, Orthodox
19. Robert E Byrne vs D Byrne 1-015 1949 New YorkC31 King's Gambit Declined, Falkbeer Counter Gambit
20. J Sherwin vs D Byrne  ½-½36 1952 53rd US OpenB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
21. D Byrne vs H Steiner  ½-½28 1952 53rd US OpenA06 Reti Opening
22. D Fischheimer vs D Byrne  0-131 1952 53rd US OpenD31 Queen's Gambit Declined
23. D Byrne vs J F Donovan  1-033 1952 53rd US OpenA07 King's Indian Attack
24. D Byrne vs C Pilnick  ½-½52 1952 US OpenA05 Reti Opening
25. D Byrne vs A Pomar-Salamanca  ½-½46 1952 US OpenA04 Reti Opening
 page 1 of 11; games 1-25 of 266  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Byrne wins | Byrne loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Calli: John Collins in My Seven Chess Prodigies wrote about the early years of the Byrnes in Brooklyn, but I don't know if the book is available. The seven were Fischer, Lombardy, the Byrne Bros, R. Weinstein, Sal Matera and another kid ,Lewis Cohen, who, I guess, did not pursue chess.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: <Chessical> Thanks for the explanation. It's a pity because Bryne might have gone a great deal further than he did.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Knight13: Without Mr. Byrne the Game of the Century, D Byrne vs Fischer, 1956, might not have existed. (No kibizing for over a year!!??)
Jun-12-06  BIDMONFA: Donald Byrne

BYRNE, Donald

Premium Chessgames Member
  RookFile: He was a good player who had a lot of clever ideas.
Aug-26-06  WTHarvey: Here are some critical positions from his games:
Nov-18-06  GrandPatzerSCL: 1981, huh??
Premium Chessgames Member
  Caissanist: The 1980 and 1981 games are almost certainly from Robert Byrne; he played in all three of the mentioned tournaments. I have submitted this as a correction suggestion.
Premium Chessgames Member
  IMlday: Before there were World Opens the big July 1-4th tournament was the Atlantic Open in New York. In '68 D. Byrne and I shared first at 7-1 although he won our individual game. He was the US Captain for the '68 Olympiad but Fischer quit at the last minute and Donald was conscripted to play.
Jun-12-07  timhortons: donald happy birthday...chess world owes a lot to you....youre name well be etched in the chess books for generations to come
Premium Chessgames Member
  Once: It is a little cruel of fate that for most of us Donald Byrne belongs to the "Washington Generals" club of players who are more famous for losing than winning. This is a shame because he played some fine chess. Strange that he had such an aversion to 1.e4 and 2...e5 though...
Jun-12-09  WhiteRook48: a little cruel that he's only known for "The Game of the Century"
Jun-12-09  Tessie Tura: <a little cruel that he's only known for "The Game of the Century">

If you're going to suffer a famous loss in an immortal game to a kid, it might as well be Fischer.

A family member of mine had lupus and it's a terrible, debilitating disease. Flannery O'Connor had it and died at a younger age than Byrne.

Jun-12-09  HeMateMe: Didn't he die of lung cancer? Thats how I read about it years ago, he was a chain smoker at a very young age.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Caissanist: While he was in fact a heavy smoker, his obituary in Chess Life said it was Lupus. He suffered from that disease for about the last 15 years of his life.

If you look at chessmetrics he seems to have been as good as his brother, or perhaps a bit better, until he got sick.

Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: Donald Byrne, a strong American amateur and coach of the 1950 and '60s, recommended that players always think about their ositions mentally when away from the board. In this way you often "see" a move that your mind blocked out when you last examined the position with your eyes.

(Source: The Inner Game of Chess by Andy Soltis)

Premium Chessgames Member
  talisman: happy birthday donald.
Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: 1969 U.S. Chess Championship:

Donald Byrne, the gentleman chess master, played under duress; as an associate professor of English Literature at Penn State, he was seen grading papers during the tournament.


Jun-12-12  ketchuplover: RIP!!
Premium Chessgames Member
  talisman: happy birthday donald.
Jun-12-12  SimonWebbsTiger: I see the Seirawan story of brotherly love hasn't made the page yet! Well, good reason.

Donald was playing Robert. Donald was in bad time trouble and in bad need of the washroom. Robert had ample time to let Donald go. But Robert said to Donald: " You s___ on your own time!"

Jun-12-12  LoveThatJoker: IM Donald Byrne, today you are remembered!


Jun-12-12  HeMateMe: Most famous for a game he had with Fischer.
Jun-12-13  brankat: R.I.P. Mr.Byrne.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: R.I.P. Donald Byrne, probably most famous for being on the wrong side of a famous game.
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