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Sidney Bernstein vs Robert James Fischer
United States Championship (1957/58), New York, NY USA, rd 4, Dec-22
Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation. Main Line (B99)  ·  0-1



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Kibitzer's Corner
Sep-10-04  wall: 35.h4 allows 35...Rh3, winning the pawn. Perhaps 35.Kb1 or 35.Bb5 or 35.Rd1.

After 44.Rf3, White resigned. I guess the final moves would be 44.Rf3 Rc7 45.Re1 a4 and Black breaks through.

Sep-11-04  Nomen Nescio: Why did white throw away that knight?
Feb-19-05  aw1988: <NN> They are called 'sacrifices'.

By the way, nice name.

Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: Here is a technicality (sp?) question. Would it be called sacrifice only if you win?
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: Yup. If you lose it's called a "blunder."
Aug-18-05  RookFile: Well, let's be fair. Berntein had an
idea, and Bobby was forced to play
his king out to h6, and saw that it was ok. This doesn't happen every day of the week, it might have been good. It just turned out to not work, not like Bernstein was an idiot or something.
Nov-11-05  Chess Addict: Kf8!
Is there something wrong with castling?
Nov-11-05  zhentil: <Chessaddict> It drops the bishop.
Nov-11-05  Chess Addict: Oh, thank you.
Nov-11-05  Koster: The real question is why he sacrificed and then traded queens. Maybe the game was prearranged.
Nov-23-06  Stellar King: 21...Kh6(?) What is wrong with 21...Kf8 or 21...Kg6(???). Somebody please explain it to me in detail.
Nov-23-06  thegreatzidane: <21...Kh6(?) What is wrong with 21...Kf8 or 21...Kg6(???). Somebody please explain it to me in detail.> 21...Kg6 loses immediately. 22. Qf2 and black king is in great danger.
Nov-23-06  thegreatzidane: Well, I am not a very good player, so maybe there is some mistake in my explanation. From what I see, 21...Kh6 is the best move and gives black the best winning chances. Kh6 forces 22. Qc4 and after 22...Nd7, White will be force to trade queens otherwise neither placing his queen at c6 nor b3 will help him. After trading queens, black will have the advantage due to the extra piece. Correct me if there are any mistakes. Thanks.
Nov-24-06  Eyal: <Stellar King> With 20...Bf5 black threatens mate by Nb3+, so the big question for white is if he can parry this threat and continue his attack at the same time, and 21...Kh6 is the only move that doesn't allow him to do that. As <thegreatzidane> pointed out, 21...Kg6 loses to 22.Qf2. 21...Kf8 is better, but still allows white to continue the attack with 22.Rxe8+ Kxe8 23.Qe3+ Kf8 24.Bh3; after 24...Bxh3 (not 24...Qd7? 25.Bxf5 Qxf5 26.Re1 Bxf6 27.Qe8+ Kg7 28.Bxf6+ Qxf6 29.Rg1+ Kh6 30.Qe3) 25.Qxh3 (or 25.Bg5 h5 26.Qxh3) black is probably still winning, but his position is much less comfortable than in the game. BTW, thanks for drawing my attention to this game - I'm thinking of putting together a collection of games that feature an accurate and cool-headed defense under pressure, and this one (like many others by Fischer!) is a good candidate.
Jul-09-07  TaxiDriver: Kf8 and then later Kh6 I love it. This game is full of tactics only Bobby could come up with, and in his teens too!
Aug-19-08  rcbuenaobra17: No doubt Bobby knows what he's doing.
Kh6! starts white's attack.
Aug-19-08  rcbuenaobra17: I think 24.Re7 is better for white and if black did not capture the rook white can double the rook on the e-file with good winning chances.If 24...Rxe7 25.Pxe7 and white can continue 26.Bf1...a5 then Bb5 with good prospects. Correct me if I'm wrong.
Premium Chessgames Member
  kingfu: Let us look at the "sacrifice" 13 Nd5. Fischer had to defend for many moves. White got to have FUN. Black got the win eventually. This is why we like sacrifices. This is why Tal was alive. Although, most of Tal's sacrifices really worked!
Mar-03-12  screwdriver: When ever I hang a piece, I try to tell everyone it was a "sacrifice".
Mar-03-12  whithaw: White's Nd5, allowing the knight to be captured, is a common theme in certain lines of the sicilian, where a black pawn resides on e6. It can be quite strong if timed correctly, and the move can sometimes be played even if black's king is castled. In this game, Fischer saw that white's attack fizzles out, leaving black up material.

No less than Tal has played Nd5 (in key games against strong opponents.) For reference, Look at Tal-Larsen 1965, Bled. Tal obtained a great attack that was very difficult to defend.

Apr-26-12  screwdriver: <whithaw> Thanks for the explanation. Obviously I wasn't very aware of the Nd5 sacrifice at the time of my comment on March 3rd. Fischer really had to find resources to defend the position. I don't think I'd have survived the attack.
Dec-30-13  RandomVisitor: After 13.Nd5

click for larger view

Rybka 4.1 x64:

<[-0.36] d=25 13...exd5 14.exd5 Kf8 15.Nc6> Re8 16.Bxf6 Nxf6 17.g5 Nd7 18.Nxb4 h6 19.h4 Nb6 20.Rd3 hxg5 21.hxg5 Qc4 22.a3 Qb5 23.Bf1 Qc5 24.Bg2 Bd8 25.Rxe8+ Kxe8 26.Nc6 Bxc6 27.b4 Qg1+ 28.Rd1 Qxd1+

Premium Chessgames Member
  juan31: Que defensa de negras !!!, obviamente sólo el Gran Maestro Internacional de Ajedrez Robert James Fischer puede hacer una defensa de ese calibre.
Premium Chessgames Member
  harrylime: Bobby could play back in the 50's lol lol
Mar-12-21  DansChessLounge: Great game by the young Fischer! For video analysis move by move, check out the video --->

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