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Robert James Fischer vs Ulf Andersson
"They'll Do It Every Time" (game of the day Apr-27-2008)
Exhibition game (1970) (exhibition), Siegen FRG, Sep-26
Nimzo-Larsen Attack: Modern Variation (A01)  ·  1-0



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Aug-25-12  csmath: One of the most brilliant games Bobby played.Once the battery was in place the game was won. It is just plain amazing that human comes with something engine never would. But one needs to say that Andersoon, just like Taimanov shuffled pieces aimlessly not knowing how to counter strange setup.
Sep-21-12  nummerzwei: I didn't know these two have played.
Apr-13-13  Wyatt Gwyon: Fischer was just cocky as hell at this point in time, wasn't he? lol.
Apr-13-13  RookFile: It was a wonderful plan involving play on the g file that a lot of grandmasters took note of.
May-07-14  Strelets: 37...gxh5? would've led to a thunderous finish: 38.Qg8+!! Qxg8 39.f7+ Qg7 40.Bxg7#
May-07-14  Strelets: And the same theme works after 38...gxh5?: 39.Qg8+!! Qxg8 40.f7+ Qg7 (40...Ng7 41.fxg8=Q+ Kxg8 42.Rxg7+ Kh8 43.R anywhere on the g-file other than g8# On 40...Nf6, White simply has 41.fxg8=Q#) 41.fxe8=Q Rxe8 42.Bxg7+ Kg8 43.Bxf8+ and White's up a rook and a piece.
Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: <1Tripler:
Maybe he just felt like a day off from mainline theory; more likely he just wanted to get these young players out of the book so they had to think for themselves.>

This game was basically a sicilian
a tempo ahead.

Mar-05-15  jerseybob: xrt999: Your remark is incredibly odd: who cares if Andersson was a GM at this exact moment in time? He was an up and coming young player who soon became a GM, just as Fischer himself had been early in his own career. Bobby obviously didn't feel demeaned by playing him; he fully understood the young man's potential.
Apr-14-15  cunctatorg: This game was a nightmare for Black; Fisher's white pieces seem to have an infinite number of resources...
Oct-01-16  Rookiepawn: <keypusher: <There are a couple of reasons why Fischer played 34 Be5 rather than the flashy 34 Rxf5 & Rg7 and then sacrificing the queen: * There's always the possibility of a mis-calculation. Fischer would be down a queen for a piece if black had a miracle defense. It's true that this would be extremely rare in Fischer's case, but he reasoned, correctly, that he didn't have to take this chance.

*Fischer himself admitted that he liked to "see his opponents squirm". It's almost as if he wanted to win the game as slowly as possible. I wonder if Anderrson actually squirmed after 34 Be5. Here he was, down one exchange, being threatened with another.

Fischer knew that he would eventually win after 34 Be5 without risk.>

Or he just missed the combination. Nah, couldn't be.>

click for larger view

OK, maybe he missed the combination, but to be fair, at this point Black's position is so terrible that there are many ways to win for White. Maybe the way Fischer wins is not so flashy, but it is still very attractive.

Being not a usual opening for Fischer, I think his logical, clear playing is still there. No dubious fuzzy variants, the attack on the K side seems very transparent and even announced... And still Black never finds counterplay.

Dec-24-16  izimbra: Some mention of Fischer vs. Mecking, on the main page, led me to look for games where Fischer played the Nimzo-Larsen as White. There were only a few, and Andersson was the highest level opponent I recognized. This game and the Mecking game are similar in the sense of fitting this description: Fischer has W around 1970 against an opponent he feels he can beat. He decides to go for a plan that will eventually give him a massive attack against the opponent K without any real risk of a loss. If Black played the best opening moves, N-L would probably increase chances of a draw, but it was less well known then and Fischer was playing it against opponents he didn't regard as offensive threats.

In that context, this exhibition game is kind of cool to see how Fischer puts on a caveman attack against a strong defensive player.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: C.N. 11543: <From John Donaldson (Berkeley, CA, USA):

‘The recent publication of all 20 games from Bobby Fischer’s simultaneous exhibition in Münster, Germany in 1970 resolved several mysteries and gave the chess world over a dozen new games played by the late world champion.

The display was previously known, although not the exact date. The fact that it took place on 27 September 1970 makes it probable, if not 100% certain, that the exhibition game Fischer v Andersson, sponsored by the Swedish newspaper Expressen, occurred the day before. The Siegen Olympiad ended on 27 September, but the last day of play was 25 September. It is conceivable, if unlikely, that the Fischer v Andersson game was on 25 September, as neither played in the final round of the Olympiad.>

I wasn't aware the date of this game was uncertain. I note Spassky didn't play in the last round either, although he and Fischer were still in contention for the best score on top board:

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Agreed with Donaldson that scheduling the game for the last day of the Olympiad seems improbable, but it only just occurred that there's a major clue in the form of <sponsored by the Swedish newspaper Expressen>. I suggest one of our lazyboy Swedish readers pulls their finger out and gets on the case. I'll expect a report back within 72 hours.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: I've realised there's a major problem with Donaldson's line of argument. The 25th and 26th of September were Friday and Saturday, respectively. Fischer (not to mention Reshevsky) was still observing the Jewish Sabbath at this time - here's the American Olympiad schedule which confirms Fischer didn't play on any Friday or Saturday. Note that Olimpbase incorrectly gives the date of the USA - USSR match (Spassky vs Fischer, 1970) as the 19th, but it took place on Sunday the 20th.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Hmmmm, seems Donaldson was right and the game was played on the 26th, but he doesn't address the issue of playing a game for financial gain on the Sabbath. Sundown in Germany at that time of year wouldn't be till about 7pm, so it's hard to see the game starting that late.

C.N. 11562 also has some thoughts on Fischer's role in the development of the Hedgehog system, wherein he cites this simul game played the following day: Michels vs Fischer, 1970

Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: In my view, one of the most instructive games ever thanks to comments made by Chessgames people here.

This answers a big question for me I have had recently - how did Fischer manage the risk of calculation blunders. If Fischer did indeed say "I enjoy watching opponent's squirm" for me this is a way of enjoying playing in a non-risky committal manner when not needed. 34. Be5 is such a move rather than Rxf5.

It is the first time I have appreciated Fischer's Squirm comment and for me provides a way to navigate the balance in a practical game between playing flashy combinations and simply trying to win a game with "simple chess".

For those that too often play flashy sacrificial stuff and regret when there are holes in analysis, just remember FIscher's expression "I enjoy watching my opponent's squirm" and this maybe will put you on the safer mindset :)

Premium Chessgames Member
  kingscrusher: OTOH I remember GM Nunn emphasising about "kicking the boot in" so I am not so sure again ... oh dear....
Premium Chessgames Member
  harrylime: carlsen would give this game 2 outta ten lol lol
May-14-21  RookFile: 24. Nxg7 is a hard move to make. You give up your nice knight for an entombed bishop. Then you realize that Fischer not only made the move, but he planned to make it when he went into this line. Profound stuff.
Jun-30-21  RookFile: <izimbra: In that context, this exhibition game is kind of cool to see how Fischer puts on a caveman attack against a strong defensive player. >

It may look that way at first, but take another look. I'm sure you've heard of the Hedgehog defense that black often plays. Where did it come from? For a lot of people, the answer is this game. White is playing the hedgehog with the colors reversed. Toss in the g4, Rg3 etc. idea and the whole experience was other worldly to Andersson.

This game so impressed Andersson that he became one of the leading experts in the Hedgehog system himself. See for example:

Karpov vs Andersson, 1975

Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: didn't Spassky sometimes employ these quiet systems, as white? Perhaps Fischer wanted to see what a defensive expert, Andersson, would do. Spassky was the likely future opponent for the world's championship.
Jul-01-21  RookFile: I'm sure that everything Fischer did in those days had some sort of angle regarding the world championship. My guess is he wanted to give people something else to think about to prepare for a match against him. Of course, Spassky was already champ at this point so he must have begun thinking about how he was going to beat him.
Sep-21-21  CivilDisobedience: ...white hedgehog ok, but why like swimming pool??????
Dec-29-22  EphemeralAdvantage: Compare the position from this game after white's 16th with the position from the recent Carlsen vs N Abdusattorov, 2022 game after White's 18th. They are basically identical
Mar-17-23  andrea volponi: 20...Rd5(20...Kh8!=)-Ne4 Rb5-b4! axb4-g5! b3-Qc1!! +-
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