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Robert James Fischer vs Norbert Leopoldi
Western Open (1963), Bay City, MI USA, rd 3, Jul-05
Sicilian Defense: Old Sicilian. Open (B32)  ·  1-0



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Given 22 times; par: 43 [what's this?]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Jan-21-05  lopium: 23.Na7 Was the winning move. Strong attack and good last move of defense.
Apr-06-05  RookFile: Well, it's weird, because Bobby
could have played 8. Bxf7+,
essentially the same idea he used
against Reshevsky in 1958, i.e. Kxf7
9. e5 Ne8 10. Ne6
Apr-06-05  Kangaroo: To RookFile
Not so easy:
8. Bxf7+ Kxf7. 9. e5 Ng8 10. Ne6 Qe8 - a minor difference between this game and that with Reshevsky.
Apr-07-05  RookFile: But White is winning easily, no?

8. Bxf7+ Kxf7, 9. e5 Ng8 10. Ne6 Qe8.

To start with, he can simply play
11. Ng5+ Kf8 12. Qf3+, winning the
piece back, leaving black with a miserable king position.

But.... 11. Nc7 looks stronger,
if 11.... Qd8 12. Qd5+ and what do
you do with black? 12... e6 13. Nxe6
threatens annhilation with Ng5+, and
by the way, black has a loose knight
at a5.

Or 11. Nc7 Qf8 !? and I think 12. Qf3+ must lead to a win.

Apr-07-05  RookFile: Hmm. The more you look, the more
you see. Maybe even better
is the complex 8. Bxf7+ Kxf7
9. e5 Ng8 10. Ne6 Qe8 11. Qf3+.

Not 11.... Kxe6 because of 12. Qd5
and lights out.

So, something like 11... Bf6... but
now white can take time out for
12. Nc7 Qd8 13. Nxa8.... nice to
pick off that rook in the corner,
and the fate of the knight on a8 is
irrelevant because black still has
a pinned on f6.

Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <RookFile>
Surely this is all still a book line, isn't it?

Following the "find similar games" link, we see Fischer varied with 8. Be2 in Fischer vs M Bertok, 1961, while 8. Bxf7+ was tried in Ivkov vs Soos, 1962 which continued 8...Kxf7 9. e5 d5 10. exf6 Bxf6, and in M Guid vs A Zakharchenko, 2004 with 8...Kxf7 9. e5 Nc4 10. exf6 Bxf6.

In short, I don't think Fischer "missed" Bxf7+. More likely, the resulting position simply didn't match his preferences.

Mar-07-07  zev22407: What is wrong with 9)..Nh5 10)g4 N-c4
11)g4xh5 Nxe5
Premium Chessgames Member
  beatgiant: <zev22407: What is wrong with 9)..Nh5 10)g4 N-c4 11)g4xh5 Nxe5>

After 8. Bxf7+ Kxf7 9. e5 Nh5 10. g4 Nc4 11. gxh5 Nxe5 12. Qe2, White has easy play for an attack with later moves like 0-0-0, hxg6+, Rg1, f4 etc.

Maybe someone who knows this opening would like to comment?

Mar-07-07  Tomlinsky: If black is to have any reasonable chance of a good game after 8.Bxf7 I think that trying to hang on to the knight is pure folly. If black implements immediate activity he can make a game of it, otherwise his position is just going backwards.

Ignoring the recapture of the knight and playing for piece activity and the centre immediately black gets a reasonable chances. I believe after 8...Kxf7 9.e5 that a more accurate solution than in M Guid vs A Zakharchenko, 2004 starts with the move 9...d5 followed by e5, taking the centre and preparing Be6, Rhf8 and a dummy castle. For example:

8.Bxf7+ Kxf7 9.e5 d5 10.exf6 Bxf6
11.Qf3 e5 12.Ndb5 Be6

click for larger view

and Black doesn't look in such bad shape to me. His development is almost complete with rook's communicating and further exchanges now potentially favour Black having achieved a position like this.

A move such as 8.Bxf7 is played when you are sure accurate play by the opponent won't lead to a game with more complexity than you wish to take on. Unless you've prepared beforehand with adequate responses to something like the above of course. Chances are against most opponents it may well give black a strategically weak position based on their innacurate, even if only slightly, responses. Here, as usual, with a good plan and accuracy on black's part the game is still very much on.

Mar-07-07  RookFile: You're probably right, Tomlinsky. I don't usually make this error, I give Fischer more credit than most. It probably is the case that the move Bxf7+ flashed into his head within a half a second, and he rejected the move after considering a line such as the one you give above.
Mar-07-07  Tomlinsky: <RookFile> It's interesting though. Definitely worth a shot against an opponent partial to the fianchetto. Especially if, as here, they play 7...Na5 because they are obviously not up to speed on the line in the first place. The normal procedure of 7...0-0-0, 7...d6 or 7...Qa5 put paid to the idea.

Unless they have prepared something deeper and 7...Na5 was the lure!

Academic but interesting.

May-09-14  newzild: The problem with 8. Bxf7+ is that it's a speculative sacrifice, and in this situation there are two problems with playing such a move:

1) Fischer didn't like to sacrifice unless he got clear compensation (usually positional).

2) His opponent was much weaker than himself. The easiest way to lose to a weaker opponent is to create complications. The surest way to beat a weaker opponent is to keep the position simple and to rely on technique (as Fischer did here).

May-09-14  Petrosianic: Yeah, Bxf7+ is more of a Tal move than a Fischer move.

Only in this case, I'm not sure Tal would play it either. White just doesn't seem to get all that much for it.

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