Monday, January 21, 2008

Bobby Fischer (1943 - 2008)

Just read the news about the death of Bobby Fischer, the only World Chess Champion from the US and was said to be the greatest chess player of all time. It's a pity that he didn't really play competitively in his last 30 years or so as I believe that he would have created a lot more great games.

To remember his greatness, the following was an ingenious play by him when he played against Donald Byrne in 1956

photo from chessgames.com

In the above, Fischer's queen was being attacked by the white bishop at c5. Instead of moving his queen away, he sacrificed it by moving his bishop to e6! In exchange of the queen, he gained massive attack opportunities with his minor pieces and finally won the game.

For those of you who don't know how to play chess, the queen is the most powerful pieces from your army and it's a big decision when you choose to sacrifice it. Despite this, Bobby Fischer had the insight to foresee that the sacrifice was worth it. (If you're interested in the complete game record, you can see it here)

Rest in peace Bobby!