Saturday, 11 April 2009

Fischer's Fury

First published in 1969 'My 60 Memorable Games' is a collection of Fischer’s games from the 1957 New Jersey Open to the 1967 Sousse Interzonal. The book includes nine draws and three losses, has been described as a 'classic of objective and painstaking analysis' and is regarded as one of the great pieces of chess literature.

Original cover design (Simon & Schuster 1969)

Bobby Fischer

Batsford released a new edition in 1995 when John Nunn converted the original descriptive notation to algebraic. Fischer denounced the new edition, accusing Batsford of 'changing everything in my book, the notation, the format, the pages, the analysis... and without paying royalties.' It emerged that they had added faulty analysis to one game, incorrectly believing Fischer had overlooked a mate in 4.

Batsford cover design 2008 edition

Chess historian Edward Winter discovered that there had also been over 570 textual changes. He wrote in CHESS magazine that '... entire notes of Fischer’s had been omitted, individual words had been deleted, other words had been added', and 'Fischer’s wording had simply been changed without justification'.

In 2008, Batsford reissued the book using Fischer's original words claiming that the only change made was the conversion to algebraic notation, although a review found that several typographical errors and notation mistakes have also been corrected.

See Winter's article 'Fischer's Fury' in which he examines the claims.

Below, a fine example of the young Fischer's play against Petrosian, one of the world's toughest GM's at the time and a future World Champion (1963-69). The game is fully annotated in My60MG's.

Robert James Fischer - Tigran Petrosian, [B17]
Bled ct Bled ct, 1961
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nd7 5.Nf3 Ngf6 6.Nxf6+ Nxf6 7.Bc4 Bf5 8.Qe2 e6 9.Bg5 Bg4 10.0–0–0 Be7 11.h3 Bxf3 12.Qxf3 Nd5 13.Bxe7 Qxe7 14.Kb1 Rd8 15.Qe4 b5 16.Bd3 a5 17.c3 Qd6 18.g3 b4 19.c4 Nf6 20.Qe5 c5 21.Qg5 h6 22.Qxc5 Qxc5 23.dxc5 Ke7 24.c6 Rd6 25.Rhe1 Rxc6 26.Re5 Ra8 27.Be4 Rd6 28.Bxa8 Rxd1+ 29.Kc2 Rf1 30.Rxa5 Rxf2+

31.Kb3 Rh2 32.c5 Kd8 33.Rb5 Rxh3 34.Rb8+ Kc7 35.Rb7+ Kc6 36.Kc4 1–0

Download all 60MG's in PGN or view them here