Bobby Fischer Child Prodigy

Bobby Fischer was an American chess Grandmaster recognized as one the greatest chess players of all time by many chess players of today. Fischer was a child prodigy who dedicated himself to chess and became a legend with his skills.

Fischer, only a six-year-old boy at the time, learned how to play chess with his sister using the instructions from a chess set bought at a local candy store. On vacation, young Bobby found a book on old chess games and studied fervently. On November 14, 1950, Bobby’s mother realized his immense potential and sent a postcard to the Brooklyn Eagle to find children for Bobby to play with. The postcard was forwarded to Hermann Helms, who helped set him on his path to success. Carmine Nigro, president of the Brooklyn Chess Club, became his mentor, and Fischer joined the strongest chess club in America, the Manhattan Chess Club.

Fischer joined the Hawthorne Chess Club, led by John W. Collins, in 1956. The successful player coached many of the country’s leading players in his time. Fischer dedicated much of his time to attending the chess club and being mentored beneath Arnold Denker, future chess grandmaster.

At only 13 years old Fischer won a game that became known as the Game of the Century. Fischer won a brilliancy prize for the game, and Hans Kmoch was quoted to call the match “a stunning masterpiece of combination play performed by a boy of 13 against a formidable opponent, [that] matches the finest on record in the history of chess prodigies.” One year later he participated in eight US Championships and won every single one. At 15 years old, Fischer was the youngest Grandmaster and the youngest Candidate for the World Championship. He achieved the only perfect score in the history of the US championship with 11-0.

1957 proved an eventful year for young Fischer. United States Chess Federation published the eleventh national rating list, stating that Fischer was rated at 2231. This qualified him as a master, and the country’s youngest ever chess master. July saw Fischer successfully defend his title as US Junior. In August Fischer participated in the U.S. Open Chess Championship, defeating the opposition and becoming the youngest U.S. Open Champion ever.

The USCF invited Fischer into the 1957-58 U.S. Championship. At fourteen, Fischer became the youngest US champion in history to win the tournament. The record still stands to this day. Fischer also earned the International Master title, as the championship was also the US Zonal Championship.

The young prodigy moved on to become the youngest ever Candidate, also earning himself a rank as the youngest Grandmaster in history (up until 1991).

bobby fischer

This game Fischer versus Ruben Shocron is from “My 60 Memorable Games” where Bobby wins by a shocking move and a pure over sight by Shocron. I played Shocron at the World Open in the late 80’s and won in a similar fashion at least similar in the sense that he did not see it coming. If you don’t have a copy of Bobby’s “My 60 Memorable Games” I highly recommend you order one from the link above before it goes out of print again!

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

dsf September 23, 2011 at 4:56 am

awesome!

Yuri November 9, 2011 at 1:02 pm

40. … Qxd7
41. Rxg6+ hxg6
42. Qxd7 Kf8
43. Bc5 Bxc5
44. Qc7 Rb5
45. Qd8+ Kg7
46. Qd5 f6
47. Qxc4 Rb6
48. Qxc5 Rb3
49. Qe7+ Kg8
50. Qxf6 Rxc3
51. Qxg6+ Kf8
52. Qf6+ Kg8
53. g6 Rc4
54. Qf7+ Kh8
55. Qh7++

It isn’t only possible continuation of chess game. Here are a few of them between partners. But the score 1-0 is sure in benefit of the whites.

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