Fischer On Spassky


220px-boris_spasski_1984_salonikiBoris Spassky


Spassky was on Robert Fischer’s Top Ten List.  These views of Fischer on Spassky were made in 1964.  Remember Spassky played for the World Championship in 1966 and lost. He played again in 1969 and won; both matches were against Tigran Petrosian.


Boris Spassky 

Spassky, as 25-year old Russian player is on this list principally because of his unique style. HIs game is marked by super-sharp openings; in addition, he has his own openings and his own little lines which work quite well for him. 

Spassky sacrifices with complete abandon. I recall a game he played in a Russian championship with Bronstein. Bronstein attacked Spassky’s Rook with a Pawn. Spassky left the Rook where it was, and makde a Knight move instead. He lost the Rook, sacrificed his Knight, and five moves later he mated Bronstein. 

In a game I played him severral years ago, he lost a Pawn for no compensation. Then he played as if the Pawn he had lost meant nothing. While I was trying to figure out what was goin on in his head, I blundered and lost the game. Spassky sits at the board with the same dead expression whether he’s mating or being mated. He can blunder away a piece, and you are never sure whether it’s a blunder or a fantastically deep sacrifice. 

He has some weaknesses, but he makes it difficult for an opponent to take advantage of them. He doesn’t play closed positional chess very well. Still, he always seems a little ahead of you on theory. He ought to have a very good future. It’s difficult yet to tell his relative strength because he has played mostly tournaments, no matches. But he rates a place on this list because of his dynamic, individual style.


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