Amazing Chess Game : Bobby Fischer vs Mikhail Tal – 1959 – Sicilian Defence – Najdorf (B90)

Okay this game is Fischer versus Tal in the Candidates tournament of 1959 Fischer wasn’t quite ready for the likes of Tal at that time and it was an interesting game nevertheless and shows Tal’s fine attacking technique Tal was playing Black so Fischer played e4 against him and Tal played the Sicilian defence Now Nf3 d6 d4 – all fairly standard Now here Tal plays a6 which is a very popular move even today just to stop this Bb5 check possibility Fischer plays Bc4 here so that is classically placing the bishop Now Tal plays e6 so he has now a Scheveningen type pawn structure These pawns are quite flexible later on White always has to watch out when black liberates these pawns with d5 or e5 later Fischer plays Bb3 and now Tal continues just natural development with Be7 Fischer now plays f4 and you’ll see here that black has a very natural development of
pieces and can target later the e4 square Black first castles and then Fischer plays Qf3. Qf3 is a little bit controversial because there is going to be a bishop fianchettoed later on this diagonal so this could get a tempo but if the queen is being used as a pivot square later via f3 to get to g3 later then it is more justified Queen c7 – castles … now b5 You see the bishop prepares naturally to go to b7 and also The Bb7 works very well with this b5-b4 idea to dislodge the knight to increase the pressure on the e4 square so all these pieces will be working very well together – the bishop here – the knight here but also it is instructive later how Tal further exerts pressure on e4. He wasn’t just content with this pressure as we’re going to see he plays bishop c6 which is a very nifty move not also threatening to dislodge the knight but also he has made space on b7 for the queen so this is a very elegant setup indeed where this queen and bishop can intensify that pressure on e4 pawn so Fischer hasn’t really got an attack here. He hasn’t got any pawns to sort of rip through Black’s king here and he’s a bit passive Rook e1 and now d5 immediately .. so Tal doesn’t bother moving any of these rooks he goes on with this d5 liberation and it establishes a very aggressive knight which can come now to f4 and also ripped open this line more to White’s king so not only positionally it was about the e4 pawn it was about establishing a road to White’s king which in the case of Tal any roads can often be decisive! Knight f4 c4 now so this is a very interesting move Emmm.. interesting because it’s a bit strange – it is sort of making space for the bishop to move back to c2 but I wonder if there was something better here ?! Lets have a quick look at this position maybe c3 for example to try and rip open the c-file – to share the c-file at least but anyway.. so c4 now Tal plays g6 again this is a very very coherent
strategy here about g2 You see this knight is also pointing at g2 and this g6 in a way aims to help this assault on this diagonal as we are going to see now after fxg Fischer doesn’t automatically recapture with hxg which could have been good as well because later he could play f5 he immediately plays f5 so he sacs a pawn. FIscher plays g7 Emmm which seems aggressive but Tal just takes it because he knows now that he can also use this road to White’s king – the g file so things are intensifying now after the king moves here there is now Rg8 on the cards so Fischer plays this Knight c5 which is tactically annoying but Tal just takes it and takes again and plays Qc7 now to hold up on e5 there is no Knight-e6. This knight is doing two jobs – it is attacking that and protecting this square Fischer now plays Qe3 intensifying the pressure on e5 but just Re8 so black’s position is quite solid rook e2 is now played offering an exchange sac. It shows how bad the White position is. He is seeing that this onslaught is going to continue now with Rg8 Tal now just takes that exchange so that he is the
exchange up. He’s material up now but he has still got this potentially
dangerous attack and he wastes no time with it. He plays now Bxg2 so if the king takes then Qxc5 check even or Fischer now plays Nxa6 then we see Queen a7 check King takes g2 but Tal is relentless in the
attack here. He doesn’t bother even taking this knight he goes for Fischer’s King in fact my analytical assistant saids it is now mate in 6 so this was very precisely played by Tal now mate in 5 … K-h3 so Tal continues with Qg7 which is quite optimal so there is a threat now of just Qh6 mating Fischer continues Bd1 and now the fastest most efficient move is against chosen by Tal so rook e6 with the idea of Rook h6 there’s absolutely no defense here so Fischer in this position resigned so this game is a very very powerful
demonstration of elegance in the attack just right from the opening black’s
pieces were coordinating very well to pressurise the e4 pawn . if we
look at this again just briefly.. b5 works well with the fianchettoed bishop on b7 the bishop c6 here vacates this square (b7) .. The Queen can intensify the pressure no hanging around for moving the rook.
Just an immediate d5 break to open up the diagonal even more and what is even more instructive now .. the Knight comes also to attack g2 but this g6 move and Tal doesn’t even mind the odd check because he knows he is going to have another road to White’s king on the g-line so Fischer really was quite devastated in this game in a way hmmm Tal was at the peak of his powers at the time of this game in 1959 Bishop takes g2 is just the fastest way to rip open the lines and it’s completely sound and you see now the g-file being used for devastating attack and the h file emmm so it was a bit of a crush … Tal really did crush Fischer in this game A very well played game!


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