Bobby Fischer Crushed the Scandinavian Defense!

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This is a game played between William G Addison and Robert James Fischer in the Palma de Mallorca Interzonal (1970). It was the last Interzonal held as a one-section round robin.

Fischer actually did not qualify for this Interzonal as he hadn’t played the Zonal. But his friend Pal Benko gave up his spot for Fischer so that he could play this tournament. It was proved good because Fischer pretty much crushed his opponents – he scored 18.5/23 points and was 3 points ahead of Larsen who got the 2nd place. The top 6 players of this tournament – Fischer, Larsen, Geller, Hubner, Taimanov, and Uhlmann – qualified for the Candidates Tournament.

About the Candidates Tournament

⭐ Bobby Fischer beat Taimanov 6-0 in the Quarterfinal Match
⭐ Bobby Fischer beat Bent Larsen 6-0 in the Semifinal Match
⭐ Bobby Fischer beat Tigran Petrosian 6.5-2.5 in the Final Match

Fischer was qualified to play for the World Championship against Boris Spassky in the year 1972 (The Match of the Century).

It’s said that Fischer laughed at the Black’s first move 1…d5, the Scandinavian Defense. It is really impressive how he won this game, getting an advantage in the opening after sacrificing a pawn.

However, the Scandinavian Defense is not a bad opening. It also shows how much chess has changed in the last few decades because some opening lines are not respected nowadays as the evolution of chess computers and engines gave life to a lot of new openings and variations. The Scandinavian Defense is even played by the top grandmasters today – it was played by the World Champion Magnus Carlsen against Fabiano Caruana in the Chess Olympiad (2014), and the Norwegian won that game! 

What do you think about this opening? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

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