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I believe Bobby Fischer always suffered from a tremendous fear of failure. So in that respect, he was fearful of Karpov. Add to this that Fischer had almost completely withdrawn from world class competition after his victory over Spassky. He knew he was rusty when the Karpov challenge loomed and this compunded his insecurity.
All that said, I believe that had Fischer played he would have beaten Karpov.
It was Kasparov, who ultimately would have dethroned Bobby, the chess genius/crackpot.
Interesting how , so far, only Americans think Fischer would have won.
Against ? and when ? In 1975 most chess people believed Fischer would beat Karpov , even Karpov himself. In 78 Karpov's chances would be more realistic....
Specifically against Karpov, but most likely against anyone.
'when' is more interesting - apart from all the sillyness that trysts is going to suggest like, 'when fischer came back from the dead' or, 'when fischer had no eyes arms or legs', during what period do you think Karpov would have beaten Fischer?
Karpov > Fischer
If this were true I have to wnder why Karpov's best rating never topped Fischer's best ?
Because Fischer chose opponents that he was likely to win against, whilst Karpov played against anyone.
Evidence? Then this debate can be settled!
In all the Fischer threads out there, you would think someone would actually talk about his specific games and not whether he was afraid/could have beaten soandso.
Fischer chose his opponents ?! What an idiot !
Not only untrue, but IMPOSSIBLE. Did he choose Spassky?
I don't think Fischer was afraid of Karpov or anyone else. And as good as Karpov was/is, he was NOT ready for Fischer back then. Fischer's problem was Fischer and wanting his way. People can say what they want, but from 1970 through the WCC, Fischer was completely beyond any other chess player alive. He could have beaten anyone.
I like chess and I don't care who knows it!
...I personally don't think Fischer was afraid of anyone...I believe he perceived himself akin to "Superman"...unbeatable, indestructable...and all that stuff...he clearly had an "air" about him...and seemed to feel that everyone else was beneath him...a larger than life persona...those with this sort of personality (or disorder) don't fear anyone, no matter the odds...
...could he have beaten Karpov at the time? Sure, why not? Could Karpov defeat Fischer? Sure, why not?...the cold hard truth of the matter is that Fischer refused to play the likes of Karpov and Kasparov for whatever reason, and has left the chess world forever thinking "what if?"...to forever fight amongst ourselves in verbal combat, about a great player who walked away from the 64 squares...
He became world champion against the soviets, who were organizing against him..
Fischer said; I'm not scared of Karpov, I've got a higher rating, better tournament record, etc
Karpov said; he probably wasn't scared of me, but himself
My guess is Karpov was someone who could beat him, and was a big challenge for Fischer after he had already taken on a lot.
Fischer didn't withdrew against Karpov, he left the game 3 years sooner, after defeating Spassky. It was obvious he wouldn't defend his WC in 1975.
It's all a matter of motivation. He spent 15 years confronting the soviet armada with all their colluting tactics. In 72 he felt the job was done and lost motivation for the game.
Who would have won if Fischer didn't refused to play? Karpov.
Who was a better player? If you take Korchnoi as a benchmark (who was older than Fischer), Fischer. Fischer at his peak outplayed all the soviet armada (including Korchnoi) while Karpov only had a single serious opponent (Korchnoi) until Kasparov appeared.
Three Fischer threads a week is getting a bit too much.
It's a sign of just how good he was. Years after he died, and decades after he won the championship, people are still in awe.
Personally, my guess is that when Fischer was the challenger, he felt like he was the best, and he wanted to be recognized as the best, and he played because the only way he would get the recognition would be to win. Then, having won, I think he was afraid to play, at least in part, because he couldn't stand the thought of possibly being beaten.
Also, Fischer always had a "It has to be my way or no way" thing. When they were trying to agree to how the Fischer/Karpov match would be played, he set some rules that the Karpov camp wouldn't agree to. And being Bobby, he wouldn't give an inch.
I think he would probably have won, but I have no doubt that the Soviets would have put together an incredible team to try and beat him, and obviously, he knew that.
When he won the championship, he played some openings that Spassky hadn't spent any time on saying "Fischer would never play that, lets not waste time on it". (The English Opening was one.) If Karpov were preparing for a match with Fischer, I'm sure that wouldn't happen. He would have learned from Spassky's mistake.
Now, not many tournaments have adjourned games, but at that time, it was common. And when the russian side can bring in a whole pile of GM's to help their player, every adjounment gives an edge to their side.
That's not always enough, of course. All the analysis in the world won't turn a lost game into a won game. The last game of the championship with Spassky, Fischer sealed a winning move, and Spassky didn't bother to show up for the completion of the game.
And the first game Fischer won in the match, Fischer sealed a move and announced "I've sealed a crusher!". Spassky and crew alalyzed the position overnight, opened the envelope to see Fischers move, and resigned within minutes.
Obviously, all we can do is speculate. But if anyone is counting votes, put me down for Fischer beating Karpov. I think he would have done it, if he had played.
It's too bad he had such a twisted mind when he wasn't playing. It would sure have been nice to see him continue to play, and it would be nice if we could all respect the person, not just his chess abilities. I love what he could do on a chess board, but he was such a nutcase the rest of the time.
karpov is legend of chess.
fisher really afraid of karpov.
fisher never won against legend(karpov)
Fischer wasn't afraid of Karpov, he was afraid of everything, completely paranoid. FIDE didn't do anything to stop his descent into madness: he was right that the Soviets took it easy on each other in the Candidates' Tournament of 1962, and he was screwed at the Interzonal in Sousse 1967 after the organizers had agreed to accommodate his religious restrictions. Only the constant efforts of USCF Executive Director Edmondson ensured he completed the next cycle.
But his demands were beyond what any previous champion had been able to dictate after FIDE won control of the title after Alekhine's death, and he would not compromise in the least. Even if you agree with him in his dispute with FIDE, there was no reason he couldn't play matches outside their jurisdiction (the Soviets wouldn't participate, but there were other top players like Gligoric, Larsen, Portisch, and Hort who would have been happy to play him) and there was nothing stopping him from playing in tournaments. But he did.
Karpov may or may not have been able to handle Fischer in 1975, but he was improving at an astonishing pace in that period, and his style would have posed a far more difficult challenge to Fischer. Bobby loved taking advantage of weaknesses and exposing his opponents' risks as dubious. Karpov didn't create weaknesses and took few risks. He was the ideal challenger from a stylistic point of view.
Fischer fans forget that Karpov wasn't hiding, he played all over the world, winning a record 120 tournaments. Only Kasparov with 63 wins managed even half Karpov's record. Fischer never played Karpov by his choice, not Tolya's. Yes, Karpov only narrowly defeated Korchnoi in 1974, 1978, and 1981, but Korchnoi had also a plus record against Fischer (3-1 in decisive games, with a few draws) and that was before Viktor's prime period.
This isn't some discussion of Morphy vs Kasparov or Lasker v Kramnik or Alekhine vs Anand, Fischer and Karpov lived at the same time and it could have been settled on the board. The only reason it was not was Fischer's choice, not Karpov's.
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