Fischer - Spassky 1972 WCH Game 1 (E56)

An insight into Spassky's state of mind can be found in the following interview he gave a Western reporter:

I prefer to have good relations with my opponent. My chess suffers if I have to play a man I consider unfriendly. When I am in form my style is a little bit stubborn, almost brutal. Sometimes I feel a great spirit of fight which drives me on.

But deep down I lack faith in myself. I have often found that I have caught the basic idea of a position, the correct plan, but my great weakness is that I fail to follow the logical pattern through from beginning to end.

Actually I feel very nervous inside during a game - as if there was an explosion in progress. When I make a mistake I try to keep myself under control, to remain quiet and calm, and to find the best way out.

During a game I seem rather unruffled, but this is not really so. It is like a clown's face put on for the occasion. When I appear particularly calm I am really feeling especially nervous.

Spassky sits at the board with the same dead expression whether he's mating or being mated - FISCHER


  • 4 years ago


    NM NoRematch   I presume "alphabits" as we used to call him back in my younger days (the paleothic or mesozoic era, I forget which) knows what he's talking about, he was the only Soviet GM willing be "Victor the Terrible's" 2nd vs Karpov in 1974. BTW I respect Roman D. very much despite the glib nickname I use!

    I read that Botvinnik was never friendly with potential or actual opponents when  he was WCH and would keep a picture of the next challenger up on the wall of the room he studied in. He only became pals with Smyslov years after they were both "retired" from the WCH.

  • 4 years ago

    NM NoRematch

    That's interesting that Spassky wanted to have good relations with his opponent.  According to Roman D. on his video, Korchnoi is the exact opposite, he has to demonize his opponent in order to play well.

  • 4 years ago


    Interesting, who would have known that Spassky felt this way! Great game!

  • 4 years ago


    do the game where fischer decided not to show up :)

  • 4 years ago


    I remember my neighbor giving me crap about FIscher, because I was an active member of USCF at the time. Like it was my fault he was all F***ed up!

  • 4 years ago


    Very great game.

  • 4 years ago


    One of the things I remember about following this match back in '72 was that I doubted Bobby would even show up for the 1st game.  

Back to Top

Post your reply: