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Fischer=Kasparov practically

  • #1

    In the amazingly many topics that compare Fischer and Kasparov, either directly or in the format "who is the best chessplayer of all time", I've noticed a lot of sentiment saying that somehow because Fischer decided not to contest the 1975 WC game against Karpov (due to his rather stubborn nature and unfortunately, due to his expremely poor diplomacy skills making him take a fairly reasonable stand against something that he couldn't convince FIDE to bend about), that makes him the lesser chess player.

    Now firstly: off the board, nothing can make you a worse chessplayer. Only the moves you make make you a good or bad player (or, in these days, whether you came up with the moves, or you used a computer too, but we won't go there).

    secondly: I don't think many of the people that have these ideas know their recent history (or their world championship history).

    1) Fischer's clause about him retaining the title in case of a tie is hardly controversial. It's happened in WC games both before and after 1975, and will no doubt continue to happen.

    2) Kasparov did practically the same thing in 1993 (not contest a title because of fairly reasonable disagreements). True, he played on by creating his own championship instead of Fischer just retiring, but the fact remains that he did it too. Also, amusingly, this was only one year after Fischer holding his own championship in 1992 against Spassky (he did bill it as the world championship) so maybe that's where Kasparov got his idea from? ;)

    3) After losing his title to Kramnik in 2000, he threw a hissy fit rather than contest the title again. You can read it here, but I'll paraphrase it for you.

    - The organisers of the qualifying tournament were mean to me once :(

    - I played against Karpov when he won qualies, Short when he won Qualies and beat Karpov therefore earning the right, Anand when he won qualies.

    - When Shirov beat Kramnik for the right to play me, I played Kramnik anyway because I reckon he's still better, despite Shirov earning the right.

    - I've won a bunch of tournaments and stuff, I should totally be the next challenger. Kramnik shouldn't even give anyone else a chance to qualify, and should play me for the championship.

    What a whinger.

    Don't get me wrong, Fischer did similar stuff - and not only that, but he was racist and sexist. But clearly they're both whingers and stubborn and just a little arrogant (but brilliant chess players). You can't say one is better or worse at chess for any of these reasons.

  • #2


  • #3

    It is obvious that because the prime of the chess careers of Kasparov and Fischer came on a different time , any comparison between them will allways be subjective. If someone for some reason feels that off-board actions make anyone a less of a chess player, it is his right to feel so - I dont think there is any ultimate truth on that.

    So to be honest, I dont think there is much sense in opening another topic on Fischer vs Kasparov matter. It is likely to end up in two sides flaming other sides opinions.

    It's a shame that those two chess legends never got to play each other over the chess board.

  • #4

    i think some of us spend to much time thinking about these ridiculous hypothetical situations and not enough time working on your actual chess skills

  • #5

    What's your point?

  • #6

    Er, KingAlex24, you know that chess is just a hobby for me, right? A way to procrastinate? Like thinking about ridiculous hypotheticals. But it isn't even the point of this thread to say "who is better at chess?". It is merely a comparison of Fischer and Kasparov's antics OFF THE BOARD.

    And I've just challenged you, let's see if I can make you eat your words about actual chess skills ;)


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