Simultaneous Exhibition

April 1964

The following is a Bobby Fischer game that I guarantee you've never seen published anywhere.

In 1964 Fischer played numerous simultaneous exhibitions throughout the United States, and among the hundreds of opponents he faced that year was a young teenage boy from Pueblo, Colorado, named John Wallace. John and I were playing chess by mail at the time, and in his correspondence he shared with me the excitement of playing this game. Not only that, he mailed me the original autographed game score(!) in May of 1964, which I copied by hand (no photocopy machines back then), and from which I traced an image of Fischer's hastily scrawled autograph.  I mailed the score back to him with an offer of selling it to me, which he of course refused.  John got his game score back, and a few months later he stopped writing, broke off our correspondence games without any explanation, and I never heard from him again.

According to data provided by IM John Donaldson in his excellent book "A Legend on the Road, Bobby Fischer's 1964 Simul Tour", it would appear that this game was played in Denver, Colorado, on April 26, 1964.  I cannot say for sure, since I no longer have any of John Wallace's original correspondence.  However, according to entries in my 1964 diary, I can definitely say it was played sometime between April 7 and May 19.   There is no record of Fischer having played anywhere other than in Denver, so I must assume this is where it took place.

John wrote that he knew that he would lose, but wanted to see how long he could last before he got checkmated. His plan was to play a closed game, keep things nice and tight, and not open up any lines for Fischer's guns. For much of the game he succeeds, but it of course doesn't last. It's fascinating to watch how Bobby effortlessly cracks open Black's queenside and proceeds on a King hunt.  

Bobby Fischer - John Wallace
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 Nc6 5.a3 Ba5 6.f4 f6 7.Nf3 a6 8.Bd3 Bd7 9.0-0 Bb6 10.Be3 f5 11.Kh1 Nh6 12.Ne2 Qe7 13.b4 Na7 14.a4 c6 15.a5 Bc7 16.c3 0-0-0

position after 16 ... 0-0-0

Position after 16... 0-0-0
17.Nc1 Be8 18.Nb3 Bh5 19.Nc5 Nb5 20. Qb3 Ng4 21.Bg1 Bb8 22.c4 Nc7 23. Rac1 Nh6 24. cxd5 exd5 25. Ng5 Bf7 26. Na4 Ba7 27. Rc2 Be6 28. Rfc1 Bd7 29. Nb6+ Bxb6 30. axb6 Na8 31. b5 ...
position after 31. b5
Position after 31. b5
31... axb5 32. Qxb5 Kb8 33. Qa5 Nxb6 34. Qxb6 Rc8 35. Ra1 Qd8 36. Qb4 Qf8 37. Qa4 Kc7 38. Qa5+ b6 39. Qa7+ Kd8 40. Qxb6+ Ke8 41. e6 Ke7 42. exd7 Kxd7 43. Ra7+ Kd6 44. Qc5++
position after 44. Qc5++

Final position

You may copy the score of this game and publish it anywhere you want, as long as you mention Bill Price as the source! I'm just glad to have been able to preserve a little piece of history for the chess world.
If anyone knows the whereabouts of John Wallace, please write me at address listed at bottom of page.
URL = http://billpriceweb.com/fischer.html

Fischer game score from May 1964 exhibition in Philadelphia
(with photocopy of original score sheet with Fischer autograph!)

Fischer-Powell game score from May 1964 exhibition in Richmond. This one Fischer lost!

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Copyright 1998 by Bill Price

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