1971 Vancouver, CA - Fischer vs Taimanov

by Milica Knezevic on August 04, 2022

  • About five months after the Palma de Mallorca Interzonal (1970) qualifier was held, the first stage (the quarterfinals) of the Candidates matches was held in four cities in May 1971. 
  • In Vancouver, Canada there was a 6 game match between Mark Taimanov and Bobby Fischer, played May 16th - June 1st. Fischer sensationally won the match with a perfect score of 6-0, thereby proceeding to the Fischer - Larsen Candidates Semifinal (1971). 
  • After the event, Taimanov was reported to have said, "At least I still have my music." He wasn't being merely melodramatic: the consequences of this loss were to haunt him for years. In an interview with Joel Lautier, Taimanov later r match changed my life into hell ecounted:
  • "Until the match with Fischer in 1971, everything went smoothly in my chess career. This dramatic  changed my life into hell."
Fischer vs Taimanov
  • "As Fischer himself admitted at the time, the final score did not reflect the true balance of strength. The terrible feeling that I was playing against a machine which never made any mistake shattered my resistance. Fischer would never concede any weakening of his position, he was an incredibly tough defender. The third game proved to be the turning point of the match. After a pretty tactical sequence, I had managed to set my opponent serious problems. In a position that I considered to be winning, I could not find a way to break through his defenses. For every promising idea, I found an answer for Fischer, I engrossed myself in a very deep think which did not produce any positive result. Frustrated and exhausted, I avoided the critical line in the end and lost the thread of the game, which lead to my defeat eventually. Ten years later, I found at last how I should have won that fatal game, but unfortunately, it didn't matter anymore! I have written a book about this match, entitled How I Became Fischer's Victim, it represents an essay on the American player and describes how I perceived his style and personality, once the match was over."
  • "The sanctions from the Soviet government were severe. I was deprived of my civil rights, my salary was taken away from me, I was prohibited from travelling abroad and censored in the press. It was unthinkable for the authorities that a Soviet grandmaster could lose in such a way to an American, without a political explanation. I therefore became the object of slander and was accused, among other things, of secretly reading books of Solzhenitsin. I was banned from society for two years, it was also the time when I separated from my first wife, Lyubov Bruk."

Fischer vs. Taimanov 1971: 6-0

  • In order to witness and scroll through one of chess histories most epic moments, all you need to do is continue reading. 
  • Fischer created a long lasting legacy for himself with the matches in 1971 in Vancouver Canada, so we will first guide you through his matches with Taimanov and hopefully you will be able to learn more about both of these legendary players. 
  • Both Fischer and Taimanov will be remembered in chess history as one of the greatest to ever sit cross one another. However, this clean win by Fischer shocked the chess world forever, and started the switch in chess from complete Russian domination towards a more versatile future ahead. 
  • So explore the following six games ahead together with Chess Universe

1. The beginning: King's Indian Defense: Orthodox Variation. Korchnoi Attack (E97)

2. Lonely Knight: Sicilian Defense: Paulsen. Szen Variation (B44)

3. Queen's Dominance: King's Indian Defense: Orthodox Variation. Korchnoi Attack (E97)

4. Bobby's Masterpiece: Sicilian Defense: Paulsen. Bastrikov Variation (B47)

5. Taimanov's Blunder: Gruenfeld Defense: General (D80)

6. Fischer's Relentlessness: Sicilian Defense: Paulsen. Szen Variation (B44)

For a bit more on Bobby Fischer visit these blogs:


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