Prologue

Chess ¡s a game for strong people, of strong character.

Botvinnik

If chess is a game for people of character, then Fischer was born to become a chess genius, because it was precisely his character that led him to leave school while still an adolescent and embark on a journey studded with inevitable pitfalls, his only quide and muse the chequered board.

He would go on to rewrite the history books: become the youngest ever grandmaster, achieve boundless success and transcend his own capabilities. He would learn Russian and Serbo-Croat, study and practise chess until he dropped. By the 1960s his mere presence was enough to raise the limits of expectation. In the Majorca Interzonal he broke the record for sporting supremacy, then went on to eliminate Taimanov and Larsen (both by 6-0). After a clear-cut victory over Petrosian, nothing could stand in his way; not even Boris Spassky in Reykjavik, on whom he imposed his powerful personality. Marked by an unbeatable will to win, possessed of an unsurpassed style of play, there was only a single objective branded on his mind: to be the best.

What do we know of him and his game today? Fischer has returned to the arena, and to mark the event a team of prominent masters, including two world champions, brushess off the cobwebs shrouding each of his marvellous games, which you now can have the privilege of reproducing and studying, guided by the hand and magnifying glass of the experts.

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