Young Brooklyn Schoolboy Hailed As Chess Prodigy
Young Brooklyn Schoolboy Hailed As Chess Prodigy NEW YORK — liP) — A quiet iroup huddled around a table in the corner of the Marshall Chess Club, watching an almost unbelievable game. The players were Donald Byrne, a chess master, and Bobby Fischer, a 13-year-old Brooklyn schoolboy playing* in his [test uiaj& tournament. Time and again — with bold, surprising moves — Bobby outfoxed his more experienced opponent. "Impossible," whispered one of the onlookers. "Byrne is losing to a 13-year-old nobody." "Mate," paid this "nobody," and the game was over. Bobby d earned his first victory in the Lesslng J. Rosenwald Trophy Tournament. Chess Review magazine called it the "game of the century—a shinning masterpiece of combination play performed by -a boy ot 13 against a formidable opponent, matching the finest on record in the history of chess prodigies." Bobby didn't Kin the Rosen- .vald. tournament — the trophy went to Sammy Reshevf.ky, th« ranking O. S. player—but the crew-cut youngster who .would rather play chess than eat established himself as a young man to watch. New York chess enthusiasts have recognized Bobby's ability for several years.' Hans Kmoch, secretary-man-i ager of the Manhattan Chess ( Club, says:' "For his age. I don't think! there is any better chess ;>layer in the world. He Li a genuine prodigy and one of Ihe best players in our club." Bobby appears embarrassed by all the attention he has drawn since he defeated Byrne. I just made the moves I thought Kere best," lie says modestly. ''I was just lucky." Where did he learn the game? "My sister taught me when I was six," he says. "She was 12 and didn't know too much about the game, but she told me where and how to move the pieces. I liked it and have been playing it ever since." Does he want to continue playing the game and perhaps become one of the great players? "I could play chess all my life," lie answers shyly. "I like tournaments and would like toi play in a lot of them. As for being great, I don't know about | that." Kmoc.h. however, has fewer reservations: "The outlook is brilliant. .If he continues to proceed the way he has the past year or two. he's likely to become one of the greatest players of all time.