NAME: Robert J. (Bobby) Fischer
BIRTHDATE: March 9, 1943
BIRTHPLACE: Chicago, Illinois
CREDENTIALS: Include becoming the World Chess Champion in 1972; inventor of the Fischer Chess Clock and Fischer Random Chess
MODUS OPERANDI: When White, typically opens with e4. As Black, most often plays the Sicilian or King's Indian. Opponents who survive the opening face sharp, aggressive, brilliantly conceived moves. No identified weaknesses over the board.
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH: After his parents separated when he was a toddler, Bobby moved with his mom and sister to Brooklyn, New York. When he was 6 years old and his sister, Joan, was 11, they received a chess set as a gift and taught themselves to play from the instructions that came with it. From then on, chess became his passion. He won the U.S. Junior Championship at the age of 13 and the U.S. Championship a year later. In 1958, at age 15, he set a record (since broken) for being the youngest player to earn the rank of grandmaster. After winning the title of World Chess Champion in 1975, he vanished from public competition for the next 20 years. Like an alarmingly high number of other top chess players over the past two centuries, personality and psychological issues began to overshadow his accomplishments at the board. Although his legacy in other areas is controversial and unsettled, there's no question that Bobby Fischer is among the most talented people to have ever played chess.