At the Moscow Central Chess Club, 1958, the following photograph was taken.
15-year-old Bobby Fischer was taking on future-WC Tigran Petrosian in blitz. Click on the photo to enlarge. The interesting question is, who are the onlookers?
I posed this question on the social networking website “Facebook”. It’s amazing what we found out.
The easiest identification is third from the left, standing. That’s many-times Candidate GM Yefim Geller.
That leaves us with the puzzle of the others….first of all, GM Fedorowicz informed that the young fellow standing on the left is American Larry Evans! (probably not a GM yet).
Then, Tom Bartell informed me that the person seated next to the board is Anatoly Volovich! I played Volovich fully 30 years later at Hunter College, NYC, in 1988, in the fantastically named “Gnomes of Zurich” Swiss-system tournament (result=draw). How did Tom know that? Anatoly told Tom :). The 1988-vintage Anatoly had a beard; it would have a stretch for me to have named him.
So now we are “hunting” for more names to put on the faces!
Postscript April 5, 2010
This just in from Dan Scoones:
Here is another photo taken during the same blitz session. From this angle it’s pretty obvious that the guy in the upper left is Yakov Estrin. And it’s also a good bet that the guy sitting to Petrosian’s right is Evgeny Vasyukov, who is also known to have played Fischer on this occasion. The downside is that there are a lot more guys in the background who we will probably never identify!