Pisces and their Strategy

by Dagmar Seifert
3/6/2023 – Bobby Fischer is certainly the most famous of the Pisces chess players. But other top players include Bent Larsen, Veselin Topalov, Vasyl Ivanchuk, Teimour Radjabov, Hou Yifan, Anna Muzychuk and David Bronstein. Those who are Pisces can sometimes be as brilliant as Albert Einstein. With the Pisces-born, the circle of the twelve signs of the zodiac has come full circle, making this our final instalment.| Photo: Pixabay

ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024 ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024

It is the program of choice for anyone who loves the game and wants to know more about it. Start your personal success story with ChessBase and enjoy the game even more.


Pisces and their Strategy

If you ask an astrologer how someone born between February 19 and March 20 fights, they will probably answer, "Preferably not at all." 

Typical Pisces actually feel much too sensitive and sensible for going to battle. They show themselves neither as ice-cold analysts nor as passionate warriors. However, that's why they're neither dim-witted nor cowardly. But often breathtakingly eccentric, bizarre - and ingenious.  

The enthusiastic chess player Albert Einstein, for example, * March 14, is not exactly considered a fool, but rather one of the greatest thinkers of his time. And yet, the most famous portrait of him is the one in which he sticks out his tongue long and wide. Fish are usually just weird birds.

Albert Einstein was a passable chess player, and a friend of Emanuel Lasker | Photo: Rob de Roy / Pixabay

Their strategic recipe (if there is one) is: deceive, camouflage and confuse. This is how the hunted, the victims, are most likely to act. And indeed, a real Pisces is ready to win the battle by sacrificing himself - or one of his officers. If the Pisces fighter does it really well, his opponent even has a crumpled conscience at the end.

Queens and queen sacrifices

For example, in one of his most famous winning games (1966 in Los Angeles against the then world champion Tigran Petrosjan), the Danish grandmaster Bent Larsen, *4 March, was able to mount a wonderful queen sacrifice.


The Azerbaijani grandmaster Teimour Radjabov, * March 12, managed to beat not only Gary Kasparov in 2003, but also the long-time world champion Viswanathan Anand, with the black pieces and not least by means of a fantastic queen sacrifice.


And it is precisely this, namely intuition, that is probably the greatest strength of Pisces people, which is perhaps why there are such classy female Pisces chess players as Hou Yifan, * February 27, Anna Muzychuk, * February 28, or Lei Tingjie, * March 3.

For years Hou Yifan has topped the female ELO list as the strongest chess player. In 2016 she visited the Hamburg ChessBase Studio and her close friend Frederic Friedel.

Genius and madness

The overdeveloped sensitivity is naturally, on the other hand, the sore point of this zodiac sign. Where the Gemini chess player can be irritated by intellectual distraction, it hits the Pisces right in the soul.

And the Ukrainian grandmaster Vasyl Ivanchuk, *18 March, established his reputation as a chess genius primarily through original creative ideas. However, when things get too exciting, he can't stand the tension - for example, in 1991 in the quarter-finals of the Candidates Competition against the cool Artur Jussupow.  

There is, by the way, a splendid video of Ivanchuk in 2016 in Doha, almost missing his own award ceremony because he is so engrossed over the chessboard - playing checkers! (His opponent was Baadur Jobava.) Finally, the announcer's voice penetrates his consciousness, Ivanchuk gallops off, hops onto the winner's podium, has the gold medal bobbled around him, and takes the winner's prize in his hand - while you can see from his face that his mind is still stuck on the board, planning the next moves. That's why he rushes back right after the ceremony and eagerly finishes the game, the congratulatory bouquet absent-mindedly still in his hand. This is really very crazy - and extremely endearing.

Bobby Fischer

Probably the most legendary chess genius of all time, Robert James - or rather - Bobby Fischer, *9 March, did not come across quite as amiable. He expressed views that made the listeners' hair stand on end: among other things, that Hitler was a swell guy, that the events of September 11 in New York were welcome, and that women were by nature limited creatures. Did he actually say these things because they corresponded to his innermost convictions, or was it more to provoke?

Probably the most famous and also most controversial person in chess history - Bobby Fischer.

It is fairly certain that he had a strained relationship with his mother, and this explains most of his dislikes. Mum was Jewish - Bobby couldn't stand Jews (although he himself was half-Jewish). Mum had grown up in America - Bobby thought America was stupid (although he was born and raised there himself). Mum was an enthusiastic communist and a supporter of the Soviet Union - Bobby hated the Russians and communism.  Besides, his mother was a woman - so Bobby didn't think much of such creatures (although he seemed to have had heaps of affairs with the species, his somewhat dark, moody charm seemed to attract). 

In 1972 Bobby sat opposite the Aquarian-born Russian Boris Spassky in the 'Match of the Century' in Reykjavík. Back then, in the middle of the Cold War, every child knew that the people in the Soviet Union were a) evil and b) never to be beaten in chess. But the America-despising American defeated Spassky.  

He managed to do so again twenty years later (after a long chess abstinence). Fischer's first win over Spassky had earned the Russian domestic disgrace; his fatherland berated him for not having prepared himself enough. The second win, surprisingly, brought Fischer domestic trouble: because the match took place in Yugoslavia, which was on a US sanctions list, he was now wanted on a warrant. So he went into exile and, according to the people who met him, became increasingly strange. The Pisces-born are simply too sensitive to constant pressure from outside.

In "Frederic's Mates" - Frederic Friedel's video series to accompany the book "Schachgeschichten" - the ChessBase co-founder tells us how he met Bobby Fischer, and that, among other things, was also bizarre.

Bobby Fischer's life seemed to consist of glaring white light and black cast shadows, a painful chessboard pattern. He died after 64 years - the number of squares on a board ...

Famous Pisces Chess Personalities + Birthdays:

Konstan­tinopolsky, Alexander - 19 February 1910
Bronstein, David -  19 February 1924
Gurevich, Mikhail -  22 February 1959
Lutz, Christopher -  24 February 1971
Granda Zúñiga, Julio E -  25 February 1967
Hou Yifan -  27 February 1994
Muzychuk, Anna -  28 February 1990
Golombek, Harry -  1 March 1911
Conquest, Stuart C. -  1 March 1967
Maróczy, Géza -  3 March 1870
Lei Tingjie -  3 March 1997
Van Foreest, Lucas -  3 March 2001
Larsen, Bent -  4 March 1935
Vasiukov, Evgeni -  5 March 1933
Minić, Dragoljub -  5 March 1937
Fernandez, Daniel Howard -  5 March 1995
Artemiev, Vladislav -  5 March 1998
Ashley, Maurice -  6 March 1966
Geller, Efim -  8 March 1925
Fischer, Robert James -  9 March 1943
Wu Wenjin -  10 March 1976
Radjabov, Teimour -  12 March 1987
Lê Quang Liêm -  13 March 1991
Mendonca, Leon Luke -  13 March 2006
Bellahcene, Bilel -  14 March 1998
Topalov, Veselin -  15 March 1975
Knaak, Rainer -  16 March 1953
Azmaipara­shvili, Zurab -  16 March 1960
Lagarde, Maxime -  16 March 1994
Ivanchuk, Vassily -  18 March 1969


Dagmar Seifert is a North German journalist, author and astrologer. She loves chess, but is by no means an overly good player. After all, she was the one who taught ChessBase staff member Arne Kähler how to move the pieces, when he was six years old.