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W1xh8 wins a decisive material advantage. The attempt to not lose the h8-rook with Bad Wiessee 2UOR 1 ' 1. VJlixg5 VJlixg5 1 0. The Philidor Defence is named in honour of the famous 18th century chess theoretician-composer, who advocated this defence, albeit with the idea of pushing the pawn to f5 as early as the third move; a concept which today is viewed with great suspicion. Philidor's aggressive approach could have some validity after the moves 3. The modern treatment of this defence tends towards a more solid approach, with Black developing his pieces on the back ranks, usually.. Nonetheless, such a natural move could not be considered bad However, the best response is without doubt tZlgS-fS!

White has to content himself with a small advantage that may arise from his possession of the d-file and the weakness of the d6-square. It is for this reason that White should strive to exchange on e5. Black, for his part, has to playa waiting game - putting his faith in the solidity of his position. The following sequence has become an increasingly popular way of reaching this position: In conclusion, this is a defence that is in the process of being re-evaluated. It is certainly not as bad as has been thought in the past. It is suitable for solid, patient players, and it has the advantage of not requiring a lot of theoretical study.

Rodziriski Alekhine,Alexander Paris 1. Xiapu 19 1. Soviet Union 1. Wel cxb2 ' We are therefore talking about a defence which is conceptually ambitious and active. However, in practice, the resulting variations tend to lead to symmetrical and quiet positions, and the number of drawn games is unusually high. If Black is looking for a win, other defences would be more suitable.

On the other hand, it could be an excellent choice if you are black against a stronger player, or one who plays ambitiously: The Petroff Defence is OIle of the most extraordinary examples of opening reevaluation of all time: The prospect of playing symmetrical positions with one or two tempi less was 36 sufficient for it to be considered unplayable.

Only the Italo-Hungarian Bela Toth played it in those years, after which it began to appear in the repertoires ofYusupov, Karpov, Hort, Hubner and other champions. From the beginning of the s the Petroff Defence has been appreciated as one of the most effective means of drawing with the black pieces - especially by top-level players. The Petroff is often called the Russian Defence.

Alexander Petroff, who popularized it at the beginning of the 19th century, and Carl Jaenisch, who also contributed a great deal to its development, were both Russians. At the beginning of the 20th century the American Frank Marshall believed in the validity of several lines where Black plays very aggressively. This makes you reflect on the common notion that certain openings are always solid and passive by nature, whereas others are always dynamiC and aggressive. Fortunately, the possibility of personal interpretation in so many openings is so great that there is always room for creative play.

Now we will have a close look at some speCific variations. After the defence of the e4-pawn with 3. For this reason, if White wishes to travel along more promising paths, there remain effectively two alternatives: Petroff Defen ce A 3. Black has three continuations: Yet it is a part of chess theory and is even dignified with a name: However, against correct play White will have his work set out for him trying to find sufficient compensation for the sacrificed piece. It is worth noting that if the knight S. Now the critical line appears to be 9.

However, the dS-pawn is defended by the queen, and Black does not have to move his pawn to c6 when White plays c4. This was considered the best response in the s, but 38 now it is less common than the previously examined alternative. Viswanathan Linares 11 1. Domenico Lorenzo Ponziani, from the Italian town of Modena, analysed various important lines in the 18th century.

He was also a member of the Pope's inner circle. The c2-c3 push is logical in that it supports d2-d4. But it has two drawbacks: Black's two best responses are V ,, , Now we have a chaotic situation, but Black probably has a satisfactory pOSition and he may even have the upper hand. In the standard Scotch Game, White takes on d4 with the f3-knight.

If you wish to be more aggressive, you can sacrifice a pawn for quick development by playing 4. Black's best option is S If on the fifth move White plays 5. It can be met by d4xc3 S. Odessa m In this line, most players would prefer to be White. In conclusion, these gambits are dangerous against an unprepared opponent.

However, against correct play, not only does White not gain anything, he often has difficulty even to maintain equality. Miles,Anthony Nunn,John Islington jr 5 1. Salamanca, Madrid 6. Malang simul 36 ] Kovacs, ' Baja ] 6. This is the reason why Scotch lines often have great positional tension: We will begin with the three minor variations: This opening has had many highs and lows over the years. After its employment by Jacques Mieses and Savielly Tartakower at the beginning of the 20th century.

Another extraordinary example of a completely reassessed opening. Today the Scotch Game, along with the Ruy Lopez, is considered to be the only serious attempt for White to gain an advantage after l. In a certain sense 3. Therefore, in a certain sense the Scotch Game is a gambit! However, the pawn comes at too high a price, and this variation remains a rarity. The best line for White is probably 5. It is not clear if this is the case, but at least in this way Black succeeds in avoiding many highly theoretical lines.

Then the move 6. Ugly, as it blocks the bishop's view from cI, but quite effective. Black has easy development, but the doubled pawn on the c-file will give White a favourable endgame. This is a recurrent theme in open games. Practice seems to slightly favour White. In both cases there is complex play with chances for both sides.

This becomes clear when you consider that both White and Black can castle either short or long, and that the pawns on eS and c4 are weak but they also have the potential to stifle the opponent, who is rather lacking in space. In short, a typical position where the stronger player should win. This also holds true because opening theory has not explored all the available possibilities yet and therefore there is still room for creative play.

Black now plays S. Black encourages White to push the pawn to eS, hoping to then undermine the centre. If White decides not to jump to the bait, he can continue with S. E1 even if it locks in his own f8 -bishop. However, White must imprison his own bishop, too. Lausanne 3 ' , 1. If Black is not pleased by the prospect of playing the somewhat sterile positions that ensue, he can try It is worth mentioning the minor variation 4. However, by far the most frequent continuation is: Then it all but disappeared until the s and '90s, when it made a hesitant comeback, its chief use being to avoid highly theoretical lines.

Black has few problems achieving equality if White plays 4. That fact that Black has few problems is not surprising, as practice has taught us that if White wishes to gain a significant advantage in dIe open games he must usually occupy the centre with pawns. However, this is rarely possible without the support of the c3-pawn: Now, unlike in the RUy Lopez, the e4-pawn is defended, and therefore the threat 5. Black can respond in two completely different ways. However, in this case the attack is specifically aimed at bS and, above all, the presence of the knight on c3 renders a capture on d4 unwise.

Moreover, it prevents the pawn push c2-c3.

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It maintains the pin on the d7-pawn and reduces the impact of Black's counterplay with.. Now Black usually makes a positional sacrifice of a pawn in one of two ways: Now we reach a strategically complex position in which White has good control of the centre and the bishop pair, while Black has a solid position with good endgame prospects. It would appear that this move contravenes the general principles of opening theory, which always advise against moving the same piece twice in the 50 Four Knights Opening White's kingside is a little exposed and White now plans to protect it with 9.

Opening the game and putting his trust in his superior development, his control of the e-file and White's weakly-defended king. The position after lO.

Chess Openings- Dutch Defense

We are not suggesting for a moment that such general strategic guidelines are no longer valid. It is just that they should never again be viewed as the Word of God. A move which began to become popular, even at higher levels, at the beginning of the new millennium: Dogmatism is truly a thing of the past! It usually leads to strategic plans typically associated with the Philidor Defence or the Steinitz Variation of the Ruy Lopez: Black has a solid position but without any real prospects.

After the natural d7-d6 4. It is worth remembering that Let's go back a little, so as to explain the idea behind the Hungarian Defence. The development of the c4-bishop on the 3rd move, even if slightly inconsistent with the previous move, was one of the primary moves in the early development of opening theory.

The vulnerability of the f7 -square and related tactics have attracted and delighted players and chess scholars for centuries. Such is the brilliant quality of the playing style so closely associated with the Romantic era. But the advent of the Positional School and the realisation that Black has nothing to fear from the most violent lines, directed White's attention towards the RUy Lopez and also towards the Scotch; openings that are configured with a more correct strategic concern in mind: Why play the Hungarian? The answer is simple: Evans Gambit Evans Gambit 1.

However, with the development of more sophisticated defensive techniques at the beginning of the 20th century its popularity waned rapidly. To understand why, just look at the impact made by the Lasker Defence, where Black returns the pawn in exchange for a promising endgame. As a result of this defence many a white player has lost his taste for this romantic style of play. Even if later on a method was devised to avoid the Lasker Defence, the Evans Gambit remains chiefly the property of correspondence players and is rarely seen in grandmaster tournament games.

Later, in the s, Kasparov, the great scholar of opening theory, won a couple of brilliant victories employing the Evans. This led to a partial rebound in the popularity of the Evans Gambit. Now the idea behind the gambit becomes clear; White wants to play an Italian Game with an extra tempo. However, Kasparov's introduction of 7. But Black's principal alternative remains 5.

White's best continuation is to immediately push the pawn to d4, given that 6. In so doing, Black is left with a superior pawn structure. Now the main line is d7-d6 In order to recapture with the knight. The following line has recently become popular: Jeroen Amsterdam Euwe-mem 2 ,1. St Petersburg 1 1. Riga Tal mem 4 1. L was better] Mariotti. The reason why this opening is called the Giuoco Piano is clear: White does not seek to ambitiously conquer the centre with c2-c3 and d2 -d4.

Instead, he contents himself with slow, natural piece development: In some lines White puts off ltJc3, reserving the option of c2-c3 in order to calmly prepare the d2-d4 pawn advance, with slow manoeuvring play. Sometimes the name Giuoco Pianissimo in Italian: In the Giuoco Piano both players have equal opportunities. The main line is considered to be ltJgB-f6 4. In these variations, which frequently feature castling on opposite sides, beginners will be wise to remember the old maxim: In other words, if Black wishes to avoid unpleasant assaults by White, it is advisable to wait and see where the latter castles, so as to castle on the same side!

Another common system also features White moving the pawn to c3. IiJg8-f6 Black attacks the weak point in White's position, namely the e4-pawn, which can no longer be defended by 1iJc3 , and concedes the centre in exchange for good piece play. Black's best continuation In the Italian Game White plans to rapidly occupy the centre with c2-c3 and d2-d4, with the advantage, compared to the Ponziani Opening, of gaining a tempo by attacking the bishop on c5.

Indeed, if Black responds with the passive Black can fight against White's plan with two very different strategic set-ups: It has a fascinating history: In the Lasker match mentioned before, Steinitz tried - with little success - to breathe new life into the Greco Variation by playing the dubious I 0.

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Fortunately, the renewed interest for this line led to Moller's extraordinary discovery of 9. However, in the in s there was yet another development: The resulting position is not so clear. However, White's position continues to be viewed with some scepticism. However, more often than not he opts for the solid 7. White has more active pieces and a slight initiative. Hastings 10 1. Mate would have followed in 10 moves: U,ac1 - lbf4 Two Knights Defence l. I, which allows 4,..

In the 19th century it was adopted chiefly as a means of avoiding the much-feared consequences of the then reigning Evans Gambit. Why was it used just as an expedience in the past, given its popularity today? It should be remembered that even though I, but at this point either 6.

It is in line with the modern tendency to play 3. It is solid, even if slightly passive, and it generally leads to positions which are strategically similar to the Closed Spanish. You may be wondering why The answer is that in the Two Knights after 5. Two Knights Defence 81 5. With the g7-pawn defended, 6. Black obtains satisfactory play after either the solid Black can respond S Another response is the more ambitious 5. After th e virtually forced 'il;YdS-d5 It is surprising that with such active pieces White does not obtain anything after A 'beginner's move', huffed Tarrasch, who was famous for such dogmatic dismissals.

This is the Traxler Variation or Wilkes-Barre for the Americans , and it dates back to the end of the 19th century. Black seems to have sufficient counterplay, even if a hundred years of analysis has not fully explored the resulting positions.

Let's just say that in practice it is easier to play the black side. It must be said that White, in addition to having an extra pawn, should be able to take advantage of the unhappy position of the black king on e7 if he can playa well-timed c3 and d4. However, today it must be treated with respect: If White doesn't want to lose another tempo after 9. Remember that White is a pawn up and that With his bishop pair and the weak c6-pawn, White can look to the future with confidence.

Black's best option is to ignore the tOh3 and continue development with The most common 9th move, however, remains 9. Black has compensation which is difficult to evaluate. Nakanlura,Hikaru' , Ganguly,Surya Shekhar. Khanty Mansiysk l. Canal,Esteban ; , Monticelli,Mario Venice 1. However, this puts White in the most favourable position for expanding in the centre with d4.

An alternative for Black in modern variations is to free himself of the annoying white bishop with It is important to understand what the negative positional aspects are of this preventive measure to defend the e5 -pawn with a queenside expansion. Let's compare the following two diagrams: In his study he demonstrated that A conclusion repeated by Philidor two centuries later! With this information in mind, Black has a wide choice of playable lines.

In this light, it has been correctly noted that the Ruy Lopez is quite literally a 'threatening' opening: For this reason, at some point Black will have to defend the e5-pawn by moving The first diagram shows the pOSition in the Ruy Lopez after The second shows the classical position after 3. If you see 67 Chess Opening Essentials - Volume 1 the opening as a simple process of developing the pieces you will choose the first; Black has gained space on the queens ide and is ready to continue developing with However, this is not the best choice! Actually, chess opening theory assigns to White the advantage in the first position and equal possibilities for both players in the second.

Because on b3 the bishop denies Black various tactical resources. One example is that in response to the natural However, the real problem is the b5 -pawn: This consideration could seem esoteric, but for proof of its practical importance look at the following diagram: Black is a pawn down, but he has a dangerous initiative on the kingside: White's only resource is the advance a2-a4; and he hopes that energetic counterplay on the queenside will make it impossible for Black to realize his aggressive plans on the other side of the board.

If Black could play the pawn from b5 to b7! Ruy Lopez without 3. We will look at that move later. Let's begin with the variations without This re duces Black's possibilities of counterplay. White has a good space advantage, greater control of the centre and access to the f5 -square; giving him good kingside prospects.

This is not to say that Black's position is lost, only that it offers no exciting prospects. The Steinitz is solid, but a little passive. In modern times it was reused by Bent Larsen, but it has never become popular. You reach a position not usually associated with the Ruy Lopez after 70 eSxd4 S. Black has free play and the bishop on b5 seems to be a little out of play: The reali ty is that after This is often called the Smyslov Variation.

It remains a solid and reliable defence. Usually White gains central space with 4. This is one of the oldest responses, which is hardly surprising given how natural it is for Black to play However, a natural move is not necessarily also the best. Here the problem is evident. By placing the bishop on this square Black encourages White to occupy the centre with c3 followed by d4. An attentive reader may well ask: The answer is that with the white bishop on c4 instead of b5 there are two differences: Strategically, the bishop on b5 is applying pressure on the c6-knight; thematically, the idea is to apply pressure on the centre.

Tactically, in some lines White has the extra resource of 4Jxe5 followed by the fork on d4, a motif that is obviously not available with the bishop on c4. White does not have an easy time exploiting his positional advantage. However, there is an important difference with the Closed Spanish: This is not to say that this placement of the dark-squared bishop is without negative aspects: The ensuing complications seem to favour White, considering that F f7-f5 This is the popular and feared Jaenisch Gambit also called the Schliemann Defence by some opening experts.

It is perhaps not completely sound. However, its appeal continues to attract a host of amateur and correspondence players, while players on the professional tour72 nament circuit tend to regard it with a certain scepticism. It is true that if White knows all the complications of the main lines, he is sure to gain a concrete advantage. Otherwise he will be lucky to get out alive, as the unprepared player must work his way through the labyrinth of tactical and strategiC complications presented by the gambit.

Black, in the spirit of the King's Gambit, immediately counterattacks the e4-pawn, relying on the fact that 4. Radical attempts, such as 4. In the end, people realized that White's best plan is simply to develop, relying on the fact that the move f5 is not a developing move and that it also weakens the kingside. In this light 4.


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This counterattack on g2 is the most popular. Attacking e4 and defending bS and indirectly - g 2 at the same time. This has the advantage of immediately threatening This is the idea of9. II and White has a clear advantage, even if the battle is not over yet. It suddenly became fashionable at the end of the 20th century chiefly thanks to its adoption by Kramnik in his victorious match against Kasparov. Like the Petroff Defence, it is considered to be one of the best ways to 73 Chess Opening Essentials - Volume I draw as Black against very strong opponents, presuming of course that you have mastered the required technique.

The queens are exchanged very early on and often quickly an endgame is reached, where White's superior pawn structure is not at all easy to exploit. It is for this reason that some have christened it the Berlin Wall! It is a consoling thought that this symbol of the Cold War now only exists on the chessboard.

White wants to open the e-file: At this pOint, after 6. If White wants to obtain anything he must give up his bishop pair and accept a queen trade-off. The most active square for the knight. As in the Exchange Variation, here too the pawn ending is technically winning for White, given the doubled pawn on c6. However, Black's bishop pair and unhindered development make White's task of exchanging all the pieces very arduous. Here too, Black has the added advantage that the pawn on eS supplies Black with outposts on f4 and d4. This makes it easier to block White's kingside pawn majority.

At the same time the number of black victories is obViously well below average. Ruy lopez withou t Rudolf Warsaw 01 16 , '. Moscow Aeroflot Open 3 1. The philosophy behind the Berlin is very hazardous: I will accept doubled pawns, I will give my opponent space and a lead in development, but!!! I have my bishop pair and my hope is that White's centre will be overextended. The result is a draw rate which is much higher than average.

Some variations of the Ruy Lopez can also be recommended, such as the Jaenisch Gambit, which was examined in the previous section on the Ruy Lopez without In the RUy Lopez with 3,. Neither should those of several variations of the Open Spanish. So now we have the most common move, Before continuing with his development, Black prefers to reserve the option of pushing the pawn to b5, so as to rid himself of the irritating pressure being applied on the c6-knight by White's bishop. The most popular of the various responses to 3,.. This does not mean that the exchange on c6, which we will discuss in the next section, is to be underestimated, even though it has been dismissed by many as toothless.

Nonetheless, some of the most famous white victories in the Ruy Lopez have been scored with this very variation, such as those of Lasker against Tarrasch and Capablanca, and more recently some brilliant victories with it by the 11 th World Champion, the American Bobby Fischer.

White usually retreats the bishop to a4, but 4. After decades of stagnation, it became celebrated again through Fischer's successful employment of it during the s. In the new millennium it still has its adherents. You may think that White's only winning strategy would be winning the pawn endings that the variation produces.

However, variations characterized by opposite castling are not rare, and in these cases the predominate concern is the attack on the king. In the past, at this point either 5. Depending on the circumstances, White keeps the possibility of the d4 pawn advance, with or without a preparatory c2-d, or the option of simply plonking the pawn solidly on d3.

If we can trust the statistics, the results with at least five alternative variations are more or less the same. We will ignore the minor lines that appear to be of doubtful merit. The following variations are in ascending order of popularity: In addition, the knight is ready to go to the excellent square g6, or at times to c6. In the event of 6. Black would be in a crlSlS situation But now it is time for White to play energetically avoid 1O.

It seems logical but after to pin the f3 -knight, With this move, White seeks to exploit his lead in development, effectively threatening to take the bishop on g4 for example, However, chess theory is constantly evolving: If this proves to be true, the S An interesting way to try and exploit the exposed position of the queen on d6 is 6. Black tries to maintain the outpost on eS. At this stage White can choose to simplify with 7. However, this small plus is difficult to exploit. Alternatively, he could continue more ambitiously with 7.

GerinanyWchm 1 1. Lasker;s idea ' was to exploit Chess Opening Essentials - Volume I ,. Teimour " Harikrishna,Pentala Cap d'Agde rapid 2 1. Ruy Lopez - Minor Variat io ns af te r 4. When White continues with the normal 4. Against what is in effect a Jaenisch Deferred, we have the following very strong continuation: Along the lines of the Falkbeer with reversed colours see King's Gambit in which Black has difficulty undermining the eS -pawn.

Moscow Candidates' final 19 74 2 0 '1. Ruy lopez Steinitz Defence Deferred 1. Unlike in the normal Steinitz with Black here has a sly tactical motif at his disposal that changes the strategic direction of the whole system. If White continues with the normaI5. He does not need to fear the weakening of the light squares, as he is the one with the light-squared bishop. This is why White usually proceeds with 5. Now Black has two continuations that are of a very different nature: A he will be forced to sacrifice a pawn with 8.

Ruy Lopez - Steinitz Defence Deferred 6. White can frustrate Black's plan with the annoying h4-h5. The other option is to change the nature of the position with 7. Aioriian,Levon ; Yandemirov,Valery '. Sochi tt 4 ;1. Otherwise, he can continue with the classical 6. Jose Raul Budapest 6.

Wh1 85 Chess Open inn Essentials - Volume Victor Varna 01 8 1.

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However, the immediate The two variations are similar, in that they both aim for more active play, even if by nature this involves taking more risks than with the Closed Spanish. Both bishop moves have good and bad points, and it is therefore difficult to decide which of the two is better: The bishop on b7 allows This robs the b 7-bishop of much of its effectiveness and avoids a lot of theory. However, the critical line remains 7. White's centre is impressive, but it also runs the risk of collapsing. For this reason White usually reinforces the centre. The problem is that White, not having played: The modern treatment involves a direct 6.

At this point the most popular move is S. Now Black sacrifices a pawn with A strategically and tactically rich position for both sides: Leipzig m 4 gS l'4. Adolf Paulsen,Louis " " Fischer. Schlechter,CarI Buenos Airei 12 " ;"1. White is better off. In view of the weak e4-pawn and his more active pieces it is safe to say that Whlte's two minor pieces are stronger than Black's rook and two pawns. Siegbert Tarrasch dogmatically declared it to be the only way for Black to obtain a good position. However, though it has always had many supporters, the Open Spanish has never been as popular as the Closed.

Its most illustrious modern advocate is the Russo-Swiss champion Viktor Kortchnoi. Attempting to open the e-fUe is without doubt a good idea with an adversary's knight on e4. The Riga Variation, though sometimes played, is undoubtedly favourable for White: Wxh2 90 So Black is virtually forced to weaken his queenside. The d4-square is often occupied by the f3 -knight. In addition the move lLlf3-d4 clears the way for White's kingside pawn majority and the pawn advance f4-fs can be devastating.

Needless to say, Black has his resources. His pieces are active, the eS-pawn is weak, and his counter play against f2 could become unpleasant, especially after.. At this point White can choose between three main alternatives: White does not vacate the c2-square for his bishop for now, but instead immediately attacks the outpost on e4. As a result, the thematic move has always been considered to be d5-d41?

White clears the d I-square for his rook in order to apply immediate pressure on the dS -pawn. It received its most famous seal of approval with Kasparov's famous victory over Anand in the World Championship. The idea is to vacate the f3-square for the white queen, with the threat of tLlxf7. Taking the undefended knight with ';lYd8xg5 The line previously thought to be safer, Now Black, as is often the case in the Spanish, has to decide whether to place the bishop solidly on e7 or aggressively oneS.

Ruy Lopez - Open Variation C1 i. This is the most played, and probably the move which is most in the spirit of the Open Spanish, even if it is not necessarily the strongest reply. The price you pay to apply pressure on f2 and have an active position, is that it facilitates the common white manoeuvre tbbl-d2-b3: Black can only obtain adequate counterplay by opening the f-file: Black's pressure is such that White usually concedes a pawn to open up the game with Wg 1, and now the endgame that follows after This is presumably because it is easier to push a mass of passed pawns forward than to achieve a harmonious coordination of White's minor pieces.

The most played of the three alternatives in modern times. Black does not fear conceding the loss of his dark-squared bishop.


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  • It pays not to be too dogmatic. At times it is okay to give up the dark-squared bishop. I, after which there is no further counterplay on a lDb3, leaves White with the advantage after Nowadays it is very rare, but this is a question of fashion, not objective inferiority, given that there are no known refutations. At this pOint, in the past the critical variation, which contains an incredible hidden Black sacrifice, was IS.

    Black, who must play actively, threatens White occupies this square first with The question now is: The answer is The strange make-up of the opposing forc es is something that you do not see every day: Who is better off? This line was first played in , and no one is really any the wiser after more than 60 years! There is an interesting story relating to this variation: The theory until the move However, Isaac Boleslavsky was the first to appreciate the potential of Two years later in , a radio match was organized as part of the end-of-war celebrations: The convincing win by the Soviets came as a great surprise: On second board Vasily Smyslov found himself facing Samuel Reshevsky.

    In their first game Smyslov had the white pieces, and Reshevsky allowed him to employ this very variation, which was so well known to the Soviet players and completely unknown to the Americans. As a result Smyslov was able to beat his formidable opponent with unusual ease. This demonstrates how slowly news of chess developments spread in the days before the Internet.

    It is understandable that White would want to seek an advantage without all these fireworks. Nova Gorica ] 2S Alexander Ponomariov,Ruslan ,'; Metger,Johannes. Grischuk-Anand, Wijk aan Zee 2S. Ac2 " f5 Wg1 b4 ' 37JU In addition to the main continuation 6. The game is characterized by a slow positional struggle with opportunities for both sides; at times transposing to the Anti-Archangel, or the Anti-Marshall, in which White plays the solid d3.

    White defends e4 with the queen so the rook can have the dl-square, thus making the pawn moves to c3 and d4 more effective. This plan is highly logical and dangerous, and Black's best way to counter would seem to be to play in the spirit of the Marshall: At this point, 9. Therefore White falls back on 9. White has some kingside prospects, while Black has good central control. It seems to go against common sense to take on c6 after having lost a tempo with the retreat to a4.

    However, in comparison with the exchange on the 4th move, the situation is different. The consequence of this is that Black also has to lose tempi in order to harmonize his position. It should be stressed that the percentage of draws with this variation is unusually high, and thus it could be an optimal choice for white players against stronger opponents.

    Screenshots

    Apart from the rare I To head into the so-called Closed Spanish with Black sacriHces the eS-pawn for a strong attack against the white king. The story goes that Marshall kept the idea of this pawn sacriHce secret for years, saving it up for a future encounter with Capablanca. He played it against him New York in the hope of ruining the young Cuban's growing reputation.

    However, Capablanca met the prepared variation with sangfroid. He found the best moves over the board, 'refuting' the surprise weapon and winning. The refutation was so convincing that the original move of the American player II Almost one hundred years of attempting to refute the Marshall have not borne fruit. Indeed, the results of hundreds of games demonstrate that the Marshall Attack is one of Black's best systems. Certainly the fordng nature of the line, in which a good memory is more important than creative play, is not to all black players' tastes. It also does not appeal to some because there are various lines in which White can force an early draw.

    As a consequence, this aggressive gambit is ironically seen by many professional players as a good way to get a draw against players of their own strength, while preferring the Closed Spanish when looking for a win against weaker players. However, we should take one step back: Among these is Garry Kasparov, who after The most traditional Anti-Marshall line begins with 8.

    During the s, the most popular response to the a4 pawn advance was If instead Black prefers the positions ariSing from the closed systems and does not like the Anti-Marshall systems, he will usually play Kasparov's move White's win rate was good. However, also in this case opinions have changed, and the alternative move Another quick look at some of the subtle psychology that occurs in practical modern chess: However, if Black likes the pOSitions that arise by employing Anti-Marshall lines , he can set off a smokescreen by beginning with The dS-knight is en prise and needs to be either moved or defended, after which the white rook will be exposed, which facilitates Black's counterplay.

    When the variation was first introduced, Ruy Lopez - Marshall Attack It has been used since the end of the s - after Marshall first played his attack it took some twenty years to find the best move! In our age of the Internet and Fritz it could take as little as 20 minutes! This is not often played, but the results with it are encouraging. For years, at this point people have almost exclusively played White seeks counterplay on the queenside, and now, after However, the general opinion is that the positions are dynamically balanced.

    Recently, in the diagrammed position the move The idea is to get rid of the intruder on h3 with the follow-up.!: Black prevents this with This pawn cannot be captured, because after Here White makes an energetic exchange sacrifice with Black can either accept this or refuse with After either of these options the position is difficult to assess. Even after this short introduction you have probably already realized that the Marshall is alive and kicking. It is therefore fully understandable why many white players try to avoid it altogether.

    New York 19 I 8 1. O-O Ae7 6Jle1 bS Viswanathan Cap d'Agde rapid 3 1. Vasily Sudak 9 1. Ruslan Anand, Viswanathan Linares 14 1. Let's stop to look at the real reasons for White's last move, given the worrying fact that so many opening books do not explain the thinking behind it. However, the real reason is highly tactical. The most natural would appear to be the immediate 8. So as not to lose the bishop, the gambit continuation lO.

    It gives some compensation, but probably not enough. Now we can understand in what sense 8. It is worth mentioning the interesting possibility to get off the beaten path by proceeding to a direct occupation of the centre with 9. Black already threatens 1O However, White has resources with which he can liven up the game. This can be done in two ways: At this point Black concedes the centre, in order to attack it next with It gains space and closes the centre, giving Black a free hand on the flanks.

    This is the most solid and the most popular move: White wishes to prevent This is the initial position of the Closed Spanish, the most popular system of all the open games and a chapter of fundamental importance in the history of chess openings. The number of arrows in the diagram shows the unusually high number of moves which can be played by Black, which is testimony to how flexible his position is.

    The subsequent game is usually characterized by heavy manoeuvring, with possible complications being played out at a later stage in the game. Now we will have a quick look at Black's options, in ascending order of popularity: White cannot support the pawn chain widl c3-c4, as he can in other variations, and must therefore take on c6. D Black's intention is gaining space on the queenside and also exchanging off White's light-squared bishop.

    Here also, the idea is to play Sometimes the knight goes to b6 with The knight is certainly better placed on b6 than on as. Black's two last moves were non-developing and White profits from this with the thematic At this point Black usually responds with U8-e8 but if the truth be told, White's mobile centre seems to be more of a strength than a weakness. Here we have a set-up which tries to prevent the manoeuvre li: It should now be noted that if White plays If Black does not want the draw that would occur if he repeats the move After the usual Black usually responds with the violent Here, White can choose between two very different plans: White defends the e4-pawn, but above all prepares d4-d5 followed by b2-b3 and c3-d, to keep the pawn chain intact when Black attacks its head with White's centre will collapse, after which the b7 -bishop becomes active and Black's mass of centre pawns can begin to march down.

    Black's problem is the safety of his king: The manoeuvre tLlh2-g4, the l:! Some of the best examples are to be found in the historic Kasparov-Karpov matches. We are yet to hear the last word on these variations, but OIl the whole the results favour White. It will give you hints, explanations and show you even striking refutation of the mistakes you might make. Advantages of the program: Lessons offered in the free version is fully functional. They allow you to test the application in real world conditions before releasing the following topics: Iljin Genevsky system Four knights' game King's indian defense Four pawns' attack Old indian defense Queen's gambit accepted Queen's indian defense Queen's pawn game Steinitz defense deferred Three knights' game Two knights' defense Explica como conseguir ventaja en el juego.