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B 22

1 . e4 cS 2. c3 ltJf6 3. eS ltJdS
4 5 6 7
1 ttJf3 b4 *
e6 *
2 c4

3 ttJa3

4 g3

5 j,c4

6 d4 j,c4 *
cd4 *
7 �d4

8 cd4 �c4
d6
9 ttJf3

10 ttJf3
d6
11 cd4 �g5 *
e6 b6 *
12 ttJbd2

13 a3

14 �c4

15 Jtd3

16 ttJc3

1. e4 cS 2. ltJf3 ltJc6 3. c3 ltJf6*


4 5 6 7
17 e5 ttJ a3 *
ttJd5 a6
18 j,c4

19 d4 cd4
cd4
20 j,c4

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M USC LE U P
By
_____----.: B
:... .;; I L
U:..;,.; ;;.;: IN
D:..;,.;
�G A RE P E RTO I RE , B22 S I C ! LlAN D E F E N,;;,.;
S E;;..:=;;;;;;;;
;;; ;;;;
;;; ;;;
;;;; ;;;

SICILIAN WITH 2 .C3


Part Y

�e fifth installment in Vassilios Kotronias ' six-part series on the 2.c3


• Sicilian moves into less explored territory, as the author examines a couple
of systems where White delays (or completely omits) the d2-d4 advance in
favor of piece development. The greater part of this article is devoted to the
move 5 . �c4, which has long been a popular and successful alternative to the
standard d2-d4 push. Admittedly, this idea was mainly conceived as a way

1 75
Kotronias

to avoid the sterile main-line theory o f the . . . lZ:Jc6/ . . . lZ:Jb6 lines; however,
even against . . . e6 systems (such as the one Vassilios is proposing) it has
been shown to contain some venom. Thus, it is essential for Black players
to be well prepared against this line.

This is also the proper moment to draw the reader' s attention to a little
move order detail : White often starts with the move 2.lZ:Jf3 and follows
with 3 .c3, trying to trick Black out of certain systems. Such would be the
case here as well, if B lack ' s Sicilian of choice starts with 2 . . . lZ:Jc6; 2 . . .
e 6 3 .c3 lZ:Jf6 would simply transpose to the lines examined i n previous
volumes, but the knight move is a different story altogether, ruling out
all such transpositions. It is against this move order trickery that the last
two parts of Vassilios' effort are directed. True, Black no longer has the
option of playing the . . . e6/ . . . b6 system
that this series is based upon, but the early
Lifelong Sicilian Player inclusion of 2 .lZ:Jf3 lZ:Jc6 opens up new
options - to both players. Of course, 2 . . .
The pedigree of the author speaks volumes d 6 rules out all such concerns altogether,
about what the reader is to expect from these with 3 .c3 lZ:Jf6 being a completely
articles: apart from being a very strong independent system.
and successful active player, GM Vassilios
Kotronias is a highly esteemed author and Before diving into the intricacies of
chess analyst, well known for his deep S . �c4, Kotronias takes a quick look
analytical approach to the opening, who at the rare move S .lZ:Ja3 . White intends
has worked with several top grandmasters, to challenge the lZ:JdS by means of the
such as Veselin Topalov, Alexei Shirov and slow manoeuvre lZ:Ja3 -c4-�3, but a3 is
Nigel Short, as well as a trainer for the not an optimal square for the knight's
Greek national team. His name is associated development. Black' s suggested reaction
with deep opening research, inventive is the prophylactic S . . . a6, intending to
new ideas and an unceasing quest for the gain queenside space with . . . bS and
absolute truth, as can be evidenced from his sideline the knight on a3 ; but the simple
various highly regarded opening works to central counter . . . d6 remains a valid
date. Additionally, he is well known for his option as well. White must proceed with
uncompromising style and fighting spirit. his intended plan without delay, but is
hardly able to trouble Black; simple and
Vassilios' competitive successes include ten direct central play ensures the second
gold medals in the Greek Championships player full equality.
and first places, clear or shared, in several
strong tournaments all over the world, while The move S . ..tc4 has become a major
he has been a member of the Greek national line in its own right, and quite justifiably
team for three decades. Most recently he so; it is an interesting possibility that
won the gold medal on his board in the 20 1 3 leads to dynamic play. Black replies with
European Team Championships i n Warsaw. S . . . lZ:Jb6, when White does best to retreat
He certainly knows what he ' s writing about, to b3 ; the alternative, 6 . ..te2 d6 7.ed6
too: Vassilios has been a lifelong Sicilian eS ! , leads to lines where only Black can
player, and has clearly spent endless hours be better. Black should then play 6 . . . c4,
throughout his career racking his brains over isolating the eS-pawn from the rest of
how to meet the 2.c3 Sicilian in a dynamic its army, and follow up with 7 . ..tc2 g6,
and ambitious way. This series of articles preparing to attack it. Such direct play
represents the result of his most recent forces White to react promptly, so as
efforts on this problem. not to be left behind in the fight for the
initiative. This is best served by playing

1 76
C h ess Informant 123
b2-b3 , either immediately or a bit later; some very fine move order nuances
are explained in the notes. B lack proceeds to liquidate the eS-pawn with
. . . d6 or . . . dS , opening up the centre.

The critical position of this article arises after 8 .b3 dS 9.ed6 '&Id6 1 0.0-0
ilg7 1 1 .lZ:Ja3 cb3 12.ab3 0-0 1 3 .d4 �g4 ! (preparing . . . eS) 14.h3 (netting the
bishop-pair, though other moves are also examined) 14 . . . �f3 I S .'&If3 eS !
1 6.lZ:JbS (the most energetic attempt) 1 6 . . . '&Id7 ! . Black has given up his light­
squared bishop to accelerate his development and engage in battle against
White ' s pawn centre. Pavasovic ' s 17 . .§.d l ! is the only way for the first
player to put any pressure on Black, but after 17 . . . ed4 1 8 . lZ:Jd4 lZ:Jd4 19.cd4
the simple novelty 19 . . . .§.fe8 ! should equalize without undue effort. Overall,
provided that Black is satisfied with sound equality and is not entirely averse
to exchanges and a draw, he faces no theoretical problems whatsoever.

CHAPTER 1 7
Vassilios Kotronias

l .e4 cS 2.lZ:Jf3 lZ:Jc6 3 .c3 lZ:Jf6 4.eS lZ:JdS • Country: G reece


S .lZ:Ja3
• Born : 1 9 64

l .e4 cS 2.lZ:Jf3 lZ:Jc6 3.c3 • Rati n g : 2 5 7 0

• Pea k rati n g : 2 6 2 8 �
---

• Title : G ra nd m a ster s i nce 1 99 0

In this manner, White side-steps the c3


Sicilian variations where Black plays an early
. . . b6. Now Black has to change his strategy.

3 ...lZ:Jf6 This move is good, solid, and reliable. In the present chapter we are going to examine
I have used it over the years with success and this rather weird-looking move. However,
it is by no means inferior to 3 . . . dS , in fact I apart from its surprise value, it is not really
am inclined to describe it as more intriguing. dangerous.
The white e-pawn is tempted to advance, but
in return Black will gain the excellent dS S ... a6! Taking bS under control and preparing
square for his knight. to gain space on the queenside.
[RR S . . . d6 6.ed6 ! Smagin 260S - I . -A. Nataf
4.eS lZ:JdS S.lZ:Ja3 ! ? 2S26, Deutschland 200 1 - 8 1 1 107]

177
Kotronias

of his piece activity;

B) 12.deS ileS ! 1 3 . ttJcd4 (J3.t2Jg5 ttJJ4= is


equal, e.g. 14.ttJe6 ttJe6 15.ile6Je6 16.WtJe2
�c8 1 7.�bl WtJd5 18.b3 �Jd8 19.ile3 WtJd3;
13.ttJe5 ttJe5 14.ilb3 ttJc 7=) ttJd4 14.ttJeS
ttJb4 I S . ile6 ttJe6 16.WtJb3 WtJdS 17.WtJb4
WtJeS 1 8 . WtJb7 ttJd4 with a completely equal
position, a logical conclusion being 1 9.'i!i'h l
�fb8 20.WtJd7 ttJc2 2 1 .�b l ttJa3=;

Finally, 6 . .tc4 e6 7.0-0 also leads to an


approximately balanced game after either
7 . . . ile7= or 7 . . . d6]
6.ttJc4 The knight is heading towards e3 in order
to challenge the ttJdS. Alternatively, there is: 6 ... bS
[6.d4? ! cd4 7 .cd4 d6 ! Black should of course grab the offered space.

7.ttJe3 e6! ? [7 . . . ttJe3 8 . fe3 ! oo is also possible,


reaching a peculiar structure where the
chances seem even.]

8.ttJdS [8.a4 �b8 9.abS abS 1O.ttJdS edS I l .d4


c4 1 2 . ile2 d6 1 3 . 0-0 deS 14.ttJeS ttJeS I S .deS
ilcSoo looks excellent for Black, too.]

8 ... edS 9.d4 d6

A) 8.Ac4, as played in Sanchez Segura -


Deforel, corr. 1994, is best met by 8 ... Ag4!,
highlighting one of the disadvantages of having
the knight on a3 . After 9.h3 (9.Ad5? WtJa5+;
9.0-0?1 de5 10.de5 e6+) AD IO.WtJD e6 1 1 .AdS
WtJaS 12.ild2 WtJdS 13.WtJdS edS 14.ed6 Ad6
IS.ttJc2 0-0-0 Black has a tiny plus in the ending;

B) 8 . Ae2 deS 9 . deS Ag4 ! ? (9 . . . e6=)


1 O . ttJc4 e6 1 1 .0-0 ile7 1 2 . ttJe3 ttJe3
1 3 .Ae3 WtJd l + is slightly better for B lack,
as the eS pawn is vulnerable.
lO.ild3 The most logical move, depriving the
6.ttJc2 ! ? i s logical, trying to bring the knight Ac8 of the nice fS square. Other moves fail to
to the centre before resorting to d2-d4. Play achieve anything:
could continue 6 . . . d6 7.ed6 ! ? ( 7.d4 cd4 [ 1O .a4 b4oo; lO.ile3 c4 ! 1 1 .ile2 ilfS=;
8.ed6 e51 9.ilc4 is just a transposition.) eS ! 1O.ed6 ! ? i.d6 l 1 .dcS i.cS 1 2 . ild3 WtJe7 !
8 . d4 cd4 9.ilc4 ! (9.cd4 e4+) Ae6 ! 10.0-0 1 3 .WtJe2 WtJe2 14.'i!i'e2 occurred in Baklan
(J0.t2Jg5 Ad6 11 .ttJe6Je6+) Ad6 I I .cd4 0-0 2SS2 - Degraeve 2S36, France 1 999, when
best was 14 . . . 0-0 ! l S .�d l h6 16.b4 (J6.ilc2
A) 1 2 .ttJgS �c8 1 3 .WtJd3 (J3.ttJe6 Je6+) g6 �e8 1 7.'i!i'Jl ile6=) i.e7 17.a4 i.f6 1 8 . ild2
14.ttJe6 fe6 slightly favours B lack because �b8 19.'i!i'fl ( J9.h3 d4=) i.g4 20 . .te2 �fd8

1 78
C h ess Informant 123

2 1 .abS abS 22.§ac 1 d4 2 3 . cd4 (23.tiJd4 tiJd4 I like this move more than S . . . e6 because it gains
24.�g4 tiJb3=) tiJd4 24.tiJd4 §d4 2 S . �g4 time and avoids the shutting in of the �c8.
§g4 26.f4 i/.. e 7 27.g3 §g6 28 .§c7 �f8
29.�c3 §a6 30.1 ldd7 §a2=] 6.�b3 Allowing . . . c4 with gain of tempo, but
nevertheless the most critical continuation.
After 1O.i/.. d3 Black can borrow a theme from White plans to liquidate the black pawn once
the Open Spanish by quickly developing his it reaches c4 and subsequently obtain a strong
queenside: pawn centre.
[The alternative retreat 6.�e2 is harmless for
10 ... c4 1l.i/.. c 2 �g4 12.0-0 deS 13.deS �e7 B lack due to 6 . . . d6 7.ed6 eS !
14.�f4 'l?Sfd7! IS.h3 i/.. h S 16.§el §d8! =

CONCLUSION
S.tiJa3 is a choice of development that should
not worry Black as White' s plan to challenge
the tiJdS involves the time-consuming
manoeuvre tiJc2(c4)-e3 ; A good reaction to it is
the prophylactic S . . . a6, intending to gain space
on the queenside by . . . bS or simply to play . . . d6,
according to circumstances. In this chapter
Black achieves full equality by adhering fIrst
and foremost to the theme of centralisation.
Kotronias
. . . when he effortlessly obtains good control
of the centre and at least equal chances. Then:
CHAPTER 1 8
A) The restrained 8 . d3 is hardly the type of
l .e4 cS 2 .tiJf3 tiJc6 3 .c3 tiJf6 4.eS tiJdS move that will secure an edge for White; after
S . �c4 8 . . . �d6 9.0-0 0-0 1 O . a4 tiJdS I l .tiJa3 b6
12.§e l (I2.tiJc4 �c 7+) §e8 he is actually
struggling to equalise:
l .e4 cS 2.tiJf3 tiJc6 3.c3 tiJf6 4.eS tiJdS S.�c4
This is the main alternative to the more
natural S . d4; before initiating action in the
centre White forces his opponent to make up
his mind regarding the future of the tiJdS .

S ... tiJb6

i AI) White gets the inferior game after


i 1 3 .'l?Sfb3 ? ! �f8
: A l a) 14.tiJc4 §b8 ! I S .tiJgS h6 1 6 . tiJe4
: �e6 1 7.�f3 (I 7.'l?Sfb5 ? tiJcb4! 18.cb4
: tiJb4 - +) 'l?Sfc7 1 8 . 'l?Sfc2 §bd8'+;
: A l b) 14.tiJgS tiJaS I S .'l?Sfa2 h6 1 6 . �f3
: �b7 1 7 . tiJe4 tiJc7'+ in Hj artarson 2S9S -
: H. Olafsson 2 S 3 S , Iceland 1 994;

179
Kotronias

: A2) The best thing I can see for White is i This is the star move, taking away the c2
1 l3 .tbgS ! ? .te7 14 . .tf3 ! .tgS IS . .tgS, at 1 square from the white queen. Now White has
I least obtaining something concrete in the tried several moves in his effort to complete
: form of the bishop pair; however, after I S . . . f6 his development but the evaluation remains
I 1 6 . .td2 .te6= Black' s light square control unshakable: Black is at least equal.
: and strong pawn centre outweigh this factor. : B2a) 14.�d2 Wic7 IS .g3 �ad8 16.Wic 1

I
: �fe8 17.ilgS happened in Morales Pecino
B) �fter ? d4 cd4 9 .cd4 Black has two good : - Asturiano Molina, COrT. 2007, and here
contmuatlOns: : both 17 . . . �b8+ and the game's 17 ... �d7+
: give Black a slight advantage; it is difficult
: for White to coordinate his forces and if he
: drops his bishop back to fl then Black may
: contemplate an advance of his h-pawn to h4
: to weaken the white king's defences;
: B2b) 14 . ..ta6?! Wic7 IS .g3 �ad8 16.Wif3
: .1e6 17.ilgS f6 18.i.e3 �fe8 19.�ac 1 tbd7 !
: 20.Wie2? (20.tbb5 tbe5 21 .tbc7 W3 22.�g2
: was probably the only way.) tbeS 21 .Wic2
: ilh3 22.�fdl tbf3 23.�hl WiaS !+ 24.ilc4
: �h8 2S . ..tt7 �e7 26.Wib3 g6 27.i.c4 WihS !
: 28.�d6 �de8 ! 29.tbe2 �e3 30Je3 tbd2
: 3 1 .�f6 tbb3 32.ab3 WieS and 0 : 1 , was a
: Bl) 9 . . . e4 is also good enough. After : catastrophic loss for White in Morales Pecino
1 1 O . tbgS (J O.tbe5 .td6 1 l . tbc6 bc6 12.tbc3 : - Aguiar Garcia, COrT. 2008;
: Wie7°o is more interesting; each side has : B2c) After 14.i.f3 Wic7 IS .g3 �ad8 16.Wie2
1 its trumps in this approximately level �fe8 White is forced to interpose the bishop
I position.) .td6 I l .tbe4 .tb4 1 2 . tbbc3 Wid4 on e3 and this results in a weakening of his
: 1 3 . 0-0 a draw was agreed in Adams 26SS pawn structure: 17.ile3 �cS 18.�adl �e3
1 - Khalifman 263 S , Wij k aan Zee 1 995 - 19.fe3 .te6 20.b3 (Gerard - Schwarz, COrT.
1 62/( 1 46), as the position is rather sterile. 2012) 20 . . . tbd7 !?+;
For example, 13 . . . 0-0 1 4 . .1e3 (J4.a3 �c3 B2d) 14.ilg4!? seeks to trade pieces and
15.tbc3 Wie5=) WieS I S .Wic l ! (J5 . .tb6?! create breathing space for the white queen, but
ab6+) �d8 1 6 . �e 1 ! ? (J6.a3 .tc3 1 7.tbc3 Black should not agree to it. Best is 14 ... �g6!
ile6 18.�el tbd4=) h6 ! 1 7.a3 .tf8=;
B2) 9 . . . ed4 After this move the computers
prefer Black (if only minimally), in spite
of his acceptance of a slight weakening in
his pawn structure. Let us now see what
happens after 9 . . . ed4: 1O.tbd4 .td6 ! I l .tbc6
bc6 1 2 . tbc3 0-0 l 3 . 0-0 iHS !

B2dl) I S .Wif3? ! fS ! 16.ilh3 occurred in


Saulespurens 2384 - Matlakov 2487, Riga
2009, when the engines like 16 . . . Wih4!?
(J6. . . Wic 7 1 7.g3 was unclear in the game.)
17.Wic6 �f6 with pressure for the pawn. A
sample variation is 18.Wif3 �e8 19.ild2

180
C h ess Informant 123

! ilhS 20.'lIUd3 .§d8 2 1 .'lIUe3 (21 .0,d5? .§j7!+) 6 c4 Thematic, trying to isolate the eS pawn
...

: .§g6 22.f4 0,c4 23 .iLe l 0,e3 24.iLh4 .§b8 from the rest of the white army.
: 2S . .§f2 0,g4 26 . .§c2 i.f4 27.i.g4 .§g4
: 28.ilf2= but it is quite likely there is some 7 ilc2 g6 Preparing to pile up on the target.
.

: improvement for Black along the way;


: B2d2) I S .g3 ! 'lIUc7 16 . .§e l (l6.i.h5!?=) S.b3 A radical attempt to get rid of the c4
: .§ad8 17.'lIUe2 fS 18.iLhS .§de8 19.i.e3 pawn, so as to allow his own d-pawn to march
: .§e3 20.fe3 ilg3 2 1 ..§fl ilh2 22.'lIUh2 'lIUh2 forwards and occupy the centre.
23.Wh2 ilhSoo with an unclear ending; this [� dS 9.ed6 'lIUd6 1 O . 0,a3 is j ust a
is probably the best option for White; transposition to the following line;
B2e) 14.g3 The first choice of the engines,
but I prefer the previous line for White. 8 .0,a3 ! ? d S 9.ed6 'lIUd6
After 14.g3 a logical continuation for Black
is 14 . . . il.eS !

. . . gives rise to a position where B lack enj oys


free play and has enough resources to support
lS . .§e l 'lIUf6 16.il.fl .§fe8 17.iLe3 .§ad8 1 8 .'lIUD his c-pawn. For example:
0,d7 ! 19 . .§ac 1 i.c7 20.i.f4 0,eS 2 UteS .§eS+
obtaining very good play due to the bishop pair. A) 10.0-0 ilg7 shouldn't pe problematic for
White's defence is difficult and after committing Black, as White ' s pressure against c4 will

: At) 1 1 .d3 cd3 l 2 . ild3 0-0 (l2 . . . ilg4=)


several inaccuracies he was gradually worn not pay any dividends:
down in a recent correspondence game: 22.ilg2
i.b6 23 .'lIUc6 i.e6 24 . .§fl g6 2S.a3 .§fS 26 . .§c2 I l 3 .'lIUe2 .§d8 l 4 .ile4 ile6= is just level;

: and may in fact be the best way to reach it;


'lIUd4 27.i.D .§cS 28 . .§d l 'lIUd l 29.0,d l .§c6 I A2) l 1 .b3 ! transposes to our 8 .b3 main line
30 . .§c6 i.b3 3 1 ..§c 1 .§d2 32.Wg2 hS 33.h4

: be answered in typical fashion. 1 1 . . . 'lIUe �


Wg7 34.g4 hg4 3S.il.g4 fS 36.il.D Wf6 37.Wfl I A3) 1 1 . 'lIUe2 This threat to the c4 pawn will
ildl 38.ild l .§f2 39.We l .§h2 40 . .§c6 Wg7
41 ..§c4 il.d8 42.i.c2 .§h4 43 .b3 .§c4 44.bc4 I Again this move. l 2 . 'lIUe6 ile6 l 3 .b3 0-0+
: has the superior pawn structure and better
il.e7 4S .a4 Wf6 46.Wf2 gS 47.WD g4 48.Wg2 I and likely B lack will soon be better here; he
f4 and 0 : 1 Benetti - Zilian, corr. 2012]
I development;
I

B) Liquidating the c4 pawn by 1 O . d3 cd3


1 1 .0,bS (l1 . 'lIUd3 'lIUd3 12.ild3 ilg4=) 'lIUb8
1 2 .ild3 ilg7 1 3 .0-0 0-0= is also excellent
for B lack, his kingside pawn maj ority being
an important asset;

C) 1 O . 'lIUe2 A direct attacking try, trying to


catch B lack off guard, but I think he can
easily cope with it. 1 O . . . 'lIUe6 ! ?=

181
Kotronias

the c4 square, but the pawn centre White


obtains as a result of this concession is
rather loose and by no means any guarantee
of an advantage.

1l ... cb3 12.ab3 0-0

This is the strongest move, equalising


without difficulty; for example, 1 1 . ct:Jb 5
� e 2 1 2 . �e2 .§.b8 ! 1 3 . ct:J c 7 ( J 3 . b3 a 6)
�d7 ! 1 4 . ct:Jb 5 e 5 1 5 . b 3 f5 ! 1 6 .bc4
a6 1 7 . ct:Ja3 e4i and B lack even has a
slight initiative. 8 . 0-0 �g7 9 . He l d6
l O . ed6 �d6 1 1 . ct:Ja3 0-0 looks inferior
comp ared to the main line, because it' s
not c lear what i s the role o f an early He l
in White ' s set-up. After 1 2 .b 3 ( J 2 . �e2
iLe6 1 3 . b 3 ct:Jb4!�) � e 6 1 3 . ct:Jg 5 ( J 3 . bc4 13.d4 The logical consequence of White' s
ct:Jc4 14.He6 � e 6 1 5 . iL b 3 ct:J 6a 5 1 6. ct:Jc4 play. Initially, the computers are enthusiastic
ct:Jc4 1 7. d3 Hfd8!oo) �d5 1 4 . � g4 (Nunn about the first player' s chances here, but fail
2 6 0 5 - Kramnik 2 7 1 0 , Monte Carlo to evaluate properly Black' s capacity to strike
(rapid) 1 9 94) B l ack should have p l ayed at the enemy centre. '
14 . . . ct:Jb4 ! � with at least equal p l ay. ] [An alternative is 1 3 .ct:Jc4 ! ? ct:Jc4 14.bc4, as
occurred in Vysochin 2558 - A. Bodnaruk
241 7 , Saint Petersburg 20 1 1 .

8 ... d5 ! ? [Not bad, but 8 . . . �g7 ! could well A) That game continued 1 4 . . . �c7 1 5 . d4
be an argument in favour of the 8 . ct:Ja3 ct:Ja5 1 6 . c 5 b6 when, instead of the
move order; as far as I can see White has impulsive 1 7 .Ha5 ? ! oo which rendered
nothing better than 9 .bc4 (9.�e2 d5 1 0 . ed6 the p osition unclear, White could have
ct:Jb4 does look like an issue for White. ) retained the advantage by 17 .He I ! bc5
ct:Jc4 l O . d4 0-0 I l . iLd3 ct:J6a5 1 2 . 0-0 d6� 1 8 .ct:Je5 cd4 1 9 . iL f4 ! i ;
and B lack does not look at all worse to me.]
B) After 1 4 . . . iLe6 ! 1 5 . �e2 �c5 ! ?
9.ed6 �d6 10.0-0 iLg7 1 l .ct:Ja3 ! Now (Another possibility i s 15 . . . ct:Je5 16.ct:Je5
B lack is forced to relinquish his hold over �e5 1 7. �e5 iLe5 18.d4oo/± but White

1 82
C h ess Informant 1 23

I may have a slight initiative in this ending. )


1 6 . laa4 cuaS
Bl) Unclear positions arise after 1 7 . d4
Jtc4 ! 1 8 . dO'S ..te2 1 9 .1aaS iLc3 : For
example, 2 0 . laa2 (20.laa3 ..tb4�;
20.laa4 b5�) iL f1 2 1 . � f1 la fc 8 2 2 . J.. e 3
lac7 2 3 . iLe4 aS� and B lack ' s a-pawn i s
a force that yields g o o d counterplay;
B2) 1 7 . J.. a 3 Wic7 1 8 . c S J.. d S � It is
hard to make a concrete evaluation but
I believe the chances to be dynamically
balanced. ]
A) Bad is I S . . . Wid8? 1 6 . deS Widl 17.Jtdl
cueS 1 8 .CUeS J.. d l 1 9.cug6± and Black will
not have compensation for the pawn;

B) I S . . . Wif6 ! ? can be answered by


I Bl) 16.iLe4 ed4 1 7 . CUbd4 lafd8 1 8 .iLgS
: (J8.iLb2 cud4 19.cd4 cud5oo) WigS 19.cugS
I Jtd l 20.iLc6 bc6 2 1 .laed l cS 22.CUc6 lad l
: 23 .lad l as (23 . . . J.. c 3 24.CUe4oo) 24. c4 a4
I 2S .ba4 h6 26.CUe4 laa4 27.CUe7 �h7 and
I Yz : Yz , is Henris - Cummings, COIT. 2002;
: B2) 1 6 . dS ! iLf3 (J6 . . . laad8!? 1 7.J.. e 4!?
I a6!? requires examination here and could
: well be Black ' s chance to improve.) 1 7.gf3

13 . . . J.. g 4 ! The obvious point, preparing to


strike at the centre by means of . . . e S .

14.h3 This has long been the main line, in


order to gain the always useful bishop pair.
[Alternatively, 1 4 .CUc4 WidS ! does not
offer White anything special, the point
being I S . CUe3 ( I 5 . lae l J..j3 1 6 . Wij3 Wij3
1 7.gf3 cud5 18. J.. d2 lafd8 19. J.. e 4 e 6=
looks quite okay for B lack in view of his
great pawn structure. ) ..t f3 1 6 .cudS ? J.. d l
1 7 . cub6 J.. c 2+;
: . . .andWhite ' s queenside pawn mass
Rozentalis once surprised me with I outweighs his kingside weaknesses.
1 4 .lae l ! ? to which I replied with the meek I Certainly the ensuing positions are obscure,
1 4 . . . lafd8? and soon got the worse position. : and a great deal of research is needed to
Correct is the thematic 1 4 . . . e S ! (I4 . . . lafd8 ? I establish the truth, so for the moment I will
15. CUc4 Wif6 1 6 . ..te4 cud5 (Rozentalis I just present my oid analysis:
25 64 - Kotronias 2 5 7 8 , Montreal 2002) I
1 7. iLd2± is simply better for White as B2a) After 1 7 . . . laad8 ! ? 1 8 .J.. e4 a6
Black has lost his chance to attack the U8 . . . CUe 7 19.c4±; 18 . . . cud5 19.iLd5
enemy centre. ) I S .cubS ! ? ( I 5 . de5 Widl a6 20.CUa3 cue 7 21 .c4 cud5 22.cd5 e4
16 . ..tdl cue5 1 7. CUe5 iLdl = is of course 23.laa2±; 18 . . . Wih4 19.J.. a 3±) 19.CUa3
completely leve l . ) and now B lack must cue7 20.c4 Black should centre his research
choose carefully where to place his queen : on 20 . . . Wih4 ! ?, planning to run wild with

183
Kotronias
,

. . . fS , (as 20 . . . l2lj5 is better for White after : C2b) 17.'�f3 l2leS 1S.'�e2 a6 19.12ld4 l2ldS
21 .l2lc2;;!;); : Black has reached his optimum position. Now
B2b) 1 7 . . . �fdS 1 S .j.e4 ! a6 1 9 . 12la3 ! : the weakness of the c3 pawn forces White to
(J9.l2lc 7 �acB 20.l2leB �e8 21 .dc6 bc6 : navigate with care: 20 . .1b2 ! (Weaker are both
22.�a6 �ed8 23.YJUc2 l2ld5�) l2le7 : 20.j.d2?! �acB 21 .c4 CiJg4!+; and 20.YJUd2?!
(J9 . . . YJUd6 20.l2lc4! l2lc4 21 .bc4;;!;) 20.c4 : l2lc3 21 .YJUc3 l2lc6+) l2lc6 (There is probably
: l2lfS (20 . . . YJUd6 21 .l2lc2t) 2 1 .l2lc2 l2ld7 : nothing better.) 2 1 .l2lc6 YJUc6 22 . .1e4 l2lc3
: 22 .b4i; : 23 . .1c3 YJUc3 24 . ..tb7 �a7 2S . .1a6 YJUb3

I C) We 'll now focus on IS . . . YJUd7 ! :


:
,
,
26 . .1c4 YJUbS 27.�a7 YJUa7=;

: 14.Ae4 was once played by Sveshnikov


: and never repeated.
,

A strong retort, avoiding tactics and stopping


White from obtaining a dangerously mobile
pawn centre. : I think the reason lies in 14 . . . fS !
: (J4 . . . �ad8?! 15.h3 .1e6 [6.�el Ad5
C l ) The weaker 1 6.Aa3 ? ! �fdS 1 7 . deS : E. Sveshnikov 2S70 - Rytshagov 2S2S,
( J 7. ..tc5 ? ! l2ld5!+) l2leS I S .l2leS (J8.YJUd7? : Stockholm 1 997, looks a bit better for
l2l13 19.9f3 Ad7+-) Ad l 1 9 . 12ld7 Ac2 : White after 1 7.l2lc4!?;;!;) 1 S . .1d3 (J5.Ac2
20.l2lb6 ab6+ leads to a position where : l2ld5 16 . ..td2 e5 1 7.l2lc4 YJUc 7i) eS 16.l2lc4
Black ' s bishop-pair might prove to be of : (J6.Ae2 e4 1 7.l2lc4 l2lc4 18 . ..tc4 �h8
maj or significance; : 19.h3 .1h5 20 . .1a3 YJUd7 21 .j.j8 �j8
C2) 16.deS ! Deprived of the possibility : 22.Ae2 e13 23 . .113 .113 24·YJU13 a6+) YJUc7
of dS, White should content himself with : 1 7 . l2lb6 ab6 1S . .1c4 �hS 19.�aS �aS as
equality. 1 6 . . . Af3 ! i only White can be worse here.]

14 . . il.f3 15. YJUf3 e5


.

C2a) 1 7.YJUd7? ! l2ld7 I S .gf3 l2ldeS 19.Ae4


(J9.�g2 �jd8 20.Ag5 l2ld3 21 .Ad3
�d3+) �fdS+;

1S4
C h ess Informant 123

It is important that Black keeps an eye on the


tUb5 . Now we have reached a critical crossroads:

17 .�d l ! An invention of Pavasovic and the


most annoying move to face. White also has
the following choices:
,

[l7.de5? ! surrenders time and space without


getting anything in return; after 17 . . . tUe5 1 8.W/e2
a6 19.tUd4 �fe8+ Black has the initiative.

1 7.ila3 was the main line for a long time


until 1 7 . �d l ! was found. '

Dusko Pavasovic © Harald Fi etz

16.tUbS! White continues energetically.


[ 16.tUc4? ! is , weak due to 1 6 . . . tUc4 1 7.bc4
ed4 1 8 .Aa3 W/c7 19.iH8 �f8+ and Black has A) Possible is 1 7 . . . �fd8 ! ? 1 8 . de5 (I8.'il/dl
more than enough for the exchange; ed4 19.tUd4 tUd4 20.cd4 tUd5oo; 18.i.c5
tUd4! 19.tUd4 ed4 20.cd4 tUd5 21 . i.e4=)
16.de5 W/e5 (6 . . .�d8, tUd5) looks more tUe5 1 9 . W/e2 a6 ! 20.tUd6 (20.tUd4 ? ! tUd5!i
comfortable for Black. For example, 17.Ab2 Xc3, b3, is better for Black.) tUd5 ! (RR
�ad8 18.�ad 1 tUd5 (J8 .. .'il/e8!?) 19.�fe 1 W/f4 20 . . . W/c 7?! Dolmatov 2605 - Yudasin 2 6 1 5 ,
Haifa 1 9 9 5 - 631 1 24)
20.W/f4 tUf4 2 1 .�fl tUb4 ! 22.�d8 �d8 23 .�d l
(\11 : \11 Kunte 2460 - NeeJotpal, 2370, India : AI) 2 1 .c4? ! tUc3 22.W/e3 (22.W/d2 tUc6
(ch) 1998) �d1 24.Ad 1 tUa2 ! ? 25.tUb 1 b5+ and 1 23.�ael b5j) tUc6 ! i (L,23 . . . b5, 23 . . . W/c 7,
I 23 . . . tUd4) gives B lack a strong initiative;
White still has to struggle to achieve the draw.]
: A2) 2 1 .W/d2 ! tUc7 ! (622 . . . tUb5 , 22 . . . tUe8,
16 ... W/d7! I 22 . . . W/h3 ! ?)

i adventures by 22.c4? ! W/h3 !


: A2a) Instead, White got himself into

185
Kotronias

A2 a l ) The correct 2 3 . �gS ! �g4


(23 . . . �c3 24. ile4 li:Je6 25.�h4 �b3
26. fl.jb 1 �c3 2 7.li:Jb 7 fl.d4 28. �b2
�c4 29. ild4 �d4 3 0 . li:Jd6 fl.d8 3 1 . fl.dl
�b6oo) 24 . �g4 li:Jg4 2 S . fl.ad l b6
2 6 . fl.fe l il f8 + would have been only
slightly worse for him;
A2a2) But after 2 3 . f4? he eventually lost
after 23 . . . �h6 ! 24.�e2
A2a21) 24 . . . li:Jf3 ! ! 2S.gf3 (25.�.f3 1i.d4
26.fl.J2 1i.al +; � 1i.al- +) ild4
26.fl.f2 (26.rJiig2 li:Je6 - +) 1i.a l - + would ... when White' s initiative offers him good
have been an immediate crusher; chances to obtain an advantage as the
A2a22) 24 . . . li:Jc6 2S .fl.ad l li:Je6+ in following lines illustrate:
Pavasovic 2S04 M . Tratar 2420, Radenci
-

1998; A) 18 . . . li:Je7? is clearly out of the question in


A2b) 22 .�e2 ! = with equality; view of 19.1i:Jc7 ! �c7 20.d6±;

B) However 17 . . . fl.fc 8 ! is the cleanest B) 18 . . . abS 19.dc6 �c6 (J9 . . . �dl ? 20.�dl
equaliser: fl.al 21 .cb 7 1i.h6 22.1i.h6 fl.dl 23.�dl
fl.b8 24.1i.j3 J5 25.1i.c6 J4 26.g3+ should
-

eventually win for White.) 20.Ji.e4 �c7


2 1 .fl.a8 fl.a8 22.Ji.e3 ! (22.J.. b 7!? fl.an is
less convincing.) fl.b8 (22 .. f5 ?! 23.�b 7
e4? 24.ile4! Je4 25.�e4+ -) 23.�b6 �b6
24.fl.d7± gives White a clear a�vantage;

C) 1 8 . . . li:Jb4 ! This computer suggestion is the


best option available to Black, but still not
good enough to free him from his troubles.
1 C l ) 19.cb4? �bS ! and Black is close to
1
1 equa1·Ity, e.g.
: C I a) 20.fl.a2 fS 2 1 .�d3 (21 .d6? e4
: : B I ) 1 8 . dS � dS ! ? (J8 . . . li:Jd5 1 9 . fl.Jdl li:Jd4 : 22.�g3 li:Jd7+) e4 22.�bS abS+;
1 1 20.cd4 �b5 21 .de5 li:JJ4!=) 1 9 . �e2 �e6 : C l b) 20.fl.aS �b4 2 1 .1i.d2 �d6 22.�e4
I : 2 0 . fl.ad l li:JdS 2 1 . � f3 li:Jc3 ! ! 2 2 . �c 3 a6 : li:Jd7 2 3 . 1i.b4 �b6 24.Ji.f8 J.. f8 oo;
1 1 2 3 . li:Jd6 li:Jd4 24 . li:J c 8 li:Je2 2 S . Wh2 li:Jc3 :C2) Rather than ruin his pawn formation
: : 2 6 . fl.d8 ilf8 2 7 . li:Je 7 Wg7 2 8 . li:J fS ! Wf6 1 like this, White can retreat with 19.1tJa3 ! ,
1 1 2 9 . ilf8 fl.d8 3 0 . ilg7 WgS 3 1 . ilh6 Wf6 1 obtaining excellent long term chances in
:
: check;
1 1 3 2 . ilg7= produces a dream p erpetual view of his mobile queenside pawn mass.

1 B2) 1 8 . deS li:JeS 1 9 . �e2 a6 20.li:Jd6 fl.c3


B2a) 2 1 .fl.fd l �e6 (21 . . . li:Jc6!?) 22.1i.e4
(Rozentalis 2 S 8 8 - eu. Hansen 2626,
Esbj erg 200 1 ) fl.b3 23 .li:Jb7 �c4+;
B2b) 2 1 .li:Je4 ! fl.cc8 22.fl.ad l �bS = when
White ' s bishop pair compensates for the
pawn but nothing more than that.]

17 ed4! It is imperative that Black closes the


••.

d-file in order to equalise.


[Far riskier is 17 . . . a6 ! ? 1 8 .dS !

186
C h ess Informant 1 23

: In spite of lengthy analysis I could not sacrifice brought me back to harsh reality
I find equality for Black here. The critical and shook my confidence in the line :
I line goes 19 . . . ttJc2 ! (J9 . . . e4? ! 20.iJ.. e 4
: f5!? 21 .�dY! �c3 22."il.b1± leaves Black
I exposed to the powerful white bishops.)
I 20.ttJc2
I

I have found nothing better than 2 1 . . .e4 !


C2b31) 22.�e3 ? ! iJ.. a l 23 .ttJa l �d6
does not even equalise for White as the
line 24.�d4 (24.iJ.. b2 ttJd7 25.�e4 "il.fe8
C2a) 20 . . . e4? ! 2 1 .�e3 ! (21 .�e4 �c3 26.�d4 �e5 2 7.�d2 �e2+') "il.fe8 25 .iJ.. b 2
22. "il.b 1 00) (25.ttJc2 ttJd7 26.ttJe3 f5 2 7.iJ.. b 2 ttJe5+')
C2al) 2 1 . . .ttJd5 22.�c5 ! "il.ac8 (22 . . . "il.ad8 f6 26.�f6 �f6 27.iJ.. f6 ttJd7 28.iJ.. d4 b5 ! +'
23.ttJe3 �c6 24."il.d5 "il.d5 25.�d5 �c3 shows;
26."il.b1±) 23.�d5 �d5 24."il.d5 "il.c3 C2b32) but then the crude 22.�e4 ! "il.fe8 !
25 .ttJd4 "il.d3 26.iJ..b 2 ! (26.�e3 ? f5 2 7.g3
g5=» "il.cK 27.Wfl "il.d2 28."il.b l ±;
C2a2) 2 1 . . .�c7 22.�b2± is clearly better
for White;
C2b) 20 . . . "il.ac8 ! ?
C2b l) I had originally analysed only
2 1 .�e3 ? ! ttJd5 22.ttJb4 (22.�d3 ? "il.fd8+)
ttJe3 23."il.d7 ttJf5+';
C2b2) and 2 1 ."il.a2 e4 ! 22.�e3 (22.�e4
"il.c3+')
C2b21) 22 . . . ttJd5 ? ! 23 .�g5 "il.c3 (23 .. /5
24.c4+ -) 24.�d5 �c8 (24 . . . �d5 25."il.d5
"il.b3;;!;) 25.iLa3 ! "il.c2 26."il.c2 �c2 27.iLf8
iJ.. f8 28."il.d2;;!;; C2b321) 2 3 . �d3 iJ.. a l 24.ttJa l �e7 ! is
C2b22) 22 . . . "il.c3 ! ! 2 3 . �b6 "il.fc8 when hardly worse for Black as he will manage
, Black would stand well no matter how to continually annoy his opponent: For
: White reacted, as shown by the following example 2 5 .iJ.. b 2 (25.�d4 ttJd7 26.�b2 ? !
: lines: �e5 2 7.�d2 �e2 28.�d4 f6+) ttJd7
: C2b221) 24."il.d2? ! "il.d3 ! ! 25 .f3 (25.d6 26.ttJc2 �e2 27.�d4 �e5 28 .�e5 ttJe5oo ;
"il.c6! 26.�a 7 iLd4!! 2 7.ttJd4 "il.c1 28.Wh2 C2b322) 23 .�f3 iJ.. a l 24.ttJa l oo �e7 !
�d6 29.g3 �d5! 30."il.d3 ed3 31 j3 Wg7+) . . . allows Black to arrange his forces just in
�d5 26.fe4 �e4 27."il.d3 �d3 28.�e3 time for defensive purposes. The following
(28.�e3 �d1- +) �d l 29.Wh2 h5+; analysis demonstrates tricks and devices
C2b222) 24.iLe3 "il.c2 25."il.c2 "il.c2+'; that are useful for one ' s defensive chess
C2b223) 24.�b4 ! "il.d3 ! (24 . . . "il.c2 25."il.c2 skills but unfortunately no longer so from
"il.c2 26.�e4±; 24 . . .f5!?) 25 ."il.fl �d5 the viewpoint of our repertoire:
26.ttJe3 �b3 27.�b3 "il.b3oo; C2b3221) Both 2 5 . d6? ! �e2+;
: C2b3) 2 1 .c4 ! ! This very strong exchange C2b3222) and 2 5 .iJ.. h 6 ttJd7°o should

1 87
Kotronias

make B lack happy, while (2B.WJcl b5+) WJe l 29.'�h2 WJe4 30.WJc3
C2b3223) 2 5 . iJ.e3 CiJd7 26.CiJc2 b5 ! (30.Jad3 CiJc5! 3 1 . WJc3 WJe5 32.WJe5 Jae5
33.iJ.e5 CiJd3 34.iJ..f6 �j8+) WJe5 3 1 .WJe5
CiJe5+ is better for Black;
C2b32242) 27.WJc l ! WJf5 ! 28.WJd2 WJh5 !
(2B . . . b5 29.CiJc2 bc4 30.bc4 Jac4 31 .CiJe3±)
C2b322421) 29.Jae l Jae l 30.WJe l WJf5 !
, 3 1 .WJe2 CiJc5 32.CiJc2 a5°o (32 . . . WJe4
: 33.WJd2 f6 3413 WJd3 35.WJd3 CiJd3
: 36.iLf6oo);
: C2b322422) 29.CiJc2

: C2b32231) 27 .d6? ! WJe4 28.WJe4 Jae4


: 29.c5
: C2b322311) 29 ... f5
: C2b3223111) 30.h4 Jac4 ! 3 1 .Jad2 (31 .CiJd4
: Jab4 32.c6 Jad4 - +) f4 32.iJ.d4 �t7+;
: C2b32231 12) 30.£3 ! Jae3 3 1 .CiJe3 Jac5
32.b4 Jac6 3 3 .CiJd5 �f7 34.CiJc7 f4;t;
C2b322312) 29 ... a5 ! ? 30.CiJa3 Jae3 3 1 .fe3
Jac5+;
C2b32232) 27.Jad4 bc4 28.bc4 CiJe5 ! C2b3224221) 29 . . . WJe2 30.WJc l CiJc5
(2B . . . JabB 29.WJdl Jab3oo) 29.WJe2 WJd6 3 1 .CiJd4 WJe4 32.CiJ£3 (32.d6 f6) CiJd3
3 0 . iJ.f4 a5 3 1 .Jae4 (31 .CiJe3 ! ?f6) f6 32.iJ.g3 3 3 .WJc3 CiJb2 34.WJb2 b5oo;
WJf800 also looks too slow as Black has C2b3224222) 29 ... Jae2 ! 30.WJc3 f6 !
: managed to defend against the threats and (30 . . . WJe5? 31 .CiJd4 Jae4 3213 Jae3 33.WJd2
: create a dangerous passed pawn; WJe7 34.iLa3 WJeB 35.�J2+ -)
: C2b3224) 25 .iJ.b2 ! Clearly, White can C2b32242221) 3 1 .Jae 1 Jace8 ;
: only pose problems for his opponent by C2b32242222) 3 1 .CiJd4 ! ? Jab2 32.g4 !
: threatening to mate him down the long C2b322422221) 32 . . . WJh4 3 3 . WJb2 WJh3
: diagonal. However B lack is still in time 34.£3 CiJe5 3 5 . WJg2 ! (35.WJJ2 tiJg4!) WJh6
: to put up a sufficient defence: 25 . . . CiJd7 3 6.Jae l WJf4 37.Jae4 WJc l 3 8 . �h2 WJh6
: 26.WJc3 ! (26.CiJc2 WJe2+) WJe5 (after 26 . . . 3 9.�g3;t;
: f6!? 2 7.CiJc2 WJe5, the typical 2B.Jad4! C2b322422222) 32 . . . WJd5 ! 3 3 .WJb2
: avoids a queen exchange.) C2b3224222221) 33 . . . WJe4 ! ? 34.WJe2
WJe2 3 5 .CiJe2 CiJc5 3 6.b4 CiJe6 37.Jad6
CiJg5 ! 3 8 . f4 (3B.c5 a5 39.c6 bc6 40.ba5
JaaB 41 .Jaf6 Jaa5 42.h4 CiJf7 43.Jac6 CiJe5
44.JacB �g7=) CiJe4 39.Jad4 f5=;
C2b3224222222) 3 3 ... WJt7 34.CiJ£3 CiJc5
3 5 . Jad5 WJe7=;
C2b32242223) 3 1 .Jaf1 ! ? In this position
I have been unable to find an advantage
for White as all the entrances to Black' s
camp are well guarded: There might
follow 3 1 . . .WJd5 ! ? 32.CiJd4 ! (32.cd5 Jac3
33.iJ.c3 Jac2+) Jab2 3 3 . WJb2 WJd6 ! 34.Jad l
(34.CiJc2 WJd2; 34.WJc2 !? JadB!; 34.CiJj3
C2b32241) 27.WJc2? ! WJe2 28.Jad2 JaeB; 34.CiJe2 b5) Jad8 ! 3 5 .Jad2 CiJc5

188
C h ess Informant 123

36.ltJD (36.h4 ltJe6 3 7.c5 V/tie5 38.'Be2 because it takes the computer a relatively long
V/tid4 39. V/tia2 V/tid5 40.V/tid5 'Bd5 41 .'Be6 time to spot this simple equalising move.
�j7 42.'Bb6 'Bd7 43f4 h5 44.�j2 'Be 7 [Instead weak is 19" .ltJdS? ! 2 0 . .te4 ! 'Bfd8
45.g4 hg4 46.hg4 �g7=) V/tif8 ! 37.'Be2 2 1 ..tgS ! f6 22.'BaS ! bS? 2 3 . 'Be l ! + -;
(37.h4 ltJe4 38.'Bd4 ltJg5 39.ltJg5 'Bd4
40.V/tid4 fg5=) as= and Black secures the 1 9 " . fS opens up the king and is tantamount to
position of his knight on cS, with equal positional suicide; after 20.b4 ! �h8 2 1 .'BaS
chances; 'Bac8 22 . .tb3± a6? ! 23 . .tf4 ltJc4 24.'BcS bS
C2b323) 23 .V/tif4 ! � leads to a very 2S .dS+ - Black ' s position was collapsing in
dangerous attacking position for White Pavasovic 2S68 - Grosar 2470, Bled 2002]
, who can apply long term pressure on the
: dark squares. For the sake of completeness 20 . .te4 'Be6! One should always remember
: it is important to note that 23 .V/tif4 ! is in that rooks can sometimes be doubled!
: fact the only way to maintain an edge for
: White in this position, as against other 2 1 ..tf4 !
: moves Black manages to hold his own. But [2 1 . .tb7 'Bae8 i s already better for Black.]
: now if 2 3 " . .teS
2 1 ...'BaeS 22 . .teS ! .teS 23.deS V/tic7 24 . .tb7
'BSe7 2S . .ta6 V/tieS 26.'Bac1 �g7 27 . .tfl
as=
Black ' s centralisation coupled with the
pending possibility of " . a4 ensure that this
position is dead level.

CONCLUSION
S . iLc4 is an interesting possibility that
leads to dynamic play. After S " . ltJb6 White
should rather retreat his bishop to b3 as the
alternative 6 . .te2 d6 7 . ed6 eS ! leads to lines
,
that can only be better for B lack. The critical
: 24.V/tid2 .tal 2S .ltJa l V/tid6 26.ltJc2 ltJd7 position of this chapter arises after 6 . Ji.b3
: 27 . .tb2 bS 28.ltJe3 f6± leaves Black with c4 7 . .tc2 g6 8 .b3 dS 9 . ed6 V/tid6 1 0 . 0-0
: a laborious defence ahead of him after Ji.g7 I l . lLla3 cb3 1 2 . ab3 0-0 1 3 . d4 .tg4 !
: either 29 . .td4 or 29.V/tiaS .] 1 4.h3 .t D l S .V/tif3 eS ! 1 6 . lLlbS V/tid7 when
,
,
B lack has given up his light-squared bishop
lS.ltJd4 ltJd4 19.cd4 to accelerate his development and battle
against the white pawn centre. Pavasovic ' s
1 7 . 'Bd l ! i s the only way to put pressure
on B lack, but after 1 7 " . ed4 1 8 . lLld4 ltJd4
1 9 .cd4 the simple novelty 1 9 " . 'Bfe8 ! should
equalise rather easily. Overall, I don' t see the
slightest problem for Black in this chapter,
provided he is satisfied with sound equality,
exchanges and a draw.
Kotronias

END OF PART V

19 ... 'BfeS! I give an exclamation mark merely

189
B 22
1 . e4 c5 2 . c3 l'bf6 3 . e5 l'bd5

4 5 6 7
1 'Llf3 b4 * I. I.ii ..t it' • ..t I.
e6 * l .t. .t. .t. l .t.
2 c4 .t.
j"ljj ,Q,
3 'Lla3

4 g3

5 Jtc4

6 Jtc4 * I. I.ii ..t � • ..t


d4
cd4 *
:!
• .t. .t. • .t. • .t.
7 �d4
IJJ 8
8 cd4 Jtc4 •
d6 8
9 'Llf3 is /Ii
q
tr !=\

10 'Llf3
d6
11 Jtg5 * :i IJJ ..t �· ..t
cd4
I.
b6 *
.t. . .t. .t. .t.
e6

12 'Llbd2 j. .t.
IJJ 8
13 a3 8
14 Jtc4 /\ [\, 8
1]
15 Jtd3

16 'Llc3

1 . e4 c 5 2. l'b f3 l'bc6 3. c3 Cbf6 *


---..-�·----...

4 5 6 7
17 e5 'Lla3 * I. / ..t � • ..t I.
'Lld5 a6 l .t. . .t. .... .t. .t. .t.
. .·

18 Jtc4 ljj ljj


1
19 d4 cd4 'J"\
cd4
20 Jtc4
- -- -- -

1 76
By
BU I LD I N G A R E P E RTO I RE , 822 S I C I LIAN D E F E N S E

C3·SICILIAN
Part VI

T he pedigree of the author speaks volumes about what the reader is to


expect from these articles: apart from being a very strong and successful
active player, GM Vassilios Kotronias is a highly esteemed author and chess
analyst, well known for his deep analytical approach to the opening, who has
worked with several top grandmasters, such as Veselin Topalov, Alexei Shirov

1 77
and Nigel Short, as well as a trainer for the Greek national team. His
name is associated with deep opening research, inventive new ideas and
an unceasing quest for the absolute truth, as can be evidenced from his
various highly regarded opening works to date. Additionally, he is well
known for his uncompromising style and fighting spirit.

Vassilios ' competitive successes include ten gold medals in the Greek
Championships and first places, clear or shared, in several strong
tournaments all over the world, while he has been a member of the Greek
national team for three decades. Most recently he won the gold medal
on his board in the 2 0 1 3 European Team Championships in Warsaw. He
certainly knows what he' s writing about, too: Vassilios has been a lifelong
Sicilian player, and has clearly spent endless hours throughout his career
racking his brains over how to meet the 2.c3 Sicilian in a dynamic and
ambitious way. This series of articles represents the result of his most
recent efforts to deal with this problem.

CHAPTER 1 9
Vassilios Kotronias
l.e4 c5 2.tl:lf3 tl:lc6 3 .c3 tl:lf6 4.e5 tl:ld5
• Country: Greece
5 . d4.cd4 6.cd4
• Born: 1 964

1 .e4 cs 2.tl:lf3 tl:lc6 3.c3 tl:lf6 4.eS tl:ldS 5.d4 • Rating:

• Peak rating:
i. .t. "i' • ..t. i. • Title:
i i i .i i • . •
l.i\ 6 ... d6 Black should lose no time in challenging

& l.i\ � the enemy centre and freeing his pieces.

/8
� ltJ
� £\ ��
ll'l .Ji ii·•� ib
The most natural move, giving White a
temporary space advantage and open lines for
his pieces. B lack has in return a good square
on d5 and the option of undermining White' s
centre b y . . . d6.

5 ... cd4 6.cd4 This recapture is more popular


nowadays than 6 .Ac4, Evgeny Sveshnikov' s
specialty, which i s examined i n the next
chapter. to castle.
[7.�c2 is relatively passive, allowing Black on c4. Black should still go for a kingside
to put e5 under pressure by means of 7 . . . g6 ! : fianchetto: 7 . . . �d6 8 . tt:Jc3 g6
8.0-0 i.Lg7;
.! .i. 9 .i. .!
.! .i. '1lV •
.

.! i i i i i
i i i i .i. i I.ii '1lV i
I.i i i I.ii
I.ii fj

A) After 9 . �b3 ! ? i.Le6 ! 1 0 . i.Lc4 (JO.�b 7


A) 9.ed6 �d6 10.tt:Jc3 0-0 l l .i.Lg5 i.Le6 §.b8 JJ .�a6 tt.Jdb4 12.�a4 ilf5 13.ilb5
12.�d2 .§Jd8 13 . .§.fd l §.ac8 14.tt:Je4? ! (14. ilg7+ is better for B lack as White lags too
h3 f6 15.i.Lh4 tt.Jc3 16.bc3 tt.Ja5+ was the much in development.);
lesser evil) 14 . . . �b8 1 5 .i.Lh6 i.Lg4 ! 1 6 . i.Lg7 I Al) 1 0 . . .0-0-0 l l .tt:Je4 as played in Reefat
�g7+ left Black clearly better in De Dovitiis 2465 Miladinovic 2 5 3 5 , Yerevan (ol)
- Delgado, Villa Martelli 2010; 1 996 (1 1 . 0-0 tt.Ja5 12.�a4 tt.Jc4 13.�c4
�c6=; I J .i.Ld2 tt.Ja5 12.tt.Jb5 tt.Jb3 13.tt.Jd6
B) 9.�b3 ! 'ff.d 6 14.i.Lb3 ilg7=), the logical 1 1 . . .�b4
12 .i.Ld2 �b3 1 3 . ab3 i.Lg7 14.tt:Jeg5 tt:Jd4
1 5 . §.a7 tt:Jf3 1 6.tt:Jf3 i.Lb2 1 7 . 0-0 i.Lf6
.! .i. '1lV • .! yields an unclear position;
i i i i .i. i A2) Safer is 10 . . . §.d8 ! ? 1 1 .0-0 ( J J . tt.Je4
I.i i i �b4 12.i.Ld2 �b3 13.ab3 ilg7 14.tt.Jc5
I.ii tt.Jd4+) ilg7 1 2 . tt:Je4 �c7 1 3 .tt:Jc5 0-0
14.tt:Je6 fe6oo;

B) 9 . i.Lc4 tt:Jb6 1 0.i.Lb3 i.Lg7 1 1 .0-0 0-0


1 2 . d5 (the typical Tarrasch move) tt:Ja5
1 3 . i.Lg5 tt:Jb3 1 4 .�b3 ilg4

Bl) 9 ... tt:Jb6 ! ? 10.§.d l 0-0 l I .tt:Jc3 i.Lg4 .! .! •


I 12 .i.Lf4 (12.h3 il,/3 13.il,/3 de5 14 . ilc6 bc6 i i i i .i. i
1
l 5.de5 �c800 is also excellent for Black I.ii '1lV i
as 16f4 §.b8 l 7.i.Le3 g5 !=; reveals) i.Lf3 !
I 1 3 .i.Lf3 de5=;, intending . . . tt:Jd4, is at least
equal for Black;
B2) 9 . . . de5 1 0.de5 0-0 1 1 .§. d l e6 if l;lj
: (Jl . . . ile6!?= is even better) 1 2.tt:Jc3 tt:Je5 /\
1 1 3 .tt:Jd5 ed5 14.§.d5 tt:Jf3 1 5 .i.L f3 (Alburt -
I Sosonko, USSR (ch) 1 967 - 5/342) �e8 !
1 1 6.§.d l �e5= the chances are about level
1 in this symmetrical position; : Bl) 1 5 .tt:Jd2?! i.Lc3 ! (15 . . . §.ac8 16.tt.Jde4 �d7
! 1 7.h3 il,/5 18.§.adl tt.Jc4= Sznapik 2405 -
: ].edi;i is an attempt to reach a reversed : Kuligovski 2325, Poland (ch-playoff-m/3 )
Tarrasch with the j/JJ placed more actively i 1 978) 1 6.�c3 (16.bc3 �d5) §.fc8+;

1 79
B2) 1 5 .El.fe l El.fe8 1 6 .El.adl '!Wd7+; 0-0, as played in Afek 2395 Shmuter
I 2490, Tel-Aviv 1 996, looks a bit better
: 7.ffill_ for White after 18.�e3!± in spite of his
inferior pawn structure; the pair of bishops
is strong.) A likely continuation is then
!. .i. � · .i. !. 16 .:§e l �g7 1 7 .�g5 0-0 1 8.�b5 '!Wd6
i i i i i i 19 .:§bd l '!Wc7 20.:§d7 '!Wd7 2 1 .:§e7 '!Wd5
I.ii i 22.�c6 '!Wc6 23 .h4 a6 24.c4 h6 with a tiny
I.ii /\ plus for Black;
A4) 9.�b5 l't.Jc3 10.'!Wd8 Sd8 l l .bc3 can be
answered in more than one way:

!. .) .i. !.
i ii i
.i.
is the main alternative to the bishop move,
in order to contest the d5 square; after 7 . . .
de5 8 . de5 there are several continuations
, worth examining. I have chosen to present 'I
1 the following two to the readers:

A) 8 . . . �e6 ! ? is another very logical move


supporting the knight on d5 ; there is a
variety of replies at White' s disposal but I A4a) l l . . .a6 ! ? does not look inferior for
can ' t see any advantage for White. I present Black; a likely continuation is 1 2 .�c6 !
a brief survey of the possibilities with some (I 2. �e2 g6+: l 2.�a4 (Lars A Nielsen
analysis: 2265 - lb Skovgaard 2036, Helsingor
2 0 1 3 ) �d5 13.0-0 e6 14.l'Lld4 b5 15.l'Llc6
�c6+) bc6 1 3 . 0-0 �c4 14.Se l e6 15 .Sb l
!. � · .i. !. �e7 1 6 . a4 c5 1 7. :§b6 0-0=;
i i i i i i A4b) l l . . .�d5 This logical move is
I.ii .i. Houdini ' s choice.
I.ii A4b l ) 12.0-0 a6 1 3.�c6 �c6 14.e6
(14.l'Lld4 �d5 15.�a3 e6 16.�f8 ctif8+)
14 . . . �f3 1 5 .gf3 fe6 1 6.:§b l :§d7 17 .:§e l
ctif7 is slightly better for Black;
, A4b2) As Black is ready to play . . . a6 or
. . . e6, 1 2 .c4 ! seems critical, after which
best play seems to be 12 . . . �e4 13 .e6 !
�f3 14.gf3 fe6 1 5 . �e3 ctif7 16.�c6 bc6
Al) 9 . l'Llb5 ! ? '!Wb6 (9 . . . l'Lldb400) 10.l'Llbd4 1 7 . ctle2 ( 1 7.�a 7 :§a8 18.�e3 :§a4!+)
�d7 l l .l'Llc6 (I l .e6 fe6 l 2.l'Llc6 �c6 g6 18 .Sab l �g7 19 .Bb7 �d4= with
l 3.l'Lle5 g6 14.l'Llc6 bc6 l 5.�e2 �g7 1 6. 0-0 equality;
o-o+) �c6 1 2 . a3 :§d8 1 3 . �d3 e6 14.0-0 h6 : AS) 9 . �e2 l't.Jc3 10.'!Wd8 :§d8 l l .bc3 f6 ! ?
1 5 .'!Wc2 �e7oo; I ( JJ . . . �d5) 1 2 . :§b l :§d7 1 3 . l't.Jd4 l't.Jd4 14.cd4
A2) 9.l't.Je4 l't.Jdb4 1 0 . �d2 '!Wd5 ! 1 1 .l'Llc3 ctif7= Adamski 2275 R. Milovanovic
l'Lld3 1 2 . �d3 '!Wd3+; 241 5 , Warsaw 1988;
A 3 ) 9 .l't.Jd4 l't.Jc3 ! 1 0.bc3 '!Wa5 ! l l .l'Lle6 I A6) 9. l't.Jg5 l't.Jc3 10. '!W d8 :§d8 1 1 .bc3 �f5
'!We5 1 2 . �e2 '!We6 1 3 . 0-0 :§d8 14.'!Wc2 g6 : 1 2.e6 fe6 1 3 . �c4 g6 14.l't.Je6 �e6 1 5 . �e6
15 . :§b l should rather be met by 15 . . . :§d7 ! oo I �g7 1 6 .�d2 :§d6 1 7 . �b3 :§f8 ! 1;
(Instead, 1 5. . . '!Wc8 1 6.'!Wb3 �g7 1 7.'!Wb 7 I A7) 9.'!Wa4 ! ? ct.Jc3 10.bc3 �d5 I l .�c4 �f3

1 80
12 .gD e6 13 . .§.b l \J/!Jc7 14.Ae3 Ae7 1 5 .0-0 very difficult for either side to play for a win.
0-0 16.f4 b6oo; [After the extravagant 8.Af7? ! a good and
safe line for Black is 8 . . . 'iif7 9.e6 'iig8 IO.d5
B) 8 . . . Cbc3 (JO.{Ljg5? Cbd5 - +) Cbd5 l l .\J/!Jd5 \J/!Ja5 12.Cbc3
(12.\J/!Ja5 Cba5 13.Cbd4 Cbc6+) \J/!Jd5 13.Cbd5 .§.b8
14.Cbf4 Cbd8 1 5.Ae3 Cbe6 16.Aa7 Ba8 17.Ae3
.i .t "i' • .t .i Cbf4 18.Af4 h6 19.o-o gs 20.Ae3 Ag7+;
.t. .t. .t. .t. .t. .t.
� 8 .�b3 !? is more interesting and dynamic than
8 .Ab5 ; the critical position arises after 8 . . . de5
9.d5 ! Cba5 1 0 . Cbc3 Cbb3 l l .\J/!Jb3 e6 !

.i .t "i' •..t .i
.t. .t. .t. .t. .t.
� .t.
The most natural choice. We now turn to the
ci .t.
examination of 9.\J/!Jd8 Cbd8 1 0.bc3 where
Black has the better pawn structure and 'i1 ClJ ClJ
e6 well covered, so he need not be afraid /� /� /�, /\ /\
of ideas involving e5-e6. Now 10 . . . Ad7 ! ,
stopping checks on b 5 and preparing . . . sc8, cb.
is of course very logical and sound; after
1 I .Cbd4 scs 1 2 . Ae3 g6 ! U2 . . . sc3 13.Cbb51) A) In case of 1 2 . 0-0
1 3 . .§.c l Ag7 14.f4 Sf8 ! ? 1 5 . Ae2 f6 ! 1 6.ef6 A l ) 1 2 . . . ed5 1 3 .Cbe5 Ae7 (13 . . . Ad6 14.\J/!Jb5
sf6 17.0-0 Ah6 ! 1 8. sf2 e5 1 9 . .:LJD CZJf7! '=; $f8 15f4 'iig8 1 6.Ae3 Ae6 17 . .§.adloo is
Black had an excellent game i n Ikarus - typically unclear, with White enj oying some
Zappa, Torino (WCCC) 2006] compensation for the material.)

Let's now go back to our main line, namely


7.Ac4: .i .t ii • .i
.t. .t. ... .t. .t. .t.
.i �
.i ��· �
ii iiii
"i
... ()
'r.Al { _J A /\ /\
bl <;ti
_

/\
C!\ A l a) 14.\J/!Jb5 ! ? Ad7 1 5 .Cbd7 \J/!Jd7
/\ /\ /\ /\ /\ A l a l ) 1 6.\J/!Jd7 'ii d 7 1 7.Ae3 Af6 1 8 . Ab6

lJ 4_)
Ac3 1 9 .bc3? ( 19.Ae3 ! ?) ab6+ was better
for B lack in Novak 2200 - J. Plachetka
2370, Novy Smokovec 1 97 1 ;
7 ... Cbb6 [The knight retreats with tempo, A l a2) 1 6 . Ae3 ! \J/!Jb5 1 7.CbbS 0-0 1 8 .Cbc7
preparing the capture . . . de5] .§.ads 1 9 . sad l Cbc4 20.Cbd5 Ad6= is
. level too;
8.Ab5 This move is the most popular and • A l b) 1 4 . Ae3 should lead to equality in
safe for White, leading to positions where it is multiple ways, e.g. 14 . . . 0-0 ! (14 . . . Ae6?!

181
: 15.'W!ib5 @j8 16."§.adl±) I S . �b6 ab6
B lack has forfeited t h e right to castle, but
: Al b l ) 1 6.tl:idS �cs 1 7."§.ad l ( 1 7.tbd3 in return has an extra pawn and a pair of
: �e6 18.tb3f4 �d7 19.'W!ig3 �c600) �e6oo; b ishops. In a fe w positions Black will have
: A l b2) 1 6 . 'W!idS �f6 1 7 ."§.fe l "§.aS 1 8.'W!id8 to play incisively and without the services
: "§.d8 1 9 . tl:ic4 "§.cS 20.tl:ib6 �e6=;
o f the "§.h8 as it i s obstructed by the king;
I A2) 12 . . . tl:idS ! ? is well worth trying and in some of these positions he will try to
I could be a winning attempt. castle artificially by . . . h6 and . . . @g8-h7,
in others he will push his pawn to h4 and
.i A � fl .A .i try to activate the rook via h S . Here are
the fruits of my analysis:
ii iii I B l ) I S . "§.d l ?! is convincingly answered
I
i by l S . . . � e S ! 1 6 . tlJdS �d6 ! ( / 6 . . . & )d 7
'.& i 1 7. 'W!ib4 @ e 8 1 8 . 0- 0-"; 1 6 . . . �\;J, d 7 1 7. 'W!ic5
@e8 18.tbb6 + -) 1 7 . tl:ib6 ( 1 7. 0-0 �d7
1 8 . 'W!i d3 tbc8+) ab6 1 8 . 0-0 �e6 ! 1 9 . � f4
CiJ ( 1 9. � b 6 �c4!!+ leads to a winning
bb endgame for B l ac k . ) � f4 2 0 . "§.d8 "§.d8
h� 2 I .'W!ib6 �gs+ (21 . . . "f:dd5+);
B 2 ) I S . 0-0-0 �e6 1 6. tl:i f3 (Black stood
optimally after 1 6f4 �e5 1 7fe5 h 6+. in
• A2a) 1 3 . tl:idS? 'W!idS+ is bad for White; Van Der Werf 24 1 S Van Wely 2 S 7 S ,
A2b) 1 3 ."§. d l ! ? should be met by W ij k a a n Zee (open) 1 99 S 62/( 1 48))
• 1 3 . . . 'W!ib6 ! 14.tl:ieS (1 4. tbd5 ed5 15.'W!id5 f6 "§. c 8 1 7 . @b l tl:ic4 ! 1 8 . tl:idS a6 leads t o
• 1 6.�e3 �e6! seems to deny White serious a tense situation where B l a c k i s doing
. compensation.) 'W!ib3 I S . ab3 f6 1 6 . tl:ic4
extremely okay :
: (16.tbd5 ed5 1 7.tbd3 g5! 18.�e3 @j7+.)
• tl:ic3 1 7 . bc3 a6 ! and to achieve full equality
• White needs to struggle in the line l 8 .tl:ib6
"§.b8 1 9 . �e3 eS 20.f4 ! �e6 2 1 .feS fe5
: 22."§.aS "§.d8 ! 2 3 . "§.d8 (23."§.e l �d6) @d8
. 24.b4 �d6 2S.bS ! @c7 26.ba6 ba6 2 7."§.a6
• @b7
: A2c) 1 3 .tl:ieS was played in a correspondence
! game, mentioned above, and which
: continued 13 . . . tl:ic3 14.'W!ic3 (14.bc3 V$d5!)
: f6 ! I S .tl:id3 eS 16.�e3 'W!idS 1 7 ."§.fd l �g4
: 1 8 . f3 �fS 19.tbcS 'W!ic6 20."§.ac l �cs+, / '

: S icker - Guenschmann, corr. 2003;

I B) 1 2 .tl:ieS ! edS 1 3 . �e3 �d6 1 4.'W!ibS @f8 : B 2 a) 1 9 . 'W!ib 7 ? "§.b8 2 0 . 'W!ia6 tl:ib2
2 1 . "§.d4 tl:ic4
B 2 a l ) 2 2 . @c2 tl:ia3 ! 2 3 . @d3 (23 . @d l
.i A � • .i tbbS - + ) tbbS - + ;
i i i i i B 2 a 2 ) 2 2 .@a l tl:i e 3 2 3 . fe 3 (23.tbe3
'.& .A �e5 + ) � c s + i s c learly bad for
White;
'ii i CZJ B2b) 1 9 . 'W!ia4? ! � fS ! 2 0 . @a l �c2
leads to a good version o f the variation
1 9 . 'W!ib3 � fS seen below, as the queen
c annot take on b 7 ;
B 2 c ) 1 9 . 'W!ib3 looks like the best
possibility for White.

182
contrast to the above lines, after 19 . . . �a5 !
there is no draw for White; the best I could
: find for him is 20.�b6D lZ:Jb6 2 1 . �b6
�c5 ! + B . Rechel 2369 - Kragelj 2225,
Kecskemet 1 999 - 74/( 1 5 7) (more exact
: than 21 . . . �b6 22.lZJb6 2.c6+! ) the point
: being that 22.�b7?? fails to 22 . . . Bb8 - +;
I B3) 1 5 .lZ:Jf3 !

.i .i. � • .i
B2cl) 19 . . . �f5 20.@a l �c2 ! i i i & i
B2cll) 2 1 .�c2?! CZJe3 22.�c8 �c8
23 .lZ:Je3 �b8 ! (1:, . . .g6, . . . @gl) looks better
� .i. .

for Black, e.g. 24.Bc I (24.2.d5 g6 25.2.hdl Vj!j i


@gl 26.2.dl h 6+) �e8 ! 25.Bhe l g6+;
B2c12) 2 1 .�b7 ! �d l 22.Bd l lZ:Je3
(22 . . . 2.b8 ? ! 23.�a6 lZJh2? 24.2.d4! + -)
23.fe3 ! (23.lZJe3 �cl! 24.�c l Be l 25.0/5
�e l+)

I consider this retreat as the most pressing


move for Black. The knight controls d4,
1 and White has kept open the option of

. castling either side. We will now focus on


15 . . . �d7 ! ? j ust one of several interesting
1 moves. White has a choice of retreats and
we will deal carefully with each of them:
B3a) 16.�b6? �e8 1 7 . �e2 ab6+ is out of
the question for White as Black' s bishops
are very powerful and after the exchange of
queens they will dominate the whole board;
B3b) 1 6 . �d3 �g4 ! is excellent for Black.
B2c121) 23 . . . g6 ! ? 24.lZ:Jg5 For example:
B2c122) . . . and 23 .. . �e8 ! ? 24. lZ:Je5 !
(24.�.5_ 2.b8 25.�a6 �e5i; :J./._\V"}ao �c6
25.�c6 Bc600) Bd8 25 .lZ:Jc6 Bd7 26.�a6
do not offer Black realistic chances to play
for a win in any case;
B2c 123) 23 . . . Bb8 ! presents Black with a
difficult choice. In the end I concluded that
23 . . . Bb8 ! is safer and clear-cut, as after this
move there can follow 24.�a6 h5 ! 2 5 .lZ:Jf4
Bh6 26.lZ:Je5 @g8 27.lZ:Jf7 ! (2 l.lZJc6 �e8
28.lZJb8 Af4 29.�a5 2.d6! 30.2.d6 �d6
31 .lZJa6 �e3+) @f7 28.�c4 @e7 29.�e4
@f7 30.�c4=;
B2c2) The refined move 19 . . . �a5 ! B3b l ) 1 7 . lZ:Jd4 lZ:Jc4 ! ? 1 8 . 0-0 �h4 ! leads
. . .is best here, but I had to go through a to a weakening of White' s kingside, a fact
lot of variations after dealing with the that keeps him occupied with defending the
alternative 1 9 . . . �f5 in order to understand light squares around his king; after 19 .g3
it. I present a summary of my analysis: In • (19.h3? �h3+) �h5 20.b3 CZJe5 2 1 .�b5

183
Clif3 22.Clif3 ..\lf3 2 3 . 1&d7 (23.1&b 7? B3b2 2 1 ) Black has no problems after
£d8 - +) @g8 ! 24.Clib5 (24. ..\ld4 ? ! h 6 1 8 . 1&d4 1&f5 ! ? (18 . . . 1&c4=) 1 9 .h3 ..\lf3
2 5.'f4f'el @h 7 26.Be3 Bad8 2 7.1&b 7 20.gf3 .8'.c8=;
Bhe8 gives Black the better chances.) B3b222) 18 ...\lb6 ab6 19.1&d5 ..\le7 20.Clie5
..\le5 2 5 . ..\ld4 ..\lf4 ! 26 . ..\lb2 h6 27.Clid4 ..\le6 2 1 .Clid7 @e8 22.Clib6 ..\ld5 23 .Clic8
..\lg4 28.1&b7 @h7 29 .Bfe 1 ..\ld6= Black ..\lg2 24.Bhg l Bc8 25.Bg2 g6 = and an
has carried out artificial castling and the approximately equal ending has been reached;
chances are even; B3c) 1 6.1&e2 ! ? is a reserved course; White
B3b2) 17 . 0-0-0 intends to castle short and apply central
B3b21 ) Laborious is 17 . . . Bc8 1 8 .@b l 1&f6 ! pressure. After 16 . . . 1&f6 ! (16 ... Clia4 1 7.Clia4
..\la4 18.0-0±; 16. . . Clic4!?)

j_
j_
i

B3b211) Easy equality results from 1 9 . @ a l


..\lf3 20.gf3 ..\le5 2 1 .Clid5 Clid5 22.1&d5 B3c l ) Black is slightly better in case of
..tb2 2 3 . @b l 1&g6 24.@b2 (24 . .8'.d3 Af6+.) 1 7 . ..\lb6 ab6 1 8 .0-0 (18.Clid5 1&e6! 19.1&e6
1&c2 2 5 . @a l 1&c3=; ..\le6+. 620.Clib6?? Ba6) ..\lc6 ! 19 .Bad l
B3b212) 19.Clid5 ! Clid5 20.1&d5 1&f5 .8'.d8 ! +.;
2 1 .@a l 1&d5 22 . Bd5 ..\lb8 ! but the B3c2) 1 7 . 0-0 !
computer insists the Black should be B3c2 1 ) Now 1 7 . . . ..\lg4? ! 1 8 . ..\lb6 ab6
able to equalise even here, e.g. 23 .Clid4 ! ? 1 9 . Clid5 ..\lf3 ! 20.1&f3 1&f3 2 1 .gf3 leads to
(23.Bhdl f6!=) Be8 ! 24. Bc l (24.h3 llc8 an ending where Black is suffering a little
25 . .8'.cl a 6=; 24.0/5 j6= 625 . ..\lc5 @j7 bit, a sample line being 2 1 . . .b5 ! ? (21 . . . .8'.a6!
26.Bdl? @e6 - +; 24.Clib5 a6! 25.Bel 22.a4!±) 22.Bfd l ! Ba6 ! ? (22 . . .g 6 23.Clib6
j6=) a6 25 .h3 ..\lc8 26.Clif5 f6 27.Bc8 ! £d8 24.£d5±) 2 3 . Bac l !? (23.Clib4 .8'.b6
Bc8 28 . Bd7 h5 ! = and in spite of his 24.Clid5 Ba6 25.Clib4=) g6 24.Clic7±;
impressive looking invasion on the 7' h rank B3c22) I like the energetic 17 . . . Be8 ! ,
White lacks a finishing blow; mobilising a s many pieces as possible.
B3b22) 17 . . . 1&c8! is a clear-cut solution, This is how play might continue:
preventing the white king from escaping to b l B3c221) After 1 8 . Bad l

i. *' i.
j_ i i i
j_ if
i

184
B3c2211) . . . the prophylactic 1 8 . . . h6? ! B3dl) After 1 7 . 0-0-0 ! ? I like the
allows 1 9.�d3 ! �c6 (19 ... �g4 20.C[Jd5 "geometric" 17 . . . �c8 ! ? pinning the C[Jc3
C[Jd5 21.�ct5 Be6 22.�b 7±) 20.C[Jb5 �b8 and obtaining access to both c4 and f5 . The
2 1 .C[Ja7 ! �a7 22.�a3 @g8 2 3 . �a7± with following analysis confirmed my initial
an edge for White; feeling that B lack is j ust fine here:
B3c2212) 18 . . . �c6 ! is called for, with B3d l l ) 1 8 .@b l ! ? is best answered by
a good game, e.g. 19.�d3 (19.C[Jb5 �b8 1 8 . . . �c4 ! = making good use of the C[Jb6.
20.�d2 @g8+) �g6 !
B3c22121) 20.�b6? ! ab6 2 1 .�g6 (2J .C[Jd5?
�d3 22.Bd3 �b5+) hg6 22.CfJd5 Bh5+; • .i
B3c22122) 20.�d4 ! @g8 2 1 .b3 h6 i i i
22.Bfe I Be6 23 .h3 @h7 24.C[Jh4 �e5=;
B3c222) 18.Bfd l

.i . .i
i i j_ i i i
IJl j_ �
i
B3d l l l ) Keeping queens on by 1 9 . �c2 ! ?
i s well met by 1 9 . . . �h5 ! ( 1 9. . . Af3 ? !
20.gf3 �e5 2 1 .C[Jd5 �c2 22.@c2±)
20.�d2 ! ? (20.@al Af3 ! ? 2 1 .gf3 �e500)
�b4 2 1 .Bc l f6 ! ? (21 . . . CfJa4? ! 22.�d4
�g6 23. @a l ±) 22.C[Jd4 �g6 2 3 . @a l @f7
1 8 . . . �c6 ! Again this move is required. 24.h4 h5 2 5 . a3 �a6 26.C[Jdb5 Bad8oo and
(18 . . . h6?! 19.�d3!± is better for White) Black is certainly not worse;
19.�d3 �g6 ! 20.�b6 ab6 2 1 .C[Jd5 b5 ! oo B3d112) After 1 9.�c4 ! C[Jc4 20.C[Jd5 the
and i n this unclear position the chances most accurate way to handle the ending is
should be dynamically balanced. We can probably. . .
add a few more possible moves: 22.�d2 B3d 1 1 2 1 ) 2 0 . . . h5 ! givmg the &h8
(22.�b3 h6 23.CfJh4 �g400) h6 2 3 .CfJf4 breathing space and creating the option of
�f4 24.�f4 @g8 25.Bd6 Be4=; taking on e3 .
B3d) 16.�b3 ! looks best, maintaining
pressure on d5 and b6 while avoiding
shielding the d-file. .i • .i
i i i i
We now turn our attention to the main line, j_
with the reply 16 . . . �g4 !

.i � . .i
, )

ii i i i
"' j_
i
j_ Now White has nothing better than 2 l .h3
but then 2 l . . .C[Je3 22.CfJe3 �f3 23 .gf3
�c5 24. Bd7 b6= reveals an important
difference, as the rook is ready to spring
to life via h6, rendering the position

185
completely equal; B3dl23) 19.@b l Creating the possibility
B3d1122) Also possible 1s 20 . . . Afs of taking with the knight on d5 . In reply
2 1 .@a l Ae4 ! but then to 1 9 . @b l , Black should play 19 . . . d4 ! ?
20.'fld4 Ae6 ! and I can't see how White
can do anything of substance after it:
i. • i.
i i i i i
.i.
l;l_J
IJl .i.
t2J
£z1

B3dll221) 22 . .§.d4 Ad5 2 3 . .§.d5 Qie3


24 . .§.d6 (24fe3 @e l+) @e7 ! is at least
equal for B lack; The best I could find is 2 l .Qid5 ! ( :: I . \1\Y h5
B3d1 1222) However 22.Qic3 ! Af3 ! Ac5 22.'fJ,/4 g6 23.Qid4 \£?g7+:::::;; ��

: (22 . . . Ac6 23.Ild6! l{Jd6 24. Ac5 'ild8 Ae7 22.'flel h5! 23.Qie5 'flh600) h6 22.'fle l
25.Ildl is not easy to meet as 25 . . . @e7?! ( ll.fiJhn:F) Ab3 23.Qic8 Aa2 - +; :::;Jjc"1
: fails to 26.Qid4±) 23 .gf3 Ae5 24.Ild7± Ac5) @g8 ! 2 3 . g4 ! ? (23.�b6?! Ac5
could be a trifling edge for White; I see no 24.�b5 Ad4 25.Qie7 @h 7 26.Qic8 Aa2
reason to allow it; 2 7. @c2 'flhc8 28.@dl il,/2+) Ag4 24.Qif6
B3dl2) 1 8. Ab6 Apparently risky, but ' gf6 25 . .§.g l (25.Ilg4 �g4 26.Ilgl �gl
in reality not so much, as Black remains : 2 7.Qigl @g700) h5 26.'fld6 �f5 27.@al
undeveloped. After the forced recapture : @f8 28.�b4 (28.Qid4 \1&,/2 29 . .§.bl \1&,/4
1 8 . . . ab6 White has two or three options to : 30.Ild5 �h2+) @g7 29.h3 �f3 30.hg4
choose from, but Black stands excellently : �f2 3 1 . 'fldd l 'fla5 32.gh5 Ilg5 3 3 . 'flgfl
regardless of his choice: ' �c5 34.�f4 'flh6 3 5 .�b8 �b5 36.'flfe l
.§.g2 3 7 . .§.b l �h5 3 8 . .§.e8 .§.h8 39 . .§.h8
�h8 40.�b7 �h2 41 .�b6 �e5 42 . .§.h l
f5 43 .a4 f4 44.�h6 @g8 45.�h7 @f8
46.�h8 �h8 47.'flh8 @g7 48.'flh4 f3
49.Ilf4 f2 50.@a2 @g6=;
B3d2) l 7 . Qid4 ! After this White normally
waves goodbye to the attractive idea of
castling long, but it is nevertheless the best
: move.

B3dl21) 19.'flhe l h5 ! + is very fine for


Black;
B3d122) 19 . �d5 ! ? is convincingly
answered by 19 . . . Ab4 ! 20.Qig5 Ah5 !
2 1 .'fld4 Ac3 22.'flc4 Ab2 23.@b2 �d8
24.�d8 'fld8 25.'flc7 h6 26.Qie4 g5 ! ?
(26 . . . Ag6 27.Qid6 .§.d6 28 . .§.c8 @e 7
29.Ilel \£?f6 30.'flh8 Ild2=) 27.Ilb7 Ag6+;

186
B3d21) 1 7 . . . tt:lc4? 1 8 . 'Mfb7 tt:le3 1 9 . fe3± 6 B3d23122) 23 . . . h5 ! 24.:§ad l :§h6 ! !::; when
0-0, is clearly better for White; Black seems to be at least equal;
B3d22) Also bad is 17 . . . 'Mfh4? ! 1 8 . tt:lcb5 ! B3d232) Also 1 8.0-0 'Mfg6 !
(l 8.tt:ldb5 ? :§e8 - + would have been ideal
for Black) 18 . . . .il.e5? 19.'Mfb4 ! c;i?g8
20.tt:lf3 + -;
B3d23) For a while I toyed with the
idea 1 7 . . . 'Mff6 ! ?, until I had made other
discoveries:

i. • i.
i i i i i
� .i. 'ii'
i
\ .i. 1 9 . f3 ( 19.!?lceJ h5 20f3 .ii.h 3 21 .:§j2
.ii. d 7 22.tt:lb5 .ii. b 5 23.'Mfb5 h4!:;; / 9.g3
h5 20.ttJdb5 h4 2J .ttJd6 'Mfd600; /9.cJ;;r/i J
c;i?g800) .il.h3 20 . Bf2 Be8 2 1 . Be l c;i?g8
(21 . . .tt:lc4 22.tt:ld5 tt:le3 23 . .8'.e3±) 22.tt:ld5
tt:ld5 2 3 . 'Mfd5 h6 24.'Mfb7 c;i?h7 2 5 . 'Mfb3
B3d231) I had originally only looked at .il.f4 26.tt:lc2 .il.b8 27.Bfe2 .il.e6 28.'Mfa4
1 8 .h3 Be8 ! 19 . tt:lcb5 ! (19.tt:ldb5 .8'.e3 - +; .il.d5 29.tt:ld4 Be5oo when the Bh8 has
19.hg4 'Mfd4+) finally been brought into play and the two
B3d2311) 19 . . . tt:lc4? ! 20.hg4 (20.tt:ld6?? bishops give B lack excellent compensation
.8'.e3 2l fe3 'Mfh4 22.$(1 tt:ld2 - +) Be3 for the pawn.
2 1 .fe3 .il.g3 22.c;i?d l 'Mff2 23 .c;i?c l ! ± ;
B3d2312) 1 9 . . . .il.d7 ! 20.tt:ld6 'Mfd6 2 1 .0-0 However Houdini ' s discovery of l 8.tt:ldb5 !
c;i?g8 22.tt:lb5 (22.fi.fel h6 23.tt:lj3 c;i?h 7=) forced me to change my plans . . .
'Mfg6 23 . .il.d4 C3 .'i!Jh I tt:lc4 24.tt:lc l .ii. h 3!
25.gh3 'Mfe4=; 23.{5/iJ tt:lc4) B3d233) Indeed 1 8 .tt:ldb5 ! 1' i s better for
White;

i. • i.
i i .i. i i i i. • i.
� 'ii' i i i i i
i � .i. 'ii'
i
.i.
� q_j

B3d23121) 23 . . . .8'.e4 ! ? 24 . .8'.fe l (24 . .8'.adl


h6 25.tt:la l tt:lc4 26 . .8'.d3 .ii. h 3!! 27.Bg3 The main point of l 8. tt:ldb5 ! is that Black
.il.g4 28.'Mfc3 tt:ld6 29f3 .8'.d4 30.'Mfd4 ti:Jf5 can ' t play 18 . . . .il.e5 because after 1 9 . 'Mfb4
31 . .8'.g4 tt:ld4 32 . .8'.g6.fg6+) h6 25 . .8'.e4 de4 he loses his bishop, and unfortunately
26.tt:la7 tt:lc8 ! 27.tt:lc8 .il.c8 28 . .8'.e l c;i?h7 the clever 18 . . . d4 ! ? 1 9 . tt:le4 'Mfe7 (After
29.:§e3 'Mfe6 30.'Mfc3 f6= (30 . . .:§g8 31 .a4 19 . . . 'Mfe6 20.tt:lbd6 'Mfb3 21 .ab3 de3 22fe3
.ii.d 7=); c;i?e 7 2 3. 0-0 .ii. e 6 24 .tt:lb 7 .ii. b 3 the peculiar
'
1 87
25.{jjed6!! iLe6 26.'Bac l ± gives White a as his rook on h8 has freedom to operate
big advantage.) 20.{jjb d6 de3 is worse for via h5 or h6.) @g8, Black seems to have
Black for a variety of reasons. One of them done everything correctly and the position
is 2 l .�e3 (21 . 0-0 e2 22.'fi.fel fid8 23f3 is equal. I analysed several moves at this
ile6 24.�a3 {jj c 4 25.{jjc 4 iLc4 26.�a l± point:
is another idea.) 2 1 . . .{jj d 5 (2 J . . . 'Bd8
22.0-0! 'Bd6 23.{jjd6 �d6 24.Bfel iLe6
25.'Badl±; 21 . . . f5 22.h3! fe4 23.�f4 @g8
24.hg4 {jjd5 25.�d2 �d6 26.'Bh5!!±)
22.�c5 iLe6 (22 . . . {jjf6 23f3 {jje 4 24fe4±
produces a surprisingly stable knight on
d6. ) 2 3 . 'Bd l ! ? f5 24.{jj f5 ! iLf5 25 .'Bd5
iLe4 26.�e7 @e7 27.Be5 @f6 28.Be4
Bac8 29.0-0 Bc2 30.b3 Ba2 3 1 .'Bfe l l and
drawing this ending won't be a piece of
cake as the black king is exposed;
B3d24) After 17 .{jj d4 ! Black needs to be
precise and play 17 . . . h5 ! An important
move, gaining space and preparing . . . h4 to B3d2431 ) A typical blunder would be
free the 'Bh8. 20.{jj d 5?? iLa4 - + and White loses a
piece;
B3d2432) 20.{jj f3 h4! 2 1 .'Bad l 'Bh5
:i 'it' • :i 22.Bfe 1 .iLe6 looks safe and solid for
i i i i Black;
'il .a B3d2433) 20.{jjd b5 iLc6 2 1 .{jj d6
i i (21 .'Badl iLe5) �d6 22.'Bad l is a logical
continuation, when B lack should take care
cb .a not to weaken his h-pawn by pushing it
further.
B3d24331) 22 . . . h4? ! 23.'Bd4 ! 'Bh5
24.�dl ! �g6 25.Bg4 ! 1 gives White a
strong initiative;
B3d24332) 22 . . . 'Be8 ! ?
B3d241) 1 8 .{jj d b5 would b e now met by
1 8 . . . .iLeS+ as the .iLg4 is protected .. .
B3d242) . . . while 1 8 .0-0 allows 1 8 . . . �h4
1 9 . f4 Be8 and B lack has mobilised his
forces successfully. Some further moves:
20.{jj d 5 (20.'Bael !Af4! 21 . Ci)/3 ! iLe3
22.'Be3 �d8 23.{jj e 5 f6 24.{jjg 6 @g8
25.'Be8 �e8 26.{jj h 8 �e3 2 7.@hl @h8=
is approximately equal.) {jj d 5 2 1 .�d5 �f6
22.iLf2 (22.'Bael ? ! ilb4) iLf4 2 3 . Bae 1
'Bd8 24.�b7 'Bd4 2 5 . .iLd4 �d4 26.@h l
g5 27.g3 iLe6 28.'Be6 fe 6 29.gf4 gf4
30.'Bc l �d5 3 1 .�d5 ed5 3 2 .'Bc7 'Bh6
3 3 . Ba7 Bc6=; B3d243321) 2 3 .'Bd4 �g6 24.'Bfdl
B3d243) So White has to weaken (24.{jj e 2 {jj c 4i) @h7 25.{jj e'2 {jjc 4 26.{jj f4
himself by 1 8 .h3 in order to castle, and �f5 27.{jjd 5 {jje3 28.{jje 3 �g6=;
this weakness will be exploited later on. B3d243322) 2 3 .{jj b 5 ! �g6 24.{jj a 7 {jjc4
Then, after 18 . . . .iLd7 19.0-0 (19. 0-0-0 h4! 25 . .iLd4 @h7 26.�d3± looks like a better
produces a n excellent position for Black ending for White;

188
B3d24333) 22 . . . �g6 ! = feels like the right B3d24344) 2 1 .�c2 Apparently the only
move. way of stopping the sac. Now a good way
of continuing is 2 1 . . .h4 (21 . . . ilh3 ? ! 22.gh3
�h3 23,13 .§.e8 24.fi,fel±; 21 . . . ilb4!?)
22.Bfe I .§h5 2 3 . �e2 g6oo with an
unclear position; White has satisfactory
compensation for the pawn due to his
control over d4, but no more than that.]

We'll now move on with an examination


of 8 . ilb5 :

!. .a � · .a !.
The point being that it has prevented Qib5
ii iiii
and Black is ready to follow up with . . . .§.e8 IJ\ IJ\ i
and . . . @h7 . If 2 3 . ild4, then 23 . . . Qic4
24.Qie2 h4 25 . .§fe l .§h6 26.Qif4 �f5= � C�
and Black has coordinated everything, b
obtaining fully equal play;
B3d2434) 20.Bad l looks best and in reply
Black should carve a slightly different �b bbb
path: 20 . . . �c8 ! ? Suddenly the threat of
taking on h3 is very real; g ctJ � iV �
8 ... deS 9.QieS ild7 10.Qid7 This has been the
most popular move in practice.
[ I O.'t_ld has long been known to lead to
drawish positions.

.i � • .t .i
i i .t i .I. i i
I.ii I.ii

B3d24341) 2 1 .Bc I? il,h3+ is good for


Black;
B3d24342) 2 1 .Qidb5 ilh3 ! 22 . .§.d5 ilh2 !
23.@h2 (23.@h l ? ? �g4 - +) ilg2 !
24 . .§d8 �d8 25.@g2 �h4 26.f3 Qic4
27.ilc l .§h6 ! ! 28.ilh6 gh6 29.Qie4 Qid2 ! A) Quite clear-cut is 10 . . . Qie5 l l . de5 ilb5
30.Qid2 �g5 produces a wonderful draw 1 2.Qib5 �d i 1 3 . @d l Qid5 14.@e2 a6
by perpetual check; 1 5 . .§ d l 0-0-0
B3d24343) 2 1 .Qicb5 ilb8 22 . .§.c I Qic4 Al) 1 6 .Qid4 e6 1 7 . ilg5 Bd7 ( 1 7. . . ile7=)
23 .Qif3 ilh3 24.gh3 �h3 25.Qibd4 Qie3 18 .Bac l @b8 1 9 . Qib3 h6 20.ile3 ile7=
26.fe3 .§.h6 27.@f2 .§.b6 28.�d5 .§.b2 was equal in G . Borg 2200 - Ki. Georgiev
29 . .§.c2 ilg3 30.@g l .§.c2 3 1 .Qic2 �g4oo 25 1 5 , Thessaloniki (ol) 1 984 - 3 8/ 1 94;
is unclear, the most likely result being a A2) 1 6 . Qia3 e6 1 7 . Qic4 ile7 1 8 . ild2 b6
draw; 1 9 . g3 @b7 20.Qie3 Qic7 and B lack had

189
. easily equalised in the stem game of this has drawing tendencies, but i t is rather
variation, Sveshnikov 2545 - Kasparov I White who has to be the more careful:
1 2545, U S SR (ch) 1 979 - 2 8/32 1 , and went
I on to win;

I B)intrigue
10 . . . e6 ! ? is designed to
in the position;
retain more

I B l ) Then l l .�c6 �c6 1 2 . tbc6 bc6 1 3 . l/:ifg4


is an attempt to impede the development
of B lack ' s kingside and this should be met
l by 13 . . . h5 ! . Then 14.'l:iff3 sc8 leads to a
position where B lack ' s control over d5 and
slightly better bishop nullify the weakened
i kingside.

B2a) A bad mistake is 14.lbd6? �d6


1 5 .ed6 0-0 1 6 . �h6 (16.fl,[4 '/:ifa4+) f5
1 7 . l/:ifg3 e5+ ( 1 7. . . 'fi,/6+);
B2b) After 14.tbc3 l/:ifd3 ! the untried
1 5 .l/:ife2 ! ? (15.'/:ife4 '/:ifc4! 16.fl,/4 �b4+.;
15.�d2 tbc4 16.0-0-0 h5! 1 7.W!f.[4
' sc8 18.�e1 '/:ifg6 19.'/:ifd4 tbb6+. left
White struggling in Sveshnikov 2565 -
Polugaevsky 2620, USSR (ch) 1 978 -
26/(3 4 1 )) should maintain equal chances,
e.g. 15 . . . l/:ifc4 ! ? 1 6.�e3 �b4 1 7.sc l �c3
1 8.sc3 l/:ife2 1 9 . rtie2 l2Jd5 20.sc4 h5=;
For example: B3) White can now choose to castle,
which may appear logical, but it removes
B l a) 1 5 . �e 3 was the continuation in the king from the centre, a factor that
Rai. Kleeschaetzky 2 3 1 8 - L. Gutman could tip the scales in Black ' s favour in
248 8, Germany (ch) 2 00 1 , where I some endgames.
prefer 1 5 . . . l/:if f6 ! ? , directly challenging
the white queen ' s good p o s ition o n f3 . We' ll now concentrate on 1 1 .0-0 e5 1 2 .de5
A fter 1 6 . l/:ife2 ( 1 6. '/:iff6 gf6 1 7. rtie2 f5 �b5 1 3 . lbb5 a6 !
18.'§.ac1 rtid7=:; looks great for B lack
. who, in addition to excellent l ight square B3a) The ending arising after 14.l/:ifd8?!
• control, has obtained the g-file for sd8
. h i s roo k . ) l/:if f5 ! 1 7 . 0-0 ( 1 7 . '/:if a 6 s c 7)
• �d6=:; and the second player controls
a l o t o f important s quares and h a s the i: • .t i:
easier game; .& & .i i
B l b) 1 5 . 0-0 l/:ifd4 1 6 . �f4 (16.sdl ? ! i 'ii .&
'/:ifg4+) � e 7 1 7.sfe l l/:iff6 ! ? ( 1 7. . . tbd5 ? !
18.�e5 '/:ifg4 19.'/:ifg 4 hg4 20.�g700 led to
an unclear ending in Sveshnikov 2545 -
Browne 2540, Novi Sad 1 979 28/320)
1 8 . '/:if g3 ! ? U1_'l_];!,c,_,2;� tbd5+;
'l:iff5+.) 0-0 19.tbe4 l/:ifh4 ! and it is not clear
whether White has enough compensation
for the sacrificed pawn;
B2) l l . l/:ifg4 l2Je5 12.de5 �b5 1 3 . l2Jb5 l/:ifd7 !

190
'l:le5 ! 1 8 . .§Jd l (18.ilb6 ild6+) ild6+;
B3a2) 1 5 .'l:lc3 'l:lc4 1 6 . f4 ilb4 1 7 . 'l:le4
:9'.d4 1 8 . 'l:lg 5 we7 1 9 .b3 'Lld2 2 0 . ilb2
B d 7i was worse for White in Gurgenidze
2505 Sturua 24 1 0 , USSR 1 9 8 0 ;
B3b) 1 4 . 'l:ld6 .il d 6 1 5 . ed6 i s double­
edged b u t not worse for B lack as the
pawn on d6 c an easily turn out to be a
weakness : the sequel 1 5 . . . 'l:ld5 1 6 . �g4
' ( 1 6 . ilf4 0-0 1 7. ilg3 �d7 18. �d3
Sac8 19 . 'Sacl El.cl 2 0 . 'S c l Sc800) 0-0
1 7 . �g3 �d7 1 8 . ilh 6 f6 19 . B fe l ct;h8
f
(19 . . . 'S 7 ! ?) 2 0 . Bad l s fe 8 2 1 . il e 3 B t a) 1 6 . . . sfe8 ! ? 1 7.�f3 �d7
'Sac8=!+ proved B lack ' s chances t o ( 1 7. . . 'bc4!?=::; ) 1 8 . .ilf6 ! Be l 19 .Be l �d2
be quite good i n Hasche - Postier, corr. :
20.wfl ! ilf6 2 1 .�f6 1&h2 22 .1*1c6= is
1 994; another way that leads
B3c) 1 4 . 'l:ld4 ! , evading t h e exchange of : Blb) 16 . . . �dl 17.Sau
queens, looks like the best option for :
(18.ilg5 'bc4 19.ilcl 'Se1
White here. Then play should c ontinue slightly more pleasant for Black.
as follows: 14 . . . Bc8 1 5 . il e 3 'Lld5 f5= was completely level in K. k�
1 6 . �b3 Bc7 ! 1 7 . Bac l Sd7 ! 1 8 . il g 5 ! Adorjan 2515, Budapest 1978 - 261.
ile7 1 9 . ile 7 'l:le7 2 0 . 'l:l f3 0-0 2 1 . 'S fd l 1 8 2 ) 1 6.�d4 ! ? The idea of this m (
'l:ld5 2 2. 'Sd4 h 6 2 3 . h 3 �b8 24. a 3 = w ith I develop the knight t o the better sc
an equal game, Seitaj 2395 - Kotronias : and subsequently try t o pressurize L
1 on c6. This is how matters could evL
2520, Chania 1 99 1 ;
I the sequel 16 . . . ild4 1 7 .'l:ld2 ! '?
1 0 . ii.c6 i s another line with drawing
tendencies, leading to a position with
three pawn islands for each side. I
'
.,

..t
l� � 8 l1
: : �
: B2a) Possible, but less good is 1 7 . . . sfe8 ! ?
1 8 .ila3 ( 18.'Sabl 'bd5 + ) ilg7 1 9 . wfl !
(19.'Sacl ? ! ilh 6) Sed8 20. Se2 'Sd3
Play usually continues 1 O ... J.c6 (20 . . . Sd2 ? ! 21 .'Sd2 'bc4 22.'Sadl ±; 20 . . .
c5!?) 2 1 .'Sae l h6 ! ? 2 2.Se8 (22.g3! ?±)
A) 1 1 .0-0 g6= (JJ . . . ild5!? ) ; 'Se8 2 3 . 'Se8 wh7 24. we2 'Sd7 25 .g3 ! (25.
b3 'bd5 26.'be4 f5 2 7. 'bc5 'bc3 28.wf3
'Sd2=::;) 'Sb7 26 .'Se4 ! ±;
B2 b) 1 7 . . . Stb8! 1 8. 'Sab l ( 18.Sacl ilb2
19.Sc6 'bd5 =) 'l:ld5 ! (18 . . . 'ba4? 19.'Se4!
c5? 1 20.ilc5!±) 19.'l:lb3 (19.'bc4 c500;
19.ila3 a51') ilg7 U9 . . . ilb6!?) 20.ild6
sb6 (20 . . . sb5! ? 2 1 .'Secl00)

191
B2b l ) After 2 1 .�c5 Ba6 22.a3 B lack has accelerate his development.
a choice between the "pass" 22 . . . h6 and [A terrible mistake would be 14 . .<iiJ16') �d4
the direct 22 . . . tl:if4; and White has lost a pawn for nothing. After
1 5 .�f4 �d6 16.tl:ie2 �b4 17 .�c6 bc6 1 8 .a3
�e4 1 9.�g3 �f4 20.tl:if4 'fi.fd8 2 1 .Bac l
'fi.ac8 22.tl:ih5 �g6 2 3 .�h4 e5 24. 'fi.c3 'fi.d4
25.�h3 �d6 26.�f3 tl:id5 27 . 'fi.b3 g6 28 . 'fi.b7
�e6 29.tl:ig3 e4 30.�b3 h5+ I went on to win
in Kazakov 245 7 Kotronias 2610, France
2009; 14.Bd l is committal, as the f-rook is
not surely the one White wants to bring to
d i ; After 14,_,"Efdfil 1 5 . �h6 g6 ! ? (15 . . . il,f8
16.�g5 �e 7 1 7.�h6 il,/8=) 16.'fi.ac l Bac8

B2bll) 22 ... h6 23.�d4 (23.tl:id4? Ba5 24.Becl


sc5 25.sc5 �d4 26.Bc6+) �d4 (23 ...sb8
24.tl:ic5 Ba5 25.�g7 @g7=) 24.tl:id4 c5
25.tl:if3 Bb6 26.tl:ie5 Be8 27.tl:ic4 Be l 28.Be l
Bb3 29.Be2 tl:ib6 30.tl:ib6 ab6 3 1 .@fl b5
32.@e l c4 33.Bc2 @g7 34.a4= will do;
B2b l2) 22 . . . tl:if4 ! ?=;
B2b2) 2 1 .Be2 a5 ! ? (21 ... 'fi.a6 22.a3 'fi.b6
23.'fi.bel ! h5 24.tl:ia5 'fi.b2 25.'fi.b2 �b2
26.tl:ic6 a6=) 22.'fi.be I h6 23 .�c5 'fi.b5
24.�d4 tl:if4 ! (24 . . . a4 25. �g 7 ab3 26.�d4) A) Best is 1 7.�f3 tl:id5 ( 1 7. . .a 6 18.tl:ie4 tl:id4
25 .'fi.e8 'fi.e8 26 . 'fi.e8 @h7 27. �g7 @g7 19.tl:ij6 @h8 20.tl:id7 013 21 .g/3 'fl.cl 22.'fi.cl
, 28.'fi.a8 tl:id3 29.'fi.a5 tl:ib2 30.@fl tl:id l =] tl:id7 23.�d7 'fi.d7 24.'fi.c8 'Sd8 25.'fi.c 7
}l,f8= should lead to a draw too.) 1 8.h3 a6
Now it' s time to return to our main line 1 9 . �fl �f8 20. �gS �e7 2 1 .�h6= with a
10.tl:id7: draw by repetition;

10 ... �d7 1 1 .0-0 e6 12.tl:ic3 � e 7 13.�g4 B) After 1 7 .�g3 ? ! a6 1 8 .�c6 Bc6 1 9.�e5 f6
0-0 20.�e2 @f7 ! 2 1 .h4 tl:id5+ Black had taken
over the initiative and eventually converted
his slight edge to a full point in Kouvatsou
2 1 6 1 - Kotronias 2593, Peristeri 20 10]

b Vjij
ctJ
('
cs b b b
.� bi'. �
14.�c6 ! ? With this capture White relieves
the pressure on the d4 pawn and can now

192
14 ... bc6!= This recapture is safe and 2 0 . de 5 .§.d5 ! 2 l . f4 GZ:lc4 2 2 . llj.!je2 .§.ad8
strong, giving Black equal chances. I have I 2 3 . b 3 l{Je3 ! 24 . .§.dS cd5 2 5 . llj.!je 3 de4
experimented in the past with 14 . . . llj.ljc6? ! but ' 2 6 . h 3 (26. llj.!je4 llj.!j c 5 2 7. @ h l llj.!jf2 28.llj.!jc4
it is very dangerous and I don 't recommend it. · llj.!ja2=) g 6 2 7 . .§.c l ( 2 7 . llj.!je4 .§.d2 28.a4
llj.!jc5 29.@h2 @g7oo) llj.lj h 4 2 8 . llj.!ja7 .§.d2
15. .,th6 .tf6 Now White must decide which 2 9 . llj.!je 3 .§. a2 3 0 . llj.!je4 llj.!jg3 = ;
way he is going to defend his d-pawn. B 2 ) 1 9 . l{J f6 llj.!j f6 2 0 . .t e S llj.!j g 6 reaches
a position that computers actuall y don ' t
16 . .§.fd l This has been the most common seem t o understand. From a human
choice in practice; if the game goes to an perspective it is B lack who is the one
ending it is better for White to have his rooks w i th the superior minor piece here, yet
on dl and c l . engines evaluate the position as far as
lI 6. :{_ic4 '! is of course a mistake due to + 0 . 3 0 i n White ' s favour, which in my
16 . . . llj.ljd4 and White has no compensation for opinion is completely absurd. L et ' s take
his pawn; With I <i.lla d I ! ? White signals his a look at some lines : 2 1 .llj.lje2 ( 2 /.11/'J gQ.
intention to attack rather than go to an ending; hg6+. is c learly good for B lack; J l . !/J0ff3
Black should continue 1 6 . . . @h8 1 7 . GZ:le4 llj.!je7 l{Jd5 22 . .§.cl .§.ac8 2 3 . .§.fel l{J e 7 24 . .§.c4
.§.d7 2 5 . b3 .§.cd8 26.h3 h5 2 7 . .§.a4 @ h 7 !
2 8 . @ h 2 .f6 2 9 . .tf4 GZ:lf5 3 0 . .te3 l{J h 4
1 3 J . llj.!jg3 llj.!jg3 3 2 . @g3 GZ:l/5 00 i s certainly
annoying for White. ) l{Jd5 22 . .§.c 1 GZ:le7
2 3 . .§.c4 .§.d5
B2a) 24 . .§.fc I .§.ad8 2 5 . .§.a4 c 5 ! 2 6 . .§.a7
(26.dc5 ? ? .§.e5! 2 7. llj.!je5 llj.!jc2 - +) l{Jc6
2 7 . .§.c7 l{Jd4 28 . .t d4 c d4 2 9 . llj.!jd2 d3
3 0 . a4 h6+.;
B 2 b ) 24 . .§. e l .§. a d 8 2 5 . f3 h5 2 6 . llj.!je4
@ h 700 In all these variations i t is apparent
that the c omputers c annot evaluate the
merits of the manoeuvre . . . GZ:ld5-e7-f5
A) 18 . .tgS makes no sense with this which, coupled w ith . . . f6, renders the d4
rook configuration, and after 18 . . . .tgS pawn practically indefensible. I would
19.llj.ljg5 llj.!jg5 20.l{JgS .§.ad8 (Also possible even go as far as to say that i t i s B lack
is 20 . . . @g8=) 2 1 .l{Jf3 f6 22 . .§.c l .§.d6 who has the b etter chances but that could
(intending . . . g5) 23.h4 l{Jd5= Black has an b e an exaggeration too, obj e ctively the
excellent game; position is probably equal. ]

.i .
B) 1 8 . .tf4 .§.fd8
.i
/i � iii
4ll i i .·-*- '�

B l ) Equality anses after 1 9 . .teS .t e 5 1 6 . .. @ h S T h i s forces matters, b u t a t the

193
same time the king i s far away from the
principal action should an ending now
I £cc5 26.£d5 £d5=) CL:lg4 2 5 . .1J, e 7 CL:lh6
26 . .1J, c 5 CL:l f5 27 . £gd3
arise. Nevertheless I consider it the best Cl) 27 . . . e5 28.hg6 hg6 29.b4 £cd8 30 . .1J,a7
course as it does not give White time to . £a8 3 1 . .1J,c5 CL:ld4 32 . .1J,d4 £d4 3 3 . £d4 ed4
make decisions about h i s a-rook, already 34.£d4 (34.Yal £a3 35.�fl �f6) £a2=;
placed on c 1 . C2) 27 . . . gh5 28 . .1J,a7 £a8 29.£a3 CL:ld6
[A more intriguing way is 1 6 . . . gfd8 1 7 . CL:le4 30 . .1J,b6 £a3 3 1 .ba3 e5 32.�fl CL:ic4
\lj!je7 1 8 .Yac l £ac8 keeping the king on g8 ' (32 . . . CL:lb5 33.Ycl ed4 34.£c6 CL:la3=)
j ust in case White goes for an ending by 33 . .1J,c5=]
exchanging bishops on g5 .
We' ll now revert to 1 6 . . . �h8 :

0
( J r1
c\
A) The rook lift 1 9 .£c3 �h8 20.gf] can be
answered by 20 . . . £d4 ! (20 . . . .1J,d4 21 .£d4 @
f5 22 . .1J,g7 \lj!jg7 23.\lj!jg 7 �g7 24.£g3 �j8
25.CL:lc5 �j7 26.£d8 £d8 2 7.£d3 £d5 17.CL:le4 \lj!jd8 ! ?
28.£d5 cd5= was equal in Kosteniuk 25 1 6 [Compared to 1 4 . . . \lj!jc6? ! , from d7 the queen
- Tregubov 2607, Kazan 2005) 2 1 . £d4 .1J,d4 can contribute effectively to the defence of
22.CL:lg5 f6 2 3 . \lj!jd4 gh6 24.£f6 e5 25 .\lj!je4 the kingside.]
hg5 26.\lj!jf5 (a surprising position as White is [More natural appears 1 7 ... \lj!je7, keeping the
a piece down, yet the annoying threat gf7 is rooks connected. But the text move has a very
hard to parry.) �g8 ! ? (26 . . . £d8 2 7.g3 gd7? special idea behind it.]
loses to 28.£e6 + -) 27.\lj!jg5 \lj!jg7 28.\lj!je5
CL:ld7 29.lljlje6 �h8 3 0.£f7 \lj!je5 3 1 .\lj!je5 CL:le5
32.£a7oo with an unclear ending that should
probably be drawn;

B) 1 9.£d3 ! is the reason I don' t l ike 16 . . . £fd8


so much for B lack. After 1 9 . . . �h8 20 . .1J,e3±
White' s plus has somehow stabilized, as he
controls c5 with his knight and has clear
targets on the queenside. As for Black, he
seems to have no clear plan;

C) A fter 1 9 . h4 ! ? White does get some


attack, but things are not clear. The line
j ust referred to seems to make further
analysis of 1 9 . h4 ! ? irrelevant, but I will go 18 . .iJ,gS The standard choice in such positions.
on for the sake of completeness: 19 . . . £d5 [ 18.l�Jf<:i \lj!jf6 1 9 . .1J,f4 ( 1 9. .1J,g5 \lj!jg6=) CL:ld5
2 0 . £c3 CL:ld7 2 l . £g3 g6 22 . .1J,g5 �g7 20 . .1J,e5 \lj!jg6 does not offer White much
2 3 . CL:l f6 CL:lf6 24.h5 (24. llJIJ./3 c5 25.dc5 either:

194
After 2 1 . \Jj/jh5 CiJf4 22.\Jj!jg5 CiJg6 23 . .§'.d2 h6
24.\Jj!jg3 \Jj!je5 25 .\Jj!je5 CiJe5+ it is questionable
whether White has enough compensation;
18 .�e3 doesn' t quite work with the rook still
on al due to 18 . . . CiJd5 19 . .§'.ac l ( 19.vcJc5 .§'.c8
20 . .§'.acl e5 2 1 . CiJd7 {jj e 3 22fe3 ed4 23.�(6
\Jj!jf6 24.\Jj!jd4 \Jj!jg6 25 . .§'.c3 h 6=; 12..JbfQ. \Jj!jf6
20 . .§'.acl .§'.jb8 21 .\Jj!je2 .§'.b6 22.b3 h 6 23 . .§'.c5
a5 24.\Jj!jc2 a4 25.ba4 {iJb4 26.\Jj!jb3 {iJd5=)
\Jj/ja5 ! 20.a3 \Jj/jb5 2 1 ..§'.d2 �e7=]

18 �gS 1 9 CiJgS
... .

A) 2 1 .\Jj/jg6 hg6 22 . .8.ac l .8.ac8 23 .�d6! (23. It seems that with the queen on d8 this is the
a3 'fJ,fd8 24.b4 j6 25.�g3 tJJg8= was fine only move to have any meaning.
for Black in Cornejo 2383 - L. Coelho 2389, [ 1 9.\Jj/jg5 was played by Eva Moser against
Asuncion 2009) .§'.fd8 24.�a3 g5 ! is a typical me . . . (Eva Moser 2 3 8 3 - Kotronias 2574,
ending where the d5 knight is not inferior to Liverpool 2008)
the white bishop. After 25 . .§'.c5 f6 26 . .§'.e l (2JL
gJ_ {iJb6 27 . .§'.el .§'.d4 28. .§'.e6 CiJc4 29. .§'.ec6
.§'.c6 30. .§'.c6 CiJa3 31 .ba3 .§'.a4=; 26. .§'.a5 CiJc7!
27. .§'.cl {iJb5 28.�c5 CiJd4 29.tJJJJ tJJh 7 30 . .§'.a 7
e5 31 .�b6 .§'.d5 32.a4 {iJb3:::::.) CiJb6 (26. . . ti'if4!?
27. .§'.c4 e5 28.g3 0g6 29.�c5 .§'.d7 30. .§'.a4
.§'.cd800) 27 . .§'.e6 .§'.d4 28.h3 CiJc4 29 . .§'.cc6 .§'.c6
30 . .§'.c6 CiJa3 3 1 .ba3 .§'.a4 32 . .§'.c3 g4= in spite
of White's best efforts the result is a draw;
/\ /\
B) A sample line illustrating Black 's potential
with queens on the board is 2 1 .\Jj/je2 .§'.ad8 �
22.\Jj!jc4 (22 . .§'.acl CiJe 700) CiJe7 23 .\Jj!jc5 .§'.fe8
24.\Jj/ja7 f6 25.�g3 {jj f5 26 . .§'.ac l h5oo and . . .and now instead of taking on g5 I had two
suddenly the over-optimistic engines say it' s other good moves :
equal, which i s good news for us.
A) 19 . . . \Jj/jd5 ! ? 20.\Jj/jd5 (J0.\Jj!jf4 a500; 20.VJ!ih4
h6 21.b3 .§'.ad800) cd5 2 1 .{iJc5 CiJc4 22.b3 {iJd6
23.g4 ! ? with an unclear ending;

B) 19 . . . CiJc4 ! may well be the best. If Black


manages to trade the knights then he has no
problems at all.

18 . . . CiJd5 19.�e5 allows Black to illustrate


a very fine point of having the queen on
d8: 19 . . . �e5 20.de5 \Jj/jb8 ! and suddenly
White is under a double attack on b2 and e5 .

1 95
B l ) 20.V/!Jc l V/!Jd5 2 1 .l2:Jc3 (21 .tZ'lc5 lZ'ld6�) [22.£d3 cd4 2 3.V/!Jf4 lZ'ld7 24.l2:Jd7 V/!Jd7]
V/!Ja5 22.b3 lZ'ld6 23.tZ'la4 Bac8 (23 . . . V/!Jd5!?)
24.tZ'lc5 (24.V/!Jc5 V/!Jc7! 25.Bacl Bfd8 26.d5 22 ... £ad8 23.Bd3 ! ?
lZJe4 2 7.V/!Jc6 V/!Jb8 28.V/!Ja6 Bel 2 9. Bcl V/!Jf4 [23 .Bac l @g8 24.h3 c4oo L . . . f6]
30. £c2 h 6� is not worse for Black.) gfd8
25.V/!Jf4 @g8= is a finely balanced position; 23 ... cd4
B2) 20.b3 lZ'ld6 2 1 .V/!Jf4 (21 . V/!Jd8 £fd8

.i •
22.tZ'ld6 £d6 23.Bacl £ad8=) tZ'le4
22.V/!Je4 V/!Jd5 (22 . . . V/!Jd6 23.Bacl) 2 3 . V/!Jd5 .i
cd5 24.Bac l (24.Bdcl g5 25.Bc 7 a5
26. Bacl @g7 27. Blc6 @g6) a5 2 5 . Bc7
i ii
I
g5= with a balanced ending. ] '.&\ i i
19 ... h6 20.tZ'lf3 A t this point, a draw was �
agreed in Maksimenko 2505 - Kotronias i �
2614, Germany 2007.

.i .�. .i. •
·� i ···a;
·
1.1·· i i; i 24.Badl
[24.l2:Jf7 @g8 2 5 . tZ'lh6 @h7

A) 26.V/!Jh4 gh6 27.V/!Je7 @h8 28.Bh3 V/!Jf5


29 . £h6 (29.£f3 lZJd5!) @gs 30.V/!Jh4 @g7
3 l .£h5 V/!Jf6D+;

B) 26.l2:Jf7 @g8 27 . l2:Jh6=]

24 ... @h7 25.h4


Correct is now: [25 .ild4 V/!Ja2 ! ; 2 5 .L".ig3 tZ'lc4 ! ]

20 ... V/!JdS! 2 1 .tZ'leS 2 5... V/!Jb7 26.ild4


[2 1 .b3 l2:Jd7 22.Bac l a5 ! 2 3 .V/!Jf4 a4 24.l2:Je5 [26.ilg3 lZ'ld5 27. V/!Jg4 f5 28. V/!Jg6 @h8oo]
ab3 25.tZ'ld7 V/!Jd7 26.ab3 £a5+]
26 ... ildS=
2 1 . .. cS= 22.V/!Jf4 Kotronias

END OF PART VI

196