What's New- July 2001
GM John Emms rounds up the latest in these Nimzo and Benoni Systems, with the help of guest GM Chris Ward in the Nimzo-Indian.
We start this month with another look at the notorious Flick-Knife Attack, the bane of many Modern Benoni players. However, in the game Lautier- Degraeve, Clichy 2001, JUL01/01, the well-known grandmaster could prove no advantage for White against accurate black defence in the critical line 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 c5 3 d5 e6 4 Nc3 exd5 5 cxd5 d6 6 e4 g6 7 f4 Bg7 8 Bb5+ Nbd7!?.
Is the ball firmly back in White's court? Does 8...Nbd7 live?
For the next game (Mikhalevski-Marin, Andorra 2001, JUL01/02) we move onto the much calmer waters of the line 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nf3 c5 4 d5 d6 5 Nc3 exd5 6 cxd5 g6 7 e4 a6. This move order continues to be popular for Black as it avoids the main line of the Modern Classical Variation (with h3 and Bd3).
This month's Modern Benoni Statistics (TWIC 346-349): 24 games, 13 white wins, 6 draws and 5 black wins (Black scored 33%).
A new weird Benoni? In fact the idea is quite old, but I'm sure not many of you will be familiar with it. In the game Agdestein-Forintos, Esbjerg 1983, JUL01/06, the Hungarian GM came up with the extravagant 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nf3 c5 4 d5 exd5 5 cxd5 d6 6 Nc3 Qa5!?
Black prepares an early expansion with ...b7-b5. Forintos was successful here and has utilised the line since - it reappeared in an Austrian League match this year (thanks to Tony Kosten for alerting me to this line).
This month's statistics: 32 games, 12 white wins, 14 draws, 6 black wins (Black scored 41%).
We begin with the game J.Horvath-Solozhenkin, Helsinki 2001, JUL01/04, an amazingly complicated game from one of the main lines of the g3 Queen's Indian - 1 d4 Nf6 2 Nf3 e6 3 c4 b6 4 g3 Ba6 5 b3 Bb4+ 6 Bd2 Be7 7 Bg2 c6 8 Bc3 d5 9 Nbd2 Nbd7 10 0-0 0-0 11 Re1 c5 12 e4
Here Black plays the slightly offbeat 12...dxc4!? (the main move here is the simplifying 12...dxe4) and the game soon plunges into unfathomable complications.
In Van Wely-Van der Wiel, Leeuwarden 2001, JUL01/05, Black plays some good moves to equalise in the line 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nf3 b6 4 g3 Bb7 5 Bg2 Be7 6 0-0 0-0 7 Re1!? Na6, but somehow manages to lose a completely drawn rook ending.
Finally we have the game Izoria-Khukhashvili, Batumi 2001, JUL01/03, where Black plays provocatively with 1 d4 Nf6 2 Nf3 e6 3 c4 Bb4+ 4 Nbd2 b6 5 e3 Bb7 6 Bd3 d6!?. White wins quickly, but is this line really that bad for Black?
Queen's Indian statistics: 67 games, 24 white wins, 28 draws, 15 black wins (Black scored 43%).
Nimzo-Indian statistics: 97 games, 37 white wins, 20 draws 40 black wins (Black scored 52%).
Two more 'Classicals' for you this month. I promise to change the variation in August although it is true that 4 Qc2 is just so popular at present. Anyway in my first tournament for a while I utilised the 5 e4 line again, JUL01/08, and hopefully you'll see how NOT to handle it!
In Privman-Hebert, JUL01/07, Black wins effortlessly by employing a handy pin-escaping manoeuvre. A common theme that usually just liquidates but here is so much better.
Well, till next time.
Remember, if you have any questions or remarks on the Benoni, Weird Benonis, Nimzo Indian, Queen's Indian or Bogo-Indian, we'd be glad to here from you.
Please e-mail John or Chris at