"Mainstream" Daring Defences
Grünfeld & Dutch
Mainstream Daring Defences April '02 Update
Welcome to this month's Update.
It was nice to see a synthesis of the two defences considered here in a recent game at the Polish Women's Championship: 1.d4 f5 2.c4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.f3 d5 5.cxd5 Nxd5 6.e4 Nb6- from the Dutch into the Grunfeld!! Unfortunately after 7.Bd3 Bg7 8.Nge2 Nc6 9.Be3 0-0 10.e5! Black's bishop on g7, the key piece in either defence, was shut out of the game. You can see more on 4.f3 below in the Grunfeld section.
All this month's new games are easily downloaded in PGN format using ChessPub.exe, open ChessPub.exe, put the date on, say, 13th May 2002, and then click on 'Daring Defences', over on the right. All these games should appear (and the new ChessPub Guides, too)!
Whereas by now I am used to the Dutch not figuring in a world class tournament, unless, of course, Mikhail Gurevich happens to be playing, it is disappointing that the Linares and NAO Super GM events passed by without a single Grunfeld. At the moment 1.e4 is dominant at the highest level.
Grunfeld Exchange 7.Bc4 [D89]
Hello GM McDonald,
I am interested in the exchange sac line in the old main line Exchange Grunfeld (now that's a mouthful). Can you give me the current status of this line? I have attached all the games I have in this line.
The line Doug refers to is 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Bc4 c5 8.Ne2 Nc6 9.Be3 0-0 10.0-0 Bg4 11.f3 Na5 12.Bd3 cxd4 13.cxd4 Be6 14.d5!? A very ambitious move which challenges the Grunfeld's right to exist.
Recently this has been overshadowed by the 14.Rc1 line, but it is coming back to the fore. White has been scoring some crushing wins and in a critical line the theoretical verdict is very much with him.
If Karpov in his Seville match with Kasparov had played 14.d5, rather than the 12.Bxf7+ variation, we would probably all know a great line against the exchange sac- Kasparov would have shown us his home analysis. However, no one has ventured it against the World No.1!
Beginning with the position after 14...Bxa1 15.Qxa1 f6, White has two ideas:
The first is 16.Rb1, which takes away from Black the option of Qb6+. I trust Mikhalevski in the opening and I like the way he gives back the exchange to neutralise White's attack in the selected game. Have a look at Najer-Mikhalevski.
Much more dangerous for Black is 16.Bh6! White scores a couple of fine wins in the games I have analysed here. Check out the brilliant and theoretically crucial game Kobalija-Zakharstov.
I expect by now you want to know how Black can avoid this variation, at least until the theoretical verdict looks a bit healthier for him. I suggest after 7.Bc4 c5 8.Ne2 0-0 9.0-0 Nc6 10.Be3 you try 10...Bd7!? [D87]. This is a perfectly OK move and dodges all the heavy weight theory. In the game I've selected here, Black, in fantastic tactical style .... is absolutely crushed. However, look at the improvement suggested on move 12 in Peng Zhaoqin-Nijboer.
Grunfeld Exchange 7.Nf3 c5 8.Rb1 0-0 9.Be2 Nc6 [D85]
Now 10.d5 Bxc3+ leads to a long variation of enormous positional complexity. White's pawn structure looks tatty and full of dark square holes, but he might suddenly emerge with a pair of unstoppable passed pawns or an irresistible attack on Black's king! I think 10.d5 Ne5 offers Black better chances, but 10...Bxc3+ would certainly upset an opponent who likes a 'neat' game. Have a look at the detailed analysis in Biriukov-Voitsekhovsky.
Grunfeld Exchange 7.Nf3 c5 8.Rb1 0-0 9.Be2 Qa5 [D85]
Along with 9...Nc6 above, this is another method of avoiding the mainline 9...cxd4 10.cxd4 Qa5+. Going after the c3 pawn is risky as afterwards it is difficult to shake off White's central pressure; and compared to the 10...Qa5+ variation, there is no cavalry to rescue Black in the shape of a rook's pawn galloping furiously down the board towards a1! Nevertheless Black has done well in the few games I have seen in this line. White overpresses and soon collapses in Watanabe-De la Villa Garcia.
A sound and promising response to the highly aggressive line 8.e5 b5 9.Qb3 Nfd7 10.h4 c5 11.e6 has been discovered- namely 11...c4! Nevertheless, Black players still haven't given up trying to resuscitate other ideas such 11..fxe6? The game given this month may well be the last word on that particular move. After all, it is hardly a good recommendation for 11...fxe6 that Black is absolutely lost even though after 18 moves White has every piece apart from his king's knight back on its starting square!
Check out Gershon-Kovchan
We start this section with a short game to demonstrate that White's gambits are often more harmful to himself than to Black. After all, assuming 1...f5 isn't a mistake- and the fact that Kasparov can't ever win against it must mean something- then there is no reason why Black should be crushed by a pawn sacrifice. Have a look at Wikstrom-Johansson [A80] and remember to come out fighting!
Last time we looked at an interesting antidote to the Stauntonesque Gambit 1.d4 f5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.e4 in Toulzac-Rausis, A83. Now we look at White's same idea versus 2...d5. Rather than grabbing a pawn Black makes a positional pawn sacrifice that keeps White under constant pressure. Check out Tikhomirov-Grunberg [A80]
I am a beginner/intermediate player. I was told that
the "Stonewall Dutch" is a good opening, because it
was easy to play and fairly sound. My questions to
you are, do you cover the stonewall variation on your
site? And do you believe it really is a good opening?
I was planning on playing it, 1.d4 d5; 2.c4 e6; 3.Nf3
c6; 4.e3 f5 or 4.g3 f5. That way I can avoid the
Hopton, or the Staunton Gambit.
OK, I have one last question. If the above questions
are a "no", what do you think is a good opening
against 1.d4? I have a VERY limited time to study, so
I would like something fairly easy to understand.
Thank you vary much for your time!
Yes, the Stonewall is covered on the site. Simply go into Chesspub, put A90 in the empty box at the top, press 'fetch' and you will get a lot of Stonewall games. Also putting A81 in the box- which covers lines in which White plays an early b2-b3 and Bb2- will get some useful Stonewall set-ups. As well as this you can download the Stonewall ebook and print it out and take it with you to tournaments.
For some reason a lot of players are afraid of the Staunton Gambit, but if you look up the Staunton games in ChessPub [A82], you will see Black is doing very well. The main reason why 1.d4 f5 might be annoying to a Stonewall player is 2.Bg5!?: the Trompovsky treatment.
As far as move order goes, remember that if you begin 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 White has the option of 3.Nc3 when if 3...c6 4.e4!?- this Gambit line is more dangerous than the Staunton. So play 3...f5 instead. Now according to some books 4.cxd5 exd5 is supposed to favour White as Black hasn't been able to recapture cxd5, but I don't really see how.
Here's another idea. How about the Botvinnik recipe of 1.d4 e6 2.c4 f5 with a Dutch or 2.e4 d5 with a French? Most 1.d4 players will avoid 2.e4, but of course you would have to know what to do against it. Perhaps I should recommend my French pages here...
There is relatively little theory on the Stonewall and Black gets a solid position in the centre. However, you mustn't assume that Black's centre is set in stone and must stand its ground at all costs. This month I've added two more games on the Stonewall. They illustrate its versatility: Black gets a good game in both cases by dissolving the centre and then playing e6-e5! Start by playing through these games and see if the Stonewall is for you. They are Hova-Boe [D95] and Garcia Palermo-Peralta [D90].
I found out the hard way that 8.Nd5 deserves respect when former chesspublishing author Alexander Volzhin used it to beat me at Hastings a couple of years ago. Incidentally, the photo of Alexander on the '1.e4 others' webpage was taken during that game. In the game selected here Black adopts an enterprising plan which I wish I had known about! Have a look at Gonda-Markus.
Here is an email about the Leningrad:
I've just recently started playing the Dutch, intitially as
an experiment, after being a Kings Indian player for most of my life.
My results have been surprisingly good and I wondered if
you covered the lines recommended in Steffan Pedersen's
book on the Dutch, in which he suggests fianchettoing
your king's bishop where possible. Especially the .....Qe8
line in the Leningrad?
I played the Stonewall many years ago for a brief period and
got miserable results with it!
Thank you for any insight,
Thanks to James for the email. Yep, all the lines considered in Pedersen's book are on the site. For the 7...Qe8 lines in the Leningrad, go to Chesspub, type in A87 in the empty box at the top, press 'fetch' and you will get the games. Among the ordinary games will be the Chesspubguide to the 7.Nc3 Qe8 8.d5 Leningrad, another will be the Chesspubguide to 7.Nc3 Qe8 without 8.d5 and so on. If you start with these 'roadmaps' they will tell you what games are given in each line besides an overview of the material.
I'm sorry you didn't do well with the Stonewall. Maybe the games added this month might make you change your mind? For what it's worth, I also used to be a King's Indian player but then gave it up for the Queen's Gambit, then I moved to the Slav and finally the Dutch.
On page 20 of the Dutch eBook you comment about 4 Bxf6: "It is by no means
clear that this is White's best response. A promising alternative is ".
However, there is no alternative listed.
And in this general line: Would it make any difference concerning the
bishop capture if the move order was 1 d4 f5 2 Bg5 Nf6?
Firstly, apologies for the unfinished sentence. I guess it's like the last page in a murder mystery being missing!
To find out what the move is, go into ChessPub, put the ECO code for 1.d4 f5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bg5, which is A80, in the empty box on the top left hand side and click on 'fetch like'. Then you can scroll through the games that appear until you find the Chesspubguide to 1.d4 f5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bg5. Open this game and see what it says about 3...d5. The references are to the games Grobelny-Socko, Ulibin-Malaniuk, and Anastasian-Dzhumaev and-newly added in this update- Neverov- Jakubiec. All these games are given with notes on ChessPub.
If you look in the game Anastasian-Dzhumaev you will find the answer to the mystery: at move 4 there is the note 'A promising alternative is 4.f3' followed by some analysis.
Unfortunately the move was missing in the ebook- it's now been put in. The omission however is a useful reminder that the ebooks are only guides: to really study a line you have to go into the games referred to by accessing ChessPub.
Regarding the second question, if 1.d4 f5 2.Bg5 after 2...Nf6 White has 3.Bxf6 exf6 4.e3 d5 5.c4 with immediate pawn pressure on d5. This is a good form of a Trompovsky as proved in many games, including a couple by Kasparov in simul' games. Note that if White has played 2.Nc3 before Bg5 he doesn't have the option of c2-c4.
This month I've selected a great fighting game in the 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bg5 variation. Black is on the brink of defeat but he turns the tables in amazing style after White falters. Have a look at Neverov-Jakubiec.
A surprisingly venomous move. White wants to play in similar style to the Samisch in the King's Indian against the Leningrad. Thus if 4...d6 5.e4. Black often labours hard to get in f7-f5 in the King's Indian, but only after the centre has been stabilised by the moves e7-e5 by Black and d4-d5 by White. In contrast the centre looks rather flimsy for Black in the Leningrad. This means that Black can get into difficulties playing absolutely natural moves.
Black could avoid this line with 3...d6, when if 4.e4 e5 looks fine. But 4.Bg5 interferes with the fianchetto.
It is ironic that Black is now OK against the sharp move 4.h4 but it is the unpretentious move 4.f3 that causes problems! Have a look at Radziewicz-Dworakowska.
Well that's all for this update. I hope you found some of the ideas interesting- feel free to email me with queries or suggestions on improving the site. Meanwhile good luck with your chess! To get in touch just send an email to me at email@example.com.
Jon Tisdall is back with the Maverick DD's in May