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The Latest Developments - September 2003


This update is a tiny bit late, but my excuse is that I played two closed tournaments in September, and have only been home for a week.

Note that there is a new E-mailbag for this month.


To download the September '03 Flank Openings games directly in PGN form click here: Download Games

English 1...e5

English 1...c5

English 1...Nf6 & others

1 g3


English Opening



[A21]: Another strange Bh3 move:

which is similar to Suba's idea from a while ago, see Zvjaginsev,V - Tseshkovsky,V.

[A28]: My second visit to Cairo didn't go so well, chess-wise, as my first, but I was very happy to be able to visit the pyramids and temples at Saqqara and Dahshur!

One other good memory was the game Kosten,A - Ahmed,E. I am not really that interested in the Dragon, as such, but I couldn't help but notice the recent coverage of the exchange sacrifice on Chris Ward's Dragons section, and this greatly influenced my play in this game!


[A34]: One of my recent opponents told me that he only plays the Rubinstein when White has already played Nf3, because he is worried about the check on a4:

However, in Bareev,E - Xu Jun White soon found himself in considerable trouble after this.

[A34]: I was surprised to see Black take on c1 in the following mainline Nimzovitch position:

As Black swaps his active knight for a bishop that is still a little way from being able to move, look at Halkias,S - Sutovsky,E for the 'low-down' on this.

[A34]: Tkachiev,V - Palac,M features another sharp Nimzovitch line, and this time White plays the alternative 6 Bb5+. However, after 6...N8c6 7 d4 cxd4 8 a3, instead of the 'automatic' 8...dxc3, Palac played 8...Bd7!?:

which I thought led to a winning attack for White. Apparently not, as Black shows a strong new move. Incidentally, this must be one of the longest theoretical variations in the English, as this novelty arrived on move 22!

1...Nf6 & others

[A10]: Hulak,K - Fedorov,A seems to be heading for a standard Botvinnik set-up after 1 c4 g6 2 g3 Bg7 3 Bg2 e5 4 e4 when Black plays the surprising novelty 4...Nh6!?:

[A17]: Mamedyarov,S - Naiditsch,A features another 4 g4 massacre! When will the bloodshed stop?

1 g3 - the Flexible Variation

[A00]: Black plays a new move after following a Polgar - Xie Jun game, but then proceeds to play incredibly passively in Minasian,A - Becerra Rivero,J , and quickly pays the price.


Please feel free to share any of your thoughts with me, whatever they are, suggestions, criticisms (just the polite ones, please), etc. Drop me a line at the Flank Openings Forum, or subscribers can write directly to

Till next month, Tony K

English 1...e5

English 1...c5

English 1...Nf6 & others

1 g3