ForumHelpSearchMy ProfileSite InfoGuests InfoRepertoireLinks
Happy New Year everyone,
The new year has started with two super tournaments, but in this update I'll concentrate on games from the very end of 2007. Lately we've see the growing popularity of the Fianchetto Variation, while the Classical system is always popular. So this time I'll divide the material into two major parts. Victor

Download PGN of January '08 KID games

Classical: The Bayonet Attack

Usually I deal with GM games, but this time I decided to make an exception as the line that occurred in the game Pelletier, Y - Mueller, Le, Weinhachtsopen 2007, is interesting.

White has just played 10.c5, which is a rare but interesting idea. Black rejected the sacrifice and gradually lost. The line which occurred in the game doesn't promise White an advantage, but Black has to accept the sacrifice. However the line Black transposed to is in White's favour, and moreover, White's plan with Bd2-e1-f2 is appealing and deserves further tests.

Classical Main line with 9.Ne1

Peralta, F - Inarkiev, E, World Cup 2007, featured a popular pawn sacrifice with Piket's 16.Nd3 and further pressure along the c-file.

In the diagram position White introduced the novelty 21.Be1 and retained some initiative, until Black blundered on the 45th move. However White then returned the blunder and eventually lost on time in a drawish position.

Another game in Piket's line is Nielsen,PH-Likavsky,T, Bundesliga 2007-8:

This time Black answered 16.Nd3 with Ivanchuk's 16...Rf7 instead of the 16...Bd7 of the previous game. This time the novelty was also the 18.Be1 move, but here it proved to be insufficient to obtain any advantage. Moreover, after stabilizing the position Black took control of the initiative and was very close to winning the game, and it was only his indecisiveness which allowed White to save half a point. In general, the opening variation which occurred in these games is very complicated and deserves further tests.

Classical: Azeri system with 6...Bg4.

The game Tomashevsky, E - Mamedov, Ra, World Cup 2007, featured a favourite line of the Azeri players with 6...Bg4, White answering it with Van Wely's 8.Rc1:

White soon obtained a slight, but lasting advantage, and despite an inaccuracy on the 26th move he won the game in solid style. This game does nothing to change the evaluation of this line as being suspicious for Black.

The Averbakh System

This system is not a very frequent guest in tournament practice these days, and Bareev is one of the very few who still applies it on the high level. Bareev,E-Becerra Rivero, World Cup 2007:

In the diagram position Black chose a rare plan with 7...a6, preparing ...b5. Bareev also answered it with a side line, 10.Qc2. In order to reduce the pressure Black sacrificed a pawn, but failed to obtain sufficient compensation. The game is a good example of a typical Bareev squeeze... The pawn sacrifice in the opening as well as the entire line are dubious.

Fianchetto Variation

The game Ponomariov, R - Kasimdzhanov, R, Chess Champions League 2007, featured the always poisonous Yugoslav System, the critical position arising after 12...Bh6:

White answered with the unfortunate 13.e3?! which allowed Black to seize the initiative, after which White was never allowed back into the game. A surprisingly easy win from Rustam Kasimdzhanov, who showed a brilliant mastery of nuances of this complicated system. I believe 13.e3?! is the reason for White's problems in this game, so White has to come back to 13.Ba1.

The game Savchenko, B - Amonatov, F, Russian Cup Serpukhov 2007, saw the not very popular system with 7...Nbd7, which was answered by the side line 8.Qc2, and 9 Rd1:

In the diagram position Black chose the extremely rare move 9...a6 and soon sacrificed a pawn, but failed to achieve sufficient compensation. White was convincingly leading the game to a win, when he started to err and allowed serious counterplay. Fortunately for him Black then returned the favour and received no second chance. An interesting game, which proved that Black's opening strategy is very suspicious.

The last, but definitely not least, game is Aronian, L - Inarkiev, E, World Cup 2007, which saw Inarkiev's favourite Panno variation with 7...Rb8, answered by 8 h3:

Here Black went for a provocative side line with 8...Bf5, but Aronian was well-prepared and seized the advantage, after which it seems that Inarkiev was never allowed in the game, and White won convincingly. A high-class display from the former World Cup winner. The game proved that the side line with 8...Bf5 is dubious.

Enjoy the issue and see you in February, Victor

Don't hesitate to share your thoughts and suggestions with me. Any queries or comments to the KID Forum, or to me directly at (subscribers only) would be most welcome.