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What's new November 2002

Welcome to the November Update!

Hi everyone,

The Olympiad in Bled, wonderful event though it was - apart from the ridiculous time control (1 1/2 hours for the whole game with 30 seconds added each move) - didn't turn out to be the diamond mine of King's Indian games that we were hoping for. I blame Kasparov. When he played it so did everyone else. He stopped and all the lemmings followed. So, I have abandoned plans for an Olympiad special and included games from a number of other top class events that have taken place over the last month or so.

Pride of place goes to the German Bundesliga which has almost rivalled the Olympiad for the amount of games provided.

To download the November '02 KI games directly in PGN form, click here: Download Games


The Ukranian Grandmaster Mikhail Golubev was involved in two of these Bundesliga games. In the first game he blows away Jereon Piket in a sharp Saemisch. White has just played 19 b5 to force the exchange of queens. Or so he thought!

In his other game Golubev was hit by a powerful novelty in a supposedly harmless ending. Schandorff's 12 Nd5!

is probably going to put this method (9...Nbd7) of meeting the Exchange Variation out of business. Black players shouldn't fret too much though as there are at least 3 other good ways to meet the Exchange.

Bareev-Tkachiev is interesting. Black played a supposedly inferior line against 5 Bd3 and quickly got a winning position. The key moment came on move 10 when Tkachiev preferred to retreat his knight (10...Ne8!)

to the usual 10...Re8.

In the game Graf-Kovalev the German grandmaster had another chance to try out one of his pet lines, the pressure-mounting 11 c5!?

in the Classical (6...e5) Saemisch. Kovalev just followed a previous game of Graf's until he had a lost endgame and only some sloppy endgame play by White saved him.

In yet another Saemisch I take a look at the line 6...a6 7 Bd3 c5?!,

as requested by a US correspondence player. Larry Christiansen's 8 dxc5 dxc5 9 e5! looks as convincing as ever. Incidentally, please keep the questions flowing but don't expect a personal reply. Your queries will be dealt with here where everyone can share.

The Classical remains the bedrock of the King's Indian and we have some more games in the Na6 variation. This month we shall look at 8 Re1 and in particular the 11 a3!?

played in Nielsen-De la Riva from Bled. True, after 11...Bxf3 White must recapture with the pawn but it seems that the positive factors in his position more than compensate for the weakening of the kingside.

We also have three games with the main line 7...Nc6. 10 Be3 is currently the most popular variation of the Mar del Plata variation, and Korchnoi's 13 a4 the most popular line for White. 13...a5!

looks like the best response and it is covered in Nikitin-Solovjov.

See you next month.

All the best

Joe Gallagher

Any queries or comments to would be most welcome.