ForumHelpSearchMy ProfileSite InfoGuests InfoRepertoireLinks
Hello everyone,
One can't ignore the most important event in the chess calendar, which is the annual Chess Olympiad. Many things were written about the playing conditions in this event. I was coaching the Israeli Women's team and so I can confirm that the playing hall was inadequate for such a big event. However, I would prefer to focus on the games.

Download PGN of August '14 1 e4 e5 games

>> Previous Update >>

Spanish - The Marshall Attack [C89]

The game Adams, M - Aronian, L 41st Chess Olympiad Tromso 2014, featured a long theoretical line. The players followed the game Caruana, F - Aronian, L Zurich 2014, for the first 20 moves.

Here, after 20.Kg2, Aronian introduced an improvement over the aforementioned game and equalised without any visible problems. A theoretically important game, and now the ball is back in White's court - he may look for a slight edge after 21.Nxf3, perhaps.

The Archangel Variation 6...Bc5 [C78]

Another long theoretical line was discussed in the game Nakamura, H - Kasimdzhanov, R 41st Chess Olympiad Tromso 2014, and reached the following important diagram position after 18.Be3:

Kasimdzhanov went for the extremely rare 18...c5, but didn't managed to equalise, and Nakamura won rather convincingly. Black can try to improve upon his play on moves 20-21.

The Schliemann/Jaenisch 6...d6 [C65]

In the game Perunovic, M - Radjabov, T 41st Chess Olympiad Tromso 2014, Black stayed faithful to the Schliemann Variation of the Spanish, but this time went for the 6...d6 line instead of his previously played 6...Bc5.

Here, after 7...Be7, the Serbian GM went for the uncommon 8.Be3 and Radjabov was unable to solve his opening problems. Moreover, I couldn't find a clear improvement in my analysis and so it seems that the line with 6...d6 leads to White's advantage.

Scotch 4...Nf6, 8...Ba6 [C45]

In the game Nedev, T - Kramnik, V 41st Chess Olympiad Tromso 2014, the Russian player showed his great opening preparation once again.

White erred in the diagram position by moving his queen to f3 instead of the 14.Qe1 which promised roughly equal chances. The line with 10.f4 doesn't promise any opening advantage and 10...d6 is a good way to prove it.

Scotch 4...Qf6 5.Nb3 [C45]

The game Khatanbaatar, B - Fressinet, L 41st Chess Olympiad Tromso 2014, saw an important line of the 4...Qf6 system.

After 7...Nge7 White went astray with 8.Be3?! instead of 8.f4. This allowed the tactic 8...Bxh2 and White didn't get enough compensation for the pawn. If after 4...Qf6 White wants to avoid the 4...Bc5 system he has to either play 5.Nb5 or 6.Nc3 after 5.Nb3. The line chosen in the game favours Black.

Two Knights 'Fried Liver Attack' [C57]

A forbidden line with 5...Nxd5 was tested in the game Shirov, A - Sulskis, S 41st Chess Olympiad Tromso 2014.

In the important diagram position after 8...Ncb4 Shirov chose the sharp 9.a3, which doesn't seem to offer White any advantage if Black defends accurately. In my opinion, White has to choose between 9.Bb3 and 9.0-0. In the game Black erred as early as move 11 and obtained a lost position. Instead 11...Qh4 was necessary, when White has to prove he has enough resources ... which I was unable to do in my analysis. Placing the hand in the mouth of the lion wasn't a wise idea from the Lithuanian player. He should at least have studied the line properly, I wouldn't recommend playing this line with Black without a very deep analysis, though the theoretical evaluation is probably too harsh for Black. In reality he seems to have his chances.

Vienna game 4...Bc5, 5...d5 [C28]

A very sharp line occurred in the game Amdouni, Z - Eljanov, P 41st Chess Olympiad Tromso 2014. Eljanov decided to surprise his opponent with the relatively uncommon 5...d5:

The reply 6.exd5 was already inaccurate, a serious error came on the 7th move (7.Qd2? when both 7.Nge2 and 7.Nf3 were better), and 8.Qxf4? could have cost White the game if Black had answered it with 8...Nd4.

5...d5 is an interesting way to complicate matters, though one has to be ready to play a complex position. As you can see even strong GMs make mistakes in these types of positions.

King's Bishop Gambit 3.Bc4 [C33]

Finally, I want to offer a game which I played in a side event in Tromso for your attention, Erikstad, Olav Age-Mikhalevski,V Arctic Challenge Tromso 2014.

Here I decided to surprise my opponent with the uncommon 7...Nf6, instead of the 7...Ne7, which I analysed for you a while ago in the game Polgar,J (2686)-Topalov,V (2786)/Mexico City MEX 2010. White soon went astray with 10.Nb5?, when instead 10.Bd2 was better, but Black would still have retained a slight edge. Though 7...Nf6 is not objectively the best move it leads to some good play for Black. Anyway, White's opening choice really can't be recommended.


See you next month, Victor.

>> Previous Update >>

Please post your Kingpawn Opening queries on the 1 e4 e5 Forum, or subscribers can write to if you have any questions.