ForumHelpSearchMy ProfileSite InfoGuests InfoRepertoireLinks
Hello everyone,
This update is slightly unusual as it contains two of my own recent games and also three games from the Mamedyarov-Ragger match, all of them in the Exchange Variation of the Spanish. Moreover, seven games in this update were played in the Spanish Opening. I would also mention that you should pay special attention to the very important theoretical game Karjakin, S - Svidler, P.

Download PGN of August '15 1 e4 e5 games

>> Previous Update >>

Spanish - Marshall with 12.d3 [C89]

The game Vachier - Lagrave, M - Adams, M 48th Biel GM 2015, featured an important line of the Marshall with 12.d3.

In the diagram position Adams presented a novelty, 18...Rae8 instead of 18...Rfe8, and retained roughly equal chances before allowing White a favourable exchange on d6 (26...Be4?!). After that he was under pressure and following some additional inaccuracies the game was over. A good technical win for the Frenchman, but Black's play can be improved by means of 26...Bc7.

Yurtaev Variation with 13.d5 [C78]

Another long theoretical battle occurred in the game Karjakin, S - Svidler, P 68th ch-RUS 2015.

In this important theoretical position the Russian GM showed the improvement 27.Rc1! upon the game Lopez Martinez, J - Bellia, F/San Sebastian 2008, which featured 27.Rc2. Svidler's reaction 27...Rbe8 was inaccurate, but the position remained just slightly better for White. However, then Peter committed a mistake 30...Qf6? and after Sergey returned the favour with 31.Nc6 another one 31...Bb6? White obtained a serious edge and eventually won the game. An important theoretical game, although Black seems to be able to keep the balance with 27...Bb6. I would be happy to see a confirmation of this conclusion in practice.

The Berlin Wall with 9...h5 [C67]

The game Yu Yangyi-Malakhov,V TCh-CHN 2015, saw one of the known tabias in the Berlin endgame:

Here the Chinese GM deviated from the popular 15.g4 with 15. a3, which is one of the computer's suggestions, but Black reacted accurately and the position remained equal before White started to push with 27.g4?! Now it was White who had to play accurately, but started to err and at some point there was no way back. A good technical win for the Russian GM. The line remains equal and so the ball is in White's court.

The Exchange Variation with 5...f6 [C67]

Our first game in this system is Mamedyrov, S - Ragger, M, the first game from the Mamedyrov, S - Ragger, M match 2015.

This key position came about after White's 16.Nd2. Here the Austrian GM went astray with 16...d5 and Mamedyarov's 18.b4!! crushed through Black's queenside and lead to a quick win. A convincing win from Mamedyarov, who exploited Black's inaccuracy in the opening. Instead of 16...d5?! Black would be ok had he played 16...Ne7.

Our second game in this section is the third game from this Mamedyrov, S - Ragger, M match 2015. This time the Azeri GM surprised his opponent early in the game.

In this well-known position, which also occurred in the first game of the match, Shahriyar suddenly played 7.e5!?, instead of the normal 7.Nxd4. Black reacted correctly and seemed to achieve a drawish endgame with opposite-coloured bishops, but was then outplayed and lost the game. A nice technical win for Mamedyarov. The line with 7.e5 is interesting, but Black seems to be able to equalise if he plays 11...Bg7. The aforementioned endgame might be also drawn, but Black should create counterplay on the queenside as soon as possible.

Finally the third game in the Exchange Variation is the fifth game from this same Mamedyarov, S - Ragger, M match, which featured another rare, but interesting idea from Mamedyarov.

This time he surprised his opponent one move earlier and played 6.Re1!? Ragger's reaction 6...c5 was reasonable, but his 11...b6 was dubious and White obtained a dangerous initiative. Thus 15.Qxd4 and 16.b4 could set serious problems, but White erred with 16.a4?! and then 19.Rc1?, lost a piece and soon had to resign. This was the third time in the match that Mamedyarov managed to surprise his opponent, but this time his aggression backfired. Nevertheless, 6.Re1 is interesting and I expect to see it at the top level in the near future.

Aronian System with 4...g6 [C70]

The game Papp, Petra-Mikhalevski,V ZMDI Open Dresden 2015, saw a critical line with an exchange sacrifice:

The diagram position, which happened for example in Movsesian, S - Durarbayli, V/Doha QAT 2014, is considered to be dangerous for Black. Here White introduced the new move 14.Qb1 instead of Movsesian's 14.Qd2, but Black should be fine if he plays 16... or 17...Bg4. Instead, I started to err (16...f6?, 17...Kg7?), but it seems that the position remained defendable. White was the last to err in mutual time trouble and so I managed to win. However, the opening line with the exchange sacrifice is very interesting and requires more practical tests.

Vienna Game with 2...Nf6 3.f4 d5 [C29]

The last game in my August update is Yam, A - Mikhalevski, V Calgary International 2015.

I prepared for the game and followed Kramnik's play in his game against Andreikin from the blitz game played in Moscow 2010, with 5...Bc5! Alex deviated with 8.a3 instead of 8.Nxe4, but was still worse and I won the game without visible problems. It seems that the line which occurred in the game at least solves Black's opening problems and so the ball is in White's court.


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.