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Hello everyone,
Since my April update was slightly delayed I decided to compensate this by an early May update. As usual you'll see a lot of top level chess here and some really important novelties.

Download PGN of May '13 1 e4 e5 games

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Spanish - Zaitsev Variation 12.d5 [C92]

In the game Caruana, F - Morozevich, A Renova FIDE GP Zug 2013, the players went for a long theoretical line.

Here White introduced a novelty, 26.g5. Despite some slight inaccuracies, this was a well-played game by both players. The long opening line which occurred in this game leads to positions which are a tiny bit better for White. So it requires some precise play from Black, which was demonstrated by Morozevich.

The Open Variation 10.Nbd2 [C83]

In a rare appearance for the Open variation at the top level White played a very unusual line in a well-known position in the game Leko, P - Kamsky, G Renova FIDE GP Zug 2013.

In the diagram position, which has already featured in over 150 games, Leko played 15.Ne2 instead of the common 15.Nxe6 and, thanks to Black's inaccurate reaction, obtained the better chances. The rare 15.Ne2 is an interesting resource which Black shouldn't underestimate and, at least in the current game, White obtained a clear advantage. I could have recommended 16...Qc6 as a possible way to improve upon Black's play in the current game.

The Archangel Variation 9.Be3 [C78]

In the game Ponomariov, R - Giri, A Renova FIDE GP Zug 2013, Black repeated a brand new idea of Caruana, which was introduced two days earlier in the same tournament.

In the diagram position he played 10...Re8 instead of more common moves, such as 10...h6 and 10...Bb7, and equalized without big problems. Pretty solid play from both players led to a draw. The opening setup with the bishop on e3 doesn't seem to promise much, and 10...Re8 is one of several playable ways to treat the position.

5.d3 with Black's ...b5 and ...Bc5 [C78]

The game Anand, V - Aronian, L Alekhine memorial 2013, saw the players transpose to 5.d3 from the 4.d3 Berlin system.

Soon they reached the diagram position given above, which I also covered in my recent book on an opening repertoire for Black against the Spanish. Here Vishy introduced the novelty 15.dxe5, and a quiet positional game ensued, in which this novelty was easily neutralized.

Berlin Defence 4.d3 Bc5 5.Bxc6 [C65]

As promised in the previous update I have included the game Caruana, F - Karjakin, S Renova FIDE GP Zug 2013, in the current one.

Caruana was the first to deviate from Anand's play in his game against Kramnik despite the World Champion's win. So, in the diagram position he played 11.g3, instead of 11.Be3, but this move doesn't seem to set Black serious problems, while the weakening of the light squares may backfire.

Schliemann/Jaenisch with 9.Nc3 [C63]

In the game Caruana, F - Radjabov, T Renova FIDE GP Zug 2013, White introduced a strong novelty in the following position:

Here he played 10.Na4, instead of the common 10.Nd3, and obtained a slight, but long-term advantage. A well-played game by Fabiano Caruano, which proved that the line which occurred in the game leads to a slightly unpleasant position for Black - with White playing for just two results!

Scotch with 4...Bc5 5.Nb3 [C45]

The game Anand, V - Fressinet, L Alekhine memorial 2013, saw a system of the Scotch with 5.Nb3 which is rather popular these days.

Here the Frenchman introduced an interesting early novelty, 8...d5, and obtained a position with mutual chances. A very interesting fighting game - Black's opening idea deserves further practical tests.

Scotch with 4...Nf6 [C45]

In the game Karjakin, S - Kasimdzhanov, R Renova FIDE GP Zug 2013, an important theoretical discussion led to the diagram position given below:

Curiously, Karjakin had already played this position with the black pieces in a blitz game against Carlsen. While analysing that game for I proposed the improvement 17...Qe4+, which was demonstrated in the current game. Black was well-prepared, sacrificed an exchange and forced a roughly equal endgame. A well-played game by both players, which also has theoretical value - the ball remains in White's court.


See you next month, Victor.

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