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It was a month full of important tournaments, from the World Cup to Poikovsky and even some national championships! In all of them there were some new ideas (not always good ones), and in all of them some Flank Openings!

Download PGN of September '13 Flank Openings games

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Gurevich's System 3 e3 Bg4 [A11]

Two of the best Argentinean players go for a thematic duel in a rare and interesting line, 3...Bg4!?:

Despite the 3-0 score for Flores in the games, the position is far from clear, see Flores, D - Peralta, F.

Réti Opening 4...dxc4, 7...b6 8 e4 [A13]

In Cornette, M - Sokolov, A, White's 8.e4 is a rare approach in a known position, and 8...a5 was played before by Morozevich, attempting to punish White for the opening of the a6-f1 diagonal:

Still, it's a committal move and after White's pawn sacrifice Black was under pressure for the rest of the game.

Mikenas Attack 3...d5 4 cxd5 [A18]

One more time White goes for 4.cxd5 in Aronian, L - Lysyj, I, but played 6.Nf3 instead of the 6.d4 analyzed in Ding - Wey in July, probably based on another game from Lisyj. Soon something went wrong for Aronian and Lisyj could have given him big problems.

In the above diagram position I would take a look at playing 10.Nxd4 instead of 10.Nb5.

Four Knights 4 g3 Bb4, 6...Bxc3 [A29]

Against the solid 6...Bxc3 White goes for the 8.Ne1!? idea:

I like this variation and it's making a lot of points lately. In Dubov, D - Fedorchuk, S White created a strong attack on the kingside and won without any problems.

Double-Fianchetto Variation 9 b3 [A30]

Eljanov, P - Karjakin, S was a tense match in the World Cup and they played 3 games in the same line with 9.b3 Nbd7 10.Bb2 0-0 11.Rfd1:

In all three games Karjakin tried a solid idea of exchanging the knight on c3 and holding the position. The plan is hard to break and I think the move order of the last game is better than the one played before.

Hedgehog 7 Re1 [A30]

Aroshidze tries to innovate with 13...h5?! in a position which I consider dangerous for Black. After an 'automatic' answer from White, Black got an improved version of normal lines. Instead, after 14.f5, I'm not convinced that Black had anything prepared:

see Szabo, B - Aroshidze, L.

Symmetrical Four Knights 6 a3 [A33]

6.a3 has been a good weapon the last few years and there is still room for improvements for both sides:

In Banusz, T - Georgescu, T White's 13.Qe1 is a good new move (however, first played in correspondence as usual) and Black soon got into trouble. I would take a look at 13...Na5.

Pure Symmetrical with early ...d5 [A38]

The Poikovsky Tournament is always a source of good games and this one was a surprise as I discovered that it had all been played before until move 20! Black is holding well so 13...b6 can probably be repeated in strong tournaments:

See Jakovenko, D - Cheparinov, I.

Till next time, Alex.

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