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Hi everyone,
A slightly different update for me this month in that I engaged in an annotation exchange with fellow Grandmaster and ChessPublishing site host John Emms. I annotated a Nimzo-Indian game of mine for the Nimzo/Benoni site and he annotated a game of his against the Dragon for this site. However, before we move on to that and other 'normal' Dragon games, I kick off with a couple of Accelerated Dragon encounters:

Download PGN of April '14 Dragon Sicilian games

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Accelerated Dragon Maroczy Bind 5...Nf6 6 Nc3 Nxd4 [B36]

Of course 1.c4 c5 2.Nf3 g6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.e4 had started out as a Symmetrical English but was now a familiar position and in Xiu Deshun-Hou Yifan we got to see another outing in 5...Nf6 6.Nc3 Nxd4 7.Qxd4 d6 8.f3 Bg7 9.Be3 0-0 10.Qd2 a5 with Black seeking to park his pawn on a4 before sliding his queen out to a5. Well that was not to be here because White chose to block it with 11.Na4:

However, just when you thought that we might be in for a position battle revolving around squares like b6, the game continued 11...Nd7 12.Rd1 b6 13.Bh6 Nc5 14.Nc3 Be6 15.h4 and we were in for some fun on the kingside. Add to that some complications in the centre and pretty much the whole board was accounted for!

Accelerated Dragon Maroczy Bind 5...Bg7 with 8...b6 [B38]

The opening in Adhiban - Akshat,Kh brought back memories for me although I now notice that after 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 g6 5.c4 Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Nc3 0-0 8.Be2, there has in fact been a steady flow of 8...b6 games where I thought that it had fallen out of fashion. Following 9.0-0 Bb7:

everyone should be familiar with the trap 10 Qd2? Nxd4 11 Bxd4 e5! and I quite like the game continuation of 10.Ndb5!? as it keeps the pieces on in accordance with having a space advantage. It's clear that there are several opportunities for Black to set up a 'Hedgehog' formation but that doesn't happen here, with Black getting his pieces in a bit of a muddle and White arranging a swift and devastating assault on the black king position.

Dragon 6 Bc4 [B70]

With reference to my earlier comments, the game Emms - Green was annotated by John himself and regards 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Bc4 Bg7, it was nice to get a White player's perspective on the 'Modern Classical' variation. The game itself was a London league encounter, so wouldn't be found anywhere else. Although 7.0-0 0-0 8.Re1 Nc6 9.h3:

9...Nxd4 10.Qxd4 Bd7 11.Qd3 Bc6 12.Bg5 a6 13.Bb3 Qc7 14.Nd5 Bxd5 15.exd5 h6 16.Be3 Nd7 17.c3 b5 18.Qd2 Kh7 19.Bd4 Ne5 20.Re2 Nc4 21.Bxc4 bxc4 22.Bxg7 Kxg7 23.Rae1 might not prove to be too theoretically important, it is interesting to hear the thoughts of the 1st player, seemingly grinding out a victory. Not for everyone perhaps, but you won't find John complaining as his results with this system are excellent.

Classical Dragon with 8 Qd2 0-0 9 0-0-0 [B72]

We have spent quite a bit of time on this site looking at the aggressive Classical system 6.Be3 Bg7 7.Be2 Nc6 8.Qd2 0-0 9.0-0-0, in particular investigating the pawn offering 9...Nxd4 10 Bxd4 Be6 11 g4!? and the sharp 9...Ng4!? that bags a handy bishop for a potentially important defensive knight. We have also looked at 9...Bd7 before but 10.Kb1 appears here for the first time in the game Paehtz, E - Gustafsson, J. This actually continues with 10...Rc8 11.h4 h5 12.f3 Ne5 when as illustrated below there is now a definite Yugoslav Attack feel about the position:

Indeed very 'Soltis' like, but with White's light-squared bishop on e2 rather than b3, in theory Black should be fine. Judge for yourself!

Yugoslav Attack 9 g4 Be6 10 Nxe6 [B76]

As far as the variation 6.Be3 Bg7 7.f3 0-0 8.Qd2 Nc6 9.g4 Be6 10.Nxe6 goes, I think that Derakhshani - Jones is really about as close to a model game for Black as you can get. Following 10...fxe6 11.0-0-0 Ne5 12.Be2 Qa5 13.Kb1 Rac8 14.Nb5 Qxd2 15.Rxd2 a6 16.Nd4 Kf7, White made the concession 17.b3?! and after the natural 17...Rc3! things went downhill quickly both positionally and tactically:

Though he probably won't thank me for it(!) I do like to keep tab of Gawain's Dragon games and hopefully we'll have him contributing to ChessPublishing again sometime in the future.

Yugoslav Attack 9 Bc4 ...Rc8 with ...Nxd4 [B78]

The game Vujacic,Bo- Ristic,Nen certainly has its inaccuracies, but is very entertaining. The familiar to ChessPublishing opening was 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.0-0-0 Rc8 11.Bb3 Nxd4 12.Bxd4 b5 when White opted for 13.Bxa7 in order to prevent that black a-pawn from becoming a menace:

Play continued 13...b4 14.Nd5 Nxd5 15.exd5 Qa5 16.Qe3 Ba4 17.Bd4 Bxd4 18.Rxd4 Rc5 when the big debate is around just how much play in that major piece middlegame Black gets for the pawn.

That's all for now. Back real soon!

Best wishes, Chris

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To get in touch with me subscribers can email me at Chris