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Hello everybody! I've been playing a lot of chess this summer and am sending this update from the Chess Olympiad in Istanbul, where my captain has given me a well-deserved rest against Sierra Leone.

Download PGN of August '12 Anti-Sicilian games

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c3-Sicilian 2...Nf6 [B22]

Tiviakov - Bologan was always going to be a key encounter for the theory of this line. Bologan uses an ambitious and logical approach with an early ...c4:

after which neither Tiviakov nor other leading c3-Sicilian experts have been able to demonstrate anything for White.

c3-Sicilian 2...d5 [B22]

Petenyi - Idani is part of our continued coverage of the 2...d5 3.exd5 Qxd5 4.d4 Nc6 5.Nf3 Bf5!? line which has been scoring overwhelmingly in recent months. Petenyi introduces a good improvement on Krush - Short by playing, after 6.Be3 Nf6, the logical 7.Be2!:

White continues development while creating an incidental threat of taking on c5.

Closed Sicilian 6 Nge2 [B25]

Jobava and Wotjaszek, in their recent match in Poznan, played an effective mini-match in the Closed Sicilian with Nge2. Game 1 featured a setup with ...Nf6:

while Game 3 showcased the more flexible Fischer setup with ...e6 and ...Nge7.

Hybrid Variation (2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 d6) [B51]

Several key games in this line this month.

Giri - Reinderman shows White's approach based on delaying castling in the 4.Bxc6+ line, but a very accurate response from Reinderman seems to equalise.

Meanwhile, in the 4.0-0 Bd7 5.Re1 Nf6 line, Ponomariov - Caruana is a classic struggle in the traditional mainline of 6.c3 a6 7.Bf1 Bg4:

while Bologan used his pet 6.h3 line against Carlsen in Game 7.

See you next time, Sam

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Please post you queries on the Anti-Sicilians Forum, or subscribers can write to me at if you have any questions or queries.