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Hi everyone,
It's a great pleasure to be back working with Tony and the Chess Publishing team once again and without further ado, it's time for a new update.

Download PGN of May '08 Anti-Sicilian games

2 a3 Sicilian [B20]

In Games One and Two we look at the merits of 2 a3. I am not convinced by the this move despite White's surprising victory in our first encounter. Does White really have enough compensation after 5 Bb2 ?

I think I show why not!

Game Two features the Palliser recommendation of 2...g6!:

This is a simple enough way to get a decent game.

c3 Sicilian [B22]

In Game Three we examine 6 Na3 in the 2 c3 variation:

Again, simple moves will do and Dzagnidze shows the way for Black.

Mestel's 10...Qb6!? is punished by Howell in Game Four after the new move 11 exd6, but 14...Ne7 is the counter- improvement, when Black stands perfectly well:

Closed Sicilian [B23]

In Game Five Adly treats the Closed Sicilian almost with contempt after 2..a6!? and 3...b5!:

another line discussed by Palliser in his recent Anti-Sicilian's book.

An early ..a6 and ...b5 is again successful for Black in Game Six, a misfit in ECO terms, as for some reason ChessBase classifies it under B40.

I like this way for Black but only if you are willing to play Open Najdorf's, Kan's or other lines where ..a6 features early.

Bb5 Variations/Grand Prix Attack [B23]

Game Seven shows all the good things about 2 Nc3 and 3 Bb5, and makes mention of Gawain Jones' excellent new book on the Grand Prix Attack.

O'Kelly Variation [B28]

Finally Game Eight, is more reminiscent of the Open Sicilian as Irina Krush essays the O'Kelly Variation. The computers show good for White after 10 Ned5:

, but I am not convinced.

Altogether an interesting potpourri of Anti-Sicilian games.

Have a great month! Andrew

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