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Hi everyone,
Some great games this month, especially the attacking masterpieces by Sutovksy and Mamedov.

Download PGN of November ’17 Anti-Sicilian games

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c3-Sicilian: 2...Nf6 3.e5 Nd5 4.Nf3 e6 5.d4 cxd4 6.cxd4 d6 7.Bc4 Be7 8.0-0 0-0 [B22]

Nisipeanu, L - Grischuk, A features the drawish line 9.Qe2 Nc6 10.Rd1 Na5 11.Bxd5 exd5:

Both players showed good understanding of the basic ideas in the arising symmetrical structure, and the game ended in a draw.

Rossolimo: 3...g6 4.Bxc6 bxc6 5.0-0 Bg7 6.Re1 Nh6 7.c3 0-0 8.h3 [B31]

Instead of the topical 8...f5, Black can play the solid but passive 8...f6 aiming to slowly develop and exploit his bishop pair:

Jakovenko, D - Barnaure, V is a good example of the downsides of this strategy.

Rossolimo: 3...g6 4.0-0 Bg7 5.Re1 Nf6 6.e5 Nd5 7.Nc3 Nc7 8.Bxc6 dxc6 9.Ne4 b6 10.Nf6+ Kf8 11.Ne4 [B31]

After 11...Bg4 12.d3, in Mamedov, R - Dubov, D Black essayed the critical 12...Bxe5. After the well known temporary queen sacrifice 13.Nxe5! Bxd1 14.Bh6+ Kg8 15.Nxc6 Bxc2, Mamedov unleashed the stunning novelty 16.Nxc5!!:

Playing first a piece and then a whole rook down, he won a marvellous game.

Moscow hybrid: 3.Bb5+ Nc6 4.0-0 Bd7 [B51]

This month we look at aggressive options for both colours.

In Xu, Y - Williams, S the English GM played his trademark system with 5.Re1 Nf6 6.c3 a6 7.Bf1 e5 8.h3 g5!?:

He got a wonderful position but faltered when facing good defence, and lost.

Sutovsky, E - Piorun, K shows a rare idea after the sacrifice with 5.c3!? Nf6 6.d4 Nxe4 7.d5 Ne5, namely 8.Na3:

Black has a couple of decent defensive options but was crushed in the game.

Moscow: 3.Bb5+ Nd7 [B51]

Two contrasting White wins here. First, one of my own efforts in Collins, S - Bates, R when, after 4.0-0 a6 5.Bd3 Ngf6 6.Re1 e5 7.c3, Richard played the new 7...Nh5:

There’s probably a good reason why this hadn’t been played before, and in the game he quickly got into trouble.

Kamsky, G - Huschenbeth, N is another example of a positional squeeze in the 4.a4 variation. Kamsky won a smooth game but Black missed a late opportunity for counterplay.

Kopec System: 2.Nf3 d6 3.c3 Nf6 4.Bd3 Nc6 [B50]

Jobava, B - Navara, D saw White quickly getting into trouble after 5.Bc2 Bg4 6.d3 e6 7.h3 Bh5 8.Bf4:

This is about level after normal play, but Jobava’s ambitious g4 advance left him struggling to defend his dark-square weaknesses.

Till next time, Sam

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