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Hi everyone,
This update completes my FIDE Grand Swiss coverage.

Download PGN of November ’19 Anti-Sicilian games

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2.Nf3 e6 3.g3 d5 4.exd5 exd5 [B40]

In Aronian, L - Dreev, A, 1.e4’s most recent elite convert tried the unusual 5.Bg2 (in place of the standard 5.d4). Dreev repeated his previous game with 5...Qe7+ 6.Kf1 Nc6 7.d4:

and now varied with 7...Qd8. Dreev came close to creating a masterpiece, sacrificing a piece (which appeared to be completely sound), but got carried away (likely in time trouble, although it was early in the game) and missed a winning tactical shot by Aronian.

Moscow Variation 3...Nd7 4.d4 cxd4 5.Qxd4 a6 6.Bxd7+ Bxd7 7.Nc3 [B51]

The Isle of Man featured several instructive games in this line:

So, W - Ganguly, S was a positional battle where Ganguly erred by allowing the c3-knight to land on b6 with tempo.

The endgames which can arise in this line (and from the Najdorf) often look more pleasant for White, but Black has strong dynamic resources. The games Grandelius, N - Narayanan, S and Jones, G - Clarke, B instructively demonstrate many of these ideas, in particular the ...d5 pawn sacrifice.

Moscow Variation 3...Nd7 4.c3 Nf6 [B51]

White has two main ways to protect e4.

In Lupulescu, C - Wojtaszek, R 5.Bd3 was selected, with Black choosing 5...g6 6.0-0 Bg7 7.Bc2 e5!?:

As often occurs, Spanish style play arose.

In Mamedov, R - Wang, H White chose the alternative defence with 5.Qe2. After 5...a6 6.Ba4 b5 7.Bc2 e5!?:

After Wang Hao delayed developing his c8-bishop, a decision which worked well in the game after Mamedov closed the centre with d5 (the bishop is misplaced on b7 in such a structure). White’s position remained acceptable until Mamedov lashed out for an attack which fell short.

Moscow Variation 3...Bd7 4.Bxd7+ Nxd7 5.0-0 Ngf6 6.Qe2 e6 7.d4 [B52]

McShane, L - Adhiban, B featured a Maroczy Bind setup after 4...Nxd7 5.0-0 Ngf6 6.Qe2 e6 7.d4 cxd4 8.Nxd4 a6 9.c4 Rc8 10.b3 g6:

Black’s slightly passive position did not seem to suit Adhiban’s exciting style, and he made some inaccuracies allowing McShane to seize the initiative.

Moscow Variation 3...Bd7 4.Bxd7+ Qxd7 5.c4 e5 [B52]

Kovalev, V - Carlsen, M is well known by this point, where the World Champion almost stumbled on the cusp of his 100+ game unbeaten streak. After 4...Qxd7 5.c4 e5:

Kovalev played the best move order with 6.Nc3 Nc6 7.d3 Be7 8.a3 Bd8 9.0-0 Nge7 10.b4!. Varying from a previous game against Bacrot, Carlsen declined the pawn and reached an acceptable position before allowing Kovalev a winning chance.

Till next time, Sam

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