ForumHelpSearchMy ProfileSite InfoGuests InfoRepertoireLinks
This month consist of a variety of lines and new ideas. The QGD and the Catalan are currently at the top of the list, the recent World Championship match is further proof of that.

Download PGN of December ’18 1 d4 d5 2 c4 games

>> Previous Update >>

Blackburne QGD 5.Bf4 0-0 6.e3 c5, 10.Nd2 [D37]

In Game 7 of the Carlsen, M - Caruana, F Match, after the initial moves, White went for 5...0-0 6.e3 c5 7.dxc5 Bxc5 8.Qc2 Nc6 9.a3 Qa5 10.Nd2:

After failing to find something good in game two of the Match, here he opted for this rather solid approach. Now Caruana came up with the odd-looking, but obviously deeply analyzed, engine move 10...Qd8!? Carlsen failed to find a clear path to any advantage, but there are still some questions to answer here.

Blackburne QGD 5.Bf4 0-0 6.e3 b6 [D37]

Mamedyarov, S - Nakamura, Hi from the Kolkata Rapid event went 5...0-0 6.e3 b6:

Nakamura has already played this line and this game went OK for Black all the way. White has to show some much stronger ways if an advantage is what he is looking for.

Blackburne QGD 5.Bf4 0-0 6.a3 [D37]

Game 3 is Vitiugov, N - Yu Yangyi, Shenzhen Cup, and after 5...0-0 6.a3 Black played the rare 6...Nbd7 and after 7.Nb5 Ne8 8.e3 Ndf6!?:

Leading to a fighting game full of tactics. Of course, some other options were possible too.

4...Nbd7 Hybrid Exchange QGD [D35]

In Parligras, M - Nisipeanu, LD Kings Tournament, White decided to go for 5.cxd5 (Instead 5.Bf4 dxc4 is another story, an important one as well.) and the game continued 5...exd5 6.Bg5 c6 7.e3 h6 8.Bh4 g5 9.Bg3 Nh5:

White wants an Exchange line, but instead we entered a very interesting position that ended up nicely for Black.

Ragozin System 5.Qa4+ [D38]

Gajevski, G - Bluebaum, M Bundesliga went 5.Qa4+ Nc6 6.e3 0-0 7.Qc2 dxc4 8.Bxc4 Bd6 9.0-0 e5 10.h3:

As far as the opening is concerned we can say that Black never managed to equalize, it is only at a later stage that he managed to get good chances.

Vienna Variation old main line, 7 e5 cxd4 8 Qa4 [D39]

The opening of Ivanchuk, V - Palac, M Tournament of Peace, started 5.Bg5 dxc4 6.e4 c5 7.Qa4+ Nc6 8. 0-0-0 Bd7 9.Ne4 Be7 10.exf6 gxf6 11.Bh4:

I havn’t see this specific line for a while, perhaps it's interesting to revisit it again!? As for the game itself, Black missed a much stronger continuation than in the game and immediately lost.

Catalan Opening Mainline 4...Be7, 7.Qc2 a6 8.a4 [E05]

The ever-popular Catalan is the subject of the final two games.

Wojtaszek, R - Giri, A Shenzhen, went 4...Be7 5.Bg2 0-0 6. 0-0 dxc4 7.Qc2 a6 8.a4 Bd7 9.Qxc4 Bc6 10.Bg5 Nbd7:

Black played well, and faced no problems whatsoever.

Catalan Opening Mainline 4...Be7, 7.Ne5 [E05]

Cheparinov, I - Bacrot, E Tournament of Peace, was the same as Wojtaszek- Giri above up till the move 7.Qc2 and here Bacrot went for the trendy 7...b6, and there followed the greedy but critical 8.Ne5 Qxd4 9.Bxa8 Qxe5 10.Bf3:

A sharp line, but Black was up to the task and showed his compensation was sufficient.

Until next month, best wishes Milos.

>> Previous Update >>

If you have any questions, then please post a message at the 1 d4 d5 Forum, or subscribers can email