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This month we look at some very sharp lines. One is borderline losing for Black, but that could also mean that is just a draw! It is clear that Black went in for it intentionally after all...

Download PGN of February ’19 KID games

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Fianchetto Variation 6...Nc6 7.Nc3 e5 8.dxe5 [E62]

After 9.Bg5 Be6 10.Qa4 is easily the most common move, but Avrukh's suggested 10.Qc1 is popular now as well. 10...Qc8:

This line is a regular on these pages. White has some choice here. I had considered 11.Bxf6 to be one of the more dangerous options, but maybe Black is just fine. After 11...Bxf6 12.Nd5 is direct, but perhaps less dangerous than the alternatives. See Koneru, H - Howell, D.

Sämisch System - 6...c5 7.Nge2 Nc6 8.d5 Ne5 9.Ng3 h5 [E81]

We have two games this month with 10.Be2 h4 11.Nf1 e6.

The sharpest line is 12.f4 Nxc4 13.Bxc4 b5 14.Bxb5 exd5 15.e5:

The jury has been out on whether Black should exchange on e5 first. Probably he should! In Iniyan, P - Lombaers, P Black played 15...Bg4 16.exf6 Bxd1 17.fxg7 Kxg7 18.Rxd1 d4 19.Rxd4! I have pointed out that this has scored very well for White. Matters are not so clear actually, but as practice indicates, it is easier for White to play. We will check up on 15...dxe5 as well.

For a few years 12.Bg5 has been the most topical:

A common inaccuracy is 12...h3?! 13.Ne3! and now in Leenhouts, K - Moussard, J Black mixed up his lines with 13...exd5 when 14.Nexd5! already had Black on the brink of defeat.

Makagonov 6.h3 e5 7.d5 a5 8.Be3 Na6 [E90]

A couple of years ago Gawain Jones faced the line with 9.g4 Nc5 10.Nd2 a4 11.Be2 c6 12.g5 Nfd7 13.h4:

Now he went in a different direction with 13...f5!? Instead 13...Qa5 scores well for Black, but that does not mean that it is best. Gawain comes prepared with an improvement in Vaibhav S. - Jones, G but unfortunately White eventually got the best of things.

Classical Exchange Variation 7.dxe5 dxe5 8.Qxd8 Rxd8 9.Bg5 [E92]

So, W - Nyzhnyk, I serves as a bit of a warning. It is very surprising that someone as well prepared as Nyzhnyk got caught in the line with 9.Bg5 Na6?! as this just does not work!

Classical 7...exd4 8.Nxd4 Re8 9.f3 c6 10.Kh1 Nh5 [E94]

7.0-0 exd4 8.Nxd4 Re8 9.f3 c6 10.Kh1 Nh5 is a risky line. It seems Kovalev has everything worked out in great detail, though. 11.g4 Nf6 12.Bf4 h5 13.Nf5 gxf5 14.gxf5 d5 15.cxd5 cxd5:

Previously he had held the miserable 16.Rg1 dxe4 which is all very forcing, but he was willing to repeat it against an opponent who had time to prepare. In Korobov, A - Kovalev, Vl White chose 16.e5!? but after 16...Bxf5 17.exf6 Qxf6 18.Nxd5 Qxb2 19.Ne7+ Rxe7 20.Qd8+ 21.Rg1+ Bg4! we had already seen on our site that Black is fine here.

Classical 8.Be3 Ng4 9.Bg5 f6 10.Bh4 [E97]

After 9.Bg5 f6 White can retreat to e3 or play 10.Bh4 and now 10...Nh6!? is unusual, but seems just fine. See Gunina, V - Cheparinov, I.

Classical Bayonet Attack 9...a5 10.bxa5 Rxa5 11.a4 Nh5 [E97]

After 10.bxa5 Rxa5 11.a4 Nh5!? is an interesting mix:

11...c5 is more common. 12.Re1 f5 and now White played 13.Ng5 in Werle, J - Jones, G which seeks to punish Black, but maybe it is not the best.

Until next month, David

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