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This month we look at several games in the Sämisch, and also some unusual Black lines in the Classical.

Download PGN of March '13 KID games

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Fianchetto System - Classical 8.e4 exd4 [E68]

The game Jianu - Cheparinov is a big upset and is another example of why Black has to be very careful in these older ...exd4 lines in the Fianchetto Variation. Black's position can become very passive. 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 0-0 5.Nf3 d6 6.0-0 Nbd7 7.Nc3 e5 8.e4 exd4 9.Nxd4 Re8 10.h3 Nc5 11.Re1 Bd7 12.Kh2 h6:

However, I do not think that 13.f4 is critical here.

Sämisch System - Panno Mainline [E84]

After 6.Be3 Nc6 7.Nge2 a6 8.Qd2 the move 8...Re8!? is a bit of a sideline:

However, 9.g4 is as risky for White as it is for Black and after 9...Rb8 10.h4 h5! Black wins a crushing miniature, despite a significant rating disadvantage. See Svetushkin - Matinian.

In the game Postny - Sale we see White come to the board with a new idea that is quite annoying. Black was unable to solve his problems over the board after 6.Be3 Nc6 7.Nge2 a6 8.Qd2 Rb8 9.Rc1 Bd7 10.Nd1 e6 11.g3 Re8 12.Bg2 b5 13.c5 dxc5 14.Rxc5 Bf8 15.Rc1 Bb4 16.Ndc3 e5 17.0-0!? Instead of pushing, White allows the exchange on d4.

6...e5 7.d5 without 7...c6 [E87]

The classical line 6...e5 is experiencing a bit of a revival after taking a backseat to the "theoretical equalizer" 6...c5 as well as the modern preference, the Panno. After 7.d5 Nh5 8.Qd2 f5 9.0-0-0 Nd7 10.Bd3 Nc5 11.Bc2 the idea 11...a6 was brought back into the limelight by Cheparinov, although Kasparov had played it before too:

After the further 12.Kb1 b5 13.b4 Nd7 14.c5 a5 15.c6 Ndf6 16.a3 I once speculated Black may look to avoid this position, but Postny - Tkachiev shows that it is White who should avoid it. The Israeli Sämisch specialist finds himself in trouble very quickly.

6...e5, old mainline with early Nge2 [E89]

Aghasaryan - Popovic is another 6...e5 game, although via a different move order, 6.Nge2!? has its points, but so does the reply 6...c6!? Black looks to get a favourable ...e5 structure. Following 7.Be3 e5 8.d5 cxd5 9.cxd5 a6 10.Qd2 Nbd7 White's knight is in the way on e2, so plans with 0-0 are less appealing, but 11.0-0-0?! is a natural move and also an instructive mistake.

Classical - Gligoric 7...Qe8!? [E92]

In Shulman - Ding Liren a 2700 player tried a very rare line as early as move seven! 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Nf3 0-0 6.Be2 e5 7.Be3 Qe8!?:

This is the 11th most popular move! It seems playable enough though.

7...Nc6 8.Be3 [E97]

Although Fridman - Naiditsch is sure to become a classic, I do not really trust Black's opening scheme with 7.0-0 Nc6 8.Be3 Ng4 9.Bg5 f6 10.Bh4 g5 11.Bg3 Nh6 12.dxe5 fxe5 This is enterprising, but the solid 12...dxe5 scores better overall.

Mar Del Plata 9.Ne1, 13...Rf6!? [E99]

In Reinderman - Zhou we look at Black's caveman approach with 7.0-0 Nc6 8.d5 Ne7 9.Ne1 Nd7 10.Be3 f5 11.f3 f4 12.Bf2 g5 13.Rc1 Rf6 intending ...Qe8-h5:

I think this idea can only work in extreme cases, and both in this game and those quoted in the notes, we can conclude that Black's concept looks unsound.

Until next month, David

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Don't hesitate to share your thoughts and suggestions with me. Any queries or comments to the KID Forum, or to me directly at (subscribers only) would be most welcome.