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Unusual Lines - London System 5.Bf4 [E61]
I always notice the King's Indian games played by our own Gawain Jones as he is always on top of current theory. He also seems to favour the lines that I like! In Hamitevici - Jones we look at a line which has also been covered via a London System move order in the d-pawn specials section. If White plays an early c2-c4 however it transposes to an obscure KID, which is why I cover it here, 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.Nf3 0-0 5.Bf4 d6 6.e3 Nbd7 7.h3:
7...b6! I like this system very much and recommended it in Attacking Chess: The King's Indian Volume 2. Black uses his pieces to fight for the centre. Jones wins with remarkable ease by tactically overpowering his opponent.
Fianchetto Variation - Panno 8.Bf4 [E63]
In the Panno Variation, 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nf3 Bg7 4.g3 0-0 5.Bg2 d6 6.0-0 Nc6 7.Nc3 a6, the move 8.Bf4 is not common but it is kind of trendy:
White simply develops and plays chess. In Vachier Lagrave - Kokarev Black plays in an original manner and outplays his 2700+ opponent with surprising ease after 8...Bg4.
Yugoslav Exchange 9.Bf4 [E65]
Morozevich goes for a rare line in the Yugoslav exchange line, which looks perfectly viable.
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nf3 Bg7 4.g3 0-0 5.Bg2 c5 6.0-0 d6 7.Nc3 Nc6 8.dxc5 dxc5 is not too exciting, so it is all the more surprising how quickly Black gets the upper hand in Giri - Morozevich after 9.Bf4 Nd4!?:
This is not very common but it looks like a simple equalizer. Giri looks for more than sterile equality and ends up with a lot less.
Averbakh Variation [E74]
The Averbakh has been turning up a bit lately as we have seen. After 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Be2 0-0 6.Bg5 c5 7.d5 h6 8.Be3 e6 9.dxe6 is unusual:
I think Black was ok in Gelfand - Ding Liren but he eventually loses a back and forth game.
Sämisch System - 6.Be3 c5 7.dxc5 [E81]
The 6...c5 gambit is doubtlessly playable but it always looks like Black is suffering against white expert Vitiugov. After 7.dxc5 dxc5 8.Qxd8 Rxd8 9.Bxc5 Nc6 10.Nge2 b6 11.Ba3 Bb7 12.Nd5!? is a rare move:
Classical - 7...Bg4 [E91]
I have not looked at the early ...Bg4 line in the Classical yet, I think White is better but it is not a bad surprise weapon. After 8.Be3 Nfd7 9.Rc1 c5 10.d5 Bxf3 11.Bxf3 b5 Ragger - Fauland saw White play 12.Be2, which looks better than 12.b3.
The game Kasimdzhanov - Topalov features a real bombshell, 7.0-0 exd4 8.Nxd4 Re8 9.f3 c6 10.Kh1 Nh5 11.g4 Nf6 12.Bf4 h5 13.Nf5!!:
Black may survive but I do not think this move will be refuted. If an engine is willing to sac a piece for a pawn it must be sound! 13.g5 is (was!) the normal move. Topalov managed to hold ,and I imagine Kasimdzhanov regretted such a wasted opportunity
9.Ne1 Main line [E99]
In Xu Yinglun - Wen Yang we revisit a critical line in the Mar del Plata that saw a lot of action a couple of years ago, 7.0-0 Nc6 8.d5 Ne7 9.Ne1 Nd7 10.Nd3 f5 11.Bd2 Nf6 12.f3 f4 13.c5 g5 14.Rc1 Ng6 15.Nb5 Rf7 16.Ba5 b6 17.cxd6 cxd6 18.Bb4!?, which takes quick aim at the d6-pawn. The alternative 18.Be1 has been played more often.
Until next month, David
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