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[June 26, 2016] Updated Opening Article by GM Aleksandar Kovačević:
July 2015 Revisited: Sicilian Najdorf, English Attack

In the original article our game of the week was a memorable one: D. Navara – R. Wojtaszek, Biel 2015, where white king’s extraordinary march all the way to h8 brought him a spectacular win. We have now updated the survey with several theoretically important over-the-board and correspondence games, but the most important addition the discovery that Navara’s incredible plan was actually flawed!

[Diagram: Black to Move] The diagrammed position shows the critical moment in the above mentioned game: white king is dangerously close to the enemy camp, so Black has to find a way to cut off his opponent’s pieces, to make sure they cannot come to the rescue of their monarch.

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[June 19, 2016] Updated Opening Article by GM Slaviša Brenjo:
March 2015 Revisited: Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense with 4. d3 Bc5 5. c3

In the original article our game of the week was P. Svidler – M. Ragger, Baden-Baden 2015, where White scored a rare top-level win in one of the main lines of the Berlin Defense. We have now updated the survey with several theoretically important over-the-board, correspondence and engine games, and the most important addition is on move 14, where a new interesting try 14. Qd1!? was seen in two elite level games: F. Caruana – A. Giri, Moscow 2016 and M. Vachier-Lagrave – V. Anand, Leuven (rapid) 2016.

[Diagram: Black to Move] The diagrammed position comes from a game between two recent versions of Stockfish. Black has to do something about his opponent’s pressure on the kingside, and prevent f4-f5, before it becomes too late.

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[June 12, 2016] Updated Opening Article by GM Aleksandar Kovačević:
July 2015 Revisited: Sicilian Defense, Najdorf Variation with 6. h3 e5

In the original article our game of the week was F. Caruana – W. So, Dortmund 2015, where Black managed to create excellent counterplay. We have now updated the survey with several theoretically important over-the-board, correspondence and engine games, and it seems that this variation remains a reliable choice for the players of Black, as they generally don’t seem to have many problems equalizing in this line.

[Diagram: Black to Move] The diagrammed position comes from an analysis from the game P. Karthikeyan – P. Darini, Al Ain 2015. Black has to do something about his opponent’s pressure on the queenside, and save his hanging pieces before it becomes too late.

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[June 05, 2016] Updated Opening Article by GM Boris Avrukh:
February 2015 Revisited: Queen’s Indian Defense, Nimzowitsch Variation with 7. d5

In the original article our game of the week was H. Nakamura – P. Harikrishna, Caleta 2015, where Black managed to equalize comfortably. We have now updated the survey with several theoretically important over-the-board and engine games, and it seems that this line has become a reliable resource for the Indian super-GM, as he also had no problems in his recent game from the Gashimov Memorial: T. Radjabov – P. Harikrishna, Shamkir 2016.

[Diagram: Black to Move] R. Wojtaszek – P. Lékó, Reykjavík 2015. Black has to do something about his opponent’s pressure on the d5-pawn, before it becomes too late – a great example of Lékó’s deep opening preparation.

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[May 29, 2016] Updated Opening Article by GM Boris Avrukh:
August 2015 Revisited: English Opening, Four Knights Variation with 4… Bb4 (12… d6)

In the original article our game of the week was D. Khismatullin – E. Tomashevsky, Chita 2015, featuring an important theoretical novelty. We have now updated the survey with several theoretically important correspondence and engine games, and there is also a highly relevant top-level game from the Chess World Cup 2015 with important improvements for both sides: J. Granda Zúñiga – A. Fier, Baku (m/2) 2015.

[Diagram: White to Move] Black wants to get rid of his opponent’s knight on f5, but perhaps White wants to sacrifice it himself 😉

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[May 22, 2016] Updated Opening Article by GM Boris Avrukh:
May 2015 Revisited: Sicilian Defense, Najdorf Variation – Verbeterde List

In the original article our featured games were D. Frolyanov – L. Dominguez Perez, Sochi 2015 and M. Cornette – P. Idani, Reykjavik 2015. We have now updated the survey with several theoretically important correspondence games, and it seems that the verdict remains the same: Black usually gets rich piece play after the pawn sacrifice, but he can hardly reach complete equality if White plays all the accurate moves.

[Diagram: White to Move] 15. Nd5 looks very much like one of those Sicilian-killers, but can you see what comes next?

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