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I I I

SICIIan
an

by John Emms

EVERYMAN CHESS
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I I I

SICIIan
an

by John Emms

EVERYMAN CHESS
Everyman Publishers pic www.everymanbooks.com
CONTENTS I

Bibliography 6
Preface 7
Introduction 9

1 e4 c5 2 l2lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 l2lxd4 a6

5 d3

1 5 d3 l2lf6 6 0-0 'f!ic7 7 'ii'e2 d6 12


2 5 d3 l2lf6 6 0-0 'flic7: Seventh move alternatives 46
3 5 d3 l2lf6 6 0-0 d6 60
4 5 d3 .tc5 82
5 5 .td3: Fifth move alternatives for Black 112

5li:lc3

6 5 l2lc3 -vJ1c7 129


7 5 ltJc3 b5 6 d3 'i'b6!? 156
8 5 l2lc3 b5: Sixth move alternatives 173

5 c4

9 5 c4 182

Index of Complete Games 191


I BIBLIOGRAPHY I

Books
Enryclopaedia of Chess Openings Volume B, 3rd Edition (Sahovski Informator 1997)
Enryclopaedia of Chess Openings Volume B, 4th Edition (Sahovski Informator 2002)
Nunn's Chess Openings, John Nunn, Graham Burgess, John Emms and Joe Gallagher (Every
man/Gambit 1999)
Siiflianisch im Geiste des !gels, Frank Zeller (Schachverlag Kania 2000)
Winning with the Kan, Ali Mortazavi (Batsford 1996)
Trends in the Paulsen VoL 2, John Emms (Trends 1997)
Beating the Sicilian 3, John Nunn and Joe Gallagher (Batsford 1995)

Periodicals
Chess Informants 1-84
The Week in Chess 1-405
Chesspublishing.com

Databases
Mega Database 2002
Mega Corr 2
PREFACE I

This book is a study of the Sicilian Kan (1 to use the Kan as my main weapon against
e4 cS 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4), an ideal 1 e4 I was struck by the number of strong
opening for those playing Black who wish and experienced white players who would
to learn the intricacies of the ever popular become flummoxed and slump into deep
Sicilian Defence. I've been looking forward thought early on. My basic theory is that the
to writing this book for a long time. The majority of those playing open Sicilians
Kan was the first Sicilian variation I learned have budgeted just enough time to study the
to play and, because of this, I've always had ins and outs of the 'trendy' Dragon, Najdorf
a soft spot for it. and Sveshnikov, leaving them a little short
I first became aware of its potential as a against the 'less fashionable' lines.
possible defence for Black in a typical fash So who plays the Kan? Going back to
ion: struggling to find an advantage against the 1970s you would find games from the
it with the white pieces! From the start I likes of Karpov, Petrosian, Portisch, Miles,
was very much struck by its flexibility and Andersson, Hubner, Ljubojevic and Gheor
simplicity. A major selling point, which ghiu. Of the new generation of top class
cannot be overstressed, is that the Kan is players, there are games by Ivanchuk, Ru
one of the easiest variations of the Sicilian blevsky, Smirin and Judit Polgar, while Kas
to learn. Unlike some more high profile parov and Kramnik have also used it
lines I could mention (the Dragon, the Na occasionally. Other players who have con
jdorf and the Sveshnikov), the onus is not tributed to its theory include Bologan, Vyz
on the player with the black pieces to manavin, Milov, Epishin, Eingorn, Kengis,
memorise reams of opening theory simply Landa, Ilya Gurevich, Miezis, Movsesian,
to stay on the board. Of course Black still Romanishin, Farago, etc. I could go on but
has to play good moves (!), but is much less there's enough quality on display there to
likely to be at a disadvantage simply down dispel any doubts about the soundness of
to a memory loss. The Kan is more of a the defence.
'system' in that Black tends to react similarly To what type of player does the Kan es
regardless of how White plays it. pecially appeal? Anyone who believes that
This brings us to another positive fea Black's sound Sicilian structure can over
ture; how does White play it? When I began come White's early initiative. For a Sicilian,

7
Sicilian K a n

there is relatively little theory and still much players study openings with the aid of com
uncharted territory. For example, a few puters and many of the major opening nov
years ago a new move was discovered for elties over the last few years have been
Black which has completely altered how a computer inspired.
particularly important line was perceived. I decided on using illustrative games in
And when does this idea occur? As early as stead of the traditional method of variation
move six! The Kan is more likely to appeal trees. In this particular instance, with both
to a player who is keen to think for himself White and Black having such a free rein
from an early stage, rather than one who is regarding move orders and with both sides
reliant on the comfort zone twenty or so employing 'systems' rather than just
moves of solid theory. To this I would add 'moves', it's easy to see that illustrative
to this that the Kan player generally plays games have a major advantage. I will, how
on the counter-attack and that patie-nce, ever, be concentrating mainly on the open
especially in certain variations, is a very use ing moves . and the early middlegame plans
ful quality. and tactics, and will only linger on the later
Despite my fondness for the Kan, I've parts of the games if they have characteristic
endeavoured to produce a balanced and 'Kan' qualities or if they are of particular
objective study of the variation. This is not interest. To provide as much useful infor
intended as an ail-in-one repertoire book mation as possible, I have forced myself to
and it's not filled with ninety-nine per cent be quite ruthless about this. Once you be
of black wins! My idea was to include both come involved in studying a particular
the popular and the less fashionable lines, game, it's all too easy to be seduced by all
recommending variations for both colours the tactics of the late middlegame and end
where it's merited. In general the results of game, even if they have nothing to do with
the games I've selected reflect the success the actual opening. Before you know it, a
rate of the lines at grandmaster level. This is game covering one small sideline turns into
not to say, however, that they produce simi a ten-page epic! I have deliberately fought
lar results at lower levels. against this; this is first and foremost a book
I've assumed that the reader doesn't have on the K.an, not a games selection.
access to other material on the Kan in such Except for a brief explanation in the in
publications as ChessBase Maga'.{jne, Infonnator troduction, I will be dealing with the various
and ChessPublishing.com and I've collected positional and tactical ideas for both players
and checked relevant analysis and assess as they occur in the games, rather than sepa
ments from these sources. I've also endeav rately. I've found that some games have
oured to attribute such analysis and assess come out as a labyrinth of difficult tactical
ments correctly, except perhaps when they variations, while others much more posi
have been blindingly obvious. Naturally I tional and wordy; that's the way it is with
have been assisted in my task of checking the Sicilian.
and providing new analysis by various com Many thanks go to Byron Jacobs and
puter engines - it would be reckless to con Dan Addelman for their patience and ex
sider writing certain chess books these days tended deadlines, and to Christine for her
without one. Computers do have some support and proof-reading.
weaknesses but they are excellent at both
checking analysis and prompting the author John Emms,
to consider unusual (or sometimes blatantly Kent,
obvious) ideas. Virtually all the world's top September 2002

8
INTRODUCTION I

Let's begin by taking a look at the initial 4 ... a6. In some ways it could be construed as
moves of the Kan. a 'high-class' waiting move, but it does have
1 e4 c5 2 tt:lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:Jxd4 a6 positive features relevant to the position.
Firstly, it protects the bS-square and thus
rules out any early lbbS by White. This is
particularly important because 2 ... e6 weak
ens the d6-square, while Black also often
plays his queen to c7 at an early stage. An
other positive feature of ... a7 -a6 is that it
can support the rypical Sicilian lunge ... b7-
b5, which Black may play as early as move
five! This strike on the queenside is nor
mally much more e ffective if White plays an
early l2:\c3, as then a timely ...b5-b4 forces
the knight to move again. This can be im
portant as often Black bases his counterplay
Black's fourth move underlines the un on attacking White's very slightly vulnerable
doubted flexibiliry of the Kan. Black waits e4-pawn and the knight on c3 is a natural
for White to commit himself before decid defender of this pawn.
ing where to develop his pieces. The advan
tage is that Black has more 'information' to Kan/Paulsen/Taimanov
go on before deciding what set-up to use. There has often been some confusion when
The disadvantage is that White also has chess players talk about these openings. The
more options at his disposal. More specifi subject of this book is the Kan Variation (1
cally, White can choose if he wishes to erect e4 cS 2 l2:\f3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6) .
the 'Maroczy Bind' with an early c2-c4 (this However, in the past this move order has
is avoided by Black in many other Sicilian also been referred to as the Paulsen Varia
defences by the insertion of an early ...l2:\f6, tion. Indeed, at my editor's insistence, my
inducing White to play l2:\c3) . 1997 booklet on this line was entitled Trends
Onto the actual attributes of the move in the Paulsen Volume 2. Looking at other

9
Sic ilia n Ka n

literature, The Oxford Companion to Chess, a advantage, but i n the 1970s many top
good guide, calls it the Paulsen but does grandmasters, including the likes of Ulf
mention that it can be called the K.an too. Andersson and Ljubomir Ljubojevic, dis
More recently people have come to accept covered many new defensive resources for
the Kan as the main name, but of course it's Black and these are seen throughout the
how well you play it that really matters! book. It was shown that Black's 'Hedgehog'
In most circles, the very similar variation pawn structure (e6, d6, b6 and a6) is in fact
1 e4 cS 2 t2Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tbxd4 tbc6 is very difficult to break down. Furthermore,
known as the Sicilian Taimanov (although Black's structure is very flexible and White
just to confuse things this line is also some sometimes has to use a lot of piece power
times referred to as the Paulsen!). Naturally ensuring that Black cannot break with either
the Kan can transpose into the Taim.anov ...dS or ...bS. Finally, White has chances to
and vice versa. The concept that really sepa attack on the kingside, in the centre and on
rates the two openings is that in the K.an the queenside but must be very careful not
Black either delays or forgoes the move to overextend himself in doing so, other
...tbc6 unless it is really beneficial. In this wise he runs the risk of being impaled on
book, on the whole, we will be concentrat one of those Hedgehog's spikes! It's true to
ing on pure 'Kan' positions and so we will say that those playing White, as well as
see more of ...t2Jbd7 than of ...t2Jc6. those with Black, need a lot of patience to
play these positions.
Maroczy Bind versus the Hedgehog
Scheveningen Structure

The diagram above shows White with


employing the so-called 'Maroczy Bind', a Later in the book we deal with a similar
structure which dominates the first few pawn structure but with a subtle difference.
chapters of this book. The prongs on c4 In the diagram above White's c-pawn is
and e4 promise a pleasant space advantage back on c2, normally blocked by a knight on
for the first player. Furthermore, Black's c3. This is known as the Scheveningen
important Sicilian pawn break in the centre structure (the Scheveningen Variation arises
with ... d6-d5 is now very difficult to achieve, after 1 e4 cS 2 t2Jf3 d6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tbxd4
while ...b7-b5, another typical Sicilian lunge, t2Jf6 5 tbc3 e6). Purely from a structural
is also prevented for a very long time. It was point of view, the Scheveningen structure is
once thought that this type of pawn struc less advantageous for White than the Ma
ture promised White a clear or even decisive roczy Bind (some would say it's actually

10
Intro duction

advantageous to Black). The point is that Chapter Order


there is now much less to prevent Black Chapters 1 -5 deal with 5 .id3. This solid
both advancing in the centre with ... d6-d5 move continues to be by far the most popu
and expanding on the queenside with ... b7- lar choice against the Kan. The chief posi
b5. White can use some method of con tive feature of 5 .id3 is its flexibility. White
tainment (with a2-a4, for example) but gen keeps the option open of erecting the Ma
erally this is not his main aim. roczy Bind with c2-c4, as well as simply
The advantage White has here over the forgoing this in favour of lLlc3. Perhaps the
Maroczy Bind is one of time. By missing only disadvantage of 5 .id3 is that Black
out c2-c4 White gains an extra tempo and in has so many different responses at his dis
open Sicilian positions a tempo is often the posal, so the white players needs to be well
difference between success and failure. booked up. Possible black responses include
Generally White will try to use this extra 5 ...lLlf6, 5 ... .ic5, 5 ...'ir'c7, 5 ...'ir'b6, 5 ...g6,
time to generate a quick attack against the 5 ...lbc6, 5 ...lbe7, 5 ... d5. The list goes on and
black kingside. Talking simply of pawn on!
moves, this will normally involve the ad Chapters 6-8 deal with the more tactical
vance f2-f4, after which Black has to con 5 lLlc3, immediately reaching the
stantly be on guard over f4-f5 and e4-e5 Scheveningen structure. Black has fewer
advances. Sometimes White also throws in choices here, the main 'Kan' responses be
g2-g4-g5 for good measure. Of course these ing 5 ...'ir'c7 and 5 ... b5.
plans are also possible in Maroczy Bind Finally, in Chapter 9 we deal with 5 c4,
positions, but in Scheveningen positions whereby White immediately sets up the
they are really crucial to the success of the Maroczy Bind. You would think that this
white player. Many games follow the same 'no-nonsense' move would be popular, but
formula: either White wins in barnstorming in fact the reverse is true and it's actually
fashion in under thirty moves, or Black sur much less common than both 5 .id3 and 5
vives the onslaught and later on feasts on lbc3. The main reason for this is that Black
the remains of White's overextended posi has many more options than simply to ac
tion. cept a Hedgehog structure.

11
CHAPTER ONE I
5 i.d3 '2Jf6 6 0-0 'Wic7
7 'Wie2 d6

1 e4 c5 2 lt:lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:lxd4 a6 tively (perhaps a t c5 o r even d6), instead of


5 .id3 lt:lt6 6 0-0 c7 7 e2 d6 boxing it in with the move 6... d6 (sec Chap
In this chapter we will be dealing with ter 3).
what is generally known as 'the main line' of
the Kan. Let's begin by considering the
opening few moves.
1 e4 c5 2 lt:lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:lxd4 a6
5 .id3 lt:lf6
5.. /2Jf6 is by far the most popular move.
Black develops his king's knight and pre
pares to castle. Alternatives to 5...4Jf6 will
be discussed in Chapters 4 and 5.
6 0-0
Moving the king into safety. It's ex
tremely uncommon for White to castle
queenside in the 5 .td3 variations of the
Kan so there is no particular advantage in 7 e2!
delaying castling. For alternatives, however, This clever move is again the most popu
see Chapter 3. I will mention here that 6 eS? lar choice for White. He renews the 'threat'
loses a pawn to 6...'it'a5+!. of e4-e5 and keeps his options open regard
6 . . . 'iic 7 ing pawn structure. There are, however,
This little queen move is the subject of quite a few alternatives (including the im
the first two chapters. Black takes control mediate 7 c4) and these are discussed in
over the long b8-h2 diagonal and protects Chapter 2.
the crucial e5-square - White was already 7 . . . d6
threatening e4-e5. The queen also keeps an On first sight this looks a little inconsis
eye on events down the c-file and directly tent with Black's previous move as the f8-
attacks White's c-pawn, which normally bishop is now blocked anyway. However,
ends up on c4. For the moment Black keeps most Kan players are loath to allow White
the option of developing his f8-bishop ac- to play an early e4-e5, dislodging the impor-

12
5 ii d3 t:Dt6 6 0 - 0 'IWc 7 7 '1We2 d 6

tant defensive knight on f6. Alternatives, bat Black's fianchetto. The bishop o n g7
including 7...i.c5 and 7....td6 are studied in provides an excellent shield for the black
Chapter 2. king but, as opposed to when the bishop is
8 c4 developed on e7, it doesn't protect the
slighdy vulnerable d6-pawn. White immedi
ately makes this his main target by posting a
rook on the half-open d-fi.le.
10 tt:Jf3 can simply transpose into the
main line after 10...0-0 but White docs have
some tricky move order options: 11 i.f4
tbc6 (11...tLlbd7 12 l::tacl!? tLlg4 13 l::tfdl
transposes to the note to Black's 12th move
in Game 5 without allowing the possibility
of what Kobalija played against Adams) 12
h3 (12 l::tfd1 transposes to Game 4)
12...tLld7 13 l::tacl tt:JccS 14 lLlxeS tLlxeS 15
l::tfd1 and we have reached a position from
With this move White sets up the Ma Game 3.
roczy Bind. White certainly has other plans, including
8 tLlc3 leads to positions discussed in a quick kingside attack involving the lunge
Chapter 6, while also important is the ag f2-f4 (discussed in Game 7). Another, more
gressive 8 f4 (see Game 13). positional, idea is to bolster the e4-pawn
8 . . . g6 with f2-f3 and aim for a gradual attack on
The idea of fianchettoing the king's the qucenside (see Game 6).
bishop in this line was discovered in the 1 0 . . . 0-0 1 1 t:Df3
1980s as a way of strengthening Black's
kingside in anticipation of a white offensive
in that area, and 8...g6 is now Black's most
popular response to 8 c4.
Classical development with 8...i.e7 is the
traditional way of playing the Hedgehog and
is discussed in Games 9-11, while 8...tt:Jbd7,
leaving the option open as to where to de
velop the dark-squared bishop, is the sub
ject of Game 12.
9 t:Dc3
White continues to develop naturally. In
most cases the knight's best square is c3,
from where it keeps an eye on the critical Continuing the basic plan. White clears
bS- and ciS-squares. However, White can wood from the d-fi.le and in some cases
also contest the long diagonal by fianchetto prepares to add pressure to d6 with i.f4
ing his own dark-squared bishop with 9 b3 (note that the immediate 11 .tf4? would
(see Game 8). simply lose a piece after 11...e5!). The stage
9 . iig7 1 0 l:!.d1
. . is set for a complex positional battle. Move
The plan beginning with this move was sequences, ideas and tactics from this posi
quickly installed as the critical way to com- tion are covered in Games 1-5.

13
Sicilian Kan

1 3 .i.e3
Game l 13 f4 tt::ld7 transposes to the note to
Z .Aimasi-Farago Black's 13th move in Game 3.
Linz 1995 1 3 . . . tiJd7
Black now has many options with his
1 e4 c5 2 lUt3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tUxd4 a6 knights, including ...ltJcS, ...tt::lceS and
5 .i.d3 ttJt6 6 0-0 c7 7 e2 d6 8 c4 ...tt::ldeS.
g6 9 lUc3 .i.g7 1 0 d 1 0-0 1 1 ttJt3 ttJc6 1 4.li!.ac1 ttJc5
1t...tt::lbd7 is also possible (see Game 5) 14...tt::lce5?! is a typical move in this type
but I believe that 1t...tt::lc6 gives Black more of position but in this instance, with White's
options, especially against 12 f4 (see bishop on e3, it leaves Black struggling to
Game 4). cover all his weaknesses: 15 tt::lxeS and now:
1 2 h3 a) 15...dxe5?! has been played here and in
similar positions but I don't like this move
at all.

This refinement was introduced after


black players found a good way of combat
ing the previously popular 12 .tf4 (see Black has voluntarily blocked his own
Game 4). With 12 h3 White doesn't rush dark-squared bishop and has presented
the bishop to f4. He reasons that with a White with a dangerous queenside pawn
black knight probably on its way to eS, the majority which can be galvanised immedi
bishop will be blocked on f4 and may be ately with 16 b4!, intending c4-c5. In gen
more happy on e3, at least for the time be- eral, the only time Black can justify playing
ing. Instead White cuts out both ...tt::l g4 and, ... dxeS is if there is a knight on c6 ready to
if Black plays...e6-e5, the idea of ...g4. jump into the newly-acquired d4 outpost
1 2 . . . b6 (see Game 2).
So that Black can develop his light b) 15... tt::lxe5 16 b3 b7 17 b1 l:tfd8
squared bishop on b7. Black normally plays (17 ...ab8 18 f4 tt::lc6 19 d2 fd8 20 f2
12...tt::ld7 13 e3 and only then 13...b6 (or reaches the same conclusion, while
13...tt::lde5 - see Game 2), reaching the same 17....l:ife8 18 d2 f8 19 tt::la4 tt::ld7 20
position as in the text. The move order cho tt::lxb6! tt::lxb6 21 aS tt::ldS 22 l:txdS! left
sen here can only make a difference if White a clear pawn up in Luther-Von
White decides to play 13 f4 (see Game 3), Gleich, Bonn 1993) 18 d2! (Von Gleich)
in which case Black is already committed to 18....Uab8 (18...8 19 tt::la4 tt::ld7 [Z.Alrnasi
playing ...b7-b6. Vogt, Altensteig 1993] 20 tt::lxb6! wins a

14
5 i.. d3 li:Jf6 6 0 - 0 c 7 7 e2 d6

pawn in a similar fashion) 19 f4 lL'lc6 20 a1) 17...ltJe5 18 ..ia2 ltJc5!? (18...lL'lxf3+


f2 i.a8 21 ltJa4 and the b-pawn drops off 19 gxf3! lL'lc5 20 d2 ..ie5 21 b4 lL'ld7 22 f4
the board. ..ixc3 23 l:lxc3 lL'lf6 24 f3 ..ixe4 25 fxe4
14...ltJde5?! allows the tactic 15 ltJd5! lL'lxe4 26 d3 lL'lxc3 27 xc3 e5 was agreed
(Black always has to be wary of this idea and drawn in Tsuboi-Urday Caceres, Sao Paulo
a similar one with ltJb5) 15...exd5 16 cxd5 1998, but I like White's bishop pair in the
and the pin on the c-ftle allows White to final position) 19 lL'lxe5 ..ixe5 20 ..id4
regain his piece with interest, for example ..ixd4 (20....:.fd8 21 b4 lL'ld7 22 ..ixe5 lDxe5
16...lL'lxf3+ 17 xf3 lL'le5 18 l:Ixc7 lL'lxf3+ 23 f4 ltJd7 24 l:Icd2 looks a bit better for
19 gxf3 i.xh3 20 h2 i.c8 21 b4 b5 22 White) 21 l:lxd4 e5! 22 l:td1 lL'le6 23 e3
..if4 and Black is struggling in this ending. lL'ld4 24 .l:tcd2 .Uad8 25 lL'le2 lL'lxe2+ 26
14...i.b7 15 ..ib1 lDc5 transposes to the xe2 ..ic8! and Black will equalise with
main line. .....ie6.
1 5 i.. b 1 a2) 17...lL'lca5 18 ..ia2 l:tac8 19 ltJd4
A typical move for this line. The bishop ..ixd4 20 i.xd4 e5!? (20...ltJxd4 21 l:lxd4 is
vacates the d-ftle (so that the d6-pawn feels a touch better for White - d6 is more vul
the full effect of the rook on d1), while nerable than c4) 21 ..ie3 b5 and now in
keeping an eye on the slightly vulnerable e4- stead of 22 f3 f5!, which was very unclear
pawn. The move ..ib1 is favoured over i.c2 in Luther-Mattick, Seefeld 1996, White
because on b1 the bishop is out of harm's should play 22 cxb5! .i.xe4 23 b6 c6 24
way and blocks neither rook. b7 xb7 25 lL'lxe4 'it'xe4 26l:Ixc8l:Ixc8 27
1 5 . . . i.. b 7 'ii'xa6, when Black's in serious trouble.
b) 16 b3 is a solid move, lending extra
support to the c4-pawn before commencing
further operations. In the game Kersten
Chuchelov, Willingen 1999, Black suc
ceeded in achieving a reasonable position
after 16...e7 17 d2 nfd8 18 lL'ld4 lDe5!
(as is so often the case in hedgehog posi
tions, the weakness of d6 becomes more
prominent as pieces are exchanged; hence
Black's reluctance) 19 ..ig5 f6! 20 ..ie3 g5.
Black still has weak pawns but his two
knights have acquired excellent outposts
and neither can be removed without White
1 6 d2! creating weaknesses in his own camp.
A good all-purpose move. White both 16 . . . ad8 1 7 b3
threatens d6 and sets up the possibility of Again a useful move - White gives the
exchanging dark-squared bishops with ..ih6. c4-pawn some protection. However, this is
However, White does have alternatives: hardly life threatening for Black and so it's
a) 16 a3!? prepares to chase the knight unsurprising that White has also tried more
away with b2-b4 but allows the black knight direct methods.
to settle after 16...lL'lb3 17 l:lc2 and now it's a) 17 i.h6 f5! is a suggestion of Istvan
a case of whether the knight on b3 proves Almasi and I believe that this is the way that
to be a nuisance for White or a liability for Black should treat this position. With both
Black (or perhaps both): ...b6-b5 and ...d6-d5 looking extremely un-

15
Sic ilia n Kan

unlikely in the short term, the ... f7-f5 lunge of removing the queen from the action and
is Black's only realistic pawn break. Of it's here that Black should be looking for
course there is always some risk advancing improvements.
pawns in front of your king, but in this case a) Another more recent game involving
this is counterbalanced by the activity it Ivan Farago saw the Hungarian GM trying
gives to the black position. Instead 17...lbe5 the slightly clumsy-looking manoeuvre
18 ..i.xg7 lbxf3+ 19 gxf3 xg7 20 b4 lbd7 17.....ta8 18 lbh2 (18 lbdS is again possible
21 ifxd6 'ir'xc4 22 ..i.d3 'ir'c8 23 lba4 was although on this occasion Black is not
better for White in Lane-Chuchelov, Ant forced to caprure) 18...1fb7!?, once again
werp 1999. angling for ...b6-b5. However, at least in this
b) 17 lDh2 (planning lDh2-g4) 17...'i!fe7 instance the queen still covers the second
18 lbe2?! (18 ..i.h6 is stronger, when I still rank and the advantage of this can be seen
like 18...f5) 18...a5 19 b3 lbb4! 20 lbc3 dS! in the sequence 19 i.h6 fS, when Black is
and Black, having achieved the desirable not forced to recaprure on g7 with the king.
...d6-d5 break, took over the initiative in Instead the game Graetz-Farago, Latschach
Van den Doel-Shaked, Wijk aan Zee 1998. 2001 continued 19 1fe2 fS! 20 f3 (20 exfS?
c) The more I look at 17 lDdS!, the more allows Black to demonstrate another point
I like it. It's the sort of move which should of ....i.a8 and ...1Vb7: 20.....txc3! 21 lhc3
always be considered, even with Black hav lbd4 22 'ir'g4 lbe2+ and Black wins) 20...f4
ing an extra knight blocking the c-ftle: and Black had gained some useful space on
the kingside, while securing eS as an out
post.
b) The immediate 17...f5!? looks to me
like the most consistent continuation (Zeller
also mentions this move).

17...exdS 18 cxdS (White regains his


piece as if the c6-knight moves White plays
b2-b4) 18...lbe5 (18...l::tfe8 19 dxc6 ..i.xc6 20
i.d4 looks uncomfortable for Black) 19
lDxeS ..txeS 20 b4 1fe7 21 bxcS bxcS 22
..igS ..tf6 23 ..txf6 ifxf6 24 f4 and White's Black immediately strives for counterplay
pawn centre promises him an edge. If Black with this logical move, for example:
has no improvement here then there is cer b1) 18 lbd4?? loses material to 18...f4!.
tainly a case for 17 lbdS over 17 b3. b2) 18 lDdS isn't so effective now. After
1 7 .'i'b8?
. . 18...exd5 19 cxdS Black has the choice of
Black defuses lDdS ideas and prepares two ways to play it: 19...lbe7 20 b4 fxe4 21
.....i.a8 and ...b6-b5. However, Alrnasi's sub i.xe4 lbxe4 22 l::txc7 lbxd2 23 lbxd2 ltJxdS
sequent play casts doubt upon the wisdom 24 l::txb7 l::tfl with an equal ending, or

16
5 i. d3 0, (6 6 0 - 0 c 7 7 e 2 d 6

19...lDe5 20 lDxeS dxeS 21 b4 f4 22 i-xcS


bxcS 23 bxcS nf6 which is difficult to as
sess. In this second line I think I would
prefer to play the black side - at least he will
probably have the option of returning the
piece for White's two dangerous passed
pawns.
b3) 18 exfS lDeS!? (18...gxf5 19 i-gS d7
[19...i-f6!?) 20 %:te1 lDeS also looks okay for
Black) 19 lDd4 (or 19 lDxeS dxeS 20 'ir'e2
gxfS and Black has a strong-looking pawn
centre) 19...gxf5 and Black can even con
sider following up with the aggressive
...f6-g6. Critical now is 20 b4 'ir'f7! 21 i.gS 2 3 . . . 0,d7
lid7 22 'ir'e2 lDe4 but Black looks to be The only way to hang on to the d6-pawn
okay in these complications. was to play the extremely ugly 23...l2Jb7 but
1 8 .i.h6! unsurprisingly Farago could not bring him
A very natural move, underlining Black's self to play like this!
weaknesses on the dark squares. This idea 24 xd6 0,e5 25 xb8 l:!.xb8 26 0,e2
has increased in strength now that the black l:!.fd8 27 0,d4 f7 28 f3 l:!.d7 29 0,b3
queen finds herself further away from the l:txd 1 + 30 l:!.xd1 0,xc4 31 l:!.d7 + e8
action. 32 l:!.xh7 l:!.d8 33 l:!.h8 + d7 34 l:!.xd8 +
1 8 . . . i.a8 xd8 35 i.d3 0,a3 36 e5?
Istvan Almasi suggests 18...-ic8 as an I don't understand this move at all. Why
improvement, but I don't really see how this allow Black's terrible bishop on a8 back into
helps that much after 19 lDh2. the game? 36 2 (I. Almasi) keeps total
1 9 0,h2! control.
An excellent idea. The knight plans to 36 . . . fxe5 37 .i.xg6 e4!
hop into g4, where it highlights Black's Black seizes his chance and reaches a
dark-squared problems. drawn ending.
1 9 . . . f6 38 fxe4 0,c2 39 b5 axb5 40 e5 0,e3 41
19...b5 amounts to nothing more than a g5 0,c4! 42 .i.d3 0,xe5 43 .i.xb5 e7
demonstration on the queenside. After 20 Y,-Y,
i-xg7 xg7 21 cxbS axbS 22 b4 Black's
weaknesses (bS, d6, f6 and h6) will become Game 2
very difficult to defend. Z .Aimasi-Anand
I would still be tempted to play 19...f5!?, FIDE World Ch., Groningen 1997
if nothing else to stop lDg4, although I do
admit this is not consistent with Black's 1 e4 c5 2 0,t3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 0,xd4 a6
previous play. 5 i.d3 0,t6 6 0-0 c7 7 e2 d6 8 c4
20 .i.xg7 xg7 2 1 0,g4 0,e5 22 b4 g6 9 0,c3 ..ig7 1 0 l:!.d1 0-0 1 1 0,t3 0,c6
0,xg4 23 hxg4 1 2 h3 0,d7 1 3 i.e3
White has triumphed in the middlegame 13 i-f4 transposes to Game 3.
batde and has acquired a virtually winning 1 3 . . . 0,de5 14 l:!.ac1 i.d7!
game. Black's position is full of weaknesses This deployment goes well with playing
and he has no real counterplay. ...ttJdeS. When compared to 14...b6?!, this

17
Sicilian Kan

set-up leaves Black much better placed to terbalanced by the fact that Black can utilise
cope withlLldS ideas. the outpost on d4.
1 5 lt:\xe5 The alternative 15...lLlxe5!? is also not
With this move White clarifies the posi bad: 16 f4!? (16 b3 fS transposes into note
tion in the centre, but there are some play 'a' to White's 15th move) 16...lLlxd3 17
able alternatives: lixd3 .ic6 1S ltJdS!? (1S lixd6 lixd6 19
a) 15 b3!? lLlxB+ (15... f5 16lLlxe5lLlxe5 xd6 .ixc3 20 xc3 .ixe4 is equal - Ribli)
17 f4lLlfl looks like a better bet) 16lixB 1S...exd5 19 cxdS (with an edge, according
liaS gives Black reasonable counterplay to Ribli) 19...llfeS! (targeting e4; 19....ixb2
according to Almasi, but I suspect that after 20 c2 .ig7 21 dxc6 fdS 22 lib3! looks
17 .id2 White still has an edge, for example strong for White) 20 .id4 .ixd4+ 21lixd4
17...f5?! 1S exfSlLleS (1S...gxf5 19lig3) 19 acS and Black looks okay.
lig3lLlxd3 20lixd3lixfS 21 xfS gxfS 22 1 6 f3!
.if4!. So that the queen can nudge herself to 2
b) 15lLle1 tries to avoid an exchange of and the c3-knight can contest the d4-square
knights, but this looks too artificial to me: from e2. The previously played 16 ltJdS
15...f5! 16 f4 lLlfl! (a good square for the caused Black no problems after 16...exd5 17
knight; here it protects the d6-pawn) 17 cxdS fdS 1S c2 acS, Arnason
exfS gxfS 1Sli2 acS 19 lLlBlidS 20 b3 Vyzmanavin, Manila Olympiad 1992.
lLle7 21 .ib1lLlg6 and Black was fine in the 1 6 . . . lt:\d4 1 7 'i't2 i.c6 1 8 lt:\e2 .l::.f dB 1 9
game Andriulaitis-Brooks, correspondence lt:\xd4!
1999. Giving Black a protected passed pawn,
c) 15 ltJdS? doesn't hit the mark here as but it will be well blocked and White will
Black has c6 well covered: 15...ltJxf3+ 16 have chances to use his pawns on both sides
lixf3 exdS 17 cxdS .ixb2 1S c2 .ieS 19 of the board.
dxc6 bxc6 and Black is a safe pawn up. 19 .ib 1 apparently adds more pressure
1 5 . . . dxe5!? on d4, but Black can reply calmly with
19...d7!, answering 20 lLlxd4 exd4 21
.ixd4?? with adS (Almasi), pinning and
winning the bishop.
1 9 . . . exd4 20 i.d2

Recapturing with the pawn is much more


playable when, as on this occasion, the
knight is on c6 rather than d7 (compare
with note 'a' to Black's 14th move in Game
1). It's true that White has an active pawn Almasi assesses this position as slightly
majority on the queenside but this is coun- better for White and I agree with him.

18
5 i. d3 0,t6 6 0 - 0 'Wif e 7 7 fie2 d6

White is threatening to expand with either Missing a win. Almasi gives the following
f3-f4 or b3-b4 and it's impossible for Black convincing analysis: 33 aS! .1d6 34 eS bxaS
to prevent both. Still, with careful defence 35 exd6!! .l:.xb 1+ 36 'ith2 and now:
Black shouldn't be in too much trouble. a) 36...a4 37 cS a3 38 c6 a2 39 .l:.xa2!! (but
20 . . . e 5 not 39 c7? .l:.ht+! 40 'itxhl alii'+)
O r 2 0...a 5 2 1 f4! and now ...e6-e5 i s an 39 ....txa2 40 .tfS!! and White wins.
swered by f4-f5. White can slowly arrange b) 36....l:.b3 37 cS with a further split:
kingside play by re-racking his rooks on f1 bl) 37....tf5 38 c6! .l:.xd3 39 c7 ii'c8 (or
and el. 39 .'iVf8 40 ii'xd3 .1xd3 41 c8ii' .1xc2 42
. .

21 b4! d7) 40 d7+.


Launching the queenside pawn majoriry b2) 37....l:.xd3 38 ii'xd3 .tfS 39 ii'd2
before Black has time for ...a6-a5. .1xc2 40 if'xc2 and the two connected
2 1 . . .i.d7?! passed pawns are decisive.
Almasi prefers 21...ii'd7, for example 22 33 . . . l:!.aB 34 .l:!.a2?!
ii'e2 (threatening to win a piece with b4-b5) Perhaps in time trouble, Almasi begins to
22...b5! 23 cS ii'b7 (dissuading White from drift quite badly and soon he is worse de
playing a2-a4) and it is difficult to see how spite the material advantage.
White makes any real progress. 34 . . . 'Wifd7 ! 35 aS? bxa5 36 'iff3 'ifdB! 37
22 'ii'e 2 aS?! .l:!.b7 .l:!.cB! 3B .l:!.f2 .l:!.c7 39 .l:!.b5 a4 40
And this is too panicky. Black succeeds .l:!.a5 a3 4 1 l:!.f1 l:lcB 42 .l:!.a6 'ii'e B 43
in splitting White's queenside but a pawn is 'ife4 l:.bB 44 .!:!.aS 'Wife7 45 'ii'f3 'Wifc7 46
too high a price to pay for this. l:tb5 'ifxe5 47 'iff6 'ii'c 7 4B l:!.a 1 .l:!.cB 49
23 bxa5 i.e6 24 h 1 .!:!.deB 25 l:.c2 i.fB 'iff2 i.fB 50 l:lc 1 'Wifc6 0-1
26 .l:!.b1 ..tcs 21 'iff2 .!:!.ebB? 2B f4!
This now works due to tactical reasons. Game3
If Black does nothing then White will push Dix-Edwards
with f4-f5. Therefore Anand opted to sacri Comspondence 1993
fice an exchange.
2B . . . exf4 29 i.xf4 'ifxa5 1 e4 c5 2 {jjf 3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 0,xd4 a6
Or 29....td6 30 .txd6 ii'xd6 31 cS ii'eS 5 i.d3 {jjf6 6 0-0 'Wifc7 7 'ii'e 2 d6 B c4
32 .l:.bS! and White targets the b7 -pawn. g6 9 0,c3 i.g7 1 0 l:ld 1 0-0 1 1 {jjf 3 0,c6
30 ..txbB .l:!.xbB 3 1 'ii'g 3! 'ii'd B 32 a4 b6 1 2 h3 0,d7 1 3 ..tf4

33 e5? The main alternative to 13 .1e3. White

19
Sicilian Ka n

adds immediate pressure to the d6-pawn the weaknesses in his position.


and induces Black to move a knight to e5.
1 3 . . . lbce5
Again Black must make the decision over
which knight, if any, should block on e5.
a) 13...b6 14 .!:tact .ib7 15 lLlb5!? (15
ltJd5 'ii'b8!; 15 b3!?) 15...axb5 16 cxb5 .l:txa2
17 bxc6 .ixc6 (Ribli), and now 18 .ixd6!
'ii'xd6 19 .ic4 is better for White.
b) 13...lL:lde5!? 14 .!:tact .id7, playing as
in the previous game, is very possible, for
example 15 b3 .l:tfc8!? (15... lL:lxf3+ 16 'ii'xf3
ltJd4 17 'ii'e3 e5 18 .ih6 .ie6 19 .ixg7
<;t>xg7 20 lLle2 lLlxe2+ 21 .ixe2 was a tiny
bit better for White in Palac-Galego, Lisbon 1 4 lbxe5
2001 but Black should still hold comforta It makes sense for White to clear the ten
bly) 16 .ib1 .ie8 and now: sion in the centre before deciding what plan
b1) 17 lL\et 'ii'b8 (Black is aiming for of action to take. That said, no harm can be
...b7-b5) 18 .ig3 lL:la7! 19 f4 lLlec6 20 lLlf3 done with the flexible move order 14 .!:tact
(20 1i'd2!? .l:td8 21 .ih4 .l:td7) 20...b5 21 c5?! b6 and now:
(21 fS!? looks more threatening) 21...b4 22 a) As I mentioned before, 15 lLlxeS
cxd6?! .ixc3 23 d7 .ixd7 24 .l:txd7 lL:ld4! 25 dxe5?! works less well when Black has a
'ii'd 1 lLlxf3+ 26 gxf3 lLlb5 and Black was knight on d7 rather than c6 as White tends
doing well in Moberg-Grabliauskas, Man to get a free hand on the queenside
hem 1999 - White's kingside strucrure is a (15...lL:lxe5 transposes to the main game): 16
little shaky. .ie3 .ib7 17 b4! f5 18 f3 l:.f7 19 c5 bxc5 20
b2) 17 .ie3!? looks stronger as now lL:la4 fxe4 21 fxe4 .if8 22lLlxc5
17...1i'b8 18 lLlxe5 dxe5?! 19 lL:la4! exploits
the weakness of b6.
c) 13....ixc3!? is a radical idea, giving up
the dark-squared bishop in order to cripple
White's queenside pawns. However, this
concept has acquired some credibility re
cently (it has been tried in similar positions)
and here it gives Black a playable game ac
cording to Ernst: 14 bxc3 e5 15 .ih6 (the
dark squares around the black king are look
ing vulnerable but it's quite difficult for
White to exploit them) 15...l:td8 16 lLlh2
lLlc5 17 .ic2 f6 18 f4 exf4 19 .ixf4 lLle5 20
lLlfl .ie6 21 lL:le3 .l:tac8 22 .l:td4 b6 and White was clearly better in Xie Jun
Movsesian, Hastings 1996/97.
see following diagra m
b) 15 b3 .ib7 16 .ib1 with a further
with an unclear position in Kotronias split:
Johannessen, Istanbul Olympiad 2000. b1) 16... f5 17 lLlxe5! lLlxe5 transposes to
Black's well-placed knights compensate for Palac-Farago below (17...dxe5 18 .ig5 looks

20
5 i. d3 liJ f6 6 0 - 0 W c 7 7 'if e 2 d6

slightly better for White - 1 8... h6 can be lt:Jf7 21 f4 f5 22 exf5 gxf5 23 'il'2 ..ic6 24
answered by 1 9 'il'd2!). i..d4 and the exchange of dark-squared
b2) 16 ... ltfe8! (the importance of this bishops favours White. Golubev-M.Ivanov,
move is explained in the note to Black's Delzlsau 1 997 continued 24 ... ..ixd4 25
17th move) 17 lt:Jh2 (17 lt:Jxe5! lt:Jxe5 trans 'il'xd4 lt:Jh8? 26 lt:Jd5! (again this move!)
poses into the main game) 1 7 ...l:tad8 1 8 26 ...'i!i'g7 27 'il'xg7+ xg7 28 liJc7 and
'i!i'd2 ( 1 8 i..g 5!?) 1 8. . .lt:Jc5 19 ..ig3?! f5! 20 f4 White won a crucial pawn.
lt:Jf7 and Black had reached a very comfort b) 1 7 ... f5 tends to work less well when a
able position in Wahls-Lau, Munich 1 992. pair of minor pieces have been exchanged -
Note what a good job the knight does on the weaknesses on d6 and b6 are more dif
f7, where it defends the d6-pawn. ficult to cover: 1 8 'il'd2 ltfd8 1 9 ..ig5! ltd?
1 4 . . . liJxe5 20 ..ie3 (targeting b6 now that the black
14 ... dxe5?! 15 ..ie3 b6 16 ltac1 trans knight has lost access to d7) 20 ...ltb8 21
poses to Xie Jun-Movsesian above. ..id4 ltdd8 22 f4 lt:Jf7 23 ..ixg7 xg7 24
1 5 l:!.ac1 b6 1 6 b3 i.b7 1 7 i.b1 exf5 exf5 (24...gxf5 looks more consistent,
Another possibiliry for White is 17 but 25 lte1 lte8 26 'il'd4+ still looks prom
'il'd2!?, planning to retreat the light-squared ising for White: 26 ... e5 27 'il'2 e4 28 lt:Jd5
bishop along the d3-f1 diagonal. This i..xd5 29 cxd5 'i!i'd7 30 l1c6 and White can
should be seriously considered as, although eventually open Black up by arranging g2-
..id3-b 1 is a very popular retreat in this line, g4) 25 lt:Jd5 i..x d5 26 cxd5 'il'd7 27 ltc6 and
the bishop can end up being rather passive White held a clear advantage in Palac
on this square. Farago, Oberwart 200 1 .
1 8 'ikd2 fB 1 9 e3
Preparing f2-f4 and hitting the b6-pawn.
If White is looking for an alternative
here, then I quite like the look of 1 9 ..ih6!?.
In general I believe that the exchange of
these bishops helps White as Black has
problems defending his dark-squared weak
nesses. With this in mind, Black's most logi
cal move looks to be 1 9 ... ..ie7. White can
continue in the same vein with 20 i..g5 and
now:
a) 20 ... l1ad8? 21 i..xe7 'ir'xe7 22 'ir'd4!
'il'c7 23 lt:Ja4 and White wins either the b
1 7 . . JUe8! or the d-pawn.
An important move. Black creates the b) 20 ... f6 21 i.e3 and White will follow
possibiliry of a d6-defending ... ..if8, while up with f2-f4.
he also takes steps against a possible c) 20 ...i.. f8 21 f4 (21 i.. h6 repeats the po
'il'd2/..ih6 plan for White. Other ideas in sition; black players would have to take this
clude: into account) 21 ...lt:Jc6 (21 ...lt:Jd7 22 e5!
a) 17 ...ltfd8 defends the d6-pawn but looks good for White) 22 lt:Jd5!? (22 i.. f6
now Black must always be wary of an an also look interesting) 22...exd5 23 cxd5 'ifd7
noying ..ig5: 1 8 'ir'd2 l:tab8 19 ..ig5! f6 (23 ... ltac8 24 dxc6 i.xc6 25 i.. f6 'ifb7 26
(19 ...ltd7? 20 lt:Jd5! exd5 21 cxd5 lt:Jc6 22 i..b2 i..g7 27 i..xg7 xg7 28 lie 1 gives
ltc2 and Black is in big trouble) 20 ..ie3 Black problems with his d6-pawn) 24 dxc6

21
Sicilian Kan

xc6 2S eS dS 26 l:tel and I like White's Black wins - Edwards. 28 l:te t looks better,
kingside pawn majority. although I still prefer Black after 28 ... l:tce8
Going back to Black's 1 9th move, 29 l:txeS dxeS 30 l:td 1 tt:'lcS 31 tt:'lxcS
19 ...l:tad8 20 xf8 l:txf8 21 f4 tt:'lc6 22 'i!VxcS+ 32 lif2 e4 33 'tixcS bxcS.
tt:'ldS!? is again promising for White. Per 28 . . ..1:!.ce8 29 lLlc3 lLlf6 30 .!:!.f1 lLlh5 3 1
haps Black's best is 19 ... xh6!? 20 'tixh6 fxg6 hxg6 3 2 .!:!.f2 'ilt'e7!
and only then 20...l:tad8. The balance of power has shifted very
1 9 . . . .!:!.ad8 much in Black's favour; the dark squares
Edwards later suggested 19 ... l:tab8, with around White's king are looking vulnerable
prophylactic defence of the b6-pawn, as an and Black's last move shows real ambition
improvement. Given the position Black to exploit this.
eventually reaches, it's hard to be critical of 33 g1 'i'h4 34 lLld5 b5 35 .l:!.cf1 ..txd5
the text move. 36 cxd5 lLlg3 37 .l:!.d 1 lLle2 + 38 f1
20 f4! ? .l:!.e3!
Pushing the f-pawn down the board is
double-edged as it creates weaknesses in
White's camp. Even though it loses a tempo
over the previous note, there is still some
thing to be said about playing 20 h6 here.
20 . . . lLld7 21 f5 .!:!.c8
21 ...a8 (Edwards), so that ...l:tb8 will
defend b6, is another sensible move which
may be slightly stronger than the text.
22 'ilif2 i.g7 23 .i.f4
23 tt:'la4!? is more ambitious. After
23 ... tt:'lcS (23 ... exfS!? 24 exfS tt:'lcS) 24 f6
f8 2S tt:'lc3 tt:'ld7 26 l:tfl it's not clear
whether the pawn on f6 will turn out to be a 39 .l:!.xe2
strength or a weakness. This desperate measure is forced. 39
23 . . . ..te5 24 .i.xe5 lLlxe5 25 lLla4 lLld7 d3 fails to 39 ...l:txh3! 40 gxh3 'i!Vxh3+ 41
26 'ilid2?! 'ite1 (or 41 l:tg2 'tif3+ 42 'itel tt:'lf4+)
White again targets the d6-pawn but 41...'i'ht + 42 l:tft 'i'h4+ 43 l:t2 tt:'ld4+ 44
Black has some tactical resources. Probably e2 tt:'lf3+ 4S 'itft 'i'h1 mate.
White should prevent Black from opening 39 . . . .l:!.xe2 40 'i'xe2 .l:!.xe2 41 xe2
the e-ftle with 26 fxg6 hxg6 and now 27 'i'h5 + 42 e 1 'ilt'e5 + 43 f2 'i'b2 + 44
'tid4 tt:'lcS (27...c6 28 tt:'lc3!) 28 lixd6 f3 g7 0-1
tt:'lxa4 29 bxa4 'ticS+ 30 'tixcS l:txcS 31 aS!
is better for White (3 1 ...l:txaS 32 l:td6!). Game4
26 . . . exf5! 27 exf5 .l:!.e5! Shaposhnikov-Karttunen
Suddenly Black has some freedom and Athens 200 1
his pieces soon become very active.
28 h 1 ? 1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6
This just seems to accelerate Black's pro 5 .i.d3 lLlf6 6 0-0 'i'c7 7 'i'e2 d6 8 c4
gress on the kingside. The d6-pawn cannot g6 9 lLlc3 .i.g7 1 0 lLlf3 0-0 1 1 .i.f4 lLlc6
be captured: 28 'tixd6?? l:tel + 29 'it2 1 2 .l:!.fd1
'tixd6 30 l:txd6 l:txcl 31 l:txd7 c6 and Or 11 l:tdt tt:'lc6 12 f4. This line (for-

22
5 il.. d 3 ttJf6 6 0 - 0 c 7 7 e 2 d 6

going h2-h3) was initially White's most 1 6. . .b 6 1 7 i.g5! f6 1 8 i.e3 Wh8 1 9 4:'Jd4
popular response, but Black's next move 4Jxd4 20 .ixd4 4Jc6 21 .ie3 f5 22 'ifd2
has been responsible for its decline. Note was better for White in Ernst-Hjartarson,
that Black can also answer 12 .l:tacl with Ostersund 1 992.
12 ... e5, for example 13 i.e3 i.g4 14 h3
4Jd4 1 5 i.xd4 .ixf3 1 6 'ifxf3 exd4 17 4Jd5
'ifd8 with equality.

a2) 15 ... .id7 16 4Je1 l:tad8 17 i.e3 f5 1 8


f4 and now, instead o f 1 8 . . .4:'Jg4 1 9 i.b6
.l:tde8 20 exf5 gxf5 21 4Jf3 which was better
12 . . . e5!? for White in Hendriks-Chuchelov, Dieren
An amazing idea, which I believe was the 1 997, Black should play the thematic
invention of Ivan Farago. At first it looks as 1 8 ...4Jf7! lending support to the d6-pawn.
though Black, who is blocking in his g7- b) 1 4 'ife3!? and now:
bishop and gifting White the d5-square, is b1) 14 ... 'ife7 1 5 .ie2! .id7 16 4Je1 (pre
committing positional suicide. However, paring i.h6 and f2-f4; at the moment the
this is not the whole story. Black soon knight on e5 has no retreat square)
achieves control over the d4-square, which 1 6 ... .l:tad8 1 7 i.h6 i.xh6 1 8 'ifxh6 g5
will be reinforced after ... i.g4. It seems that (18 ... f5 1 9 'ifd2 i.c8 20 f4 tLlf7 21 exf5 gxfS
this compensates Black fully and he has 22 .if3 with some advantage to White
excellent chances of equalising. [Milos]; note that White's light-squared
1 2...4Jd7 reaches positions similar to bishop is more active on f3 than it would be
ones discussed in Game 3, except that on b 1) 1 9 4Jc2 f6 20 4Je3 4Jg6 21 g3 tLlce 5
White hasn't expended a tempo on the 22 .l:tfl and White, who prepares 2-f4,
'semi-useful' h2-h3. You would think that stood better in Milos-Motwani, Manila
this should be enough to sway the balance Olympiad 1 992.
of the position in White's favour, but it's b2) 14 ... 4Jxf3+ (it makes sense to effec
not so clear, for example 1 3 lhc1 4Jde5 and tively gain a tempo - White has played
now: 'ii'e2-e3xf3) 1 5 'ii'x f3 tLle5 (1 5 ...4:'Jd4 1 6
a) 14 b3 'ife7 1 5 i.b1 'ifg3 e 5 1 7 .ie3 .ie6 1 8 4Je2 is better for
White - Zeller) 1 6 'ifc3! (a suggestion from
see followin g dia gram
Zeller; the queen is better placed on e3 than
with a further split: e2 as it facilitates a possible .ih6 and allows
a1) 1 5 ...l:tb8 1 6 Wh1 !? (or 1 6 i.e3 b6 1 7 the light-squared bishop to retreat along the
4Jd4 4Ja7 1 8 f4 4Jd7 1 9 tLl f3 .ib7 with an d3-f1 diagonal) 1 6 ... .id7 (grabbing on c4
edge in Mainka-Chuchelov, Senden 1 998) loses: 1 6 ... 4:'Jxc4? 1 7 .ixc4 'ii'xc4 1 8 .ixd6

23
Sicilian Kan

d8 1 9 l2Jd5) 1 7 i.e2! (again it should be f5 with good counterplay, Stefansson-Lutz,


said that the bishop is more active here than Manila Olympiad 1 992.
on b 1) 17 ...fc8 18 b3 i.e8 19 'il'd2 and 1 5 h3 i.xf3 1 6 'i'xf3 llld4 1 7 i.xd4
White maintains an edge, Gandalf 4.32g exd4
Nimzo 8, Cadaques 200 1 . Smooth posi
tional play from the machine with the white
pieces!
1 3 i.e3
13 ..ig5?! ..ig4! leaves White with some
problems over the threat of ... l2Jd4. Luther
Farago, Budapest 1991 continued 14 acl
l2Jd4 1 5 'il'e3 .i.x3 1 6 gx3 h6! 1 7 i.xh6
..ixh6 18 'il'xh6 lLix3+ 19 g2 l2Jd4 20
lLid5 'il'd8 21 g1 lLixd5 22 exd5 'il'f6 23
'it>fl 'il'g7 and with both a stronger minor
piece and pawn structure, Black stands very
well.
1 3 . . . i.g4! 1 8 llle 2
It's unusual for this bishop to be devel 18 .I:.xd4 'iVb6! hits b2 and d4, regaining
oped on g4, but on this occasion I believe the pawn. However, this might be White's
it's mightily effective. Black begins to lay best continuation, as in the game I believe
claim to the d4-square. Black might even be slightly better when the
1 4 ..tc2 players agreed a draw.
14 h3 leads to early simplification into a 1 8 . . . llld 7 1 9 lllx d4 llle 5 20 'i'e2 lllxc4
totally level position: 14 ...l2Jd4 1 5 i.xd4 21 ..tb3 :tea 22 :ac 1 b5 23 'i'd3 Y:z-Y:z
exd4 1 6 l2Jd5 i.x3 1 7 'il'x3 1!2-1/2
Z.Almasi-Farago, Hungarian Championship Game 5
1 992. Adams-Kobalija
FIDE World Ch., Las Vegas 1999

1 e4 c5 2 lllf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lllx d4 a6


5 ..td3 lllf6 6 0-0 'i'c7 7 'i'e2 d6 8 c4
g6 9 lllc3 ..tg7 1 0 lllf3 0-0 1 1 i.f4
If White chooses to play 1 1 d1 first
then Black has to be slightly careful if he
wishes to play ...t2Jbd7 and ...l2Jg4 (although
it has to be said that this line looks good for
White in any case - see below) .
a) The immediate 1 1 ...lLibd7 can be an
swered by 1 2 h3!?, preventing Black from
playing ...l2Jg4 and thus giving Black less
1 4 . . . :ac8! ? options. 12 ... b6 13 ..if4 (1 3 ..ie3!?) and
Also perfectly acceptable for Black is now:
14 ... l2Jd7 15 l2Jd5 'il'd8 1 6 h3 ..ix3 17 'il'x3 a 1) 13. .. i.b7?! 14 l:tacl l2Je5 1 5 lLixe5
lLic5 1 8 'il'e2 lLie6 (taking complete control dxe5 16 i.e3 and Black has no compensa
over d4) 19 'il'd2 tLicd4 20 i.d3 b8 21 f3 tion for White's active queenside pawn rna-

24
5 d3 ti:J f6 6 0 - 0 ike 7 7 ii e 2 d6

jority, Hamdouchi-L.Marin, Sitges 1 999. some of the sting out of ...ltJh5.


a2) 1 3...ltJh5 14 ..1d2!? (preventing the a) 12 ... ltJg4 13 l:r.fd 1 leads to the note to
pawn-crippling ... ..ixc3; 14 ..1e3 ..1xc3 1 5 Black's 1 2th move.
bxc3 is similar to the main game) 1 4.....1b7 b) 12 ...ltJh5 may be the best move in any
1 5 l:.acl l:.ac8 1 6 b3 l:r.fe8 17 ..1e3 (17 ..ib 1 case; at least the pressure on d6 is relieved
is safer) 17 ...ltJc5 1 8 ..ibt and now, instead for the time being: 1 3 ..ie3 b6 14 l:.fdl ..ib7
of 1 8 ... ..1ffi 19 ltJh2! ltJf6 20 ltJg4 ltJxg4 21 15 'tid2 ltJhf6!? (15 ...l:.fe8 may be more
hxg4 giving White a pleasant position in accurate; Black can always defend with
Kalod-Chuchelov, Cappelle Ia Grande 2002, ... i.ffi) 1 6 ..1e2!? ltJxe4 (16 ... ltJe8? 1 7 b4
I believe Black should grab the pawn with l:tc8 1 8 ..if4 ltJe5 1 9 ltJxe5 dxe5 20 ..1e3
1 8 ... ..1xc3 1 9 l:.xc3 ltJxe4. White certainly again left Black with no compensation for
has compensation for the pawn, but White's queenside advantage in Gromotka
whether this is enough to give him the ad Podzielny, correspondence 1 996) 17 ltJxe4
vantage is another matter. ..1xe4 18 'tixd6 l:.a7! and Black is just about
b) t t ...ltJg4 12 ..1f4 (12 h3 ltJe5 13 ltJxe5 okay.
dxe5! and Black can follow up with ... ltJc6- 1 2 . ti:Jh5!?
. .

d4) 1 2...ltJd7 transposes to the note to The older move is 1 2 ...ltJg4 but White
Black's 1 2th move. has good chances to secure an advantage
1 1 . . . ti:Jbd7 against this. The game continues with 1 3
l:tac 1 and now:
a) 13. .. ltJde5 1 4 h3 ltJxf3+ 1 5 'tixf3 ltJe5
16 'tie3 transposes to note 'b2' to Black's
twelfth move in Game 4, except that White
has the extra move h2-h3. This was already
quite pleasant for White and the extra move
is a bonus.
b) 13 ...ltJge5 14 ltJxe5 and now:
bl) 14 ... dxe5?! has been suggested in at
least one source, but I don't see the point.
After 1 5 ..1e3! Black has no active plan and
White will push on the queenside with the
b2-b4 advance; this is obviously better for
This move used to be Black's most White.
popular choice but it has now been super b2) 1 4...ltJxe5 1 5 'tid2 l:.e8 16 ..1e2 ..iffi
seded by the more flexible 1 1...ltJc6. (De Vreugt-Bosboom, Dieren 1 999) and
Again Black can continue with 1 1 ... ltJg4 now I like 1 7 'tid4! ltJc6 18 'tie3 and Black
if he is worried about White preventing this is under some pressure from threats of ltJa4
with h2-h3; 1 2 l:.fd t ltJd7 transposes into and c4-c5.
the note to Black's twelfth move. Also pos c) 1 3. .. b6 14 'tid2! (planning to retreat
sible is 1 t ...ltJh5!?, hitting f4 and c3 before the bishop to e2 or ft ; this plan of Lastin's
White has the chance to defend the c3- looks stronger than the previous 1 4 b3 and
knight with l:.ac l . 1 5 ..ibl) 14 ...ltJde5 (14.....1b7 1 5 .1ft gives
1 2 ltfd1 Black serious problems with his d-pawn:
In his notes to this game in Informator, 1 5 ... ..1xc3 16 .ttxc3 e5 1 7 'tixd6 'tixd6 1 8
Adams suggests 1 2 l:.acl !?, giving the c3- l:.xd6 ltJc5 1 9 ltJxe5! ltJxe5 20 ..1xe5 ltJxe4
knight some added support and thus taking 21 l:.xb6 ltJxc3 22 l:.xb7 is very strong) 1 5

25
Sicilian Ka n

e2 l:td8 1 6 g5 f6 (or 1 6 ...l:td7 1 7 lL'ld4 1 4 bxc3 e 5


h6 1 8 .th4 g5 1 9 .tg3 .tb7 20 h4 gxh4 21 Naturally Black attempts to regain some
.txh4 Wh7 22 l2Jd5! exd5 23 cxd5 'tlib8 24 control over the dark squares. Adams also
f4 'ii'g8 25 lL'lf5 1 -0 Lastin-Shaposhnikov, mentions the sensible-looking 1 4...b6, pre
Moscow 1 999) 17 lL'lxe5 lL'lxe5 18 e3 paring to develop the bishop on b7.
18 ... l:.b8 19 b3 lL'lf7 20 f4 f5 21 exf5 gxf5 22 1 5 ..th6 .l:!.e8 1 6 e3 lt:\c5 1 7 h3
.th5! and Black has trouble developing his Preventing ... .tg4.
c8-bishop, Lastin-Kobalija, Elista 200 1 . For 1 7 . . . ..te6
example, 22...b7 is met by 23 'ii f2 .tc6 24 17 ... .td7, preparing . . ..tc6 (Adams), may
lL'ld5! (Ribli). be stronger.
1 3 ..te3 1 8 ..te2 lt:\f6 1 9 lt:\d2 'it>hB
13 .tg5 invites Black to do the same:
15 ... .txc3 14 bxc3 e5 15 'ii'd2 lL'lc5 1 6 .tc2
f6 17 .te3 l:td8 18 'iie 2 .te6 with an equal
position, Kulaots-J.Bellin, Gausdal 2000.
The safe 13 d2 leads to positions simi
lar to the those studied in note 'b' to
White's twelfth move, but White's bishop is
less active on d2 and Black has a reasonable
chance to equalise: 13 ... b6 14 !tact .tb7 1 5
e3 ltac8 1 6 .tb1 l:tfd8 1 7 h3 'iib 8 1 8 b3
b5!, Nijboer-Bosboom, Wijk aan Zee 1 991
is another example of a successful black
strategy.
1 3 . . . ..txc3! ? Black has completed his plan that began
with 1 3 ....txc3 and has achieved a very solid
position, despite the absence of the dark
squared bishop. Nevertheless, White still
holds a slight edge. The problem is that,
although Black is extremely solid at the
moment, at some point the position is likely
to open up and then Black may feel the
pinch on those dark squares. This is indeed
what happens in the game.
20 ..tg5 lt:\gB 21 g3 c6 22 ..te3
.!:!.adS 23 .l:!.ab1 .l:!.d7 24 .U.b4 f6 25 f3
cB 26 f2 lt:\e7 27 lt:lb3!? lt:\xb3 28
axb3 b5 29 cxb5 a5 30 .l:!.c4! ..txc4 3 1
Again we meet this outwardly-shocking ..txc4 d5 3 2 exd5 a 4 3 3 .i.c5 axb3 34
idea of giving up control of the dark ..txb3 lt:lf5 35 b6 a6 36 g4 b5 37
squares. The compensation, as always, is the .l:!.b1 lt:\d6 38 ..tc2 a6 39 .U.b4 lt:lb7? 40
infliction of doubled isolated c-pawns on ..ta4 l:!.xd5 4 1 ..txeB .l:!.xc5 42 .l:!.a4! d3
the white camp and the chance to find use 43 .l:!.aB b 1 + 44 'it>g2 xb6 45
ful outposts for the knights. ..txg6 + 'it>g7 46 ..txh7 .l:!.b5 47 xb6
13 ... b6 14 !tact .tb7 transposes to note .l:!.xb6 48 .i.e4 .l:!.b2 + 49 'it>g3 lt:\d6 50
'b' to White's twelfth move. .l:!.a7 + 'it>fB 51 .i.d5 .U.c2 52 .l:!.d7 1 -0

26
5 i. d3 &iJ f6 6 0 - 0 ik c 7 7 ik e 2 d6

involves b2-b4, tt:'!d4-b3 and a2-a4-aS. With


Game 6 the exchange of a-pawn for b-pawn, Black's
Johnson-West queenside structure is more vulnerable and
Comspondence 1997 White also has a chance to create a powerful
passed pawn with c4-cS. If Black finds no
1 e4 c5 2 &iJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 &iJxd4 a6 answer to this plan then his position can
5 i.d3 &iJf6 6 0-0 ikc7 7 ike2 d6 8 c4 soon become critical. He has to sit tight and
g6 9 &iJc3 i.g7 10 i.e3 0-0 1 1 .l:!.ac1 look for opportunities to break with either
&iJbd7 1 2 l:tfd1 b6 ... b6-bS or, more likely, ... d6-dS. If Black
Black has the opportunity here to change can arrange a successful advance then usu
the character of the position by trading his ally his problems are over, but White will
d7-knight for White's light-squared bishop: not allow this to happen without a fight.
1 2...tt:'!eS!? 13 f3 i.d7 14 b3 :ac8 1 S 'ii'd2 Sometimes Black even has to consider play
(1S i.b1 !?) 1 S ... tt:'!xd3 1 6 'lixd3 1:tfd8 1 7 ing ... d6-dS as a pawn sacrifice.
tt:'!de2 tt:'!e8 1 8 'it>h 1 'ii'aS 1 9 i.d2 'lieS 20 1 4 'i'f2 l:tac8 1 5 i.f1
tt:'!f4 'Wa3 21 i.e3 'WaS 22 i.d2 'lia3 23 .U.c2 1 4 'lif2 and 1S i.ft is typical prophylaxis
bS! and Black was fine in the game Vogt from White. The light-squared bishop
Bischoff, Baden-Baden 1 992. Considering moves out of range from attack via ...tt:'!cS
the ease with which Black gains equality or ...tt:'!eS and White removes some wood
here, it's surprising that this idea hasn't been from the d-fJ.!e, uncovering the potential of
seen more often. the d 1 -rook.
1 3 f3 i.b7 1 5 . . JUe8! ?
A good square for the rook as after . . .d6-
dS the e-fJ.!e may well be opened. If Black
wishes to avoid the next note, then he can
play 1 S ...'Iib8 16 b4 and only then
1 6 ...:fe8.
Given the precariousness of Black's posi
tion in this game, it's certainly worth explor
ing different ways of creating counterplay
against White's super-solid structure. One
idea is 1 S ... tt:'!hS!?, for example 1 6 b4 i.eS
(with the idea of ... d6-dS) 1 7 g3 l:tfe8 18 f4
(18 tt:'!b3, keeping the pawn on f3, looks
stronger) 1 8...i.g7 and Black can be very
Here we see a totally different approach happy with his work. White has been lured
from White, who very much adopts an forward on the kingside and is now sof
'anti-Hedgehog' formation. The first thing tened up along the h1 -a8 diagonal. Black's
to notice is White's particularly solid king b7 -bishop has come to life and suddenly
side structure. The e4-f3-g2 pawn formation Black has ready-made counterplay against
very much blunts the power of the b7- c4 and e4 (Kalod-Movsesian, Zlin 1 997).
bishop and it's unlikely that White will be 1 6 b4
provoked into changing this structure with Black's move order allows White the tac
out good reason. With his kingside well tical possibility of 1 6 tt:'!dbS!? axbS 1 7 tt:'!xbS
protected, White will aim to attack Black on 'Wb8 1 8 tt:'!xd6 when White will obtain a
the queenside. A typical and dangerous plan rook and two pawns for two knights. If

27
Sicilian Kan

White can create passed pawns on the tt'lxc8 .l:txc8 was a speculative exchange
queenside then Black may struggle, but this sacrifice which worked in the game Kaeser
is all very double-edged as Black certainly Podzielny, Dortmund 1 992, but shouldn't
benefits from having an extra piece in the give Black enough compensation.
middlegame. The game Browne-Petrosian, c) 17 ....ia8 18 cS! again looks strong.
Milan 1 975 is rather unhelpful: after d) 1 7 ... .if8 has been played a few times
1 8... .ic6 1 9 b3 .if8 20 tt'lxe8 .l:txe8 21 d2 but surprisingly I can't find any examples of
the players decided to call it a day. I t seems the obvious 1 8 .ixb6. West believes accept
that most white players are reluctant to re ing the sacrifice is critical and calls Black's
linquish their positional edge to reach such compensation 'nebulous'. I agree with him
an unclear position. - I don't think Black's position is strong
1 6 . . .'i'b8 enough to be so bold with this sacrifice:
Removing the queen from the c-ft!e and after 18 ... tt'lxb6 19 ifxb6 both 19 ... d5 20
thus lining up the option of ... d6-d5. exdS tt'ld7 21 'i!fd4 exdS 22 tt'lxdS and
1 7 lLlbJ 1 9 ... .ih6 20 .l:tc2 dS 21 exdS .if4 22 g3
.ic7 23 iff2 exdS 24 cS seem to fall short
for Black.
1 8 a4
White continues with the logical plan of
a4-a5. I also think that the direct 18 tt'la4
.ia8 1 9 cS!? is worth considering: 1 9 ... b5 (or
1 9 ...bxc5 20 bxcS dxcS 21 tt'laxcS tt'lxcS 22
tt'lxcS aS 23 ife1 and Black's a-pawn will be
picked off) 20 tt'lb6 tt'lxb6 21 cxb6 .l:txct 22
.l:txcl and White's passed b-pawn looks
dangerous.
1 8 . . . d5!?
Imaginative play. With Black's rook
White's queenside play is beginning to blocking the bishop on b7, this thematic
look threatening. Already the b6-pawn is move looks unplayable here, but Black does
attacked. have some resources.
1 7 . . J:tc6 !? The continuation 1 8 ...tt'le5 19 bS .l:tcc8
'[fhis move] looks ugly (and downright 20 .ixb6 tt'lxc4 21 .ia7 ifa8 22 .id4 .l:ted8
bad!) but actually it gives nothing away and 23 .ixc4 .l:txc4 24 tt'laS .l:tcc8 25 b6 .l:td7 26
has some points that are not immediately b2 tt'le8 27 .ixg7 tt'lxg7 28 eS left Black
obvious' - Guy West. I imagine the Austra in big trouble in Branding-Haufe, corre
lian IM finally got round to this move after spondence 1 998.
discovering faults with Black's alternatives. 1 9 b5!?
a) A fter 17 ....ic6 West likes the direct 1 8 1 9 cxdS ('fantastically complicated' -
cS, highlighting a problem with Black's pre West) must be critical. West believes that
vious move: it leaves the a-pawn unde Black can hold the balance but keeps his
fended. 1 8 ...bxc5 (or 1 8... dxc5 19 .ixa6 and analysis to himself (and why not?): 1 9 ... exd5
Black cannot avoid material loss) 19 bxcS 20 exdS (20 tt'lxdS tt'lxdS 21 exdS .l:txcl 22
tt'lxcS 20 tt'lxcS dxcS 21 .ixa6 .l:tcd8 22 tt'lxcl 'i!fd6 and Black has typical compensa
.ixcS and White is just a clear pawn up. tion in the form of targets at dS and b4 plus
b) 17 ... tt'le5 1 8 tt'la4! dS 19 tt'lxb6 dxe4 20 a more solid structure on the kingside; 20

28
5 d 3 tl:J f6 6 0 - 0 'ike 7 7 'ii e 2 d6

b5 axb5 21 .txb5 reaches the game posi to many players this is an enticing strategy
tion) 20 .. Jhc3!? (20 .. J:td6 21 i.f4 lt'le5 22 but Black, with his fianchettoed bishop
lt'ld2! looks good for White) 21 xc3 lt'lg4 providing extra cover, is ready for White to
22 fxg4 .ixc3 looks like the most important throw in the proverbial kitchen sink.
line. Does Black really have enough for the
pawn? I don't believe so.
1 9 . . . axb5 20 cxd5
After 20 axb5 Black can choose between
20... d6!? and 20 ...l::tcc8 21 cxd5 exd5 22
lt'lxd5 lt'lxd5 23 cxd5 1Wd6. In the latter case
I certainly agree with West that Black has
enough counterplay. He follows up this
assessment with the line 24 i.c4? 1Wa3!,
when it is difficult to deal with the threat of
...xc4.
20 . . . exd5 21 xb5 dxe4! 22 tl:Jxe4!
White can grab the exchange for a pawn
with 22 .ixc6 i.xc6 but Black always has 1 0 . . . 0-0 1 1 tl:Jf3
good practical chances in this type of posi White retreats the knight for kingside
tion. operations and prepares a possible e4-e5.
22 . . . tl:Jxe4 23 fxe4 tl:Je5! But what happens if White lunges forward
Another offer of the exchange. in 'caveman' fashion? Kan players should
24 h3 not be unduly worried by such shows of
Again White declines. 24 i.xc6 .ixc6 aggressiOn:
again promises Black good compensation - a) 1 1 e5?! is premature: 1 1 ...dxe5 12 fxe5
both a4 and e4 are attacked while ...lt'lg4 is lt'lfd7 shows a big advantage in developing
also in the air. the bishop on g7 rather than e7. Black's
24 . . Jbc1 25 llxc 1 :d8 kingside is rock-solid (there are certainly no
Threatening to exchange knight for worries about threats on h7 as there would
bishop with ...lt'ld3. The b6-pawn remains be without ...g7-g6) . Furthermore, White's
very weak but this is counterbalanced by the e5-pawn is a major weakness which could
vulnerability of the e4-pawn - the position fall at any moment: 13 .if4 lt'lxe5 14 ae1
is more or less equal. lt'lbd7 1 5 h 1 1Wd6 and White has run out
26 :t1 .be4 27 .txb6 :c8 28 :c 1 ! of good moves.
l:txc 1 + 29 tl:Jxc 1 'ikd6 % - % b) 1 1 f5!?, however, deserves more re
spect. White activates the rook on f1 and
Game l adds pressure to the e6-pawn. He docs,
Borngaesser-Lau though, give away the important e5-square.
Essen 1996 White players should never give away this
square lightly as a black knight will find it to
1 e4 c5 2 tl:Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tl:Jxd4 a6 be a wonderful outpost: 1 1 .. ..l::te 8 1 2 fxe6
5 i.d3 tl:Jf6 6 0-0 'ikc7 7 fie2 d6 8 c4 fxe6 13 'iti>h 1 lt'lfd7! (heading for e5) 14 .ie3
g6 9 tl:Jc3 g7 1 0 f4 lt'lc5 15 acl b6 16 b3 .ib7 and the players
Raw aggression! What happens if White rather unhelpfully agreed a draw in Luther
goes for glory on the kingside against Kochycv, Leningrad 1 989. Black is com
Black's solid structure? It must be said that fortable in the final position. White has no

29
Sicilian Kan

entry squares on the f-Ele, the knight on e5 to do anything constructive without allow
is a powerful beast and Black can follow up ing Black to break in the centre or on the
with ...lt:Jb8-d7-c5. queen side.
1 1 . . . b6 1 2 d2 b7 b) 14 .. .l:he8!? (Black counter-attacks
where White believes he is strongest - on
the kingside!) 1 5 b3 lt:Jh5! 16 l:tfe 1 (White
can push the knight back with 1 6 g4 lt:Jhf6
but it's very possible that White will later
feel the draught around his king, especially
if the a8-h1 diagonal opens up) 1 6... ..i.h6 1 7
g3 f5! 1 8 ..i.b1 lt:Jdf6 and Black's bishop on
b7 is a marvellous piece, Matulovic-Cvitan,
Yugoslav Championship 1 988.
1 4 . . . l:tac8 1 5 1Vf2
A typicai manoeuvre. White's queen is
heading for h4, where it hopes to participate
in a kingside attack.
1 3 l:tac1 1 5 . . . 1Vb8 1 6 1Vh4
A prophylactic move. White wishes to
play b2-b4 (to prevent ...lt:Jd7-c5) and thus
takes his rook off the long a 1 -h8 diagonal to
avoid tricks. More direct attempts are not
dangerous for Black.
a) 13 e5? is again too rushed and White
may simply end up a pawn down: 1 3 ...dxe5
14 fxe5 lt:Jfd7 15 if4 ..i.xf3! 16 :xf3 lt:Jc6
and Black threatens both the e5-pawn and
...lt:Jd4.
b) 13 l:he1 lt:Jbd7 14 e5?! isn't much bet
ter: 14 ... dxe5 1 5 fxe5 lt:Jg4 16 if4 ..i.xf3 1 7
l:txf3 lt:Jgxe5 1 8 l:te3 11ad8 and White has
litde to show for his pawn. 1 6 . . . b5!
1 3 . . . lt:lbd7 1 4 b4 Striving for the initiative on the queen
14 h 1 is a typical prophylactic move side. Tactics against the e4-pawn and
for White in the Kan: in one go White White's king on the long diagonal support
solves any problems with tactics involving a this lunge.
check along the g 1 -a7 diagonal. Whether 1 7 cxb5 axb5 1 8 ..txb5?
this is worth expending a tempo over is a White cannot resist the pawn, but after
long-running debate in many positions. this move his centre collapses. 1 8 i.e3
a) 14 ... l:tac8 (the traditional way) 1 5 b4 looks stronger.
'iib 8 (vacating the c-flie and unleashing the 1 8 . . . ..txe4! 1 9 xd7 1Va7 + 20 Wh 1
power of the c8-rook; Black is eyeing up 1Vxd7
opportunities to break with either ... b6-b5 Black possesses the centre pawns and the
or ... d6-d5) 16 ..i.e3 'ifa8! 1 7 lt:Jd2 l:tfe8 with control they give is far more important than
a finely balanced position, Zude-Hulak, any endgame potential of White's passed
Bundesliga 1 990. It's very difficult for White pawns on the queenside. It's safe to say that

30
5 JJ.. d3 0, (6 6 0 - 0 'i'c 7 7 'i' e 2 d 6

Black is already clearly better. White's next when employed against classical black de
move blunders a pawn, after which he lost velopment (see Games 10 and 1 1 ).
the will to continue.

Another option for White is to develop


21 b5? i.d3 0-1 his knight on d2: 1 1 lL'ld2 lL'lbd7 1 2 act b6
13 h1 ..tb7 14 ..tb1 feB 1 5 f4 and now
Game 8 1 5 ... e5! shows a disadvantage in White's
Short-Sax choice of square - there is no knight ready
Amsterdam 1983 to jump into the ourpost on d5. Gyimesi
Farago, Pula 2000 concluded 1 6 fxe5 dxe5
1 e4 c5 2 0,t3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 0,xd4 a6 17 ll'l4f3 ll'lh5 18 'ii'f2 1/2-1h. One can say
5 JJ.. d 3 0,t6 6 0-0 'i'c7 7 'i'e2 d6 8 c4 that Black is certainly not worse in the final
Note that the actual move order to this position.
game was 8 b3 ll'lbd7 9 c4 g6 10 i.b2 ..tg7 1 1 . . .b6 1 2 :ad1
1 1 lt:'lc3 0-0 1 2 ad1 b6 1 3 ..tb1 i.b7 but I White continues to improve his pieces -
have tinkered with it to include other possi the rook can add pressure to the slightly
bilities. vulnerable d6-pawn.
B . . g6 9 b3
. The 'caveman' approach is too crude to
When discussing move orders, it should succeed: 12 f4 ll'lbd7 1 3 act i.b7 and
be mentioned that 9 ll'lc3 ..tg7 10 b3 is now:
slightly inaccurate as it gives Black the op a) 1 4 e5? dxc5 1 5 fxe5 ll'lh5 and the e
tion to break with 10 ... b5!?, taking advan pawn just drops off the board.
tage of the undefended c3-knight. b) 14 f5?! ae8! 1 5 fxe6 fxe6 and White
9 . . . JJ..g7 1 0 JJ.. b 2 0-0 1 1 0,c3 has achieved nothing except to give away
This is another popular set-up for White. the e5-ourpost.
In my opinion, the fianchetto of the c l 1 2 . . . JJ.. b 7 1 3 JJ.. b 1 0,bd7
bishop gives a harmonious 'feel' t o the The typical Kan move, but 13 ...ll'lc6 is
White position - his pieces look to be on also not bad: 14 ll'lxc6 ..txc6 1 5 d2 l:lfd8
nice squares. White will try to attack in the 1 6 fd1 (Hi.ibner-Lutz, Baden-Baden 1 992)
centre (pressure down the d-flie) and the and now Hi.ibner suggests 1 6 ...lt:'ld7!?, an
kingside. Nevertheless, Black's solid king swering 17 l:.xd6 with 17 ... ..te5.
side structure, aided by the fianchetto, is 14 h 1
well set up to oppose White's ideas. This Note that the immediate advance 14 f4
queenside fianchetto is more successful should be answered by 1 4...e5!, as in the

31
Sicilia n Kan

game.
1 4 . . JHe8 1 5 f4 e5! Game 9
Trapl-Tompa
Decin 1977

1 e4 c5 2 lt:'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:'lxd4 a6


5 ..id3 lt:'lf6 6 0-0 'i'c7 7 'i'e2 d6 8 c4
i.e7
Finally we come to the classical devel
opment of the f8-bishop. Advantages over
the fianchetto include the saving of a
tempo, no weakening of the dark squares
and better protection of the d6-pawn. The
main disadvantage is that Black's kingside is
less well protected.
An important defensive thrust in the Kan 9 lt:'lc3 0-0
which highlights another positive feature of
the kingside fianchetto: ... e6-e5 becomes
much more playable as White's knight no
longer has access to the fS-square, such an
important point for White's attacking ambi
tions. As for the qualities of ... eS, it's true
that Black gives away the dS-square, but this
is compensated for by the acquisition of the
eS-square and pressure against White's iso
lated e-pawn. Black is certainly not without
counterplay.
Strangely enough, 1 5 ... i.f8 would trans
pose to the note to Black's 1 4th move in
Game to (which was fine for Black), al 1 0 'ith 1
though of course it looks ridiculous to play Once again we see this prophylactic idea,
it here! clearing the king from possible tactics along
1 6 fxe5 lt:'lxe5 1 7 J:t.de1 b5!? the long gl -a7 diagonal. John Nunn has also
Now the game explodes into unclear described such moves as 'lazy' - White can't
complications. If Black wishes to play more be bothered to work out the tactics on every
quietly, then 1 7 ...l::te7 with a possible dou move so he gets rid of the possibility. On
bling on the e-ftle makes sense. this occasion there is a case for deleting it,
1 8 cxb5 d5! 1 9 J:t.xf6! ? i.xf6 20 bxa6 or at least postponing it for the time being.
i.xa6 21 lt:'lxd5 'i'd6 22 lt:'lb5 ..ixb5 23 The extra tempo could, after all, prove to be
lt:'lxf6 + 'i'xf6 24 'i'xb5 'i'f2 25 ..ic3 very useful in building up a strong attack.
lt:'lg4 26 'i'g5 l:lac8 27 i.b4 'i'd4 28 More aggressive is 10 f4!? and now:
'i'xg4 'i'xb4 29 J:t.f1 'i'd2 30 'i'f3 J:t.e7 a) 10 ...lt::lc 6?! 1 1 lt::lx c6! bxc6 (or t t . . .'ilt'xc6
31 h4 J:t.c3 32 'i'f6 l:td7 33 'it>h2 l:tc 1 34 12 eS dxeS 1 3 fxeS lt::ld7 14 i.f4 and White
..id3 .l:!.xf1 35 i.xf1 'i'e 1 36 'i'f4 J:t.e7 37 can freely build up a kingside attack; note
..id3 h5 38 'i'g5?? l:t.d7 ! 39 i.b5 J:t.d 1 40 that Black has much less pressure on eS
'i'f4 'i'g1 + 41 'ith3 l:te1 0-1 without the bishop on g7) 1 2 eS lt::ld7 (or

32
5 i. d3 lD f6 6 0 - 0 c 7 7 e 2 d6

1 2... dxe5 1 3 fxe5 lLld7 14 i.f4!) 1 3 exd6


i.xd6 1 4 lLle4 1l..e 7 1 5 b3! c5 1 6 1l..b 2 i.b7
17 f5! exf5 1 8 .l:txf5 and White's pieces
point ominously towards the kingside, Ryt
shagov-Hellsten, Asker 1 997.
b) 10 ... b6 (I can find no games with this
move, which is hardly surprising as it looks
very risky at best) and now:
b1) 1 1 i.d2 i.b7 1 2 .l:tae1 lLlc6! (if Black
still has the option, ...lLlc6 is often very ef
fective against i.d2, .l:tae1 plans as it leaves
the d7-square available for the other knight;
of course, Black is often already committed
to playing ...ltJbd7) 13 lLlxc6 11..xc6 looks c21) 1 4...'tlr'xe5 is less effective here than
okay for Black. Note that 14 lLld5? doesn't in the note 'e3' to Black's 1 3th move: 1 5
work here: 14 ... exd5 15 exd5 i.d7 16 'tlr'xe7 'tlr'xe5 lLlxe5 1 6 .l:txe5 .l:tad8 1 7 lLlce2 i.c5
.l:tae8 and the queen is trapped. (17 ... lLlg4 18 .l:th5 g6 19 .l:th3 i.cS 20 .l:tf4!
b2) 1 1 e5! (why not?) 1 1 ... dxe5 1 2 fxe5 h5 21 b4 and White wins) 1 8 i.c3 lLld7 1 9
lLlfd7 13 i.f4! (13 'tlr'e4?! wins a rook but .l:txc5 lLlxc5 20 i.c2 and White's two pieces
after 13 ... g6 14 'tlr'xa8? i.b7 15 'tlr'a7 i.c5 1 6 outweigh the rook and pawn.
i.e3 i.xd4 1 7 i.xd4 lLlc6 White's queen is c22) 1 4... i.c5! 1 5 .l:tf4! (15 exf6 i.xd4+
trapped; this resource is definitely worth 16 'it>h 1 lLlxf6 gives White nothing).
remembering) 1 3 ... i.b7 1 4 lLle4 and White's
pieces flood into the centre. Black already
has to watch out for ideas such as lLlf6+,
while 14 ...lLlxe5 15 'tlr'h5 f5 1 6 lLlxe6 looks
very dangerous.
c) 10 ...lLlbd7 is the most sensible move;
Black prevents e4-e5 for the time being: 1 1
i.d2 b6 1 2 l:he1 (renewing the idea o f e4-
e5) with a further split:
c1) 12 ... .l:td8!? provides an antidote
against e4-e5; 13 e5? dxe5 1 4 fxe5 'tlr'xe5 1 5
'tlr'xe5 lLlxe5 leaves the d4-knight e n prise;
this is a common resource for Black. White
can transpose into the main game with 1 3 In this position both sides must tread ex
'it>h1 i.b7, when Black has already commit tremely carefully:
ted his f8-rook to d8. c221) 1 5 ...lLle8 is 'safe' but not the way
c2) 1 2 ...i.b7 to play; it does nothing to oppose White's
attack. After 1 6 lLla4 White has a clear plus.
see following diagram
c222) 15 ... 'tlr'xe5 16 'tlr'xe5 lLlxe5 17 .l:txe5
1 3 e5!? (fhis is absolutely critical, al .l:tad8 1 8 lLlce2 lLld7 19 ne3 e5 20 .l:th4 g6
though I can find no games from this posi 21 lLlb3 f5 22 g3! and White is better.
tion! 13 'it>h 1 would transpose into the main c223) 1 5 ...l::. fd8 16 exf6 lLlxf6 17 i.e3 (17
game.) 13 ... dxe5 14 fxe5 and now we have 'tli'f2 e5 18 nxf6 .l:txd4! is good for Black)
the following: 1 7 ...e5 1 8 l::.x f6 exd4 1 9 lLld5! 'tlr'e5! (other

33
Sicilian Ka n

moves lose: 1 9 ... j_xd5 20 j_f4 d7 21 h5 It's important for Black to know how to
h6 22 cxd5 gxf6 23 xh6, or 1 9 ...l:txd5 20 react to the hyper-aggressive 1 2 g4!?, despite
j_f4 'iid7 21 cxd5 gxf6 22 'iih5) 20 l:tf5 the fact that I can find hardly any games
l:txd5! 21 cxd5 'iix e3+ 22 ft g6 and Black with this move.
has a pawn and reasonable compensation
for the exchange.
c224) 1 5 ...l:tad8 (there are some small
differences if Black chooses this rook) 1 6
exf6 ttJxf6 1 7 j_e3 e 5 1 8 l:txf6 exd4 1 9
ttJd5! e5! ( 1 9. . .j_xd5 2 0 j.h6! j_e6 2 1
j_xg7! xg7 22 'iih 5 xf6 23 'iih4+ g7
24 'iix h7+ f6 25 'iih 4+ g7 26 'iig 5+
h8 27 h6+ g8 28 h7 is mate;
19 ... l:txd5 20 j_h6! l:te5! 21 'iixe5 'iix e5 22
l:txe5 gxf6 23 l:txc5 bxc5 24 j_xh7+ xh7
25 j_xf8 d3 26 2 j_xg2 27 j_xc5 i.e4 28
j_e3 f5 29 b4 is probably a winning ending
for White) 20 j_xh7+!? (20 l:tf5 l:txd5 21 Black always has to be careful of the g2-
cxd5 'iix e3+ is again unclear) 20 ... xh7 21 g4-g5 thrust. This is even more dangerous if
d3+ g8 22 i.d2 l:txd5 23 l:txe5 l:txe5 Black is already committed to ...ttJbd7 so
and this is still difficult to assess - Black has that the d7-square is not vacant for a ... t2Jf6-
quite good compensation for the queen. d7 retreat. Deprived of this square, the
Crazy sruff, but it hammers home one knight may have to do with the inferior e8
point: Black must be very well prepared and square, from where it is far less influential.
resourceful against these quick-fire attacks Black's choices are:
from White. White's 'gain' of a tempo by a) 12 ... d5? 13 cxd5 exd5 1 4 e5! with a
avoiding g1 -h1 very much raises the clear plus for White.
stakes - one small mistake from either side b) 12 ... ttJc5 13 j.b1 j.b7 14 g5 tDe8
could prove to be devastating. (14...ttJfd7 loses a piece to 15 b4; this is the
Generally in the i.d3 lines White aims problem with having both knights on the
for an attack on the king, but it should be same circuit) 1 5 f5 exf5 (or 1 5 ...e5 16 ttJf3
pointed out that White can also adopt the b5 1 7 tiJd5 j_xd5 1 8 cxd5) 1 6 ttJxf5 j_d8
anti-Hedgehog set-up with, for example, 10 17 ttJd5 i.xd5 18 exd5 and White has
j_e3 tiJbd7 11 l:tacl b6 1 2 f3 j.b7 1 3 l:tfd1 strong pressure on the kingside, Pallova
l:tac8. This position is more often reached Palkova, Chrudim 1 994.
via 5 c4 and will be discussed in Chapter 9. c) 12 ... h6!? 13 h4 (13 g5 hxg5 14 fxg5
1 0 . . . b6 1 1 f4 lLlbd7 tDe8 1 5 g6 tDe5 1 6 gxf7 + t2Jxf7 is okay for
More sensible than 1 1 ...j.b7, which al Black) and now:
lows 12 e5!. cl) 13 ...ttJc5 1 4 i.c2 e5 (or 14 ... j.b7 1 5
1 2 i.d2 g5 hxg5 1 6 hxg5 tiJh7 1 7 l:t2, followed by
For 12 b3, see Game 10. l:th2) 1 5 tiJf5 i.xf5 1 6 gxf5 and again the
The immediate 12 f5 is answered simply strucrure favours White.
by 1 2 ...ttJe5!. I n general White should wait c2) 13 ... h5! (it's worth sacrificing the h
for Black to commit himself to ...j_b7 be pawn to negate White's kingside charge) 1 4
fore playing f4-f5, so that the light-squared gxh5 ttJc5 1 5 h 6 g6! looks okay for Black.
bishop no longer defends e6. d) 12 ... g6! (this looks best) 13 g5 ttJh5 1 4

34
5 .1L d 3 ti'J f6 6 0 - 0 c 7 7 e 2 d 6

fS lLleS 1 5 f6 .i.dS and Black can be happy. lLlxd3 1 6 'ifxd3 nfcS! 1 7 lLlxe6 'ifxc4 is
The bishop is misplaced on dS but both good for Black) 15 ... a5 (giving away the bS
knights are on strong outposts. White's squarc but b2-b4 had to be prevented) 1 6
pawns on f6 and gS look awesome but it's b3 :res 1 7 a3 .i.f8 t S b 4 axb4 1 9 axb4 lLla6
very difficult for White to make progress 20 .i.a4 :e7 21 .l:tabt and Black was some
and indeed Black could eventually try to what uncomfortable in Kudrin-Bakhtadzc,
dismantle them with a timely ... h7-h6. Ycrcvan 1 996.
12 . . . b7 If Black cannot improve in the above
I f Black is concerned about White's pos lines, then it may well be that 1 3 fS is
sibility in the next note and doesn't mind stronger than the 'automatic' 1 3 :ac t . Food
transposing into note 'e' to Black's 13th for thought!
move, then he could employ the move or 1 3 . . . l:tfd8
der 1 2 ... .:.cs, answering 1 3 fS with 13 ....i.f8! Black's rook indirectly hits the knight on
keeping the structure intact. d4 and thus prevents e4-e5 for the moment.
1 3 l:tae 1 Also, the f8-square is vacated in case of
... .i.f8 or ... lLlf8. However, there arc cer
tainly other options for Black:
a) 13 .. JhcS (this move is too routine) 1 4
cS! lL:lcS (Vehi Bach-Raurell Bernada, Olot
1 992) and now Zeller's suggestion of 15 b3
keeps White ahead - the knight on eS is a
poor p1ece.
b) 13 ... 'ifc5?!, with the idea of 14 lL:lb3
'ifhS, looks very risky - the black queen is
committed to hS and is lacking safe squares,
assuming White avoids an exchange of
queens.
c) 13 ... g6 14 fS! (14 cS lLlhS looks okay
This is White's most aggressive set-up. for Black) 14 ... exf5 1 5 exfS lL:leS 1 6 .i.gS
Note that the bishop is better placed on d2 'ii'd S 1 7 .i.xf6 .i.xf6 t S .i.e4 .i.xc4 1 9 'ifxc4
rather than e3 as it doesn't obstruct White's and White has an excellent outpost for the
major pieces on the c-fJ..!e. It seems that the knight on dS, Luther-Perdomo, Cali 2000.
threat is very much e4-e5, or is it? Sec note d) 13 ...:adS (Black wants to follow up
'c' to Black's 1 3th move. with ....:.feS and ....i.f8) 14 fS! eS (1 4...lL:lc5
As an alternative, attacking with 13 fS!? 15 fxe6 fxe6 1 6 .i.c2 aS 17 a3! is good for
certainly springs to mind, especially as Black White) 1 5 lLlc2 lL:lcS (1 5 ... b5 is a sacrificial
doesn't have time to defend e6 with ... :reS suggestion from Zeller; after 1 6 cxbS axbS
and ....i.f8 (or ...:aeS and ....i.dS). Black can 17 lLlxbS 'ifbS t S lL:lc3 lL:lcS 19 lL:lb4 I don't
continue with: believe Black has enough for the pawn) 1 6
a) 13 ...e5 14 lLlc2 lL:lcS (14...b5 1 5 cxbS lLle3 b S 1 7 lL:ledS lLlxdS t S lLlxdS .i.xdS 1 9
axbS 1 6 lLlxbS doesn't give Black anything cxdS is similar to note 'a' to White's 1 3th
like what he needs for the pawn) 1 5 lLle3 bS move - White has a pleasant space advan
16 lLledS .i.xdS 17 lLlxdS lLlxdS l S cxdS tage.
gives White a nice space advantage, Milos e) 1 3 ...:fcS!? looks suicidal, but is it
Zapata, Bogota 1 992. really so straightforward? White has the
b) 13 ... lL:lc5 14 fxc6 fxe6 15 .i.c2! (15 b4? following possibilities:

35
Sicilian Kan

e1) 1 4 fS can be answered by 1 4... 8!, this line.


keeping the structure intact. 1 4 ll'lf3
e2) White should consider the rook lift Preparing e4-eS or ltJO-gS. Alternatively:
1 4 no, for example 1 4... nadS (or 1 4...g6 1 S a) 1 4 b4 (expanding on the queenside
ng3 .:adS 1 6 fS f8) 1 S nh3 .tf8 1 6 ltJO and preventing ...lDcS) and now:
g6 17 lDgS lDcS (or 17. ..g7!? 1S eS dxeS a 1) 1 4...g6?! 1 S fS! exfS (1S ...ltJf8 16 fxe6
19 fxeS 'il'xeS 20 'il'xeS lDxeS 21 :xeS h6!) fxe6 1 7 lDxe6! lDxe6 1 S ltJdS i.xdS 1 9 exdS
1 S i.c2 h6 19 eS!? led to great complica and Black can already resign) 16 exfS looks
tions in Toth-Trincado, Mar del Plata 1 990. dangerous for Black, Adla-Paramos Dom
e3) 1 4 eS (Of course! Doesn't this just inguez, Mondariz 1 994.
win a piece?) 14 ... dxeS 1 S fxeS 'il'xeS! 1 6 a2) I believe Black should play 14 ... i. f8!.
'il'xeS lDxeS 1 7 :xeS .:adS Now he is ready to play 1S ...g6, meeting 1 6
fS with 1 6. . .:es!.
b) I can find no examples of 14 nO!? pre
paring to swing the rook: 14 ... .tf8 1 S nh3
g6 16 fS and again Black should retract with
1 6 ... neS! to keep the structure intact.
1 4 . . . g6
So that Black can answer 1 S eS with
1 S ... lL:!hS 16 i.e4 (or 1 6 g4 lL:!g7 17 i.e4
i.xe4 1S 'il'xe4 ltJcS) 16 ... i.xe4 17 'il'xe4
lDcS 1 S 'il'e2 :acS and Black is fine.
1 5 lt'lg5 fS
1 S ... h6 also looks playable: 16 lDO (hav
ing provoked a slight weakness, the knight
(White is a piece for a pawn up but is returns; 1 6 lDxf7 'li;xf7 1 7 eS dxeS 1 S fxeS
well and truly skewered on the d-file!) 1 S lL:!xeS looks unsound) 16 ... .tf8 17 nc1 .tg7
lDce2 lL:!g4 1 9 nhs g6 20 nh3 i.cS! and 1 S i.b 1 :acS 1 9 b3 'il'bS (Kudrin-Dzindzi
now, instead of 20 ... eS? 21 lDb3 which is chashvili, Philadelphia 1 992) and here White
winning for White (Zeller), Black should should push on with 20 fS. In view of this, I
play 21 ...i.cS!: prefer the prophylactic 1 9 ...:eS!.
e31) 21 ng3 lL:!eS 22 i.b1 (22 gS?! 1 6 'ii'f 2 g7 1 7 'ii'g 3 lt'lc5 1 8 c2
i.xd4 23 i.xdS nxdS 24 b3 cS 2S lDf4 fS
26 h3 'li;f7 27 .tb 1 nd2 and White was in
some trouble in the game H.Hunt-Ahrens,
Bratislava 1 993) i.xd4 23 lL:!xd4 nxd4 24
i.c3 :edS 2S i.xd4 nxd4 and Black has
excellent compensation for the slight mate
rial disadvantage.
e32) 21 nf4 hS (or 21 ...fS!?) 22 lDb3 eS
23 :n lDf2+ 24 nxf2 i.xf2 and I prefer
Black's rook and pawn over the two
knights.
If the above analysis in note 'e' holds up,
then both 1 2...:es and 13 ... nfeS are of
substantial importance in the assessment of 1 8 . . . d5?

36
5 d3 f:D f6 6 0 - 0 c 7 7 e 2 d 6

Right idea, wrong timing. Stronger is Again w e see the queenside fianchetto
1 8 ... h6 1 9 lL\f3 and only then 1 9 ... d5!. I f from White. I believe it's more dangerous
anything, I then prefer Black. here than against ...g6 and ... ..tg7; Black will
19 cxd5 exd5 20 e5 f?Jfe4 21 f?Jcxe4 find it more difficult to arrange a successful
f?Jxe4 22 .i.xe4 dxe4 23 .i.c3 l:td3 ... e6-e5 break against f2-f4.
After this Black is a pawn down with no 1 2 l:tad1
compensation, but following 23 ...'ir'c4 Once more the most aggressive plan is
White can play 24 fS!, for example 24... h6 12 f4 ..tb7 13 .U.ael and now:
25 lLlxf7! 'ir'xf7 26 e6 'ir'e8 27 ..txg7 xg7 a) 13. .. .l:tad8 14 fS!? (1 4 hl l:tfe8! 1 5
28 f6+ h8 29 'ir'c7. ..tbt ..tf8 1 6 lLlf3 g6 1 7 e S lLlhS 1 8 lLlgS
24 h4 h6 25 f?Jxe4 c6 26 f2 l:tad8 ..tg7 was okay for Black in Soylu-Cebalo,
27 f?Jd6 .i.a8 28 f5 g5 29 f6 .i.f8 30 Budva 1 981) with a further split:
lLlf5 l:te8 31 e6 l:txe6 32 lLle7 + .i.xe7 a 1) 14 ...lLlc5 1 5 fxe6 fxe6 16 ..tc2 aS
33 fxe7 f5 34 l:txe6 xe6 35 xf5 1 -0 (1 6 ... ..tc8 17 b4 lLlb7 18 ..tb3) 17 a3!, in
tending b3-b4, is uncomfortable for Black.
Game 10 a2) 1 4 ...e5 1 5 lLlc2 bS! (a suggestion from
Plachetka-Ravikumar Zeller; this sacrifice works quite well here)
Pofitiken Cup, Copenhagen 1980 1 6 cxbS axbS 1 7 b4 (17 lLlxbS? 'ir'b6+ 1 8
'------- ht lLlcS is good for Black) 1 7 ... d5 1 8 exdS
1 e4 c5 2 f?Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 f?Jxd4 a6 lLlxdS 19 lLlxdS ..txdS 20 ..txbS 'ir'a7+ 21
5 d3 f?Jf6 6 0-0 c7 7 e2 d6 8 c4 'ir'f2 'ir'xa2 22 ..txeS lLlxeS 23 l:txeS ..tf6
e7 9 b3 and Black's bishop pair provide good com
This is the most accurate move order for pensation for the pawn.
White to reach the position after the 12th b) 1 3. .. g6 14 eS (14 fS exfS 1 5 exfS lL\eS
move. Instead 9 lL\c3 0-0 10 b3 allows Black 16 ..te4 lLlxe4 1 7 lLlxe4 l:tfe8 18 'ir'd2 ..txe4
to play 10 ...b5!, exploiting the undefended 19 l:txe4 ..tf8 was level in Zapata-Blanco
knight on c3: 1 1 ..tb2 b4 t 2 lLlbt lLlbd7 13 Fernandez, Matanzas 1 995) 14 ...lLlh5! 1 5
lLld2 ..tb7 1 4 l:tael lLlcS and White cannot fS?! dxeS (Erdogdu-Mastrovasilis, Antalya
shift the powerful knight on cS. 2001) 1 6 fxe6 lLlc5!
9 . . .0-0 10 b2 f?Jbd7 1 1 f?Jc3
The alternative knight development with
1 1 lLld2 can be seen in Game 1 1 .
1 1 . . . b6

and I believe the complications favour


Black: 17 exf7+ l:txf7 1 8 l:txf7 xf7 1 9 lLlf3
lLlf4 20 "i!VxeS (20 lLlxeS+ g8 21 'ir'c2
..td6!) 20... ..td6 21 'ir'd4 lLlcxd3 22 liJbS

37
Sicilian Kan

i.cS!. 20 .l:!.xf7! 'it>xf7 21 'i!fxg4 g6


1 2 . . . i.b7 2t ...lbxe5 22 hS+ (Plachetka) 22 ... lbg6
To include other possibilities I've again 23 lbe4 gives White a winning attack.
fiddled with the move order. The actual 22 liJe4 liJc5 23 liJf6 .l:!.ed8 24 .l:!.f 1 'it>g7
sequence was 6 ... d6 7 c4 i.e7 8 lbc3 0-0 9 25 liJxh7 liJd3
b3 b6 10 i.b2 i.b7 1 1 e2 lDbd7 1 2 :ad1 Or 25 ...'it>xh7 26 i.xg6+ 'it>h8 27 hS+
c7. 'it>g8 28 i. f7 +.
1 3 i. b 1 .I::Ue 8 1 4 f4 .l:!.ac8?! 26 liJxf8 l:bf8 27 .l:!.xf8 l:!.xf8 28 i.xd3
Funnily enough, Black's best plan is to 'i!ff7 29 h4 .l:!.d8 30 i.e4 .l:f.d2 31 i.c1
concede a tempo or two and fianchetto the 'i!ff1 + 32 'it>h2 'i!fxc1 33 'i!Vxg6 + 'it>f8 34
dark-squared bishop in any case! This leads 'i!ff6 + g8 35 'i!fxe6 + 'it>g7 36 'ilff6 +
to positions similar to Game 8, although of 'it>g8 37 e6 1 -0
course the lost tempi mean it's not such a
good version: 14 ... i.f8! 1 5 'it>h 1 g6! 1 6 lbf3 Game l !
:adS 17 lbgS i.g7 1 8 :d2 h6 1 9 lbh3 lbcs Csoke-Lehoczki
and Black had arranged a successful defen Hungarian League 1998
sive formation, Granda Zuniga-Milov, Vil
larrobledo (rapid) 1 997. 1 e4 c5 2 liJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 liJxd4 a6
1 5 liJf3 i.f8 1 6 'it>h 1 i.c6? 5 i.d3 liJf6 6 0-0 'i!fc7 7 'i!fe2 d6 8 c4
Now 16 ...g6 really was vital. i.e 7 9 b3 0-0 1 0 i.b2 liJbd7 1 1 liJd2
1 7 e5! 1 1 f4 b6 1 2 lbd2 will transpose, but note
This advance is very strong here. Black can that 1 1 ...:e8? 12 lbxe6! fxe6 13 eS l:tf8 1 4
not resist White's forthcoming attack. exf6 lDxf6 1 5 lDd2 led t o a clear advantage
1 7 . . . i.xf3 1 8 .l:!.xf3 dxe5 1 9 fxe5 for White in Moiseev-Cvitan, Sibenik 1 988.
This is a trick worth remembering.
1 1 . . .b6 1 2 f4 i.b7
The actual move order of the game was 9
f4 lbbd7 10 b3 b6 1 1 i.b2 i.b7 1 2 lDd2
0-0.
1 3 l:!.ae 1

1 9 . . .liJg4
Or:
a) 19 ... xe5 20 lbe4 aS (20 ... c7 21
lDxf6+ lDxf6 22 l:.xf6! gxf6 23 g4+ i.g7
24 i.xf6 wins - Plachetka) 21 i.c3 a3 22
lbxf6+ lbxf6 23 c2 i.e7 24 b4 llxc4 25
i.xf6 :xc2 26 :xa3 and White wins. With the knight o n d 2 the presence o f
b) 19 ... lbxe5 20 lDbS! axbS 21 i.xeS e7 the b2-bishop is felt more - there i s only
22 c2 and White wins - Plachetka. one knight blocking it. On the other hand,

38
5 i. d 3 li:::. f6 6 0 - 0 'ii c 7 7 'ii e 2 d 6

White has less conttol over the d5-square. I f i. b 1 , but this i s critical.
Black can arrange a favourable ... e6-e5 he 1 4 . . . dxe5 1 5 l'i:::. x e6!
does not have to worry about tLld5 ideas. 15 fxe5 'ilfxe5! 16 'ilfxe5 tLlxe5 17 l:txe5
1 3 . . J:!.fd8 i.c5 18 l:tf4 tLld7! (Moiseev) and Black will
Again aimed at the advance e4-e5. On regain the piece with ... e6-e5.
this occasion the knight on d4 is protected, 1 5 . . . fxe6 1 6 fxe5
but Black can still use tactics to disarm
White's thrust. Other possibilities include:
a) 13 ... e5?! 14 tLlf5 l:tfe8 15 g4 tLlc5
(1 5 ...'ilfc5+? 1 6 'it>hl i.f8 17 g5 exf4 1 8
l:txf4 g6 [Moiseev-Vasiukov, Sibenik 1 988]
19 gxf6 gxf5 20 l:tg1 + 'it>h8 21 'ilfh5 and
Black will be very quickly mated, for exam
ple 21...tLle5 22 'ilfxh7+ 'it>xh7 23 l:th4+
i.h6 24 l:tg7+ 'it>h8 25 l:txh6 mate) 16 g5
tLlfd7 17 tLlxe 7+ l:txe7 1 8 f5 f6 19 h4 and
White has a sttong bind on the position,
Anka-Csoke, Hungarian League 1 994.
b) 13 ... g6!? (making the h5-square avail
able) 1 4 e5 tLlh5 1 5 i.e4 (15 f5 dxe5 1 6 fxe6 1 6 . . . l'i:::. c 5?!
i.c5! 17 exd7? 'ilfxd7 1 8 'ifxe5 l:tae8! is Black returns the piece and accepts a
winning for Black) 1 5 ... tLlc5 1 6 i.xb7 'ilfxb7 slight disadvantage. However, I can't find
(Zeller) and Black can be reasonably happy anything wrong with 1 6 ... tLle8! here.
with his position. a) Moiseev gives 17 'ili'h5 but then Black
c) 13 ...l:tad8 14 e5?! (White should play has the clever defence 1 7 ...tLldf6! 1 8 exf6
more quietly with 1 4 i.b 1 or 1 4 'it>h 1 , al 'ilfc5+ 1 9 'ifxc5 (19 l:tf2 'ilfxh5 20 fxe7 tLlf6
though this then gives Black the chance to 21 exd8'if+ l:f.xd8 is good for Black)
play ... g7 -g6) 14 ... dxe5 1 5 fxe5 'ilfxe5! 1 6 1 9 ...i.xc5+ 20 'it>h 1 tLlxf6 21 i.e4 tLlxe4 22
'ilfxe5 tLlxe5 1 7 l:txe5 i.c5 1 8 l:tf4 tLld7 1 9 tLlxe4 i.xe4 23 l:txe4 l:td2 with a better
l:th5 g 6 20 l:th3 e 5 21 l:tfh4 tLlf6 was good ending for Black.
for Black in Szieberth-Izsak, Budapest 1995. b) 17 i.xh7+ ! 'it>xh7 1 8 'ilfh5+ 'it>g8 1 9
'ilff7+ 'it>h7 looks best, but White has no
more than a perpetual check.
An earlier game saw 1 6 ... tLlxe5?! 1 7 i.xe5
'ilfd7 (Moiseev-Vyzmanavin, USSR 1 989)
and now 1 8 i.e4! (Vyzmanavin) 1 8...tLlxe4
1 9 tLlxe4 i.xe4 20 'ilfxe4 leaves White with
an advantage due to Black's weak e6-pawn.
1 7 exf6 l:ixd3 1 8 fxe 7
After 1 8 f7+ Black plays 1 8 ...'it>f8!, but
not 1 8 ... 'it>h8? 19 'ili'g4 i.f8 20 'ilfxg7+!.
1 8 . . . 'iix e7 1 9 b 4 .:adS 2 0 i.c1
So far the players had been following
analysis from Moiseev, who assessed this
14 e5!? position as slightly better for White. This is
Again White can play with 1 4 'it>h1 or 1 4 correct - White reaches an ending with

39
Sicilian Kan

some chances to convert an extra pawn. In moves include:


this game White actually loses his pawn
advantage but ends up winning anyway after
some inaccurate play from Black.

a) 9 lL'lc3 lL'le5!? (9 ... g6 10 l:td1 i.g7 1 1


tt:'lf3 0-0 1 2 .i.f4 transposes to Game 5; for
9 ... b6 1 0 f4 .i.e7 see the note to Black's 9th
20 . . . ltJa4 21 'ii'x e6 + 'ii'x e6 22 xe6 move) 10 'ith1 .i.e7 1 1 f4 tt:'lxd3 12 xd3
c3 23 .l:!.e7 .l:!.f8 24 l:txb7 l:txf1 + 25 0-0 13 b3 b6 14 .i.b2 i.b7 1 5 l:tae1 l:tad8
lt>xf1 .l:l.xc1 + 26 lt>e2 .l:!.c2 27 lt>e3 .l:!.xa2 16 'ir'g3 l:tfe8 occurred in Gavrilakis
28 .l:l.a7 .l:l.b2 29 .l:!.xa6 l:txb4 30 ltJe4 Velikov, Kavala 1 990. This defensive set-up
ltJc5 3 1 .l:l.a8 + f7 32 .l:!.a7 + lt>g6 33 looks quite satisfactory for Black. The ex
ltJd6 l:tb3 + 34 'it>f4 l:lb2 35 ltJe8 f2 + change of the knight for White's light
36 lt>e3 l:f7 37 l:xf7 'it>xf7 38 ltJc7 ltJd7 squared bishop seems to dull White's at
39 lt>d4 lLlf6 40 h3 h6 41 ltJa8 ltJd7 42 tacking chances. The game continued 1 7
lt>d5 lt>e7 43 c6 ltJe5 + 44 lt>b5 lt>f6 l:te3 d7 1 8 e1 g6 1 9 f5?! tt:'lg4 20 f6?
45 ltJxb6 lt>f5 46 c5 lt>f4 4 7 ltJc4 ltJg6 .i.xf6 21 l:txf6 tt:'lxf6 22 h4 e7 23 l:th3
48 c6 ltJe7 49 c7 'iti>g3 50 ltJb6 lt>xg2 5 1 tt:'lh5 and Black went on to win.
lt>c5 lt>xh3 52 lt>d6 g 5 5 3 lt>xe7 1 -0 b) 9 b3 g6! (as we already know, the king
side fianchetto works well against White's
Game 12 queenside fianchetto) 10 i.b2 .i.g7 1 1 tt:'lc3
Sandor-Chernuschevich 0-0 transposes to Game 8.
Poznan 1995 9 . . . g6!?
Now White has committed himself to
1 e4 c5 2 ltJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ltJxd4 a6 playing f2-f4, Black logically goes for a king
5 .i.d3 ltJf6 6 0-0 'ii'c 7 7 'ii'e 2 d6 8 c4 side fianchetto. By now we know that this
ltJbd7 ! ? defensive set-up works well against a king
A flexible move. Black waits t o see how side storm. However, on this particular oc
White plays it before deciding whether to casion Black has problems with the defence
fianchetto or not. In some cases Black can of e6 due to the early development of the
also play an early ... lbe5 or possibly ... tt:'lc5 d7-knight. If White proceeds energetically
instead. then Black cannot keep his pawn structure
9 f4! intact.
By playing f2-f4 immediately, White cuts 9 ... h5!? is a very ambitious move cham
out any early ... tt:'le5 ideas for Black. I think pioned by the German IM Karl Heinz Pod
this is White's strongest move order. Other zielny.

40
5 i. d3 tiJ f6 6 0 - 0 c 7 7 e 2 d 6

exdS l S exdS 0-0 1 6 'ii'xe7 l:.ae8 wins for


Black - Zeller; 1 4 fS allows Black to dem
onstrate a point of ...g7 -g6: 14 ...gxfS! l S
exfS e S 1 6 ltJb3 h4 and Black aims for
counterplay against g2) 1 4 ... dxeS l S fxeS
lt:\g4 16 tLlxe6!? (16 ..if4 is less ambitious)
16 ... fxe6 17 i.xg6+ 'it>d8 18 i.f4 (Zeller)
with a very unclear position. White has two
pawns and Black's king is not safe. On the
other hand, Black is a piece ahead and is
quite active himself.
a2) I prefer the move 1 2 fS!, for example
1 2...eS (or 12 ...ltJcS 13 fxe6 fxe6 14 ..ic2 aS
10 'it>h 1 ! (10 b3 'ii'b6! 1 1 i.e3 lt:\g4 l S lt:\a4!) 13 lt:\c2 ltJcS 14 lt:\e3 looks better
shows a point of Black's 9th move: 1 2 lt:\c3 for White - compare to the note to White's
g6 1 3 l:.adl lt:\xe3 1 4 'ii'xe3 i.g7 and Black 1 3th move in Game 9.
was fine in Leko-Podzielny, Dortmund b) 1 1 i.d2 (again White does without the
1991) 10 ... b6 1 1 lt:\c3 i.b7 12 fS! lt:\cs 'safe but lazy' 'it>h 1) l l ...i.b7 1 2 l:.ae1 l:.d8?
(12... eS 13 ltJdS ltJxdS 14 exdS ltJf6 l S ltJf3
h4 16 ltJgS i.e7 17 i.e3 ltJd7 18 lt:\e4 left
White with a massive knight on e4,
Z.Szabo-Lehoczki, Solymar 1 996) 13 i.c2
exfS 14 ltJdS i.xdS l S exdS+ 'ii'e7 1 6
'ii'x e7+ 'it>xe7 1 7 i.gS and White has a terri
fic ending, Quinteros-Debarnot, Sao Paulo
1 972.
9 ...i.e7 10 lt:\c3 b6 could transpose into
lines considered earlier on in the chapter,
but let's see what happens if Black delays
castling:
a) 1 1 'it>h 1 is important because it can be
reached by transposition from lines where (Black should play 12 ... 0-0, transposing
White plays a very early 'it>h 1 : l l .. . ..ib7 and to note 'c2' to White's 1 0th move in Game
now: 9, or 1 2 ...g6; 1 2...l:.d8 prevents e4-eS but...)
al) 1 2 i.d2 g6!? (12... 0-0 transposes to 13 ltJdS!! exdS 14 exdS 0-0 (14 ...ltJcS l S
Game 9) with a further split: ..ic2 l:.d7 1 6 b4!) l S ltJfS! and the rook on
al l) 13 l:tacl hS! (a Podzielny speciality; d8 is a real liability - the e7-bishop cannot
possible ideas include ... hS-h4, followed by escape: 1 S ...l:.fe8 16 lt:\xe 7+ 'it>f8 17 l:.f3!
...ltJhS-g3+ or simply ... h4-h3) 1 4 b4 h4 l S lt:\g4 (17 ...lt:\cs 1 8 .U.e3 l:td7 19 lt:\g6+! -
a3 l:tc8 1 6 .U.cel 'ii'b 8 1 7 ..icl b S 1 8 ..ib2 Zeller) 1 8 h3 ltJdf6 1 9 hxg4 lt:\xg4 20 l:.h3
bxc4 1 9 i.xc4 'ii'a8 20 ltJf3 h3 21 g3 0-0 22 and White won in Fogarasi-Erdelyi, Switzer
..id3 aS! 23 bS tLlcS and Black was doing land 1 992.
well in Siemes-Podzielny, correspondence 1 0 f5!
1 998. It's critical that White plays this now be
a12) 13 l:tael (this looks more consistent fore Black has a chance to play ...i.g7 to
than 13 l:.acl) 13. .. hS!? 14 eS (14 ltJdS? defend f6. After 10 lt:\c3?! i.g7 1 1 fS Black

41
Sicilian Kan

keeps the order with 1 1 ...lDeS!. 32 'i'b4 .i.c6 33 .l::.g4 i.g5 34 i.xc6 +
.l::.x c6 35 'i'xb7 'i'c2 36 'i'b8 + 'it>e7 37
.l::.f 1 'i'c5 + 38 'it>g2 .l::.c 8 39 'i'b7 + .l::. c 7
40 'i'f3 h6 4 1 h4 1 -0

Game 13
Schlosser-Vyzmanavin
Sochi 1989

1 e4 c5 2 tt'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt'lxd4 a6


5 .i.d3 'i'c7 6 0-0 tt'lf6 7 'i'e2 d6 8 f4!?

1 0 . . . gxf5?!
1 0...cS looks stronger: 11 lLJc2 il..e 7 12
lLle3 lLJcS 1 3 il..c 2!? (13 lLJc3 looks safe for
an edge) 1 3. .. lLlcxe4!? (13 ...gxfS 1 4 exfS left
White with a solid bind over the dS-square
in Varavin-Tunik, USSR 1 991) 1 4 il..xe4
lLlxe4 1 S lLJdS 'ticS+ 1 6 .ie3 'ii'c6 1 7 f6!
(17 fxg6 hxg6 1 8 il..b 6 il..e 6! as 1 9 lLJc7+
'it>d7 20 lLlxa8 .l:!.xa8 21 'ir'e3 il..gS is winning
for Black) 1 7 ...il..d 8 1 8 'ir'f3 lLJcS 1 9 b4 lLJe6
20 lLld2 and White has good compensation A dangerous move. White delays c2-c4
for the pawn (analysis by Varavin). and waits for Black to commit himself with
l O ... lLJeS? is of course impossible because the f8-bishop. After 8 ...il..e7 White will
of 1 1 fxe6. probably transpose back to normal lines
1 1 exf5 e5 1 2 tt'le6! with 9 c4, but what happens if Black tries to
This idea is worth remembering; Black is fianchetto?
already in some trouble. 8 lLlc3 will be discussed under S lLJc3
1 2 . . .'i!i'c6? 'ii'c 7 6 .id3 lLJf6 7 'iVe2!? d6 in Chapter 6.
More resolute is 1 2... fxe6 13 fxe6 JJ..g7 1 4 One further idea is 8 lLJd2 g6 9 a4!? il..g7
exd7 + il..xd7 1 S lLJc3 il..c 6 (Escobar 10 aS 0-0 1 1 lLJc4 lLJbd7 1 2 c3 dS! 1 3 exdS
Filgueira, Buenos Aires 1 989) although I exdS 1 4 lLle3 lLleS and Black was more than
think White is still doing well after 1 6 .igS!. comfortable in Geller-Vyzmanavin, Mos
1 3 tt'lc3 i.e7 1 4 tt'ld5! fxe6 1 5 fxe6 cow 1 989 - White's pieces are not well
tt'lxd5 1 6 cxd5 'i'xd5 1 7 .i.c4 'i'c6 1 8 placed to battle against the IQP.
exd7 + i.xd7 1 9 i.f7 + 'it>d8 20 i.e3 8 . . . g6! ?
As far as I can see, Black is a pawn up This looks risky, but Black has hidden re
but in total disarray. He does well to last as sources.
long as he does. Note that 8 ...'iVb6?! 9 il..e3 'ii'xb2?? loses
20 . . . .l::.c 8 21 'i'f2 .l::.c 7 22 .i.b6 'i'e4 23 to 10 lLlb3, trapping the black queen.
.l::.fe 1 'i'h4 24 g3 'i'f6 25 'i'c2 .i.c6 26 9 f5!
i.xc7 + 'it>xc7 27 i.d5 'i'g6 28 l:.e4 'it>d7 Direct and dangerous. Black must be
29 'i'b3 .l::. c8 30 .l::. d 1 'it>e8 31 'i'c4 i.d7 careful not to be blown off the board.

42
5 i.. d3 Ci:J f6 6 0 - 0 'fie 7 7 'fl e 2 d 6

1 2...lt:lg4!?. I can only find one example o f


this move, which leads t o immense compli
cations: 13 'i1Vxg4 lt:lxd4

9 . . . i.g7
It's imperative for Black to seek devel
opment. After 9 ...gxf5 10 exfS eS 1 1 c4!
(getting a grip over dS) 1 1 ....ie7 12 lLlc2 and now:
lt:lbd7 1 3 lt:lc3 tLlcS 14 lt:le3 lLlxd3 1 5 'ii'xd3 a) 1 4 .id3 lLlxc2 1 5 .ixc2 (15 .l::tc l?
'ii'c S 1 6 b4! 'ii'xb4 17 lLledS lLlxdS 1 8 lLlxdS lLlxe3 1 6 l:txc7 lLlxg4 1 7 l:txg7 ltJeS! 1 8 .ie2
'ii'c S+ 19 .ie3 Black was already on the lLlf7 and the rook is nicely trapped on g7)
verge of losing, Adorjan-Honfi, Hungarian 1 5 ...11Vxc2 16 lLld2 (16 l:tc1 11Vxb2 17 l:txc8+
Ch. 1 973. 'it>d7!! wins for Black) 16 ...'ii'd3 1 7 'i1Vg3 and
1 0 fxe6 fxe6 1 1 .i.c4 White certainly has some compensation for
With the e6-pawn under pressure, Black the pawn.
already looks to be in some trouble. How b) 14 lt:la3 lLlxc2 1 5 lLlbS!? with a further
ever, he has a tactical trick to ease his diffi split:
culties. b1) 1 5 ...'i*'d7? loses to 16 .ixe6!.
1 1 .ie3 is less dangerous: 1 1 ... 0-0 1 2 b2) 15 ... axb5 16 .ixbS+ .id7 1 7 11Yxe6+
lLld2 .id7! 1 3 .ic4 d S 1 4 .ib3 lLlc6 was '1t>d8 1 8 .igS+ '1t>c8 19 .ixd7+ 11Yxd7 20
level in Fleck-Chuchelov, Germany 2000. 'i*'xd7+ 'it>xd7 21 l:tf7+ 'it>e8 (21 ...'1t>c8? 22
1 1 . . . Ci:Jc6! 1 2 i.e3 l:tcl was good for White in Lind-Astrom,
1 2 lLlxc6 bxc6 1 3 lLlc3 0-0 14 .ib3 aS 1 5 Helsingborg 1 991) 22 l:te 7+ 'it>f8 23 l:tfl +
'it>h1 .ia6! 1 6 .ixe6+ 'it>h8 1 7 .ic4 .ixc4 'it>g8 24 .if6! .ixf6 25 l:txf6.
18 'ii'xc4 lLlxe4 was an early draw in De
graeve-Chuchelov, Bethune 1 999. Let's
continue a few moves: 19 lLlxe4 dS 20 'i1Ve2
l:txf1 + 21 'iiVx fl l:tf8 22 'i1Ve2 l:te8 and, if
anything, Black is better.
The point of Black's previous move is
seen in the line 1 2 lLlxe6? .ixe6 13 .ixe6
ltJd4! 1 4 11Yc4 11Yxc4 1 5 .ixc4 lLlxc2 and
Black wins material.
1 2 . Ci:Jxd4
. .

Of major interest in this line is the fact


that Black can even go onto an immediate
counter-attack here with the enterprising

43
Sicilia n Ka n

Despite the minus piece, White has at Vyzmanavin criticised this move and
least a draw, but maybe more, for example suggested 1 6 ...h8 as an improvement,
25 .. .lha2 (25 ....1:tf8 26 .l:txf8+ xf8 27 assessing the position as unclear.
.l:txb7 can only be good for White) 26 .l:f.xd6 1 7 i.. b 3 .t>h8 1 8 l:!.ad 1 ? !
a8 27 .l:txb7 lLle3 28 .l:f.dd7 lLlg4 29 g3 1 8 i.xg7+ 'itxg7 1 9 e5! dxe5 20 lLlf3
lLle5 30 .l:f.dc7 and White can push the b (Vyzmanavin) gives White a clear edge.
pawn. 1 8 .. . . tt:lf6 1 9 h3
b3) 1 5...'ii'c 6! 16 i.xe6 (16 'ii' f4 .l:tf8 1 7 Now 1 9 e5? can be met by 1 9 ...lLlg4!.
lLlxd6+ d7!) 1 6. . .lLlxe3 1 7 i.f7+ e7 1 8 1 9 . . . e5 20 b6 'ilfb7!
'ii'h 4+ d7 1 9 'ii'h 3+ e7 is a draw by Black has equalised due to the possibility
perpetual, as 1 9 ...lLlf5 looks like a very du of pressurising e4 with ... i.c6.
bious winning attempt. 2 1 lLlf3?
1 3 ..bd4 0-0 1 4 tt:ld2 d7 1 5 c3 21 i.a5!, intending i.b4, is stronger.
On 1 5 e5 Black should play 1 5 ...ltJh5!. 21 . . . i.. c6 22 .:!.xd6 tt:lxe4 23 l:!.xc6
1 5 . . ..tt:lh5 The only move. 23 l::tdd 1 ltJg3 24 .l:tf2
15 ...d5?! is not to be recommended: 16 lLlf5 25 'ii'c5 l::tac8! is winning for Black.
i.xf6 dxc4 1 7 i.xg7 xg7 1 8 l:lxf8 .l:f.xf8 19 23 . . .. 'ilfxc6 24 l:!.d1
'ii'xc4 'ii'xc4 20 lLlxc4 i.c6 21 e5 .l:f.f5 22
.!:tel l::tg5 23 g3 left Black with no compen
sation for the pawn in D.Belov-Hermans,
correspondence 1 998.
16 'ilfe3
1 6 'ii'g4!? i.xd4+ 17 cxd4 lLlg7! defends
the vulnerable e6-pawn and guarantees
Black equality, Nabours-Edwards, corre
spondence 1 9 9 1 .

24 .. . . i.. h 6!
It would have been very easy to miss this
resource. Now Black is clearly better and
goes on to win quite comfortably.
25 'ilfxh6 'ilfxb6 + 26 .t>h2 'ilff6! 27 i.. c 2
'ilff4 + 28 'ilfxf4 l:!.xf4 29 tt:lxe5 l:!.e8 30
tt:lf3 tt:lc5 31 l:td5 tt:la4 32 .t>g3 l:!.f6 33
xa4 bxa4 34 tt:ld4 a3! 35 bxa3 l:!.e3 +
36 .t>g4 .t>g7 37 l:!.d7 + l:!.f7 38 l:!.xf7 +
1 6 . . . b5?! 'it>xf7 39 tt:lb3 l:!.xc3 40 a4 l:!.c2 0-1

44
5 j_ d3 lD f6 6 0 - 0 'ii c 7 7 'ii e 2 d6

Summary
As far as I can see, Games 1 - 5 prove that Black is still very much alive and kicking in 'the
main line'. It's true that White has some dangerous plans, but with expert treatment Black
can hold his own. Of White's alternative plans, I would say that 1 0 i..e 3 (Game 6) has more
chance of keeping an opening edge than either 10 f4 (Game 7) or 9 b3 (Game 8).
Classical development with 8 ..i..e 7 (Games 9- 1 1) has perhaps been unfairly neglected in
.

recent times (perhaps due to some high-proftle losses) and I believe these systems are also
fully playable for Black. It must be added, though, that Black has to be especially careful not
to be mowed down on the kingside in some lines. Special attention to correct move order is
required here.

1 e4 c5 2 lDf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lDxd4 a6 5 .i.d3 lDf6 6 0-0 'ii'c 7 7 'ii'e 2 d6 8 c4 (D)


8 f4 - Game 13
8 . g6
. .

8 ...i..e 7
9 ciJc3 - Game 9
9 b3 0-0 10 i..b2 lt::lb d7
1 1 ciJc3 - Game 1 0; 1 1 ciJd2 - Game 1 1
8 ...ciJbd7 - Game 12.
9 lDc3
9 b3 - Game 8.
9 . . . ..tg7 1 0 l:l.d1
1 0 f4 - Game 7; 10 i..e3 - Game 6
1 0 . . . 0-0 1 1 lDf3 (D) lDc6
1 1 ... ciJbd7 - Game 5
1 2 h3
12 i.. f4 - Game 4
1 2 . . . lDd7 1 3 ..te3
13 i.. f4 - Game 3
1 3 . . . b6
13 ... ciJde5 - Game 2
1 4 l:l.ac 1 (D) - Game 1

8 c4 1 1 ttJf3 14 'nac 1

45
CHAPTER TWO I
5 i.d3 ltJf6 6 0-0 'JJIJc 7 :
Seventh Move Alternatives

1 e4 c5 2 tt:lt3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt:lxd4 a6 5 ..td3 c7 6 0-0 tt:lt6 7 e2 ..tc5!?


5 ..td3 tt:lt6 6 0-0 c7
In this chapter we deal with alternatives
for White to 7 'ir'e2 and alternatives for
Black after 7 'ir'e2.
Black's choices are restricted after 7 'ii'e 2
as he generally feels obliged to do some
thing about the 'threat' of e4-e5. The two
options we shall look at here are 7 ...c5!?
(Game 1 4) and 7...d6!? (Game 1 5).
White's options at move 7 are much less
restricted. The most important of these is
the immediate setting up of the Maroczy
Bind with 7 c4 (Games 1 6- 1 7). Of course
Black can simply comply with 7 ... d6, most This move crops up an awful lot in the
probably transposing at some point to lines Kan (its most popular form is the 5 i.d3
considered in Chapter 1 . However, 131ack .tc5 - see Chapter 4). The idea is to drive
also has the important independent idea of White's knight away from d4 to an 'inferior'
7 .. .'Jc6! and it's this move we shall study square (usually b3) before deciding on
here. where to put the bishop. We will also see
Also in this chapter we shall take a look many examples of a very similar idea involv
at 7 'it>h 1 (Game 1 8) and 7 f4 (Game 1 9), ing ... ifd8-b6 and, after lbb3, simply drop
while less important options for White are ping the queen back to c7.
discussed in the notes to Game 1 9. The only reason this particular move or
der is not more popular is that it allows
Game 14 White to play an early e4-e5, hitting the f6-
Vujanovic-Verdier knight.
Comspondence 2000 8 tt:lb3
In general this is the most popular re
1 e4 c5 2 tt:lt3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt:lxd4 a6 sponse to an early ... i.c5. White regains the

46
5 1J.. d3 li:J f6 6 0 - 0 1Wc 7 : S e v e n th M o v e A lt e r n a tives

tempo lost on moving the knight again by the intention of ltJc4 and preparing to an
attacking the cS-bishop. The downside to swer lO ... bS with 1 1 c4!.
this move is that the knight is slightly less 10 . . . li:Jb4 1 1 i.f4 li:Jxd3
influential on b3 than it is on d4; the advan 1 1 ...ltJ8c6?! 12 ltJ1d2 ltJxd3 13 'tixd3 fS
tage is that it is also much less vulnerable on 1 4 'iWg3 0-0 1 S cS! left Black in an uncom
b3. fortable position in Kudrin-I.Gurevich,
8 e3 gives Black fewer problems. At Philadelphia 1 990 - Black's bishops arc
some point White usually cannot make any finding it hard to breathe. In the game the
progress without offering the exchange of American GM Ilya Gurevich tried to rem
dark-squared bishops and this eases Black's edy the siruation with l S ... bS but after 1 6
defensive task. After 8 ...d6 9 ltJc3 we have cxb6 xb6 1 7 :act 'tib8 1 8 ltJc4 c7 1 9
transposed to a line srudied in Chapter 6. h 4 White maintained a strong positional
B . . . i.a7 bind.
8... e7?! 9 eS! ltJdS 1 0 c4! ltJb4 11 f4 In a later game, Gurevich tried to im
ltJxd3 1 2 'iWxd3 ltJc6 1 3 ltJc3 left Black pas prove on Black's play with 1 1 ...fS!? although
sively placed in Tong Yuanming-I.Gurevich, after 12 ltJ 1 d2 (12 ltJc3 may be even
Singapore 1 990. The game continued stronger; after 12 ... ltJxd3 13 'tixd3 0-0 14
13 ...gS!? 14 g3 hS 1 S h3 h4 16 h2 ltJxeS acl ltJc6 1S fc 1 White is ready to play
17 'iWe2 f6 18 cS! b6 19 cxb6 'iWxb6 20 c4-cS without giving up control of the ciS
xeS fxcS 21 'iWxeS f8 22 ad1 b7 23 square) 1 2...ltJxd3 13 'ii'xd3 0-0 14 cS ltJc6
ltJe4 and Black was left with many weak 1 S ltJc4 ltJe7 1 6 ltJd6 ltJg6 1 7 'iVg3 b6 1 8
nesses. cxb6 xb6 1 9 acl White was better,
9 e5!? Favaro-I.Gurevich, Maringa 1 991 .
The only way to 'punish' Black for his 1 2 11i'xd3 f6
move order. Black has allowed c4-cS and so Black must react quickly or else the eS
White goes ahead. pawn will promise White a continual bind
9 e3 xe3 10 'iWxe3 d6 leads to similar on the position.
lines to those discussed in Chapter 4, as 1 3 11i'f3
does 9 c4 and 9 ltJc3. After 1 3 'ii'g3 Black can hit out with
9 . . li:Jd5 1 0 c4
. 1 3 ...gS! (Gurevich), for example:
a) 14 d2 'ii'x eS 1 S 'ii'x cS fxcS 1 6 xgS
ltJc6 and Black's centre pawns control some
important squares.
b) 14 ltJc3!? d6! (14...gxf4 isn't men
tioned by Gurevich, but 1 S 'ii'g7 f8 16
exf6 ltJc6 1 7 ltJdS! 'ii'd6 1 8 fc 1 , intending
ad 1, looks very dangerous for Black) 1 S
ltJe4 gxf4 and Gurevich assesses this as
unclear. Let's take things a bit further: 1 6
ltJxf6+ Wf7!? 1 7 'ii'xf4 dxeS 1 8 ltJdS+ (18
'ii'h6!?) 18 ...exf4 1 9 ltJxc7 b6 20 ltJxa8 b7
21 ltJc7 l:tc8 22 ltJxe6 Wxc6 23 fcl + Wf7
24 acl ltJd7 and I prefer Black's two bish
White continues to harass the knight. I f ops to the rook and two pawns. Black's
White i s looking for a n alternative way to dark-squared bishop can emerge via b8.
play, I quite like the look of 10 ltJa3!? with 1 3 . . . fxe5 1 4 11i'h5 + g6 1 5 11i'xe5

47
Sicilian K a n

1 5 i.xe5?? d6 wins material for Black. Gurevich assesses this position as slightly
1 5 . . . 'i'xe5 1 6 .txe5 0-0 1 7 lt:\c3 better for White and I agree with this. Po
An improvement over 17 tLl 1 d2 bS 1 8 c5 tentially Black's bishop pair could prove
i.b7 19 i.d6 (Ulibin-I.Gurevich, Santiago useful, but in the short term he has prob
1 990), and now Gurevich gives 1 9 ...l:tc8! 20 lems developing on the queensidc.
a4 b4 as being equal. Black can play ... i.dS 1 9 . . . b5
and can follow up with the manoeuvre Black must try to develop the c8-bishop .
...tLlc6-d8-f7. 20 ac1
After this move Black manages to equal
ise. I prefer 20 c5!?, blocking in Black's
dark-squared bishop.
20 . . . lt:\d4 21 lt:\xd4 .txd4 22 i.a3 f4
23 lt:\d6 b4! 24 xb4 xb2 25 c2
i.g7 26 g3 l:td4 27 i.c5 l:td3 28 l:tb 1
i.e5 29 l:tb6 a5 30 f4 l:txd6! 31 l:txd6
.txd6 32 .txd6 i.a6 Vz - Vz

Game 15
Magomedov-Khouseinov
Dushanbe 1999

1 7 . . . lt:\c6 1 e4 c5 2 lt:\f3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:\xd4 a6


Gurevich considers the pawn sacrifice 5 d3 lt:\f6 6 0-0 'i'c7 7 'i'e2 i.d6! ?
17 ... b5!? but rejects it on account of 18 cxb5
axb5 19 tLlxb5 i.a6 20 a4 (Nunn and Galla
gher stop here, saying that Black doesn't
have enough for the pawn) 20 ... l::t f5
(20...tLlc6 21 i.d6 followed by lLlxa7 [Gure
vich] simply leaves White a pawn up) 21
i.d4. However, I believe that 21 ...i.xb5 22
axb5 l::txb5 is at least okay for Black as
White cannot really exploit the pin on the a
file: 23 tLld2 tLlc6 24 i.c3 d5 and Black will
follow up by moving the aS-rook.
Going back a bit, 20 tLlc7 is also impor
tant: 20 ... i.xf1 (20...tLlc6 21 i.d6 i.xfl 22
l::txfl leads to the same thing) 21 l:txfl tLlc6 A n idealistic move. Black activates his
22 i.d6 (22 lLlxaB?! lLlxe5 23 tLlc7 tLld3 and dark-squared bishop along the h2-b8 diago
Black regains the pawn) 22...l:tab8 nal but on this occasion it walks into a not
(22 ... l:txf2? 23 l:tx2 i.x2+ 24 ..ti>x2 l:txa2 too-subtle reply by White.
25 i.a3! traps the rook on a2: 25 ...tLle5 26 7 ... d5 is the typical Sicilian freeing break.
tLlb5 lLld3+ 27 ..ti>e2 lLlxb2 28 tLlc t !) 23 However, Black is behind in development
i.xf8 ..ti>xf8 and Black has good compensa so opening the position like this is asking
tion for the pawn - White's p1eces arc for trouble. Play continues 8 tLlc3 (8 e5
somewhat uncoordinated. tLlfd7 9 f4 may also be good for White but
1 8 d6 f5 1 9 lt:\e4 it makes sense to keep the tension) 8 ... tLlc6

48
5 i.. d3 li'J f6 6 0 - 0 'ii c 7: S e v e n th Mo v e A lt e rn a tives

and now: and White has an edge, Arnason


a) 9 l2Jxc6 bxc6 transposes to a position Dizdarevic, Manila Olympiad 1 992. I'll talk
which is normally reached via the Taimanov more about this set-up later, but I will say
Variation: 1 e4 c5 2 l2Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 something here. Note that when compared
l2Jxd4 l2Jc6 5 l2Jc3 a6 6 l2Jxc6 bxc6 7 .id3 to Game 1 6, here White is not hampered by
'ilic7 8 0-0 l2Jf6 9 'ii'e 2 d5 and can also be his own pawn being on c4. There is no out
reached by the Kan in another way (1 e4 c5 post for Black on d4 and the White's light
2 l2Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 l2Jxd4 a6 5 l2Jc3 'ii'c7 squared bishop is more active.
6 .id3 l2Jc6 7 l2Jxc6 bxc6 8 0-0 d5 9 'ii'e 2 8 . . . i.c5 9 i.e3 'iib 6
l2Jf6) . This will be studied in Game 57. All games I found continued with this
b) 9 .ie3!? with a further split: pawn-grabbing idea but as far as I can see
b1) 9 ... .ie7 10 exd5 exd5 1 1 l2Jxc6 bxc6 it's not at all clear that this is Black's best
12 .ic5 .ig4 1 3 'ii'e3 .ie6 1 4 f4 .ixc5 1 5 option.
'ii'xc5 'ifa7 1 6 l2Ja4 ..t>d8 1 7 :fe1 l::.e 8 1 8 b4 I can't find any examples of 9 ... d6!? but
left White with a pleasant grip on the dark it's certainly not a bad move.
squares in G.Hernandez-Fernandes, Bu a) 10 l2Jb3 .ixe3+ 1 1 'ii'xe3 would trans
caramanga 1 992. The immediate 12 ....ie6 pose into an reasonable version of the 5
may be stronger. .id3 .ic5 line (Black has lost a move with
b2) 9 ... dxe4 10 l2Jxe4 .ie7 1 1 l2Jxc6 ... .ie7-d6 but gained it back by playing
'ifxc6 1 2 .id4! and White's development ... .ic5xe3 rather than ....ic5-a7xe3)
advantage IS quite apparent, Fercec b) 10 l2Jc3 0-0 and we reach a variation
Haldemann, Areo 1 999. similar to the one seen in Game 54, except
7 ...l2Jc6?! allows White to play e4-e5: 8 that White is a tempo up. It's not clear
l2Jxc6 dxc6 9 eS! l2Jd7 10 .if4 .ie7 1 1 l2Jd2 whether this is enough to sway the balance
g5?! 12 .ig3 h5 13 h3 l2Jb6 1 4 l2Je4! and, in White's favour. One point to note is that
with l2Jf6+ to follow, White was well on top 1 1 ..t>h 1 b5 12 f5? is answered by the sur
in the game Kalesis-Karatzas, Aegina 1 993. prisingly strong 1 2 ...'ifa7!.
8 f4!? c) White can also consider ideas such as
Of course! Now the threat of e4-e5 10 l2Jd2!? and 10 c4!?, but these are hardly a
forces Black to move the bishop again. refutation of 9 ... d6.
If White is looking for a quieter way to 1 0 c3 li'Jc6 1 1 'it>h 1 ! li'Jxd4 1 2 cxd4
an advantage then 8 ..t>h1 isn't bad: 8 ...l2Jc6 i.xd4 1 3 i.xd4 'iix d4 1 4 li'Jc3
9 l2Jxc6 dxc6 10 f4 e5 1 1 f5

Black has won a pawn but that is where

49
Sicilia n Kan

the good news ends. He is heavily behind in 1 9 .. J:tb8 20 'ifd3 g6 21 ltJc5 White is in
development and has trouble defending all complete control.
the weak dark squares in his position. I 20 exd6 d7 21 lLlc5 b5 22 d3
would go as far as saying that this line is 'ifxd6 23 xh7 + hB 24 'i!Ve3 'ife7 25
only to be recommended for White. 'ifh3 lLlf6 26 lLle4! fdB 27 fe1 c6
1 4 . . . 0-0 2B lLlg5 eB
How much trouble Black is in can be
gauged from the following two sidelines.
a) 14 ... d6 15 ad1 'ifc5 16 e5 dxe5 1 7
fxe5 ltJd7 1 8 ltJe4 'ifxe5 1 9 i.b5!! axb5 20
ltJd6+ 'it>f8 21 l:1xf7+ 'it>g8 22 xd7! 'iff6
23 'ifxe6 +! 1 -0 Steinbacher-Auchenberg,
Copenhagen 1 994
b) 14 ... h5!? (you cannot be serious!) 1 5 e5
ltJg4 1 6 ltJe4 f6 17 ad1 'it>e7 1 8 ltJd6 'ii'e3
19 'ii'c 2 fxe5

There are two very surpnsmg things


about this position. The first is that it had
all been seen before in a previous game.
The second is White's next move ...
29 .:ta1 ! !
This 'novelty' decides the game. The idea
behind moving the rook back to its home
square is that White requires both rooks to
participate in the attack against the black
king. Thus 29 a 1 rules out any exchanges!
(Chiburdanidze-Palos, Baden-Baden 1990) 29 d3?! xd3 30 i.xd3+ 'it>g8 31
and now I like 20 i.f5! exf4 (or 20 ... ltJh6 21 i.h7+ 'it>f8 32 i.f5 'it>g8 33 i.h7+ 'it>f8 34
i.xe6! dxe6 22 'ifg6) 21 i-xg4 hxg4 22 'ifg6 i-f5 'it>g8 35 xe6 'ifc7! allowed Black to
and Black suffers horribly due to his lack of survive in Luther-Barges Mateos, Elista
development. Olympiad 1 998.
1 5 ad 1 'i!Vb4 1 6 e5 lLleB 29 . . .d6 30 e5! .:.adS 31 ae 1 'ifc7
1 6 ... ltJd5 ruins Black's strucrure and 32 lLle4! d 1 33 lLlxf6 xe 1 +
leaves him devoid of any defenders on the Other moves also lose:
kingside: 17 a3 'ifc5 1 8 ltJxd5 exd5 1 9 'ii'h 5 a) 33 ...'ifxe5 34 i.f5 mate.
g6 20 'ifh6 and the threat of f4-f5 is hard to b) 33 ...gxf6 34 i.g6+ 'it>g7 35 'ii'h 7+ 'it>f8
deal with. 36 xe6! fxe6 37 'ifh8+ 'it>e7 38 'ifg7+
1 7 a3 'i!Ve7 1 8 lLla4! 'it>d6 39 xd 1 + 'it>c6 40 cl + and White
Continuing to attack the dark squares. Wins.
1 8 . . . 'i!Vd8 34 lbe 1 gxf6 35 i.f5 + gB 36 'ifh7 +
Narurally 1 8 ... b5? is met by 1 9 'ife4!. 'it>fB 37 xe6 'ifxf4 38 'ifhB + e7 39
1 9 b1 d5!? xf7 + ! xf7 40 'i!Vh7 + fB 4 1 'i!Ve7 +
A desperate bid for freedom. After 1 -0

50
5 i. d3 Ci:J f6 6 0 - 0 c 7: S e v e n th Mo ve A l tern a tives

could put his c-pawn back on c2, then these


Game 16 problems would disappear. Alas, pawns
Smirin-Goldin cannot move backwards!
Philadelphia 1998

1 e4 c5 2 Ci:JfJ e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Ci:Jxd4 a6


5 i.dJ Ci:Jf6 6 0-0 c7 7 c4! ?
The main alternative to 7 'ii'e2. White
immediately sets up the Maroczy Bind and
keeps options open regarding the placement
of his queen. If Black now plays 7 ... d6 then
we reach positions very similar to those in
Chapter 1 , except that White has the slight
advantage of being able to choose whether
to play 'ii'e2 or not. This may be particularly
useful for White if Black fianchettoes as
White's queen may then be better placed at White does, however, have compensating
home, where it can bear down on the d6- features: he has a slight lead in development
pawn. and (after the 1 0th move) a space advantage
7 . . . Ci:Jc6! on the kingside.
The negative side of White's previous 9 f4!
move is seen in Black's clever reply. The The critical move. White threatens the
move ... l2Jc6 rarely blends in well in a Kan space-gaining e4-e5 and forces Black's hand
system but this is an important exception. in the centre.
Normally in these lines White meets ...l2Jc6 9 l2Jc3 e5! solves all of Black's problems,
with an exchange of knights, but the fact for example:
that Black has yet to move his d-pawn is a a) 10 h3 .ic5 1 1 l2Ja4 d4! 12 c5 .ie6 1 3
very positive feature for him. .id2 0-0 1 4 'ii'c2 h 6 1 5 l:tad1 l:tad8 1 6 l:tfe1
7 ... c5!? 8 l2Jb3 e7 (8....ia7!?) 9 l2Jc3 'ii'e 7 was equal in Maskova-Emms, Menchik
d6 reaches positions similar to those in Memorial, Maidstone 1 994.
Chapter 4. b) 10 .ie3 l2Jg4! 1 1 .id2 .ic5 12 l2Ja4
8 Ci:Jxc6 d4! 1 3 c5 .ie6 1 4 'ii'c 2 'ii'e7 1 5 h3 l2Jf6
For other white possibilities, see Game and Black was happy enough in Carlsson
1 7. Salm, correspondence 1 984. The continua
8 . dxc6!
. . tion to this game is worth seeing: 1 6 'iti>h2?!
The point! Black breaks with tradition by h5! 17 g3? h4! 18 g4 .ixg4! 19 hxg4 l2Jxg4+
capturing 'away from the centre' but the 20 'iti>g2 (20 'iti>g1 'ii f6!) 20 ... h3+ 21 'iti>h1
ensuing pawn structure holds little fear for l2Jxf2+ 22 l:txf2 .ixf2 and Black went on to
the second player. Black will inevitably fol wtn.
low up with ...e6-e5, leaving a symmetrical c) 10 'ii'e2 .ie6 (10 ... .ic5 1 1 e3 .ixe3 12
pawn structure with some attractive points 'iixe3 0-0 is safe and equal) 11 f4 j_c5+ 12
for Black. The first is that he has a ready 'iti>h 1 .ig4! 1 3 'ii'c 2 (Griinfeld-Hulak, Za
made outpost on the d4-square while White greb 1 987) and now the general opinion is
has no similar one himself. The second fac that Black should play 13 .. l:td8! (instead of
tor is that White's bishop on d3 is 'bad' and Hulak's 13 ... 0-0-0), for example:
hemmed in by its own pawns. If only White cl) 14 fxe5 l2Jd7! and ... l2Jxe5.

51
Sicilian Ka n

c2) 14 f5 'ii'd 6 1 5 i.e2 (or 1 5 ll'la4 i.a7 repeat this line as in note 'a' five years later.
1 6 i.e2 i.xe2 17 'ii'xe2 'ii'd3!) 1 5 .. i.xe2 1 6 Maybe he has something up his sleeve.
lixe2 lid3 and Black can b e happy. 1 2 lbd2
c3) 14 h3 ll'lh5!! 1 5 hxg4 lie7! (Zeller) White's knight comes to help out on the
and Black has a strong attack, for example kingside, where White is devoid of pieces.
16 g5 ll'lg3+ 17 'it>h2 ll'lxfl + 18 i.xfl exf4 The main alternative is 12 ll'lc3 tt'lg4 1 3
1 9 i.xf4? h6!. li e ( 1 3 lie2 'ii'd8 1 4 .ic2? ll'lxh2!, Taylor
9 . . . e 5 10 f5 Mortazavi, British League 1 998 is an obvi
The most obvious and only testing move ous example of the tricks Black has in this
at White's disposal. White obtains a space line) 13. .. lid8! (a neat switchback; Black
advantage on the kingside and, for the mo threatens ...lih4 and ... ll'lf2+) and now:
ment at least, Black's light-squared bishop is a) 14 lig3!? .if2 1 5 'ii' e (or 1 5 lih3
sealed out of the game. .td4) 1 5 ... i.d4 16 lig3 i.f2 17 lie i.d4
1 0 . . . ..tc5 + 1 1 h 1 18 'ii'g3 was a draw by repetition, Surak
Edwards, correspondence 1 986.
b) 1 4 ll'ld1 lih4 15 h3 b6 16 i.d2 .ib7
17 b4 i.d4 with a further split:
b 1) 18 .ic3 0-0-0? 19 c5! was good for
White in Agnos-Emms, St Albans 1 993, so
Black should instead activate his b7-bishop
with 1 8 ... c5!.
b2) 18 l:tb1 c5! 19 bxc5 i.xc5 20 i.b4
i.d4 and here it's best for White to accept a
draw by repetition after 21 i.c3 .ic5 22
.ib4 as 21 c5? bxc5 22 i.xc5 .ixc5 23
l:txb7 0-0 was good for Black in McDonald
Emms, British Championship 1 993.
1 1 . . h5!? . Also possible is 12 i.g5 ll'lg4 13 lie2
This is certainly Black's most ambitious lid6 14 .ih4 i.d7 1 5 h3 ll'lf6 1 6 ll'lc3 0-0-0
move. For the moment Black does nothing 17 ll'la4 .id4, which was unclear in Casares
to address the problem of his bishop on c8. Ripoli-Matt, correspondence 1 991 . Fe
Instead he plans an attack on the dark dorowicz suggests 12 ... h4, intending ... ll'lh5.
squares on the kingside with c5-bishop, 1 2 . . . lbg4 1 3 'i'e2
knight and queen.
A more restrained strategy can be seen
with 1 1 ...i.d4 1 2 ll'lc3 h6 and now:
a) 13 i.d2 b6 14 l:tb1 i.b7 1 5 b4 l:td8 1 6
lie2 0-0 was level i n Anagnostopoulos
Bischoff, Bad Worishofen 1 993.
b) 13 ll'le2 c5 1 4 l:tb1 i.d7 (14...b6!?) 1 5
ll'lxd4 cxd4 1 6 b4 and White was slighdy
better in Pyhala-Bischoff, Thessaloniki
Olympiad 1 988. Depending on where Black
puts his king, White has chances to attack
on either side of the board. It should be
noted, though, that Bischoff was happy to

52
5 i. d3 l"i'J f6 6 0 - 0 c 7 : S e v e n th Mo v e A lterna tives

13 . . . d8 comfortably.
A major alternative for Black here is 1 5 .ic2 b6 1 6 l"i'Jh4
13 ...'ii'b 6 and now: Now after 16 h3 lLlf2+ (but not 16 ...l2Je3
a) 14 g3?! lLlf2+ 1 5 Wg2 lLlxd3! 1 6 'ii'xd3 1 7 ..ixe3 ..ixe3 1 8 b4!) 1 7 Wh2 l2Jg4+ 1 8
..id4 1 7 l:lb 1 c5 1 8 a3 ..id7 1 9 b4 ..ia4! and Wg3 lLle3! the difference i s that the knight
Black was doing very well in the game forks rooks and bishop - Black has success
Wolff-Gheorghiu, New York 1 987. fully lost a move to induce White's bishop
b) 14 h3 lLlf2+ 15 Wh2 'ii'd B 1 6 lLlb3 (16 to the unfavourable c2-square. Maybe White
l2Jf3!?) 16 ...'ii'xd3 1 7 l:hf2 'ii'xe2 18 .l:txe2 should consider 1 5 ..ib1!? .
..ie7 was equal in Riemersma-Jukic, Graz 1 6 . . . l"i'Jf2 + 1 7 l:.xf2 i.xf2 1 8 l"i'Jg6 l:.h7
1 987
c) 14 lLlf3!? is a suggestion from Byrne
and Mednis. After 1 4... f6?! 1 5 h3 lLlf2+ 1 6
Wh2 lLlg4+ 1 7 Wg3! Black i s forced back,
while 14 ... l2Jf2+ 1 5 l:lxf2 ..ixf2 16 lLlxe5
gives White serious attacking chances for
the small material investment.
1 4 l"i'Jf3! f6
Not a move Black really wants to play
but the e5-pawn needs some protection.
The alternative is 14 ...l2Jf2+ 1 5 l:lxf2 ..ixf2
16 lLlxe5, which again gives White tremen
dous compensation for the exchange. Play
continues with 16 ... ..ic5 17 ..if4 and now: Black has won the exchange but the rook
a) 17 ... ..id6 1 8 c5! ..ixe5 (or 1 8 ... ..ixc5 1 9 on h7 is a terrible piece which will do well
..ic4) 1 9 ..ixe5 0-0 20 ..id6 l:le8 21 'ii'xh5 is to give itself up for a minor piece.
virrually winning for White. 1 9 c5!? xc5 20 .ib3 i.d7 21 i.g8 l:.h6
b) 17 ... 'ii'e7 1 8 l2Jf3 g6 with a further 22 i.xh6 % - %
split: And just as the game was getting excit
b 1) Estrada Nieto gives the line 1 9 b4 ing! The final position is extremely messy .
..ixb4 20 'ii'b 2. Now it's true that 20... 0-0?
21 ..ih6 f6 22 ..ixf8 Wxf8 23 lLlh4 is win Game 1 7
ning for White but, although I would be Aseev-Kochyev
reluctant to take the black pieces, I can't Leningrad 1984
quite find a killer blow for White after
20...l:lg8. 1 e4 c5 2 l"i'Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 l"i'Jxd4 a6
b2) 1 9 fxg6 fxg6 20 e5 'ii' f7 21 ..ig5 ..ig4 5 i.d3 l"i'Jf6 6 0-0 c7 7 c4 l"i'Jc6 8 i.e3
22 ..if6 l:lg8 23 l:lft ..ie7 24 h3 ..ixf3 25 If White doesn't want to exchange on c6
l:lxf3 0-0-0 26 c5 'ii'e 8 27 ..ixa6 ..ixf6 28 then this is the most narural way to con
exf6 bxa6 29 'ii'x a6+ <3;c7 and, instead of tinue.
the game continuation of 30 'ii'b 6+ WeB 31 After 8 l2Jf3 Black can continue in ag
'ii'a 6+ Wc7 32 'ii'a 7+ WeB 33 'ii'a 8+ Wc7 gressive fashion with 8 ... l2Jg4! 9 l2Jc3 (or 9
34 'ii'a 7+ 1/z-1/z Estrada Nieto-Strikovic, h3 h5!) and now:
Merida 2000, I can't find a defence to 30 f7!, a) 9 ... l2Jd4!? 10 e5!? (10 g3 lLlxf3+ 1 1 'ii'x f3
for example 30...l:ld1 + 31 l:lft l:lxfl + 32 lLle5 1 2 'ii'e 2 d6 is equal - Ivanchuk)
'ii'xfl 'ii' f8 33 'ii' f4+ seems to win quite 10 ...l2Jxf3+ 1 1 'ii'xf3 lLlxe5 1 2 'ii'g3 with

53
Sicilian Kan

some compensation for the pawn - lvan 0-0 13 l:te1 i..d 6!? 1 4 i..g5 l:tac8 1 5 i.ft
chuk. lbg6 1 6 liJf3 i..e7 1 7 i..d3 d6 with equality,
b) 9 ... i..e 7 10 i..e 2 b6 1 1 h3 h5 12 g3 Kaidanov-Kharitonov, Lvov 1 985.
liJge5 13 h4 g6 14 i.. f4 d6 was equal in lv 1 0 . tt:\xd3 1 1 1fxd3 i.b 7
. .

anchuk-Portisch, European Team Ch., De


brecen 1 992.
c) 9 ... b6!? and now:
cl) 10 h3?! h5! 1 1 g3 lbge5 1 2 i..e 3 h4!
13 g4 i.d6 14 l:tct liJxf3+ 1 5 'ilt'xf3 liJe5 1 6
'iVd1 liJg6

1 2 tt:\d2
I prefer the more ambitious 12 lbc3!?,
for example:
a) 1 2...l:tc8 13 e5 liJgB 14 b3 lbe7!?
(14 ...b5!?) 1 5 liJcb5!? axbS 1 6 liJxb5 'ii'c 6 1 7
liJd6+ 'it>dB 1 8 liJxf7+ 'it>e8 1 9 liJd6+ 'it>d8
is an excellent example of a successful 20 l:t2 liJf5 21 liJxf5 (21 liJf?+? 'it>c7 22
Black strategy in Kamsky-I.Gurcvich, New lbxh8 lbxe3 23 'ilt'xe3 i.c5 24 'ilt'g3 l:txh8 is
York 1991 - the dark squares on the king good for Black) 21 ... exf5 22 'ilt'xf5 with a
side arc dominated by Black. very complex position - Black is very disor
b) 10 g3! i..b7 1 1 i.. f4 liJge5 is level. ganised but has the long-term advantage of
8 . tt:\e5
. . that extra bishop.
The most logical move; Black puts pres b) 12 ... i.b4 13 e5 i..xc3 14 'ilt'xc3 liJe4 1 5
sure on c4, hits the bishop on d3 and gains 'ilt'a3 (or 1 5 'ilt'b4 aS! 1 6 'ilt'a3 'ilt'xc4 1 7 l:!.act
time by threatening ...liJg4. 'ilt'b4) 15 .. . f5 and Black can continue with
9 h3 b6 . ..'it> f7.
In my opinion, this is the most exact 1 2 . . ...tb4 13 tt:\4b3 i.xd2 14 tt:\xd2 1t'c6
move order - Black prepares to attack the 1 5 .l:!.fe1 tt:\xe4 1 6 tt:\xe4 1fxe4 1 7 1fxe4
e4-pawn. ..txe4 Y:z-Y:z
9 ... d6 10 f4 liJxd3 (10 ... liJxc4? 1 1 'ilt'c2! After 1 8 i..xb6 the position is completely
b5 12 b3) 1 1 'ilt'xd3 i..e7 12 liJc3 0-0 13 a4 equal.
b6 14 f5 was slightly better for White in
Yemelin-Shaposhnikov, St. Petersburg 1 996; Game 18
Black always has to be careful regarding the Haii-Hellsten
pressure on the e6-pawn. Umhamn 1998
9 ...lbxc4? walks into a pin after 10 'ilt'c2!
b5 1 1 b3. 1 e4 c5 2 tt:\t3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt:\xd4 a6
10 f4 5 i.d3 tt:\t6 6 0-0 1fc7 7 'it>h 1
Or 1 0 lbc3 i.. b7 1 1 l:tct i..b4 1 2 i.f4 A very flexible move. White eliminates

54
5 .1t.. d3 lD f 6 6 0 - 0 'fi c 7 : S e v e n th Mo ve A lterna tives

annoying tactics by removing his king from e6-pawn defended by the c8-bishop.
the a7-gl diagonal and prepares 2-f4, while 8 lDc3
keeping his options open regarding other Another major line is 8 exd5 tt:Jxd5
pieces and pawns. If there is a negative side,
then it's that 'iit h 1 is hardly a developing
move and Black, if he wishes, can strike
immediately in the centre.

and now:
a) 9 e4 4Jf6 10 f3 e7 is equal -
Hubner.
b) 9 c4 4Jf6 10 tt:Jc3 e7 1 1 'ii'e 2 0-0 1 2
7 . ..d5!? i.g5 lld8 1 3 4Jb3 4Jbd7 1 4 llacl 4Jf8 1 5
This takes play away from a 'typical' Kan llfel d7 1 6 h 3 c6 and Black was fine,
and into independent lines. Normally Black Andersen-Hellsten, Gistrup 1 997.
would find it difficult to justify this idealistic c) 9 f4 g6! (ECO gives 9 ...c5 1 0 4Jb3
freeing advance quite so early in the Kan, d6 1 1 'ii' f3 4Jd7, Pietzsch-Gipslis, Riga
but his argument runs that White has effec 1 959, as equal) 1 0 e4 4Jf6 1 1 f3 i.g7 1 2
tively 'lost' a tempo with 'iitg t-hl , so why c 3 0-0 1 3 'Wet 4Jbd7 1 4 e3 4Jb6 1 5 4Jd2
not? Psychologically, though, many Kan 4Jbd5 and I prefer Black in Herbrechts
players would be reluctant to change the meier-Raupp, Eppingen 1 988 - the kingside
flavour of the position, regardless of is rock-solid.
whether Black can achieve equality or not. d) 9 lle t e7 10 c4 4Jf6 1 1 4Jc3 d7 1 2
If Black wishes to keep a hedgehog struc g5 tDc6 1 3 4Jf5!? ( 1 3 xf6 gxf6! and
ture then he can play 7 ... d6 8 f4 4Jbd7 and Black will castle queenside) 13 ...exf5 1 4
now: 4Jd5 tDxd5 1 5 cxd5 0-0 1 6 xe7 tDxe7 1 7
a) 9 4Jc3 transposes to lines considered llxe7 'ir'd6 1 8 llel 'ii'xd5 1 9 .1xa6 .1c6 20
in Chapter 6. 'ii'xd5 was agreed drawn in Zapata-Urday
b) 9 c4 with a further branch: Caceres, Americana 1 997.
bl) 9 ...e7 10 tDc3 0-0 1 1 'ir'e2 leads Another idea for White is 8 tDd2 4Jbd7
back to positions considered in Chapter 1 , (8... dxe4 9 tt:Jxe4 transposes to the text) 9
where White has already committed his king exd5 tt:Jxd5 10 c4 tD5f6 1 1 tt:Je4!? tDxe4 1 2
to h l . xe4 4Jf6 13 c2!? 'ir'xc4 ( 1 3. . .c5 is the
b2) 9. . .g6?! is hit once again with 1 0 f5! e5 safe option) 14 g5 c5 1 5 4Jf3 and White
(or 10 ... gxf5 1 1 exfS e5 12 tt:Je6!) 1 1 tDc2 has some compensation for the pawn, Sul
and White was better in Hi.ibner-Lutz, skis-C.Horvath, Budapest 1 994.
Bundesliga 1 993. If Black wishes to fi 8 . dxe4 9 liJxe4 liJbd7 1 0 b3
. .

anchetto he should play 8 ... g6!, leaving his 10 c4!? transposes to Sulskis-C.Horvath

55
Sicilia n Kan

above. More ambitious is 15 h3!? and now:


10 ltJxf6+!? ltJxf6 reaches a similar posi a) After 15 ... ltJg4? White can safely take
tion to one from the French Defence (1 e4 the knight: 1 6 hxg4 hxg4+ 17 g1 'iWh2+
e6 2 d4 d5 3 ltJd2 c5 4 exd5 11i'xd5 5 ltJgf3 1 8 fl 'ifh 1 + 1 9 e2 'iWxg2 20 l:tg1 and
cxd4 6 c4 'Wd6 7 0-0 ltJf6 8 ltJb3 ltJc6 9 Black doesn't have enough for the piece.
ltJbxd4 ltJxd4 10 ltJxd4 a6 1 1 d3 11i'c7), b) 1 5 . . . 0-0-0 16 ltJf5!? exf5!? 17 l:txe7
except that White's king is on h1 rather than ltJg4! 1 8 'iWg1 ! (18 hxg4 hxg4+ 19 g1
gl . This adds both positive and negative ir'h2+ 20 fl ir'd6! wins for Black - 21
features to a line which is considered not to l:txd7 l:thl + 22 e2 ir'e6+) 18 ...ir'c5 1 9
be critical. 1 1 l:te 1 and now: l:te2 f4 20 l:tae 1 !, preparing 21 f3 ltJe3 22
a) 1 1 ...d6? is playable in the French line c l , and Black seems to be running out of
with the king on g1 but here 1 2 ltJf5! is tricks. Instead of 16 ... exf5, the line 1 6 ... i.f8!
much stronger than usual. 17 e5 ir'c5 1 8 ltJd4 d6 is safe for Black.
b) 1 1 ...d7 12 'Wf3!, intending f4, is 1 5 . . . tt'lg4 1 6 g3
uncomfortable for Black. 16 ltJf3?! is answered by 16 ... c6!, for
c) 1 1 ...i.c5! 12 ltJf5?! 0-0 13 ltJxg7 xg7 example 1 7 ltJe5? f6! 1 8 g6+ f8 and
1 4 'iWd2 is refuted by 1 4...ltJg8! 1 5 'i/Vg5+ Black wins.
h8 1 6 f4 d6, while 1 2 ltJf3 simply 1 6 . . . 0-0-0
leaves f2 hanging - a negative feature of
hl . Instead White should play 1 2 c3 and
now 1 2...d7 1 3 'iWf3 ( 1 3 g5 0-0-0!?; 1 3
'ife2!?) 1 3...xd4 1 4 cxd4 c6 looks equal.
1 0 . . . e7 ! ?
1 0. . .ltJxe4! 1 1 i.xe4 ltJf6 1 2 f3 d6
looks perfectly acceptable for Black.
1 1 b2 tt'lxe4 1 2 xe4 tt'lf6 1 3 i.d3
..td7 1 4 l:!.e1

A very sharp pos!Uon has arisen, but


counterplay on the kingside gives Black a
full share of the chances. In the game a tac
tical sequence soon forces an equal ending.
1 7 h3 c5! 1 8 c3 e5 1 9 hxg4 hxg4 +
20 'it>g 1 exd4 21 cxd4 l:!.de8 22 'ifc2
l:!.xe 1 + 23 l:!.xe 1 ..td6 24 'ifxc7 + 'tixc7
25 d5 l:!.h5 26 .l:lc1 + 'tid8 27 .txg7
l:!.xd5 28 ..te4 l:!.d2 29 ..txb7 Y2 - Y2
1 4 . . .h 5 ! ?
An idea borrowed from the same French Game 19
Defence variation quoted above. Black C .Koch-Fanghui Feng
plans ...ltJg4, which is even stronger than Comspondence 2000
usual due to the threat to the f2-pawn.
1 5 'ife2 1 e4 c5 2 tt'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt'lxd4 a6

56
5 JJ.. d3 t:D f6 6 0 - 0 c 7 : S e v e n th Mo v e A lterna tives

5 JJ.. d 3 t:Df6 6 0-0 'iic 7 7 f4 three pawns are worth slightly more than
A very aggressive move - White immedi Black's knight, Kasimdzhanov-Kagirov,
ately goes for a kingside launch, but allows Uzbekistan Championship 1 993.
Black to pin the knight on d4 to his king.
Here's a summary of other seventh move
alternatives for White:
a) 7 lLlc3 transposes to Chapter 6.
b) 7 b3 d6 is likely to transpose to lines
considered in Chapter 1, for example 8 i.b2
t:Llbd7 9 c4 g6 10 lLlc3 i.g7 1 1 'ii'e 2 0-0 and
we have reached Short-Sax (Game 8).
c) 7 lLld2 with the plan of f2-f4 and
lLl2f3 is interesting, but shouldn't be threat
ening: 7 ... d6 8 a4!? (It's too late to change
your mind and fianchetto: 8 b3?? 'ii'c 3! is
embarrassing. Also 8 f4 g6! 9 lD2f3 i.g7 1 0
'ii'e 1 lLlbd7 1 1 i.d2 0-0 1 2 'ifh4 eS 1 3 fxeS d2) 8 ... dxe4! 9 lLlxe4 lLlbd7 1 0 lLlxf6+
dxeS 1 4 lLlb3 lLlhS! was fine for Black in lLlxf6 and again we transpose into a position
Fusthy-Hulak, Berlin 1 988) and now: normally reached via 1 e4 e6 2 d4 dS 3 t:Lld2
cl) 8 ...g6 9 b3! i.g7 (9 ...'iWc3 doesn't cS 4 exdS 'ii'x dS 5 t:Llgf3 cxd4 6 i.c4 'ii'd6 7
work now: 10 .l:tb1 'ii'xd4 1 1 i.b2 regains 0-0 lLlf6 8 t:Llb3 lLlc6 9 lLlbxd4 lLlxd4 10
the piece with a large advantage) 10 i.a3 lLlxd4 a6 11 i.d3 'ii'c 7, except White has
0-0 1 1 lLlc4 l%.d8 1 2 i.b4 lLlc6 1 3 lLlxc6 the extra move i.c1 -e3. It's debatable
'ii'xc6 14 i.aS l1e8 1 5 lLlb6 l1b8 was agreed whether the bishop is much better here than
drawn in Kuzmin-Vyzmanavin, Leningrad on c l : 1 1 'ii' f3 i.d6 1 2 h3 0-0 13 .l:tad1 i.d7
1990 but without pointing to anything ob 14 .l:tfel .l:tae8 1 5 i.gS i.eS 1 6 i.. f1 lLldS 1 7
vious, I'm suspicious of Black's play here. c 3 bS 1 8 'iWe4 i..h 2+ 1 9 W h 1 i.. f4! and
c2) 8 ... b6 9 f4 i.b7 10 'ii'e 2 lLlbd7 1 1 Black had equalised in Ernst-Lau, Dort
lLl2f3 lLlcS! 1 2 eS dxeS 1 3 fxeS lLlxd3 1 4 mund 1 992.
cxd3 t:Lld5 1 5 Wh1 i.cS 1 6 lLlb3 i..e 7 1 7 aS 7 . . . JJ.. c 5
0-0 and Black was fine in Pablo Marin-Vehi It seems only natural to pin the knight.
Bach, Tarrassa 1 989. 7 ... d6 is also possible when White can
d) i.e3 dS!? (as with 7 Wh1 , Black can if choose between 8 c4, with possible transpo
he wishes aim for the French structure; the sitions to Chapter 1 (although White has yet
bishop is rather clumsily placed on e3 in this to commit his queen to e2), or 8 lLlc3 with a
instance) 8 lLlc3 transposition to Chapter 6.
8 c3 t:Dc6
see following diagram
Inviting White to sacrifice a pawn.
and now: 8... d6! is the safest response: 9 h1 eS
d1) 8... e5?! (this wins a piece but the (or 9 ...lLlc6 10 lLlb3 i..a7 1 1 c4 [Galliamova
price is high) 9 lLlxdS lLlxdS 10 exdS exd4 Ivanchuk-Ioseliani, Groningen 1 997] and
11 i.xd4 i.e7! (1 1 ...f6 12 'iWhS+ Wd8 1 3 now 1 1 ...0-0 is equal) 1 0 lLlb3 (or 10 fxeS
.l:tfe1 i..d 6 1 4 .l:te3 gave White a very strong dxeS 1 1 lLlf5 i..x fS 1 2 l:txf5 lLlbd7) 1 0...i..a7
attack, Hawelko-Mokry, Polanica Zdroj 1 1 'ii'f3 lLlbd7 1 2 c4 0-0 1 3 lLlc3 exf4 (Sax
1986) 12 'iWhS 'ii'f4 1 3 i.xg7 i.g4 14 'ii'e S Dizdarevic, Sarajevo 1 985) and now Diz
'i'xeS 15 i..x eS f6 16 i.. f4 when White's darevic gives 14 i..x f4 lLleS 1 5 i..x eS dxeS

57
Sicilia n Ka n

as being equal. xd1 + 24 l:txd1 was a level ending in Cam


9 'it>h 1 pora-Costa, Swiss League 1 99S, but I prefer
9 eS!? is more forcing: the more ambitious 14 tt'lc3! d4 1 S tt'le4.
a) 9 ...tt'lxd4 10 cxd4 i.xd4+ 1 1 Wh 1 1 1 . . .0-0?
tt'ldS 1 2 i.e4 - see the note to White's 1 1 th. Stronger is 1 1 ... i.cS, although following
b) 9 ... tt'ldS 10 Wh 1 ! (ECO gives 10 i.e4?! 12 eS tt'ldS 1 3 tt'le4 i.e7 1 4 i.d2 bS 1 S a4
d6 1 1 i.xdS exdS 12 exd6 i.xd6 13 el + b4 1 6 aS i.b7 1 7 1fhS i.c6 1 8 fc l , White
tt'le7 1 4 1f f3 0-0 as good for Black, Sax has more than enough compensation,
Bellon Lopez, Graz 1 984, but I believe 1 0 Lupu-Ionescu, Romanian Ch., 1 992.
Wh 1 i s stronger) 1 0...d6 ( 1 0... tt'lxd4 1 1 cxd4 1 2 e5 tLld5 1 3 lLlf3 tLle3
i.xd4 transposes to the note to White's 13 ... i.a7 allows a 'Greek Gift' sacrifice
1 1 th move) 1 1 tt'lxc6 bxc6 12 1We2 0-0 1 3 with 14 i.xh7+! Wxh7 1 S tt'lgS+ Wg6 (or
tt'ld2 fS 1 4 exf6 tt'lxf6 1 S tt'lf3 a S 1 6 i.d2 1 S ...Wg8 1 6 1WhS 1Wc2 1 7 fS!) 1 6 1Wg4 fS 1 7
i.d7 1 7 ae 1 was a bit better for White in 1ih4 and White has a clear advantage.
Mokry-Vyzmanavin, Tilburg 1 994. The 1 4 .ixe3 .ixe3 1 5 i.xh7 + ! 'it>xh7 1 6
game continued 1 7 ...ae8 1 8 i.c2 e7 1 9 tLlg5 + 'it>gB 1 7 'ii'd 3 g6 1 8 'ii'x e3
tt'lgS d S 20 tt'lf3! and the knight was ready
to jump into the eS-outpost.
9 . . . tLlxd4
Black still has a chance to play it safe
with 9 ... d6, transposing to the note to
Black's 8th move.
1 0 cxd4 .i.xd4

White has a strategically winning position


due to the weakness of Black's king and the
dark squares all over the board.
1 8 . . . 'it>g7 1 9 l:l.ac1 'ii'd B 20 l:l.fd1 b5 2 1
'ii'd 4 l:thB 2 2 'it> g 1 l:tbB 2 3 l:l.c5 l:l. h 5 24
'ii'd 3 'ii'h B 25 l:l.c7 'ii'd B 26 l:l.dc1 aS 27
h3 l:th4 28 'ii'g 3 l:th5 29 'ii'e 3 .l:!.aB 30
1 1 tLld2! 'ii'c 5 .:.hs 31 'ii'x b5 .:.h4 32 g3 l:l.h5 33
I believe this is the strongest move here, 'ii'a4 .l:!.xg5 34 fxg5 'ii'x g5 35 'ii'f4 'ii'xf4
but 1 1 eS is also important due to transposi 36 gxf4 .ta6 37 l:l.xd7 i.b5 38 l:l.b7 .teB
tional reasons: 1 1 ...tt'ldS 1 2 i.e4 i.cS 39 f2 h6 40 b3 a4 41 b4 l:l.dB 42
(1 2 ... 1VcS!? is possible, but not 12 ...tt'le3? 1 3 li;e3 a3 43 l:l.a7 li;hS 44 l:l.xa3 g5 45
1fxd4! tt'lxfl 1 4 1fd1 and the knight is fxg5 li;xg5 46 'it>e4 f5 + 4 7 exf6 li;xf6
trapped) 1 3 i.xdS exdS 14 1ixdS 0-0 1 S 48 l:l.f 1 + li;e7 49 .:.a7 + l:l.d7 50 l:l.xd7 +
d1 b S 1 6 tt'lc3 i.b7 1 7 1fxd7 1ib6 1 8 li;xd7 51 a4 li;c7 52 b5 li;b6 53 l:l.f6
tt'ldS i.xdS 1 9 1ixdS ad8 20 1f f3 xd 1 + li;a5 54 .l:be6 .i.d7 55 li;d5 li;xa4 56 b6
2 1 1fxd1 l:td8 22 i.d2 i.b4 23 i.xb4 .tcB 57 l:l.e7 1 -0

58
5 i. d3 l'i:J f6 6 0 - 0 'ii c 7 : S e v e n th Mo ve A lterna tives

Summary
Both 7 ...i.c5 and 7 ... i.d6 (Games 1 4- 1 5) are probably worth the occasional outing but I
wouldn't advise employing them as 'stock' defences. 7 c4 has received some stick in the
popular press and Black's results have been encouraging, but I believe that Games 1 6- 1 7
show that Black must still play accurately t o achieve a reasonable position. These lines arc
less explored than those in Chapter 1 and independent srudy will pay dividends for both
Black and White.

1 e4 c5 2 l'i:Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 l'i:Jxd4 a6 5 i.d3 l'i:Jf6 6 0-0 'iic 7 7 'iie 2


7 c4 ltJc6
8 i.e3 - Game 1 7
8 ltJxc6 dxc6 (D) - Game 1 6
7 'it>h l - Game 18
7 f4 (D) - Game 19
7 . . . i.c5 - Game 14
7 ... i.d6 (D) - Game 15

8 . . . dxc6 7 f4 7 . . . i.d6
CHAPTER THREE I
5 ..td3 tiJf6 6 0-0 d6

1 e4 c5 2 ltlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ltlxd4 a6 ing the c-pawn) . The other line to consider
5 ..td3 ltlf6 6 0-0 d6 is 6 tbc3 d6, which is closely linked to the
In this chapter we shall be studying Sicilian Scheveningen and indeed can be
Black's main sixth move alternative, which reached by this move order (1 e4 c5 2 tbf3
is 6 ... d6. As well as this, we will take a brief d6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tbxd4 tiJf6 5 tbc3 e6 6
look at other sixth moves for both White ..td3!? a6). After 7 0-0 the move 7 . . .b5!?
and Black. keeps a Kan flavour and is studied in Chap
Let's go through the opening moves ter 8 under the move order 5 tDc3 b5 6
agam. ..td3 d6 7 0-0 lDf6.
1 e4 c5 2 ltlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ltlxd4 a6 c) 6 f4!? is another tricky move (I can
5 ..td3 ltlf6 6 0-0 only find eleven examples of this in my
It's quite easy to skip past other sixth database of over 22,000 Kan games):
move options for White, concentrating 6 ... ..tc5!? (6 ... d6 is normal; after 7 0-0 we
solely on 6 0-0 (even the usually compre transpose to the note to White's 7th move)
hensive ECO is guilty of this). There are, 7 tDb3 ..ta7 8 tDc3 d6 9 'ilif3 tbc6 1 0 g4
however, some tricky alternatives which, by tbd7 1 1 g5 b5 1 2 h4 ..tb7 led to something
using clever move orders, attempt to steer unusual in the game E.Berg-Hellsten, Ron
the game into lines Black may be wishing to neby 1 998. In this type of position Black's
avoid. bishop is normally on e7 (or perhaps, with
a) For 6 c4, sec 5 c4 tDf6 6 ..td3 in Chap ... g7-g6, g7) but not on a7. Nevertheless,
ter 9. with Black probably castling quccnside, this
b) 6 tDc3 is an important transpositional also looks perfectly satisfactory for him.
move. 6 .. .'ific7 would then transpose into d) 6 'ilie2!? virtually forces 6 ... d6 due to
lines discussed in Chapter 6. If Black wishes the threat of e4-e5. A fter 7 0-0 we reach
instead to steer the game into variations normal lines except that the price of forcing
discussed in Chapter 7, he should try Black into an early ... d7-d6 is that White has
6 .. .'ilib6 although I have to say that there committed his queen to c2. Independent
has been very little practical experience with lines can be reached if White castles on the
this move order (those playing 5 ..td3 nor queenside (this is very rare in the Kan) : 7 f4
mally wish to leave the option open of mov- g6 8 tbf3 ..tg7 9 tbc3 'i!ic7 10 ..td2!? 0-0 1 1

60
5 i. d3 CiJ f6 6 0 - 0 d6

0-0-0 lL'lc6 1 2 l:the1 b5 1 3 e5 dxe5 14 fxe5 7 . . . i.d7


lL'ld7 15 f4 b7 16 '1t>b1 lL'lc5 and Black This move, with the idea of following up
looks to be in perfectly good shape here, with ... lL'lc6, has become quite popular in
Rowson-Spraggett, Edmonton 2000. recent years, having been taken up by Kan
6 . . . d6 specialists Rublcvsky and Milov. Thus four
Apart from 6 ... 1Vc7 (see Chapters 1 and games in this chapter arc devoted to
2) and 6 ... d6 (the main subject of this chap 7...d7.
ter) Black doesn't really have too much The fianchetto with 7 ...g6 is srudicd in
choice: Game 24, while the classical 7 ... e7 is stud
a) 6 ... d5?! is dubious. After 7 e5 the most ied in Games 25 and 26. Other seventh
narural retreat loses: 7 ... lL'lfd7? 8 lL'lxe6 fxc6 move alternatives for Black are studied in
9 1Vh5+ g6 10 i.xg6+!. the notes to Game 25.
b) 6...c5 7 lL'lb3 a7, trying to trans 8 CiJc3 CiJc6 9 CiJxc6
pose into ...c5 lines where White is com By far the most popular move. White's
mitted to castling kingside, suffers from the only real alternative, 9 e3, is discussed in
fact that it allows White to hit the f6-knight: Game 23.
8 e5 lL'ld5 and now 9 1Vg4 emphasises 9 . . . .ixc6
Black's bare-looking kingside. It's very rare
that Black can get away with allowing White
an early knight-hitting e4-e5.
c) 6 ... e5?! is a very cheeky move; Black
decides to play a Najdorf-srylc position a
whole tempo down! However, it has been
played a few times, notably by Romanishin.
7 lL'lb3 d6 8 c4 c7 9 lL'lc3 0-0 (Computer P
ConNers-Romanishin, Lippstadt 1 999) and
now, instead of the machine's choice of 1 0
lL'ld5, I prefer one of 1 0 f3, 1 0 e3 o r 1 0
i.e2, all of which give White some edge.
7 c4
For 7 f4 sec Game 27. After 7 lL'lc3, This is the starting position for Games
7 ...b5 transposes to a position reached in 20-22.
Chapter 8 while 7 ... 1Vc7 leads to Chapter 6.
Game 20
Ulibin-Milov
Frankfurt (rapid) 1999

1 e4 c5 2 CiJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 CiJxd4 a6


5 .id3 CiJf6 6 0-0 d6 7 c4 .id7 8 CiJc3
CiJc6 9 CiJxc6 i.xc6 1 0 b3
Another move order employed to reach
the same position at move 12 is 10 1Ve2
e7 1 1 b3 0-0 1 2 b2.
1 0 . . . .ie7 1 1 .ib2 0-0 1 2 'iie 2
1 2 f4?! is a bit too early here and allows
Black a rypical break: 1 2. . . b5! (exploiting a

61
Sicilia n Ka n

gain in time associated with ... .id7 / . ..Ci'Jc6 provements over 1 8 'ifg4?! , Nunn gives 1 8
variations; Black has managed to play ... b7- 'if f3 while I prefer to flick i n 1 8 'ifhS! g6 1 9
b5 in one go, having not spent a tempo 'iff3. Both seem to give White good com
playing ... b6 earlier): pensation for the small material deficit.
a) 1 3 cxbS?! axbS 1 4 'iff3 (or 14 eS dxeS b) 12 ... 'ifb8 13 a4 .:te8 14 .:tact tt::ld7 1 5
15 fxeS 'ifd4+!) 14 ...'ifb6+ 15 ht 'il'b7 f4 .ih4 1 6 .:tdt .if6 was unclear in Nunn
and Black has strong pressure against e4, Bischoff, Dortmund 1 987. Nunn suggests
Konguvel-Kostenko, Calcutta 200 1 . that the more direct 13 f4 is stronger:
b) 1 3 'ife2 bxc4 1 4 .ixc4 d S 1 5 .id3 1 3 ...b5?! 14 cxbS axbS 1 5 eS is indeed good
dxe4 16 tt::lxe4 tt::lxe4 17 .ixe4 .ixe4 1 8 for White.
'il'xe4 'il'd2 was agreed drawn i n Sanchez 1 3 l:tad 1
Romero-Sospedra Sebastian, Aragon 1 996. O r 13 f4 'ifhS and now:
a) 14 .:tf3!? with a further split:
at) 14 ... d5?! 15 cxdS .icS+ 1 6 ht exdS
17 tt::lx dS tt::lx dS 18 exdS .:tfe8? 19 'ifc2
.ixdS 20 .:tg3 i.f8? 21 .:tgS was a quick win
for White in the game Tairi-Astrom, Swe
den League 2000, but Black was far too
adventurous too soon in the centre.
a2) One idea I like here is 14 ... i.d8!,
planning to redeploy the bishop more ac
tively on b6 (yet another hidden advantage
of forgoing ...b7-b6 in this line!). However,
Black must be careful to avoid tactics
against his king: 1 5 hl ! and now the im
1 2 . . . ii'a5! mediate 1 5 ... .ib6? lands Black in big trou
Revealing another pos10ve feature of ble:
forgoing ...b7-b6: the queen has access to
the aS-square. I believe it was the Bosnian
GM Emir Dizdarevic who first played this
move and more recently it has found favour
with both Rublevsky and Milov. One of
Black's main plans here is to swing the
queen across to hS to offer a trade. In gen
eral, Black's position becomes easier after
an exchange of queens as he doesn't have to
worry about a direct kingside assault by
White.
Alternatives include:
a) 12 ... l:.e8 13 f4 dS!? (13. ..tt::ld7 is safer)
1 4 cxdS exdS 1 5 eS tt::le4 1 6 tt::lxe4! dxe4 1 7 a21) 16 tt::la4? tt::lg4! 1 7 .:th3 tt::l f2 + 1 8
.ixe4 .ibS 1 8 'ifg4?! 'ifd2! 1 9 .ixh7+ when 'ifxf2 'ifxh3 1 9 tt::lxb6 'ifxd3 20 tt::lxa8 .:txa8
Black can take a draw with 1 9 ... xh7 20 e6 is fine for Black.
'ifxb2 21 'ifhS+ g8 22 'ifxf7+ h7 23 a22) 16 tt::ld S! exdS 17 .ixf6 dxe4 18 l:.g3
'ifhS+ or play on with 19 ...f8!? as in Ar and the best Black can do is 1 8...'il'g6 1 9
nason-Toshkov, Jurmala 1 987. As irn- lhg6 hxg6 20 .ixe4 gxf6, which is pretty

62
5 i.. d3 l?J f6 6 0 - 0 d6

gnm. 17 'iW2 ltJd7 1 8 g4 'ifh3 19 'ifg3 'i!Vxg3+ 20


Going back to Black's 1 5th move, much hxg3 t2Jb6 21 i.e2 i.e7 22 l:td4 l:ted8 23
stronger is the prophylactic 1 5 ...l:te8!, plan l:tfd1 i.e8 24 f4 i.f6 25 l:txd6 l:txd6 26
ning to answer 1 6 l:taft with 16 ...d5!. I be l:txd6 ltJxc4 27 i.xc4 l:txc4 28 eS i.e7 and
lieve Black has excellent counterplay in this Black slowly converted his two bishops
line. advantage in Zakic-Dizdarevic, Pula 1 990.
b) 1 4 'iWxhS ltJxhS 1 5 i.e2 1 5 ...tt"Jf6 1 6 b) 16 'iWd2 and now:
i.f3 l:tfd8 1 7 l:tadl ltJd7 1 8 i.a3 ltJcS 1 9 b1) 16 ... b5!? 17 cxbS axbS 18 f4?! i.d8
l:.d2 b 6 20 'iti> 2 'iti>f8 2 1 l:tfdt 'iti>e8 and 19 l:tf3 i.b6+ 20 'iti>h1 dS 21 exdS exdS 22
Black has equalised comfortably. In the i.xbS i.xbS 23 ltJxbS tt"Je4 24 'i!Vd3 ltJ2+
game Egger-Milov, Istanbul Olympiad 25 l:tx2 i.x2 worked out well for Black in
2000, White now blundered a pawn with 22 Dobrovolsky-Toshkov, Primorsko 1 987,
eS?! i.xf3 23 gxf3? dxeS 24 fxeS l:txd2+ 25 but I prefer 18 f3!, blunting Black's light
l:txd2 ltJxb3!. squared bishop. Black must be careful not
Black always has to watch out for ltJdS to be simply left with a weakness on bS.
ideas but here it doesn't work: 13 ltJdS? b2) 16 ...l:ted8 17 l:tfet i.e8 18 l:te3 'iWgS
exdS 14 exdS ltJxdS 1 5 cxdS 'iWxdS 16 f4 1 9 ltJe2 and the players opted for an 'early
l:tfe8 and Black was just a pawn up in Pe bath' in the game Psakhis-Rublevsky, Po
runovic-Cabrilo, Herceg Novi 200 1 . lanica Zdroj 1 997. It's true that not much is
13 . . . 'ii'h 5 going on in the final position.
Breaking on the queenside with 1 3 ... b5?!
now runs into 14 ltJdS!. It is possible, how
ever, to delay the offer of the queen ex-
change: 13 ...l:tfe8!? 1 4 a3 l:tac8 1 5 b4 and
only now t S ...'iWhS!.

1 4 f3
As I stated before, I don't believe that
White gains much from avoiding the queen
exchange, although Black has nothing to
fear there either: 14 'iWxhS ltJxhS 1 5 i.a3
It does seem worthwhile for Black to l:tfd8 and now:
wait if White is simply going to force the a) 1 6 i.bl tt"Jf4! 1 7 g3 ('/z-1/z Almasi
issue with a2-a3 and b3-b4, so maybe White Milov, Groningen 1 998) 17 ...ltJg6 1 8 f4 bS
should contemplate something different on 19 l:td2 l:.ab8 20 cxbS axbS 21 i.b4 dS and
move 14 and 1 5. Anyway, after 1 S ...'iWhS Black has equalised.
White has played: b) 1 6 eS!? 'iti>f8 (16 ...ltJf4? 17 i.e4! is
a) 1 6 f3 (White gains nothing by avoiding good for White) 17 f4 (1 7 i.e2?! is met by
a queen exchange in this manner) 1 6 ...i.d8! 17 ...ltJf4!, intending 1 8 exd6 i.f6!) 17 ... dxe5

63
Sicilian Kan

1 8 .ixe7 + <3i;xe7 19 fxe5 f5 with equality -


Milov. Game 21
1 4 . . J:Ue8 1 5 Wh 1 tt:ld7 Lastin-Rublevsky
Moscow (blit0 200 1

Normally one shouldn't take too much


notice of blitz (5 minute) games, but this
particular one is of remarkably good quality
and is also theoretically important.
1 e4 c5 2 tt:lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt:lxd4 a6
5 d3 tt:lf6 6 0-0 d6 7 c4 d7 8 tt:lc3
tt:lc6 9 tt:lxc6 ..txc6 1 0 'i!f'e2 i.e7 1 1 .l:td 1

1 6 i.b 1 ? !
This allows a thematic break, but it's al
ready difficult to suggest a suitable plan for
White. The natural one is f3-f4, but this
allows an exchange of queens, while 16 ife1
can be met effectively by 1 6 ... b5!.
16 . . . b5! 1 7 cxb5 axb5 18 f4?!
This is like an admission that White's
previous play has been a failure. The result
ing endgame is good for Black, one of the A different approach. White immediately
reasons being that White always has weak makes his mark on the half-open d-file.
nesses on the queenside. These make easy 1 1 . . .tt:ld7
targets and it means that, unlike Black, Blocking the d-ftle and thus ruling out
White cannot easily exploit his pawn major e4-e5 ideas. Alternatively:
ity. a) 1 1 ...0-0?! 1 2 e5! is problematic for
I prefer the more ambitious 1 8 b4, which Black, as 1 2... dxe5 allows 1 3 .ixh7+ .
at least fixes Black's b-pawn. b) 1 1 ...'ilf'a5 1 2 .if4 0-0 1 3 a 3 and now:
1 8 . . .'i!f'xe2 1 9 tt:lxe2 tt:lc5 20 e5 dxe5 2 1 b 1) 13 ... .l:.fe8?! 14 h3! (preventing a later
xe5 e4 2 2 J:ld2 xb 1 2 3 .l:txb1 f6 24 ...lt::lg4) 14 ...ifh5 1 5 ife3 ltJd7? (Dolmatov
d4 l:!.ed8 25 tt:lg3 Wf7 26 l:tbd 1 f5 27 gives 1 5 ...'ilf'c5 as an improvement but
e5 .l:txd2 28 l:!.xd2 f6 29 xf6 Wxf6 White is still clearly better after 1 6 'ilf'd2) 1 6
30 Wg1 g5 3 1 fxg5 + Wxg5 32 tt:le2 e5 .ie2 ifc 5 1 7 ifg3 'lib6 1 8 b4 lt::lf6 1 9 .ixd6
33 .l:td5 J:lxa2 34 J:lxc5 l:txe2 35 Wf 1 .ixe4 20 .ie5 20 ... .ig6 21 c5 'lia7 22 'lie3
.U.b2 36 l1xe5 l1xb3 37 l:!.e7 h5 38 Wf2 and White's pieces dominate the board,
b4 39 .l:tg7 + 'it>f4 40 g3 + We5 41 .l:tb7 Dolmatov-S.Kovacevic, Ubeda 2000.
We4 42 l:!.e7 + Wd5 43 l:!.f7 .l:tb2 + 44 b2) 1 3 ...'ilf'h5 14 'lixh5 lt::lx h5 1 5 .ie3
Wf3 J:lxh2 45 .l:txf5 + 'iti>c4 46 l:!.f8 b3 47 lt::l f6 16 f3 lt::ld7 17 .ifl .l:.fd8 1 8 b4 b6 1 9
.l:tb8 Wc3 48 l1c8 + 'it>d3 49 .l:td8 + Wc2 .l:h2 <31;[8 20 .l:.ad2 (White has a n edge in
50 .l:tc8 + 'iti>d 1 5 1 l:ld8 + 'it>c1 52 .l:tc8 + this ending; his bishop is much better
l1c2 53 l:lh8 l:lc5 0-1 placed on e3, where it annoys the b6-pawn,

64
5 i.. d3 f:D f6 6 0 - 0 d 6

than it would be on b2 - compare with 1 4 cS?! releases the tension too soon:
Game 20) 20 ...gS?! 21 .if2 f6 22 lt:le2 fl 14 ... 'ifb8 1 S cxd6 .ixd6 16 .ig3 l:td8 and
23 lt:ld4 .ib7 Black is equal, Klovans-Milov, Biel 1 999.
14 . . . 'ii'b8 1 5 a4
1 S .ig3 l:.c8 1 6 cS?! is again premature:
16 ... .ie8 1 7 f4 lt:lg6 18 cxd6 .ixd6 19 eS
i.e? 20 <io>h1 i.c6 21 h4 lt:le7, when Black
has no weaknesses and a nice bishop on c6,
Korneev-Rublevsky, St. Petersburg 1 996.
Instead of 16 cS, ECO gives 16 a4 and as
sesses this as slightly better for White.
1 5 . . . c8
1 S ... b6 1 6 i.e3 l:tc8 1 7 b3 .ie8 1 8 h3
lt:lc6 1 9 .if4 lt:leS 1/2-1/2 Lascin-Rublevsky,
Herceg Novi 2000 was the previous 'battle'
between these two players in this line. In
24 cS!! bxcS 2S lt:lxe6! Wxe6 26 i.c4+ dS stead of 16 i.e3, White can continue with
27 l:txdS .ixdS 28 .ixdS+ <io>d6 29 .ixa8+ the plan in the main game with 1 6 i.g3.
tic? 30 .idS cxb4 31 l:tcl + <lo>b8 32 axb4 1 6 i.. g 3 i..eS 1 7 ..ta2 'ii'a 7 1 8 'iti>h 1 'ii'b 6
i.xb4 33 l:tc6 aS 34 l:ta6 l:tc8 3S .ig3+ The earlier game Lastin-Landa, Tomsk
lLleS 36 l:txf6 and White went on to win in 2001 continued 1 8... 'ifcS!?, trying to induce
Korneev-S.Kovacevic, N avalmoral 1 999. White into playing b2-b3 and thus killing
c) 1 1 ...'ifb8!? (Fedorowicz prefers this the a2-bishop. Instead White initiated tre
move to 1 1 ...lt:ld7) 1 2 .i f4 b6 (12... 0-0 1 3 mendous complications with 19 f4!? lt:lxc4!?
lL'ldS! .ixdS 1 4 cxdS exdS 1 S exdS is a bit 20 b3 lt:le3 (20 ... lt:lb6 21 liJdS 'ifxcl 22
better for White, Emunds-S.Bohm, corre lt:lxe7+ <io>f8 23 lt:lxc8 'ifxc8 24 l:.xd6 looks
spondence 1 993) 1 3 liJdS!? (13 cS!? is also better for White) 21 l:td3 dS 22 b4 'ifxb4 23
interesting) 1 3. ..exdS 14 cxdS! .ib7 'ifxe3 dxe4 24 l:tdd1 'ifa3 with a posicion
(14 ... .id7 1 S eS!) 1 S eS 0-0! ( 1 S ... dxeS? 1 6 which is very difficult to assess. White has
i.xeS 'ifd8 1 7 .ixf6 gxf6 1 8 d6 is very an extra knight but some coordination
strong) 1 6 exf6 .ixf6 1 7 'ife4 g6 1 8 'ifb4 problems. Black has three extra pawns but
l:td8 1 9 .ie4 aS! 20 'ifxb6 .ia6 21 .ie3 l:te8 no dangerous pawn majority. One thing that
22 i.3 .ixb2 23 l:tab1 'ifxb6 24 .ixb6 can be said is that Lastin was prepared to
i.c3 and Black had equalised in Vokarev face 1 8 ... 'ii'c S again, albeit in a blitz game!
Ionescu, Bucharest 1 998. 1 9 f4! t:Dc6 20 f5!?
1 2 i-f4 0-0 1 3 l:t.ac1 t:De5 This is a very dangerous plan. White in
In many ways this is the most natural tends to give the bishop on a2 his life back!
move here, but it's not totally obvious that 20 . . . t:Db4 21 fxe6 fxe6
Black has to block the diagonal: 1 3 ...l:.e8 1 4 Given what happens in the game, Black
.ib1 .igS 1 S .ixgS 'ifxgS 1 6 'ii'd2 (or 1 6 should seriously consider 21 ... lt:lxa2!? here.
:c2!? 'ii'c S 1 7 l:tcd2 lLleS 1 8 b 3 bS!) After 22 exfl + i.xfl 23 lt:lxa2 'ii'b3 Black
16 ... 'ii'xd2 17 l:txd2 lL'lb6 1 8 b3 lt:lc8 1 9 lt:le2 regains his pawn and is only a little worse.
b6 20 lt:ld4 .ib7 21 a4 Wf8 22 aS bxaS 23 22 c5!
l:ta2 lt:lb6 24 l:txaS and White was just a tiny This pawn sacrifice releases the a2-
bit better in Turov-Kozlov, Decin 1 998. bishop and now both White's bishops angle
14 i.. b 1 beautifully across the board.

65
Sicilian K a n

ltJc6 9 ltJxc6 xc6 1 0 b4!?

2 2 . . . dxc5 2 3 a5 'ii'c 6 2 4 ..tc4 dB 25


f1 f7? There are three points to this ambitious
2S ... i.d7 (Fedorowicz) is a stronger de move. Firstly, Black now has to be on a
fence but I would still very much prefer to constant lookout for b4-bS from White,
be White: 26 1i'g4 l:t8 27 i.eS g6 28 h4!, especially as the knight on f6 often ends up
planning h4-hS, looks good. on d7. Secondly, Black is denied access to
26 'ii'g 4 l:UB 27 e5 g6 28 'ii'f4 g5 29 the aS-square which, as we have seen in
'ii'g4 h5 30 'ii'h 3 adS previous games, is a handy place for the
queen. Thirdly, White prepares to fianchetto
with i.b2. So far so good for White, but
there is a downside. By moving the b-pawn
two squares instead of one, the c4-pawn is
denied protection from its partner and can
prove to be a liability on the half-open c
f!.le. Whether Black can become active
enough to exploit this is another question.
1 0 . . . b6
The safest reply; Black gives his bishop a
secure retreat to b 7. However, Black can
also simply develop with 10 ... i.e7 and now:
a) 1 1 bS!? (critical, but White has yet to
31 xf7! xf7 32 xe6 ltJd3 33 xf7 + come up with an advantage after this move)
xf7 34 .l:l.f 1 + eB 35 'ii'x h5 + d7 36 1 1 ...i.d7 1 2 a4 (12 i.e3 axbS 13 cxbS "iVaS
'ii'h 3 + 'ii'e 6 37 'ii'x d3 + cB 38 'ii'g 3 14 i.d2 1i'a3 1 S l:tb 1 0-0 1 6 l:tb3 "iVa7 1 7 b6
'ii'c4 39 'ii'g 4 + .U.d7 40 d 1 ..td6 4 1 1i'b8 18 i.bS l:tc8 19 a4 i.d8 20 i.f4 i.xb6
xd6 1 -0 21 i.xd6 i.c7 22 i.xd7 l:td8! 23 tiJbS was
agreed drawn in Savanovic-Ionescu, Bijel-
Game 22 jina Dvorovi 2002; 23 ... i.xd6 24 1i'xd6
Khalifman-Rublevsky l:txd7 is very drawish) 1 2...0-0 1 3 i.e3 1i'c7
Kazan 200 1 14 aS axbS 1 S i.b6 "iVc8 1 6 tDxbS i.c6 1 7
._______________. tt:Ja7 1i'd7 1 8 tDxc6 1i'xc6 1 9 1i'a4 1i'c8 20
1 e4 c5 2 ltJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ltJxd4 a6 "iVbS tiJd7 21 l:tfb1 i.f6 22 l:ta3 tt:Jxb6 23
5 d3 ltJf6 6 0-0 d6 7 c4 d7 8 ltJc3 1i'xb6 i.d8 24 1i'xb7 was another draw in

66
5 i. d3 Ci:J f6 6 0 - 0 d 6

Lobzhanidze-Lastin, Kstovo 1 997. 1 3 . . . Ci:Jd7


b) I can't find any examples of 1 1 i.b2, In later games Black instead played
but after 1 1 ...0-0 12 1i'e2 it's not clear 1 3 ...'iic 7 14 f4 and now:
whether Black can achieve anything by de a) 14 ... l:.ad8?! (I believe the rook should
laying ... b7-b6 any further. instead be on c8, hitting c4) 1 5 hl i.b7
1 1 i.b2 i.e7 16 l:tf3! g6 17 l:th3 lLJd7? 18 lLJbS!! and
This is not forced. Black could try to take Black resigned in Kindermann-Thesing,
the sting out of a possible kingside attack Bundesliga 2001 because of 1 8 ... axb5 1 9
from White by fianchettoing, although of 'iVhS!. This i s a great illustration of the dan
course there are then potential problems gers that await Black in this line.
with the defence of d6. Nevertheless, b) 14 ...l:tac8 1 5 .U.f3 .U.fd8 16 l:th3 h6 1 7
1 1 ...g6!? 12 1i'e2 i.g7 13 l:.ad1 1i'e7 .U.g3 i.b7 1 8 a3 a S 1 9 eS dxeS 20 fxe5 lLJe8
(13...0-0 14 eS! dxeS 1 5 i.xg6 is promising 21 lLJbS 1i'b8 (Luther-Rublevsky, World
for White, as is 13 ...1i'c7? 1 4 lLJdS!) 1 4 bS Team Ch., Yerevan 2001) and here Rublev
axbS 1 5 cxbS i.b7 16 1i'e3 1i'd8 17 i.e2 0-0 sky gives 22 i.cl axb4 23 axb4 i.xb4 24
18 i.f3 .U.e8 19 eS lLJdS 20 lLJxdS exdS 21 i.xh6 with a clear advantage for White.
i.xdS i.xdS 22 .U.xdS i.xeS saw Black Rublevsky mentions no improvements for
equalising in Cheparinov-S.Kovacevic, Dos Black in this line so we should assume that
Hermanas 2002. White is better after 13 ...'iic 7.
1 2 'i!fe2 0-0 1 3 l:lad 1 14 f4 i.b7

It should be pointed out that this line is Preparing to pressurise the c-pawn. The
very similar to the one studied in Vogt line 1 4... l:.c8 1 5 .U.f3 i.b7 1 6 l:th3 would
Gheorghiu (Game 25), but with two differ transpose to the note to Black's 1 6 th move,
ences: White has not committed himself to while 14 ... i.f6? gives Black problems with
playing hl , and White's b-pawn is on b4 d6: 1 5 i.c2 1i'c7 1 6 'iVd3 (Stohl) and Black
rather than b3. The first difference is obvi is faced with threats of 'iix d6 and e4-e5.
ously favourable for White as he may well 1 5 l:lf3
be able to do without 'it>h1 , using the extra Here comes a typical rook swinger!
tempo in his kingside attacking ambitions. White is going straight for the throat on the
The second difference, though, favours kingside.
Black; the c4-pawn can become quite vul 15 . . . g6
nerable down the half-open c-ftle, especially A prophylactic measure against l:th3 fol
if White plays the 'normal' retreat i.b 1 . lowed by c4-e5. At some point Black will

67
Sicilian Kan

also want to bolster his kingside with ... i.f6- b) 21 ...i.xe5? 22 i.xe5 l2Jxe5 23 lLlf6+.
g7 or ... l:.eB and ... i.f8. 22 ll'lf6 + i.xf6 2 3 exf6
16 :h3 Now White has mating threats with 'ii'c 3-
h6. Black does extremely well to last as long
as he does.
23 . . . e5 24 l:r.f3 l::.fd8 25 .l:f.d5!
But not 25 'ii'e 3? on account of
25 ...'ii'xc4 26 'ii'h6 lLlxf6!.
25 . . . h5 26 l:.fd3 ll'lf8
26 ... lLlxf6? 27 'ifxe5! 'ifxeS 2B l:.xdB+
'ii'e B 29 i.xf6 and 26 ... 'ii'xc4? 27 'ii'd2 both
win for White.
27 'ikxe5 'ikxe5 28 i.xe5 :xd5 29 .l:f.xd5

1 6 . . . i.f6?
This move allows a tactical breakthrough,
after which White converts his initiative into
a concrete advantage.
The only consistent way to play is with
1 6 ... l:.cB! and now, as Slovakian GM Igor
Stohl has shown, no combinations work for
White:
a) 17 liJdS? (this works against 17 .. .'ific7
but not when the queen is on dB) 17 ... exd5
1 B 'WhS gxhS 19 l:.g3+ i.gS!. Okay, Black has survived into an end
b) 1 7 eS?! dxeS 1 B i.e4 'Wc7 and White game, but the extra pawn is always going to
has no good way to continue. be a winner.
c) Rublevsky gives 1 7 i.b1 with a 'clear 29 . . . ll'le6 30 c5 bxc5 3 1 bxc5 l:.c8 32
advantage to White' but it's not totally ob d6 g5 33 'it>f2 'ith7 34 e7 'it>g6 35
vious how White strengthens his position, 'it>e3 l::. b8 36 l:!.d2 'itf5 37 'it>d3 l:!.b4 38
while Black can improve his defences with 'it>c3 :b1 39 'it>c4 .l:f.c1 + 40 'itd5 h4 41
... l:teB and possibly ...i.f8. c6 g4 42 'it>d6 g3 43 hxg3 hxg3 44 'it>d7
1 7 e5! l::.c 3 45 d6 'it>xf6 46 c7 1 -0
Both players should always be looking
out for this move. Game 23
1 7 . . . dxe5 1 8 i.e4 'ikc7 Shirov-Rublevsky
Or 1B ... i.xe4 19 lLlxe4 i.g7 20 l:.hd3 Montecatini Terme 2000
l:.a7 21 i.xeS 'WeB 22 i.xg7 xg7 23 l:.d6
and White's pressure is becoming unbear 1 e4 c5 2 lt:'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ll'lxd4 a6
able. 5 i.d3 ll'lf6 6 0-0 d6 7 c4 d7 8 ll'lc3
1 9 i.xb7 'ikxb7 20 ll'le4 g7 21 fxe5 ll'lc6 9 e3
'ikc7 The only real alternative to 9 lLlxc6.
Or: White defends the knight on d4 and devel
a) 21 ...lLlxe5? 22 liJd6!. ops another piece.

68
5 i. d3 0. t 6 6 0 - 0 d6

1 0 f4
10 nct is less threatening: 10 ...0-0 1 1
"ii'e 2 lDe5 1 2 i..b 1 "ifc7 1 3 b3 lDeg4 1 4 i..g5
"ii'c 5 1 5 l2Jf3 h6 and Black was fine in the
game Balashov-Liberzon, Palma de Mal
lorca 1 989.
1 0 . . . 0-0
Black can also go for an immediate
counter-attack with 10 ...l2Jxd4 1 1 i..xd4 e5!?
12 fxe5 dxe5 13 i..xe5 and now:
a) 13 ...l2Jg4 (Hawelko-Adamski, Polish
Ch. 1 987) and now 14 i..d 4! looks good:
14 ..."ii'c 7? 1 5 e5! i..c 5 16 i.. f5!.
9 . . . i.e7 b) 13. ..i..c 5+ 1 4 'it>h 1 l2Jg4 15 i..g3 lDe3
An important alternative here is 9 ... l2Je5!? 1 6 "ii'h 5 lDxfl 1 7 nxfl i..e 6 1 8 l2Jd5 i..d6
10 i..e 2 and now: 19 i..h 4!? (Hawelko) and now after
a) 10 ... i..e7 is sensible: 1 1 f4 lDg6 1 2 1 9 ..."ii'b 8 I like the move 20 e5!. White cer
'it>h1 0-0 1 3 "ifd2 e5! 1 4 fxe5 (or 1 4 lDf5 tainly has a strong attack.
exf4! 1 5 i..x f4 i..xf5 1 6 exf5 l2Jxf4 1 7 1:hf4 1 1 h 1 0.xd4 1 2 i.xd4 i.c6 1 3 'ife2
d5! 1 8 cxd5 i..d 6 1 9 .I:tffl .te5! followed by 0.d7
..."ifd6, ...nfe8 and ... nac8 [Fogarasi] when
Black has good dark-squared compensation
for the pawn) 1 4...dxe5 1 5 ltJfS i..b4! and
Black's counterplay against e4 compensates
for White's powerful knight on f5, Acs
Fogarasi, Budapest 1 998.
b) 1 0.. J:tc8!? and now:
b1) 1 1 f4!? lDxc4 1 2 i..xc4 nxc4 1 3 e5 is
an interesting pawn sacrifice. In the game
Renet-Adamski, Katowice 1 992, White got
a strong attack after 1 3 ...l2Jg8 1 4 "ii'e 2 d5 1 5
fS.
b2) 1 1 b3 with a further split:
b21) 1 1 ...b5 1 2 f4 l2Jg6 1 3 lDc2 i..e7 14 Black has reached his typical defensive
a4 with an edge to White, Shorr-Hjartarson, set-up. Compared to previous games in this
Amsterdam 1 99 1 . chapter, White has gained a bit of time be
b22) 1 1 ..."ii'a5 1 2 nct ( 1 2 i..d2 "ifc5 1 3 cause the exchange of knights occurred on
i..e3 "ii'a 5 1 4 i..d2 "ii'c 5 1 5 lD3 i.. e7 1 6 nc1 d4 instead of c6. On the other hand, the
0-0 17 i..e3 "ii'a5 was equal in Koch bishop on d4 is not ideally placed; it can be
Cramling, Haifa 1 989) 1 2... -te7 13 f4 lDc6 hit by a timely ... e6-e5.
14 i.. f3 0-0 1 5 "ii'd2 lDxd4 1 6 i..xd4 i..c 6 1 7 1 4 l:!.ad 1 e5!
nfd1 'it>h8 1 8 "ii' 2 b 5 1 9 e 5 dxe5 20 fxe5 Black gives up the d5-square but secures
l2Jd7 21 cxb5 axb5 and Black had equalised e5. This is a reasonable trade, especially
in Tondivar-Adamski, Giessen 1 994, even since the bishop on c6 is ready to chop on
though it seems a little strange to carry out d5 as soon as the white knight arrives.
the manoeuvre ...lDc6-e5-c6! 1 5 .ie3 exf4 1 6 .ixf4 0.e5

69
Sicilia n Kan

1 6 ...'ifa5 1 7 lDd5 .i.xd5 1 8 exd5 l:Iae8 19 lDxa8 lha8 24 l:Id 1 t2Jd3! 25 .i.xd3 .i.xf4
'ifc2 h6 20 ..tf5 lDf6 21 a3?! lDh5 22 b4 26 .i.xb5 - Shirov.
'ifd8! 23 .tel i.g5 24 .i.b2 .i.f6 equalised 20 . . . .tb5 2 1 'ifh5 f6 22 l:tf4
for Black in Hernandez-Christiansen, Phila 22 lDxf6+?! l:txf6 23 .i.xe5 llxfl + 24
delphia 1 998, but I like White after the l:txfl 'ir'e6 25 i.b3 .i.c4 is a bit better for
more ambitious 21 c5!. Black; White's attack has run out of steam
1 7 .tc2 and he is left with more pawn islands.
Lining up an enticing sacrificial idea. 22 . . . g6 23 'ifh6
Also worth attention is Ribli's suggestion
of 17 l2Jd5!? .i.xd5 1 8 .i.xe5! (18 exd5 .i.f6
is very solid for Black) and now:
a) 1 8 ... .i.e6 19 .i.c3 is favourable for
White, who can attack with e4-e5.
b) 18 ... dxe5 19 exd5 looks pleasant for
White, although after 1 9 ...'ifd6 (19... ..td6 20
'ir'c2 g6 21 c5 l:tc8 22 b4 is tremendous for
White) 20 l:tdel f6 21 ..tf5 g6 22 i.e6+
g7 it's also difficult for White to improve
his position.
1 7 . . . 'ifc7 1 8 c5!?

23 . . . l:tad8!
Imaginative play by Rublevsky, who cal
culates that he will obtain enough compen
sation for the queen.
24 lLlxf6 + l:txf6 25 l:txd6 l:tfxd6 26 l:tf1 !
i.f8?
Undoing the previous good work. Shirov
suggests 26 ...g5! and now:
a) 27 'ir'h5? .i.xfl 28 .i.xe5 l:tg6 29 i.c3
b5 30 e5 .i.d3 31 i.xd3 llxd3 and the ex
change of bishops leaves the position in
Black's favour.
Sacrificing a pawn in order to undermine b) 27 'ir'h3 .i.xfl 28 .i.xe5, which Shirov
the support for the e5-knight and open lines assesses as unclear.
for the light-squared bishop. 27 'ifc1 .ixf1 28 .ixe5 l:te6?
1 8 .i.xe5 dxe5 19 t2Jd5 .i.xd5 20 exd5 g6 28 ... ..tc4 limits the damage.
gives White an inferior version of note 'b' 29 'ifxf1 J:txe5 30 .ib3 + c4 3 1 'ifxc4 +
to White's 1 7th move. 'it>g7 32 'iic 7 + 1 -0
1 8 . . . dxc5 1 9 lLld5 'iid 6
19 ... .i.xd5? loses after 20 exd5 .i.d6 (or Game 24
20... f6 21 'ir'e4 g6 22 d6 .i.xd6 23 'ir'd5+) 21 Timman-Kengis
i.xe5 .i.xe5 22 d6! .i.xd6 23 'ir'd3. Yerevan O(ympiad 1996
20 .ig3
20 t2Jb6 leads to a drawing ending after 1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6
20... ..tb5 21 'ir'xb5 axb5 22 l:hd6 ..txd6 23 5 .id3 lLlf6 6 0-0 d6 7 c4 g6

70
5 Ji.. d3 rt:J f6 6 0 - 0 d 6

After this move we reach positions simi after 1 6...b7 1 7 fl) 1 6 ... f6 (16...tt:Jxc4!?)
lar to those in Games 1 -8 with two subtle 1 7 e3 tLlf7 1 8 tLla4 :b8 1 9 'ifb4 and
differences: White's queen is on d1 instead Black was in some trouble in Nyysti
of e2, and Black's queen is also at home Cabrilo, Belgrade 2002.
(instead of c7). I believe that this difference a2) 9 ... 0-0 10 i. f4 and now:
works in White's favour. White's most ob a21) 10 ...tLlc6 1 1 h3!, followed by 'ii'd 2.
vious plan of action is pressure down the a22) 10 ... tt:Jg4 1 1 i.e2 tLle5 12 tLlxe5!
half-open d-ftle against Black's vulnerable dxe5 13 'ifxd8 :xd8 14 g5 f6 (14 ...:e8?!
d6-pawn so the white queen is clearly well 15 tLla4 tLlc6 16 tLlb6 l:r.b8 17 c5 left Black
placed on either d1 or d2, allowing a dou struggling to complete development in Yu
bling on the ftle with _:.dl . Casting our dasin-Movsesian, Pula 1 997) 15 :fd 1 d7
minds back to Chapter 1 , White would of 16 e3 l:tc8 17 :acl is a bit better for
ten eventually play the move 'ife2-d2 any White; Black will find it hard to utilise the
way, thus effectively losing a move. In the d4-outpost.
line here, White generally manages to put a23) 10 ... tLlh5 1 1 g5 'ifc7 12 'ifd2 tLld7
earlier pressure on d6 and it's more difficult 1 3 :acl with a typical edge for White,
for Black to reach an ideal defensive set-up. Aseev-Kochyev, St. Petersburg 1 995. Hav
8 rt:Jc3 Ji.. g 7 ing played 'ifd1 -d2 in one go, White is ef
fectively a tempo up on similar lines consid
ered in Chapter 1 .
b) 9 tLlb3!? is recommended i n the popu
lar Beating the Sicilian series by John Nunn
and Joe Gallagher. 9 ... 0-0 10 i.e2 and:
b1) 10 ...'ife7 1 1 f4 l:.d8 12 'ifd2 tLlc6
13 l:.fd1 tLle8 14 i.e3 l:tb8 (or 14 ...tLlf6 1 5
b6 l:td7 1 6 'ife3 and Black is in a tangle,
Gallagher-Gokhale, Sangli 2000) 1 5 i.b6
tLlc7 1 6 .l:tacl and White has a pleasant ad
vantage, Lutz-Cvitan, Passau 1 997.
b2) 1 O ...tLlc6 1 1 f4 tLle8 (1 1 ...tLle5 12
c5 tLle8 transposes to note 'b23') 12 c5! (12
9 JigS 'ifd2 b6 13 .l:tfd1 tLle5 14 :acl 'ifc7 was
Not the only move by any means. White equal in Nunn-Gheorghiu, Vienna 1 986)
has two dangerous alternatives:
a) 9 tt:J3 aims for a similar set-up to the
one considered in Games 1 -5:
a1) 9 ...tt:Jc6 1 0 h3! (10 f4 tLlg4 1 1 'ifd2
0-0 1 2 e2 tt:Jge5 1 3 l:tfd1 tLlx3+ 1 4 x3
tLld4 1 5 e2 'ifc7 1 6 l:r.acl d7 1 7 fl
i.c6 and Black had managed to equalise in
Tsuboi-Hernandez, Havana 1 998) 10 ...tt:Jd7
(or 1 0 ... 0-0 1 1 f4) 1 1 g5 'ifc7 1 2 :c1
0-0 13 'ifd2 tLlce5 1 4 tLlxe5 tLlxe5 1 5 :fd1
(1 5 b3!?) 1 5...b6 ( 1 5 ...tt:Jxc4 1 6 xc4 'ifxc4
1 7 'ifxd6 is awkward for Black) 1 6 fl (16
b3 avoids any complications; I like White

71
Sicilian Ka n

and now: White's position is much the easier to


b21) 1 2 ... e5 13 i..e 3 i.. e6 1 4 ll'ld5 i..xd5 play. He could try to attack the weak dark
15 exd5 ll'le7 (FeBland-Micklethwaite, cor squares on the kingside, but much the safer
respondence 1 994) and here I like the sim bet is to concentrate on the queenside, spe
ple 16 .l:tc t , which looks pleasant for White. cifically the weaknesses on d6 and b6.
b22) 12 ... dxc5 13 'iix dB ll'lxdB 14 ll'la4! 1 6 . . . 'ii'c 5 1 7 f3 J:.fe8 1 8 .l:tfd1 lt'le5 1 9
e5 (Nevanlinna-Seeman, Jyvaskyla 2001) lt'la4 'ii'a 5?!
and now I like the look of 15 i..e 3! ll'le6 (or Obviously, this is not really what Black
15 ... c4 1 6 ll'lb6 l:tbB 17 ll'lc5) 1 6 ll'lb6 .l:tbB wants to do. 1 9 ... 1Wc7 20 iVb4 looks trou
1 7 ll'lxc5. blesome for Black, but after 20... .l:tb8! I
b23) 12 ... ll'le5 13 i..e 3 f5 14 f4 ll'lf7 and can't find anything too devastating for
here I think White should play 1 5 exf5! (15 White.
i.. O fxe4 1 6 i..xe4 d5 was a quick draw in 20 'ii'x a5 bxa5 21 c5 dxc5 22 lt:\xc5
Gallagher-Cvitan, Cannes 1 996; signifi i.c8 23 g 1 !
cantly, though, Cvitan moved onto 10 ...'ii'e7 Bringing the king into the game.
for his next encounter) 1 5 ... exf5 16 i.. O and 23 . . . g5 24 f2 g8 25 e3
Black has problems moving his pieces from
the back rank.
9 . . . lt'lbd7 1 0 J:.c1
1 0 iVd2 0-0 11 .l:tad1 1Wc7 1 2 b3 b6 13
i..b 1 .U.e8 14 ll'lde2 i.. f8 15 'it>h1 i..b7 1 6 f4
was perhaps a little better for White in
Tompa-Bellon Lopez, Metz 1 985, but I
prefer Tirnman's handling of the position.
1 0 . . . 'ii'c 7 1 1 b3 0-0 1 2 'ii'd 2

White is in control. Only by a mixture of


heroic defence by Black and inaccurate play
by White does the game end in a draw.
25 . . . .l:td6 26 lt:\e2 llxd 1 27 l.txd 1 lt'lfd7
28 llc 1 lLlb6 29 ..td3 l:!.d8 30 l.tc3 f5 3 1
g3 fxe4 3 2 .be4 f7 3 3 lt'ld4 f6 34
a4 h5 35 l.tc2 h4 36 gxh4 gxh4 37 J:.g2
lLld5 + 38 ..txd5 exd5 39 f4 lt:\g4 + 40
f3 lt'lh6 41 lt:\c6 l:!.e8 42 lt:\e5 ..tt5 43
1 2 . . . b6?! J:.d2 .l:td8 44 e3 h3 45 f3 ..te4 + 46
I would be tempted to play 12 .. Je8 here, f2 f5 4 7 lt'lxe4 xf4 48 lt'lc6 Y2 - Y2
planning to meet 13 .ih6 with 13 ... i..h 8!. It
seems that with the exchange of the dark Game 25
squared bishops, Black loses much of the Vogt-Gheorghiu
potential counterplay in his position. Hambur;g 1984
1 3 ..th6! ..tb7 1 4 ..txg7 xg7 1 5 i.b1
J:.ad8 16 h 1 1 e4 c5 2 lt:\f3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:\xd4 a6

72
5 d 3 l1J f6 6 0 - 0 d6

5 .td3 l1Jt6 6 0-0 d6 7 c4 e7 though: 11 fS eS 1 2 lbc2 lbcS isn't so bad


Again we eventually arrive at this classical for Black on this occasion as the bishop is
development from Black. Variations here not particularly well placed on e3) 1 1 lbxc6
should be compared closely to those in (the more restrained 1 1 'iff3 looks stronger)
Games 9- 1 1 , and of course there are many 1 1 .....txc6 1 2 eS!? dxeS 1 3 fxeS lbd7 14
transpositional possibilities. 'ii'g4 (14 .l:txf?? loses to 1 4...'it>xf7 1S 'ifhS+
Other possibilities for Black include: 'it>g8 16 .l:tf1 'ife8!) 14 ... g6 1 S 'ii'g3 (or 1 S
a) 7...lbbd7 8 lbc3 b6 is possible, but .l:txf7 xf7 1 6 .l:tfl + 'it>g7 1 7 'ifxe6 .l:tf8!
then White can exploit the fact that Black Gheorghiu) 1 S ...'ifc7 1 6 i.d4 lbcS 1 7 ..tc2
has committed his knight to d7 so early: 9 .l:td8 1 8 l:tad 1 0-0 1 9 'ife3 .l:txd4! 20 'ifxd4
a4! ..tb7 10 aS and White breaks up Black's lbd7! 21 'iff4 lbxeS and Black has excellent
structure: 1 0... ..te7 (lO... bxaS 1 1 lbb3!) 1 1 compensation for the exchange, Kinder
..te3! (1 1 axb6?! allows 1 1 ...'ifxb6 1 2 lbb3 mann-Gheorghiu, Zurich 1 984.
.l:tb8!, planning to meet lbaS with ... ..taB, c) 9 f4 and now:
Dolmatov-Loginov, USSR 1 983) 1 1 ...0-0 1 2 cl) 9 ...lbc6 10 lbxc6 i.xc6 1 1 'ife2 ..te7
axb6 lbxb6 1 3 lbb3 and White is better. 1 2 b3 0-0 13 i.b2 leads to note 'b' to
b) An important alternative is for Black White's 1 1 th move. A plus for White is that
to choose first to fianchetto on the queen he has not committed his king to h 1 .
side. Although this sometimes simply trans c2) 9 ...l2Jbd7 allows White to force the
poses, there are some independent points to issue with 10 fS! . As we have seen before,
remember: 7 ... b6 8 lbc3 ..tb7 the type of position reached after 10 ... eS 1 1
lbc2 is generally better for White.
c3) 9 ... ..te7 1 0 fS!' (10 'it>h 1 0-0 1 1 'ife2,
reaching the main game, is of course possi
ble) 10 ... lbc6 1 1 ..te3 lbxd4 12 ..txd4 0-0
13 fxe6 fxe6 14 'ife2 h8 1 5 l:tad1 l2Jd7 1 6
.l:txf8+ 'ifxf8 1 7 lba4 ..tf6 1 8 ..txf6 'ifxf6 19
'ife3 .l:td8! and White was just a tiny bit bet
ter in Adams-Ivanchuk, Linares 2002.
c4) 9 ... g6!? is obviously risky but totally
thematic; Black answers the 2-f4 lunge with
a fianchetto. This is a favourite of the Ro
manian GM Constantin Ionescu.

and now:
a) 9 a4!? lbc6! (9 ... lbbd7?! 10 aS! trans
poses to note 'a' above, but 9 ... ..te7, keep
ing the option of ...lbc6, also looks okay) 1 0
lbxc6 ..txc6 1 1 ..te3 ..te7 1 2 f3 0-0 1 3 'ifd2
'ii'b 8 14 .l:tfd1 l:c8 1 S ..tfl lbd7 and Black
was okay in Ivanchuk-Rublevsky, Monte
catini Terme 2000.
b) 9 ..te3 (trying to reach the set-up stud
ied in Game 26) 9 ... ..te7 10 f4 lbc6!?
(10 ... 0-0?! transposes into note 'a' to Black's
9th move in Game 26; 10 ...lbbd7 is possible

73
Sicilia n Kan

White can play: able. Conversely, a queenside fianchetto for


c41) 10 f5 gxfS! 1 1 exfS .l:tg8 12 tLl3 eS White works well when Black plays ...tLlc6.
13 .igS tLlbd7 14 .ie4 bS! 1 5 .ixb7 'ii'b 6+ So with moves like 'ife2, f4 and 'it>h1 White
16 'it>h1 'ifxb7 17 b3 .ie7 18 'ii'e 2 l::tc 8 and is playing logically while waiting to see how
Black had reasonable counterplay in Magem Black reacts.
Badals-Ionescu, Manresa 1 996. That said, there are also advantages with
c42) 1 0 'it>h1 and now: ploughing right ahead with a queenside fi
c421) 10 ... .ig7 1 1 fS 'ii'e 7 12 fxe6 fxe6 anchetto, for example 9 b3 b6 10 i.b2 i.b7
13 'ii'a 4+! (Zeller) is problematic for Black: 1 1 'ife2 and now:
both 1 3. .. tLlbd7 14 tLlc6 and 13. ..tiJfd7 1 4 a) Given what I have said before,
.ie3 leave Black struggling t o complete his 1 1 ...tLlbd7 looks most logical. After 1 2 f4
development. 'ii'c 7 we transpose to note 'a' to White's
c422) 10 ...tLlbd7! 1 1 fS 'ii'e7 (an advan 1 1 th move.
tage of not playing an early .. .'ifc7) 1 2 fxe6 b) 1 1 ...tLlc6 12 tLlxc6 .ixc6 13 .U.ae t !? (13
fxe6 13 'ii'B .ig7 14 'ifh3 tLlcS 15 i.gS 0-0 f4 transposes to note 'b' to White's 1 1 th
(Zeller) and Black has an ideal set-up. Zeller move) 1 3 ...ttJd7?! (I believe Black should
goes on to give 1 6 .ic2 'ifd7 with the idea play 13. .. .l:te8! 14 f4 tLld7!)
of 1 7 .l:tae 1 ? lLlfxe4!.
If this analysis holds up then 9 ... g6 looks
like an excellent answer to 9 f4.
8 lt:\c3 0-0

14 tiJdS! .ih4 1 5 g3 .if6 16 tLlxf6+


lLlxf6 17 .l:td1 and the absence of Black's
dark-squared bishop promises White a
pleasant edge, Jansa-Polugacvsky, Sochi
9 'i!fe2 1 976
At some point White will have to decide For 9 i.e3 and other alternatives, sec
what to do with the dark-squared bishop Game 26.
(b3 and .ib2, or .id2). As John Nunn 9 . . . b6
points out in Beating the Sicilian, White would 9 ... tLlc6!? is not really a typical Kan idea
quite like to know how Black develops his but it is playable nevertheless. 10 tLlxc6
b8-knight before committing himself. Plans bxc6 1 1 f4 (1 1 b3 and .ib2 is also sensible)
involving .id2, 'ife2 and .l:tae1 are most 1 1 ...e5 1 2 'it>h1 tLld7 (Bonsch recommends
effective when Black has played ... tLlbd7. 12 ... exf4!? 13 .ixf4 tLld7) 13 f5! aS 14 .ic3
The point is that if White manages to was a bit better for White, Adams
achieve the advance e4-e5, then the f6- Christiansen, Reykjavik 1 990.
knight does not have the d7-square avail- 1 0 f4 ..tb7 1 1 h 1

74
5 i. d3 Ci:J f6 6 0 - 0 d 6

Again White may try to do without 'it>h 1 . lLlxe8+ l::txe8 2 5 'ii 3 and White was better
After 1 1 b 3 we have: in Hellers-Servat, Gausdal 1 986.
a) 1 t ...lLlbd7 (the most logical, given the
reasoning above) 1 2 i..b 2 'Wc7 (12 .. J:te8!?)
13 l::ta d1 l::t fe8 14 i..b 1 transposes to Game
10.
b) 1 t ...lLlc6 1 2 lLlxc6 i..x c6 1 3 i..b 2 lLld7
14 l::ta d1 and now probably best for Black is
14 ...g6!, asking the question whether White
has anything better than to transpose into
the main game with 1 5 'it>h 1 . At some point
White has to do something about tricks on
the a7-g1 diagonal but note that the imme
diate 1 4... b5? doesn't work for Black: 1 5
cxb5 axb5 1 6 i.xb5 'Wb6+ 1 7 l::t f2! i..x b5
18 'ir'xb5 'iVxb5 1 9 lLlxb5 l::txa2 20 i..xg7 1 6 . . .i.f8?
.l:!.fa8 21 l::txa2 l::txa2 22 i..d4 1eft White with Black has two better defences: .
a clear extra pawn in Hellers-Adamski, a) 1 6 ... 'iVc7 1 7 'iVd3 i.. f8 1 8 lLlb5!? i..x b5
Eeklo 1 985. 19 cxb5 axb5 20 'ir'xb5 'iVb7 (Nunn
Black should answer 1 1 i..d 2 with Gheorghiu, Hamburg 1 984) and now Nunn
1 t ...lLlc6! 1 2 lLlxc6 i..xc6 and now White's recommends 21 a4, relieving the b 1 -bishop
bishop is misplaced on d2. of its defensive duty on a2 and pinning
1 1 . . . Ci:Jc6 down the b6-pawn. This is enough to keep
1 t ...lLlbd7! 1 2 i.d2 'Wc7 13 l::ta e1 trans an edge.
poses to Game 9. Given the problems Black Against 1 6 ...'iib 8 Nunn likes 17 'iid3 b5
experiences in the text, I believe this is 18 cxb5 axb5 19 lLle2 b4 20 lLld4 i..b7 21
Black's best way to continue. 'ir'h3 'with a dangerous kingside attack'.
1 2 Ci:Jxc6 .i.xc6 1 3 b3 Ci:Jd7 1 7 e5!
In earlier games Gheorghiu played Now this is even stronger than in the
13. .. 'Wc7 here: 14 i..b 2 l:t.ad8 1 5 l::ta e1 i..b7 previous note. White obtains a storming
16 i..b 1 lLld7? (16 ...g6! 1 7 'ir'd3 is only a attack on the kingside.
slight plus for White according to Nunn) 1 7 1 7 . . . dxe5 1 8 .i.e4 'ikc7
'ir'h5 l::t fe8 1 8 l::te 3 lLlf6 1 9 'ir'h3 g6 20 f5 1 8 ...i..x e4 1 9 lLlxe4 i..g7 20 i..xe5 i..x e5
gave White a winning attack in Nunn 21 fxe5 'it>g7 22 'iVf2 leaves Black with no
Gheorghiu, Biel 1 983: 20 ... i..c 8 21 l::tg3 'it>g7 good defence: 22...'iie 7 23 'ii f6+ ! 'it>g8 24
22 'iVh4 l::t f8 23 i..c t l::td e8 24 e5 dxe5 25 'ir'xe7 l::txe7 25 l::txd7 or 22 ... l::te 7 23 lLlg5
'ir'h6+ 'it>h8 26 l::th3 l::tg8 27 i..g5 l::tg7 28 'ir'g8 24 lLlxf7 l::t f8 25 l::tx d7.
i..xf6 i..x f6 29 lLle4 'Wd8 30 fxg6 i..e 7 31 1 9 'ikf3 .i.xe4 20 Ci:Jxe4 f5
'ir'xh7+ l::txh7 32 l::tx h7+ 'it>g8 33 gxf7+ Or 20...i.g7 which is met by 21 fxe5
'it>xh7 34 fxe8'iV 1 -0. lLlxe5 22 lLlf6+ 'it>h8 23 'iVg3! and the
1 4 .i.b2 g6 1 5 ad 1 eB 1 6 .i.b1 knight is lost.
The direct 1 6 e5!? is also enticing: 21 xd7! fxe4 22 'ikd 1 'ikc6 23 .i.xe5
1 6 ... dxe5 1 7 fxe5 'iic 7 1 8 i..e4 lLlxe5 (or acB 24 'ikd4 i.e7
1 8 ... i.xe4 1 9 lLlxe4 lLlxe5? 20 'iif2 f5 21 24...i..c 5 runs into the attractive conclu
'iVf4) 1 9 i..xc6 lLlxc6 20 l::tx f7! 'it>xf7 21 sion 25 l::tg 7+ 'it>f8 26 i..d 6+! i..x d6 27 'iVf6
l::t fl + i.. f6 22 lLle4 e5 23 lLlxf6 'it>g7 24 mate.

75
Sicilia n Kan

12 ..ie3 tLlg4 1 3 'ir'xg4 ..ixd4 14 'ir'e2 with


an edge to White.
c) 9 ...tLlbd7 and now:
c1) 10 e3 transposes into the main text.
c2) 10 'ife2 'ifc7 transposes into note 'c'
to White's l Oth move in Game 9, while
Black can also consider 10 ... g6!?.
c3) 10 'it>h 1 with a further split:
c31) 10 ... 'ii'c 7?! 1 1 g4! is similar to the
main game, but I think that Black has
played ... 'ifc7 too early. He is not well pre
pared to meet a kingside storm.
c32) I believe that 10 ....:.e8! is best; a
25 f5! good, non-committal move, preparing
Excellent attacking play. The immediate ... ..i8. Black should generally wait for
25 i.h8 ..i8 26 .:.g7+?? 'it>xh8 27 :xg6+ White to 'waste' a move with 'ii'e2 before
fails to 27 ... e5! so White attempts to deflect reacting with ...'ii'c 7. Play can continue 1 1
the e6-pawn. 'ii'e2 'ii'c 7 and now:
25 . . .llcd8 c321) 1 2 lLlf3 lLlcS 1 3 ..ic2 eS 1 4 fS bS!
Now 25 ...exf5 26 ..ih8 wins after 15 ..igS b4 16 tLld 1 ..ib7 17 tLl2 aS 1 8
26 ... -i8 27 l:tg7+ Wxh8 28 .l:f.xg6+ . Black's ..ixf6 ..ixf6 1 9 tLlg4 a4 20 lLlxf6+ gxf6 2 1
best chance is 25 ...gxf5! 26 ..ih8 eS! lLld2 W 8 22 'ir'e3 We7 gave a n unclear po
(26 ... -i8 27 .l:f.xfS! exfS 28 .l:f.g7+ Wxh8 29 sition in Morovic Fernandez-Zapata, Cien
.l:f.g6+ mates) 27 'il'xeS 'ii'g6 28 l:txe7 .l:f.xe7 fuegos 1 996.
29 'ii'xe7 Wxh8 30 'ii'e S+ 'ii'g7 31 .l:%.xf5 l:td8 c322) 12 ..id2 b6 is a position discussed
32 h3 'ii'x eS 33 l:txeS l:td2 34 l:txe4 l:txa2 35 in Game 9, while also playable is 12 ... g6 1 3
.l:.e6 bS 36 cxbS axbS 37 .l:f.b6 and White tLl f3 ( 1 3 .:.ae 1 eS! as now there is n o tLlfS)
wins the ending. 1 3 ... b6 1 4 eS tLlhS 1 5 .:.ae1 (Gallagher
26 xe7 exf5 Erdelyi, Ticino 1 994) and now the sensible
Or 26 ...l:txd4 27 l:.g7+ 'it>8 28 fxg6 1 5 ... -ib7 looks fine for Black.
mate. 9 . . . llJbd7
27 xeS + 'i'xeB 28 'i'xb6 1 -0 9 ... b6?! is very risky. White plays 10 f4!
------ and now:
Game 26 a) 1 0.....ib7?! 1 1 eS! dxeS 1 2 fxeS lLlfd7
Beliavsky-Gheorghiu 1 3 .:.xf7!! l:.xf7 1 4 lLlxe6 'il'c8 1 5 'il'hS tLl8
Moscow 198 1 1 6 tLlx8 g6 1 7 .ixg6 hxg6 1 8 tLlxg6 .:.h7 1 9
'------- tLlxe7+ l:txe7 20 lLldS! ..ixdS 21 cxdS 'il'e8
1 e4 c5 2 llJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 llJxd4 a6 22 'il'g4+ .l:.g7 23 'ii'e4 tLld7 24 e6 lLlcS 25
5 .i.d3 liJf6 6 0-0 d6 7 c4 .i.e7 8 llJc3 i.xcS bxcS 26 d6 :d8 27 'ir'dS Wh8 28 :e1
0-0 9 .i.e3 :g6 29 :c3 :d7 30 :h3+ :h7 31 d7 1 -0
9 f4!? is a very tricky transpositional was very convincing from White's point of
move: view in Smagin-S.Salov, correspondence
a) 9 ... b6 10 ..ie3 transposes to note 'a' to 1984.
Black's 9th move. b) 10 ... 'ii'c 7 1 1 :c1 tLlbd7 (or 1 1 .....ib7
b) 9 ... d5!? is an untried suggestion from 12 fS 'il'd7 13 g4! h6 14 h4! tLlh7 15 gS!
Zeiler. He gives 1 0 eS dxc4 1 1 ..ixc4 ..icS hxgS 16 hxgS ..ixgS 17 ..ixgS tLlxgS 18 'il'hS

76
5 i.. d3 liJ f6 6 0 - 0 d6

ike7 1 9 f6 gxf6 20 l:.c2 with a winning at 12 e5!? d4 13 exf6 ..txf6 1 4 i.xh7+ 'ifi>xh7
tack, Psakhis-Sideif Sade, Moscow 1 983) 1 2 15 ikh5+ 'iti>g8 1 6 l:.ad1 was played in
g4! l2Jc5 ( 1 2. . .g6 1 3 g5 l2Je8 1 4 i.e2 i.d8 1 5 Murey-Zapata, La Valetta 1 980. Now
ike1 e 5 1 6 l2Jd5 ikb7 1 7 fxe5 dxe5 1 8 l2Jf3 16 ... g6? 17 ikc5 d3 1 8 l:.2 l:.b8 19 l:.fd2
ikc6 19 ikg3 was very good for White in ikc7 20 l2Je4 rurned out very well for White,
Geller-Panno, Lone Pine 1 980) 13 i.b1 (but but I prefer 1 6 ...l:.a7! 17 l2Je4 l:.d7, which
not 13 g5?! l2Jg4! 14 ikxg4 l2Jxd3 1 5 l:.c2 looks less clear.
l2Jb4 16 l:.ccl l2Jd3, as in Marjanovic 1 0 f4
Rajkovic, Yugoslavia 1980) 1 3 . .. i.b7 1 4 The most active. One possible plan in
ii f3 volves a kingside pawn storm with g2-g4-g5.
For the 'anti-Hedgehog' plan 10 f3 ikc7
1 1 l:.c l b6 1 2 ikd2 i.b7 13 l:.fd1 l:.ac8 14
i.fl see note 'a' to Black's 7th move in
Game 75.
1o . . . .:.es
Preparing to bolster the kingside de
fences with ... i.f8 and ... g7-g6.
10 ...ikc7?! looks narural but the queen
may well be better off at home if White is
insisting on a g2-g4-g5 lunge. White contin
ues with 1 1 g4! and now:
a) 1 1 ...l2Jc5 12 i.c2 (but not 1 2 g5?
l2Jg4!) 12 ... d5?! (12...g6 13 g5 l2Jh5 1 4 f5 and
and now: 12 ...e5 13 l2Jf5 i.xf5 14 exfS exf4 1 5 l:.xf4
b1) 14 ... .l:.fd8 1 5 g5 l2Je8 16 f5 e5 1 7 l2Je6 are both good for White, but still preferable
l2Jxe6 1 8 fxe6 f6 1 9 l2Jd5 i.xd5 20 exd5 to what happens next) 1 3 exd5 exd5 14 g5
gives White positional domination, Stypka l2Jg4 1 5 l2Jxd5 l2Jxe3? (15 ...ikd8 is the only
Przewoznik, Gdynia 1 982. move) 1 6 i.xh7+! and White wins, Macieja
b2) 14 ... l2Jfxe4? 1 5 i.xe4 l2Jxe4 16 l2Jxe4 Gratka, Koszalin 1 997.
f5 Qassim-Wians, Sharjah 1 985) 1 7 gxf5 b) 1 1 ...g6 12 g5 l2Jh5 13 i.e2 l2Jxf4?
exf5 1 8 ikg3 and the threat of l2Je6 nets (13 ...l2Jg7 1 4 f5 i.d8 is more resilient, al
White a piece. though still clearly better for White) 14
b3) 14 ...e5 1 5 l2Jf5 exf4 1 6 i.xf4 l:tfe8 1 7 l:.xf4 e5 1 5 l2Jd5 ikd8
b4 l2Je6 1 8 l2Jd5! and White wins material,
Stypka-Grycel, Krynica 1 998.
b4) 14 ...g6 (the best of a bad bunch) 1 5
g5 l2Je8 1 6 b4 l2Jd7 1 7 ikh3 and White has a
strong attack, Lopez Rodriguez-S.Kova
cevic, Mislata 1 995.
9 ... l2Jc6!? is not played very much,
probably through habit (many Kan players
are reluctant to play like this) . However, it
has certain positive fearures: 10 l2Jxc6 (for
1 0 l:.cl i.d7 see the note to White's l Oth
move in Game 23) 1 0 ... bxc6 and the bishop
on e3 isn't necessarily well placed. 1 1 f4 d5!?

77
Sicilia n Ka n

(Marulovic-Pikula, Arandjelovac 1 997) 1 6 (planning to break up Black's queenside


.l:tx7!! and Black is lost i n all lines: with a2-a4-aS) 1 S ... l:tac8 16 a4 'iWbB 17 aS
b1) 16 ... l:Ix7 17 lDe6 'tWaS 1 8 i..d2 traps and now in Pritchett-Gheorghiu, London
the queen. 1 980, the Romanian GM played the the
b2) 1 6...'iitx f7 17 lDe6!! 'ifi>xe6 1 8 lDc7+! matic break 17 ... dS but after 1 8 cxdS i.. xb4
'3;7 (18 ...'ii'x c7 19 'iWdS mate) 19 'iWdS+ 1 9 lDa2! l:txc1 20 i..x cl bxaS 21 lDxb4 axb4
'iitg7 20 lDe6+. 22 dxe6?! fxe6 23 eS lDdS 24 'iWhS lDf8 2S
b3) 1 6...exd4 1 7 l:txe7 dxe3 1 8 'ii'd4 l:I7 fS White's attack was too strong.
19 l:tx7 'iitx 7 (or 1 9 ...\WxgS+ 20 'iith 1
'iitx f7 21 'iWhB!) 20 l:tft + 'iti>g8 21 'ii'xe3 and
White is winning (analysis by Matulovic).
1 1 h 1
Naturally White can still attack like a
caveman with 1 1 g4 but, with his rook on
e8 and queen on dB, I believe Black is far
better placed to combat it: 1 1 ...g6 1 2 gS
lDhS, with the idea of undermining the sup
port of gS with ... e6-eS, for example 1 3
i..e2? eS! 1 4 lDfS lDxf4 1 S lDh6+ 'iitg7 1 6
..txf4 exf4 1 7 h 4 i..xgS! 1 8 hxgS 'ii'xgS+ 1 9
lDg4 lDeS and White's position falls apart.
Instead White should take prophylactic 1 2 . . . g6! 1 3 g5 lDh5
measures against ...e6-eS, for example with Now Black plans to undermine the sup
1 2 lDb3, but obviously the attack will then port of the gS-pawn with ... e6-eS so White
be a lot slower. is forced into complications which are not
White has a more methodical attacking unfavourable for Black.
plan at his disposal: 1 1 'ii'f3 !? i.. f8 1 2 l:tad1 1 4 f5 exf5 1 5 lDxf5 ltJc5! 1 6 ltJd5 lDxe4
'ii'c 7 13 'ii'h3 g6 (I prefer to leave well alone 1 7 i.d4 i.xf5!?
on the kingside and play 13 ... b6, for exam Also playable is 17 ...'iWxgS 1 8 i..e3 (18
ple 1 4 lDf3 i..b 7 and now 1 S eS can be met i..xe4? l:txe4 1 9 'ii'x hS gxhS 20 l:tg1 J:tg4 21
with 1 S ...dxeS 16 fxeS ..tcS!) 14 lDf3 b6 1 S lDf6+ 'ii'xf6 and Black wins) 18 ...'ii'd8 19
'ii'h4 i..b7 1 6 lDgS! h6?! 1 7 lDxf7! 'iitx f7 1 8 i..b 6, when Black can either repeat with
e S dxeS 1 9 fxeS 'ii'x eS 20 i..e4! 'iitg8 21 19 ... \WgS 20 i..e3 or try for more with
i..d 4 i..c S 22 i..xb7 gS! 23 'ii' f2 lDg4 24 1 9 ...'ii'd 7!?.
..txeS i..x f2+ 2S l:txf2 lDdxeS 26 l:te2 and 1 8 xf5 i.g7
White had a better endgame, Ljubojevic 18 ... gxfS? 19 'ii'x hS gives White a win
Bellon Lopez, Linares 1 98 1 . However, ning attack: 1 9 ...i..g7 20 i..xg7 'iit xg7 21
16 ...i..g7! doesn't look bad for Black. i..xe4 fxe4 22 'ii'h 6+ 'iith 8 23 lDf6.
1 1 . . . i.f8 1 2 g4?! 19 i.xg7 xg7 20 .i.xe4 l:!.xe4 21
Repeating what I said in the previous xf7 + xf7 22 'i'f3 + gB!
note, Black is now in a good position to The right square. 22...'iitg7?! 23 'ii'xe4 is
defuse this idea. good for White as 23 ... \WxgS? loses to 24
In this instance a more positional plan lDc7!.
proves to be stronger: 1 2 'ii'e 2 'ii'c 7 (I think 23 'i'xe4 'i'xg5 24 'i'e6 + hB 25 f1
1 2... g6!?, planning a possible ...e6-eS, is White has just enough compensation to
stronger) 1 3 l:tac1 b6 14 b4! ..tb7 1 S lDb3! keep the balance, but no more.

78
5 .1J.. d3 li:J f6 6 0 - 0 d 6

move i s another question.


Other possibilities for Black include:
a) I don't like 7 ... 'ii'b 6?!, which can be
met simply by 8 h 1 ! .
b) 7. . .1t...e 7 8 h1 lLlbd7 (8. . .'ii'c 7 9 lt:Jc3
transposes to a line considered in Chapter 6,
but there is no point committing the queen
so soon) 9 'it' 3!? lLlc5 1 0 lt:Jc3 0-0 1 1 1t...e 3
'ii'c 7 12 a4 (12 g4!? b5 13 g5 lt:Jfd7 14 a3
1t...b7 is unclear) 12 ... b6 13 f5 e5 14 lt:Jb3
lt:Jxd3 (14... 1t...b7 1 5 lLlxc5 dxc5 1 6 b3! 1t...c6
17 g4 gave White a strong kingside attack in
Tukmakov-Shamkovich, USSR 1 972) 1 5
25 . . Jtd8 26 b3 b5 27 'ife4 bxc4 28 cxd3 1t...b7 1 6 l:Iacl 'ii'd8 1 7 d 4 exd4 1 8
bxc4 'ife5 29 'ifxe5 + dxe5 30 l:!f7 li:Jf4 lt:Jxd4 l:te8! gave Black good counterplay in
31 li:Jxf4 Y2 -Y, Romito-Carrettoni, correspondence 1 999.
c) 7 ...lt:Jbd7!? keeps options open regard
Game 27 ing the fianchetto:
Hellers-Gheorghiu c1) 8 lt:Jc3 transposes to a very complex
Haifa 1989 line of the Scheveningen: 8 ...'ii'b 6! 9 1t...e3
'ii'xb2 10 lLldbS! axbS 1 1 lLlxbS l:taS 12 l:Ib 1
1 e4 c5 2 li:Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 li:Jxd4 a6 l:Ixb5 13 l:.xb2 l:.xb2 14 'it'a 1 l:Ib6 1 5 i.xb6
5 .1J.. d 3 li:Jf6 6 0-0 d6 7 f4! ? lt:Jxb6 1 6 'ii'c 3 i.e7 1 7 l:Ib1 lt:Jfd7 1 8 'ii'xg7
1t... f6 1 9 'ii'h6 (Anand-Kasparov, Tilburg
1 991) and now 1 9 ... l:.g8! 20 1t...b5 e7 21
l:Id1 l:Ig4 is unclear according to Kasparov.
c2) 8 h1 g6 9 fS lLleS! reveals another
advantage of having the queen on d8 over
c7; the f6-knight is protected. Black can
follow up with ... 1t...g7 and ... 0-0.
8 li:Jc3
Another idea is 8 lt:J3 1t...g7 9 'it'c l . In a
way this plan makes more sense than in the
line 6 ...'ii'c 7 7 'ii'e 2 d6 8 f4 as White has
obviously not wasted a tempo with the
queen. However, Black has also not 'wasted'
A s with the line 6. . .'ii'c 7 7 'ii'e2 d6 8 f4!? a move with ... 'ii'c7 and the queen is just as
(see Game 1 3), White doesn't need to well placed on d8 in this line. The variation
commit himself to playing c2-c4 and can 9 ...0-0 10 h 1 lt:Jc6 1 1 lLlc3 lt:Jb4! 1 2 eS
instead take immediate action on the king lLlxd3 1 3 cxd3 lt:Je8 1 4 1t...e3 1t...d7 1 5 'ii' 2
side. 1t...c6 1 6 1t...b 6 'ii'd7 led to an equal position
7 . . . g6!? in Kosten-Cvitan, Haifa 1 989.
As we have seen many times before, the 8 . . . .1J.. g 7 9 cJi>h 1 0-0 1 0 f5!
kingside fianchetto is always the idealistic I believe that this is the most critical line.
choice against an 2-f4 plan. Whether in this White can also try the lt:JO/'ii'e 1 plan but,
particular instance it's actually the best as we saw in the note to White's 8th move,

79
Sic ilia n Kan

this is not particularly dangerous for Black. lent defensive moves.


1 8 h3 lbf1 + 1 9 .bf1 'ilff2 20 'ilfxf2
lLlxf2 + 21 g1 ..txc3! 22 bxc3 lLle4 23
..th6 ..ta6 24 ..txa6 xa6 25 c4 aS 26
cxd5 cxd5 27 llg7 + hB 28 d7 gB

1 O . lLlc6 1 1 lLlxc6 bxc6 1 2 ..tg5! exf5


. .

Following 12 ...l::tb8? White has the the


matic sacrifice 13 fxc6 fxe6 1 4 eS! dxeS 1 5
lDe4.
1 3 exf5 d5 1 4 'ili'd2 a 5 29 xd5?
In order t o exchange one of White's at 29 a3! preserves some small wmmng
tacking weapons with ... i.a6. chances.
1 5 .l:!.ae 1 'ili'b6 29 . . . lLlc3! 30 d7 lLlxa2 31 c4 lLlb4 32
1 5 ...i.a6? 1 6 fxg6 fxg6 17 l::te 6! (Gheor g7 + hB 33 llb7 lLld3 34 ..te3 cB
ghiu) is very strong for White. 35 .l:!.d7 lLlc5 36 ..td4 + gB 37 .l:!.g7 +
1 6 fxg6 fxg6 1 7 .l:!.e 7 lLlg4! fB 38 .l:!.xh7 .l:!.c6 39 .l:!.a7 lLlb3 40
This just about keeps the balance, al ..tg7 + eB 4 1 ..tc3 l::tx c4 42 ..txa5
though Black has to play a series of excel- Y, - Y,

80
5 i. d3 lb f6 6 0 - 0 d 6

Summary
Development with 7 ... ..id7 (Games 20-23) is certainly a viable alternative to main lines and
there is the added advantage that white players are less likely to have studied these less fash
ionable variations. As far as I can see, White's best chance of keeping some sort of advan
tage lies with 1 1 l:td1 (Game 21) and 9 ..ie3 (Game 23).
If Black is going to play ... g6 variations, then I believe that it's best to play those dis
cussed in Chapter 1 as 7 ... g6 only seems to give White extra options. Lines with classical
development shown in Games 25-26 are very similar to those in Chapter 1 (Games 9- 1 1 ),
with the different queen placements proving to be a minor point. Despite the bad press,
these lines are playable for Black as long as he knows exactly what he's doing regarding king
safety.

1 e4 c5 2 lbf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 /bxd4 a6 5 i.d3 /bf6 6 0-0 d6 7 c4


7 f4 - Game 27
7 . . . i.d7 (D)
7 ...g6 - Game 24
7 ... ..ie 7 8 lLlc3 0-0
9 'ife2 - Game 25; 9 .ie3 - Game 26
8 /bc3 /bc6 9 /bxc6
9 ..ie3 (D) - Game 23
9 . . . ..txc6 1 0 e2
10 b4 - Game 22
10 . . . ..te7 1 1 b3
1 1 l:1d1 - Game 21
1 1 . . 0-0 . (D) - Game 20

9 i.e3 1 1 . 0-0
. .

81
CHAPTER FOUR I
5 i.d3 i.c5

1 e 4 c5 2 lUf3 e 6 3 d 4 cxd4 4 lDxd4 a6 tempo by attacking the bishop. 6 c3 and


5 .td3 .tc5 other sixth move alternatives are discussed
In this chapter we srudy the variation 5 in Game 4 1 .
.td3 .tc5. Black takes advantage of White's 6 . . . .ta7
slightly cluttered d-file and attacks the Black's other main retreat here is 6 ... .te7,
knight on d4. The idea is to force the knight heading for a Hedgehog set-up where
to an inferior square before deciding the White's knight has been pushed from d4 to
furure of the bishop. Generally the dark b3. For the standard white treatment with 7
squared bishop ends up outside the pawn 0-0 d6 8 c4, see Games 37-38, while 8 f4
chain along the a7-g1 diagonal, but Black 'ii'c 7 9 lLlc3 lLlf6 will be discussed under the
does also have the option of a more defen move order 5 lLlc3 'ii'c 7 6 .td3 lLlf6 7 0-0
sive retreat with ... .te7. .ic5 8 lLlb3 .ic7 9 f4 d6 in Chapter Six. 7
Let's take a look at the opening moves: 'ii'g4 is perhaps the most critical variation.
1 e4 c5 2 lDf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lDxd4 a6 Black can then allow White to caprure on g7
5 i.d3 .tc5 6 lDb3 with 7 ...lLlf6 (see Game 39) or prevent it
with 7 ...g6 (see Game 40).
6 ... .ib6 is also possible and often trans
poses to 6 ... -ta7 lines, although this is seen
as a slightly inferior version as it prevents
the possibility of ... b7-b5. White may con
sider exploiting this by forgoing 'ii'e 2 and
.te3, playing lines with an early 0-0 and
either 'ii'g4 or c4 and hl (as he does
against ... .ia7 in Game 36).
7 'iife 2
White prepares to trade off Black's active
bishop with .ie3. Traditionally this plan has
been extremely popular.
By far the most popular response. White The main alternative is 7 0-0 and now:
moves the knight again but regains the a) 7 ... lbe7!? is an interesting option,

82
5 i.. d3 i.. c 5

avoiding 'Wg4 lines. Of course, the flipside also play more positionally with 9 0-0, in
is that Black is then committed to playing tending c2-c4 (see Games 31 -32) .
...ltJge7 lines.
b) 7 ...l2Jc6 and now:
b1) 8 'Wg4 is an extremely important idea
which highlights a minus side to Black's
plan - the g-pawn is lacking cover. Black
can either sacrifice it with 8...l2Jf6 (see
Game 34) or protect with 8 ...'Wf6 (see
Game 35).
b2) The plan starting with 8 c4, erecting
the Maroczy Bind, is considered in Game
36. I will also mention 8 h 1 , planning 2-
f4, as another possible plan.
Other moves tend to transpose: 7 c4
l2Jc6 8 0-0 reaches note 'b2' above, while 7 9 . . . tt'lf6
l2Jc3 l2Jc6 8 'We2 d6 9 ..i.e3 transposes to By no means the only choice:
the main line. 7 'Wg4 can be found in the a) I t's also possible to develop the knight
notes to Game 34. with 9 ... l2Jge7!? (see Game 30).
7 . . tt'lc6 8 i..e 3
. b) The move 9 ... b5!? is interesting; Black
8 l2Jc3 d6 9 ..i.e3 transposes. waits to see what White does before com
8 . . . d6 mitting his g8-knight. 1 0 0-0-0 l2Jge7! trans
For many years the main line consisted poses to Game 30, while 10 0-0 l2Jf6!
of Black simply capturing on e3 with reaches Game 29. White can, however, also
8 .....i.xe3 9 'Wxe3 and now: keep his options open with 10 f4. A fter
a) 9 ...l2Jf6!? allows White an extra oppor 10 ...l2Jf6 1 1 0-0-0 we reach the main line.
tunity to instigate complications: 1 0 0-0-0
a 1) 10 l2Jc3 0-0?! (1 o. . d6! transposes to
. Or:
Game 33) 1 1 e5! l2Jg4 1 2 ..i.xh7+! xh7 1 3 a) 10 f4!? b5 (10 ... e5!?) 1 1 i.xa7 .l:txa7 1 2
'ii'e 4+ g8 1 4 'Wxg4 l2Jxe5 1 5 'ii'e 2! gave 0-0-0 reaches the main line.
White a clear advantage in Klinger b) 10 ..i.xa7 .l:txa7 1 1 f4 b5 (1 1 ...e5 12 f5
Meinsohn, Bad Lauterberg 1 984. b5 1 3 0-0-0 b4 gives White the added pos
b) 10 e5!? and now: sibility of 14 l2Jd5!?) 12 0-0-0 and again we
b1) 1 0...l2Jg4 1 1 'Wg3 l2Jcxe5 (or 1 1 ...h5 reach the main line.
12 h3 l2Jgxe5 13 'Wxg7 with a clear plus - c) White can opt for a quieter life with 1 0
Klinger) 1 2 ..i.e2 f5! (12... h5 1 3 h3 h4 1 4 0-0 (see Game 29), although it's less flexible
'Wc3 win s a piece) 13 h 3 f4! 1 4 'Wc3 'Wh4 1 5 here than on the 9th move as White no
0-0 h 5 1 6 ltJ1 d2! and, despite the extra longer has the option of c2-c4.
pawn, Black's position is a bit of a mess. d) 10 g4!? is an interesting sideline:
b2) 10 ... l2Jd5! 1 1 'Wg3 0-0 looks okay for 10 ...b5 1 1 g5 l2Jd7 (Wolff-Christiansen, San
Black, who will attack e5 with ... f7-f6. Francisco 1 991) and now Christiansen rec
c) 9 ...d6! is the most exact move. A fter ommends 1 2 f4, assessing the position as
10 l2Jc3 we reach Game 33. slightly better for White. Black can also play
9 tt'lc3 10 .....i.xe3 1 1 'ii'x e3, transposing to the note
With this move White keeps the option to White's 1 1 th move in Game 33.
open of castling on either wing. White can 1 0 . b5
. .

83
Sicilia n Ka n

I believe this to be the most accurate ... i.d7 and the c6-knight moving.
move order. For 10 ...0-0 1 1 f4 eS 1 2 i.xa7 I can't find any examples of 1 3 tt:'lb1,
xa7 1 3 fS bS 14 g4 b4 1 S tt:'la4, sec the which does little to stem Black's counter
note to Black's 1 4th move in Game 28. play on the quccnside: 13 ...'iVc7 14 tt:'l1d2
aS! and Black will continue with ... aS-a4.
1 3 . . . e5
Preventing White from playing e4-eS
himself, although 1 3. .. i.d7 14 cS dxcS 1 S
fxeS tt:'ldS and 1 3. . .0-0 1 4 c S tt:'ldS arc plau
sible alternatives.
14 f5

1 1 ..txa7
It makes sense to exchange bishops now
as it forces Black to recapture with the rook.
1 1 f4?! is answered strongly by 1 1 ...b4! and
now:
a) 12 tt:'lb 1 does nothing to hold up
Black's quccnside counterplay: 12 ... eS 13
ttJ 1 d2 0-0 1 4 hfl i.xc3 1 S 'iVxc3 tt:'lg4 1 6 Clamping down on the kingsidc. White
'iVg3 a S 1 7 b1 a4 1 8 tt:'lc1 'iVc7 19 tt:'lc4 has a simple plan of a kingside attack with
cxf4 20 'iVxf4 tt:'lceS and Black was clearly g2-g4-gS. The ideas and tactics from this
better in D.Gross-Bezold, Wi.irzburg 1 99S. position are discussed in Game 28.
b) 12 tt:'la4 i.d7! and now White has
some problems with his knight on a4, as 1 3 Game 28
i.xa7? loses to 1 3 . . .tt:'lxa7!. Niggemann-Pfrommer
1 1 .. Jba7 Correspondence 1998
1 1 ...tt:'lxa7? not only looks silly, but 12 cS!
is a very strong reply. 1 e4 c5 2 tt:lt3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt:lxd4 a6
1 2 f4 5 ..td3 ..tc5 6 tt:lb3 ..ta7 7 'ife2 tt:lc6 8
As we have already seen, move orders are ..te3 d6 9 tt:lc3 b5 1 0 0-0-0 tt:lt6 1 1
very important throughout this variation. ..txa7 :xa7 1 2 f4 b4 1 3 tt:la4 e5 1 4 f5
Here White could delay f2-f4 in favour of ..td7!
the immediate 12 g4!? b4 13 tt:'la4. Now Some exciting correspondence games
13 ...0-0 1 4 f4 eS 1S fS transposes to the have breathed new life into this variation as
note to Black's 1 4th move in Game 28, far as Black is concerned.
while 1 3. ..i.d7 14 gS forces 14 ... tt:'lg8. Earlier Black had been playing 14 ... 0-0,
1 2 . . . b4 1 3 tt:la4 but this move seems to run into a strong
This blocks Black's pawn advance on the attack on the kingsidc. Nevertheless, there
queenside, but White must be careful as in remain some unanswered questions (sec
some lines the knight can be snared by variation 'bS2' below). As far as I can sec,

84
5 i.. d3 i.. c 5

the critical line runs 14 ...0-0 1 5 g4 i.d7 2 2 ltJxd4 exd4 23 'ii'g5 (Yakovich gives 23
(1 5...ltJd4? 1 6 ltJxd4 exd4 1 7 'ii'2 and the l:txd4 i.xa4 24 e5 as winning, but I'm not
d4-pawn drops) 1 6 g5 ltJe8 17 'ii'e3 (so that sure how White should continue after
the problem knight can escape via b6) 24...'ii'e7!) 23 ... d5 (or 23 ... ltJxe4 24 'ii'xd8
17 ...l:tb7! (it's worth a pawn to keep the l:tbxd8 25 l:the1 ltJ2 26 l:td2 i.xa4 27 l:tx2
knight imprisoned) 18 i.xa6 d5 28 i.d3 l:txf7 29 l:tf4 and the pawn on
d4 drops, while 23 ...i.xa4 loses to 24 l:thg1)
24 i.xd5 h6 (24... ltJxd5 25 'ii'x d8 l:tbxd8 26
ltJc5 ltJe3 27 l:txd4 l:txf7 28 l:te 1 ltJg4 29
l:ted 1 ltJe5 30 l:td5 l:te7 3 1 ltJe6 wins for
White) 25 'ii'g6 ltJxd5 26 l:thg1 'ii' f6 27 ltJc5
ltJb6 28 'ii'x f6 gxf6 29 l:tg6 l:txf7 30 l:txh6+
'it>g7 31 l:tg6+ 'it>f8 32 l:txd4 and White,
who is picking up a fifth pawn for the
knight, should be winning.
b3) 19 ...'ii'c7 20 'ii'd3 (threatening to
solve the knight problem with ltJac5!)
20...ltJa5 21 ltJxa5 'ii'xa5 22 b3 'it>h8 23 f6
l:td8 24 fxg7 + ltJxg7 25 l:thfl i.e6 26 'it>b 1
and now: and White has a clear extra pawn with a
a) Nunn points out the natural 1 8 ...l:ta7, good position, Chopin-Chorf, correspon
which had been previously neglected by dence 1 993.
players and annotators: 1 9 i.b5 ltJd4 and b4) 19 ...ltJa5 20 ltJxa5 'ii'xa5 and now:
here Nunn gives 20 i.xd7 'ii'xd7 21 ltJb6 b41) 21 ltJc5 'ii'a7 22 g6 hxg6? 23 fxg6
'ii'c 6 22 l:txd4! exd4 23 'ii'xd4 l:tc7 24 ltJa1 , dxc5 24 gxf7 + l:txf7 25 l:thfl ltJf6 26 l:txf6
which is slightly better for White, while I gxf6 27 'ii'h6 1 -0 was the game Wojnar
also like 20 ltJxd4 exd4 21 'ii'xd4 l:txa4 22 Stepanov, correspondence 1 994, but I'm
.ixa4 i.xa4 23 f6! . not so convinced after the stronger defence
b) 1 8. . .l:tb8 i s answered strongly b y 1 9 22 ... dxc5! 23 gxf7+ l:txf7.
.ic4!. I was o n the receiving end o f this b42) 21 b3! i.xa4 22 bxa4 'ii'xa4 23
over-the-board novelty in a game against l:thg1 (threatening g5-g6) 23 ...'it>h8 24 l:tg3
the Russian GM Yuri Yakovich. In some l:tc8 25 .ib3 'ii'a 3+ 26 'it>b1 ltJc7 27 11h3
lines Black does indeed win the a4-knight, ltJb5
but by that stage White is usually crashing
through on the kingside. Earlier 1 9 'it>b 1
had been tried, but 1 9 ...'ii'c7 20 l:td5
(Speelman-Lobron, Munich 1 992) 20...ltJd4
(Speelman) 21 ltJxd4 exd4 22 l:txd4 i.xa4
sees White struggling to justify himself.
After 1 9 i.c4 we have the following pos
sibilities:
b1) 19 ... g6? 20 fxg6 hxg6 21 h4 ltJd4 22
h5 i.xa4 23 hxg6 (Yakovich) and the
threats of l:th8+ and 'ii'h3 are too much for
Black to handle.
b2) 19 ... ltJd4!? 20 g6 ltJf6 21 gxf7+ 'it>h8

85
Sicilia n Ka n

28 .:.xh7+ ! (but not 28 g6?? lLlc3+ 29 1 6 . . . a5


a1 'ii'b 2+ !!) 28...xh7 29 'ii'h 3+ g8 30 If Black is unsure about the game con
g6 .:.fd8 31 f6! and White soon mates. tinuation, then 1 6....ie8 also looks reason
bS) 1 9 .. .'ith8 (my choice in the game) 20 able: 17 liJdS aS 18 l2Jd2 l:tb7 1 9 lLlxf6+
'ii'd2 20...l2JaS 21 lLlxaS 'ii'xaS 22 b3 .ixa4 'ii'xf6 20 g4 l2Jd4 was unclear in Ruch
(22 ... .:.c8 23 'ii'd S! 'ii'a7 24 b1 'ii'e 3 2S Chorfi, correspondence 1998.
.:.he1 'ii'xgS 26 lLlb6 .ic6 27 'ii'aS 'ii'd 8 28 1 7 i.b5 g4 1 8 ..g 1
.idS .ixdS 29 .:.xdS .:.c6 30 l2Jc4 and
White eventually converted his advantage,
Yakovich-Emms, Cappelle Ia Grande 1 993)
23 bxa4 'ii'xa4 24 :hg1 lLlc7 (24 ....:.b6 2S
.:tg3 lLlc7 26 l:th3 [Yakovich] seems very
strong for White, for example 26 ...'ii'c 6 27
g6 'ii'xc4 28 .:.xh7+ g8 29 f6! lLle6 30
.:.xg7+ lLlxg7 31 'ii'h 6 and White mates) 2S
.:.g3 liJbS 26 .ixbS and now Black has two
possibilities:
bS1) Nunn gives 26 ... .:.xbS 27 'ii'xd6 .:tg8
28 .:,h3 'ii'xa2 29 g6 which wins for White
on account of 29 ... fxg6 30 .:txh7+ ! or
29 ... h6 30 l:txh6+ gxh6 31 'ii' f6+ .:tg7 32 1 8 . . . d4!
.l:td8. This leads to an amazing sequence after
bS2) I prefer 26 ... 'ii'x bS! and believe that which Black is a rook down but has a very
Black is still well in the game, for example strong attack against the white king.
27 .:th3 'ii'c4 28 g6 'ii'xa2 29 lhh7+ g8 30 1 9 xd7?!
'ii'gS 'ifa 1 + 31 'itd2 'ii'd 4+ is a draw by 1 9 lLlxd4! leads to an unclear endgame
perpetual check as 32 e2 'ii'x e4+ 33 f2 after 1 9 ... 'ii'xb6 20 l2Jc6 'ili'xg1 21 .:thxg1
'iix c2+ 34 .:.d2 loses to the surprising re .ixc6 22 .ixc6 .l:td8.
source 34 ...'ii'x fS+!! 3S 'ii'x fS fxg6. 1 9 . . . xb5 20 xf8 a4! 21 d2
Plenty of mind-boggling variations and in Perhaps 21 lLla1 , although Black's attack
most of them White is winning, but line is still dangerous after 21 . . .a3 22 b3 'ifc7 23
'bS2' seems to make a good case for Black's 'iie l l2Jc3.
defence. 21 . . . d4 22 <t>b1 -.c7 23 .l:!.c1 a3 24 b3
1 5 -.e3 -.c3 25 c4 l:l.c7! 26 -.e 1 .l:.xc4 27
White must take measures to rescue the -.xc3 .l:.xc3 28 d7 e3 29 b6 e2
knight on a4. 1 S 'ii f2 0-0 leads to similar 30 a4 l:l.c6 31 l:l.he 1 xc 1 32 .l:!.xe3
positions, while 1 S g4? l2Jb8! is good for xa2! 33 g4
Black. Or 33 'it>xa2 l:txc2+ 34 b1 .:.xg2 3S
1 5 . . . 0-0 1 6 b6 .:td3 .:txh2 36 l:hd6 hS! and Black's kingside
16 h3 is too slow: 16 ... .:.b7 (threatening pawns will win .
...ltJaS or ...l2Jd4) 17 .ixa6 .:ta7 1 8 .:.xd6 33 . . . c3 + ! 34 xc3 .l:!.xc3 35 .l:!.xc3
.:txa6 19 lLlacS .:.xa2 20 lLlxd7 lLlxd7 21 bxc3 36 a2 d5 37 xa3 dxe4 38 lt>b4
.:.xc6 'ii'a8 22 .:.c7 .:.a 1+ 23 lLlxa 1 'ii'xa 1 + e3 39 xc3 e4! ! 0-1
24 Wd2 'ii'x h1 2S .:.xd7 'ili'xg2+ 26 'iie 2 An incredible finish. White is in
'ii'x h3 and Black's extra pawn told in zugzwang, for example 40 gS f8 41 h4
Marques-Chorfi, correspondence 1 997. e7 42 hS g6 43 fxg6 fxg6 44 hxg6 hxg6 4S

86
5 .1L d3 .1L c 5

b4 'it>d6 46 b S 'it>cS and White finally runs Bezold, Bad Homburg 1 996. This idea of
out of pawn moves. exchanging dark-squared bishops and then
playing ... e6-eS is a typical equalising plan
for Black.
b) 1 1 a4!? b4 12 ltJd1 0-0 13 i.xa7 lha7
14 ltJe3 ltJaS 1 S ltJxaS 'ii'x aS 1 6 ltJc4 'i'cS
17 ltJxd6!? 'ii'xd6 1 8 eS 'ii'd4 19 exf6 'ii'x f6
20 'ii'e4 g6 21 'ii'xb4 :i.b7 22 'ii'c 3 'ii'xc3 23
bxc3 gave White an endgame edge in Acs
Sax, Lillafured 1 999. However, Ribli's sug
gested improvement of 1 4... dS looks okay
for Black, for example 1 S exdS exdS 1 6 aS
:.es 1 7 'ii' f3 (or 1 7 'ii'd2 ae7) 1 7...ae7,
when the pawn on aS is just as vulnerable as
the one on a6.
1 1 . Jba7 1 2 f4 b4 1 3 lLld1
.

Game 29
Hjartarson-Bezold
Bermuda 1997

1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6


5 .1Ld3 .1Lc5 6 lLlb3 .1La7 7 lLlc3 lLlc6 8
'i'e2 d6 9 .1Le3 lbt6 1 0 0-0 b5

1 3 . . . e5!
Model strategy from Black. After the
bishop exchange, Black puts his central
pawns on dark squares, thus complement
ing his light-squared bishop and preventing
White from playing e4-eS. It's true that
White has a potential outpost on dS but he
Despite the fact that White has opted for is in no real position to exploit this.
a quieter life by castling kingside, it's natural 1 4 lLle3 'iib6 1 5 Wh 1 exf4!
for Black to continue with queenside opera- Correctly relieving the tension in the cen
tions. tre and obtaining a very useful outpost on
1 1 .1Lxa7 eS. 1 S ... O-O? would have allowed 16 fS! fol
Or: lowed by a very straightforward plan of g2-
a) 1 1 a3 0-0 12 ad1 eS 13 i.xa7 (13 g4-gS.
i.gS?! h6 1 4 i.h4? gS 1S i.g3 i.g4 wins 1 6 .l:!.xf4 i.e6 1 7 .l:!.af 1
material) 1 3. .. xa7 1 4 'ii'e 3 i.e6 with a 17 ltJdS!? looks more threatening, al
comfortable position for Black, Unzicker- though after 1 7 ... i.xdS 1 8 exdS+ ltJeS 1 9

87
Sicilia n Kan

'ii'd2 aS 20 a3 bxa3 21 l:txa3 0-0 everything Votava, Reykjavik 2002 - Black has some
seems to hang together for Black. problems defending aS and d6.
1 7 . . . tt'le5! b) I can find only two examples of
With this dominating knight on eS, Black 10 ... 0-0!?, but I can see nothing wrong with
is guaranteed a comfortable equality. it. Black is going to castle kingside after all,
1 8 tt'lt5 .bf5 1 9 exf5 0-0 20 'i'd2 b8 so why delay the inevitable? Play continues
21 .te2 .l:tc7 22 d4 d5 23 'i't4 a5! 24 with 1 1 l:tad 1 bS! and now:
l:.d2 l:.e8 25 'i'd4 'i'xd4 Yz -Yz b 1) 12 a4 (this works better when the
rook is on at) 12 ...b4 13 ltJb1 ltJg6 14
Game 30 ltJ1d2 'ii'f6 1S .ixa7 l:txa7 1 6 ltJc4 dS 17
Z .Aimasi-Stangl ltJb6 ltJf4 1 8 'ii'e3 d4 1 9 'ii'g3 (Bashkov
Altensteig 1994 Tunik, Minsk 1 993) and now 19 ...eS!
(Tunik) leaves Black standing well.
1 e4 c5 2 tt'lt3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt'lxd4 a6 b2) 12 a3 eS! 13 .ixa7 l:txa7 1 4 1i'e3 .ie6
5 i.d3 .tc5 6 tt'lb3 .ta7 7 tt'lc3 tt'lc6 8 1S ltJdS l:tb7 16 4::lx e7+ 'ii'xe7 17 4Jd2 aS
'i'e2 d6 9 .te3 tt'lge7 was slightly better for Black in G.Ginsburg
Tunik, Minsk 1 994.
b3) 12 f4!?, leading to play similar to that
in the note to 10 f4 below, is probably best.
c) 10 ... .ixe3!? 1 1 'ii'xe3 eS comes into
consideration given that the rook is not so
effective on a7 when White castles kingside.
Black has to be careful not to play the ... b7-
bS lunge too early (White may hit back with
a2-a4) so the rook often shuffles back to a8
to re-enter the game.
d) l O ... eS is the most common move.
Black takes prophylactic measures against
f2-f4, which will now be met by a pawn
When black players were experiencing exchange.
difficulties in the ... ltJf6 lines, many turned
their attention to developing the knight on
e7 instead. One advantage this development
has over the classical ...4Jf6 is that White's
pawn storm on the kingside is generally less
effective as g2-g4-gS does not gain a possi
bly crucial tempo on the knight.
1 0 0-0-0
Given the reasoning above, castling
queenside is not such an attractive option
for White as it is against ...ltJf6 lines, so
many choose to castle short instead. After
1 0 0-0 Black has the following possibilities:
a) 10 ... bS 1 1 a4! b4 12 4::lb 1 0-0 13 4::\ 1 d2 Now 1 1 f4 exf4 1 2 :txf4 4::lg6 1 3 :tf2
eS 14 4::\c4 4::lg6 1 S l:tfd1 .ie6 1 6 g3 aS 1 7 4::\geS 14 h3 0-0 lS l:taft .ie6 was equal in
:td2 was a bit better for White, E.Berg- Otero-Vilela, Havana 1999, as was 1 1 :tad 1

88
5 d3 c5

0-0 1 2 tiJdS i.e6 1 3 i.xa7 lha7 14 'ii'e3 bS l:tb8 and Black's attack is the stronger,
15 c3 l:r.b7 16 f4 exf4 17 tLlxf4 i..xb3 1 8 Ernst-Sunye Neto, Manila Olympiad 1 992.
axb3 tLleS, Kotronias-Milov, FIDE World b) 1 2 tLla4 i.d7! leaves White's knight on
Ch., Groningen 1 997. a4 in some trouble: 13 eS (13 'ii'd2? i.xe3
White's main response is 1 1 i.xa7 l:txa7: 14 'ii'xe3 tLlc8! 1 5 eS tLlaS 1 6 i.e4 l:tb8 0-1
d1) 12 f4 exf4 (Black should caprure: Saldana-Zapf, correspondence 2000; and 1 3
12 ... 0-0?! 1 3 fS! is strong) 1 3 l:txf4 tLlg6 1 4 i.xa7? tLlxa7 Adams-Hjartarson, Paris
l:tffl 0-0 1 5 tLldS i..e 6 1 6 'iV 2 l:ta8 was [rapid] 1 994 show the precariousness of
equal in Kaminski-Milov, Moscow Olym White's position) 13 ...tLld5! 1 4 i.xa7 (or 1 4
piad 1 994. .id2 dxeS! 1 5 fxeS 'ic7! 1 6 l:the1 tLlce7 0-1
d2) 1 2 a4 i.e6 13 i.c4 0-0 14 l:tfd1 tLlg6 Coenen-Chuchelov, Fourmies 1 998)
1 5 g3 l:a8 1 6 tiJdS l:c8 1 7 c3 tLlce7 and 14 ...tLlxa7 1 5 exd6 i.xa4 1 6 tLlcS 1 6 ...i.c6
again Black had no problems, Naumann 17 tLlxe6 fxe6 18 'ii'x e6+ <ifi>f8 19 i.c4 'if6
Computer P ConNers, Lippstadt 1 999. 20 i.xdS 'ixe6 21 i.xe6 i.xg2 22 l:thg1
1 0 f4!? makes Black think a bit more, as i.c6 23 l:td4 l:td8 leaves White with insuffi
now 1 0 ... e5?! can be met effectively by 1 1 cient compensation for the piece, Collins
fS, when suddenly the knight is not so well Sulava, Istanbul 2000.
placed on e7. Play can continue with 1 0 ... b5 1 1 . . . l:!.xa 7 1 2 f4
1 1 0-0 tLlg6 12 l:tad1 (12 i.xa7 l:txa7 13 Or 12 'ie3 and now:
'ii'e3 0-0 1 4 l:tad1 l:td7 1 5 'ig3 eS!? 1 6 fS a) 12 ... 0-0 13 eS!? dS (De Vreugt-Moo,
tLlf4 1 7 tiJdS tiJhS 1 8 'ie3 tLle7! 1 9 c4 bxc4 Zug 2001) and now instead of 13 ... d5, I
20 i.xc4 tLlxdS 21 i.xdS tLlf6 was at least prefer 1 3 ... l:td7 as in the main game.
equal for Black, Acs-Oral, Varadero 2000 - b) 1 2 ... l:td7!? (preventing any tricks with
White's knight on b3 is very poor) 1 2...'ii'e 7 e4-e5) 1 3 f4 "iic 7 14 g4 i.b7 1 5 h4 0-0 1 6
13 l:td2 0-0 14 <ifi>h1 i.xe3 1 5 'ixe3 i.b7 1 6 gS tLlaS 1 7 bl tLlxb3 1 8 cxb3 (Sanchez
tLle2 l:r.fe8 1 7 c 3 l:r.ad8 with equality in Martin-Goczo, Oropesa del Mar 2000) and
Holrnsten-Oral, Istanbul Olympiad 2000. here I like the look of 1 8 ... d5!.
1 0 . . . b5 12 . . .0-0 13 e5!?
Perhaps deciding that Black will be at
least equal in any pawn-storming race,
White opens the d3-h7 diagonal and rums
his attentions to the centre.
1 3 . . . l:!.d7 !?

1 1 xa7
1 1 f4?! b4! looks promising for Black:
a) 1 2 tLlb1 aS 13 tiJ3d2 'ic7 14 4Jf3 a4
1 5 tLlbd2 dS 1 6 i.xa7 l:xa7 17 eS i.d7 1 8
'iV 2 b3! 1 9 a3 bxc2 20 i.xc2 0-0 2 1 <it>b 1

89
Sicilian Kan

Again we see how the rook can be useful cxd3 lt:\xd3 24 'ii'd 2 lt:\xe 1 25 'ii'x e1 "ilfc4
along the second rank. 26 f3 i.b7 27 tt:lf6 + g7 28 lt:\a5
Black can also block the centre and then 'ii'c 7 29 c3 'ii'xf4! 30 g3 'ii'd4 3 1
organise counterplay on the queenside: lt:\h5 + gxh5 3 2 lt:\xb 7 l:.bS 3 3 lt:\a5 dB
13 ...d5 14 'ii'h 5 lLlg6 1 5 g3 b4 t 6 lLle2 aS 1 7 34 Wc1 h6 35 tt:lb3 'ii'e4 + 36 'ii'c 2
lLlbd4 lLlxd4 1 8 lLlxd4 'ii'b 6 1 9 i..xg6 fxg6 'ii'e 1 + 37 lt:\c 1 .:td2 0-1
20 'ii'e 2 i..d7 21 'iitb t l:tc7 22 l:td2 was
agreed drawn in !.Rogers-Johansen, Mel Game 3 1
bourne 1 998. White's positional advantages Parma-Capelan
include a nice knight on d4, but Black's Solingen 1968
queenside counterplay mustn't be underes
timated. 1 e4 c5 2 tt:lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:\xd4 a6
1 4 'ii'e4 5 i.d3 i.c5 6 tt:lb3 i.a7 7 0-0 lt:\c6 8
Or 14 exd6 l:txd6 and now: 'ii'e 2 d6 9 ..i.. e 3 i.xe3
a) 1 5 lLle4 l:td5 16 lLlc3 l:td6 1 7 lLle4 l:td5 Black can resist exchanging on e3 for the
is a repetition of moves; if Black wants to time being, but normally he will have to
play on he could try 1 6 ...l:td7!?. acquiesce in the long run. After 9 ...lLlf6 1 0
b) 15 'ii'h S!? g6 1 6 'ii'c S 'ii'c 7 17 lLle4 c 4 Black can play:
looked a bit better for White in Jens a) 1 O... eS 1 1 lLlc3 i..g4 12 f3 i..e6 1 3
Haldemann, Arco 2000, but I prefer 15 ... f5!, l:tfd 1 0-0 1 4 i.xa7 l:txa7 1 5 iVe 3 l:ta8 1 6
killing the bishop on d3 and preventing l:td2 and White's pressure down the d-ftle
lLle4. Black then has time to pursue queen ensures an edge, Malakhov-Landa, Elista
side operations. 1997.
14 . . . g6 1 5 exd6 l:bd6 1 6 'ii'e 3 'ii'c 7 1 7 b) 10 ... 0-0 1 1 lLlc3 'ii'c7 12 l:tact i..xe3
lt:\e4 lt:\d 5! (Black needs to do this if he wishes to play
... b7-b6) 13 iVxe3 lLle5 1 4 l:tfd l b6 1 5 i..e2
i.b7 16 f4 lLlg6 and we have transposed to
the note to Black's 1 4th move.
For 9 ...lLlge7 see Game 32.
1 0 'ii'x e3 tt:lf6

If anything I prefer Black's position. His


pieces coordinate well and his king is
slightly safer than White's. White's next
move compounds his problems by allowing
Black to gain a tempo later on. 1 8 'ii'f2 !?
(Ribli) looks best. 1 1 c4
1 8 'ii'g 3? l:.ddS 1 9 hf1 lt:\ce7! 20 'ii'f2 Setting up the Maroczy Bind is the main
lt:\f5 21 de 1 tt:lb4 22 'iPb1 xd3! 23 point to White's decision to castle short. In

90
5 i. d3 i. c 5

contrast, 1 1 tbc3 promises nothing: 1 1 ... 0-0 I believe Black should probably play
12 .l:.ad1 'ii'c 7 13 'ito>h1 b5 14 f4 i.b7 1 5 more quietly with 1 4... b6, for example 1 5 f4
'ii'h3 b4 1 6 tDe2 .l:.fdB 1 7 .l:.del h6! (taking lbg6 16 g3 i.b7 1 7 .l:.acl l:tfdB 1 8 a3 .l:.acB
the sting out of a possible e4-e5) and if any 19 tbd4 i.aB and White was only a little bit
thing Black was a bit better in Padevsky better in Karpov-Hiibner, Graz 1 972.
Smyslov, Monte Carlo 1 968. 1 5 i.xc4 'iixc4 1 6 l:!.xd6
1 1 . . 0 0 1 2 ltJc3 ltJe5
.
-

The alternative way to play for Black is to


accept the 'Kalashnikov' pawn strucrure
(reached after 1 e4 c5 2 tt:Jf3 tbc6 3 d4 cxd4
4 lDxd4 e5 5 lbb5 d6 6 c4) with 12 ... e5!? 1 3
.l:.fd1 i.e6 1 4 i.e2 and now 1 4. . .'ii'b 8!.

1 6 . . . e5?
After this move Black is lost, but his po
sition is already difficult in any case:
a) 16 ... b5 17 e5?! lbg4 18 'ii'f3 .l:.bB 1 9
.l:.d4 lDxe5 20 'ii'g3 'ii'c 7 21 .l:.cl f6 2 2 lDxb5
'ii'b6 was unclear in Klovans-Tunik, Par
With this move Black keeps defending dubice 1 994. The move 17 l:tcl ! , however,
d6, prepares to play ... .l:.fdB, and presents an looks a lot more threatening to me:
option of opposing queens with ...'ii'a7. Play 1 7 .....tb7 (or 1 7 ...lbg4 1 8 'ii'g3) 1 8 lba5 'ii'c 7
can then continue 1 5 :d2 l:td8 16 .l:.ad1 (16 19 e5! lbg4 20 'ii'b 6 'ii'xb6 21 .l:.xb6 i.cB 22
.l:.cl !? prevents Black's next move) 1 6 ... b5!? .l:.e1 and this ending looks very suspicious
17 cxb5 axb5. Now 18 lbxb5?! .l:.xa2 1 9 for Black.
.l:.xd6 l1xd6 20 .l:.xd6 tbd4! 21 lD3xd4 .l:.a1 + b) 1 6 ...'ii'c 7! 1 7 .l:.ad1 is also better for
22 i.fl exd4 was good for Black in the White, although after 1 7 ... b5 1 8 e5 lDeB 1 9
game Nicevski-Gheorghiu, Athens 1 969, .l:.dB i.b7 Black is hanging i n there.
but I prefer 18 i.xb5! lbb4 19 tbc1 tbxa2 1 7 l:lxf6!
20 tD1 xa2 ..txa2 when White's passed b This exchange sacrifice is simply devas
pawn coupled with the pressure on the d tating here.
ftle promise an edge. 1 7 . . . gxf6 1 8 ltJd5 .l:td8 1 9 ltJxf6 + f8
1 3 i.e2 'iic 7 1 4 l:!.fd 1 20 .l:l.c1 i.e6 21 h4 'iid 3 22 'iih 6 + e7
After 14 l:tacl Black can grab on c4 as 23 'iig 5 d6 24 ltJc5 'iib 5 25 ltJxe6
14 ...tbxc4 1 5 ..txc4 'ii'xc4 16 lDd5? can be fxe6
answered by 1 6 ... tbxd5!. Instead 1 6 .l:.fd1 Or 25 .. .'iti>xe6 26 lbg4 l:t8 27 'iff6+ 'ito>d7
'ii'b4 17 .l:.d4 'ii'h 6 1 8 ltcd 1 d5 leads to a 28 tbxe5+ 'it>eB 29 .l:.c7.
level ending after 1 9 exd5 exd5 20 tbxd5 26 'iid 2 + 1 -0
tbxd5 21 .l:.xd5 'ii'xe3 22 fxe3 i.e6. White mates after 26 ...'ito>e7 27 .l:.c7+
1 4 . . . ltJxc4?! 'ito>xf6 28 'ii'g5.

91
Sicilian K a n

Uncovering the d-ftle. White has a


Game 32 straightforward plan of ganging up on d6-
Herschei-Fiensch pawn.
Comspondence 1979 1 4 . . . l:!.c8
14 ...tt:\c8 is very passive: 1 5 tt:ldS aS 1 6
1 e4 c5 2 ltJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ltJxd4 a6 .l:.acl b 6 1 7 tt:la 1 ! (this knight is heading
5 .i.d3 .i.c5 6 ltJb3 .i.a7 7 'ir'e2 ltJc6 8 somewhere nice!) 1 7 ... f6 1 8 tt:lc2 .l:.f7 1 9
..te3 d6 tt:la3 l:td7 20 tt:lbS .l:.b8 (Unzicker-Petrosian,
Another possibility for Black is to delay Palma de Mallorca 1 969) and now either 21
the advance of the d-pawn: 8 .. .'!2Jge7 9 0-0 f4 or 21 g3 (preparing f2-f4) would have
0-0 10 c4 eS 1 1 tt:\c3 tt:ld4!? (1 1 ...d6 trans kept a significant advantage.
poses to the note to Black's 1 1 th move) 1 2 1 5 .l:.d2 ltJa5
xd4 exd4 1 3 tt:ldS d 6 1 4 l:tadl tt:lc6?! Originally this position was assessed as
(14 ... tt:\xd5 15 cxdS looks only a little better equal by ECO, and this seems to have
for White) 15 'it>h 1 i.e6 16 f4 .l:.e8 17 'ifhS caught out quite a few players who were
g6 1 8 'ifh6 .i.xdS (Leko-Kramnik, Wijk aan religiously following the 'bible'!
Zee 2000) and now Leko's suggestion of 1 9 1 6 ltJxa5 'ir'xa5 1 7 .l:.xd6 ..txc4 1 8 l:!.d7!
cxdS! looks very good for White, for exam Naturally! The double attack nets White a
ple 19 ...tt:lb4 20 f5 'iff6 21 i.bl d3 22 a3 pawn.
tt:\c2 23 .l:.xd3. 1 8 . . . ..txf 1 1 9 .l:.xf1
9 0-0 ltJge7 19 .U.xe7 also looks good.
Experience has shown that this devel
opment is not very effective when White
can play c2-c4.
1 0 c4!
10 tt:\c3 transposes to the note to White's
1 Oth move in Game 30, but 10 c4 looks
stronger.
1 0 . . . 0-0 1 1 ltJc3 .i.xe3
1 1 ...e5 12 .ixa7 .l:.xa7 13 .l:.fd l i.e6 1 4
'ife3 .Ua8 reaches the same position, albeit
with an extra move played by both sides.
1 2 'ir'xe3 e5 1 3 .l:.fd1 .i.e6 1 4 .i.f 1

1 9 . . . 'ir'b4??
Given that this was a postal game, there's
really no excuse for this incredible blunder.
I suspect, however, that Black was simply
following what had gone on before.
19 ...tt:\c6! is best: 20 .l:txb7 .U.b8 21 l:txb8
.l:.xb8 22 b3 tt:ld4 23 'it>h 1 .l:.c8 24 .l:tcl h6
and it won't be easy for White to convert
his extra pawn, Leroy-Davies, correspon
dence 1 982.
20 a3!
The 'stem game' had continued 20 'ifgS??

92
5 i. d 3 i. c 5

and was eventually drawn in Lewandowitz available as in Game 30, but 1 3 ...d 5 fol
Herschel (!), correspondence 1 973. A dou lowed by pushing the 9ueenside pawns
ble piece of luck for Herschel! looks okay (compare with the note to
20 .. .'ii' x b2 21 lL:Jd1 Black's 13th move in Game 30).
And White wins a piece ... 1 1 0-0-0
21 . . .'ii'a 1 22 l:be7 b5 23 'ii'b 3 llc 1 24 White can also go for it on the kingside
lL:Je3 xf1 + 25 lL:Jxf1 'ii'd 4 26 'ii'd 5 'ii'c3 immediately with 1 1 g4!? and now:
27 'ii'd 6 a5 28 xeS b4 29 xa5 b3 30 a) 1 1 ...b5 12 0-0-0 0-0 13 gS lLle8
llb5 1 -0 (13 ...lLld7 14 i..e2 leaves the d6-pawn vul
nerable) 14 f4 b4 1 5 lLle2 aS 16 ltJbd4
Game 33 lLlxd4 17 ltJxd4 and White was a bit better
Kengis-B.Nevednichy in Anand-Ninov, Baguio City 1 987.
USSR 1979 b) 1 1 ...lLlxg4! 12 'ii'g3 lLlf6 13 'ir'xg7 l:.g8
1 4 'ii'h6 i..d7 1 5 0-0-0 'ii'e 7 1 6 lLla4 0-0-0
1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lL:Jxd4 a6 17 ltJb6+ ..ti>c7 1 8 lLlxd7 l:.xd7 19 l:.hg1
5 i.d3 i.c5 6 lL:Jb3 i.a7 7 'ii'e 2 lL:Jc6 8 l:.dd8 was e9ual in Ebeling-Haapasalo,
lL:Jc3 d6 9 i.e3 i.xe3 Tampere 1991 .
For many years this was the main line be 1 1 . . . 0-0 1 2 f4
fore black players began allowing White to
exchange on a7 (see Game 28).
1 0 'ii'x e3 lL:Jf6
Also possible is 10 ...lLlge7!?, developing
in a similar fashion as in Game 30. Now 1 1
0-0 0-0 leads to similar play to that in the
note about 10 0-0 in Game 30, the only
difference being that the bishops have al
ready been exchanged.
White can also play 1 1 0-0-0 and now:
a) 1 1 ...e5 12 f4! exf4 13 'ii'x f4 0-0 1 4
i.e2! was good for White i n Renet-Farago,
Budapest 1 987. The game continued
14 ...ltJg6 1 5 'ii'g3 ltJgeS 16 l:.d2 f5? 17 exfS 1 2 . . . 'ii'c 7
i.xfS 1 8 l:thd 1 l%f6 1 9 ltJd4 lLlxd4 20 .l:txd4 The line 12 ... b5? 13 eS! is good for
'ii'c 7 21 i.c4+!! lLlxc4 22 ltJdS 'ii'c S 23 White, as 13 ... b4 fails to 14 exf6 bxc3 1 5
lLlxf6+ ..ti>h8 24 lLle4 'ii'c 6 25 'ii'c 3 lLleS 26 'ii'e4.
lLlxd6 and Black resigned. The other way to prevent e4-e5 is with
b) 1 1 ...0-0 12 f4 'ii'c 7?! 13 'ii'h 3! lLlb4 14 1 2 ... e5 1 3 fS bS and now:
.l:thf1 eS 1 5 fS dS 16 exdS lLlexdS 1 7 lLlxdS a) 14 g4!? lLlxg4 1 5 'ii'g3 and now instead
lLlxdS 1 8 'ii'h 4! lLlf6 19 g4 e4 20 g5! exd3 21 of 1 5 ...ltJf6 16 l:thg1 lLle8 17 lLldS which
l:.xd3 gave White a strong attack in Ko gave White a strong attack in S.Hansen
rolev-Batakovs, correspondence 1 984, for Fries Nielsen, Aarhus 1 999, Black should
example 21 ...lLlh5 22 'ii'x hS i.xfS 23 l:.xfS play 1 5 ...'ii'g 5+ 16 l:.d2 'ii' f4 17 lLldS 'ii'xg3
g6 24 'ii'h4 gxfS 25 l:.h3 f6 26 g6!. Instead 1 8 hxg3 when White certainly has compen
of 1 2 ... 'ii'c 7?!, I believe Black should start sation, but there's no obvious way to con
immediate 9ueenside operations with tinue.
12 ... b5. After 13 eS Black has no ...l:.d7 b) 14 i..e2! b4 15 lLla4 'ii'c 7 1 6 g4 i.d7

93
Sicilian Kan

1 7 gS liJd4 1 8 liJxd4 exd4 1 9 l:hd4 ltJxe4 ltJa4 is certainly worthy of attention) 16 ... aS
20 lhe4 .txa4 21 .td3 l:.ae8 (or 2 1 ....tc6 with a further split:
22 l:tc4 .U.fe8 23 'ifh3 'ifas 24 .l:td 1 .tbs 2S b1) 17 'ifh3 eS? 1 8 f5 a4 19 liJd2 liJcS 20
l::th4!) 22 l:.e1 and White's advanced pawns i.c4 b3 21 g6 hxg6 22 .l:txg6 ltJe7 (or
on the kingside promise a clear edge, Chris 22 ... bxa2 23 .l:txg7+! 'ifi>xg7 24 .l:tg1 + 'ifi>f6 2S
toph-Hollis, Hastings 1 96S. 'ifh4 mate) 23 .l:tg4 bxa2
1 3 g4!?
This is the most ambitious way to play. If
Black declines the pawn offer then White's
attack is quicker than normal as he hasn't
been forced to play a preparatory l:.hgl .
The main alternative is 1 3 .l:thg1 bS Qogi
cally Black gets on with his queenside op
era tions) when the assessment of the posi
tion depends upon the relative speeds and
stn:ngths of the two attacks. Play continues
1 4 t;4 b4 1 S gS

24 .l:tdg1!! (go on - have another queen!)


24...al'ii' + 2S liJb1 and White has a winning
attack, for example 2S ... liJxfS 26 exfS liJe6
27 .l:th4 g6 28 f6 and White mates. I
couldn't resist putting in this line, but I
should point out that Black has a strong
improvement with 1 7 ... .ta6! 1 8 eS .txd3 1 9
exd6 'ii'a7 20 l:txd3 a4 2 1 liJbd4 liJxd4 22
liJxd4 'ireS, which is very unclear.
b2) 17 liJbd4 liJxd4 1 8 liJxd4 liJcS 1 9
liJbS 'ii'b 6 20 i.c4 and now:
and now: b21) 20... .l:td8? 21 fS .ta6 22 g6 fxg6 23
a) 1 S...liJe8 1 6 liJe2 aS 17 liJbd4 liJxd4 .:txg6! hxg6 24 fxg6 was winning for White
18 'ifxd4 .ta6 19 i.xa6! (19 'ifi>b 1 eS 20 in Virtual Chess X-P ConNerS, Paderborn
'ife3 a4 21 .l:tg3 was unclear in Arnason (computer tournament) 1 999, as there is no
Suetin, Sochi 1 980) 19 ... l:txa6 20 f5 .l:tc6 21 good defence to 'ifh3.
'ifd3 exfS 22 exfS dS 23 f6! gxf6 24 liJd4 b22) I wouldn't want to question a com
'iff4+ 2S b1 l::tc4 26 liJfS 'ifi>h8 27 'ifxdS puter, but 20 ... dS! looks like an improve
'ife4 28 liJh6 'ifxc2+ 29 a1 .l:tc7 30 gxf6 ment: 21 exdS .ta6 22 g6! .txbS (22... hxg6?
a4 31 'ii'gS 'ir'g6 32 'ii'e3 and Black resigned 23 dxe6 .txbS 24 exf7+ .l:txf7 2S .txf7+
in Spitz-Larrouy, correspondence 1 993 on 'ifi>xf7 26 l:.dS wins) 23 gxh7+ (23 gxf7+
account of 32 ... 'ifxf6 33 .l:tdfl 'ifc6 34 'ir'gS .l:txf7 24 dxe6 .txc4 2S exf7+ .txf7 26 'ii'e S
'ii'g6 3S 'ii'e S+ f6 36 lhg6 fxeS 37 .l:txf8 g6 looks good for Black) 23 ... 'ifi>h8 24 .txbS
mate. 'ii'x bS 2S 'it'eS f6 26 'it'c7 gS 27 fxgS 'it'c4
b) 1 S ...liJd7! (many annotators have not 28 'ifi>b1 .l:tac8 29 'it'a7 with massive compli
mentioned this despite the fact that it looks cations.
more narural than 1 S ...liJe8) 1 6 liJe2 (16 b3) 17 fS a4 1 8 g6!? fxg6 (1 8 ... axb3? 1 9

94
5 i.. d3 i.. c 5

gxh7+ h8 20 gS g6 21 fxg6 fxg6 22 Halle 1978, I like 1 8 ...l:tb8! intending ... b5-
xg6 tt'lf6 23 eS! [threatening xf6+] b4 with good counterplay.
23 ... tt'lxh7 24 exd6 f7 25 h6 and White 1 5 . . . b4 1 6 lLle2 a5 1 7 Wh3
wins) 19 tt'lbd4 tt'lxd4 20 xd4 (20 tt'lxd4
tt'leS) 20 ... b3!? 21 fxg6 tt'leS 22 gxh7+ h8
and if I had to choose, I would take Black,
Atanasov-Rodin, correspondence 1 984.
Finally, the line 13 h3 bS 1 4 g4 tt'lb4 1 5
gS tt'ld7! leads t o the note t o White's 1 5th
move.

1 7 . . . exf5?
The rather obvious-looking 17 ... tt'lde5! is
suggested as an improvement on
MegaCorr2 (a database of over 350,000
correspondence games) without any further
analysis. Now the same plan doesn't work
for White: 1 8 tt'lf4 a4! and there is no tt'ldS
1 3 . . . b5 so White is forced to retreat with the b3-
13. ..tt'lxg4!? 14 'iWg3 tt'lf6 15 l:thgl tt'le8 knight. Therefore the most logical way for
obviously promises a strong initiative to ward for White looks to be 1 8 f6, which led
White, who has scored well in practice. One me to some incredible complications: 1 8... a4
recent example is 1 6 h4!? e7 17 l:tgS f6 19 fxg7 l:td8! (19 ...xg7? 20 tt'lg3! tt'lxd3+
1 8 l:tg3 g6?! (18 .. .f5 1 9 l::.g S tt'lb4 20 tt'ld4 21 lhd3 tt'leS 22 tt'lhS+! g6 23 tt'lf6
tt'lf6 was unclear in Ivanovic-Velikov, Saint tt'lxd3+ 24 'ifi>d2! and mate follows) 20 tt'lg3
John 1 988) 19 f5 tt'leS 20 tt'ld4 i.d7 21 fxg6 (after 20 tt'lbd4 tt'lxd4 21 tt'lxd4 a3! it's
hxg6 22 i.c4! and now: Black's attack which is stronger) 20... axb3
a) 22 ... tt'lxc4 23 l:txg6+ tt'lg7 24 l:tdgl 21 tt'lhS (threatening mate with tt'lf6+)
tt'leS (24...l:tf7 25 l:th6 wins) 25 l:t6g3! and
there is no good answer to l:r.h3.
b) 22...tt'lg7 23 l:r.dgl f7 24 tt'lfS! tt'lxfS
25 exfS l:th8 26 e4 bS 27 l:txg6 1 -0
Freiknecht-Scheidt, correspondence 1 998.
1 4 g 5 lZ:ld7 1 5 f5!?
Another way to continue the attack is 1 5
h3 tt'lb4 1 6 a3?! ( 1 6 bl ! looks stronger)
1 6 ...tt'lxd3+ 1 7 xd3 dS! 1 8 eS and here,
instead of 1 8 ... i.b7?! 19 l:r.hgl .U.ac8 20 h4
tt'lcS?! 21 tt'lxcS xeS 22 d4 aS? 23 xeS
l:txcS 24 tt'le2 which gave White a big posi
tional advantage in T.Giorgadze-Bohlig,

95
Sicilia n Kan

Black has two possibilities: 22 .:.xd3 e5 23 f6 + ! gxf6 24 Wh6! !


a) 21 ...lbxd3+? 22 l:txd3 'ike7 23 'ikh4!! xd3 + 25 b 1 ! fxg5
(23 lDf6+ 'ilf'xf6 24 gxf6 bxa2 25 Wd2 a1'ilf' Or 25 .. oWh8 26 g6! fxg6 27 fxg6.
26 l:ha1 l:ha1 27 'ikh4 e5! wins for Black) 26 f6 Wxf6 27 Wxf6
23 ... bxa2 24 Wd2 a1'ik 25 l:ha1 l:.xa1 26 The smoke has cleared, leaving White
l:lh3! h6 27 lDf6+ 'ilf'xf6 28 gxf6 and White with a winning material advantage.
wms. 27 og4 28 Wg5 + h8 29 Wt6 + g8
0 0

b) 21 ...lbg4! 22 'il'xg4 (or 22 e5 lbcxe5 23 30 d4 e5 31 h3 h5 32 Wg5 + g6


xh7+ Wxh7 24 g6+ Wxg6 and Black 33 Wxh5 gxh3 34 Wd5 i.e6 35 xe6
wins) 22 ...lbe5 23 'ilf'h3 lbxd3+ 24 'ii'xd3 h2 36 l:.xg6 + 1 -0
bxa2 25 Wd2 'il'c5 looks winning for Black.
It may be that this is just the tip of the Game34
iceberg and that there are several other pos J . Horvath-Farago
sibilities for both sides, but it does show Budapest 1987
you how a whole line can be (sometimes
incorrectly) written off just as a result of 1 e4 c5 2 f3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 xd4 a6
one high-profile game. 5 i.d3 i.c5 6 b3 i.a7 7 0-0
1 8 exf5 de5 1 9 f4 a4 20 d5 'jj'd 8 The immediate 7 'iig4 is not so effective:
21 .:l.hg 1 ! 7 ...lbf6 8 'iig3 (the point is that 8 'ilf'xg7?
runs into 8 ...l1g8 9 'ilf'h6 x2+!) 8 .. od6 9
lbc3 lbc6 10 0-0 h5!? (10... b5, 10 ...lbe5 and
10 ... 0-0 are also playable, but I like this
move) and now:
a) 1 1 Wh 1 lbe5 12 f4 h4 1 3 'ilf'e1 (13
'ikxg7?? lbg6!) 13. ..lbxd3 1 4 cxd3 h3 15 g3
b5 and Black's two bishops will point im
pressively towards the white king, Mainka
Kengis, Germany 1 997.
b) 1 1 'ii'xg7 (1 can't find any examples of
this move) 1 1 ...l::tg8 12 'ikh6 lbg4 13 'ilf'xh5
(13 'ii'h7 lDf6 repeats moves) 1 3. ..'ilf'f6 1 4
lbd 1 'ikg7! 1 5 'il'h3 l:lh8 1 6 'ii'g3 l::tx h2 and
2 1 o o oxd3 + ? ...'ii'h 8! is corning.
Another mistake, although by now Black c) 1 1 i.e3 h4 12 'ifxg7 l::th7 13 'ikg5 l::th 5
is in a difficult position. Gipslis gives the 1 4 'il'g7 l::th7 is a draw by repetition.
line 21...axb3 22 lDf6+ gxf6 23 'ilf'h6! lbg6! d) 1 1 i.g5 lDe5 12 i.h4 Wf8 13 l::ta d1
(23 ... Wh8 24 gxf6 l::tg8 25 l::tg7 lbxd3+ 26 lbg6 14 e2 lbxh4 1 5 'ilf'xh4 'ilf'e7 16 'ii'g3
:xd3 xfS 27 l::th 3! and White wins) 24 e5 1 7 'iid3 i.e6 1 8 'ii'xd6 ('/2-1!2 Boey
fxg6 fxg6 25 xg6! l::ta7 26 gxf6 hxg6! and Arnlind, correspondence 1 975) 18 ...'il'xd6
then Nunn continues the analysis with 27 19 l:txd6 xb3 20 axb3 d4 21 lDd5 i.c5
.l:l.xg6+ Wf7 28 l::te 1 ! lbe5 29 l::tg 7+ We6 30 22 l1xf6 gxf6 23 lDxf6 is unclear.
1:.xa7 bxa2 31 'ii'h 3+ Wd5 32 'ii'b 3+ Wc6 7 o oc6 8 Wg4 f6
o

33 'il'xa2 'with a slight material plus for For the safer 8 ...'ikf6, see Game 35.
White together with a raging attack'. Indeed, 9 Wxg7
it's very doubtful that Black can survive in For 9 'ikg3?! d6 10 lbc3, see the note to
this final position. White's 7th move.

96
5 1J.. d3 1J.. c 5

9 . . . J:tg8 1 0 'ifh6 i.xg4 l:txg4 was unclear in Van der Wiel


Ehlvest, Groningen 1 997.
c22) 12 ltJc3!

White is a pawn up but Black certainly


has some compensation in the form of
open lines and active pieces. with a further split:
10 . . . l:tg6!? c221) 12 ... dxe4 13 i.g5 l:tg6 (13 ... ltJfg4
The main alternative is 1 0 ...ltJe5 and 1 4 i.xd8 ltJxh6 1 5 i.c7! ltJf3+ 1 6 h1
now: ltJh4 17 g3 ltJ4f5 18 ltJxe4 [Ribli] leaves
a) 1 1 'ir'h3 ltJfg4! 12 ltJc3? (better is 1 2 White just a pawn up for nothing) 14 'ir'h4
'ir'xh7 ltJf6 1 3 'ir'h3 ltJfg4 and probably i.d7 (or 1 4...ltJf3+ 1 5 i.x3 ex3 1 6 ltJe4
White should now repeat with 1 4 'ir'h7 as l:txg5 1 7 ltJxg5 fxg2 1 8 l:tfd 1) 1 5 ltJxe4 i.c6
after 14 i.e2 I like 14 ... 'ir'f6 1 5 'ii'g3 'ii'h8!) 1 6 i.xf6 'ii'd 5 1 7 i.xe5 'ir'xe5 1 8 i.f3 1 -0
12 ...'ir'f6 13 'ir'g3. Now 13 ... ltJ3+ 14 gx3 was a pretty convincing argument for White
itJh6 1 5 i.xh6 l:hg3+ 16 hxg3 'ii'x h6 17 in the game Hellers-Sjoberg, Malmo 1 994.
g2 was better for White in Korneev c222) Ribli gives the line 1 2 ... d4!? 13 l:td 1
Gonzalez Gil, La Coruna 1 999, but ltJeg4 14 i.xg4 ltJxg4 1 5 'ii'x h7 ltJf6 1 6
13 ...l:tg6! looks very strong to me: 14 'ir'f4 'ii'h4 .:.g4 1 7 'ir'h6 l:tg6 1 8 'ir'f4 and con
ltJ3+ 1 5 Wh1 'ii'h4 and Black is winning. cludes that White has a clear advantage. I
b) 1 1 i.f4? ltJeg4! 1 2 'ir'h4 (or 12 'ii'h3 agree with this, but I would point out that
e5! followed by ... d7-d5!) 12 ...ltJx2 13 .l:tx2 Black keeps some practical chances after
l:.g4 14 'ii'h6 lOgS 15 'ii'x h7 i.x2+ 1 6 1 8 ... 'ii'e 7! 1 9 ltJe2 e5 20 'ii' f3 i.g4 21 'ii'd3
x2 l:txf4+ 1 7 'it>g1 'ii'g5 was winning for 0-0-0.
Black in Erdelyi-Szeberenyi, Budapest 2001 . 1 1 'ifh3
c) 1 1 i.e2!, covering the 3- and g4- 1 1 'ii'd2?! ltJe5 12 h 1 ? ltJfg4! 13 'ir'e2
squares, looks to be White's strongest re ltJxh2 was winning for Black in Davie
sponse: Kaplan, Oerebro 1 966. Possible, however,
c1) After 1 1 ...b5, Ljubojevic's recom is 1 1 'ir'h4!? and now:
mendation of 1 2 i.e3! l:tg6 (or 12 ...ltJeg4 1 3 a) 1 1 ...l:tg4 12 'ir'h3 (a little nuance so
i.xg4 l0xg4 1 4 'ir'xh7) 1 3 'ir'h3 leaves Black that the rook blocks the c8-h3 diagonal)
with insufficient compensation for the 1 2...ltJe5 13 ltJ1d2 d5 (13 ... b5!? may be
pawn. stronger) 1 4 ltJ3! ltJx3+ 1 5 'ir'xf3 dxe4 1 6
c2) 1 1 ...d5 and now: i.xe4 i.b8 ( 1 6. . ..:.xe4 1 7 i.g5!) 1 7 h3 .:.gs
c21) 12 i.g5 ltJeg4! 13 i.xf6 ltJxf6 1 4 1 8 i.xb7 i.xb7 1 9 'ii'xb7 with a clear plus
exd5 'ir'xd5 1 5 g3 'ir'f5 1 6 ltJ1d2 ltJg4 1 7 for White, Santo Roman-Koch, French Ch.

97
Sicilian K a n

1 996. pawn on h5 looks a litde silly.


b) 1 1 ...lLle5 12 .ie2 b5 is interesting as 1 0 i.g5 'ii'g 6 1 1 'ii'h 4
White can no longer play .ie3. Play can
continue 13 .ig5 .ib7 14 lLl1d2 h6 1 5
.ixf6 nxf6 (Ljubojevic-Lobron, Plovdiv
1 983) and now 1 6 c3 (Ljubojevic) keeps a
slight advantage. Instead, the game contin
ued 16 :ad 1 ? tt:lg6 17 'ii'x h6 lLlf4 18 'ii'h 8+
We7 19 'ii'x d8+ nxd8 20 .if3 nh8?? 21 e5
and now Black could have won with the
pleasing 21...nfh6 22 g3 lLle2+! 23 .ixe2
nxh2 24 .if3 nh 1 + 25 .ixh 1 nxh 1 mate.
1 1 . . . e5

1 1 . . . f6
In Popovic-Schlosser, Brno 1 992, Black
played the 'trappy' 1 1 ...lLle5?? (intending 1 2
.ixe7?? tt:lf3+) but had to resign after 12
.ie2! as there is no good way to deal with
the twin threats of 13 .ixe7 and 13 .ih5!.
1 2 i.d2
12 .if4 lLlb4 13 .id6 lLlxd3 14 cxd3 lLlc6
1 5 l:.fe 1 tt:le5 1 6 'ii'h3 lLlf7 1 7 .ig3 0-0 was
fine for Black in Remus-Figueiras, corres
pondence 1 997.
Planning ...d7-d5. 1 2 . . . tt:le5!
1 2 'ii'h 4 An improvement over the earlier
White offers a draw by repetition, which 1 2...'ii' f7 1 3 Wh 1 g5 14 'ii'h6 'ii'g6 1 5 'ii'h3
is accepted. Playing on involves some risk: lLle5 16 f4 gxf4 1 7 nxf4, which gave White
1 2 g3 (Alben-Varela, Buenos Aires 1 999) an edge in Popovic-Martinovic, Novi Sad
and now I like 1 2... h5! 1 3 tt:lc3 d6 14 'ii'g2 2000.
h4, with real counterplay against the white 1 3 ..te2 'ii'f7 1 4 Wh1 g5! 1 5 'ii'h 6 tt:\7g6
king. 16 f4
1 2 . . . l:.g4 1 3 'ii'h 6 J:.g6 1 4 'ii'h 4 l:.g4 1 5 Blasting open the f-ftle, but this does give
'ii'h 6 l:tg6 % - Yz away the e5-square forever. I know that the
move 1 6 g3, intending to recapture on f4
Game 35 with the g-pawn, is more thematic but there
Berthelot-Velikov is an obvious risk to the white king along
Trignac 200 1 those long diagonals: 1 6 ... b5! 17 f4 gxf4 1 8
gxf4 tt:lc4! 1 9 f5 exf5 20 ltJdS! (20 exf5?
1 e4 c5 2 tt:lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt:lxd4 a6 tt:lge5 21 .ih5? loses to 21....ib7+) 20 ... d6!
5 i.d3 i.c5 6 tt:lb3 i.a7 7 0-0 tt:lc6 8 and I would have to favour Black in this
'ii'g 4 'ti'f6 9 tt:lc3 tt:lge7 very messy position.
After 9 ... h5?! White simply retreats with 1 6 . . . gxf4 1 7 i.xf4 tt:lxf4 1 8 1:1xf4 <j;e 7
1 0 'ii'e 2 and will continue with .ie3. The 1 9 llaf1

98
5 i.. d3 i.. c 5

1 9 i.h5?! 'iff8! 20 'ifxf8+ .:txf8 gives


Black a better ending due to his dominating Game 36
knight on e5. Shirov-Korneev
Spain 1998

1 e4 c5 2 tt'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt'lxd4 a6


5 i.. d 3 i..c 5 6 tt'lb3 .1La7 7 0-0 tt'lc6 8 c4
d6
After 8 ...l"Llge7 9 l"Llc3 0-0 White should
revert back to the 'ife2/ i.e3 plan (10 'ife2
d6 1 1 i.e3 transposes to Game 32). Instead
play can continue 10 h1 e5 1 1 f4 exf4 12
i.xf4 (Ulibin-Bologan, Calcutta 1 999) and
now Bologan gives the equalising line
1 2... i.b8! (very aesthetic!) 13 i.xb8 .:txb8 14
'ifd2 d6 1 5 .:tad1 l"Lle5.
1 9 . . . i..e 3! 9 tt'lc3 tt'lf6 10 'iti>h1
White wins the f-pawn but Black's con
trol of the dark squares and powerful knight
situated on e5 provide sufficient compensa-
cion.
20 'ilixf6 + 'ilixf6 21 .l:txf6 b5 22 h4?
White's plan to expand on the kingside is
doomed to fail. 22 l"Lld1 i.g5 23 .:t6f2, with
the plan of opposing Black's knight with
l"Llc5-d3 (or l"Lld4-f3), is much stronger.
22 . . . .l:tg8 23 'it>h2 l:.g7 24 'iti>h3 .ib7 25
tt'la5 l:.ag8! 26 tt'lxb7
Or 26 g4 i.a8 and White's position col
lapses. Black threatens both ... b5-b4 and
...l"Llxg4. Signalling a different plan to the one in
26 . . . l:f.g3 + 27 'iti>h2 lbg2 + 28 'iti>h 1 volving 'ife2 and i.e3. White intends to
attack on the kingside with f2-f4 and/ or
i.g5, hoping to exploit the absence of a
dark-squared defender on the kingside.
10 'ife2 0-0 1 1 i.e3 would transpose to a
line considered in Game 3 1 .
1 0 . . . h5!?
Dissuading White from playing an Im
mediate f2-f4 on account of ...l"Llg4. Black
has two other important alternatives:
a) 1 0...e5 (again preparing ...l"Llg4) 1 1
i.e2! i.e6 (1 1 ...h6 1 2 f4 exf4 1 3 i.xf4 l"Lle5
14 c5 i.b8 1 5 cxd6 'ifxd6 1 6 'ifxd6 i.xd6
17 .:tad1 and 1 1 ...0-0 12 f4 exf4 13 i.xf4
28 . . . .ig 1 ! 0-1 l"Lle5 14 i.g5 both look good for White) 1 2

99
Sicilia n Kan

f4 h6 1 3 'it'd3 'tlfe7? 1 4 ltJdS xdS 15 cxdS White is able to unleash a strong attack on
l2Jd4 16 fxeS dxeS 17 l2Jxd4 .ixd4 18 'it'g3! the queenside. Perhaps 1 5 ... d8 is a try.
left Black struggling in Bellia-Haldemann, 1 6 lt'lb5! axb5 1 7 cxb5 .tea 1 8 c 1
Arco 1 999. ..tc5 1 9 lt'ld4 'it>b8 20 b4 b6 2 1 a4 h4
b) 10 ... 0-0 and now: 22 aS lt'lh5 23 .txh4 g5 24 'ili'xg5 f6 25
b1) 1 1 'ife2?! eS 1 2 gS h6 1 3 h4 gS 'i'e3 'ili'g7 26 g4 lt'lf4 27 bxc5 lt'lxe2 28
1 4 .ig3 e6 was fine for Black in Sandvik lL:lxe2 xh4 29 c6 c8 30 'i'xb6 + 'it>aS
Kauko, Finnish Team Ch. 1 998. 31 c7 1 -0
b2) 11 f4 'ifc7 12 .id2 l2Jd4 13 cl
l2Jxb3 (there is no need to rush this; Game37
1 3. ..d7 is preferable) 14 axb3 d7 15 g4 Shirov-Agrest
c6 16 gS l2Je8?! (Black should play the European Team Ch., Leon 200 1
more natural 16 ... l2Jd7, not fearing 17 b4
d4 1 8 bS? on account of 1 8 ... l2Jc5!) 1 7 b4 1 e4 c5 2 lt'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt'lxd4 a6
'i*'e7 1 8 bS axbS 19 cxbS d7 20 eS! gave 5 .td3 .tc5 6 lt'lb3 i.. e7
White a strong attack in Ramesh-Emms, The main alternative to 6 ...a7. Black
British Ch. 2002. prefers to keep his bishop as a defensive
1 1 .tg5 'ili'c7 1 2 'ili'd2?! piece on the kingside.
A mistake. Shirov suggests 12 f4! h4 1 3 7 0-0 d6 8 c4 b6 9 lt'lc3 ..tb7 1 0 f4 lt'ld7
'iff3 with an edge t o White. Although Kan players tend to prefer sys
1 2 . . . ..td7 1 3 ad 1 lt'le5 14 .te2 .tc6? tems with ... l2Jd7, Black can also develop
Black misses a great chance for counter with ... l2Jc6, for example 10 ... l2Jc6 1 1 e3
play: 14 ...l2Jfg4! 1 5 h4 f6! 16 'ifxd6 'ifxd6 l2Jf6 12 'iff3 l2Jd7 1 3 ad1 'ifc7 14 'ifh3
1 7 xd6 gS 1 8 g3 h4 1 9 xeS ltJxeS (Shi ltJcS 1 5 ltJxcS bxcS 1 6 fS with an edge to
rov) and Black's control of the dark squares White, Rytshagov-Agrest, Stockholm 1 998.
and well-placed pieces provide enough Significantly, perhaps, Agrest has since
compensation for the pawn deficit. switched to 10 ... l2Jd7.
1 5 f3! 1 1 .te3
Preventing any ...l2Jg4 tricks and securing With this move White auns for 'third
a clear plus. rank' set-up, which will be completed with
1 5 . . . 0-0-0 'iff3. For the main alternative 1 1 'ife2, see
Game 38.
1 1 . . .lt'lgf6 1 2 'ili'f3

Given that White was threatening the d6-


pawn, this looks natural. However, now

1 00
5 d3 c 5

From here the queen has options to go 1 3 l:!.ad 1 'i!i'c7 1 4 'ili'h3 h5!?
to both g3 and h3. On g3 it attacks the g7- Again we see this move. Black doesn't
pawn while on h3, combined with f4-f5, it want to commit his king and plays actively
helps to pressurise the e6-pawn. White will on the kingside. 14 ... 0-0 1 5 fS! is pleasant
also seriously consider the space-gaining g2- for White.
g4-g5, especially since Black's f6-knight 1 5 f5 gxf5!
doesn't have its natural retreat square at d7. A big point of 12 ... g6.
We have reached an important moment; 1 6 exf5 e5
Black now needs to make a difficult deci- Black has blocked the centre and now
SIOn. seeks counterplay down the g-file and along
1 2 . . . g6! ? the long h 1 -a8 diagonal.
By no means the only choice. Black can 1 7 e2!
also play: White prepares to oppose Black's power
a) 12 ... h5!? (Agrest likes to play this move ful bishop.
- see also Game 38) 1 3 .l:tad1 "fic7 14 h3 g6 1 7 . . .l:!.g8 18 f3
(Agrest assesses the position after 1 4... h4 1 5
'i'f2 ltJcS 1 6 ltJxcS dxcS 1 7 e S ltJd7 1 8 fS as
good for White, but I think it's quite play
able for Black after 18 ...0-0-0) 1 5 "fi f2 ltJcS
16 ltJxcS dxcS 1 7 eS ltJd7 18 ..ie4 0-0-0 was
agreed drawn in Rytshagov-Agrest, Istanbul
Olympiad 2000. After the bishops are ex
changed Black can aim for counterplay with
...ltJb8-c6. Nevertheless, I still prefer White
and, given that he chose not to repeat this
against Shirov, perhaps Agrest agrees.
b) 1 2...ltJc5 1 3 ltJxcS bxcS 1 4 "fih3 ltJd7
15 eS! ( 1 5 f5 ltJeS 16 ..ic2 0-0 17 fxe6 ..ic8!
[Ribli] is fine for Black as 18 ex7+? .l::t x7 1 8 . . . xf3?
19 "fig3 ..ih4! traps the white queen) Giving up the fight too easily. After this
1 5 ... dxe5 1 6 f5 1 6 ...ltJf6 1 7 .l:tad 1 "fib6 1 8 move White manages to obtain crucial light
fxe6 "fixe6 1 9 ..ifS gave White reasonable square domination in the centre. Instead
compensation for the pawn, Shirov Black should aim for the complications of
Kveinys, Istanbul Olympiad 2000. 1 8 ... e4 1 9 ..ie2 ltJeS 20 ltJd2, which Shirov
c) 1 2... 0-0 1 3 .l:tad1 .l:te8 14 "fih3 "fic8!? assesses as unclear. Now 20 ... 0-0-0?! 21
(covering the e6-square although 14 ... "fic7 liJdS! is good for White, so I prefer
15 g4! g6 1 6 gS ltJhS 17 f5 exfS 1 8 exfS 20 ... ltJeg4! with ideas of ... d6-d5 and
ltJeS doesn't look bad for Black) 1 5 g4 g6 ... ltJxe3.
1 6 gS ltJhS 1 7 flo ..i8 1 8 "fif2 "fic7 1 9 1 9 'ili'xf3 .l:!.b8 20 tt'ld2! b5 21 cxb5 axb5
..ie2 ltJg7 20 ltJd4 ltJcS 21 ..if3 eS! 22 22 tt'lde4 b4 23 tt'ld5 tt'lxd5 24 l:!.xd5
ltJde2 .l:tab8 (22 ... exf4?! 23 ltJxf4 ltJxe4? 24 tt'lf6 25 :lc 1 'ili'b7 26 tt'lxf6 + xf6 27
ltJxe4 ..ixe4 loses to 25 ltJdS) 23 fS and l:!.cd1 h4 28 f2 'it>f8 29 'ili'h3 :ld8 30
now, instead of 23 ... a5 24 ..ig2 which was c5 :lg5 31 e3 l:!.g8 32 c5 :lg5 33
good for White in Vallejo Pons-Korneev, 'i!i'd3! :d7 34 f2 l:!.g8 35 h3! 'i!i'c6?
Elgoibar 1 997, I prefer 23 ... gxf5 24 exfS e4! Dropping a pawn, although by now
followed by ...ltJd3. Black's position is extremely difficult.

101
Sicilian Kan

1 2 . . . h5!?
The most ambitious of Black's options,
though not necessarily the best. Black gives
the knight a square on g4 and can also con
sider ... h5-h4 and ... lLlh5.
Black's alternatives include:
a) 12 ... g6?! 13 e5! is strong, as 1 3 ... dxe5
14 fxe5 lLlxe5? fails to 1 5 'i'xe5 'i'xd3 1 6
.l:.xf6.
b) 1 2... 0-0 1 3 .l:.ae1 and now:
b1) 13 ....l:.e8!? 14 .l:.f3 .tfB 1 5 .l:.h3 e5 1 6
f5 b5!? (thematic but. . .) 1 7 cxb5 axb5 1 8
.txb5 d5 1 9 exd5 lLlxd5 20 a4 doesn't give
36 e4 .:.c7 37 xb4 i.e7 38 i.xh4 f6 Black enough for the pawn.
39 .:.1 d2 c1 + 40 <t>h2 .:.c4 41 b8 + b2) 1 3 ... .l:.c8 1 4 .l:.f3! (but not 14 e5? dxe5
<t>f7 42 b3 f1 43 .:.t2 c1 44 .:.d1 1 5 fxe5 lLlxe5!) 1 4... .l:.e8 1 5 l:h3 lLlfB 1 6 e5
1 -0 ltJ6d7 17 'i'h5 g6 18 'i'h6 was better for
White in Kutuzovic-Gallagher, Pula 2000.
Game 38 c) 12 ...'i'c7 (this looks the safest way) 1 3
Moberg-Agrest .l:.ae1
Swedish Team Championship 200 1

1 e4 c5 2 lt'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt'lxd4 a6


5 i.d3 i.c5 6 lt'lb3 i.e7 7 0-0 d6 8 c4
b6 9 lt'lc3 i.b7 1 0 f4 lt'ld7 1 1 e2
As we have seen before, the plan involv
ing 'i'e2, .td2 and .l:.ae1 is one of the most
dangerous available to White. These posi
tions should be compared to the ones
where the white knight is on d4. The knight
is obviously less active on b3, but it is also
less vulnerable to counter-attack.
1 1 . . .lt'lgf6 1 2 i.d2
with a further split:
cl) 1 3 ...0-0 14 e5! looks better for White.
c2) 1 3 ... h5!? 1 4 lLld4! (White needs to get
this knight back into the action) 1 4 ... g6
( 1 4... 'i'c5?! can be simply met by 1 5 lLla4!)
1 5 lLlf3 and now Black's kingside looks a bit
shaky after 1 5 ... 0-0?! 1 6 f5. I believe that
Black should play a waiting game with
1 5 ... .l:.d8, although the question remains
about the final destination of Black's king.
c3) 1 3 ...g6? 14 e5! dxe5 1 5 fxe5 lLlh5 1 6
ltJd5!! exd5 1 7 e6 fxe6 1 8 'i'xe6 ltJdf6 1 9
b4 lLlg8 20 xe7 lLlxe7 21 .l:.f? was win-

1 02
5 i. d3 .i. c 5

ning for White in Langheinrich-Glek, Bad


Zwesten 1 999. This game ill u strates how
careful Black has to be against White's 'ii'e2,
.id2, .nae1 plan.
c4) 1 3 ... e5 (this is certainly more playable
here than if the white knight was on d4, but
it still makes a rather strange impression) 1 4
ltJdS (14 fS should b e enough for a n edge)
14 ...'ii'd 8 1 5 i.c3 (or 1 5 fS 0-0 and Black
can aim for ... b6-b5!) 1 5 ...0-0 1 6 lbd2 exf4
1 7 nxf4 lbes 1 8 ltJ3 l2Jfd7 1 9 b3 g6 and
Black was doing okay in Dunis-Kveinys,
Bogny sur Meuse 2002.
cS) 13 ... nd8 (this should certainly be With some ideas of ...ltJhS, castling
compared to note 'b' to Black's 9th move in queenside and, in an ideal world, even a
Game 1 2, where White's knight is on d4) 1 4 possible ...lbg3 + . White's king can actually
no!? ( 1 4 ltJdS? exdS 1 5 exdS 0-0! and there be misplaced on h 1 !
is no lbfS here; 1 4 i.c2!? is also playable) 1 6lDd5?
14 ...g6 (14... 0-0 1 5 nh3 g6 1 6 eS dxeS 1 7 This sacrifice simply doesn't work. 16 fS?
fxeS l2Je8 1 8 Wh 1 ltJg7 1 9 i.f4 ltJcS 20 gxfS 1 7 exfS h3! and 1 6 eS? h3! show the
lbxcS bxcS 21 i.e4, Dobrowolski potential in Black's set-up. Best is 1 6 b4!,
Ostrowski, Krynica 1 997 and 1 4... l2Jc5 1 5 preventing anything coming to cS and pre
lbxcS dxcS 1 6 nh3 l2Jd7 1 7 eS, Westerinen paring a pawn assault should Black dare to
Zagorskis, Yerevan 1 996 were both better castle queenside.
for White) 1 5 lbdS!? (obviously this is not 1 6 . . . exd5 1 7 exd5 lDc5 1 8 i.c2 h3! 1 9
forced) 1 5 ... exd5 16 exdS 0-0! (16 ... lbc5 1 7 b4 lDxd5 20 cxd5 ..ltxd5 2 1 lDf3 hxg2 +
lbxcS 'ii'x cS+ 1 8 i.e3 'ii'c 7 1 9 i.d4 W 8 20 22 'it>xg2lDe6
fS! gS 21 'ii'd2 .ng8 22 l:.xe7! 'ifxe7 23 .ne3
and White is winning) 17 ne3 ltJxdS 1 8
cxdS i.f6 and Black was doing more than
okay in J urkovic-Sax, Bizovac 2002.
1 3lDd4
Bringing the knight back into play. 1 3
eS?! dxeS 1 4 fxeS lbxeS! exploits the unde
fended bishop on d3.
1 3 . . .'ii'c7 1 4 'iti>h 1
I prefer 1 4 lb3!, which looks a good
manoeuvre against ... h7-h5 - sometimes the
knight can utilise the gS-square. Palac
Fercec, Zadar 1 999 continued 1 4... h4?!
(14... g6!? looks stronger) 1 5 b4 h3 1 6 g3 Black is a clear pawn up and it's White's
lbg4 1 7 lbd4 lbdf6 1 8 lbb3 0-0 1 9 l:tacl king that is more exposed. This adds up to a
l:.ac8 20 bS aS 21 lba4 and Black's slightly decisive advantage for Black.
awkward knights on f6 and g4 gave White 23 i.e4 'ii' b7 24 i.xd5 'ii' x d5 25 'ii' e4
an edge. 'ii' xe4 26 lbe4 .l:l.c8 27 :c 1 :xc1 28
1 4 . . . g6 1 5 :ae1 h4! i.xc 1 'it>d7 29 .l:l.c4 b5 30 :c2 i.f6 3 1

1 03
Sicilian Kan

g3 ll'lg7 32 lld2 .llc 8 33 i.b2 .ixb2 34 7 ...i.f6!? looks slightly better against the
.llx b2 .llc4 35 .lld 2 ll'lh5 + 36 f2 .llxb4 immediate 7 'ii'g4 when compared to the
37 f5 gxf5 38 e3 .lle4 + 39 f2 ll'lf6 note above. 8 0-0 tLlc6 9 f4 d6 and now:
40 g3 l:tg4 + 41 h3 ll'le4 42 .llc 2 f6 a) 1 0 tLlc3 hS 1 1 'i*'f3 tt:Jge7 12 i.e3 'ii'c7
43 a4 ll'lg5 + 44 ll'lxg5 fxg5 45 axb5 1 3 nad1 nbB! (1 3. .. bS? and 1 3 . .. tLlb4?! are
.llh4 + 46 g3 axb5 0-1 both answered by 1 4 eS!) 14 a4 b6 1 S nd2
,...-----. (Am.Rodriguez-Vehi Bach, Manresa 1 997)
Game39 and now Rodriguez's suggestion of
lutz-Milov 1 S ... i.xc3 1 6 bxc3 i.b7 doesn't look bad
European Team Ch., Leon 200 1 for Black.
b) 10 tiJ 1 d2!? tt:Jge7 1 1 'i1i>h1 tt:Jg6 1 2 a4
1 e4 c5 2 ll'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ll'lxd4 a6 b6 1 3 tLlc4 0-0 14 i.e3 nbB 1 S .U.ad1 bS
5 .id3 .ic5 6 ll'lb3 .ie7 7 'ii' g4 (1S ... dS 1 6 eS i.e7 17 tLlcd2 tLlb4 18 nf3
Perhaps slightly more accurate for White was better for White in Van Hassterd
is the move order 7 0-0 d6 8 'i*'g4 and now: Spassov, Badalona 1997) 1 6 axbS axbS 17
a) 8...g6 9 'i*'e2, transposes to Game 40. tLla3 (17 tt:Jxd6? 'ifxd6 1 8 eS tLlcxeS 1 9 fxeS
b) 8... tLlf6 9 'i*'xg7 ngB 1 0 'ii'h 6 looks 'ifxeS leaves White a pawn down)
better for White here than the similar varia 1 7 ... i.xb2 1 8 tLlxbS tLlb4 1 9 'i*'e2 and I
tion in the note to White's 1 0th move, as prefer White.
Black has expended a tempo on the not-so- 8 'ii' x g7 l:.g8 9 'ii' h 6 ll'lc6
useful ... d7 -d6. 9 ... .U.xg2? 10 eS! is strong, as 10 ... tt:Jg4?
c) 8 ... i. f6 9 'i*'g3! tLlc6 10 tLl1 d2! (target- loses to 1 1 'i*'h3.
ing d6; tiJ1 d2-c4 looks like a good way of 1 0 ll'lc3!?
exploiting ... .if6) 10 ... tt:Jge7 (10 ... bS?! 1 1 a4 Recently white players have been es
.U.b8 1 2 axbS axbS 1 3 f4 eS 1 4 tt:Jf3 lUge7 1 S chewing the chance to keep the extra pawn
fxeS dxeS 1 6 i.e3 gave White the advantage with 1 0 0-0. One older example is 1 0...tLleS
in Rytshagov-Vehi Bach, Groningen 1 997) 1 1 tLlc3 bS 12 f3 b4 1 3 tLld1 dS 1 4 'i*'e3
1 1 tLlc4 lUeS 1 2 lUxeS dxeS (12 ... i.xeS?? i.b7 1 S tt:Jf2 and Black has reasonable
loses a piece to 13 f4 .if6 14 eS) 1 3 i.e3 compensation in Psakhis-Kurajica, Cap
(Rytshagov) with a comfortable structural d'Agde 1 994.
edge for White. 1 0 . . Jbg2

7 . . . ll'lf6 1 1 'ii' h 3
For 7 ...g6, see Game 40. An important alternative is 1 1 i.d2 and

1 04
5 i.. d 3 i.. c 5

now: White avoids the trap 1 4 ..if5? d4! 1 5


a) 1 1 ....:lxf2 1 2 'iVh3 .:lxd2 1 3 lL\xd2 ..ixc8 (1 5 lL\e2?? 'iVd5!) 1 5...'ii'xc8 1 6
doesn't give Black enough compensation 'iVxc8+ .U.xc8 1 7 lL\e2 lL\b4, when Black is
for the exchange. doing very well.
b) In my opinion, the sequence 1 1 ...d6 1 2 1 4 . . . i.e6 1 5 0-0-0 c7 1 6 tt:le2 0-0-0
0-0-0 .:lx2! (12....:lg6 1 3 'ii'e3 lL\g4 1 4 'iVe2 1 7 ttJed4 ttJxd4 1 8 ttJxd4
lL\ge5 1 5 f4 lL\xd3+ 1 6 'iVxd3 b5 1 7 f5 was
very unpleasant for Black in Hernandez
Kurajica, Las Palrnas 1 995) 1 3 l:thg1 lL\e5
14 e2 f8 1 5 'iVh4 has been unfairly con
demned as Black has the vital resource
15 ... l:txe2! 16 lL\xe2 lL\f3 17 'iVf4 lL\xg1 1 8
l:txg1 ..id7 after which White i s struggling
to show anything for the pawn.
1 1 . . ..l:!.g8
Kurajica's latest word on this line is
1 1 ....:lg4!? although 12 f4 e5 1 3 lL\d5 1l2-1l2
Milu-Kurajica, Pula 2001 was hardly a test!
1 2 i.d2
12 ..ie3!? looks more aggressive: 1 8 ... i.c5 !
a) 1 2 ... d5 13 exd5 with a further split: Giving up the bishop pau In order to
a 1) 1 3 ... lL\b4 14 0-0-0 lL\xd3+ 1 5 l:txd3 strengthen the pawn structure. I believe that
exd5 (15 ...e5 16 'iVfl ..if5 1 7 l:td1) 16 1Vf3 Black has equalised here .
..ig4 17 'iVf4 l:tc8 18 l:te 1 was obviously 1 9 tt:lxe6 fxe6 20 f3 'it>b8 2 1 h3 e5 22
good for White in Van der Wiel-Kurajica, .!:!.he 1 .l:!.de8 23 h4 b6 24 h6 e4 25
European Team Ch., Pula 1 997. fxe4 dxe4 26 i.f4 + 'it>a7 27 i.c4 .l:!.g2
a2) 13 ...exd5!? 14 ..tf5 (14 'iVfl ? d4!) 28 l:te2 .l:.xe2 29 i.xe2 e3 30 c3 .l:.e6 3 1
14 ... ..ib4 1 5 0-0-0 ..ixc3 1 6 bxc3 lL\e7 17 g5 h 6 3 2 f5 tt:le4 3 3 .l:!.d3 lLld2 34
..ixc8 'iVxc8 1 8 'ii'h4! and Black's dark .l:.d7 .l:!.e4?
squares look vulnerable. Allowing a stunning combination.
b) Van der Wiel suggests 12 ... d6 is just 35 .l:!.xb7 + ! 'it>xb7?
slightly better for White. I put forward 1 3 35 ...1Vxb7 36 'iVxc5+ is good for White
0-0-0 e 5 1 4 'ii'fl ..ie6 1 5 ..ic4 to back up but Black is obviously still in the game.
this view. 36 d7 + 'it>a8 37 c8 + 'it>a7 38
1 2 . . . d5 1 3 exd5 i.b8 + !! 1 -0
13 0-0-0?! d4 14 lL\e2 e5, as in
Ara.Minasian-Milov, Batumi 2002, is not a Game 40
real test of Black's opening. This does Torres-Smirin
prove, though, that Milov was prepared to New York 1998
give this line another go after his game with
Lutz. 1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ttJxd4 a6
1 3 . . . exd5 5 i.d3 i.c5 6 tt:lb3 i.e7 7 g4 g6
After 13 ... lL\b4?! 14 0-0-0 lL\xd3+ 1 5 The most common reaction. The ques
'iVxd3 exd5 1 6 l:thg1 Black's lack o f devel tion is whether the 'extra' move ... g7 -g6 will
opment is starting to show. be a strength or a weakness.
1 4 f 1 8 e2

105
Sicilia n Kan

The queen has done its 'job' of provok C. Hansen-Akesson, Reykjavik 1 998.
ing ... g7-g6 and now returns to a more fa b) 12 ... b6 with a further split:
miliar square. White can also wait a bit be b 1) 1 2 i.e3 ..i.b7 13 .:.acl l"Llgf6 (Black
fore doing this, for example, 8 0-0 d6 9l"Llc3 could delay this knight move with
and now: 1 3 . .. .:.c8!?) 14 ..i.h6 l"Lle5 1 5 h3 l"Llfd7
a) 9 ...l"Llf6?! is too rushed: 10 'ii'e 2l"Llbd7 (15 ... .:.g8!?) 1 6 l"Lld2 g5 1 7 f4 gxf4 1 8 ..i.xf4
1 1 ..i.h6! and it's White who has benefited h5 1 9 l"Llf3 h4 20 'it>h 1 i.f6 21 ..i.b 1 'it>e7
from the ... g7-g6 advance. The rule of with an unclear position in Agopov
thumb is that Black should wait for White Kveinys, Jyvaskyla 2001 .
to play 2-f4 before he plays ...l"Llf6. b2) 1 2 f4 and now:
b) 9 ...l"Lld7! and now White should trans
pose to the text with 10 'ii'e 2 as after 10 f4
l"Llgf6 1 1 'ii'e2 White no longer has the op
tion of ..i.h6.
8 . d6 9 0-0
. .

White normally castles kingside quite


early on. One exception was 9 l"Llc3 l"Lld7 1 0
f4 "ilic7 1 1 ..i.d2l"Llgf6 1 2 g4 b 5 1 3 a 3 ..i.b7
14 g5 l"Llh5 15 :n l"Llc5 16 l"Llxc5 dxc5 and
Black had no problems in Gofshtein-Glek,
Senden 1 997.
9 . . .lLld7
Black keeps developing in typical Kan
fashion. Notice, though, that 9 ...l"Llf6?! is b21) 1 2... i.b7 (this allows White a quick
still answered by 10 ..i.h6!. assault on the e6-pawn) 13 f5! l"Llgf6 (or
1 3. ..l"Lle5 1 4 fxe6 fxe6 1 5l"Lld4!) 1 4 fxe6 fxe6
15 l"Lld4 'ii'c 5 16 ..i.e3 "ilie5 17 l"Llf3 'ii'h 5 1 8
h 3 with some advantage to White, Holzke
Kveinys, Wattenschied 2000
b22) 12 ...l"Llgf6! (I think this is more ac
curate):

b221) 1 3 i.d2 ..i.b7 14 f5 (or 1 4 .:.ael h5!


and now the extra tempo for ...g7-g6 looks
useful) 14 ...l"Llc5 1 5 fxe6 fxe6 1 6l"Lld4 'ii'd7
and the strong knight on e5 once again
holds together Black's position.
b222) 1 3 f5!? looks critical: 1 3 ...l"Lle5 1 4
i.h6l"Llfg4 ( 1 4...l"Llcg4 1 5 i.g7 .:.g8 1 6 ..i.xf6
An important juncture. White has to de l"Llxf6 1 7 fxe6 fxe6 1 8 e5! dxe5 1 9 l"Lle4 and
cide whether to play c2-c4 or not. 14 ... .:.g8 1 5 fxe6 fxe6 1 6 ..i.g5 are both good
1 0 lLlc3 for White) 1 5 ..i.g7 ng8 and now:
The main alternative is 10 c4 'ii'c7 1 1 b2221) 16 ..i.xe5l"Llxe5 17 f6 ..i.f8 with a
l"Llc3 and now: bizarre position which I think is fine for
a) 1 1 ...l"Ll e5 12 f4l"Llxd3 1 3 'ii'x d3l"Llf6 1 4 Black. He has a monster of a knight on e5,
l"Lld4 ..i.d7 1 5 b 3 l:%.c8 1 6 ..i.b2 0-0 1 7 'it>h 1 useful dark-squared control, can possibly
.:.fd8 1 8 .I:.ael gave White an edge in castle quecnside and can push the g-pawn

106
5 i. d3 i. c 5

up the board! 'ii'f2 i.xe4 1 8 i.xe4 .U.ad8 was equal in Bo


b2222) 1 6 f6 and now Black can choose risek-Korneev, Nova Gorica 2002. I prefer
between the incredible 1 6 ...lt:lxh2!? 17 xh2 17 lt:lxd6! 'ii'x d6 18 .U.d 1 , which looks a bit
dS 18 h1 (18 cxdS lt:lf3+ 1 9 h3 'ii'h2+ better for White.
20 g4 eS+ 21 xf3 'ii'f4 is a nice mate) 1 5 lLlxd5 i.xd5 1 6 exd6
1 8 ... dxc4 1 9 i.xc4 'ii'xc4 20 it'e3 i.b4 or 1 6 i.xa6 0-0 gives Black good counter
the simple 1 6 ... i.b7, with both positions play, while 16 ... 'ii'xc2 is also not bad.
looking very murky. 16 i.c3 dxeS 17 i.xa6? 0-0 1 8 fxeS
1 o.. 'ii'c7 1 1 i.d2
. .U.xa6! 19 'ii'xa6 i.c4 20 'ii'a4 bS 21 'tWaS
White can also play 1 1 a4 but in view of 'ii'c 6 22 i.d2 b4 left White struggling to
the next note this seems an unnecessary find squares for his queen in Wahls-Smirin,
precaution. Dresden 1 998.
1 1 ...b6 1 6 . . .i.xd6 1 7 c4 i.b7 18 i.c3 0-0
11 ... bS?! is premarure as it allows White
to strike on the queenside with 1 2 a4 b4 1 3
lt:la2 aS 1 4 c 3 bxc3 1 S lt:lxc3 followed by
lL\bS. But when ... b7-bS is too risky, Black
can often rely on a more 'restrained' fi
anchetto with ...b7-b6.
1 2 l:tae1 i.b7

Black has no problems at all in this posi


tion. He is fully developed and has no
weaknesses. In fact, one could already speak
of a slight edge due to White's typically
'weak' king (a constant problem for White
after f2-f4 in the Sicilian!).
1 9 'ii'g4 lLlc5 20 lLlxc5 i.xc5 + 21 '1t>h 1
1 3 f4 l:tadB 22 l:.d 1 l:.d7 23 'ii'h 3 l:tfdB 24
Finally White succumbs to this narural i.xg6
move. He could wait one further move with This tactic fails to some ingenious de
1 3 h1 !? and now 1 3 ...lL\eS 1 4 f4lt:lxd3 1 5 fence. 24 i.f6 i.e7 25 i.xe7 .U.xe7 leaves
cxd3 lLlf6 1 6 fS looks promising for White; Black with a slight edge.
as does 1 3 ... bS!? 14 a4 bxa4 1 S lLlxa4lt:lgf6 24 . . . i.xg2 + !
16 lLlaS. After 1 3 ...lt:lf6 1 4 i.h6 play may 24... fxg6? fails to 2S 'ii'x e6+ .U.f7 26
continue 14 ... lL\eS 1 S f4 (1 S h3!?) 1 5 ...lt:leg4 'ii'e 5!.
16 i.g7 .U.g8 1 7 i.xf6lt:lxf6 1 8 eS ltJhS and 25 'ii'x g2
I would probably just about side with White Black is also better after 25 xg2 'ii'c 6+
here. 26 l:.f3 fxg6!.
1 3 . . . lLlgf6 1 4 e5 lLld5! 25 ... hxg6 26 .ie5
1 4...lLlhS 1S exd6 i.xd6 1 6 lt:le4 0-0 17 Or 26 'ii'h 3!? 'ii'c 6+ 27 .U.d5 eS!! (a bril-

10 7
Sicilian Ka n

liant defence) 28 .ixe5 f6 and Black will


wind up with the better pawn structure.
26 . . . d6 27 .l:[xd6 .l:[xd6 28 h3 <li>fB
29 'i'hB + <li'e7 30 'i'f6 + 'iteB 3 1
'i'hB + ?
White has to take the rook: 3 1 xd6
.U.xd6 32 'ifh8+ 'ite7 33 'ifh4+ 'itd7 34 'iff6
'itc8 although even here Black has good
winning chances.
3 1 . . .<li'd7 32 'i'f6 'i'c6 + 33 'itg 1 .l:[d2
34 'i'xf7 + WeB 35 'i'xg6 .l:[d1 36 .l:[xd 1
.l:[xd 1 + 37 <li>f2 'i'xc4 0-1

Game 4 1 6 . . . 4Jc6
Golubev-Moroz The most ambitious, but perhaps not the
Donetsk 1998 best move. 6 ... d6 looks perfectly safe for
._____________....,. Black: 7 'ife2 lbd7 8 0-0 lbgf6 9 a4 a7 1 0
1 e4 c 5 2 4Jf3 e 6 3 d4 cxd4 4 4Jxd4 a6 c2 lbf8!? 1 1 lbd2 'ifc7 1 2 lbc4 lbg6 1 3
5 d3 c5 6 c3 g5 0-0 1 4 xf6 gxf6 1 5 lbe3 'ifc5 was
As well as this move, White can play 6 unclear in Wedberg-Agrest, Skelleftea 1 999.
e3!? and now: 7 e3
a) 6 ...'ifb6!? (Black goes 'pawn happy'!) 7 7 lbxc6 is also possible, but less critical:
c3 'ifxb2 (7 ... lbc6 transposes to 6 c3 lbc6 7 7 ... dxc6 8 e5 (8 0-0 e5, as in Klovans
i.e3 'ifb6) with a further split: Chuchelov, Germany 1 997, is dead equal)
a1) 8 0-0 is promising as 8 ... 'ifxa1 9 'ifc2! 8 ...lbe7 9 'ife2 lbg6 10 f4 0-0 1 1 e3 i.xe3
nets the queen, while 8 ... 'ifb6 9 lbd2 'ifc7 12 'ifxe3 lbxf4 1 3 xh7+ 'itxh7 14 'ifxf4
1 0 'ifg4 f8 1 1 e5 gave White a strong ini f6 was agreed drawn in Mainka-Bischoff,
tiative in Buenafe Moya-Munoz Agullo, Bad Worishofen 1 997, although there is
Mislata 1 994. obviously still much to play for. Also of
a2) 8 lbd2 'ifxc3? (8 ... lbc6, transposing interest is 8 ... 'iWd5!?, hitting e5 and g2. I
to the text, looks best) 9 .U.c l ! 'ifxd3 1 0 think best play is 9 'ife2! 'ifxg2 10 e4
.U.xc5 lbc6 (C.Balogh-Szeberenyi, Budapest 'ifh3 1 1 'ifc4 f5!, which is very unclear.
1 997) and now 1 1 'ifc1 !! is winning. White 7 . . .'ii' b 6?!
threatens to trap the queen with .U.c3, while
1 1 ...lbxd4 12 .U.xc8+ .U.xc8 1 3 'ifxc8+ 'ite7
14 'ifc5+ picks up the knight.
b) 6 ... d6! looks much more sensible: 7
0-0 (7 'iWg4?! lbf6 8 'ifxg7 .U.g8 9 'ifh6 e5!
looks good for Black) 7 ... lbe7 8 'ife2 lbd7 9
lbc3 b5 10 lbb3 i.b6!? 1 1 .U.ad 1 0-0 1 2
'ith1 e 5 1 3 f4 i.xe3 1 4 'ifxe3 b7 and
Black has equalised, Noskov-Tunik, Cheli
abinsk 1 9 9 1 .
6 lbf3 doesn't carry any punch: 6 ...d 6 7
0-0 lbf6 8 c4 0-0 9 lbc3 lbbd7 1 0 lba4 a7
was equal in Cao-Votava, Budapest 1995.

108
5 i.. d3 i.. c 5

Black goes 'all in'. There is no turning more punishment with 1 0...'ili'xd3? 1 1 lL'le5
back after this move. 'ili'd6 12 lL'lec4 'ili'c7 13 i..x cS 'ili'xc5 14 e5!
The last chance to bail out is with cj;f8 15 l:.ct 'W'd4 16 lL'ld6 lL'le7 17 'ili'h5 g6
7 ... i..a 7 (taking measures against the threat 1 8 'ili'h6+ <t;g8 1 9 lLlf3 1 -0 Rechel-Moroz,
of lL'lxc6) 8 lL'ld2 lL'lf6 9 0-0 0-0 1 0 lL'l2f3 Pardubice 2000.
10 ...lL'lg4 (10 ... d6 1 1 lL'lxc6 bxc6 12 i..xa7 1 1 fxeJ
.U.xa7 1 3 eS [Kurajica] 1 3 ... dxe5 14 lL'lxeS
gives White a comfortable edge due to the
weakness of Black's queenside pawns) 1 1
i.gS (Kurajica-Gerusel, Wijk aan Zee 1 973)
and now Kurajica's suggestion of 1 1 .. .'fic7
looks okay for Black.
8 lLld2!
White can only hope for an advantage by
offering the sacrifice. 8 'ili'b3 'ili'xb3 9 axb3
i.xd4 1 0 cxd4lL'lb4! equalises comfortably.
8 . . .'ii'xb2
8 ...lL'lxd4? 9 lLlc4! 'ili'a7 10 cxd4 i..xd4 1 1
eS! is horrible for Black, for example
1 t ...i..xe3 1 2 fxe3 d5 (or 12 ...lL'lh6 1 3lL'ld6+ 1 1 . . . dxc6
<t;e7 14 'ili'f3 l:tf8 15 'ili'g3 'ili'c5 16 0-0lL'lg4 1 1 ...'ili'xc6? loses simply to 12 l;lct 'ili'd6
1 7 'ili'h4+ f6 1 8 'ili'xg4 'ili'xe3+ 1 9 <t;h 1 1 -0 13 lL'lc4 'ili'c5 14 e5 and the knight corning
L. Milov-Osterwald, Dieren 1 997) 1 3lL'ld6+ to d6 will be terminal for Black.
<t;e7 14 0-0 'ili'xe3+ 1 5 <t;h1 lL'lh6 16 'W'c2 1 t ...'ili'xd3 led to another miniature in the
..i.d7 17 .U.ae1 'ili'd4 18 'ili'd2 'W'h4 19 l:.f4 game Orso-Valenti, Budapest 2000: 1 2lL'le5
'ili'h5 20 'ili'b4 <t;d8 21 l:.h4 and Black re 'ili'xe3+ 13 <t;h1 1 3...lL'lf6 1 4lL'ldc4 'ili'c5 1 5
signed in Luther-Krallmann, Bad Wiessee lL'ld6+ (Ribli stopped his analysis here, as
1 998 on account of 21 ...'ili'g5 22 l:.xh6!. sessing the position as clearly better for
9 0-0 'ii'x cJ White) 1 5 ... <t;e7 1 6 lL'lexf7 l;lf8 1 7 e5 l;lxf7
9 ... 'ili'b6? is worse: 10 lL'lc4 'ili'a7 (Blas 1 8lL'lxf7 cj;xf7 19 exf6 gxf6 20 l;lct 'ili'b6 21
kowski-Capelan, Germany 1 978) and now I l:.xc8 1 -0.
like 1 1 lL'lxc6 dxc6 1 2lL'ld6+! <t;e7 1 3lL'lxf7! Golubev suggests 1 1 ...bxc6 as an im
<t;xf7 14 'ili'h5+ g6 1 5 'ili'e5!. provement, but I find it difficult to believe
Also bad is 9 ...lL'lxd4? 10 cxd4 i..xd4 1 1 in Black's defences: 1 2lL'lc4 and now:
l:.b1 'ili'c3 1 2 lL'lc4 and Black, whilst being a) 12 ...lL'lh6 13 l;lb1 (threatening l:.b3)
threatened with l:.b3, is also getting killed 1 3. ..d5 (or 1 3. .. g6 14 e5!) 14 l;lb3 'ili'xb3 1 5
on the dark squares. It's no relief to ex lL'ld6+ <t;d7 1 6 'ili'xb3 <t;xd6 1 7 'ili'c3 must
change on e3 as this just simply opens an be winning for White.
other avenue of attack for White. b) 12 ...'W'b4 13 'ili'g4 cj;8 14 l;lab1
1 0 lt:lxc6 i.. xeJ (Golubev's suggestion of 14 l:.xf7+!? cj;xf7
10 ... dxc6 1 1 lL'lc4! i..xe3 (1 t ...i..e 7? loses 15 l:.ft + lL'lf6 16 e5 also looks strong)
to 12 l:.ct !) 12 fxe3 transposes into the text, 1 4 ... 'W'e7 1 5 lL'lb6 l:tb8 1 6 lL'lxd7+! and
while 1 0 ... bxc6 1 1 lL'lc4! transposes into the White wins.
next note. 1 2 lt:lc4
Not satisfied with one battering in this Threatening to trap the queen with either
line, Moroz surprisingly later opted for l;lb 1 -b3 or a2-a3 and l:.c1 , whilst also pre-

109
Sicilian Kan

paring e4-e5 and l2Jd6+. In my opinion 1 7 . . . 'it>g7


White already has a winning attack. Or:
1 2 . . .'iVb4 1 3 e5 f5 1 4 tt:'ld6 + 'it>f8 1 5 a) 17 ...'i1Vc7 18 gxf5 exf5 1 9 xf5! gxf5
'iVh5 g6 1 6 'iVg5 'iVa5 1 7 g4! 20 l:txf5+ i.xf5 21 'i1Vxf5+ g7 22 'i\Vg5+
f8 23 .::1 ft + and White mates.
b) 17 ... 'i\Vxe5 18 'i1Vd8+ g7 19 c7+
h6 20 l2Jf7 +.
18 gxf5 exf5 19 .l:txf5! xf5 20 tt:'lxf5 +
'it>f8 21 tt:'ld6 'it>g7 22 .l:tf 1 'iVc7
22 ... l:tf8 loses after 23 l:txf8 xf8 24
f4+ e7 (or 24... g7 25 l2Je8 mate) 25
'i1Vf7+ d8 26 l2Jxb7+.
23 tt'lt5 + 'it>f8 24 tt:'ld4 + 1 -0
After 24... e8 White finishes off with 25
i.xg6+! hxg6 26 xg6+ d7 27 e6+
d8 28 l:tf8 mate.

1 10
5 i. d3 i. c 5

Summary
S...cS is still an underrated system, but gradually strong players are beginning to appreciate
its qualities. One of its advantages is that Black has quite a few different options after
S ... cS when compared to other lines.
I expect there to be more developments in the 'main line', with Black's improvements
outlined in Game 28 to some extent putting the ball back in White's court. 10 0-0 (Game
29) is harmless, but 9 0-0, with the idea of c2-c4, commands more respect. White isn't aim
ing for too much here and has reasonable chances of attaining more modest targets. The
line with 8 ... i.xe3 has gone out of fashion but, given some of the analysis in Game 33, per
haps unfairly so. I predict that we will see more of White's earlier alternatives. In particular,
Shirov's 8 0-0 lt::l c6 9 c4, bypassing the idea of i.e3 (as in Game 36), deserves further study.
6 ...e7 is also building up a reputation as a viable way for Black. Games 37-38 lead to
rich Hedgehog positions, which offer Black fair chances. Often White's knight being on b3
(rather than d4) works to Black's advantage. In my opinion, 7 'ii'g4 is the real test of 6 ... Ji.e7.
Game 40 works out well for Black, but I don't think we've seen the last of this line.

1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6 5 i.d3 i.c5 6 lLlb3


6 c3 - Game 4 1
6 . . .i.a7 (D)
6...e7
7 'ii'g4: 7 ... g6 - Game 40; 7 ... ltJf6 - Game 39
7 0-0 d6 8 c4 b6 9lt::lc3 i.b7 10 f4li::l d7: 1 1 e3 - Game 37; 1 1 'ii'e2 - Game 38
7 'ife2
7 0-0 lt::lc6
8 c4 - Game 36 8 'ii'g4: 8 .. .'i'f6 - Game 35; 8 ... liJf6 -Game 34
7 . . . lLlc6 8 i.e3 d6 (D)
8 ... xe3 - Game 33
9 lLlc3
9 0-0: 9 ... lt::lge7 - Game 32; 9 ... Ji.xe3 Game 3 1
9 . . lLlf6
.

9 ...ltJge7!? - Game 30
10 0-0-0
1 0 0-0 - Game 29
1 O . . . b5 1 1 xa7 J:!.xa7 1 2 f4 b4 1 3 lLla4 e5 1 4 f5 (D)- Game 28

6 . . . a7 B. . . d6 14 f5

111
CHAPTER FIVE I
5 ..td3: Fifth Move
Alternatives for Black

1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6 generate genuine winning chances.


In this chapter we will take a look at 5 ... 'i1Vb6, aiming to shift the knight away
some of Black's more unusual 5th move from the centre in a similar fashion to
alternatives after 5 .id3. There's quite a 5 ... .ic5, will be discussed in Game 48.
wide choice of playable moves for Black; as 5 ... lbe7 intends either ... lbbc6 or ...lbec6
well as 5.)ijf6 and 5 ....ic5, I mention as and, after an exchange on c6, to recaprure
many as nine (!) more here. If nothing else, with the other knight. This is the subject of
this is an illustration of the flexibility of the Game 49.
Kan. 5 ...d5!? is a relatively new move that no
1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6 one took seriously to start with, but in fact
5 i.d3 g6 it's not as bad as it looks and probably de
This is perhaps Black's most important serves to be allocated more than just a note
fifth move alternative. Black immediately (see Game 50).
fianchettoes his king's bishop before devel Before moving on, here's a round up of
oping anything else. In this line Black's other possible 5th moves for Black:
king's knight is likely to go to e7 so as not a) 5 ... 'i1Vc7 can simply transpose back into
to block the bishop. Also important is the main lines after 6 0-0 lbf6. Black can also
fact that Black has not touched his d-pawn. play 6....ic5 7 lbb3 i.e7. This then leads to
Sometimes Black can strike out in the cen lines discussed in Games 37-40 with the
tre with ... d7-d5. Black reasons that he can difference that Black has committed his
get away with temporarily leaving the d6- queen to c7 rather early. White can continue
square so vulnerable because White has with 7 c4, 7 lbc3 or 7 'i\Vg4.
cluttered up the d-ftle with 5 .id3. b) 5... d6 is likely to transpose to Chapter
5 ...lt:Jc6 is a very solid move championed 3 after 6 0-0 lbf6.
by the Latvian GM Normund Miezis, and is c) 5 ... b5?! looks a bit premarure when
discussed in Games 46-47. After the normal White has yet to commit himself to lbc3.
moves 6 lbxc6 dxc6 the strucrure is sym White can break with an early a2-a4 safe in
metrical and Black's position is very reso the knowledge that the response ...b5-b4
lute. The minus side (from Black's point of does not gain time. 6 0-0 .ib7 7 a4 b4 8
view) is that it can be is very difficult to lbd2 lbe7 9 f4 lbec6 10 lb4f3 d6 1 1 'i1Ve1

1 12
5 d3 : Fifth Mo ve A l terna tives for Bla ck

l2Jd7 12 'ti'g3 h5 13 b3 h4 14 'iih 3 lDc5 1 5 (see Game 44) .


.ib2 proved to be a good attacking set-up 7 . . . t"Lle7
in Wedberg-Dzindzichashvili, New York 7 ... d6 is possible but I think that Black
1991, although I'm sure there are other rea should be looking to keep his options open
sonable ways to play this for White. regarding the d-pawn. As well as this, White
d) Black can also accelerate the queenside can now put the d-pawn under early pres
fianchetto with 5 ... b6!? (a favourite of the sure: 8 lDc3 lDf6 9 .tf4! (9 0-0 transposes to
Hungarian GM Portisch) 6 0-0 .ib7 and note 'b' to White's 9th move in Game 24)
now: 9 ... 0-0 1 0 .ic2 c5 1 1 .ig5 h6 12 .tc3 h7
d1) 7 c4 .tc5 (for 7 ... d6 8 lDc3 lDf6 9 f4, 1 3 0-0 lDc6 14 l:tcl .ic6 1 5 .l:!.c2 'iie7 16
sec the note to Black's 7th move in Game .l:!.d2 and White had a pleasant position in
25) 8 lDb3 i.e7 9 lDc3 d6 would transpose Rowson-Bakhtadzc, Tallinn 1 997.
to Game 37, while Black could also consider B lLlcJ 0-0
9... lbc6. 8 ... d5 is probably prcmarure: 9 cxd5 exd5
d2) 7 lDc3 d6 8 f4 with a further split: 10 .tg5! h6 1 1 .txe7 .txc3+ 12 bxc3 'i'xe7
d21) 8 ... lDd7? 9 f5 e5 10 lDe6! fxe6 1 1 13 0-0 dxe4 14 .txe4 0-0 1 5 .l:!.e 1 left White
'i'h5+ g6 (1 1 ...e7 1 2 fxe6 g6 1 3 .ig5+ with the big development advantage in
lbdf6 14 'iif3 .tg7 1 5 lDd5+ .txd5 16 exd5 Donchcv-Prie, Toulon 1 988.
leaves Black a piece up but his chances of 9 0-0 t"Llbc6
surviving are slim) 12 fxg6 lDgf6 1 3 g7+
lDxh5 14 gxh8'ti' and White went on to win
in Fogarasi-Portisch, Hungary 1 994.
d22) 8 ... tt:Jf6 and now Fogarasi assesses
the line 9 g4 d5 10 e5 lDe4 1 1 'ti'f3 lbxc3 1 2
bxc3 ltJd7 1 3 .td2 i. e7 1 4 l:.ael a s clearly
better for White. One could also consider
moves such as 9 'i'e2 or 9 h 1 .
6 c4
6 lbc3 and 6 0-0 will be discussed in
Game 45.

This constirutcs the main line of 5 ... g6


and has been the battlefield of some super
GM clashes. White's main two moves arc
1 0 .tg5 (sec Game 42) and 1 0 .tc2 (see
Game 43).

Game 42
Anka-Nijboer
Dieren 1 998

1 e4 c5 2 lLlfJ e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 t"Llxd4 a6


6 . . . g7 7 t"Llb3 5 d3 g6 6 c4 .ig7 7 lLlbJ t"Lle7 8 lLlcJ
White can also choose to protect the 0-0 9 0-0 t"Llbc6 1 0 .ig5
knight with 7 .tc3 or retreat with 7 lDe2 Along with 1 0 .ic2 (sec Game 43), this is

1 13
Sicilian Kan

White's most popular choice. By pinning able compensation for the exchange.
the knight on e7, White prevents Black b3) 13 ... l:.e8 (the safest) 14 l:tet (1 4
from playing the freeing ... d7-d5 advance. 'ir'c2?! allows Black to develops with a gain
of time with 1 4... dxc4! 1 5 ..ixc4 ..ifS)
1 4... ..ie6 with equality.
1 1 . . . g5 1 2 ..tg3 lLle5
Now that Black has weakened his king
side, 12 ... d5?! is no longer playable: 1 3 cxdS
exdS 14 exdS tt'lxdS?? 1 5 tt'lxdS 'ir'xdS 16
..ih7 +!. The move 1 2 ...tt'lg6?! is also not
good as it allows 1 3 i.d6! l:te8 14 cS which
looks quite unpleasant for Black. Instead
Black makes use of his newly found control
over the f4-square and occupies the eS
outpost.

1 0 . . . h6 1 1 ..th4
Keeping the pin. Of course Black can
break it with ... g6-g5 but only at a cost of
slightly weakening the kingside.
The alternative is 1 1 ..ie3!?, allowing
Black to play ... d7-d5 but hoping that the
insertion of ... h7-h6 will be to White's ad
vantage (the h-pawn could hang in certain
variations) . After 1 1 ...d5 White can play:
a) 1 2 cxdS exdS 13 ..icS l:te8 14 l:te1
i.e6 1 5 i.xe7 l:txe 7 16 tt'lcS dxe4 1 7 ..ixe4
..id4! 1 8 tt'lxe6 (18 tt'lxb 7 'ir'b6! is good for
Black) 1 8 ... l:txe6 1 9 'ir'd2 'ir'gS 20 'ir'xgS 1 3 f4!
hxgS with a very comfortable position for Although this give Black the eS-outpost
Black in Dolmatov-Bologan, Calcutta 1 999. for good, I believe White's attacking
b) 12 exdS!? exdS 13 ..icS and now: chances against Black's weakened kingside
b1) 1 3 ... d4?! 1 4tt'ld5 (Vl.Gurevich) looks more than make up for this.
good for White. In the game R.Jackson-Oratovsky, North
b2) 1 3 ... dxc4 14 ..ixc4 bS 1 5 .idS!? (this Bay 1 998, White dithered with 1 3 l:te1 ?! and
is critical; 1 5 ..ie2 ..ib7 16 ..if3 l:te8 looks after 1 3 ...tt'l7g6! 14 i.ft b6 Black achieved a
equal) 1 5 ...tt'lxd5 16 tt'lxdS (16 ..ix8? loses solid bind on the kingside.
material after 16 ... ..ixc3!) 16 ... l:te8 17 ..ib6 1 3 ... gxf4 1 4 ..txf4 lLl7g6 1 5 ..te3 b6 1 6
(17 'ir'f3?! ..ib7 1 8 l:tad1 tt'ld4! gave Black ..te2 ..tb7 1 7 jfd2 'iii>h 7 1 8 lLld4!
the advantage in Vl.Gurevich-Kuzmin, Getting this knight back into the game
Ukraine [rapid] 1 999) 1 7 ...'ir'h4 1 8tt'lc7 ..ig4 and allowing the b-pawn to move to b3 in
19 'ir'c2 ..ieS (Gurevich mentions 1 9 ... ..if3 order to protect c4. White's position is the
but 20tt'ld2! seems like a good reply) 20 g3 easier to play and although Black has the eS
(20 h3? ..ixh3! 21 tt'lxe8 i.h2+! 22 xh2 outpost one cannot underestimate his
..ifS+ wins for Black) 20.. .'ii'f6 21 tt'lxa8 weaknesses (b6, d6 and h6).
l:txa8 and I believe that Black has reason- 1 8 . . ..l:!.c8 1 9 b3 d6 20 .l:!.ac 1 jfe7 2 1 l:!.f2

1 14
5 i.. d3: Fifth Mo v e A lterna tives for Bla ck

lt:ld7?! the freeing advance ... d7-d5.


This allows the white rook to hit the A good example of what can happen if
third rank and increases Black's problems. White fails to do so is provided in the game
Other moves would leave Black only Dolmatov-Kotsur, FIDE World Ch., Las
slightly worse. Vegas 1 999: 10 .tf4?! dS! 1 1 cxdS exdS 1 2
22 l:!.f3 'ir'e 2 d 4 1 3 tt:J b 1 lLJb4 1 4 lLJ 1 d 2 lDxd3 1 5
Now Black has to deal with ideas of .l::. h 3. 'ir'xd3 lDc6 1 6 lLJ f3 .l::.e8 1 7 .U. fd 1 .tg4 and
22 . . .l:!.h8 23 l:!.cf1 lt:lf6 24 i.. d 1 !? l:!.c7 Black, with the two bishops and passed d
25 i.. c 2 b5 pawn, had a very comfortable position.
1 0 . . . f5!

26 lt:ld5!?
This is a wonderfully deep combination. Black is obliged to seek activity. Passive
Unfortunately, there is a flaw at the end. play will result in White obtaining central
26 . . . exd5 27 lt:lf5 lt:lxe4 28 lt:lxe7 lt:lxd2 domination with moves such as .tgS (or
29 l:!.xf7 lt:le4! .tf4), 'ir'd2 and .l::. fd l .
After the obvious defence 29 ... .U.xe7 30 1 1 f3?!
.l::.xe 7 tt:Jxfl 31 .td4 .l::.g8 32 .l::.xb7 lLJd2 33 This move looks very passive and pretty
cxdS Black has an extra piece, but is in much gives Black what he wants (a kingside
zugzwang and is totally lost! bind at no cost). White has much better
30 lt:lxg6 l:!.hc8? ways to try to achieve an advantage.
30 ... .U.xf7! 31 .U.xf7 'it>xg6 32 .U.xb7 bxc4 a) 1 1 a4 f4?! 12 aS .teS 13 .td2 'ir'c7 1 4
33 bxc4 .l::. c8 offers Black good drawing lLJa4 .l::. b8 1 5 c S ! left Black very cramped on
chances. the queenside in Nijboer-Bologan, Wijk aan
31 lt:le7 l:!.e8 32l:!.xg7 + xg7 33 i..d4 + Zee 1 996. Instead Black should prevent a4-
lt:lf6 34 i.. x f6 + f8 35 i.. h4 + 1 -0 a5 with 1 1 ...b6!.
b) 11 exfS lDxfS 12 lLJe4 'ir'c7 1 3 .l::. b 1 (13
Game 43 cS!?) 1 3 . .. b6 1 4 .td2 .ib7 15 .ic3 lDeS 1 6
Stisis-Oratovsky lLJbd2 d S 17 cxdS exdS 18 lLJgS 1We7 1 9
Tel Aviv (rapid) 1 996 tt:Jdf3 d 4 was fine for Black, Solleveld
Nijboer, Breda 1 998.
1 e4 c5 2 lt:lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:lxd4 a6 c) 1 1 cS!, clamping down on the b6- and
5 i.. d 3 g6 6 c4 i.. g 7 7 lt:lb3 lt:lc6 8 lt:lc3 d6-squares, is a serious test of Black's posi
lt:lge7 9 0-0 0-0 1 0 i.. e 2 tion:
With the same idea as 10 .tgS: to prevent cl) 1 1 ...fxe4 1 2 lDxe4 b6 13 lLJd6! bxcS

1 15
Sicilian Ka n

1 4 lDxc5 ltJd4 1 5 .td3 'ikc7 16 lDce4 .teS .i.f2 "ilc7? 1 7 c 1 lLlce5 1 8 lLld4
17 .te3! ltJdfS (17 ... .txd6 is met by 18 18 ltJdS exd5 19 'ikxd5+ h8 20 'ikxa8
ltJxd6 'fkxd6 19 .te4 regaining the piece ltJc6! 21 c5 .tb7 22 cxd6 'ikd7 23 .:xc6
with some advantage) 18 .l:tct ltJc6 19 ltJxfS .txa8 24 l:%.xb6 leaves White with insuffi
exf5 20 f4 i.g7 21 ltJd6! gave White a clear cient material for the queen.
advantage, Ermenkov-Kotsur, Dubai 2000. 1 8 . . .b8 1 9 lLla4 h5 20 h3 hxg4 2 1
c2) 1 1 ...b6 12 cxb6 with a further split: hxg4 f6!
c21) 1 2... fxe4 1 3 ltJcS ltJd4 14 .tgS (14 Black's dominance on the kingside be
b7 .txb7 15 ltJxb7 'ikb6 regains the piece) gins to show. There is a very straightfor
1 4..._:b8 1 5 ltJ5xe4 l:txb6 16 ltJa4 l:%.c6 was ward plan of doubling and then tripling on
okay for Black in Isupov-Kotsur, Novo the h-ftle.
kuznetsk 1 999, but I like 1 5 ltJ3a4! after 22 b4 .i.f8 23 lLlb3 "ilh7 24 "ile 1 "ilh3
which the passed b-pawn causes Black some 25 .i.d4 lLlh4 26 "ilt2 l:lh6 27 .i.xe5
problems. dxe5 28 c5 b7 ! 0-1
c22) 1 2...'fkxb6! 1 3 .te3 'ikd8 14 'ikd2 (14
f3!? may be stronger and is certainly better
here than on move eleven; after 14 .. .f4 1 5
.tcS the big difference is the activity of
White's dark-squared bishop) 1 4... fxe4 1 5
lDxe4 d 5 1 6 lDecS lDfS 1 7 .tgS 'ikd6 1 8
l:!.act h6 and Black's central pawn pair
grants him control over some important
squares, Serner-Klee, correspondence 1 998.
1 1 . . . f4!

White is getting mated. The nicest finish


is 28 ... .:b7 29 ltJxb6 .:bh7 30 ltJxc8 'fih t +!!
31 ..t>xh1 lDxf3+ 32 ..t>g2 l:%.h2+ 33 ..t>xf3
_:7h3+ 34 'ikg3 l:%.xg3 mate.

Game 44
Motylev-Ye Jiangchuan
5hanghai 200 1

1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6


Simple and strong. Black obtains a space 5 .i.d3 g6 6 c4 .i.g7 7 tt:\e2
advantage on the kingside and blocks White's other main option is to protect
White's dark-squared bishop out of the the knight with the developing 7 .te3!? and
game. now:
1 2 g3 g5! a) 7 ... ltJc6 8 ltJxc6 bxc6?! (8 ... dxc6 looks
Keeping the bind and offering the g6- safer) 9 c5! .txb2 10 ltJd2 .txa 1 1 1 'fkxa 1 f6
square for the e7-knight. I already prefer 1 2 ltJc4 aS 1 3 ltJd6+ f8 1 4 0-0 gave White
Black's position. tremendous play for the exchange, Topalov
1 3 g4 b6 1 4 .i.d2 d6 1 5 .i.e 1 lLlg6 1 6 Eflffiov, Elista Olympiad 1998.

1 16
5 d3: Fifth Mo v e A l t e rn a tives for Bla ck

b) 7 . ..l'i'Je7 8 ltJc3 d5 9 exd5 exd5 10 0-0 obtain a clear advantage with 18 .l:tad1 !) 1 8
0-0 with a further split: exd4 'ilfxd4+ 1 9 'it> h 1 and White has an
b1) 1 1 .l:te1 .l:te8! (1 1 ...h6?! 1 2 .:lc1 ltJd7 edge due to Black's weaker king.
13 ltJf3 dxc4 14 ..i.xc4 was pleasant for c2) I like 1 2... ltJe5!, for example 1 3 ..tg5 h6
White, Ermenkov-Olafsson, Malta Olym 1 4 ..i.xf6 'ilfxf6 and Black has definite com
piad 1 980) 1 2 .l:tc1 ltJbc6 1 3 ltJxc6 bxc6 1 4 pensation for the pawn.
i..g5 ..i.e6 1 5 cxd5 cxd5 1 6 ltJa4 'ilfd6 and 7 . . .liJt6
the players agreed a draw in this level posi 7 ... ltJc6 8 0-0 ltJge7 9 ltJbc3 0-0 1 0 ..i.g5
tion, ]ansa-Miles, Hastings 1 976. h6 1 1 i..h4 d6 1 2 f4! was slightly better for
b2) 1 1 c5! ltJbc6 1 2 ltJce2 ..tg4 13 f3 White in Amonatov-Nijboer, Elista Olym
i..e6 1 4 'ilfd2 'ilfd7 1 5 .:lad1 .:lfe8 1 6 ..i.2 piad 1 998 .
.l:tad8 1 7 b4 with an edge for White in 8 0-0 0-0 9 lDbcJ lDc6 1 0 g5 h6 1 1
Apicella-Abramovic, Val Maubuee 1 989. h4
c) 7 ... d5!? 8 exd5 exd5 9 ltJc3 (9 cxd5
ltJf6! 10 'ilfa4+ ltJbd7 1 1 ltJe6 fxe6 12 dxe6
0-0 13 exd7 ..i.xd7 14 'i!fb3+ 'it>h8 1 5 ltJc3
ltJg4! gave Black a strong attack, Metaxas
Oratovsky, Heraklio 1 993) 9 ... ltJf6 10 0-0
0-0 1 1 h3 ltJbd7 1 2 cxd5 (1 2 ltJf3 dxc4 1 3
i..xc4 b 5 1 4 ..i.b3 ..i.b7 was equal in Sakha
tova-Gipslis, Biel 1 995).

1 1 . . .'ifc7
Keeping the h2-b8 diagonal open and re
taining options over the d-pawn. The con
servative 1 1 ...d6 is also playable, though.
1 2 l:!.c1 lDh5 1 3 f4 f5
Grabbing the b-pawn is virrually suicidal:
1 3 ... 'ilfb6+ ?! 1 4 i.. 2 'ilfxb2 1 5 i..c 5! d6
(1 5 ....l:te8 16 .:lc2 traps the queen) 1 6 ..i.xd6
After 12 cxd5 we have the following pos ..i.xc3 1 7 ltJxc3 .l:td8 18 e5 (Ftacnik) and,
sibilities: besides having problems with his queen,
c1) 1 2...ltJb6 1 3 'ilfb3! (13 ltJf3?! ltJbxd5 Black has also managed to give up all of the
1 4 ltJxd5 ltJxd5 1 5 ..i.g5 'ilfa5 1 6 'ilfb3 i..e6 dark squares.
gave Black the better minor pieces in Milu 14 'iii>h 1 lDd8?
lordachescu, Bucharest 1 999) 1 3 ... ltJbxd5 This knight manoeuvre to the kingside is
14 ltJxd5 ltJxd5 1 5 ..i.c4 ltJxe3 16 fxe3 just far too ambitious and allows White a
..i.xd4 (16 ... 'ilfe7 17 .:lad 1 ! b5?! 18 ..i.xf7+ ! free rein on the queenside and in the centre.
llxf7 1 9 ltJc6 'i!fc7 2 0 ltJd8 ..i.f5 21 ltJxf7 14 ... fxe4 1 5 ..i.xe4 ltJxf4 16 ..i.g3 g5 1 7 c5!
'ilfxf7 22 'ilfxf7+ 'ifr>xf7 23 e4 wins for also leaves Black in a bind so Black should
White) 1 7 ..i.xf7+ 'it>g7 (after 1 7 ...'it>h8?!, prepare to fianchetto his light-squared
instead of lordachescu's 18 exd4, White can bishop with 14 ... b6!.

117
Sicilian Kan

1 5 c5! liJf7 1 9 . . . liJh8


Black is already in some trouble. A prob Or 1 9 ... exf5 20 'ir'g6+ Wh8 21 l'Lld5 'ir'c6
lem with the knight being on the back rank 22 l'Llf6.
can be seen in the variation 1 5 ... 'ir'xc5? 1 6 20 i.d3 i.g7 2 1 i.e7 l:!.f7 22 'i'h4 d5
l'Lld5 'ir'a5 1 7 l'Lle7+ and the bishop i s lost. 23 cxd6 'i'b6 24 f5 'i'xb2 25 f6 1 -0
1 6 exf5 gxf5
16 ... exf5 17 l'Lld5 is simply horrible for Game 45
Black. Jamieson-Adamski
Nice O(ympiad 1 974

1 e4 c5 2 liJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 liJxd4 a6


5 i.d3 g6 6 0-0
Another possibility is 6 l'Llc3 .ig7 7 .ie3
l'Lle7 8 'ir'd2 d5 9 exd5 l'Llxd5 and now:
a) 1 0 .ig5!? 'ir'd6 1 1 l'Llde2 h6 12 .ih4
l'Llc6 (12... l'Llxc3 13 l'Llxc3 'ir'b4 14 l'Lle4
'ir'xd2+ 1 5 Wxd2 looks better for White) 1 3
.ig3 'ir'd8 14 l'Llxd5!? 'ir'xd5 1 5 l'Llc3 'ir'd4
(1 5 ... 'ir'xg2 1 6 0-0-0 looks dangerous for
Black) 16 0-0 0-0 1 7 .if4 Wh7 1 8 .ie3
(Kavalek-F.Olafsson, Buenos Aires 1 980)
1 7 i.xf5! i.f6 and now I don't think Black is worse after
By not accepting the bishop, Black ad 1 8 ... 'ir'b4.
mits he is already losing, but 1 7 ... exf5 18 b) 1 0 l'Llxd5 'ir'xd5 1 1 0-0 0-0 1 2 .ie2
l'Lld5 'ir'a5 1 9 l'Llec3! leaves the h5-knight 'ir'd6 1 3 .:.ad1 'ir'c7 14 .ih6 l'Lld7 1 5 .ixg7
with nowhere to go. Wxg7 16 c4 is perhaps a shade better for
1 8 liJd4 i.xd4 White, Leko-Vyzmanavin, Leon 1 993.
The lines 18 ...exf5 1 9 'ir'xh5 xd4 20 6 . . . i.g7
'ir'g6+ Wh8 21 l'Lld5 'ir'c6 22 l'Llf6 and
18.. .xh4 1 9 'ir'xh5 exf5 20 'ir'g6+ Wh8 21
l'Lld5 'ir'd8 22 l'Llxf5 l:tg8 23 'ir'xf7 are both
easily winning for White.
1 9 'i'xh5

7 i.e3
7 c3 is rather tepid: 7 ... l'Llc6 8 l'Llxc6 bxc6
9 l'Lla3 l'Lle7 1 0 .if4 d5 1 1 'ir'd2 0-0 1 2 .:.ad1
e5 was equal in Tomczak-Sax, Germany
1 992.

1 18
5 i.. d3: Fifth Mo v e A lt e rn a tives for Bla ck

7 lLlc6
. . . 16 cxb4 'iti>g7 and Black had equalised in
Or: Liberzon-Torre, Amsterdam 1 977.
a) 7 . ..lDe7 8 c4 l2Jbc6 9 l2Jxc6! is good for c2) 10 cS!? i.xb2!? (1 0 ... l2Je7 1 1 c3!
White: 9 ... lDxc6 1 0 lDc3 0-0 1 1 'W'd2 'W'c7 reaches the main game) 1 1 c4 l2Je7 (or
12 e2! 12 ... l2JeS 13 cS! and Black has 1 1 ...xa1 1 2 'W'xa1 f6 1 3 exdS cxdS 14 cxdS
problems developing his queenside, Zon exdS 1 S .:.e1 + 'iti>f7 1 6 l2Jf3 [Sokolov] and I
takh-Peev, Lazarevac 1 999, while 9 ... bxc6?! would prefer to be White, despite the mate
10 cS! xb2 1 1 lDd2! gives White tremen rial deficit) 12 exdS cxdS 1 3 .:.b1 f6 1 4
dous play, Topalov-J .Polgar, Las Palmas lDe4! eS ( 1 4. . .dxe4 loses to 1 S xe4 .id7
1 994. 16 iff3) 1 S cxdS ltJxdS 16 c4 and Black's
b) Also important is 7 ... d6!? and now: king will never be safe. The game
b 1) 8 c4 l2Jf6 9 l2Jc3 0-0 would reach A.Sokolov-Bologan, Germany 1 998 con
lines similar to the one studied in Game 6. cluded 16...xh2+ 17 'iii>xh2 'W'h4+ 18 'iti>g1
Indeed, after 10 .:.c1 l2Jbd7 1 1 f3 'W'c7 1 2 'ii'xe4 19 d3 'it' f4 20 'W'b3 d7 21 'ii'b7
'iVd2 b 6 1 3 .:.fd1 b7 1 4 fl .:.ac8 1 S 'ii'2 .:.c8 22 .:.fcl 'iVd2 23 .ixa6 'ii'xa2 24 bS
we have a direct transposition. .:.xeS 2S 'ii'x d7+ and Black resigned.
b2) 8 'W'd2!? l2Jc6 9 e2 lDf6 1 0 l2Jc3 0-0 8 lLlge7 9 lL'ld2 d5?!
. . .

1 1 .:.ad 1 lDe8 12 f4 looks better for White, This is too early and allows White to
Schebler-Den Boer, Antwerp 2000. reach a favourable set-up.
8 c3 9 ... 0-0 is stronger: 10 lDxc6 (10 f4 looks
A more ambitious move order is 8 l2Jxc6 logical) 1 0...l2Jxc6 1 1 l2Jc4!? dS 12 exdS exdS
bxc6 9 l2Jd2!? and now:
a) 13 l2Jd2?! Oame) d4 14 cxd4 l2Jxd4 1 S
l2Jb3 l2Jxb3 1 6 'W'xb3 i.e6 with an edge to
Black, Pedzich-Bologan, Mamaia 1 9 9 1 .
b) 1 3 l2Jb6! i s critical, when Black must
play either 13 ... l:r.b8 or head for the compli-
cations of 13 ... d4!? 14 i.xd4 i.xd4 1 S lDxa8
a7 16 e4 'W'e7.
1 0 lLlxc6 bxc6
White also keeps the advantage after
1 O... l2Jxc6 1 1 exdS 'ii'x dS 1 2 l2Jc4!.
1 1 i..c 5!

and now:
a) 9 ... xb2? 10 l2Jc4! xa1 1 1 'ii'x a1 f6
1 2 lDd6+ is horrible for Black.
b) 9 ... l2Je7 10 c3 .:.b8! (10... dS?! 1 1 cS
reaches the main game) 1 1 'ii'c 2 0-0 1 2
.:.ad1 d6 1 3 f4 'W'c7 1 4 'iti>h1 c S ! 1 S l2J f3
b7 looked okay for Black i n Malakhov
Landa, Elista 1 997.
c) 9 ... dS with a further split:
cl) 10 c3 l2Jf6! 1 1 i.cS lDd7 12 i.a3
i.f8! 1 3 xf8 xf8 14 b4 aS 1 S l2Jb3 axb4

1 19
Sic ilian Ka n

As we have seen already, this bishop is a2) 1 2 ifd4 l:!.d7?! 1 3 l2Jc3 lbxc3 1 4
very well placed on this square and it's ex ifxc3 left Black i n some trouble i n Be
tremely difficult for Black to oppose it. This liavsky-Kurajica, Sarajevo 1 982, but Be
in itself is enough to give White a substan liavsky's suggested improvement of 12 ... l:!.c7
tial advantage. 13 l:!.d 1 l:!.d7! is a tough nut to crack.
1 1 . . 0-0 1 2 f4 f6 1 3 'iie2 .l:!.f7 1 4lt::lf3
. b) 9 lbc3 and now:
aS 1 5 c4 'iic 7 16 lt::ld4 .i.f8 1 7 cxd5 b1) 9 ... .ie7 10 cxdS cxdS 1 1 exdS exdS
exd5 18 .l:!.ac 1 dxe4? 12 ifa4+ .id7 (1 2 ... ifd7 13 Ite1 ! ifxa4 14
A mistake, although Black was already in lbxa4 1J..e6 1 S 1J..e 3 0-0 1 6 .icS was a very
big trouble. unpleasant endgame for Black in Fischer
1 9 .i.c4 f5 20 .i.xf7 + 'it>xf7 21 'ifc4 + Petrosian, Buenos Aires [7th match game]
'it>g7 22 lt::l b 5! 'iid 7 23 .i.d4 + h6 24 1971) 1 3 ifd4 .ic6 14 .if4 0-0 1 S l:!.ad1
.l:!.c3 g5 25 'iff7 lt::lg6 26 l:.h3 + lt::l h4 27 ifaS 16 .ieS with an edge to White, Suta
'iif6 + 1 -0 Nevednichaya, correspondence 1 983.
b2) 9 ... d4!? isn't so bad: 10 lba4 cS 1 1 eS
Game 46 lDd7 12 1J..e4 Ita7 13 f4 fS!? 14 exf6 lDxf6
J. Polgar-Miezis 1 S .ic6+ 1J.. d7 16 "ii' e 2 Wf7 1 7 .ixd7 ifxd7
Ta/linn 200 1 18 b3 1J..d6 1 9 lbb2 l:!.e8 20 lDd3 'iic7 21
.id2 aS 22 l:.ae1 was only a bit better for
1 e4 c5 2lt::lf 3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt::lxd4 a6 White, Anka-Zvara, Pardubice 1 999.
5 .i.d3lt::lc6 6 lt::lxc6 dxc6 7 lt::ld 2
6... bxc6 has never been very popular, A good route for the knight, which plans
having suffered a high-proft.le loss at the to make c4 its home. From there it eyes the
hands of Bobby Fischer. That said, it's vulnerable spots of b6, d6 and eS.
probably not quite as bad as its reputation. 7 7 0-0 is likely to transpose into the main
0-0 dS 8 c4! lDf6 lines, for example: 7 ... eS 8 lbd2 'iic7 (or
8 ... lDf6 9 lbc4 'iic 7 and we have transposed
to the main game) 9 a4 (the immediate 9
lbc4 can be met by 9 ... bS) 9 ... lDf6 and now:
a) 1 0 lbc4 transposes to the main game.
b) 10 aS!?, clamping down on the queen
side, looks interesting:
b1) 1 0 ... 1J.. b4 1 1 lbc4 i.e6 (1 1 ....ig4!?)
1 2 iff3 .ixc4 13 .ixc4 0-0 14 .igS lDe8 1 S
.:!.fd 1 lbd6 ( 1 S. . ..ixaS? 1 6 ifa3! .ib6 1 7
.ie7) 16 .ib3 .icS 1 7 l:!.d3 and White had
an edge, Stefansson-Ahmed, Tanta 2001 .
b2) 1 0 ... 1J..e6 1 1 iie2 .icS 1 2 .ic4 'iie7
13 lbb3 .ia7 14 l:!.a4 0-0 and Black has
and now: equalised, Castro Rojas-Jimenez Zerquera,
a) 9 cxdS cxdS 1 0 exdS lDxdS (10 ... exdS Cienfuegos 1 976.
1 1 lbc3 .ie7 transposes to note 'b 1 ') 1 1 7 . . . e5 8lt::lc4
.ie4 l:.a7 with another split: 8 "ii' h S is the subject of our next game.
a1) 12 1LxdS ifxdS 1 3 ifxdS exdS 1 4 8 . . . lt::lf6
.ie3 l:.b7 1 S b 3 .ib4 1 6 l:.d1 .ie6 was a The most popular response. Other tries
level ending, Ott-Melcher, Germany 1 994. include:

1 20
5 i.. d 3 : Fifth Mo v e A lterna tives for Bla ck

a) 8 ... i.e6 9 i.d2!? i.xc4 10 ..i.xc4 'ii'd4 Cioara-Miezis, Castellaneta 1 999.


1 1 'ii'e2 b5 12 ..i.b3 tLlf6 1 3 0-0-0 'ii'xe4 1 4 b) 10 f4 is an ambitious attempt to open
.l:the1 'ii'xe2 1 5 .l:txe2 e 4 16 g4! and White is the position before Black is able to organise
better, Vallejo Pons-Miezis, European Team his development. Play continues 1 0 ... tLlg4!
Ch., Leon 200 1 . 1 1 'it>h 1 and here Black has two alternatives:
b) 8. . .tLle7 9 ..i.e3 and now: b1) 1 1 ...b5 12 tbxe5 tbxe5 1 3 fxe5 'ii'x e5
b 1) 9 .....i.e6 1 0 'ii'h 5 tbg6 1 1 0-0-0 (1 1 14 a4 .i.e7 1 5 ..i.f4 'ii'xb2! (1 5 ... 'ii'c 5?! 16
tbxe5?? 'ii'a 5+ is a trick to beware ol) 'ii'e 2 b4 17 e5 left White with an advantage
1 1 ...'ii'c 7 1 2 ..i.b6 'ii'b 8 1 3 g3 and White's on both sides, Rowson-Solak, Halle 1 995)
pieces occupy active posts, Plaskett-Miles, 16 axb5 cxb5 17 e5 0-0 1 8 ..i.e4 i.e6! 1 9
Bergsjo 1981 . ..i.xa8 l:txa8 2 0 'ii' f3 .l:tc8 2 1 .l:txa6 'ii'xc2 22
b2) 9 ...tbg6 1 0 tLlb6 .l:tb8 1 1 tbxc8 .l:txc8 i.g5 ..i.b4 23 .l:ta8 ..i.f8 and White's small
12 'ii'g4 ..i.d6 13 0-0-0 0-0 14 ..i.c4 and the material plus will be very difficult to realise,
bishop pair give White a small advantage Forster-Solak, Halon 1 995.
typical for this variation, Tirnman-Miles, b2) 1 1 ...i.c5 1 2 'ii' f3 ..i.e6 13 'ii'g3 h5 14
Bugojno 1 978. f5 ..i.xc4 1 5 i.xc4 0-0-0 16 i.e2 tLlf6 17
9 0-0 ..i.f3 'ii'e 7 18 ..i.g5 h4 1 9 'ii'h 3 ..i.b6 was
9 tbxe5?? loses to 9 ...'ii'a5+. unclear in Delchev-Cappon, Bethune 1 998.
9 .'i'c7
. . c) 10 ..i.d2!? (this looks quite promising)
9 .....i.g4 10 'ii'e 1 ! tLld7 1 1 f4 is promising and now:
for White, for example 1 1 .. ...i.e6 1 2 'it>h1 f6 cl) 10 .....i.g4 1 1 'ii'e 1 b5 1 2 tbe3 i.c5 1 3
1 3 i.e3 'ii'c 7 1 4 a4 0-0-0 1 5 f5 ..i.xc4 1 6 tLlxg4 tbxg4 1 4 'ii'e2 tLlf6 1 5 b 4 i.b6 1 6 c4
..i.xc4 i.c5 1 7 i.d2 ..tb8 1 8 b 4 ..i.d4 1 9 .l:t b 1 was pleasant for White in Leko-Khalifman,
tLlb6 20 ..tb3 tbc8 21 ..te6 .l:td6 22 c3 ..i.a7 Budapest (2nd match game) 2000.
23 c4 and White is launching forward on c2) 1 0 ... b5!? 1 1 ..i.a5 (1 1 tLle3?! i.c5 is
the queenside, Ye Jiangchuan-Miles, Gron nothing for White) 1 1 ...'ii'b 8 12 lDb6 .l:ta7
ingen 1 997. (12...i.g4 1 3 'ii'e 1 l:ta7 14 'ii'e 3 :b7 15 c4!
looks promising for White) 1 3 ltJxc8 (13 c4?
..i.g4 14 'ii'c 2 ..i.c5 1 5 cxb5 ..i.xb6 16 'ii'xc6+
liJd7 lost a piece for insufficient compensa
tion in Santo Roman-Miezis, French League
1 999) 1 3. .. 'ii'x c8 14 a4

10 a4!?
An important moment. White has a few
ways to try for an advantage:
a) 10 ..i.e3 ..te6! 1 1 ..i.b6 'ii'b 8 12 a4 tLld7!
13 ..i.e3 b5 14 axb5 cxb5 1 5 tLla5 ..i.c5 16
'ii'e2 0-0 equalised comfortably for Black in with a further split:

12 1
Sic ilian Kan

c21) 1 4...l:td7 1 S li'e2 li'b8 (or 1S ... i.d6 bishop. In the game Miezis allows his pawns
16 c4 b4 17 cS!) 16 c4 (16 b4, intending c2- to be doubled but his king never finds a safe
c4 without allowing ... bS-bS, is also interest haven afterwards.
ing) 16 ... b4 17 cS xeS 18 .l:.acl b6 1 9 1 1 . . . i.e6
xb4 ..ix2+ 20 .l:.x2 li'xb4 21 .l:.xc6 1;e7 1 1 ...i.g4 1 2 li'e1 tt'ld7 allows the bishop
(Reefat-Miezis, Dhaka 2001) and now 22 out, but after 1 3 1;h 1 f6 14 d2 0-0 1 S b4!
li'f3! l:.hd8 23 l:.xf6 gxf6 24 li'xf6+ looks d4 16 c3 a7 17 aS .l:.ae8 18 f4! White
very good for White. built up a strong initiative in Salrn-Sande,
c22) 1 4 ... li'b8 1 S axbS (again I like 1 S correspondence 1 976.
b4!?) 1 S . . .axbS 16 c3 cS 1 7 b4 .l:.xa 1 1 8 1 2 ..ixf6 gxf6 1 3 'ii'f 3 <i;e7 14 c3 h5 1 5
li'xa1 d6 and White i s a tiny bit better, ttJe3 .l:tagS 1 6 h3 .l:tg5 1 7 .l:tfd 1 l:!.hgS 1 8
Handke-Miezis, Andorra 2001 . ..if1 h4 1 9 b4 ..ia7 20 <i;h 1 'ii'c S 2 1 l:!.d2
1 0 . . . ..ic5 .!:!.dB 22 l:!.xdS 'ii'x dS 23 .l:ld 1 'ii'g B?
1 0... e6!, planning to answer 1 1 gS 23 ...li'c8 would have kept Black in the
with 1 1 ...tt'ld7, looks stronger to me. White game. Now White can win.
protects e4 with 1 1 'ti'f3 and now:
a) 1 1 ...xc4 1 2 xc4 cS 1 3 aS 0-0 1 4
c 3 .l:.fd8 1 S gS 'ii'e 7 16 b 4 a7 1 7 .l:.ad1
gives White that traditional two bishops
edge, Wahls-Miezis, Bern 1 99S.
b) 1 1 ...cS! 1 2 li'g3 tt'ld7 13 aS (13
li'xg7 is critical but is also hardly likely to
appeal to many players) 1 3 ... f6 14 1;h1 gS
1 S i.e3 hS 16 ..ixcS tt'lxcS and Black was
not worse in Short-Capelan, Solingen 1 986.
10 ...g4 1 1 li'ct cS 12 1;h1 bS 1 3
tt'le3 d7 1 4 f4! exf4 1 S tt'lfS gS? 16 li'c3
e7 17 tt'lxe7 1;xe7 18 li'cS+ li'd6 1 9
li'xgS was winning for White i n Pietrusiak 24 tiJd5 + ! cxd5 25 exd5 'ii'c S
Filipowicz, Piotrkow Trybunalski 1 970. Or 2S ... i.c8 26 d6+ 1;d7 27 li'xf6 li'd8
1 1 ..ig5! 28 li'xf7+ 1;c6 29 d7 xd7 30 li'c4+ 1;b6
31 aS mate.
26 dxe6 fxe6 27 'ii'e4 f5 28 'ii'x h4 'ii'gS
29 b5 axb5 30 ..ixb5 <i;t6 31 .l:td7 e4 32
l:!.xb7 ..ic5 33 l:!.c7 .itS 34 f4! exf3 35
'ii'd4 + <i;g6 36 ..ieB + 1 -0

Game 47
Nunn-Khurtsidze
World Team Ch., Lucerne 1997

1 e4 c5 2 ttJt3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ttJxd4 a6


5 ..id3 ttJc6 6 ttJxc6 dxc6 7 ttJd2 e5 8
'ii'h 5 ..id6 9 ttJc4 ttJt6
This move is now annoying for Black as Once again Black decides that giving up
if the knight retreats to d7, it blocks the c8- the bishop pair is the safest course. The

1 22
5 i.. d3 : Fifth Mo v e A lterna tives for Bla ck

main alternative runs 9 ...JI..c 7 10 il..g 5 li:'lf6 which may come out to either b2 or, after
1 1 'ii'e2 h6 12 il..h4 'ii'e7 1 3 0-0-0 i.e6 14 f4 a2-a4, the a3-square.
i.xc4 1 5 il..xc4 b5 16 il.. b 3. 1 3 . . . b5 14 a4 .l:!.fd8 1 5 i.. g 5?!
Now that a rook has appeared on d8,
White feels it's worthwhile pinning the
knight. However, this allows Black a cute
equalising trick.
1 5 l:td 1 ! ? (Ribli) keeps an edge. Notice
that 1 5 ...il..g4?! 16 f3 'ii'd4+? doesn't work
on account of 1 7 il..e 3!.
1 5 . . . i..x b3! 1 6 axb5 cxb5 1 7 i.. xf6 gxf6
1 8 .l:!.ad 1 i..e6 1 9 i..x b5 ffxd 1 ! 20 lbd 1
.l:!.xd 1 + 21 fr'xd 1 axb5

This position has scored well for White,


for example:
a) 16 ... l:.d8 17 f5 0-0 18 g4 l:.d6 19 l:.xd6
il..xd6 20 g5 hxg5 21 il..xg5 and White will
get a very strong attack, Hoexter-Kruchem,
correspondence 1 995.
b) 1 6 ...0-0 17 il..x f6! 'ii'x f6 18 l:.d7 il..d8
(or 18 ...'ii'xf4+ 1 9 b1 il..b6 20 l:. fl 'ii'xh2
21 'ii'g4 h8 22 l:td3! f5 23 exf5 e4 24 l:td7
'ii'e 5 25 f6! and White won, Perunovic
Solak, Lazarevac 1 999) 1 9 l:tfl exf4 20 g3 Nominally White is material ahead, but
'ii'g6 21 e5 and Black is in some trouble, it's very easy for Black to erect an impreg
Rawley-Lifson, correspondence 1 985. nable fortress.
1 0 lt:lxd6 + ffxd6 1 1 ffe2 i..e6 1 2 0-0 22 g4 h6 23 'it>g2 'it>g7 24 g3 lla4 25
0-0 f3 .l:!.a8 26 'ilr'd2 l:!.e8 27 h4 i..c4 28 'ilr'd7
.l:!.e6 29 'it>f2 lla6 30 ffe7 .l:[e6 31 'ilr'd8
i..a2 32 'iti>e3 i..c4 33 'it>d2 i.. a 2 34 'it>c3
i..c4 35 'ilr'd2 i..a 2 36 'iti>b4 i..c4 37 fr'f2
I:!.a6 38 fr'g3 l:!.e6 39 'it>c5 g6 40 'ilr'g2
'it>g7 41 'ilr'd2 'iti>g6 42 'ilr'g2 'iti>g7 43 g5
fxg5 44 hxg5 hxg5 45 ffxg5 + f8 46
'ilr'g2 .l:!.g6 47 fr'h2 .l:!.e6 48 fr'h8 + 'iti>e7
49 'ilr'g8 .l:!.g6 50 fr'b8 .l:!.e6 51 fr'h8 i..f 1
52 fr'h1 % - %

Game 48
Sulskis-Eingorn
Koszalin 1 999
1 3 b3!
White makes good use of the bishop, 1 e4 c5 2 lt:lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt::lxd4 a6

1 23
Sicilian Kan

5 ..td3 'i'b6 lt:Jc3, followed by i.e3, gives White a huge


Hoping to kick White's knight from the lead in development) 8 i.e3 'fic7 9 c4 li:Jf6
centre, but White doesn't have to play ball. 1 0 lt:Jc3 i.e7 1 1 l:.cl lt:Je5 1 2 i.e2 0-0 1 3 b3
6 c3! l:te8 14 f4 lt:Jg6 1 5 h1 b6 1 6 f5 lt:Je5 1 7
'fie1 h8 1 8 'fig3 was better for White in
Adams-Bistric, Neum 2002.
c) 7 lt:Jxc6 'fixc6 8 0-0 d6 9 c4 li:Jf6 10
'fie2 i.e7 11 lt:Jc3 lt:Jd7 1 2 f4 0-0 1 3 i.e3 b6
14 l:.f3 i.b7 1 5 l:.h3 with a strong kingside
attack, Anand-J .Polgar, Leon 2000.

I believe this simple move is the strong


est reply. Black must now either add extra
pressure to d4 or huddle back into a
Hedgehog strucrure.
6 li:Jb3 'fic7 7 0-0 li:Jf6 8 c4 (for 8 lt:Jc3
b5, see Chapter 7 under the move order 5
lt:Jc3 b5 6 i.d3 'fib6 7 lt:Jb3 'fic7 8 0-0 li:Jf6) 7 0-0 tt'lf6 8 'i'e2 d6
8 ... d6 9 lt:Jc3 leads to similar play to that in We have reached a main line position ex
Games 37-38 and can often transpose. The cept that White has the extra move c2-c3.
two differences are that Black's queen is Narurally White can now transpose into
already committed to c7 but his bishop has positions dealt with in Chapter 1 by playing
not yet moved to e7. Black may use the 9 c4, but why not try to make use of the
latter difference in some variations, for ex extra tempo?
ample, 9 ... lt:Jbd7 10 f4 (10 a4!?) 1 0 ... g6!? 1 1 9 f4! ? tt'lbd7 1 0 tt'ld2
'fie2 i.g7 1 2 i.d2 0-0 1 3 l:.ael b6 1 4 h1
i.b7 and Black had reached a perfect de
fensive set-up in Gullaksen-Zagorskis, Co
penhagen 1 998.
6. . . 'i'c7
Alternatively:
a) 6 ... i.c5?! 7 li:Jd2! (this could also arise
from 5 ... i.c5 6 c3 'fib6?!) 7 ... i.xd4 8 cxd4
'fixd4 9 lt:Jc4 and, with i.e3 corning, Black
is already in serious trouble.
b) 6 ...lt:Jc6 and now:
b1) 7 i.e3!? i.c5 (7 ... 'fixb2?? 8 li:Jb3
traps the queen) 8 li:Jd2 transposes to Game
41. With the knight protected on d4, White
b2) 7 0-0 d6 (7... lt:Jxd4 8 cxd4 'fixd4 9 does not have to worry about a pin with

1 24
5 i. d 3 : Fifth Mo v e A lterna tives for Bla ck

... 'ii'b 6. Consequently, White need not hurry


to play c;ith 1 .
1 o . . . e5!?
Or:
a) 1 0...g6 1 1 f5 e5 12 tLle6! gave White
the advantage in Sulypa-Brustkern, Berlin
1 998.
b) 10 ... e7 1 1 tiJ2f3 (preparing e4-e5)
1 1 ...tLlc5 1 2 i.c2 e5 1 3 tLlf5 0-0 14 fxe5
dxe5 15 tLl3h4 d8 1 6 'ii' f3 c;ith8 1 7 i.e3
g6 18 tLlh6 e6 19 :ad 1 e7 20 b4 tLlcd7
21 g5 l:tae8 22 i.b3 'ii'b 6+ 23 c;ith1 xb3
24 axb3 and White has strong pressure on
the kingside, Grabarczyk-J aracz, Polanica 36. . . i.f6?? 37 l:.d6! l:.xd6 38 i.xd6 1 -0
Zdroj 1 999.
Game 49
Wydrowski-Panter
Comspondence 1 996

1 e4 c5 2 lDf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lbxd4 a6


5 i.d3 lbe7 6 0-0 lbbc6
The main alternative is 6 ... ttJec6 and here
I like the simple 7 c3, for example:
a) 7 ... d5 8 exd5 'ii'x d5 9 i.e3 e7 1 0
tLld2 tLlxd4 1 1 xd4 0-0 1 2 'ii'c 2 with a
pleasant position for White, Adams
Portisch, Yerevan Olympiad 1 996.
b) 7...e7 8 e3 b5 9 tLld2 i.b7 10 f4
1 1 fxe5 dxe5 1 2 lDf5 lbc5 1 3 i.c2 i.e6 0-0 1 1 'ii'h 5! (highlighting a flaw of 5 ...tLle7
1 4 lbb3 lbcd7 1 5 ..tg5 h6 16 i.h4 g6 - the white queen can often rest unmolested
1 7 lbe3 ..tg7 1 8 lbd2! 0-0 1 9 i.b3 on this square) 1 1 ...tLlxd4 12 cxd4 g6 1 3
White's control over the d5-square, cou 'ii'h 3 and White has the advantage, Lutz
pled with the eventual control on the d-ftle, Nijboer, Venlo 2000.
promises him a useful advantage to work Notice that 6 ... g6 7 c4 g7 8 e3 trans
with. poses to the note to Black's 7th move in
1 9 . . .'ii'c6 20 .l:l.ad 1 l:.ae8 2 1 'ii'f 3 b5 22 Game 45.
h3 'ii'b 7 23 i.xe6 l:.xe6 24 lbb3 'ii'a 7 25 7 lbb3
'iitth 1 a5 26 lbd5 a4 27 i.f2 b7 28 It makes sense for White to avoid an ex
lbc5 lbxc5 29 i.xc5 l:.c8 30 'ii'e 3 lDh5 change of knights as now Black will have to
31 'iitth 2 lbf4 32 g3 lbxd5 33 l:.xd5 h5 expend another tempo on his e7-knight in
34 'ii'd 3 'ii'c6 35 i.b4 .l:!.b8 36 'iittg 2 order to prepare kingside castling.
7 c3 tLle5?! 8 f4 tLlxd3 9 'ii'xd3 'ii'c7 1 0
see following diagram
e3 tLlc6 1 1 c 4 led to a typical white edge
White is in total control over the posi in the game ] .Polgar-Bischoff, Ohrid 2001 ,
tion, but Black's next move does make but I prefer Ribli's suggestion of 7 ...d5!.
things very easy for him. 7 . . . lbg6

1 25
Sicilian Kan

7 ...g6 8 c4 .1Lg7 9 tLlc3 transposes to good advertisement for 5 ...tLlc7.


Games 42 and 43. This may well be Black's 20 . . .i.fB 21 a3 lL\c6 22 .rf.d 1 -.as 23
best choice here. lt'ld5 lt:'lxd5 24 exd5 lt'lbB

8 c4 25 lt'le6! ! 1 -0
Erecting the Maroczy Bind, although After 25 .. .fxe6 26 f6! Black is getting
there is also nothing wrong with abstaining mated, for example 26 ...tLld7 27 ..i.xh7+
from this to gain an extra tempo for attack: 'it>xh7 28 'ilfhS+ 'it>g8 29 f7, or 26 ... 'il'c7 27
8 f4 i.e7 9 tLlc3 bS 10 ..i.e3 iJ.. b7 1 1 'ilfhS! fxg7 ..i.xg7 28 'ilfhS 'ilff7 29 ..i.xh7+ 'it>f8 30
gave White the advantage in Arakharnia iJ..c S+ .l:tc7 31 .!::. fl .
Grant-Portisch, London 1 996.
B . . . d6 9 i.e3 i.e7 10 lL\c3 b6 1 1 .rf.c 1 Game 50
0-0 1 2 f4 lteB Sax-Fogarasi
Hungarian League 1 997

1 e4 c5 2 lLif3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lL\xd4 a6


5 ..td3 d5!?

1 3 llf3!
With Black's knight on g6 rather than f6,
this plan of attack docs suggest itself.
1 3 . . . i.d7 1 4 .l:.h3 lLib4 1 5 i.b1 e5 16 f5
lLif4 1 7 .rf.g3 b5 1 8 c5! dxc 5 1 9 lL\xc5 Somehow this doesn't look right. After
.tea 20 -.g4 all, Black has not yet developed a piece and
Already there arc very serious threats! I here he is, offering to open up the position.
must admit that this game is certainly not a However, appearances are a bit deceptive;

126
5 i. d 3 : Fifth Mo ve A lt e rn a tives for Bla ck

it's not quite as bad as it looks! 20 .t3 (Yakovich) would have given White
6 exd5 'i'xd5 a clear advantage. Note that this game came
Play somewhat resembles a major line in from the French move order.
the French Tarrasch (1 e4 e6 2 d4 d5 3 d2 1 0 . . . lt'lbd7 1 1 lt'lg3! ? lt'le5 1 2 i.c2 i.d7
c5 4 exd5 'il'xd5 5 g3 cxd4 6 .tc4 'il'd6 7
0-0 f6 8 b3 lLlc6 9 bxd4 xd4 1 0
lLlxd4). In that line Black is behind i n de
velopment but his solid kingside pawn
structure gives him a reasonable theoretical
standing.
7 0-0 lt'lf6 8 lt'lc3 'i'd8 9 lt'le4!
Cleverly transposing into another line of
the French Tarrasch (1 e4 e6 2 d4 d5 3 lLld2
c5 4 g3 cxd4 5 lLlxd4 a6 6 .id3 dxe4 7
lLlxe4 f6 8 0-0), which is known to be
good for White.
White has many other alternatives that
would give a small plus, for example 9 .tf4 1 3 ii'e2
.te7 1 0 3! c6 1 1 'il'e2 0-0 1 2 e5!, as More aggressive is 13 .tg5! 0-0 (13. .. h6!?)
in Pupo-Armas, Cuba 1 998. 14 1t'e2 c6 1 5 ad1 'it'c7 1 6 fe 1 ! (Sax)
9 . . . i.e7 when White has a good attacking set-up.
9 ... bd7 10 c3 (or 10 b3!?) 10 ....te7 is 1 3 . . .lt'lc6 14 .:.d 1 'i'c7 1 5 i.g5 0-0 1 6
another way of reaching the text. lt'lh5 lt'lxh5 1 7 ifxh5 g6 1 8 ifh6 .i.xg5
1 0 c3 1 9 Wxg5 .l:.ad8 20 h4
More dynamic is 10 b3!? bd7?! This allows Black to consolidate. Fogarasi
(10...xe4 1 1 .ixe4 d7 is stronger) 1 1 suggests 20 3! 'it>g7 and only then 21 h4.
.tb2 xe4 1 2 xe6! fxe6 1 3 .ixg7 .tf6 1 4 20 . . .'i'e5! 21 lt'lf3 'i'xg5 22 lt'lxg5 lt'le7
.txh8 .txh8 1 5 'il'h5+ f8 1 6 .txe4 .txa1 23 .l:.d2 i.c6 24 ad 1 xd2 25 .:.xd2
1 7 l:ha1 lLlf6 (Yakovich-Tolnai, Kecskemet .i.d5 26 lt'le4 'it>g7 27 lt'ld6 b5 28 a4
1 991) and now 1 8 'il'e5 'il'e7 1 9 d1 g8 Y:z - Y:z

127
Sicilian Kan

Summary
S ... g6 is tricky and may catch the unsuspecting white player off his guard. There's a subtle
difference here to the ... g6 lines in Chapter 1 and White must be careful not to allow Black
to play a liberating ... d7-d5 advance under favourable circumstances. That said, 10 ..tgS in
the main line (Game 42) seems to promise White some advantage, while 7 lLle2 (Game 44)
also looks promising for the first player.
If you are the type of player quite happy to be very slightly worse in a quiet position and
to draw many games as Black, then S ... ltJc6 (Games 46-47) is an ideal weapon. Luckily there
are not too many of these players around, as these lines aren't the most exciting!

1 e4 c5 2 lbf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6 5 i.d3 g6


S ... lLlc6 6 lLlxc6 dxc6 7 lLld2 eS
8 'iih S - Game 47; 8 ltJc4 (D)- Game 46
S ... 'iib6 - Game 48
S ... lLle7 (D) - Game 49
S ... dS - Game 50
6 c4
6 0-0 - Game 45
6 . . . i.g7 7 lLlb3
7 ltJe2 Game 44
-

7 . . .lbe 7 8 lLlc3 0-0 9 0-0 lLlbc6 (D) 1 0 .ie2 - Game 43


1 0 ..tgS - Game 42

8 lbc4 5. . . lbe 7 9. . . lbbc6

1 28
CHAPTER SIX I
5 ttJc3 'fiic 7

1 e 4 c5 2 lt:'lf3 e6 3 d 4 cxd4 4 lt:'lxd4 a 6 move. White bolsters the e-pawn and pre
5 lt:'lc3 1kc7 pares to castle. The bishop on d3 is actively
Now we finally move on to 5 lt:Jc3, placed for an eventual kingside attack and
White's second most popular choice after 5 may be liberated by an eventual e4-e5.
i.d3. In this chapter we will study the re
sponse 5 ...'il'c7. This is still Black's main
reply to 5 lt:Jc3, even though in the past
couple of years it's had some stiff competi
tion from S ... bS (mainly because of the sud
den discovery of 5 ... bS 6 i.d3 'il'b6 - see
Chapter 7).
The move 5 ... 'il'c7 immediately puts the
black queen on her normal 'Kan' square,
from where she controls the key eS-square
and eyes events down the c-ftle. The move
is also very flexible; Black commits himself
neither on the queenside nor with his d
pawn. Given Black's reluctance to move the Classical development with 6 i.e2 is also
d-pawn so early, 5 ... 'ii'c7 is also virtually a an accepted choice amongst white players,
necessity so that Black can develop with especially those who play i.e2 systems
...lt:Jf6 (the immediate 5 ...lt:Jf6? would run against the Najdorf, Scheveningen and Tai
into 6 eS!). manov. Acrually Black can transpose into
In this chapter we will consider all of the Taimanov (with 6 ... lt:Jc6) and the
White's main replies to 5 ... 'il'c7. Scheveningen (with 6 ... lt:Jf6 7 0-0 d6) but
1 e4 c5 2 lt:'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:'lxd4 a6 here we will concentrate on pure Kan posi
5 lt:'lc3 1kc7 tions that are reached after 6 ... b5 (see Game
59). I should say a few words about mixing
see following diagram
... b7-b5 with an early ... 'il'c7. Sometimes this
6 d3 can be an extremely risky strategy as Black
6 i.d3 is the most popular and logical can fall dangerously behind on develop-

1 29
Sicilian Ka n

ment. On the other hand, the ... b7-b5 lunge already looking in good shape, Bolzoni
can also be the best way forward as it forces Chuchelov, Brussels 1 995.
White to deal with early pressure against e4. b) 8 .id3 d5! (again this move) 9 exd5
On this occasion (against 6 .ie2) it is fully tt'lxd5 10 tt'lde2 tt'lc6 1 1 0-0 tt'lxe3 12 'iixe3
justified and is the main Line. However, i.e7 1 3 1:.ad1 0-0 14 'iih 3 h6 and White has
when White takes measures to support e4 no real compensation for giving Black the
(with 6 g3 and 6 i.d3 - see below) it is bishop pair, De Silva-Kotsur, Aden 2002.
more risky to play ...b7-b5. 6 . . . lDf6
White players who play g2-g3 systems Developing the king's knight is Black's
against other Sicilians can also play it against most reliable way forward. Given that
the Kan. Now 6 ... .ib4 (or 6...tt'lf6 7 .ig2 White has not 'wasted' a move on c2-c4, it
.ib4) is probably the strongest move to play pays for Black not to fall too far behind in
if one wishes to keep a Kan flavour (see development.
Game 61). On the other hand, here 6 ... b5?! 6 ... tt'lc6 is not your typical Kan move but
is an extremely hazardous response (see it's very playable and quite solid. Now 7
Game 60). One further point I should add .ie3 would transpose directly into the Tai
is that 6 ... tt'lc6, transposing to the g3 Tai manov, but many white players prefer the
manov, is a perfectly viable option. direct 7 tt'lxc6. Now either pawn capture is
Erecting a pawn front with 6 f4 is an playable: Game 58 focuses on 7 ... dxc6 while
other white strategy. As this is hardly a de in Game 57 we look at 7 ... bxc6 (7 ... l\hc6 8
veloping move, Black is justified in playing 0-0 b5 9 e5! looks good for White).
6 ... b5 (see Game 62). 6 ... b5 is extremely risky. Game 56 is a
Before moving on I should just mention graphic illustration of what can happen if
a couple of less important moves for White, Black is not careful.
but ones that are still commonly seen in
practice. With 6 a3?! White's idea is to pre
vent an early ... .ib4 or ... b7-b5-b4. How
ever, this is not really a move that will strike
fear into the Kan player, who will no doubt
be happy to use the extra tempo for devel
opment. Either 6 ... tt'lf6 or 6 ... b5 should be
fine for Black, for example 6 ... b5 7 .id3
.ib7 8 0-0 tt'lf6 and the loss of a tempo
with a2-a3 means that White is in much less
of a position to exploit Black's set-up (com
pare this with 6 .id3 b5).
Also not dangerous is 6 .ie3, trying to
play an 'English Attack' (.ie3, 'iid2, 0-0-0 7 0-0
etc.). This is not particularly effective The automatic move, but there are a
against the Kan: 6 ... .ib4! 7 'iid2 tt'lf6 and couple of interesting sidelines.
now: a) The move 7 'iie 2!? threatens e4-e5 and
a) 8 f3 d5! (when compared with the Black normally avoids this with 7 ... d6.
English attack against the Scheveningen, the However, this rules out the idea of a knight
fact that Black can play ... d7-d5 in one go is disturbing ... i.c5 for Black; the price White
a big bonus) 9 exd5 tt'lxd5 1 0 tt'lde2 tt'lxe3 pays for this is that the queen is committed
1 1 'iixe3 0-0 12 0-0-0 tt'lc6 and Black was to e2. After 8 f4 I Like the idea of 8 ... g6!? 9

1 30
5 fi:J c 3 'il c l

0-0 i.g7 for Black. The point is that a nor


mal plan for White is 'ii'd 1 -e 1 -h4 but now
White would have to lose a vital tempo to
do this. Play may continue 1 0 'it>ht 0-0 and
now:
at) 1 1 lDB lDc6 (t t ...lDbd7!? also looks
reasonable) 12 'ii'f2 b5 1 3 'ir'h4 i.b7 14 f5
14... exf5 (King-Psakhis, Moscow 1 990) and
now King's variation of 1 5 exf5 lDe5!? 16
lDxe5 dxe5 1 7 i.g5 'ir'c6 1 8 'ir'h3 looks okay
for Black, who has useful pressure against
g2.
a2) 1 1 i.d2!? b6 (or 1 1 ...lDc6!?) 1 2 ael
i.b7 13 lDf3 lDbd7 was reasonably com and now:
fortable for Black in T.Bauer-Farago, Hun c1) 8 'it>h 1 !? lDc6 9 lDxc6 bxc6 (9 ... dxc6
gary 1 993. After 14 e5?! dxe5 15 fxe5 lDd5 10 f4 e5 transposes to Game 58) 10 f4 e5 1 1
16 lDxd5 i.xd5 17 i.f4 b5 it's difficult for f5 is probably a bit better for White.
White to do anything without losing his e c2) 8 f4!? i.c5 9 i.e3 lDc6 1 0 lDf5!
pawn. transposes to a precarious line (as far as
b) 7 f4!? is another way to induce ... d7-d6, Black is concerned) of the Taimanov, for
with this method having the advantage of example 1 0 ... lDe7 (or 1 0...'ir'b6 1 1 lDd6+
not committing the queen. Now the obvi 'it>f8 12 i.f2!) 1 1 lDxg7+ 'it>f8 12 i.xc5
ous 7 ... d6 8 0-0 transposes to Game 55. I f 'if'xc5+ 13 'it>h 1 'it>xg7 14 e5 lDe8 1 5 lDe4
Black wants to avoid this h e can try the line 'ir'c7 1 6 'ii'h 5 lDg6 1 7 lDf6 'ii'd 8 1 8 f5 exf5
7 ... b5, answering the critical 8 e5 with 8 ... b4, 1 9 'ii'x f5 d5 20 'ir'g5 and White's attack is
for example 9 lDe4 lDxe4 10 i.xe4 i.b7 1 1 worth more than a piece, Topalov-Hiibner,
'if'B lDc6 1 2 lDxc6 i.xc6 1 3 i.xc6 and Wijk aan Zee 1 996.
now: 8 fi:Jb3
b 1) 1 3. .. 'ir'xc6 1 4 'ir'xc6 dxc6 1 5 'it>e2 White can also protect this knight with 8
0-0-0 16 i.e3 gave White a slight structural i.e3 (see Game 54).
advantage in Shirov-Rublevsky, Polanica 8 i.e7
. . .

Zdroj 1 998. This retreat is played the majority of the


b2) 1 3. ..dxc6! 14 i.e3 i.e7 1 5 0-0-0 0-0 time but there is also something to be said
1 6 h4 c5 1 7 'it>bl c4 was equal in Lanka for 8 ... i.a7. Now we reach positions similar
Volzhin, Koszalin 1 999. to those studied in Chapter 4. White is
7 i.c5
. . . committed to both lDc3 and 0-0, while
Here we once more see the typical theme Black has committed his queen to c7. ECO
of knocking the d4-knight from its central gives 9 'ii'e2 d6 10 i.e3 i.xe3 1 1 'ii'xe3 but
perch. Other black moves include: now 1 1 ...lDc6 12 adl 0-0 transposes to the
a) 7 ... lDc6 8 lDxc6 dxc6 9 f4 e5, which note to White's 1 1 th move in Game 3 1 ,
transposes to Game 58. which is fine for Black. White can attempt
b) 7 ... d6 8 f4 can also arise via the to exploit the absence of a black queen on
Scheveningen (1 e4 c5 2 lDf3 d6 3 d4 cxd4 d8 with 9 i.g5, for example 9 ...lDc6 10 'it>ht
4 lDxd4 lDf6 5 lDc3 e6 6 f4 a6 7 i.d3 'ii'c7 d6 1 1 f4 i.d7 12 i.xf6 gxf6 13 'ir'h5 0-0-0!?
8 0-0) and is studied in Game 55. 14 'ir'xf7 :df8 15 'ir'h5 lDe7 1 6 f5 exf5 1 7
c) 7 ... i.d6!? exf5 i.c6 1 8 i.e4 d 5 1 9 i. f3 hg8 and

131
Sicilian Kan

Black has some compensation for the pawn 7 'W3 'Wb6 8 lLlb3 'Wc7 9 i.d3 Ji.e7 10
in Tischbierek-Eingorn, Ostend 1 992. 0-0).
9 f4 d6 Alternatives to 10 'ti'3 will be discussed
in Games 52-53.
1 o . . lLlbd7
.

Immediate queenside action with


10 ... b5!? is possible but risky: 1 1 e5! Ji.b7 1 2
'Wg3 lLlh5 1 3 'Wh3 g6 1 4 exd6 'ti'xd6 1 5 f5!
exf5 1 6 Ji.h6 was precarious for Black in
Hindle-Emms, Cromer (rapid) 1 993.
Most Kan players tend to prefer to play
systems with ... lLlbd7, so I will concentrate
my efforts on that. However, the alternative
way with 1 0 ... lLlc6 is certainly also possible.
Play continues 1 1 Ji.d2 b5!? and now:
a) 12 e5!? (a direct attempt at refutation)
We've reached another typical Scheve 1 2... dxe5 1 3 fxe5 'Wa7+! 1 4 i.e3 lLlxe5 1 5
ningen-style Kan position. Move orders, 'Wg3 ifb8 1 6 Ji.f4 'Wa7+ ( 1 6...lLlh5 17
ideas and tactics will be discussed in Games i.xe5 lLlxg3 1 8 Jixb8 lLlxfl 1 9 i.f4 traps
5 1 -53. the knight) 1 7 Ji.e3 'ti'b8 1 8 Ji.f4 was agreed
r------. drawn in Werle-Brodsky, Hoogeveen 1 999.
Game 5 1 b) Naturally White can also build up the
Goloshchapov-Kobalija attack more slowly, for example 1 2 l1ae 1 .
Ekaterinburg 1 999 1 1 ..td2
The bishop is better placed on d2 than it
1 e4 c5 2 lLlfJ e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6 is on e3 as now the e-ftle will not be
5 lLlcJ '*kc7 6 ..tdJ lLlf6 7 0-0 ..tc5 8 blocked after l:tae 1 . Alternatives are:
lLlbJ ..te7 9 f4 d6 1 0 '*ifJ a) 1 1 g4!? (trying to take advantage of the
fact that the d7 -square is not available for
the f6-knight) and now:
al) 1 1 ...g5? 12 fxg5? lLle5 1 3 'Wf4 lLlfd7
is unclear but 1 2 e5! dxe5 13 fxg5 is winning
for White.
a2) 1 1 ...lLlc5 1 2 lLlxc5 'ti'xc5+ 1 3 Ji.e3
ifc7 14 g5 lLld7 1 5 Ji.d4 0-0 16 'Wh5 and
113-h3 is corning very quickly. 1 6 ... 11e8 1 7
11 3 g6? 1 8 'Wxh7+! is a trick worth remem
bering.
a3) 1 1 ...h6! 1 2 h4 (12 e5? dxe5 1 3 g5
hxg5 1 4 fxg5 e4! hits h2) 12 ...g6 13 g5 hxg5
14 hxg5 lLlh5 1 5 i.e3 b6 16 e5!? i.b7 1 7
White activates the queen, which can exd6 .tx3!? ( 1 7. . .i.xd6 also looks okay) 1 8
now take up useful posts on g3 and h3. dxc7 i. b7 1 9 i.e4 i.xe4 20 lLlxe4 llc8 2 1
Note that this position can also be reached l:tadl llxc7 was equal in Hjartarson-Agrest,
via a Scheveningen Sicilian (1 e4 c5 2 lLl3 Stockholm 1 996.
d6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 lLlf6 5 lLlc3 e6 6 f4 a6 b) 1 1 a4 (preventing ... b7-b5 for a long

1 32
5 4:J c 3 1i c 7

time, but expending a tempo to do so)


1 1 ... b6 (this is an almost automatic response
to a2-a4; otherwise White will cramp the
queenside with a4-a5!) 1 2 i.d2 i.b7 1 3
l:!.ae1 0-0

11 . . .b5
When I ftrst began playing these lines as
Black I was under the impression that this
move was risky here due to 1 2 a4, but now
I've looked at it again I think Black has
and now: enough resources.
b1) 14 'iig 3?! dS 1 5 exdS (or 1 5 eS tt::'le4!) 1 1 ...b6!?, avoiding a clash with a2-a4, is
1 5 ... tt::'lx d5 1 6 tt::'lx dS i.xdS 1 7 'iih3 fS! 1 8 the more restrained way to ftanchetto.
Wh1 i.f6 and Black was slightly better, White can reply with:
Howell-Emms, Cappelle Ia Grande 1 994. a) 1 2 l:tae1 i.b7 1 3 'iih 3 eS!? (13 ... 0-0?
b2) 14 'iih 3! .l:tad8! 1 5 g4! (1 5 eS?! dxeS 1 4 eS dxeS 1 5 fxeS tt::'lx eS 1 6 i.f4 i.d6 1 7
16 fxeS tt::'lx eS 1 7 .l:txeS 'iixeS 1 8 lhf6 i.xeS i.xeS 1 8 lhf6 wins for White, but
.:txd3! wins for Black; this is the point be Black could prepare castling with
hind 14 ... .l:tad8) with a further split: 1 3 ....l:tad8!? - remember ....l:txd3! ideas) 1 4
b21) 1 5 ... d5!? 1 6 exdS ..icS+ 1 7 tt::'lx cS! W h1 0-0 1 5 lt:JdS ..ixdS 1 6 exdS .:tfeB 1 7
(17 i.e3 exdS 1 8 gS tt::'le4 1 9 tt::'lxcS lt:JdxcS fxeS dxeS 1 8 c4 a S was roughly level in
20 ..id4 was unclear in Tischbierek Tiviakov-Kudrin, Beijing 1 998.
Bischoff, Hanover 1 991) 1 7 ... tt::'lxc5 1 8 dxe6 b) 12 'iig3 (putting immediate pressure
'iic 6!? (Zeller; 1 8 .. .fxe6 1 9 gS tt::'lxd3 20 on g7) with a further split:
cxd3, as in Saravanan-Emms, British Ch. b1) 1 2 ... 0-0!? 13 .l:tae1 i.b7 14 eS looks
2002, looks better for White) 19 .l:te2! (19 e7 dangerous for Black, for example 14 ... tt::'ld 5
tt::'lxd3 20 exf8'ii + WxfB 21 cxd3 l:hd3! 22 15 fS!? exfS 16 i.h6 g6 17 i.xf8 i.xf8 1 8
i.e3 tt::'lxg4 23 'ii 3 'iix 3 24 .l:r.x3 i.x3 25 tt::'lx dS i.xdS 1 9 i.xfS tt::'lx eS 2 0 c 3 and
i.xb6 miraculously leads to a level ending) Black has insufficient compensation for the
1 9 ... fxe6 20 gS tt::'lx d3 21 cxd3 lt:JdS 22 exchange.
'iix e6+ 'iix e6 23 .l:txe6 and White has the b2) 1 2 ... g6 1 3 l:!.ae1 (13 eS tt::'lh S 4 'it'f3
better ending. But 1 9 ... 1:fe8 (instead of i.b7 15 exd6 i.xd6 16 i.e4 0-0-0! 1 7
1 9 ... fxe6) looks interesting, for example 20 i.xb7+ 'iixb7 1 8 tt::'le4 i.e7 was unclear in
gS tt::'lxd3 21 cxd3 l:!.xe6!. Akopian-Kamsky, Palma de Mallorca 1 989)
b22) 1 5 ... tt::'lc 5!? may be playable: 16 eS 1 3 ... i.b7 and now:
dxeS 17 fxeS tt::'lxd3 1 8 exf6 tt::'lxe 1 1 9 fxe 7 b21) 1 4 'iih 3 bS 1 5 fS?! (White should
'iixe7 20 .:txe1 eS is unclear, as is 1 6 tt::'lxcS wait for Black to castle before doing this)
'iix cS+ 17 ..ie3 'iib 4!. 1 5 ...gxf5! 1 6 exfS eS 1 7 .l:tf2 .l:tgB and Black

1 33
Sicilian Ka n

has good counterplay, Tilak-Emms, London


1 994.
b22) 14 a4 h6?! (this only weakens the
kingside; 14 ... 0-0! 1 S fS tt:leS is similar to the
main game)

1 3 . . . g6
Killing the threat to the g-pawn and pre
paring a possible ... tt:\hS in answer to e4-eS.
Black's alternatives are:
a) 1 3 ... b4!? 14 tt:ld1 g6 1 S 'Wh3 lDcS 1 6
1 S eS! tt:\hS 1 6 'W2 dxeS 1 7 fxeS tt:lxeS tt:lxcS 'WxcS+ 1 7 h1 d S 1 8 .ie3 'WaS 1 9
18 tt:lbS! axbS 19 i.xbS+ tt:ld7 20 'Wxf7 + eS tt:\e4 20 i.d4 was perhaps a bit better for
d8 21 'Wxe6 was very good for White, White in Hendriks-Kveinys, Mi.inster 1 993,
Stojanovski-Chuchelov, European Champi but I don't see what's wrong with 1 4 ... 0-0.
onship, Ohrid 200 1 . b) 13 ... 0-0 14 eS! tt:ldS 1 S tt:laS! (Ribli)
1 2 .l:!.ae 1 looks quite strong, for example 1 S ...dxeS (or
So what happens if White plays 1 2 a4 1 S ... 'WxaS? 1 6 tt:lxdS 'Wd8 1 7 tt:lxe7+ 'Wxe7
here? Black plays 1 2 ... b4 and now: 1 8 i.b4 tt:lcS 1 9 fS!) 1 6 tt:lxb7 'Wxb7 1 7
a) 1 3 tt:la2?! aS and White must remem fxeS, while 1 S fS also looks promising.
ber that 14 c3? fails to 14 ... bxc3 1 S tt:lxc3 1 4 a3
'Wb6 +!. So we have 14 h1 0-0 1 S c3 and
now I believe Black is fine after 14 ... tt:lcS!?
( 1 S ... bxc3 16 tt:lxc3 i.b7 17 tt:lbS 'Wd8 also
looks playable), for example 1 6 tt:lxcS dxcS
17 eS i.b7 18 'Wh3? tt:le4! 1 9 %:tae1 %:tad8!
20 :xe4 l:txd3 21 'Wxd3 l:td8! and Black is
better.
b) 13 tt:ld1 (this looks stronger) 1 3 ...aS 1 4
h 1 i.b7 1 S tt:\2 0-0 1 6 c3 bxc3 1 7 i.xc3
dS 1 8 eS d4 19 i.xaS l:haS 20 'Wh3 l:tdS!
was unclear in Van Haastert-Emms, Gent
2002.
1 2 'Wg3 g6 13 l:tae1 (1 3 eS!?, as in
Akopian-Kamsky above, is also possible) Of course, 14 fS? is just a blunder:
1 3 ... i.b7 transposes to the main game. 14 ...gxfS 1 S exfS l:tg8! and White loses
1 2 i.b7 1 3 'i'g3
. . . down the g-flle . So White makes a useful
Now White has ideas of both 'Wxg7 and move and waits for Black to castle. 14 eS is
e4-eS. also possible though: 14 ... tt:lhS 1 S 'W2 0-0

1 34
5 l'i:J c 3 'ii c 7

1 6 exd6 .ixd6 1 7 tDe4 i.e? leads to a i.c5 + 24 'iii>h 1 i.d7


roughly level position.
1 4 . . . 0-0

Now if Black is able to consolidate with


... 8 then the bishop pair would prove an
1 5 f5 advantage, so White takes the perperual
Now 15 e5 is well met by either 15 ... tDd5 check on offer.
or 1 5 ... tDh5!?. White changes the direction 25 'iff7 + 'iii>h 8 26 'iff6 + % - %
of the attack slightly, aiming to put pressure
on the e6-pawn. Game 52
1 5 . . .l'i:Je5 Nagatz-Dautov
Grabbing the e5-square is the safest re Bad Lauterberg 199 1
sponse. The alternative for Black is to open
the long diagonal with 1 5 ... exf5!? 16 exf5 1 e4 c5 2 l'i:Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 l'i:Jxd4 a6
and only then 1 6... tbe5. Of course, this also 5 l'i:Jc3 'ifc7 6 i.d3 l'i:Jf6 7 0-0 i.c5 8
opens lines for White as well as for Black. l'i:Jb3 i.e7 9 f4 d6 1 0 'ife2
1 6 fxe6 Going for the 1i'e2, .id2, ael and e4-
16 .ih6 feB and only then 17 fxe6 fxe6 e5 plan.
18 tbd4 is another possibility, but then 1 o . .l'i:Jbd7
.

18 ...tDfg4 seems to hold the balance, for Of course, 10 ... tDc6 is once again possi
example 1 9 tDxe6? 1i'd7 and White has two ble. This move does block the bishop on b7
pieces en prise. but it also has its positive points. One ad
1 6 . . .fxe6 1 7 l'i:Jd4 vantage it has over 10 ... tDbd7 is that it
Bringing the knight back into the game makes the d7 -square available for the f6-
by attacking e6. 1 7 1i'h3?! lDfg4! would sud knight and this might be especially useful
denly give White some problems down the against both e4-e5 and g2-g4-g5 plans. Play
a7-g1 diagonal. continues 1 1 .id2 b5 1 2 act .ib7 and
1 7 . . . i.c8 now:
A strange-looking retreat, but this posi a) 1 3 e5!? dxe5 14 fxe5 lDd7 1 5 .if4
tion seems okay for Black. He has a nice i.h4!? 1 6 g3 i.e? 1 7 lDd5 1i'd8 1 8 tbxe7
knight on e5 and would stand well after tbxe7 was unclear in S.Petrosian-Schar
... .id7. So White needs to do something gorodskij, Gelsenkirchen 200 1 .
quickly. b) 1 3 a 3 0-0 with a further split:
1 8 l'i:Jf3 l'i:Jh5 1 9 'ifh3 l'i:Jf4 20 i.xf4 :xt4 bt) 1 4 e5 dxe5 1 5 fxe5 tbd7 16 i.f4 b4
2 1 l'i:Jxe5 :xt1 + 22 :xt1 dxe5 23 'iff3 17 axb4 (17 lDd5? exd5 1 8 e6 1i'd8 1 9 exd7

1 35
Sicilian Kan

'ifxd7 20 axb4 .ixb4 leaves Black a pawn a1) 13 ...lLlcS 1 4 lLlxcS 'ifxcS+ 1 S lD2 eS
ahead) 1 7...lLlxb4 1 8 .ie4 .ixe4 1 9 'ifxe4 1 6 cJ;h 1 i.d7 17 c3 bxc3 1 8 .ixc3 exf4 19
lLlb6 20 lLld2 'ifc6! and White has problems .ixa6 0-0 was perhaps a bit better for
with his c2-pawn, Dueball-Chuchelov, White, Kodric-Illijin, Bled 2000.
Netherlands 1 998. a2) 1 3 ... i.b7 14 eS dxeS 1 S fxeS tLldS 1 6
b2) 1 4 fS .U.ae8! (preparing to support the h1 lLlcS 1 7 lLlxcS .ixcS 1 8 lD2 .id4 was
e6-pawn) lS fxe6 fxe6 16 .ie3 lLleS 1 7 lbd4 unclear in Garcia Martinez-Korneev, Mala
.idS 18 h3 'ifd7 1 9 lLlf3 lLlg6 with equality, ga 2002.
Khalifman-C.Hansen, Aarhus 1 998. b) 12 a4!? (again striking early on the
1 1 .td2 queenside) 1 2... b4 1 3 lLld1 (13 lLla2 aS 1 4
'iti>h 1 0-0 1 S c 3 lLlcS! looks okay for Black)
1 3 ... aS 14 lD2 (but not 14 c3?! bxc3 1 S
lLlxc3?? 'it'b6+!) 1 4... 0-0 1 S c 3 bxc3 1 6
i.xc3

1 1 . . . b5
Barua-Goloshchapov, Calcutta 2002 con
tinued instead with 1 1 ...b6 1 2 l:tael .ib7
and now, instead of Barna's 13 a4, critical
must be 1 3 eS!?: This looks a bit better for White - the
a) 13 ...dxeS 1 4 fxeS lLldS 1S lLlxdS .ixdS aS-pawn is a weakness and the bS-square
1 6 'ifhS (Ribli) 1 6 ... g6 1 7 'ifh6 looks prom could also prove to be a useful outpost for
ising for White. White.
b) 1 3 ... lLldS 1 4 exd6 i.xd6 1 S fS .ixh2+ 1 2 . . . .tb7 1 3 l:tae1 0-0
(maybe 1 S ... lLlxc3 1 6 i.xc3 eS!?) 16 cJ;h1 13 ... eS!? suggests itself as a possible way
i.eS 17 fxe6 fxe6 1 8 lbd4 (Ribli) and again to prevent e4-eS. Notice that this move is
Black is under a lot of pressure. These varia usually stronger here than in Maroczy Bind
tions should be compared to those in Game positions as White has less control over dS.
40, where Black has the extra ...g7 -g6 Following 1 4 fS 0-0 Black can arrange to
thrown in. play ... d6-dS himself. Instead 1 4 'iti>h1 0-0 1 S
1 2 a3 fxeS lLlxeS 1 6 lLld4 g6 1 7 i.gS lLlfg4 1 8
Eliminating all lines with ...bS-b4, but i.f4 l:.fe8 was okay for Black in Jovanovic
both White's alternatives are apparently Pavasovic, Pula 2000.
more critical. 1 4 g4!?
a) 1 2 l:tael b4 (12 ... .ib7 1 3 eS lLldS leads One of the most aggressive plans avail
to very similar lines to the previous note; able to White - g4-gS is a real positional
12 ... eS!? is another way of preventing e4-eS) threat. However, it seems that in this case
13 lLld 1 and now: Black is well placed to meet this idea.

136
5 l0 c 3 'ii c 7

1 8 . . . !Oxd3 1 9 cxd3 d5!

Alternative ways to attack include:


a) 14 fS tt::le S! 1 S fxe6 fxe6 1 6 tt::ld 4 lid7 Black counter-attacks in the centre and
and Black, who has a nice knight on eS, is it's suddenly clear who's in control. That
doing well. knight on f8 does a sterling defensive job.
b) 1 4 eS!? (this move always has to be 20 f5 exf5 21 exf5 d6 22 l:!.f1 d4! 23
considered) and now: l0e4 i.xe4 24 dxe4 'ilfc2 25 l:!.e 1 d3! 26
b1) 1 4... dxeS 1 S fxeS tt::ld S 1 6 tt::lx dS i.xdS c3 'ii'x b3 27 xg7 xg7 28 f6 + g8
17 i.f4 and White has a potentially lethal 29 'ii'h 5 d2 30 l:.d 1 c5 + 31 h 1 'ilfc4
attack with lihS and lle3. 0-1
b2) 14 ... tt::ld S!, keeping the f-ft!e and the
c 1 -h6 diagonal closed, is a more solid way Game 53
to play. Acs-Fancsy
1 4 . . .!0c5! Zalakaros 1 997
It's crucial that Black frees the natural re
treat for the f6-knight - that d7-square. 1 e4 c5 2 !Of3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 !Oxd4 a6
1 5 g5 !Ofd7 1 6 .U.f3 5 !Oc3 'ii'c7 6 i.d3 !Of6 7 0-0 i.c5 8
Logical play; White intends .l:lh3 and tt:lb3 i.e7 9 f4 d6 1 0 a4!?
lihS. The immediate 1 6 lihS?! is less effec A very tricky move. At ftrst it seems as
tive: 16 . . .g6! 17 lih6 llfe8 1 8 l:.f3 i.f8 19 though White is simply taking prophylactic
lih4 i.g7 20 llh3 tt::l f8! and with the knight measures on the queenside, but this is not
on f8 and bishop on g7, Black has what's the case.
acknowledged by Sicilian players as the per 1 0 . . . b6
fect defensive set-up. Black responds in the normal manner but
1 6 . . J:tfe8 here it is more perilous than normal. Both
So that the knight can defend h7 from f8. 10 ... tt::lc6 and 10 ... tt::lbd7 avoid an early con
1 7 l:!.h3 !Of8?! flict in the centre but do nothing to prevent
17 ... tt::lx d3! 1 8 cxd3 tt::lf8 is a more accu 1 1 aS, when White has a bind on the queen
rate move order. side and Black will find it difficult to reach a
1 8 'ii'g4? desired set-up. Interesting, though, is the
1 8 tt::lx cS! dxcS (18 ... lixcS+ 19 i.e3 lic7 sequence 1 1 aS tt::ld 7!? 1 2 i.e3 tt::lc S, trying
20 lihS gives a dangerous attack) 19 eS to put pressure on the aS-pawn.
(threatening i.xh7 +) 19 ... g6 20 i.e4 looks 1 1 e5!
like a better way for \Vhite to play. The insertion of a2-a4 and ...b7-b6 makes

137
Sicilian Kan

this a very dangerous move. In particular; 1 4 . . . exf5!


Black has to watch out for tactics along the The only move. Take it from someone
h 1 -a8 diagonal. who's been through the experience; 14 ... e5?
1 S 'if'g4!, as in Sulskis-Emms, Gausdal 1 995,
is truly awful for Black!
1 5 f4 l2'le5 1 6 l2'lc3
1 6 lLlg3! looks strong, for example 16 ... g6
1 7 xfS! gxfS 1 8 'if'dS f6 1 9 xeS! (but not
19 'if'xa8? b7!) 1 9 .. .fxeS 20 lLlxfS xfS 21
.l:.xfS and White's attack is worth more than
the extra piece.
1 6 . . . 0-0!
The best, as is seen by the alternatives:
a) 1 6...d6?! 17 bS+! axbS 18 lLlxbS
cS+ 19 ..ti>h 1 'if'c6 20 xeS 0-0 21 lLlxcS
bxcS and White has a clear advantage.
1 1 . . .l2'lfd7 b) 16...e6? 1 7 xfS! (1 7 bS+? axbS
1 1 ...dxeS 12 fxeS increases the danger for 1 8 lLlxbS 'if'c4 19 xeS 0-0 was unclear in
Black: Emms-Lund, England 1 997) 1 7...xfS 1 8
a) 12 .. .'ii'xe S? 13 f4 'if'hS 14 e2 'if'h4 xeS! 'fixeS 1 9 :et and lLldS will be devas
1 S g3 'figS 16 f3 and White wins. tating.
b) 1 2...lLlfd7 1 3 f4! (13 'if'f3 lLlxeS! 1 4 1 7 l2'ld5 c5 + 1 8 'it>h 1 'i!fb7 1 9 .i.e2
'if'xa8 b7 1 S bS+ axbS 1 6 'if'a7 is un l2'lbc6 20 1fe1 e6 21 c4 llad8 22 l:l.d 1
clear) 13 ... lt::lc 6 14 'iig4 looks like a very 'it>h8 23 1fc3 f6 24 l2'lxc5 bxc5 25 .i.e3
promising position for White.
1 2 exd6 .i.xd6 1 3 l2'le4 e7
Black enters the complications. 13 ... b7
14 lLlxd6+ 'if'xd6 1 S e3 is a comfortable
two bishops edge for White.

Black has survived the opening and still


has that extra pawn. However, the position
is still very unclear due to Black's weak
pawns on cS and fS.
25 . . . 1fa7 26 l:td2 l:tfe8 27 l:tfd1 l:td7 28
1 4 f5! h3 f4?! 29 .i.xf4 l2'ld4 30 h5 l:tb8? 3 1
It seems only natural to open up the po b4! xd5 3 2 cxd5 lbd5 3 3 bxc5 l2'lec6
sition even more while Black is struggling to 34 xb8 'ilfxb8 35 f3 l2'lxf3 36 'ilfxf3
coordinate his forces. 1 -0

1 38
5 ttJ c 3 ik c 7

.ixe3 1 2 xe3 0-0 1 3 .:.ae1 .ib7 1 4 'iVg3


Game 54 nfeS 1 5 f4 e5!
Hanoman-Hellsten
Stockholm 1996

1 e4 c5 2 ttJt3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ttJxd4 a6


5 ..td3 ttJt6 6 0-0 ikc7 7 ttJc3 ..tcs 8
.tel
At first sight this looks like the most
natural way to continue. By protecting the
knight with a developing move, White man
ages to keep it in the middle of the board
where the action is. The problem, however,
is that White will find it very difficult to
make any progress without at some point
offering the exchange of dark-squared bish The e4-e5 break is prevented forever.
ops (probably with lbb3) and that consid Again the ... e6-e5 push is perfectly justified
erably eases Black's task. In fact, after an as Black remains in control of the crucial
exchange on e3 Black is effectively a tempo d5-squarc. Note that the elimination of
up on 5 .id3 i.c5 variations as he hasn't dark-squared bishops helps Black. I f we
wasted a move with ... .ic5-a7. inserted a white bishop on d2 and a Black
one on e7 Black would be slightly more
cramped. The game continued 1 6 f5 lLlcS
1 7 ne3 :adS 1 S h4 h6 1 9 .l::.g3 'it f8! 20
nm e7 21 nh3 d5! (the thematic central
break; White now finds his major pieces arc
offside) 22 exd5 e4 23 .:.e3 lbxb3 24 cxb3
'ir'c5 25 i.c4 lLlxd5 26 lLlxdS .ixd5 27
.ixd5 nxd5 2S f6 nd1 + 29 'it2 f5 + 30
'itg3 e5+ 3 1 f4 xf4+ 32 'itxf4 nn +
33 'it>g4 l:!.xf6 and Black eventually won the
ending.

8 d6
. . .

Sensibly defending the bishop on c5. The


line S ... b5?! 9 lbdxb5! axb5 10 lLlxb5 'it'e5
1 1 i.xc5 'iVxc5 1 2 b4! b6 13 e5 lbd5 1 4
lbd6+ 'ite7 1 5 'iVh5 g6 1 6 .ixg6! gave
White a winning attack in lvanchuk
J.Polgar, Monaco (rapid) 1 994, while
S ... lbc6? is met very strongly by 9 lbdb5!.
9 ike2 !tJbd7 1 0 f4
Another example of perfect black strat
egy can be seen in the game Motwani-
Bischoff, Groningen 1 990: 10 a4 b6 1 1 lLlb3 1O . . . b5 1 1 !tJb3

1 39
Sicilian Kan

It's difficult to suggest anything else. castle first: 8 .....te7 9 h1 (with the knight
White can hardly hope to achieve the e4-e5 on d4 it's worth playing this to avoid ... 'i!ib6
break with his bishop blocking the e-ftle. ideas) 9 ... 0-0 10 'ilie2 (this isn't the only
1 1 . . . i.xe3 + 1 2 tt'xe3 0-0 plan) 1 0 ... ltJbd7 1 1 i.d2 and now:
Black has a perfectly comfortable posi a) 1 1 ...e8 12 aet ltJf8 1 3 e5 ltJ6d7
tion and in fact it's White who should be
thinking about equalising.
1 3 h3?! e5! 1 4 .U.ae1 i.b7 1 5 a3 .l:f.fe8
1 6 f5 l:taca 1 7 l:tf2 d5!
Model strategy. Black achieves his aim
with this central push and now takes over
the initiative. The end is now surprisingly
swift.

14 ltJd5! 'ilid8 (14 ... exd5 1 5 exd6 'ilixd6


1 6 ltJf5 'ilie6 17 'ili3 'ilif6 18 i.c3 wins) 1 5
ltJxe7+ 'ilixe7 1 6 exd6 'ilixd6 1 7 ltJf5 'ilic7
1 8 ..tc3 f6 1 9 'ilih5 'illd8 20 ltJxg7! xg7 21
e3 ltJg6 22 .U.h3 ltJdf8 23 i.xg6 hxg6 24
'ilih8+ f7 25 h7+! ltJxh7 26 'ilixh7+
f8 27 ..tb4+ 'ilie7 28 i.xe7+ xe7 29
'ilihB+ f7 30 d1 1 -0 Manduch-Perman,
1 8 lDxd5 i.xd5 1 9 exd5 e4! 20 .if 1 correspondence 1 987.
lDxd5 21 tt'd4 lD7f6 22 .l:f.fe2 e3 23 c3 b) 1 1 . . .b5 12 ae1 i.b7 1 3 e5!? (13 f3
.l:te4 24 tt'd 1 tt'g3 25 tt'c 1 .l:f.ce8 26 lDd4 with the idea of h3 also looks encouraging
lbt4 0-1 for White - the knight on d4 dissuades
Black from playing ...e6-e5) 1 3. .. ltJd5 and
Game 55 now:
Pikula-Cvitan b1) 14 'ilih5 g6 1 5 'ilih6 dxe5 1 6 ..txg6
Bie/ 1 996 (or 1 6 fxe5 ltJxe5 1 7 ltJxd5 ..txd5 1 8 i.c3
f6 and White couldn't find a good way to
1 e4 c5 2 lDf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lDxd4 a6 continue, Siklosi-Hubig, St Ingbert 1 987)
5 lDc3 tt'c7 6 i.d3 lDf6 7 0-0 d6 a f4 1 6 ...hxg6 1 7 lLlxe6 fxe6 1 8 'ilixg6+ h8
This position very often occurs via the looks like nothing more than a perpetual
Scheveningen move order 1 e4 c5 2 ltJ3 d6 check.
3 d4 cxd4 4 ltJxd4 ltJf6 5 lLlc3 e6 6 f4 a6 7 b2) 14 f5!? ltJxc3 1 5 ..txc3 ltJxe5
..td3 'ilic7 8 0-0. (15 ... dxe5? 16 fxe6 exd4 17 ..txh7+! wins)
a . . . b5 1 6 fxe6 looked better for White in Malevin
Black develops his queenside to reach the sky-Dragomarezkij, Kuibyshev 1 98 1 .
ideal defensive set-up before castling. White The variation 8 ... ltJbd7 9 h 1 b 5 1 0 'ilie2
also has to be on alert for ... b5-b4 ideas. i.b7 is an often-used move order to reach
Black's main alternative is to prepare to the text.

140
5 tiJ c 3 'i!t' c 7

9 'it>h 1 b7 a) 1 2 l:tael b4! (12...0-0 transposes to the


It's important to achieve some control note 'b' to Black's 8th move) 1 3 lLia4 (I
over the long diagonal as soon as possible. prefer 1 3 lLid 1) 1 3 ... lLic5 14 lLixc5 dxc5 1 5
The careless 9 ... i..e 7? runs into 10 e5! and lLJb3 c4! 1 6 i..xc4 lLixe4 1 7 f5 exf5 1 8 .l:.xf5
now: 0-0 and Black had no problems in Dvoirys
a) 1 0 .. .'Jd5 1 1 lLJxd5 exd5 1 2 e6 was aw Ribli, Bundesliga 1 992.
ful for Black in Lau-Lutz, Graz 1 993. b) 12 a3 (this looks sensible) 12 ... 0-0 1 3
b) 10 ... lLJfd7 and now Ftacnik's 1 1 i..e4 llacl and now I think Black's strongest
d5 (1 1 ...i..b 7? 1 2 exd6 i..xd6 1 3 lLidxb5!) 1 2 move is 1 3 ... l:.ad8!, preventing 14 e5 on
i..x d5!? exd5 1 3 lLixd5 'iic 5 1 4 lLib3 'iic4 1 5 account of 14 e5? dxe5 1 5 fxe5 'ifxe5! 1 6
lLia5 looks very favourable for White. 'ifxe5 lLixe5 and the knight o n d 4 hangs.
c) 1 0 ... dxe5 1 1 fxe5 and now: Instead, I believe that White should gradu
cl) 1 1 ...lLifd7 1 2 1Wf3 0-0 1 3 'iih 3 (1 3 ally build up a kingside attack with 1 4 l:tf3.
'ifxa8?? i.. b7 1 4 'ifa7 i.xg2+) 1 3 ... h6 14 1 2 . . . 0-0
lLixe6 and White wins. 12 ... lLib6 13 a4 bxa4 14 b5!? axb5 1 5
c2 1 1 ...'iix e5 12 i.. f4 with a further split: i.xb5+ lLibd7 1 6 e 5 dxe5 1 7 fxe5 lLJd5 1 8
c21) 1 2 ... 1Wh5 13 i..e2 'iic 5 (or 13 ... 1Wg6 lLixd5 i..x d5 1 9 c4 i..b7 20 'iig4 'ifxe5 was
1 4 i.. f3) 1 4 i.. f3 lLJd5 1 5 lLJxd5 exd5 1 6 very unclear in Kupreichik-Akesson, Berlin
lLJb3 'ifb6 1 7 i..x d5 i..b7 1 8 i..x f7+! 'ifi>xf7 1 987, but the simple 14 lLixa4 looks like an
19 i..c 7+ and White wins. edge for White.
c22) 1 2...1Wc5 1 3 \Wf3 1Wa7 (or 1 3 ... lLid5 1 3 a4 bxa4 1 4 .l::txa4 tiJb6 1 5 .l:.aa 1
1 4 lLJb3 'ifc6 1 5 i..xb8 llxb8 1 6 'ifxf7+) 1 4 Also possible is 1 5 l:ta5 llfc8 1 6 e5
i..e 3! 'ifb7 ( 1 4. . .i..b7 1 5 i..e4!) 1 5 i..e4 (Rohl-Bologan, New York 1 998) and now
lLixe4 1 6 'ifxf7+ 'it>d8 1 7 llad1 and Black Rohl gives 1 6 ... lLJfd5! 1 7 lLJxd5 i..x d5 1 8
cannot hope to survive. llxa6 llxa6 1 9 i..xa6 i.c4! and Black has
1 0 'i!t'e2 tiJbd7 1 1 d2 e7 1 2 b4! ? some compensation for the pawn.
1 5 . . . d5!?
15 ...g6 1 6 i..xa6 llxa6 1 7 llxa6 e5 18
lLib3 i..xa6 1 9 'ifxa6 exf4 20 llxf4 llc8 21
'iffl ! left White a pawn ahead in the game
Short-Seirawan, Arnhem 1 983.
1 6 e5

This i s perhaps not the ftrst move that


comes to mind but, despite weakening the
queenside (in particular the c-ftle), it does
have its merits. For a start ... b5-b4 is ruled
out of the equation, while White prepares to
attack on the queenside himself with a2-a4.
Other ways to continue include: 1 6 . . . tiJe4!

14 1
Sicilian Ka n

A necessary pawn sacrifice changes the However, 8 ... c5! looks stronger. After 9
complexion of the game. 1 6 ...lLlfd7? allows lLlb3 d6 we transpose to note 'a' to
White to unleash a mating attack with 1 7 White's 9th move in Game 67.
i.xh7+! (Cebalo) 1 7...'it>xh7 1 8 'iVh5+ 'it>g8 b) 8 'iVe2 will probably lead into a trans
1 9 l:!.f3, for example 1 9 ... f6 20 l:!.g3! (Black's position to Game 55 after B .. b 7 9 'it>h 1 (9
.

problem is that he cannot defend e6) e5!?) e7 10 f4 d6 or 8... d6 9 f4 b7 1 0


20 ... l:!.f7 21 l:th3 l:tff8 22 lLlxe6 'iVc6 23 h l .
lLld4 'iVc7 24 e6 and White wins. c) 8 e5!?
1 7 lLlxe4 dxe4 1 8 ..txe4 ..txe4 1 9 'ii'xe4
'iifc4 20 c3 lLld5 21 l:.f3 l:.ac8
White is a pawn ahead but it will be very
difficult to exploit this due to the bind that
Black has on the queenside. I would say that
Black has just enough play for the pawn to
keep the balance.
22 h4 l:lfd8 23 l:ld3 g6 24 h5 ..tf8 25
l:.e1 lLle7 26 g4 lLlc6 27 ..te3 l:.d5 28
l:.ed1 a 5 29 bxa5 l:.xa5 30 'ii'f3 l:ld5 31
g5 lLle7 32 ..tf2 l:lcd8 33 lt>g2 lLlf5 34
hxg6 hxg6 35 'ii'h 3 lLlg7 36 J:!.h 1 lLlh5
37 l:!.f3 l:la5 38 'ii'g4 l:.da8?
This allows White a very strong counter (a brutal attempt at a refutation, but...)
sacrifice. 38 ... l:td7 is best. 8...'iVxe5 9 'iVf3 d5 (9 ... d6? 1 0 g3 l:!.a7 1 1
39 l:lxh5! gxh5 40 'it'xh5 .tta 1 41 g6 lLlf5 exf5 1 2 f4 'iVc5 1 3 xd6 'iVxd6 1 4
'ii'f 1 + 42 lt>g3 fxg6 43 'ii'x g6 + ..tg7 44 'iVe3+ was winning for White in Navarro
'ii'xe6 + lt>h7 45 'ii'f 5 + lt>g8 46 lLle6 Urday Caceres, Merida 1 997) 10 lLlfS!? and
l:.8a6 47 l:.d3 l:.d 1 48 l:.xd1 'ii'xd 1 49 now:
lLlg5 1 -0 c1) 10 ... 'iVc7 (Mikhalevski-Finkel, I srael
1 997) and now Mikhalevski suggests 1 1 l:!.e 1
Game 56 and 1 1 i.f4, both of which look very dan
Widenmann-Andersen gerous.
Com.rpondence 1985 c2) 10 ... exf5 1 1 f4. Now Mikhalevski
gives the winning line 1 1 ...'ii'e 6? 1 2 l:!.ae1
1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6 lLle4 13 lLlxe4 fxe4 14 .ixe4 dxe4 1 5 l:txe4
5 lLlc3 'Wc7 6 ..td3 b5 but I can't find anything obvious for White
Black has to be wary of playing both after 1 1 ...'iVe7!, planning ... e6.
... 'iVc7 and ... b 7-b5 very early on, especially 8 .tte 1 !
when White develops very quickly, as in this I believe that in this variation White
game. should forget about playing f2-f4 and con
7 0-0 ..tb7 centrate instead on piece play, hoping to
7 ... lLlf6!? may well be Black's best move cash in on his obvious development advan
here: tage.
a) 8 l:te 1 d6 9 a4 b4 1 0 lLla2 looks good 8 . . . d6
for White, for example 1 0... d5? 1 1 exd5 Black has a multitude of alternatives but
lLlxd5 12 e4 b7 13 lLlxe6! and White nothing totally convincing:
Wins, Brustkern-Buech, Germany 1 997. a) 8 ... lLlf6 9 e5 lLld5 and now both 1 0

1 42
5 li:J c 3 'ii c 7

d2 lDxc3 1 1 xc3 lDc6 1 2 lDxc6 xc6 now Kindermann gives 1 1 1i'h5! with the
1 3 1i'g4 (Tairnanov) and 1 0 lDxdS xd5 1 1 following lines:
a4 b4 1 2 1i'g4 look better for White. d1) 1 1 ...d6 12 g5+ lDf6 13 xf6+ gxf6
b) 8...c5 9 e3 lDf6? (9 ... lDe7 10 1i'h5 14 l:.e3 and l:.ae1 will be murderous, for
is also very good for White; 9 ...1i'b6 looks example 1 4...l:tg8 1 5 l:tae1 1i'd7 1 6 1i'xh7
relatively best) 10 lDdxbS! axb5 1 1 lDxbS l:.g7 1 7 1i'h8.
'it'c6 12 xc5 1i'xc5 1 3 e5 and now: d2) 1 1 ...g6 1 2 1i'e2 e7 1 3 h6! lDxh6
b1) 1 3. .. .ic6 14 b4 1i'xb4 1 5 exf6 lDa6 14 1i'xe7+ c;t>c8 1 5 'ii'g S 1i'c5 16 lDf3 lDfS
16 fxg7 l:.g8 17 l:.b 1 gave White a clear 1 7 xf5 gxf5 1 8 l::ta d1 and it's unlikely that
advantage in Keres-Benko, Curacao 1 962. Black will survive.
b2) 13 ... .ia6 (Idler-Feuerstein, corres e) 8 ... d6 9 1i'h5!? (9 lDf3, threatening
pondence 1 990) and now I like 14 b4! 'it'b6 xb5, also looks good) 9 ... lDf6 10 1i'h4
1 5 lDd6+ c;t>m 16 b5 b7 17 lDxb7 1i'xb7 lbc6 (or 1 0... e7 1 1 e5 lDe4 1 2 1i'g4 lDxc3
1 8 exf6 gxf6 1 9 a4. 13 1i'xg7!) 1 1 lDdxbS! axb5 12 lDxbS 1i'b8
c) 8 ... lDc6 9 lDxc6 and now: 1 3 lDxd6+ 'it'xd6 14 e5 lDxe5 1 5 1i'g3 xg2
cl) 9 ... xc6 1 0 a4 b4 1 1 lDd5!. (15 ... 1:-aS 1 6 f4 lDfg4 17 1i'xg4 was win
c2) 9 ... dxc6 10 e5 lDe7 reaches a position ning for White in Nikitin-Shofman, Mos
we will consider in Game 59 (1 e4 c5 2 lDf3 cow 1 966) 1 6 1i'xe5 'it'c6 1 7 1i'b5 and the
e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lDxd4 a6 5 lDc3 1i'c7 6 e2 queenside pawns will be very dangerous in
b5 7 0-0 b7 8 l:.e1 lDc6 9 lDxc6 dxc6 1 0 the ending.
e5 lDe7 1 1 .id3) but with White to move
instead of Black. Obviously this should be
enough to give White some advantage.
c3) 9 ...1i'xc6 1 0 a4 b4 1 1 lLJdS lDf6 12
d2 lDxd5 (12...c5 1 3 c4 bxc3 1 4 lDxf6+
gxf6 15 xc3 was clearly better for White,
Fernando-Strikovic, Odivelas 2000) 1 3 exd5
1i'c5 14 e4 with a big plus for White, Tal
Gipslis, Riga 1 958.
d) 8 ...b4?! (as if White needed an invita
tion!) 9 lDd5! exd5 1 0 exd5+ c;t>d8 (10... e7
1 1 lDf5 c;t>f8 loses to 12 l:.xe7 lDxe7 13 d6)

9 .i.g5
I also like the immediate 9 a4!?.
9 . .li:Jd7
.

Again Black has to tread very carefully:


a) 9 ... h6 10 h4 g5 (10... lDd7? loses to
1 1 lDxe6!) 1 1 g3 .ig7 1 2 xb5+! axb5 1 3
lDdxbS 'it'd7 1 4 1i'xd6! lDa6 1 5 'it'b6 xc3
1 6 bxc3 c;t>e7 17 lDc7! and White is winning,
Duenhaupt-Keller, correspondence 1 966.
b) 9 ... e7 10 xe7 lDxe7 (10 ...1i'xe7 1 1
lDfS!) 1 1 xb5+! axb5 1 2 lDdxbS 1i'b6 1 3
lDxd6+ c;t-[8 1 4 lDxb7 and White is win-
(Kindermann-J .Polgar, Aruba 1 992) and ning, Bozic-Molerovic, Yugoslavia 1 966.

143
Sicilian Ka n

c) 9 ... lDf6 1 0 J..x f6 gxf6 t t lDdS! exdS 1 2 exdS t 4 exdS+ 'itd8 t S lDc6+!) 1 3 J..xf6
exdS+ '1fild8 1 3 'ii' 3 ! and now: lDxf6 t 4 c3 J..e 7 t S 'ii'e 2 gave Black no real
cl) 1 3 ...lDd7 t 4 lDc6+! wins. compensation for the pawn, Marciano
c2) 13 ...J..e7 t 4 lDfS l:r.e8 t 5 lDxe7 l:r.xe7 Renet, Strasbourg t 992.
t 6 'ii'xf6 J..x dS 1 7 J.. fS! (threatening 'ii'h 8+) 1 1 xa4 lLlgf6
t7 ... J..e6 t8 J..xe6 fxe6 t9 %:txe6 and White t l ...J..e 7 t2 i.xe7 lDxe7 t3 lDb3 0-0 14
wins (Ciocaltea). 'fiat gave Black problems with his isolated
c3) 1 3 ... f5 t 4 'ii'x fS i.g7 t S 'figS+ f6 t 6 a-pawn in Zarnicki-Giardelli, Martinez Valle
lDe6+ and White won in Ghizdavu-Covaci, t 993.
Romania t 970. 1 2 c4!?
10 a4 Really entering into the spirit of the
10 lDdS!?, with similar variations to the game. I f White wants to be more mundane,
next note, is also possible. then t2 J..x f6 lDxf6 1 3 'fiat looks good, for
example t 3...a5? t4 J..b S+ lDd7 t S lDdS!
exdS t6 exdS+ '1fild8 t7 l:r.c4 'ii'b6 t8 i.xd7
'1filxd7 t9 'ii'a4+ and White wins.
1 2 . . .'i!fb8 1 3 lLld5!?

1 0 . . . bxa4
The main alternative is t O ... b4 and now:
a) t t ltJdS!? exdS t2 exdS+ J..e7
(t2 ... lDe7 t3 J..xe7 J..xe7 t 4 lDfS lDeS t S
lDxe7 transposes) t 3 lDfS lDeS t 4 lDxe7 1 3 . . .lLlxd5??
lDxe7 15 i.xe7 'ii'x e7! (1 5 ... '1txe7 t6 f4 Black has to try 13 ... exd5! t 4 exdS+ lDeS!
'ifcS+ t 7 'itht 'it'xdS t 8 'it'g4!? hS!? t 9 (t4 ... '1fild8 loses to t S lDc6+ J..xc6 t6 dxc6
'ii'h 3! gave White an edge in Ghinda-Kirov, lDcS 17 J..x f6+ gxf6 t 8 'it'3 ri;;c7 t 9 'ii'x f6)
Timisoara t 987) t 6 f4 0-0! t 7 fxeS dxeS and t S f4 J..x dS and although I would still much
now Ghinda assesses both t 8 d6 'ii'e 6 19 rather be White, I can't find anything too
'ifd2 .:.adS 20 l:.ad t and t8 'ii'h S fS t 9 devastating.
i.xfS g6 20 J..xg6 hxg6 2 t 'ii'xg6+ 'it'g7 22 1 4 exd5 i.xd5 1 5 lLlxe6! i.xe6 1 6
'ii'e 6+ as unclear. .l:xe6 + fxe6 1 7 'i!fh5 + g6 1 8 'i!fxg6 +
b) Given that Black seems to be okay in hxg6 1 9 i.xg6 mate I 1 -01
the complications above, I prefer the sim
pler t t lDa2!, giving Black headaches over Game 57
his b-pawn. t l ...dS loses to t 2 exdS J..x dS Barash-Batakovs
13 lDxe6! J..xe6 t4 l:r.xe6+ fxe6 t S 'ii'h S+, Correspondence 1 983
tt ... aS t 2 lDbS looks good for White, while
t l ...lDgf6 t 2 lDxb4 'ii'c S (t2... d5 1 3 lDxdS 1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6

1 44
5 li:J c 3 'W c 7

5 li:Jc3 'Wc7 6 .i.d3 li:Jc6 7 li:Jxc6 bxc6 pawn with 1 5... d4 although I still prefer
The alternative recapture 7 ... dxc6 will be White after 16 lDf2!, planning Jie4 and
studied in the next game. t2Jd3.
8 0-0 li:Jf6 1 6 .i.xc4 g6 1 7 .U.c1 h5 1 8 li:Je3 .U.hd8
1 9 llce1 !

This position often arises from the Tai


manov Sicilian via the move order 1 e4 cS 2 1 9 . . .li:Jf8? !
t2Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lDxd4 lDc6 5 ltJc3 a6 6 Barash suggests 1 9 ... t2Jb6 as an un
ltJxc6 bxc6 7 i.d3 "fic7 (7 ... d5 is more provement.
usual) 8 0-0 lDf6. 20 f5!
9 iie2 d5 1 0 .i.g5 .i.b7 1 1 f4 .i.e7 1 2 After this White gets a very strong attack.
e5 li:Jd7 1 3 .i.xe7 xe7 20 . . . .i.e4
20 ... exf5 21 e6! fxe6 22 i.xe6 'rtxe6 23
lDxfS+ 'itd7 24 ltJe7! is very strong.
21 fxe6 fxe6 22 iif2 .i.f5 23 li:Jxf5 +
exf5 24 .U.d 1 ! e8 25 ..td5 .U.ab8 26
iih4 lld7 27 e6 .U.d6 28 .i.b3 .U.xb3 29
axb3 llxe6 30 iic4 iie7 3 1 .U.a 1 'Wd6
32 .U.a5 li:Jd7 33 .U.fa1 We5 34 .U.xa6
.U.xa6 35 Wxa6 Wd4 + 36 h 1 li:Jf6 37
Wa4 + 1 -0

Game 58
Tiviakov-Milov
Groningen 1998
1 4 li:Jd1 ! ?
A different move but with the same idea 1 e4 c5 2 li:Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 li:Jxd4 a6
is 14 lDa4 cS 1 5 c4 d4 1 6 i.e4 Jixe4 17 5 li:Jc3 Wc7 6 .i.d3 li:Jc6 7 li:Jxc6 dxc6 8
"fixe4 g6 1 8 b3 aS 1 9 lDb2 hS 20 t2Jd3 and 0-0 e5
White's well-placed knight gives him the This type of position can be compared to
edge, Spassky-Petrosian, Palma de Mallorca the one reached after 1 e4 cS 2 t2Jf3 e6 3 d4
1 969. cxd4 4 lDxd4 a6 5 Jid3 ltJc6 6 ltJxc6 dxc6 7
14 . . . c5 1 5 c4 dxc4?! 0-0 eS. On one hand, White's knight would
Black should create a protected passed normally prefer to go to d2 (as in Games

145
Sicilia n Ka n

46-47). On the other hand, Black's ...'ir'c7 is c3-knight and playing c2-c4.
only semi-useful. Black would probably 1 3 . . . axb5 14 llxa8 + .i.xa8
have preferred to use the tempo elsewhere.
9 f4 lbf6
Talking of comparisons, this position re
sembles the one which arises after 1 e4 c5 2
lZJB e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lZJxd4 a6 5 .id3 lZJf6 6
0-0 'ir'c7 7 c4 lZJc6 8 lZJxc6 dxc6 9 f4 e5 (see
Game 1 6). Here it is obvious that the devel
oping lZJc3 is a better move than the weak
ening c2-c4.
1 0 'it>h1

1 5 .i.xb5! ?
Now the game becomes extremely com
plicated.
1 5 . . . cxb5 1 6 lbxb5 'iic 6 1 7 'iix d6
1 7 lZJxd6+? <j;;e7 traps the knight on d6.
1 7 . . .'iix b5 1 8 lld 1 !
From this point on, Black has to play a
series of only moves to stay in the game.
1 8 . . . lbd7 1 9 .i.g5 f6 20 'iie6 + 'it>d8
20 .. .'itf8? 21 c4! 'ir'a4 22 b3 'ii'c 6 23
A good waiting move to see what Black l:txd7 'ii'xe6 24 fxe6 is winning for White.
is going to do with his dark-squared bishop.
10 fxe5?! lZJg4! is fine for Black.
1 o . . ..tds
.

After the logical-looking 1 O ... .ic5 I like


the idea of maintaining the tension with 1 1
'ir'e1 !?, for example 1 1 ...b5 1 2 a4 l:tb8 1 3
axb5 axb5 1 4 'it'g 3 lZJg4 1 5 f5 h5 1 6 h 3 .i b7
1 7 lZJd 1 ! f6 1 8 lZJe3 lZJxe3 1 9 .ixe3 i.xe3
20 'ii'xe3 and White was doing very well in
Christiansen-Kekelidze, New York 2000.
1 1 f5 b5 1 2 a4 .i.b7!
12 ...b4?! gives away the c4-square -
White can re-route his knight via b 1 and d2.
The move 1 2... l:tb8, however, looks play 21 c4
able and is the way forward if Black doesn't The main alternative 21 i.xf6+!? gxf6 22
fancy entering the labyrinth of complica 'ii'x f6 + c7 23 'ii'x h8 i.xe4 is unclear as
tions in this game. Black has serious counterplay against g2 (he
1 3 axb5 ! ? already threatens ... i.xg2+).
I f White wishes t o play more positionally, 21 . . .'iic 6 22 lld6 'iia 4
he can try 1 3 'ii'e 2 followed by moving the Black has to keep queens on. 22 ... l:te8 23

146
5 l"O c3 c 7

xc6 xe6 24 xe6 fxg5 25 b4! .ixe4 26 while 8 lt:\b3 is met by 8 ... .ie7, followed by
c5 is probably a winning ending for White. the usual Kan development.
23 e3! 7 0-0
So that the bishop can protect the white An alternative for White is 7 f4 .ib7 8
king. Now b2-b3 is a major threat. .if3 lt:\c6 and now:
23 . . .c7 24 b3 a 1 + 25 g1 :d8 a) 9 lt:\xc6 .ixc6 1 0 0-0 (10 .ie3 .ie7 is
equal - Eingorn) 10 0-0 .ic5+ 1 1 hl b4
1 2 lt:\e2 ltJf6 1 3 lt:\g3 h5! and Black has a
dangerous counter-attack on the kingside,
Aagaard-Mortensen, Copenhagen 1 997.
b) 9 i.e3 l:tc8 10 lt:\b3 lt:\a5! 1 1 lt:\xa5
'iixa5 12 1i'd3 ltJf6 13 0-0 b4 1 4 lt:\d t 'iic7
15 cl 'iic4! with equality, Hort-Eingorn,
Dortmund 1 988.
7 . . b7
.

26 l:txd7 +
After this move the game ends in White
giving perpetual check. Tiviakov gives an
alternative line in which it is Black who ends
up giving the perpetual: 26 l:ta6 1i'dt 27 c5
.ixe4 28 a7+ b8 29 c6 i.xg2+ 30 xg2
1i'g4+ 3 1 f1 1Wdt + 32 g2 1i'g4+.
26 .. J:txd7 27 b6 + 'it>c8 28 c5 +
b8 29 b5 + % - %
The black king cannot escape the checks 8 1:1e 1
after 29 ... l:tb7 30 1i'e8+ c7 31 1i'e7+ c8 Preparing to liberate White's pieces with
32 1i'e8+. the e4-e5 advance. The alternative is 8 .if3
lt:\c6 and now:
Game 59 a) 9 el .id6! 1 0 g3 lt:\xd4 1 1 'iixd4
Midoux-Eingorn .ie5 1 2 1i'd3 lt:\e7 and Black has equalised,
Metz 2000 Panchenko-Miles, Las Palmas 1 978.
b) 9 lt:\xc6 dxc6 with a further split:
1 e4 c5 2 l"Of3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 l"Oxd4 a6 bl) The pawn sacrifice 10 e5?! was intro
5 l"Oc3 c7 6 e2 b5 duced by a very young Garry Kasparov
I will just mention that Black can also against Lev Polugaevsky back in 1 978. Kas
play more conservatively with 6 ... lt:\f6 7 0-0 parov won a great game but time has found
and now: the antidote to this idea: 1 0 ...1i'xe5 1 1 e 1
a) 6 ....ib4 8 1i'd3 lt:\c6 9 h 1 ! transposes 1i'd6! 1 2 .igS 1i'xdl 13 axdl .ie7 1 4
to a well known line of the Sicilian Tai- .ixe 7 xe7 1 5 lt:\e4 lt:\f6 1 6 lt:\cS ab8 1 7
manov. e3 lt:\d5 1 8 a3 .ic8 1 9 lt:\xa6 aS 20
b) 7 ....ic5!?, playing as in Games 5 1 -54, ltJcS lha3 21 bxa3 f5 with a clear black
keeps a Kan flavour. 8 .ie3 is met by 8 ... d6 advantage, Arzumanian-Moroz, Marganets

147
Sicilian Kan

1 999. White, Kamsky-Lutz, Dortmund 1 993.


b2) 10 a4 tt::l f6 1 1 l:te 1 eS gives a rather b) 1 1 ...0-0-0 (this is risky but maybe
dull equality, G.Garcia-Zapata, Yopal 1 997. okay) 12 a4 cS 1 3 axbS c4 14 bxa6 i.c6!
8 lLlc6 9 lLlxc6
. . . with massive complications in Marciano
Or 9 i. fl ! ? and now: Korneev, Ubeda 1 996.
a) 9 ...b4?! 10 ltJdS! dB (10 ... exdS 1 1 1 1 i.d3 c5
tt::lx c6! dxe4 1 2 .l:he4+ tt::le 7 1 3 .lhe7+!
i.xe7 14 tt::lxe7 eS 1 S g4! [Oil] leaves
Black in trouble) 1 1 i. f4 l:tcB (or 1 1 ...eS 1 2
tt::lxc6 dxc6 1 3 i.xeS cxdS 1 4 exdS) 1 2
tt::lxc6 l:txc6 1 3 d2 tt::l f6 1 4 l:tad 1 i.cS 1 S
tt::lxb4 l:tcB 1 6 i.gS and White was clearly
better in 011-Movsesian, Polanica Zdroj
1 996.
b) 9 ...tt::l f6! 10 tt::lxc6 xc6 1 1 eS b4 1 2
tt::le 2 tt::ld S 1 3 a 3 b6 1 4 axb4 i.xb4 1 S c3
i.cS 16 tt::ld4 0-0 was equal in Sareen
Vyzmanavin, Calcutta 1 992.
9 dxc6
. . .

12 'i'h5
White must move the queen to avoid
bishop-winning ... cS-c4. 1 2 e2?! tt::le7
transposes to Dirnitrov-Vyzmanavin above,
but 12 g4!? is an enticing alternative:
a) 12 ... tt::\e 7 13 i.gS l:td4 14 g3 tt::lc 6 (or
14 ... c4 1 S i.xe7 cxd3 1 6 i.xf8 'iti>xf8 1 7
cxd3 dB 1 B l:ted1 fS 1 9 exf6 gxf6 20 tt::le2
l:td6 21 h4 .l:.gB 22 tt::lg3 and Black doesn't
have enough play for the pawn, Nataf
Zapata, Havana 2002) 1 S a4 b4 1 6 tt::le4 c4
17 i.ft tt::lx eS 1B tt::l f6+ gxf6 1 9 ..txf6 l:tg4
20 xeS xeS 21 l:txeS and Black has
10 e5! more weaknesses in this endgame,
This is the point behind B .l:.et . White A.Kovacevic-Pavlovic, Herceg Novi 200 1 .
gains space on the kingside and gives him b) 1 2. . .l:td4 1 3 i.e4!? i.xe4! (13...xeS??
self the opportunity to use the e4-square. loses to 14 i.f4 f6 1 S i.gS, while 1 3 . .. b4?
Now B ... xeS?! 9 ..txbS is favourable for 1 4 3! ..txe4 1 S tt::lxe4 xeS 16 c3! l:tdS
White as Black is left with split pawns on 17 tt::l f6+! 1 -0 was the finish to the game
the queenside. Bezgodov-Pugachov, Petropavlovsk 1 999)
1 0 J1d8
. . 14 l:txe4 (14 tt::lxe4!? xeS 1 S c3 l:tdS 1 6
The main alternative for Black here is i.f4 gives White some play for the pawn)
10 ... tt::\e7 1 1 i.d3 and now: 1 4... xeS! 1 S i.e3! l:txe4 1 6 xe4 xe4 1 7
a) 1 t ...l:tdB 1 2 i.gS (12 e2?! cS 13 i.gS tt::lxe4 tt::l f6 1 B tt::\xcS i.xcS 1 9 i.xcS (Bez
h6 1 4 hS l:td4 was nice for Black in Dirni godov) when White has probably got a
trov-Vyzmanavin, Elenite 1 993) 1 2... h6 1 3 minute endgame advantage.
hS l:td7 1 4 a4 b 4 1 S tt::le4 and I prefer 1 2 g6!?
. . .

148
5 li:J c 3 'ik c 7

This relatively new move may well be 22 h3 l:td4 23 l:tad 1 l:txd 1 24 li:Jxd 1 l:te6
Black's best choice. 12 ... lLle7 13 .i.g5 l1d7 25 li:Jf2 c4 0-1
14 11adl lLlc6 1 5 .i.e4 lLld4 1 6 xb7 'ii'xb7
17 l:.d2 was a little bit better for White, Game 60
Kuczynski-Lau, Polanica Zdroj 1 99 1 . Docx-Van der Linden
1 3 'ikh3 Belgian League 1 996
13 'ii'e 2 .i.g7 14 a4 b4 1 5 lLlbt lLle7
(1 5 ... c4!? 16 .i.xc4 'ii'x e5 is another option) 1 e4 c5 2 li:Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 li:Jxd4 a6
1 6 lLld2 lLlf5 1 7 lLlc4 lLld4 1 8 'iVg4 0-0 1 9 5 li:Jc3 'ikc7 6 g3 b5
.i.gS 11d5 was equal i n Garma-Miezis, Cal Zeller makes a good case for the re
cutta 200 1 . strained fianchetto with 6 ... b6!? and if White
1 3 . . . ..tg7 1 4 ..tg5 li:Je7 1 5 ..tf6 0-0 adopts the same strategy as against 6 ... b5,
then certainly Black is better off, for exam
ple 7 .i.g2 .i.b7 8 0-0 d6 9 l::te 1 lZJd7 1 0
.i.g5 (there i s n o a2-a4 strike here)
10 ...lLlgf6 1 1 lLldS!? exdS 1 2 exd5+ and
now:
a) 1 2... lZJeS 13 f4 0-0-0!? 14 fxe5 dxe5 1 5
.i.xf6 gxf6 1 6 'ii'g4+ 'iti>b8 1 7 lZJc6+ ..txc6
1 8 dxc6 hS and White is just a little bit bet
ter, An.Fernandes-Hodgson, Almada 1 988.
b) 12 ... 'iti>d8 1 3 lLlc6+ i.xc6 14 dxc6 lLlc5
and with the black b-pawn safe on b6 rather
than b4, this position is genuinely unclear,
although I still believe most players would
1 6 'ikh4? prefer to play White (compare with the note
After this move White gets into a tangle. to Black's 1 5th move) .
I prefer the more direct t 6 lZJe4 and now: 7 ..tg2 ..tb7 8 0-0 d6
a) 16 ... c4 17 lLlg5! h6 18 lLlxe6! fxe6 1 9 After this move I suspect that Black is
'ii'x e6+ 11 f7 20 .i.xg6 lLlxg6 21 i.xd8 lZJf8 really struggling to find a playable line, so
22 .i.xc7 lLlxe6 23 .i.d6 is difficult to assess it's here that alternatives should be consid
but I think I prefer White's rook and pawns ered:
to the two minor pieces. a) 8 ... lLlc6 9 net and now:
b) Eliminating the knight is the best solu at) 9 ... ..te7 t o lLlxc6 'ii'xc6 1 1 lZJd5! d6
tion: 1 6 ... xe4! 17 .i.xe4 l:.d4 and I think (l l ...exdS 12 exd5 'ii'd6 13 ..tf4 and d5-d6
this position is level. wins) 12 'ii'g4 f8 13 lLlxe7 lZJxe7 14 i.d2
1 6 . . J:td4! 1 7 f4 li:Jf5 1 8 ..txf5 exf5 with an advantage to White, Gipslis
Now White will have problems along the Vooremaa, Tallinn 1 98 1 .
long h l -aB diagonal. His next move only a2) 9 . . .d 6 1 0 a4 lLlxd4 (1 0. . .b4 1 1 lZJdS!)
compounds his worries. 1 1 'ii'xd4 e5 1 2 lZJd5! 'ii'd7 (or 12 ... 'ii'xc2 1 3
1 9 ..te7? l:te8 20 ..td6 'ikc6 21 'ikg3 ir'b6!) 1 3 'ii'b 6 ..txdS 1 4 cxd5 bxa4 1 5 l1c4
Now was not the time to realise that 21 and Black will lose both his a-pawns, Vogt
11e2 loses to 2t ...l:txd6!. Gerusel, Leipzig 1 975.
21 . . J:txf4! b) 8...b4!? and now:
Simply winning a pawn. White's position bl) 9 lLla4 lLlf6 1 0 l:.et d6 1 1 ..td2 lLlc6
falls apart. 12 c3 bxc3 1 3 ..txc3 was just a little better

149
Sicilian Kan

for White, Joppen-Eising, Bad Pyrmont 1 1 ...dxe5 (or t t ...i.xe5 1 2 l:txe5!) 1 2


1 96 1 . tt::ld xb5! axb5 1 3 tt::lxb5 'ii'b 6! (13. ..'ii'a 5 loses
b2) 9 tt::ld 5!? i s obviously critical, al to 14 tt::ld 6+ Wf8 1 5 b4) 14 i.xb7 l:ta5! 1 5
though I can find no examples of this a4 l:txb5 1 6 axb5 'ii'xb7 1 7 c4 and White's
move: 9 ... exd5 10 exd5 i.c5 1 1 l:tet + Wf8 queenside pawns give him the advantage.
and clearly White has a lot going for him. a22) 1 O .. h5? 1 1 'ii'xg7! (but not
.

However, it would be premarure to say Yakovich's 1 1 tt::lxe6? as Black has the un


Black is lost and he still has that extra piece! likely 'desperado' resource 1 1 ...'ii'x c3!)
c) 8 ... tt::l f6 9 :et b4 10 tt::ld 5!? (10 tt::la4 t t ...i.f6 12 tt::lx e6! 'ii'e 7 13 i.g5!! and White
transposes to note 'b 1 ') 1 O ... exd5 1 1 exd5+ wins after 1 3 .. .fxe6 14 i.xf6 or 1 3 ...'ii'xe6 1 4
Wd8 (t t ...i.e7 loses to 1 2 l:txe7+! Wxe7 1 3 i.xf6 'ii'x f6 1 5 'ii'xf6 tt::lxf6 1 6 e5!.
d6+) 12 ..ig5 'ii'b 6! 1 3 tt::l f5!? h6 and again a23) 1 0 ...g6 11 i.g5!? (angling for com
White has masses of compensation but plications) 1 1 ... h5 12 'ii'h4 and now:
nothing deadly, Kallai-Bako, Hungary 1 980. a23 1) 12 ...e5 1 3 tt::ld 5! i.xd5 14 exd5 Wf8
It's obvious, though, that it takes a very (14 ... exd4 1 5 l:te2!) 1 5 tt::lc 6 tt::lxc6 1 6 dxc6
brave player to take this on with the black i.xg5 17 'ii'xg5 and White's strong c6-pawn
pieces. guarantees an advantage, Yakovich-Roeder,
d) One final idea for Black is 8 ... i.c5, in Cappelle Ia Grande 1 995.
tending 9 tt::lb3 i.e7. Instead I prefer 9 i.e3 a232) 12 ... f6!? 13 i.e3! (13 i.d2 'ii'c4!)
tt::le 7 10 a4!, intending to answer 10 ... b4? 1 3. .. g5 14 'ii'h 3 (14 tt::lxe6 is again met by
with 1 1 tt::ld b5! axb5 12 tt::lxb5 'ii'c6 13 i.xc5 the hard-to-see 1 4... 'ii'xc3!) 14 ...g4 1 5 'ii'h4
'ii'x c5 14 tt::ld 6+ and White wins. 'ii'd7 1 6 h3 b4 1 7 tt::lce2 f5 1 8 i.g5 and
9 .l:!.e 1 Black's position is on the verge of collapse.
b) 9 ... tt::ld7 and now:
b 1) 1 0 i.g5 with a further split:
b 1 1) 1 o ... tt::lgf6 transposes to the text.
b 1 2) 10 ... h6? 1 1 tt::lx e6!.
b 1 3) 10 ...i.e7 1 1 i.xe7 tt::lxe7 1 2
tt::ld xb5!.
b 1 4) I can't find any examples of
10 ...tt::le 5!?. It all looks incredibly risky, but I
can't find a devastating response.
b2) 10 a4! b4 1 1 tt::la2! (1 1 tt::ld 5 is possi
ble, of course, but 1 1 tt::la2 leads to a clear
advantage) 1 1 ...a5 (t t ...tt::lgf6 12 tt::lxb4 d5
1 3 tt::lx d5! looks good) 12 c3 bxc3 13 tt::lxc3
9 lt:lf6
. . . tt::lgf6 14 tt::lcb5 'ii'b 8 1 5 i.g5 and White was
Black has rwo main alternatives, but better in Kupreichik-A.Petrosian, Lvov
nothing that promises a comfortable game: 1 988.
a) 9 ... i.e7 and now: Plenry of different variations but the out
at) 10 a4 (the easy option) 10 ... b4 1 1 come always seems to be the same. Black
tt::la2 tt::l f6 1 2 ..id2! (12 tt::lxb4 d5! is unclear) either gets hit by some tt::ld 5 tactic or ends
1 2... a5 1 3 tt::lb 5 'ii'c 6 14 c3 bxc3 1 5 .ixc3 up worse in a positional way.
and White is better. 1 0 .i.g5
a2) 10 'ii'g4!? is more ambitious: 10 a4! is probably even stronger as it cuts
a21) 10 ... i.f6 1 1 e5!? (Yakovich) down Black's options: 10 ... b4 1 1 tt::ld 5 exd5

1 50
5 liJ c 3 c 7

1 2 exdS+ 'ito>d8 1 3 i.gS and now: This loses easily. Black's last chance was
a) 1 3 ... liJbd7 transposes to the text. 1 5 ... ltJcS although after 1 6 i.xf6+ gxf6 17
b) 1 3 ... i.c8 14 i.xf6+ gxf6 1 5 'ii'h S .l:ta7 'ii'd4 i.e7 1 8 'iixb4 .l:te8 1 9 'ii'd 4 ltJe6 20
16 .l:te4 i.g7 17 .l:tae1 'ii'c S 18 'ii'e 2 i.d7 1 9 'ii'e4 aS 21 c3 .l:tb8 22 b4 (R.Byrne, Mednis)
liJb3 'ii'b 6 20 a S 'ii'b S 21 'ii'e3 .l:tc7 22 'ii'f4 White's queenside pawns should eventually
.l:te8 23 'ii'xd6 l:he4 24 nxe4 'ito>c8 25 i.ft be decisive.
and White won, Quinones-Higashishiba, 1 6 d4 ..te7 1 7 l::!.xe7 ! <t;xe7 1 8 aS liJcB
Siegen 1 970. 1 9 l::!.e 1 + <t;ts
c) 13 ... 'ii'c4 14 c3! (opening yet another
front) 14 ... b3 (falla-Votava, Lazne Boh
danec 1 999) and now 1 5 'ii'h S! is crushing:
1 5 ... 'ii'c 7 16 'ii'h4 liJbd7 17 ltJc6+ 'ito>c8 1 8
i.xf6 ltJxf6 1 9 i.h3+ and White wins.
1 0 . . . liJbd7
Or 10 ... i.e7 1 1 i.xf6! gxf6 (1 1 ...i.xf6 1 2
ltJdxbS!) 1 2 'ii'h S and now 1 2. . .'ii'c 5 i s an
swered by 1 3 ltJxe6!.
1 1 a4 b4
1 1 ...bxa4 12 liJdS! reaches very similar
variations.
1 2 liJdS! exd5 1 3 exd5 +
20 xf6! h6 2 1 dB + xd8 22 ..txdB
f5 23 ..td5 h5 24 c7 l::!.a 7 25 e6 .:taB
26 ..txf5 <j;f7 27 ..te6 + <t;g6 28 d5
l::!.a 7 29 l::!.e4 h4 30 g4
30 .l:tg4+ f5 3 1 .l:tgS mate is quicker!
30 . . . h3 31 l::!.e6 + <t;h7 32 e4 + g6 33
l::!.x g6 l:!.fB 34 f6 l:!.xf6 35 l::!.xf6 + <t;gS
36 ..tdS + <t;g7 37 l:tf7 + <t;g6 38 f4 b3
39 cxb3 'it>h6 40 <j;f2 1 -0

Game 6 1
Waitzkin-I. Gurevich
New York 1 994
1 3 . . .'li'd8
More resilient is 13 ... ltJeS! 14 f4 and now: 1 e4 c5 2 liJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 liJxd4 a6
a) 1 4 ... ltJxd5? 1 5 liJfS! 'it'cS+ 1 6 'ito>h1 f6 5 liJc3 c7 6 g3 b4
1 7 fxeS fxgS 1 8 exd6+ d7 1 9 liJd4! 'iixd6 A much safer move than 6 ... b5. Black
20 .l:te6 'ii'c S 21 .l:teS! (21 liJb3 also wins) can also play 6 ... liJf6 7 i.g2 i.b4 8 ltJde2,
21 ...liJe3 22 l:!.xe3 i.xg2+ 23 'ito>xg2 'ii'd S+ reaching the same position.
24 liJf3! 'iix d1 25 :xd1 + c7 26 ltJxg5 and 7 liJde2
White has a winning endgame, Shabalov Or 7 i.d2 liJf6 8 i.g2 ltJc6 and now:
Benjamin, Las Vegas 1 993. a) 9 ltJxc6 is not a particularly inspiring
b) 1 4 ... liJfd7! (Benjamin) limits the dam move. Play continues 9 ...dxc6 1 0 0-0 0-0
age to just a clear plus for White! and now:
1 4 liJc6 + ..txc6 1 5 dxc6 liJb6? a1) 1 1 f4 .l:td8 1 2 'ii'e2 bS 1 3 l:tad1 i.b7

151
Sicilian Ka n

1 4 a3 i.f8 1 5 e5 tLld5 1 6 tLle4 c5 1 7 c4 tLle7 l:tb8 14 'ifd2 l:td8 1 5 tLlf4 i.d7 1 6 tLld 1
1 8 tLld6 i.xg2 1 9 'ifxg2 tLlf5 20 tLlxf5 exf5 tLle5 1 7 tLld3 i.c6 was level in Kalegin
was a shade better for Black, Popovic Razuvaev, Elista 1 995.
Cvitan, Vrsac 1 987. 10 . . .tLlc6 1 1 g4 d6 1 2 g5
a2) 1 1 'ife2 e5 12 tLld5!? tLlxd5 13 exd5 White can also restrain Black's play on
i.xd2 14 'ifxd2 cxd5 1 5 'ifxd5 l:td8 16 'ifb3 the queenside with 1 2 a4, for example
l:tb8 was dull and level in Plaskett-Cvitan, 12 ... l:tb8 13 g5 tLld7 14 f4 l:te8 1 5 f5 i.f8
Geneva 1 988. and now:
b) 9 tLlb3 i.e7 (now that the knight has a) 1 6 tLlf4 tLlde5 1 7 'ifh5 i.d7 1 8 i.e3 b5
been driven back, the bishop heads back to 19 axb5 axb5 20 Wh 1 b4 21 tLld1 l:ta8 was
a more familiar square) 1 0 f4 d6 1 1 0-0 b5 unclear in Peng Xiaornin-Dizdarevic, Mos
12 a3 i.b7 13 Wh 1 0-0 14 g4 d5 and now: cow 1 994.
b 1) 1 5 e5?! tLld7 1 6 g5 l:tfd8 1 7 tLle2 d4! b) 16 b3? (this is too slow) 16 ... b5 1 7
was good for Black in Peng Xiaornin axb5 axb5 1 8 i.b2 b 4 1 9 tLlb1 tLlce5 20
Z.Almasi, FIDE World Ch., Las Vegas tLld4 tLlc5 and Black has taken over the
1 999. operation, Brinck Claussen-Emms, Copen
b2) Almasi gives 15 exd5 tLlxd5 16 tLlxd5 hagen 1 995.
exd5 as unclear. Note that 1 7 i.xd5 would c) During the game I was concerned
be very greedy given the vulnerable white about the variation 16 h4 b5 17 axb5 axb5
king. 1 7 ...tLld4! looks like a good reply. 18 h5 b4 19 g6 as 19 ... bxc3 20 gxf7+ Wxf7
7 . . .tLlf6 8 .i.g2 i.e7 21 fxe6+ Wxe6 loses to 22 lLlf4+, but
Once again, having displaced a knight 19 ... tLlf6 seems to hold everything together.
from the centre, the bishop returns to e7. 1 2 . . . tLld7 1 3 tLlg3? !
9 0-0 0-0 I think it's too early to decide where this
knight should go. It may, after f2-f4-f5, find
the f4-square more accommodating. For
this reason, I believe White should first
push on with the f-pawn: 13 f4 b5 14 a3
.:tb8 1 5 f5 .:te8! (preparing ... i.f8) 16 Wh1
tLlce5 17 tLlf4 i.f8 18 tLlce2 tLlc5 19 tLlg3
b4 and Black has sufficient counterplay,
Browne-Enklaar, Amsterdam 1 972.
1 3 . . . b5 14 h4 1:1e8 1 5 h5

1 0 h3
The first step in an eventual pawn storm.
White does, however, have other ways of
treating the position:
a) 1 0 tLlf4 d6 1 1 g4 tLlc6 1 2 g5 tLld7 1 3
tLld3 b5 14 f4 b 4 1 5 tLle2 (Timman-Piket,
Amsterdam [4th match game] 1 995) and
Timman suggests 1 5 ... a5!?, intending ... i.a6.
b) 10 b3 d6 1 1 i.b2 tLlc6 12 h3 b5 1 3 a3

1 52
5 ltl c 3 'ii c l

1 5 . . . g6! on the e4-pawn and, as 6 f4 doesn't develop


Now the knight on g3 has litde future. a piece, Black doesn't have to be worried
1 6 f4 b4 1 7 ltlce2 i.b7 1 8 b3?! about his development lagging.
The beginning of a faulty plan. 1 8 ..te3 is 7 ..id3 i.b7
stronger.
1 8 . . ..l:l.ac8 1 9 ..ib2? e5!
Suddenly the gS-pawn is a major weak
ness. If this goes then White's whole posi
tion can easily collapse.
20 ..ih3 exf4 21 ltlxf4 ltlce5! 22 hxg6
hxg6

8 'iff3
Supporting e4 and giving White the op
tion of casding queenside. Alternatively:
a) 8 a3 tt'lf6 (8 ... tt'lc6 9 tt'lxc6 'ii'xc6 is a
reasonable line of the Taimanov, where
White's a2-a3 is not particularly critical) 9
'ii'e 2 tt'lc6 1 0 tt'lf3 b4 1 1 axb4 tt'lxb4 1 2 0-0
23 ltlxg6! ? ..te7 1 3 Wh1 0-0 was equal in Hector
White heads for complications, which in Agrest, Skelleftea 1 999.
the long run are good for Black. However, b) 8 'ii'e 2 b4 (keeping a Kan flavour;
normal play leads to a comfortable black 8 ... tt'lc6 9 tt'lxc6 'ii'xc6 would transpose into
advantage, e.g. 23 ..txeS tt'lxeS 24 ..txc8 a line of the Taimanov) 9 tt'ld1 tt'lf6 1 0 eS
.l:txc8 25 tt'ldS .ixdS 26 exdS ..txgS 27 tt'le4 tt'ldS 11 tt'l2 tt'lc6 1 2 tt'lf3 ..te7 13 ..td2 d6
..te3+ (Gurevich) and Black is in control. and Black was comfortable in Masserey
23 . . . fxg6 24 ..ie6 + <lo>h7 25 'iig4 ..ixg5! Gavrikov, Biel 1 994.
25 ... tt'lxg4? 26 .l:t7+ gives perpetual. c) 8 0-0?! walks into a pin with 8 ...-tcS!
26 'ifh3 + ..ih6 27 lOtS gxf5 28 ..ixf5 +
'it>g7 29 'ifg4 + h8 30 'ifh4 'ifc5 + 3 1
h 1 'ife3 32 ..i c 1 ltlg6! 3 3 ..ib2 + g8
34 ..ixg6 i.xe4 + 35 h2 l:l.xc2 + 0- 1

Game 62
Tolnai-Sjoberg
Zalakaros 1992

1 e4 c5 2 ltlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ltlxd4 a6


5 ltlc3 'ifc7 6 f4 b5!
In my opinion this is a good move
against 6 f4. Black can apply early pressure

1 53
Sicilian Kan

and now: was 1n control, Tolnai-Eingorn, Vienna


c1) 9 tt:'!ce2 tt:'!f6 1 0 eS 'ii'c 6! 1 1 l:tf2 tt:'!g4! 1 99S.
12 tt:'!xc6 tt:'!xf2 13 'ii' f1 tt:'!xc6 and Black will 1 o . . .lL!a5!?
come out with a material advantage. Unleashing the b7-bishop and setting up
c2) 9 i.e3 'ii'b6 1 0 tt:'!ce2 tt:'!f6 1 1 eS tt:'!g4 a devilish trap. 1 0 ... b4 1 1 tt:'!ce2 tt:'!aS 1 2 g4
1 2 'ii'd2 tt:'!c6 1 3 c3 d6! 1 4 b4? (1 4 exd6 l:td8 dS 1 3 eS tt:'!d7 1 4 b1 tt:'!c4 1 S i.c1 0-0-0
is more resolute although Black is still bet was unclear in Tolnai-J.Polgar, Hungarian
ter) 1 4... i.xd4 1 S i.xd4 tt:'!xd4 16 cxd4 dxeS Ch. 1 99 1 .
17 fxeS tt:'!xeS and Black has won a pawn, 1 1 g4?
Gardner-Stoutenborough, Ventura 1 971 . White must play 1 1 bl!, intending to
8 . .lbf6 9 .tel lL!c6!
. meet 1 1 ...tt:'!c4 with 1 2 i.c l ! .
Black can reach a Scheveningen structure 1 1 . . .lL!c4! 1 2 g5?
with 9 ... d6 but in this instance I think it's Falling headlong into the trick but al
worth keeping this option open. Black may ready White is clearly worse in any case: 1 2
have a use for that bishop on f8 (see move i.xc4 'ii'xc4 1 3 g S b4! and 1 2 tt:'!ce2 tt:'!xg4!
1 3!). are just two possibilities here.
1 0 0-0-0
Again White has an important choice:
a) 10 0-0 tt:'!aS! 1 1 h 1 ?! (1 1 tt:'!b3 is
stronger) 1 1 ...tt:'!c4 12 i.cl i.cS 13 tt:'!de2
tt:'!d6! 14 a3 aS! and White's d-pawn came
under severe pressure in Martin Gonzalez
Jansa, Biel 1 98S.
b) 10 tt:'!b3 dS! (10 ... d6 would transpose
into a line of the Scheveningen, but this is a
case of two squares are better than one) 1 1
exdS (1 1 eS d4 1 2 exf6 dxc3 1 3 0-0-0 cxb2+
14 xb2 tt:'!b4 1 S 'ii' f2 gxf6 gave Black a
clear plus in Popov-Miladinovic, Korinthos
1 999) 1 1 ...tt:'!b4! 1 2 i.d4 tt:'!xd3+ 1 3 'ii'xd3 1 2 . . . lL!xb2 ! ! 1 l 'it>xb2 .tal + ! 1 4 Wb 1
tt:'!xdS 14 tt:'!xdS i.xdS 1 S 0-0 l:td8 and Or 1 4 xa3 'ii'x c3+ 1 S tt:'!b3 i.c6
Black was slightly better in Duric-Cebalo, (threatening mate) 16 i.cS aS and White
Bjelovar 1 979. must give up his queen with 1 7 i.xbS 'ii'x f3.
c) 10 g4 (threatening g4-gS but ... ) 1 O ... hS! 14 . . .'i'xcl 1 5 .i.c1 .i.xc1 16 l:txc 1 lL!xe4
1 1 gS tt:'!g4 12 i.gl tt:'!xd4 13 i.xd4 eS 1 4 0-1
fxeS i.cS 1 S e 6 dxe6 1 6 i.xg7 l:tg8 1 7 i.f6 17 i.xe4 'ii'b4+ 18 'ii'b3 'ii'x b3+ 19 axb3
tt:'!xf6 1 8 gxf6 'ii'e S 1 9 0-0-0 i.d4 and Black i.xe4 simply leaves White two pawns down.

1 54
5 0. c 3 c 7

Summary
Out of all of White's six move alternatives, I can certainly recommend the main line with 6
..td3 to the aggressive white player. At the very least White gets good practical attacking
chances and in many lines White also maintains a theoretical edge. Adventurous black play
ers would do well to digest Games 51 -53. These are rich in tactics and strategy and some
players feel very comfortable playing both sides of the board. For the more solid-minded
black player there is certainly nothing wrong with 6 ... 4Jc6 7 tt:'lxc6 dxc6 (Game 58), but
6 ... b5 against 6 ..td3 (and 6 g3) should carry with it some sort of health warning!
Other sixth moves for White are less likely to acquire a theoretical edge, but both 6 g3
and 6 ..te2 are good alternatives which may fit in naturally to a general repertoire against
various Sicilian defences.

1 e4 c5 2 0.f3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 0.xd4 a6 5 0.c3 c7 6 .i.dJ (D)


6 f4 - Game 62
6 ..te2 - Game 59
6 g3
6 ... ..tb4 - Game 6 1 ; 6 ... b5 - Game 60
6 . . .0.f6
6 ... b5 Game 56
-

6 ... tt:'lc6 7 tt:'lxc6


7 ... dxc6 (D) - Game 58; 7 ... bxc6 - Game 57
7 0-0 .i.c5
7 ... d6 - Game 55
8 0.b3
8 ..te3 - Game 54
B . .i.e7 9 f4 d6 (D) 1 0 fJ - Game 5 1
. .

1 0 'ii'e 2 - Game 52; 1 0 a4 - Game 53

6 ..td3 7. dxc 6
. .
9 . . . d6

1 55
CHAPTER SEVEN I
5 ltJc3 b5 6 d3 \'ib6 ! ?

1 e4 c5 2 lt:'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:'lxd4 a6 The idea is familiar but until a few years
5 lt:'lc3 b5 6 ..td3 'i'b6! ? ago it had not been seen in this form. Black
I n this chapter we deal with the very attacks the knight on d4 and hopes to force
modern line 5 lDc3 b5 6 i.d3 'ii'b 6!?. The it to an inferior square before deciding
move 6 ...'ii'b6 was not even mentioned in where to put the queen (usually she eventu
the third edition of ECO in 1 997, but by the ally retreats to c7) .
time the fourth edition came out in 2002 it Other sixth moves for Black will be dis
had been catapulted to one of the main cussed in Chapter 8.
lines. It has given Black a new lease of life 7 ..te3
in the early ... b5 lines and is played by hard
ened Kan advocates such as Smirin and
Epishin.
1 e4 c5 2 lt:'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:'lxd4 a6
5 lt:'lc3 b5
5 ...b5 is a more aggressive response to 5
lDc3 than the main alternative 5 ... 'ii'c 7 (see
Chapter 6). Black immediately gains space
on the queenside and indirectly pressurises
the e4-pawn (... b5-b4 will remove the main
defender). On the minus side, Black fails
(yet again!) to develop a piece and so he
must be very careful to avoid becoming too
far behind and getting blown away by an A natural move. White develops another
early attack. piece and defends the knight. However,
6 ..td3 there are some important alternatives:
The main response. White bolsters the l2Jd4-b3 has been the automatic reply to
e4-pawn and prepares to castle. ... 'ii'b6 and indeed 7 l2Jb3 has traditionally
Other moves will be discussed in Chap been White's most popular response (see
ter 8. Game 67), although in recent years it has
6 . . .'i'b6 faced stiffer competition from other ideas.

1 56
5 liJ c 3 b 5 6 il.. d 3 1i b 6 ! ?

On first sight 7 l'Ll3 (Game 68) makes a was subsequently voted a s the best novelty
strange impression. White often plays f2-f4 from Chess Informant 79. It seems ridiculous
in the Kan and now the knight blocks this that White can allow the knight on d4 to be
pawn. However, White does have alterna captured, especially as the bishop defends
tive plans and the knight controls some g7 from the d4-square, but a deep tactical
important squares from 3. In particular, the sequence produces a very unclear position.
knight supports the advance e4-e5. This Also interesting is 8 e5!? xd4 9 'ii'g4,
advance liberates White's pieces and, if which transposes to 8 'ii'g4 xd4 9 e5 but
timed correctly, can cause Black problems. without allowing 8 'ii'g4 l'Lle7.
7 l'Llde2 is rarely played but it's certainly There has been little practical experience
not a bad move. There's no particular rea of 8 l'Llce2 and there remains some unan
son why the knight is any worse off here swered questions here. Logical for Black is
than, say, b3. The game Perez-Vilela, Ha 8 ...l'Llf6 and now White can play:
vana 1 998 is one of only a handful of ex a) 9 h3?! (this is just too slow) 9 ...b7 1 0
amples of this move: 7 ... l'Llc6 8 0-0 l'Llf6 9 0-0 'ii'c 7 1 1 l'Llc3 d 6 1 2 a 3 l'Llbd7 was very
g5 b4!? 1 0 l'Llb1 b7 1 1 l'Lld2 l'Lle5 12 comfortable for Black in R.Anderson
l'Llg3 .:.c8 1 3 l'Ll3 l'Llfg4 1 4 l'Llxe5 l'Llxe5 and Goldin, Las Vegas 2001 .
Black was certainly holding his own. b) 9 c3! l'Llg4 (9 ... 'ii'c7 looks reasonable)
7 l'Llce2!? has even less practical experi 10 c l !? e5
ence, but again there is nothing obviously
wrong with this move. One point is that
7 ... i.c5 8 c3 e5?! can be rebuffed by 9 b4!,
when 9 ...xd4 10 cxd4 exd4 1 1 0-0 gives
White good play for the pawn. Instead
7...b7 8 0-0 l'Llf6 is logical. Then the con
tinuation 9 e5 l'Llg4 10 f4 d6 1 1 exd6
xd6 looks okay for Black.
7 fl..c 5
. . .

The only really logical move. Black puts


further pressure on d4.
8 fl..e 2
The main response. A piece must retreat
if White wants to defend the d4-knight. and now:
There are, however, more possibilities for b1) 1 1 0-0?! exd4 (1 1 . . .'ii' f6? 1 2 h3 h5 1 3
White on this move than you would at ftrSt hxg4 hxg4 1 4 l'Llf5 g6 1 5 l'Llfg3 'ii'h4 1 6 .l:le1
1magme. was winning for White in Graf-Bellia,
8 'ii'g4!? (Game 66) is an incredible move Korinthos 2001) 1 2 cxd4 e7 1 3 l'Llf4 d6
that was first tested by the American GM 1 4 l'Lld5 'ii'd 8 doesn't give White enough for
Larry Christiansen in a few blitz games on the piece.
the net. He decided that it was no good and b2) 1 1 b4 e7 (1 1 ...8 12 h3 l'Llf6 1 3
wrote a very small article for the German l'Ll 3 'ii'c 7 1 4 0-0 i.b7 1 5 .l:le1 d6 was un
chess magazine Schach saying what a shame clear in Hagarova-Mrva, Slovakian Team
it was that this beautiful line didn't work. Ch. 2000) and here both 1 2 f3 exd4 1 3 fxg4
However, Joe Gallagher did some more dxc3 and 1 2 h3 l'Llx2 1 3 x2 exd4 1 4
analysis and found that it was playable after l'Llxd4 xb4 1 5 i.e3 could certainly d o with
all. He unleashed it in a serious game and it some further investigation.

157
Sicilian Kan

8 . . tt:'lc6
. b22) 1 0 tt:'lxc6 xe3 1 1 fxe3 dxc6 1 2
Continuing to add pressure to d4 is the axbS ( 1 2 'i!id4 'ilixd4 1 3 exd4 e S 1 4 dxeS
most popular continuation, but there are transposes to Game 64) 12 ... 0-0, when
two important alternatives: White's dodgy kingside pawn strucrure gives
a) 8... .i.b7 9 a4! and now: Black compensation for the pawn.
at) 9 ... b4?! 1 0 aS! and tt:'la4 is good for 9 tt:'lxc6 dxc6
White. The main alternative runs 9 ... .i.xe3 1 0
a2) 9 ... tt:'lc6?! 10 aS 'ilia? (lO ... tt:'lxaS 1 1 fxe3 dxc6 1 1 'ilid4! 'ilixd4 1 2 exd4 eS! and
.l:IxaS! 'ilixaS 1 2 tt:'lb3) 1 1 tt:'ldxbS! axbS 1 2 now White has a choice: 1 3 dxeS (Game 64)
tt:'lxbS .i.xe3 1 3 tt:'lxa7 .i.xa7 1 4 c 3 when and 1 3 dS (Game 6S).
White's queen and queenside pawns are 9 .. .'i'xc6!? is a brand new idea from Ep
worth more than the three minor pieces, ishin: 10 eS (10 .i.d4!?) 10 ... .i.xe3 1 1 fxe3
Asrian-Belotti, European Ch. 200 1 . 'ilic7 12 'i!id4 (1 2 'ilid6!?) 12 ... fS 13 exf6
a3) 9 ... tt:'lf6 with a further split: tt:'lxf6 14 0-0 0-0 l S tt:'le4 'ilia7 worked out
a3 1) 10 axbS axbS 1 1 .l:Ixa8 .i.xa8 1 2 okay for Black in Mortensen-Epishin, Co
tt:'lJxbS .i.xe3 1 3 fxe3 0-0 1 4 'ilid3 tt:'lc6 l S penhagen 2002 and I don't think we've seen
0-0 'ilicS 1 6 'ilid2 gave White a n edge in Van the last of this move.
den Doei-Chuchelov, Bad Zwesten 2000. 1 0 .ltxc5
a32) 1 0 eS!? tt:'ldS 1 1 tt:'lxdS .i.xdS 1 2 tt:'lfS 10 eS?! is too ambitious: 10 ... .i.xe3 1 1
.i.xe3 (12 ... .i.xg2 1 3 .i.xcS 'ilixcS 1 4 'ilid6! fxe3 'ilixe3 1 2 'ilid6 tt:'le7 1 3 .l:IJt 'ilib6 1 4
'ilixd6 l S tt:'lxd6+ 'iii> fB 1 6 .l:Igl was better f3 .l:Ia7 (Svidler) and Black successfully
for White in Magomedov-Dzhakaev, Russia unravels.
2000) 1 3 tt:'lxe3 .i.b7 14 axbS axbS l S .l:Ixa8 10 . .'ifxc5
.

.i.xa8 16 'ilid3 tt:'lc6 1 7 'ilid6 'ilid4


( 7 ... 'iliaS+ 1 8 c3 b4 19 tt:'lc4 'iliat + 20 .i.dt
bxc3 21 0-0 cxb2 22 .i.c2 [Magomedov]
leaves Black's kings stranded in the centre)
1 8 'ilia3 'ilia7 1 9 'ilixa7 tt:'lxa7 20 'iii>d2 <3;e7
21 f4 with an edge, Antal-Kustar, Budapest
2002.
b) 8 ... tt:'le7!? 9 a4 (critical; 9 0-0 tt:'lbc6 1 0
tt:'lxc6 tt:'lxc6 1 1 .i.xcS 'ilixcS gave Black a
comfortable position in Paramos Domin
guez-Epishin, Linares 2001) and in this
posmon:
bl) 9 ... b4 10 aS! 'ilic7 1 1 tt:'la4 looks good
for White, for example 1 1 ...d6 1 2 tt:'lxcS This position has already been reached
dxcS 1 3 tt:'lb3 tt:'ld7 14 tt:'ld2 .i.b7 l S tt:'lc4 on quite a few occasions and is the subject
0-0 16 f3 .l:Ifd8 1 7 'ilid6 'ilixd6 1 8 tt:'lxd6 of Game 63 .
.i.c6 19 'ifi>f2 with a pleasant ending, Stoja
novski-Kocovski, Panormo 200 1 . Game 63
b2) 9. . .tt:'lbc6!? looks more testing: Antoniewski-Berzinsh
b21) 1 0 aS tt:'lxaS 1 1 .l:IxaS (1 1 b4 .i.xb4 Prerov 200 1
12 tt:'ldxbS 'ilic6 1 3 'i!id4 tt:'lc4!) 1 1 ...xd4 1 2
.l:.xbS axbS 1 3 .i.xd4 gives White definite 1 e4 c5 2 tt:'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt:'lxd4 a6
compensation for the exchange. 5 tt:'lc3 b5 6 ..td3 'i'b6 7 ..te3 ..tcs 8

1 58
5 l:D c 3 b 5 6 i.. d3 b 6 ! ?

i..e2 'Dc6 9 'Dxc6 dxc6 1 0 i.. x c5 'ii'x c5 b2) 1 4. . .exf4 1 5 'ii'xg7 'it>e7 1 6 i.. f3 h 6 1 7
1 1 'ii'd 3 e 5 'ii'x e5 1 8 l:the 1 'iVf5 1 9 lLie4 l:tag8 20
Preparing to casde queenside and also to lLid6 'ti'g6 21 'ii'xg6 fxg6 22 lLib7 'it>f7 with
swing the queen to g3 in some lines. Rou an unclear endgame, Mulyar-Stripunsky,
tine play gives White nothing: Seatde 2002.
a) 1 1 f4 e5 1 2 'i'd3?! (12 f5 is equal) 1 2 . . 0-0 1 3 f4 e5 14 f5
.

1 2... exf4 1 3 g3 'i'e5! 1 4 0-0-0 i..e 6 and The stage is set for a race as both sides
Black's well-placed queen ensures an advan will push their pawns on the side of the
tage, Yermolinsky-Smirin, Philadelphia opposing kings. Svidler originally assessed
1 998. this position as clearly better for White, but
b) 11 0-0 lLif6 12 i..d 3 e5 13 a4 i..g4 14 recent games have cast doubt upon this
'i'd2 0-0 15 l2Jd1 l:tfd8 16 'i'e3 lLid7 gave judgement.
Black absolutely no problems in Naby 1 4 . . . a5
Kengis, Tanta City 2002. 14 ...l:ta7, preparing to swing the rook
1 1 . . .'Df6 over to d7, is another idea: 1 5 g4 l:td7 1 6
The most accurate move order. The line 'ii' f3 l:tfd8 1 7 g 5 l:txd l + 1 8 lLixd1 ! (White
1 1 ...e5 1 2 0-0-0 i..e 6 1 3 'i'g3! is annoying plans to use the other rook for attacking)
for Black. 1 3 ... g6 is answered by 14 lLid5!, 1 8 ... lLie8 1 9 lLif2 'ii'e7 20 l:tg1 c5 21 'ii'e3 c4
while White is also better after 1 3 ... 'it>f8 1 4 22 c3 and White's attack is more potent,
f4 exf4 1 5 'i'xf4 lLie7 1 6 l:thfl, Khalifman Balinov-M.Hoffmann, Budapest 1 999.
Gunawan, Bali 2000. 1 5 g4
15 i.. f3 i..a6 (15 ... a4 16 'ii'd6!) 16 l:the1
l:ta7 17 'ii'd6 'ii'x d6 18 l:txd6 l:tc8 19 g4 l:td7
20 l:ted1 l:txd6 21 l:txd6 'it>f8 was an equal
ending in Lauk-Kveinys, Puhajarve 200 1 .
1 5 . . . a 4 1 6 g5 'Dd7

1 2 0-0-0
White can also play the immediate 12 f4
e5 and now:
a) 1 3 f5 i..b 7 1 4 0-0-0 'it>e7 1 5 g4 l:thd8
1 6 'i'f3 (Svidler-Kasimdzhanov, Wijk aan
Zee 1 999) and here Svidler gtves 1 7 a3
16 ... l:txd 1 + 17 l:txd 1 l:td8 as equal. White can also play 17 l:td2, giving the
b) 1 3 0-0-0 i..e 6! 14 'i'g3 and here Black knight a retreat square on d l . Play continues
has a choice of rwo reasonable moves: 17 ... b4 1 8 lLid 1 i..a6 and now:
b1) 1 4...0-0 1 5 f5 i..c4 1 6 i..x c4 bxc4 1 7 a) 19 'ii'x d7 i..xe2 20 l:txe2 (20 'it>b 1 ?
l:the1 .l:tab8 and Black i s certainly not worse, i.. f3 2 1 l:te1 a3 left White i n trouble in Peng
Fercec-Rotstein, Seefeld 200 1 . Xiaornin-Xu Jun, Udaipur 2000) 20...l:tfd8

1 59
Sicilia n Kan

21 'ilc7 (21 'ilb7? l:!.a7 22 l:td2 l:te8 wins for 22 . . . ..ia6 23 'ifa2
Black) 2 1 . . .l:!.dc8 22 'ilb7 l:!.cb8 23 'ilc7 l:!.c8
with a draw by repetition.
b) 19 'ile3 b3 20 a3 'ilxe3 21 ttJxe3 ttJcS
22 i.d3 was equal in Blehm-Grycel,
Glogow 200 1 .
1 7 . . . b4! 1 8 axb4 'ii'xb4
It's become apparent that, as the position
opens up on the queenside, Black can create
threats more quickly than White. However,
if the position simplifies then Black's iso
lated pawns on the quecnside could become
weak. It's logical, then, that White tries to
exchange queens.
23 . . . b3 + ! 24 cxb3?
24 b1 ! limits the damage: 24 ... i.xe2 25
ttJxe2 ttJcS 26 tDc3 although Blark still has
a dangerous attack after 26 ... a3!.
24 . . . axb3 25 'ii'b 1 'ife3 + 26 l::td 2 l::ta dB
27 l::ted 1 ..ixe2 28 xe2 h6!
Despite the missing piece, Black is win
ning. White can hardly move and is close to
being in zugzwang.
29 'ifa 1 l::ta B 30 'ifb 1 l:txf7 31 c3 l:td7
32 h3 .:tadB 33 d5 cxd5 34 'ifd3 :taB
35 'iii>b 1 l:tda7! 0-1

1 9 'ifc4 Game 64
Berzinsh gives the line 1 9 'ild6!? tlJcS 20 Haba-Polujahov
'fixeS a3 21 b3 ttJxb3+ 22 cxb3 'ilxb3 23 Swidnica 2000
l:td2? a2 24 l:!.xa2 l:!.xa2 25 ttJxa2 'ilxa2 as
giving Black a clear advantage, but 23 d2! 1 e4 c5 2 f3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 xd4 a6
looks more critical to me: 23 ... a2 24 l:!.a 1 5 c3 b5 6 ..id3 'ii'b 6 7 ..ie3 ..ic5 8
i.xfS! 25 l:!.hc t ! i.e6 26 'Ot>et is very un ..ie2 c6 9 xc6 ..ixe3 1 0 fxe3 dxc6
clear. With this in mind, Black should also 10 ...'ilxc6 1 1 'ild4! is strong for White,
consider maintaining the initiative with for example 1 1 ...f6 12 eS! 'ii'xg2 13 0-0-0
20 ... l:tb8!? 21 ttJa2 'ilb6. and White has a dangerous initiative.
1 9 . . .'ii'b 6 20 g6 1 1 'ifd4
20 ttJxa4? 'ile3+ 21 b1 (21 .l:.d2 ttJcS!) Forcing Black to straighten out White's
21 ... i.a6 22 'ii'c3 'ii'xe2 0-1 was the end of pawn weaknesses.
Berzinsh-Gonzalez de Ia Torre, Villalba 1 1 . . .'ifxd4 1 2 exd4 e5!
2001 - 23 l:txd7 loses to 23 ...'ii'xe4. Or else White will take control of the
20 . . . c5! 21 gxf7 + 'it>hS 22 l::th e1 ?! dark squares with e4-e5.
22 f6? loses to 22... i.e6!. However, 22 1 3 dxe5 e7
'ila2 ttJxe4 23 ttJxe4 'ile3+ 24 tiJd2 'ii'xe2 Simply preparing to recapture the pawn
(Ribli) restricts Black to a small advantage. with ... ttJg6xe5. White must play actively as

1 60
5 li:J c 3 b 5 6 i. d3 'ii b 6! ?

if Black is allowed to capture on eS without that this also leads t o equality. Play contin
a struggle then White, with an isolated pawn ues 20 l::tc 7 and now:
on e4, could well stand worse. a) 20... b4?! 21 lDe2 i..c4 (21 ...l:.xe5 22
1 4 a4 ltJd4 i..d7 23 l::tx f7! 23 ... 'iti>xf7 24 lDxc6 l:te7
White can also play the immediate 1 4 25 lDxb8 i.bS 26 l::tc S gave White a decisive
i..h S with the idea of simply eliminating the advantage in Mitkov-Bruzon, Lisbon 1 999)
knight when it lands on g6. Play continues 22 l::te 1 l:txeS 23 ltJd4 and White went on to
1 4...lDg6 1 5 i..xg6 hxg6 16 0-0-0 and now: win in Volokitin-Kveinys, Lausanne 2000.
a) 16 ... i..g4 17 .l:ld6 l:tc8 18 ltJd1 l:thS 19 b) 20 .. Jhe5! (why not?) 21 b4! (21 l::txc6
lD2 i..e 6 20 ltJd3 (Haba-Ruzele, Boe b4 is equal) 21 ...i..d7 22 l:ta1 l:tc8 23 l:tb7
blingen 1 999) 20 ... a5 21 lDf4 l:txeS 22 lDxe6 cS! 24 lDxbS .ixbS 25 l::tx bS l::txe4 26 bxcS
l:txe6 23 l:txe6+ fxe6 is equal - Haba. l::tc7 and Black will continue with ...l::tc4.
b) 16 ...l:th5 17 l:td6 l:txeS 18 l:thd 1 (18 20 .l:!.d1 .l:!.d8 21 b4 l:txe5 22 l:l.c7
.l:lxc6? allows Black to trap the rook with
1 8... 'itd7!, Galego-Hauchard, Mondariz 2000)
1 8 ... .ig4 again with equality, G.Shahade-
Waitzkin, New York 1 999.
1 4 . . .l:l.b8
14 ... b4 1 5 lDa2 aS 16 ltJc l ltJg6 17 ltJd3
looks a bit better for White.
1 5 axb5 axb5 1 6 h5

22 . . .l:te6?
22 ... l::te 7 23 l:.a1 llc8 24 l::tb 7 i..e6 25
l:txe7+ 'iti>xe7 26 'iti>2 cS is an equal position
according to Haba. After the text move
White is allowed to obtain a grip on the
position.
23 lti>f2 rt:ie7 24 rt:ie3 .l:!.d6 25 .l:!.a7 l:l.xd 1
26 li:Jxd 1 rt;d6 27 li:Jf2 i.e6 28 li:Jd3 .ic4
1 6 . . .li:Jg6 29 li:Jb2?
16 ... b4?! loosens Black's queenside. 29 h4 l::th8 30 g3 (Haba) preserves some
White was better after 17 lDe2 l::tb S 1 8 .if3 advantage, for example 30 ... l::td 8 31 'iti>f4
l::tx eS 19 l:ta4 l:.bS 20 ltJd4 .l:lb6 21 'iti>2 in i..xd3 32 cxd3 'iti>e6 33 'iti>e3.
Timman-Sokolov, Amsterdam 1 999. 29 . . . i.e6 30 rt;d4?
1 7 i.xg6 hxg6 1 8 l:l.a7 Again, White should play 30 lDd3 i..c4
Or 1 8 0-0-0 b4 1 9 lDa4 l:thS 20 l:td6 31 h4!.
l::txeS 21 l::th d1 i.g4 22 l::t 1 d4 cS 23 l:.c4 30 . . . c5 + ! 31 bxc5 + rt;c6 + 32 rt;e3
i..e 6 24 l:.xcS l:.xe4 25 b3 '12- 1/2 De Firmian 'iPxc5 33 l:ta6 b4 34 li:Jd3 + rt;b5 35 l:ta7
Kengis, Bundesliga 1 999. .l:td7 36 l:txd7 i.xd7 37 rt;d4 i.g4 38
1 8 . . .l:th5 1 9 0-0 i.d7 li:Je5 i.e6 39 h4 i.a2 40 c3 bxc3 41
19 ... ..ie6 has been criticised but I believe rt;xc3 rt;c5 % - %

161
Sicilian Kan

White went on to Wln m Yu Shaoteng


Game 65 Ribshtein, Budapest 2000.
Blehm-Gajewski b) 14 ... cxd5 1 5 ltJxdS ltJxdS 1 6 l:.xd5 f6
Polish Championship 200 1 1 7 l:.hd1 i.e6 1 8 l:.d6 'it>e7 1 9 a4 bxa4 20
i.xa6 l:thb8 was equal in Moosavian
1 e4 c5 2 lLltJ e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ltlxd4 a6 Khaghani, Tehran 2002, but 1 5 exdS! is
5 lLlcJ b5 6 i.dJ 'ilfb6 7 .tel i.c5 8 more consistent.
i.e2 lLlc6 9 lLlxc6 i.xeJ 1 0 fxe3 dxc6 1 5 b4! .:a7?!
1 1 'ii'd4 'ilfxd4 1 2 exd4 e5 1 3 d5 lLle7 Given as dubious by Nataf, who offers
Or: 1 5 ... cxd5! as an improvement with the fol
a) 1 3 . .. c5!? 14 a4 b4 1 5 lt:\d 1 lt:\f6 16 i.f3 lowing line: 1 6 exdS ltJfS 1 7 d6! and now:
aS 1 7 lt:\e3 i.a6 18 0-0-0 is given as slighdy a) 1 7 ... l:.cB 1 8 lt:\e4 l:lc6 1 9 i.hS 0-0 20
better for White by Cvetkovic. If Black lt:\cS with a clear plus for White, although in
could blockade the dS-pawn with his knight this line 1 9 ... lt:\e3! 20 l:.d2 lt:\c4 looks like an
on d6 then it would be he who had the ad improvement for Black.
vantage, but this proves to be difficult to b) 17 ... lt:\e3 1 8 l:.d3 lt:\c4 1 9 l:.d5!.
achieve, for example 1 8 ... 'it>e7?! 1 9 g4! g6 20 c) 17 ... i.c6 1 8 l:the 1 ! .
d6+ dB 21 gS ltJd7 22 i.g4 and Black is d) 1 7. . .lt:\d4 1 8 l:the1 i s given a s only
in some trouble. slighdy better for White by Nataf. After
b) 1 3. .. i.b7 14 a4 b4 1 5 dxc6 i.xc6 1 6 1 8 .. .'d8 19 i.d3 f6 the position is still very
ltJdS i.xdS 1 7 exdS 'it>e7 1 8 d6+! 'it>xd6 19 unclear. Is the pawn on d6 a strength or a
0-0-0+ 'it>c7 20 l:ldS lt:\e7 2 1 l:heS gave weakness?
White an edge in Svidler-Milov, Frankfurt 1 6 .:d2
(rapid) 2000. The earlier game Nataf-Koch, French
1 4 0-0-0 Ch. 2000 continued 16 'it>b2 cxdS?! (this
14 dxc6?! lt:\xc6 1 5 ltJdS 0-0 promises gives White's knight the e4-square) 17 exdS
White nothing. fS? 18 a4! bxa4 19 lt:\a2 'it>f7 20 c4 and
White's queenside pawns promise a decisive
advantage.
1 6 0 0 00-0 1 7 'it>b2!

1 4o o oi.d7
Alternatively:
a) 14 ... l:.a7?! 1 5 a4! (15 b4, as in the main
game, also looks strong) 1 5 ...b4 1 6 lt:\a2 aS This position is difficult for Black as the
1 7 dxc6 lt:\xc6 1 8 i.bS l:lc7 1 9 l:.d5 i.e6 20 pawn on dS is causing some problems.
i.xc6+ l:lxc6 21 lhaS 0-0 22 lt:\xb4 and 1 7 0 0 ocxd5 1 8 exd5 lLlc8 1 9 d6! ..tc6 20

1 62
5 li:J c 3 b5 6 i. d3 il b 6 ! ?

lanica Zdroj 2000.


.l:[hd1 .l:!.d8 21 a4 bxa4 22 li:Jd5 f6 23 c4
23 . . . .1:!.xd6 24 i.g4 i.d7? 9 e5 .i.xe3! ?
This loses immediately. Black has more If Black wishes to avoid the following
chances of survival with 24... ..ixd5 although
complications then he can bail out into an
Ribli's 25 c5! ..ie6 26 cxd6 ..ixg4 27 d7 ending with 9...lt:Jc6 10 'ii'xg7 ..ixe5 1 1
l:.xd7 28 l:.xd7 ..ixd1 29 l:.xd1 gives White
'ii'x e5 lt:Jxe5 1 2 ..ixb6 ..ib7 and now:
good winning chances. a) 13 lt:Je4 ..ixe4 1 4 ..ixe4 d5 1 5 ..id3 (1 5
..id4 f6 transposes to note 'b') 1 5 ... lt:Je7
25 .i.xd7 .l:!.axd7 26 c5 .l:!.xd5 27 .l:!.xd5
.l:!.c7 28 .l:!.d7 1 -0 with a level position, Lanzani-Epishin,
r------...., Bratto 2000.
Game 66 b) 1 3 ..id4 f6! (13 ... lt:Jxd3+ 14 cxd3 f6 1 5
Antal-Szilagyi lt:Je4 ..ixe4 1 6 dxe4 l:.c8 1 7 'ittd2 looks a
Budapest 200 1 touch better for White, Zufic-Titz, Szem-
._______________. gotthard 2001) 1 4 lt:Je4 ..ixe4 1 5 ..ixe4 d5
1 e4 c5 2 li:Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 li:Jxd4 a6 1 6 ..ixe5 fxe5 17 ..id3 e4 1 8 ..ie2 lt:Jf6 with
5 li:Jc3 b5 6 i.d3 fib6 7 i.e3 i.c5 8 an equal ending, Kotter-Kengis, Bundesliga
ikg4!? 2000.
1 0 ikxg7 i.xf2 + 1 1 'it<f 1
Milov assesses 1 1 'ittd 1 lt:Jc6 1 2 'ii'x h8
lt:Jce7 1 3 lt:Je4 ..ib7 1 4 lt:Jd6+ 'ittd 8 as clearly
better for Black.
1 1 . 0 .i.h4 1 2 g3
Or 12 lt:Je4 ..ib7 13 lt:Jd6+ 'ii'xd6 1 4
exd6 ..if6 (Milov) when I prefer Black's
three minor pieces to White's queen.

8 . . . i.xd4
Black can also decline the offer with
8 ... lt:Je7 and now:
a) 9 'ii'xg7 l:.g8 1 0 'ii' f6 l:.g6 1 1 'ii'h 8+
l:.g8 12 'ii' f6 is a draw by repetition.
b) 9 e5! ..ib7 (9 ... h5 10 'ii'h4 g5? [Heb
den-Lalic, Lausanne 2001] 1 1 ..ixg5! ..ixd4
12 ..ixe7 ..ixe5 1 3 lt:Je4 and White is clearly
better) 1 0 0-0-0 (Milov gives the line 10 1 2 . . .fie3!
lt:Je4 ..ixe4 11 ..ixe4 ..ixd4, assessing the In the stem game White obtained a clear
position as unclear; 12 ..ixa8 ..ixe3 1 3 fxe3 plus after 12 ... ..ib7 1 3 'ii'x h8 ..ixh1 14
'ii'x e3+ 14 'iVe2 'ii'x e2+ 1 5 'ittxe2 lt:Jg6 is 'ii'xg8+ rl;e7 15 'ii'g4!, Gallagher-Milov, Bicl
one possible continuation) 10 ... h5 1 1 'ii'f4 2000.
lt:Jbc6 1 2 lt:Jxc6 ..txc6 1 3 ..ixc5 'ii'x c5 14 1 3 i.e4
lt:Je4 ..ixe4 15 ..txe4 l:.a7 1 6 l:.d3 and White Or 1 3 'ii'xh8 'ii' f3 + 14 'ittg1 and now:
was better in V.Belov-Anuszkiewicz, Po- a) 14 ... ..ib7 1 5 'ii'xg8+ 'itte 7 1 6 ..ie4

1 63
Sicilian Ka n

'iif'e 3+ 1 7 'it>g2 .ixe4+ 1 8 ll:lxe4 'iif'x e4+ 1 9 a) 1 7 gxh4 .ib7 1 8 'ilr'g5+ (18 'ilr'g3 .l:!.g8!
'it>h3 'iif'x e5 i s unclear - Milov. 1 9 'ilr'xg8 'iif' f3 + 20 'it>g1 e3 wins for Black)
b) 14 ... .id8 1 5 'iif'xg8+ 1;e7 1 6 h4 .ib7 18 ... 'iif'xg5+ 1 9 hxg5 e3+ 20 rlig3 .ixh l 21
1 7 'ilr'g5+ 'it>e8 1 8 'ilr'g8+ and White must %:txh 1 l:tc8 gives Black the better ending, for
take the draw by perpetual check. example 22 %:tel ll:lxe5 23 lhe3 ll:lc4!.
1 3 . . . d5 14 'ifxh8 b) 17 %:thfl ll:lxe5 1 8 l%ae1 'iif'h6 19 gxh4
Naturally 14 exd6?? loses to 14 ... .if6. 'iif'xh4 and Black will continue with ... .ib7.
1 4 . . . dxe4! 1 7 . . .'iif 3 + ?!
Milov only gives 1 4 ... 'ii'f8 1 5 .ixh7 17 ... b4! looks strong: 18 ll:la4 (18 .l:!.hfl
'iif' f3 + 16 'it>gl .idS 17 'iif'xg8+ rlie7 18 h4, bxc3 19 'iif'x f7 + 'it>d8 20 gxh4 is very com
which is winning for White. plex but I prefer Black) 18 ... 'iif'g5 1 9 'iif'xh7
1 5 'iix g8 + <l;e7 .ib7 20 llhfl ll:lxe5 21 l%f4 (21 'iif'xh4 e3+
22 'it>h3 l:th8!) 21 ....l:!.d8 22 'iif'xh4 .l:!.d2+ 23
'it>fl 'iif'xh4 24 gxh4 ll:lf3 and this should be
winning for Black.
1 8 <i;h3 b4 1 9 'ifxh 7
1 9 'lt?xh4! bxc3 20 l:.afl is stronger.
1 9 . . . ..tf6! 20 l:thf1 llJxe5! 21 l:txf3 llJxf3
22 lLlxe4 ..tb7 23 'iih 5 ..txe4 24 'iic 5 +
<i;e8

1 6 'Wtg2?
This move hands the advantage to Black.
I prefer 1 6 'ilr'g4! and now:
a) 1 6 ... .ig5? 1 7 ll:lxe4 h6 (or 17 ... .ib7 1 8
.l:!.e1 !) 1 8 h4 ll:ld7 (or 1 8 .. .f5 1 9 exf6+ .ixf6
20 ll:lxf6 'it>xf6 21 .l:!.h2! 'it>e7 22 .l:!.d 1 .id7
23 .l:!.2 and with his king sandwiched be
tween the white rooks, Black is unlikely to
survive) 1 9 hxg5 .ib7 20 l:te1 ll:lxe5 21 The smoke has cleared and Black has
'iif'xe6+ ! fxe6 22 l%xe3 ll:lc4 23 'it>e2! ll:lxe3 three minor pieces fighting against a queen
24 rlixe3 .ixe4 25 'it>xe4 hxg5 26 'lt?e5 and and pawn. The position is still genuinely
this ending looks very good for White. unclear but Black's extra pieces prevail in
b) 1 6...'iif'f3 + ! 17 'iif'x f3 exf3 1 8 gxh4 ll:ld7 the end.
and White's weak pawns give Black com 25 .l:l.d1 ..te7 26 'iic4 f5 27 g4 f7 28
pensation for the material deficit, for exam 'iic 7 fxg4 + 29 <i;g3 ..td5 30 c4 bxc3
ple 19 .l:!.el .ib7 20 .l:!.g1 .l:!.c8 21 a3 .l:!.c4. 31 bxc3 .l:!.h8 32 c4 l:th3 + 33 <i;f2
16 'iif'xc8 leads to a draw by perpetual af .l:l.xh2 + 34 e3 l:tc2 35 .l:!.h 1 .l:l.c3 + 36
ter 1 6 ... .ixg3 1 7 hxg3 'if' f3 + 1 8 'it>g 1 <i;f2 lLlg5 37 'iff4 + 'iti>g6 38 cxd5 llf3 +
'iif'xg3+ 1 9 'iii> fl 'iif' f3 +. 39 'ifxf3 gxf3 40 dxe6 f5 41 llc1 <i;f4
16 ... lLld7 17 Wg7 42 f1 lLle4 43 g 1 <i;e5 44 llc6 Wd5
Or: 45 l:tc2 ..tc5 + 46 <i;h2 <l;xe6 47 a4 a5

1 64
5 !iJ c 3 b 5 6 i.. d3 b 6 ! ?

48 l:l.b2 d5 49 l:l.b7 f2 50 g2 !iJg3 Zee 1 998.


0-1 c) 8 a4!? b4 9 tt'le2 i.b7 10 tt'led4 tt'lf6 1 1
'ii'e 2 tt'lc6 1 2 tt'lxc6 .ixc6 1 3 eS tt'lg8 1 4 0-0
Game 67 tt'le7 1 S i.gS (1S i.xa6?! is answered by
Shmuter-Maryasin 1 S ... .ixg2!) 1 S ... tt'lg6 1 6 l:.fe1 .ib7 with a
Israeli Team Championship 1999 level position, Svidler-Ehlvest, European
Team Ch. 1 997.
1 e4 c5 2 !iJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 !iJxd4 a6 8 . . .!iJf6
5 !iJc3 b5 6 i.d3 b6 7 !iJb3 c7 8 ... .ib7 is probably more accurate than
8 ... tt'lf6 if Black is looking to play an early
... d7-d6 as it's more difficult for White to
arrange a dangerous e4-eS push - Black can
follow up with ... d7-d6 and ... tt'ld7 before
playing ... tt'lgf6. On the other hand, White
can still consider ideas with a2-a4.
a) 9 f4 d6 (or 9 ... tt'lf6 transposing to note 'b'
to Black's 9th move; 9 ... b4 10 tt'le2 tt'lf6
transposes to the main game) 10 'ii'e 2 tt'ld7
1 1 .id2 tt'lgf6 transpose into note 'e 1' to
Black's 9th move, but without allowing the
possibility of 1 1 eS.
b) 9 l:le1 .id6!? (9... d6 should be an
It makes sense not to delay this queen swered by 10 a4) 10 'ii'h S tt'lf6 11 'ii'h4 tt'lc6
move as otherwise White can exploit her 12 f4 .ie7 13 'ii'g3 tt'lb4 14 .ie3 0-0 1 S a3
position on b6 with an early a2-a4(-aS), for tt'lxd3 16 cxd3 l:lac8 17 l:lacl 'ii'b 8 was
example 7 ... .ib7?! 8 a4! b4 9 aS! and White roughly level in Fressinet-Rotstein, France
will follow up with tt'la4, targeting the weak 2000.
b6-square. c) 9 'ii'e 2!? d6?! (in general I think Black
8 0-0 should wait for f2-f4 before playing this
Or: move; 9 ... b4 10 tt'ld1 tt'lf6 1 1 f4 transposes
a) 8 f4 (this often simply transposes to to note 'e2' to Black's 9th move while
the main line, but what happens if White 9 ...tt'lf6 transposes to note 'b2' to White's
delays castling?) 8 ... -ib7 9 'ii'e2 and now: 9th move) 10 a4!? (this looks quite effective
a1) 9 ...tt'lf6 1 0 i.d2 i.e7 (1 0 ... d6!?) 1 1 eS! here) 1 0... b4 1 1 tt'la2 tt'lf6 (1 t . ..tt'lc6 1 2 .id2
tt'ldS 12 tt'le4 tt'lc6 13 c3 0-0 1 4 0-0 d6 1 S aS 1 3 c3 bxc3 14 tt'lxc3 tt'lf6 1 S tt'lbS looks
exd6 .ixd6 1 6 tt'lxd6 'ii'xd6 1 7 l:lad1 l:lac8 unpleasant for Black) 12 tt'lxb4!? (12 i.f4
18 'ii' f2 and \X'hite has an edge, Tiviakov tt'lc6 1 3 aS i.e7 14 c3 bxc3 1 S tt'lxc3 0-0
Akesson, European Team Ch. 1 999. was unclear in Nijboer-Glek, Groningen
a2) 9 ... d6 10 a4!? b4 11 tt'ld1 tt'lf6 12 tt'lf2 1997) 1 2... dS 13 eS tt'lfd7 (or 13 ... .ixb4 1 4
tt'lbd7 1 3 .id2 (1 3 aS!?, cementing a6 as a exf6 gxf6 1 S .ie3 and Black's king has no
weakness, should be considered) 1 3 ... aS 1 4 safe place to hide) 14 .id2 tt'lxeS (14... 'ii'x eS
c 3 bxc3 1 S i.xc3 .ie7 with a n unclear posi 1S tt'laS!) 1S i.f4 .id6 16 l:lfe1 tt'lxd3
tion, De Firmian-Akesson, Malmo 1 999. (16 ... tt'lf3+ 17 'ii'x f3 .ixf4 18 tt'lxdS i.xh2+
b) 8 .igS i.b7 9 'ii'e 2 tt'lc6 10 .ih4 tt'lf6 19 '1ti>h 1 leaves Black struggling to find a
1 1 .ig3 d6 1 2 0-0 .ie7 1 3 a4 b4 1 4 tt'lb1 good move) 1 7 .ixd6 'ii'x d6 1 8 tt'lxd3 tt'ld7
0-0 was equal in Salov-Nijboer, Wijk aan 19 tt'laS and White has an edge according to

1 65
Sicilian Ka n

Bangiev. to note 'e' to Black's 9th move) 1 0... b4 1 1


An unprovoked 8 ... b4 looks a little pre l2Jd1 ..id6 1 2 h1 ..if4 1 3 i.xf4 'ii'x f4 1 4
mature: 9 lZ:\e2 l2Jf6 1 0 i.f4 i.d6 1 1 ..ixd6 f3 a S 1 S lZ:\e3 0-0 1 6 lZ:\c4 a4 1 7 lZ:\cS i.c6
'ii'xd6 12 l2Jg3 'ii'f4 1 3 a3! bxa3 14 l:txa3 1 8 eS lZ:\dS was equal in Jaracz-Kveinys,
l2Jc6 1 S 'ii'd 2 'ii'xd2 1 6 l2Jxd2 and Black will Rowy 1 999.
have problems with his isolated a-pawn, c) 9 a3 i.b7 10 f4 transposes to note 'c'
Stefansson-Atalik, Reykjavik 1 994. to Black's 9th move.
9 f4 9 b4
. . .

The most natural way forward, but White Displacing the white knight on c3 with
does have other possibilities: out being provoked by a2-a4 is a common
a) 9 l:te 1 ! ? theme in this line. With the d-pawn still on
d7, the b4-pawn has the support of the f8-
bishop. Black can put very early pressure on
e4 and the advance ... d7-dS is always in the
air. Other moves include:
a) 9 ... d6 (this looks risky but the resulting
positions are playable if Black reacts cor
rectly) 10 eS!? (obviously White can con
tinue more slowly with moves such as 10
'ii'e2, 10 'ii' f3 and 1 0 i.d2) 1 0 ... l2Jfd7!
(1 0...dxeS?! 11 fxeS 'ii'x eS? 12 'ii' f3 ! i.d6 1 3
g3 l:ta7 1 4 i.f4 i.cS+ 1 S 'it>g2 wins material
for White, while 1 0 ... b4 1 1 exf6 bxc3 1 2 fS!
eS 1 3 fxg7 i.xg7 1 4 i.e4 l2Jc6 1 S f6 i.f8 1 6
(trying to induce a n early ... d7-d6, which 'ii' f3 ..ib7 1 7 'ii'xc3 was virtually winning for
will be met by a2-a4) 9 ...i.d6!? (9 ... d6 1 0 a4 White in Fiacan-Priehoda, Slovakian Team
b4 1 1 lZ:\a2 lZ:\c6 1 2 i.d2 'ii'b 8 1 3 aS i.e7 1 4 Ch. 2000) 1 1 exd6 i.xd6 1 2 lZ:\e4 i.e7
'ii'e 2 0-0 1 S ..if4 lZ:\eS 1 6 'ii'd2 l2Jxd3 1 7
'ii'xd3 i.d7 looks okay for Black, Mrugala
Scho, correspondence 2000) 1 0 g3 b4
(lO... hS? 1 1 eS i.xeS 1 2 l:txeS 'ii'x eS 13 i.f4
traps the queen while 1 0... ..ib7? loses to 1 1
i.xbS; 1 O... i.eS is possible though) 1 1 lZ:\e2
l2Jc6 12 l2Jed4 l2Jxd4 1 3 l2Jxd4 hS!? (Smirin
assesses the position as equal after
1 3. .. i.b7) 1 4 i.fl h4 1 S i.g2 hxg3 1 6 hxg3
i.b7 and Black has good counterplay, Kas
parov-Smirin, Tel Aviv 1 998.
b) 9 'ii'e 2 and now:
b1) 9 ...d6 1 0 a4 b4 1 1 lZ:\a2 lZ:\c6 1 2 i.d2
'ii'b 8 1 3 c3!? (1 3 aS!?) 1 3. .. bxc3 14 bxc3 and it's more difficult than it looks for
lZ:\eS (14 ...'ii'x b3? 1 S l:tfb 1 'ii'xa4 16 l2Jb4!) White to exploit his initiative. 1 3 a4 b4 1 4
1 S i.c2 'iVc 7 1 6 f4 lZ:\c4 17 i.el i.e7 was ..id2 lZ:\c6 1 5 'it> h 1 0-0 1 6 'ii'hS g 6 1 7 'ii'h6
fine for Black, Siklosi-Pavasovic, Austrian l2Jf6 gave Black no problems in Sanz
League 200 1 . Alonso-Magem Badals, Salamanca 1 998. 1 3
b2) 9. . .i.b7 1 0 i.gS!? (10 f4 transposes fS is more direct, but 1 3. . .exfS 1 4 l:txfS lZ:\e5

1 66
5 tD c 3 b 5 6 i. d3 'il b 6 ! ?

1 5 l:.fl tDbc6 also looks okay for Black. e 1 1) 1 1 i.d2 tDbd7 1 2 l:tae 1 b4 1 3 tiJ d1
b) 9 ... ..tb7 and now: eS (13 ...i.e7 transposes to note 'a2' ro
b 1) 1 0 eS b4 1 1 tDe2 transposes to 1 1 eS White's 1 2th move in Game 52) 14 'iir>h t aS
in the main game. 1 5 tiJ2 i.e7 1 6 t2Jg4 0-0 was equal in
b2) 10 'ii'f3 d6 1 1 i.d2 tiJbd7 12 ael Boudre-J .Ivanov, Toulon 1 999.
g6! (1 2 ... i.e7 transposes to Game 5 1 , but e12) 1 1 eS! dxeS (l l ...b4, l l ...tiJdS and
here Black can exploit the fact that the 1 1 ...tiJfd7 all come into consideration) 1 2
bishop still remains on f8 to guarantee a fxeS tiJfd7 1 3 i.f4 b4 1 4 tDe4 tDxeS 1 5
rock-solid kingside) 1 3 'ii'h 3 i.g7 14 t2Jd4 'ifr>hl tiJbd7 1 6 tiJgS i.d6 1 7 tDxf7! with a
0-0 1 5 tiJf3 b4 1 6 tiJd 1 tDcS and I prefer clear advantage to White, Kreiman-Dunn
Black, Berzinsh-Movsesian, Czech League ington, Hampstead 1998.
1 999. e2) 10 ...b4 11 tiJd t aS (l l ...dS 12 exdS
c) 10 a3 d6 1 1 'ii'e2 tiJbd7 12 i.d2 i.e? tDxdS 13 fS eS 1 4 tDe3 tiJd7 1 5 tDxdS
transposes to Nagatz-Dautov (Game 52). i.xdS 16 i.e3 i.e? was unclear in Fressi
d) 10 i.e3 d6 1 1 eS!? dxeS 12 fxeS and net-Kengis, Germany 2001) 12 tiJf2 tDc6 1 3
here Black must be careful: i.e3 a 4 1 4 tiJd2 i.e? 1 5 t2Jg4 d 6 1 6 tDc4
d l ) 12 ... 'ii'x e5 13 i.f4 'ii'h S 14 tiJaS 0-0 17 tiJb6 aS 18 tDc4 l:.aa8 19 tiJb6 aS
(Chuchelov) gives White good compensa 20 tDc4 aa8 21 tiJb6 'l2- 1l2 Fressinet
tion for the pawn. Smirin, Saint Vincent 2000.
d2) 1 2...tiJfd7? 13 xf7!! 'ifr>xf7 14 'ii'h S+
'iir>g8 15 l:.fl g6 (l S ...tiJxeS 16 l:.xf8+! 'ifr>xf8
1 7 i.cS+ 'iir>g8 1 8 'ii'e 8 mate) 1 6 i.xg6
tDxeS 1 7 tDe4! i.xe4 1 8 i.xe4 tDbc6

1 0 tDe2
10 tiJbt doesn't look particularly threat
ening: for example 1 0... i.b7 1 1 'ii'e 2 i.e?
1 2 a3 aS 1 3 axb4 axb4 14 xa8 i.xa8 1 5
(Polzin-Chuchelov, Dresden 1 999) 19 tiJ1d2 tDc6 1 6 e S tiJdS and Black was very
tlJd4! tlJxd4 20 i.xd4 i.cS 21 'ii'g S+ 'ii'g7 solidly placed in Sorensen-Goldin, New
22 'ii'xg7+ 'ifr>xg7 23 i.xcS ad8 24 i.e?! York 2000.
t2Jg4 25 i.xd8 xd8 26 el l:td2 27 i.d3 I can find no examples of 10 tDa4!? pre
and White wins - Chuchelov. sumably because the knight is in grave dan
d3) 12 ... tiJdS (the safest) 1 3 tDxdS i.xdS ger of being trapped - but in fact the varia
1 4 i.f4 t2Jc6 1 5 'ii'h S tDb4 (Chuchelov) tions are not clear cut at all, for example:
gives Black good counterplay. a) 10 ... i.b7 1 1 eS tiJdS 12 a3 bxa3 13 c4.
e) 1 0 'ii'e 2 and now: b) 10 ... 'ii'c 6 1 1 eS ..tb7 1 2 2 'ii'xa4
e 1) 1 O... d6 with a further split: (12...tiJdS 1 3 tDaS 'ii'xa4 14 t2Jxb7) 1 3 exf6

167
Sicilian Kan

gxf6 1 4 e3. logically continues to gang up on e4 by


In both cases the positions are unclear. threatening to dislodge the knight with ... h5-
1 o . .i.. b 7 1 1 lt:lg3
. . h4.
The major alternative here is 1 1 eS!? lLJdS 1 2 1i'e2
(t t ...it'c6 12 :f3 doesn't help Black) 1 2 12 eS? gets White into trouble:
lLig3 (12 lLibd4 cS 1 3 Wh 1 lZ:Ic6 1 4 lZ:Ixc6 1 2...it'b6+ 1 3 Wht h4 t 4 lLif5 (14 :f3 hxg3
it'xc6 1 5 e4 it'c7 was fine for Black in 15 e3 nxh2 + 16 Wg 1 :xg2 + 17 Wxg2
Braylovsky-Smirin, Internet [blitz] 2000) it'xe3 0-1 was the end of Koskela-Seeman,
Myyrmanni 1 999) 14 ... h3! (threatening
mate!) 1 5 lLie3 lLidS and White's position is
on the verge of collapse.
1 2 . . . h4 1 3 lLlh 1 a5!?
Preparing to harass the other knight with
... a5-a4. Black's 'pincer' movement in this
game IS unpress1ve.
1 4 lt:lf2 lt::Ja 6 1 5 .i.. e3
15 eS!? lLidS 16 :dt a4 17 lZ:Id4 lZ:Ic5 is
unclear according to Maryasin.
1 5 . . . a4 1 6 lt::Jd 4?!
Maryasin criticises this move, suggesting
instead 1 6 lZ:Id2!? lLJcS 17 :act aiming to
and now: play c2-c3.
a) 1 2... it'b6+?! 1 3 Whl lLie3 14 xe3 it'xe3 1 6 . . .lt::J c 5 1 7 e5 lt::Jd 5 1 8 lt::Je4 lt::Jxe4 1 9
1 5 lLih5 with a clear plus (Svidler, Lukin). .i.. xe4 lt::Jc 3! 20 bxc3 .i.. xe4 2 1 cxb4 h3
b) 1 2... d6!? 1 3 fS!? exfS 14 lLixfS dxeS 1 5 22 lt::Jb 5 1fc6 23 .i.. c 5?!
it'g4 with compensation for the pawn. This allows White's kingside structure to
c) 1 2...e7 1 3 it'e2 1 3 ...g6 1 4 lZ:Ie4 lLic6 crumble. Better is 23 g3 although Black
1 5 Wh1 aS 1 6 c4 bxc3 17 bxc3 fS (1 7 ... a4! is keeps the advantage after 23 ... xb4.
stronger) 1 8 exf6 lLixf6 (Lukin-Khalifman, 23 . . . .i..x c5 + 24 bxc5 'iix c5 + 25 .l:!.f2
Moscow 1 997) and here Svidler gives 1 9 .i..x g2 26 lt::Jd 6 + <li>f8
lLixf6+ xf6 20 fS with a n edge to White.
1 1 . . . h5!

Black is a pawn ahead and has a safer


king. This adds up to a decisive advantage.
A move very pleasing on the eye. Black 27 .l:.b1 .i..c 6 28 c4 .l:.h6 29 'itf1 'itg8 30

1 68
5 CiJ c 3 b 5 6 i. d3 il b 6 ! ?

ikd3 lU8 3 1 e2 f 6 3 2 ike3 ikxe3 + 3 3 b3) 8. . .lt::lc 6 9 lle1 d 6 (9. . .lt::lge7? loses a
'it>xe3 fxe5 34 fxe5 l:.xf2 35 'it>xf2 l:.h5 pawn to 10 ..txbS!) 10 a4 b4 1 1 lt::la2 lt::l f6
36 l:.e 1 l:.g5 37 l:e2 'it>h7 38 'it>e1 'it>g6 12 ..td2 aS 13 c3 bxc3 14 lt::l xc3 ..te7 1 S
3 9 'it>d2 l:.g2 40 ltte3 g5 0-1 tUbS 'i*'b8 16 ..tf4 eS 17 l:!.ct ..td7 18 ..tgs
r-------,. 0-0 19 ..tc4 lt::lb4 20 b3 and White is more
Game 68 active, Ponomariov-Milov, Biel 2000.
Grischuk-Smirin 8 o-o
FIDE World Ch., New Delhi 2000 Or 8 eS 'it'b8 9 ..tf4?! (9 0-0 transposes
to the note to White's 9th move) 9 ... fS!
1 e4 c5 2 CiJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 CiJxd4 a6 (preventing lt::le4 and preparing ... lt::le7-g6;
5 CiJc3 b5 6 i.d3 ilb6 7 CiJf3 now the e-pawn is in danger of eventually
being rounded up) 10 'i*'e2 lt::lge7 1 1 h3
lt::lb4 12 0-0 ..tb7 13 llfd1 lt::l xd3 14 'i*'xd3
'i*'c7 1 S a3 h6 16 lt::ld4 'i*'c4 1 7 'it'g3 gS 1 8
b 3 'i*'cS 1 9 ..tel ..tg7 20 f4 l:!.g8 and Black
had a big advantage in Ashley-Smirin, Los
Angeles 2000.

7 . . . CiJc6
Or:
a) Against 7 ... ..tb7?! I again like 8 a4! (for
8 0-0 see 6 ... ..tb7 7 0-0 'it'b6 8 lt::l f3 in Chap
ter 8) 8 ... b4 9 aS, exploiting the queen's
position on b6. White keeps an advantage
after 9 ... 'it'c7 1 0 lt::la4 as 1 O ... 'it'xaS? 1 1 ..te3, 8 . . .ilb8 !?
intending lt::lb 6, is very strong. The idea of this move is twofold. Firstly,
b) 7 ... 'it'c7 8 0-0 (8 eS?! lt::le 7! 9 0-0 lt::lg6 Black takes the sting out of a possible a2-a4,
1 0 l:!.e1 ..tb7 1 1 ..txg6 hxg6 1 2 lt::le4 ..txe4 ... bS-b4, a4-aS sequence by vacating the b6-
1 3 l:!.xe4 dS 1 4 llg4 lt::ld7 was slightly better square. Secondly, Black's queen once again
for Black in Hector-Movsesian, Malmo controls the important b8-h2 diagonal. The
1 999) and now: queen chooses b8 as opposed to c7 as Black
b1) For 8 ... ..tb7 see 6 ... ..tb7 7 0-0 'i*'b6 8 wants to develop with ... lt::lge7 without al
lt::l f3 'it'c7 in Chapter 8. lowing a ..txbS tactic.
b2) 8 ... d6 allows White to strike favoura Other tries include:
bly on the queenside: 9 a4! b4 1 0 lt::la2 lt::lc6 a) 8 ... 'i*'c7 transposes to note 'b' to
1 1 ..td2 l:!.b8 1 2 c3 bxc3 1 3 ..txc3 lt::l f6 1 4 Black's 7th move.
b4! ..te7 1 S 'i*'e2 'i*'b7 1 6 b S axbS 1 7 axbS b) 8 ... lt::lge7 9 l:.c1 (9 a4!? b4 1 0 aS lt::lxaS
lt::ld8 18 lt::lb4 with a clear advantage, Po 1 1 lt::la4 'i*'c7 12 ..tc3 [Adams] looks dan
nomariov-Garcia Paolicchi, Istanbul Olym gerous: 12 ... l:!.b8 13 lUeS regains the pawn
piad 2000. with an advantage - 13 ... dS 14 lt::lxa6 ..txa6

1 69
Sicilian Ka n

l S i.xa6 dxe4 1 6 tt:Jd4 looks very dodgy for i.xbS) 1 7 ... 'ii'd 8 1 8 'ii'xa6 and, with bS
Black) 9 ... tt:Jg6?! (9 ...'ii'b8 reaches the main dropping, it's unlikely that Black will sur
line) 1 0 lDdS! (1 0 a4? i.cS! t t i.e3 1f.xe3 1 2 vive .
.i:.xe3 b4 1 3 lZJdS 'ii'd 8 1 4 a S 0-0 l S tt:Jb6 b) 9 ... tt:Jge7 1 0 i.e4 (10 i.f4?! fS! 1 1 h4
.l:tb8 was unclear in Adams-Kengis, Euro tt:Jb4 12 i.h2 1i.b7 1 3 i.e2 lDbdS 14 lDd4?!
pean Team Ch. 2001) 1 0 ... 'ii'b 7 (10 ... 'ii'b 8? 14 ... tt:Jxc3 t S bxc3 tt:JdS was much better
1 1 i.e3 and l O ... exdS? 1 1 exdS+ tt:Jce7 1 2 for Black in Shabalov-Smirin, Los Angeles
i.xg6 hxg6 1 3 d 6 [Adams] are both good 2000; for 1 0 .l:te1 see the note to White's
for White) 1 1 a4 and White's position must 1 0th move) 10 ... Ji.b7 1 1 .l:tet 'ii'c 7!
be favourable. (t t ...tt:Jg6?! 12 h4! i.cS 13 hS tt:Jge7 14 i.d3
c) 8 ... d6 9 a4 b4 10 aS! (again this idea tt:Jb4 l S tt:Je4 tt:Jxd3 1 6 'ii'xd3 i.xe4 1 7
looks promising) t O...tt:JxaS 1 1 lDa4 'ii'c7 1 2 'ii'xe4 h 6 1 8 b 4 i.b6 1 9 'ii'g4 was pleasant
i.e3 .l:tb8 1 3 lDb6 .l:txb6 1 4 lhaS .l:tb8 t S for White, Ashley-Goldin, Connecticut
'iVa 1 tt:Jf6 1 6 i.xa6 i.xa6 ( 1 6. . .tt:Jxe4 1 7 2001) 12 a3 fS!? 1 3 exf6 gxf6 14 tt:Jd4 tt:Jxd4
i.a7!) 1 7 .l:txa6 i.e7 1 8 .l:ta7 .l:tb7 1 9 .l:ta8+ l S 'ii'xd4 i.g7 16 a4 and in this unclear
was better for White in Kuzmin-Rogovski, position the players agreed a draw, Baklan
Ordzhonikidze 2000. Smirin, Panormo 200 1 .
9 .l:!.e 1 9 . . ltlge7
.

Also possible is the immediate 9 eS!?

1 0 i.e3
gaining space in the centre and the e4- 10 eS is again possible: 1 0 ...lDg6 t t i.xg6
square. Of course, the pawn on eS can be hxg6 1 2 i.f4 fS 1 3 a4 b4 1 4 tDe2 i.b7 l S
come vulnerable: 'ifd 2 it'c7 1 6 .l:tad 1 lDaS 1 7 b 3 .l:tc8
a) Grabbing the pawn with 9 ...tt:JxeS is (17 ... 1i.xf3!?) 18 tt:Jed4 i.dS 1 9 .l:te3 'ii'b7
too risky: 1 0 lDxeS 'ifxeS 1 1 'ii' f3 dS with a complex position in Simacek
(t t ....l:ta7 12 i.f4 'ii' f6 13 'ii'e 3 and Black Antoniewski, Prerove 200 1 .
has no defence against the twin threats of 1 0 . . . d6
'ii'xa7 and i.gS) 12 i.f4 'ii'f6 (12...'ii'd4 1 3 tO ...lDg6 is met by 1 1 tt:JdS!.
a4! b4 1 4 i.bS+! i.d7 t S i.xd7+ xd7 1 6 1 1 ii'd2 ltlg6 1 2 ltld4 ltlxd4 1 3 i.xd4
l:tad 1 'ifa7 1 7 tt:JxdS and White crashes ltle5 1 4 f4 ltlc6 1 5 i.f2 1J..e7 1 6 ltld5!
through) 13 tt:JxdS exdS 14 l:tfe t + i.e6 This energetic move secures an advan
(14 ... tt:Je7? t S 'ii'x dS 'ii'x f4 1 6 i.xbS+ axbS tage for White.
17 'ii'c 6+ d8 18 .l:tad t + mates) t S 'ii'x dS 1 6 . . . exd5 1 7 exd5 ltle5
.l:td8 1 6 'ii'c 6+ .l:td7 17 .l:tad 1 (threatening Black correctly returns the piece. At-

1 70
5 l:iJc3 b5 6 i.. d3 b 6 ! ?

tempts to hold on to the extra material fail: 2 8 'ii'xg4 :xh7 29 :g3 'i;e8 3 0 'ii'g 8+ 'i;d7
a) 17 ... 4Jd8 1 8 l:.xe7+! 'i;xe7 1 9 :e1 + 31 'ii'x h7.
1; [8 (or 1 9 ...'i;d7 20 .i.f5+ 'i;c7 2 1 'ili'a5+ 1 8 fxe5 dxe5 1 9 e2 0-0 20 i..d 4! exd4
'i;b7 22 'ili'b6 mate) 20 'ii'e3 tLle6 21 f5 and 21 xe7 g6 22 f6 i.. b 7 23 d6 i..d 5
Black is unlikely to survive.
b) 1 7 ... tLla7 1 8 l:.e3 .i.d7 1 9 :ae1 tLlc8
20 .i.h4! f6 21 'ili'e2 'ii'b 6 22 'i;h 1 'ii'd8 23
.i.xf6! gxf6 24 'ii'h 5+

24 xd4?
24 i.e4! 'ii'b 7 25 .i.xd5 'ii'x d5 26 :ed1
looks very good for White. Now Black is
allowed back into the game.
and White has a winning attack, for ex 24 . . .i..e6 25 .l:!.xe6!? fxe6 26 c4 bxc4 27
ample 24 ... 1;f8 25 'ii'h 6+ 1;[7 26 .i.xh7 ..txc4 h5 28 .l:!.c 1 .l:!.a7 29 ..txe6 + Wh7
(threatening :g3) 26 ... i.g4 27 'Wg6+ 1;[8 30 h4 l:.b7 31 d7 l:.xb2 32 .i.h3 Yz- Yz

1 71
Sicilian Kan

Summary
Is the modern 6 .. .'ii'b6 here to stay? Early results have been very favourable for Black, who
scores a very impressive 56% on my Kan database. However, this figure can in some part be
explained by the tendency of strong players to play this sharp line in order to beat relatively
weak players.
In the early days of 6 .. .'ii'b6, white players almost exclusively played the 'robotic' 7 lt:lb3,
but more recently the values of 7 i.e3 and 7 lt:\f3 are being appreciated. I expect there to be
many more developments in these two lines, especially in the underrated 7 lt:\f3. At the
moment I would say that this move is White's best chance finding some advantage in this
line.

1 e4 c5 2 itJfJ e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 ltJxd4 a6 5 lLlcJ b5 6 i.dJ 'i'b6 7 i.eJ


7 lt:\b3 (D) - Game 67
7 ltJf3 - Game 68
7 i.c5 8 i.e2
. . .

8 'ii'g4!? (D) - Game 66


8 . lLlc6 9 ltJxc6 dxc6
. .

9 ... i.xe3 10 fxe3 dxc6 1 1 'ii'd 4 'ii'xd4 12 exd4 eS (D)


1 3 dxeS - Game 64
1 3 dS - Game 65
1 0 i.xc5 'i'xc5 - Game 63

7 lt:\b3 8 'ii'g4 1 2. . . e5

1 72
CHAPTER EIGHT I
5 tt:Jc3 b 5 : Sixth M ove
Alternatives

1 e4 c5 2 tt:'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt:'lxd4 a6 The amusmg miniature Hector-Vidar


5 tt:'lc3 b5 sson, Reykjavik 1 996 is not a good advert
Here we look at alternatives for White to for this system: 6 .ie3 .ig7 7 lDb3! lDe7?
6 .id3 after 5 lDc3 bS, plus alternatives for (7 ... b5 should be played, although White is
Black to 6 ...it'b6 after 6 .id3. We will also still doing well after 8 .id4) 8 lDa4! lDbc6?
look at earlier choices for Black. 9 .tb6! 1 -0.
1 e4 c5 2 tt:'lf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 tt:'lxd4 a6 d) 5 ... tt'b6 has some similarities to 5 ... b5
5 tt:'lc3 b5 6 .id3 tt'b6. After 6 lDb3 Black drops back
Black's other options at move five: with 6 ... tt'c7 and follows up with typical
a) S ... d6 moves out of Kan territory as Kan developing moves. However, with the
Black signals his intentions of transposing knight on d4 not attacked, White has more
to the Scheveningen with 6 ...lDf6. options. I like the move 6 a3!? with the fol
b) S ... .icS 6 .ie3 tt'b6 transposes to lowing lines:
S ...tt'b6 below. d 1) 6 ... lDc6 7 .ic3 .ic5 (7 ... tt'xb2?? loses
c) 5 ... g6?! makes less sense against 5 lDc3 the queen to 8 lDa4!; this is one of the
than it does against 5 .id3 as the knight on points of a2-a3) 8 lDa4 it'a5+ 9 c3 .ixd4 1 0
d4 is still protected by the queen. .ixd4 lDxd4 1 1 tt'xd4 e 5 1 2 tt'b4 tt'xb4 1 3
axb4 and White has a pleasant ending due
to Black's vulnerable dark squares.
d2) 6 ... .ic5 7 .ie3 lDc6 transposes into
note 'd1'.
d3) 6 ... lDe7 7 .ie3 lDg6 8 h4 (Fritz likes
8 lDxe6! here: 8 ... tt'xe6 9 lDd5 .id6 10 lDb6
and White regains the material with interest)
8 ...tt'c7 9 h5 lDe5 1 0 f4 lDec6 1 1 lDb3 d6 1 2
tt'd2 lDd7 1 3 0-0-0 and White was better in
Short-] .Polgar, Novgorod 1 996.
6 i.d3
Alternatively:
a) 6 g3 is equally playable against 5 ...b5 as

1 73
Sicilian Kan

it is against S ...'ii'c 7. Play tends to be put together), but is quite harmless. Black
sharper, though, as Black can achieve very can use the 'extra' tempo to reach a com
quick counterplay against the e4-pawn (sec fortable position. One possible line runs
Game 71). 6 ... i..b7 7 i..d 3 'ii'b 6!? (or simply 7...'ii'c 7 8
b) 6 i..e2 i..b7 7 i.. f3 'ii'c 7 8 0-0 l2Jc6 0-0 l2Jf6) 8 i..e3 i..c S 9 l2Jce2 'ii'c 7 and
transposes to the note to White's 8th move Black will attack e4 with ... l2Jf6.
in Game 59. c) 6 g4!? is extremely rare but is still
c) 6 i..e3 i..b7 7 f3 signals White's inten worth a mention. White plays as with 6 g3,
tions of playing an 'English Attack'. but with more space and a larger 'spike' on
the kingside. The line 6 ... i.b7 7 i..g2 b4 8
l2Jce2 sees another point of the 6 g4 - the
knight can come to g3 to defend e4. After
8 ... l2Jf6 9 l2Jg3 dS 1 0 eS we have the follow
ing possibilities:
e1) 10 ...l2Jfd7 1 1 f4 i..c S 12 i..e3 'ii'b6 1 3
0-0 l2Jc6 1 4 c 3 bxc3 1 5 bxc3 lLJaS was un
clear in Boudre-Gofshtein, St. Affrique
1 999.
e2) 10 ... l2Je4!? 11 'ii'e2 l2Jxg3 12 hxg3
l2Jc6 1 3 l2Jxc6 i..xc6 1 4 i..e3 i..b S 1 5 'ii'd2
.l:t.c8 16 i..d4 'ii'c7 and Black has reasonable
counterplay down the c-ftle, Coil-Dumont,
As we have seen before, this set-up is Sao Paulo 1 999.
generally not very effective against the Kan, 6 i.b7
. . .

although with this particular move order it's Originally this was Black's most popular
certainly playable. Here are two possible response to 6 i..d 3, but in the last few years
responses for Black. it has been taken over by 6 ..."ikb6. Other
cl) 7..."ikc7 8 "ikd2 l2Jf6 9 g4 b4!? (9 ... h6 moves include:
10 0-0-0 l2Jc6 transposes to a line of the a) 6 ...d6 often transposes into lines dis
Tairnanov) 10 l2Jce2 dS! 1 1 gS l2Jfd7 1 2 cussed earlier, for example 7 0-0 l2Jf6 8 'ii'e 2
exdS i..x dS 1 3 l2Jf4 l2Jb6 1 4 i..d 3 l2J8d7 1 5 i..e 7 9 <iii>h 1 'ii'c7 10 f4 l2Jbd7 1 1 i..d2 i..b 7
lLJxdS lLJxdS 1 6 i..e4 l2J7b6 1 7 'ii'e 2 i..c S 1 8 and we have transposed to Pikula-Cvitan
i.. f2 0-0 and Black was fine i n Kharlov (Game 55).
Totsky, St. Petersburg 1 998. As is common An independent try for White is 8 .l:t.e 1
in these lines, Black's ability to play ... d7-d5 i..e 7 9 a4!? b4 1 0 l2Ja2 'ii'b 6 1 1 c3 bxc3 1 2
in one go gives him an easy game. l2Jxc3 0-0 1 3 i..c 2 i..d7 1 4 a S 'ii'b4 1 5 'ii'd2
c2) 7 ... l2Jc6 8 l2Jxc6 (8 'ii'd2 l2Jge7!? 9 g4 l:tc8 which led to an equal position in Tatai
l2Jxd4 10 i..xd4 l2Jc6 1 1 i..e 3 lLJeS looked Bologan, Reggio Emilia 1 996.
okay for Black in Grabarska-Radziewicz, b) 6 ... i..c 5!? is very similar to 6 ... 'ii'b 6 and
Polish Girls Ch. 1 994) 8 ... i..x c6 9 'ii'd2 l2Jf6 often transposes, for example 7 i..e3 'ii'b 6
1 0 0-0-0 'ii'c 7 1 1 <iii>b 1 i..e 7 1 2 g4 b4 1 3 (sec Chapter 7). After 7 l2Jb3 Black must
l2Je2 d S 14 g5 l2Jd7 1 5 l2Jd4 dxe4 1 6 f4 i..b7 decide whether to drop the bishop back to
17 fS eS 1 8 l2Jb3 0-0-0 with an unclear posi a7 or e7, both leading to lines similar to
tion in Lie-Yakovich, Bergen 2000. ones we've already discussed. I can't find
d) 6 a3 is a surprisingly common move any examples of 7 l2Jf3 but this looks quite
(it's seen more often than 6 i..e 2 and 6 i..e 3 playable too.

1 74
5 Ci:J c 3 b 5 : Six th M o v e A lt e rn a tives

c) 6 ... li:Je7 intends to offer an exchange Now once again Black has a choice of
of knights with either ... li:Jec6 or ... li:Jbc6. moves:
a) 7 ... li:Je7 again intends to offer an ex
change of knights with ... li:Jc6 (see Game
70).
b) 7...li'b6 is a similar idea to 6 ... li'b6 and
is discussed in Game 69.
c) 7 ...'Wc7 transposes to Game 56.
d) 7 ... d6 and now:
d 1) 8 li'e2 li:Jf6 9 a4!? (9 f4 li:Jbd7 10
h 1 'ir'c7 11 ..td2 ..te7 is your rypical set
up - sec Game 55) 9 ... b4 10 li:Ja2 dS! 11 eS
li:Je4 12 c3 li:Jd7 13 ..tf4 bxc3 14 li:Jxc3
li:JdcS looks okay for Black, Vogt-Bonsch,
Cottbus 1983.
White has the following choices: d2) 8 l:tc 1 !? li:Jf6 9 a4 b4 10 li:JdS!? cxdS
c1) 7 f4!? li:Jbc6 8 li:Jf3 (it makes sense to 1 1 exdS+ d7 12 c4 with a very unclear
avoid the exchange since now Black's position, but White obviously has a danger
knight on e7 will be forced to move again) ous initiative for the piece, David-Lobron,
8 ... d5 9 eS b4 1 0 li:Ja4 ..td7 1 1 li:JcS li:JfS 1 2 Amsterdam 1 996.
li:Jxd7 'ir'xd7 1 3 ..txfS and I prefer White, e) 7 ... li:Jc6 8 li:Jxc6 and now:
Reinderman-A.Sokolov, Wijk aan Zee 1 993. el) 8... dxc6 9 eS li:Je7 1 0 ifhS! 'ifc7 1 1
c2) 7 0-0 and here Black has two options: l:tel li:Jg6 (1 1 ...c5 1 2 ..txbS+! axbS 1 3 li:Jxb5
c21) 7 ... li:Jec6 8 li:Jb3 d6 9 f4 ..te7 10 it'c6 14 li:Jd6+ d8 1 5 li:Jxb7+ ifxb7 1 6
..td2 li:Jd7 11 'if'B (1 1 ifhS!?) 1 1 ...0-0 1 2 ifxf7 it'd7 1 7 ..tgS c8 1 8 l:tad1 li:JdS 1 9
l:tael ifc7 1 3 ifh3 with good attacking ifxd7+ xd7 20 c 4 i s winning for White)
chances on the kingside. 1 2 ..txg6 fxg6 13 'iVg4 'iVf7 14 li:Je4 'tW fS 1 5
c22) 7 ... li:Jbc6 8 li:Jb3!? li:Jg6 9 f4 ..te7 10 'Wh4 c S 1 6 li:Jd6+ ..txd6 1 7 exd6 0-0 1 8
ifhS! (with no knight on f6, this is a threat ..tgS and the passed pawn o n d 6 gives
ening place for the queen) 10 ... d6 1 1 ..te3 White the edge, Emms-Crouch, British
0-0 1 2 l:tf3 and White has an automatic League 1 997.
attack, Glauser-Polugaevsky, Havana 1966. e2) 8 .....txc6 9 'ifc2 ifb8!? (9 ...ifc7?! 1 0
7 0-0 a4 b4 1 1 li:JdS!) 1 0 a4 b4 1 1 li:JdS ..td6 12
h3 aS 1 3 ..te3 ..txdS 1 4 exdS li:Jf6 1 5 dxc6
fxe6 16 l:tad 1 0-0 17 ..td4 again with an
edge to White, A.Sokolov-Ionescu, Naujac
1 999.

Game 69
Svidler-Milov
Bie/ 2000

1 e4 c5 2 Ci:Jf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Ci:Jxd4 a6


5 Ci:Jc3 b5 6 .td3 .tb7 7 0-0 'i!fb6
With the same motive as 6 ... 'i'b6, but the
insertion of 0-0 and ... i.b7 creates some

1 75
Sicilian Kan

important differences. 1 3 b2
8 e3
8 l2Jf3 'ii'c 7 9 .l:i.e1 i.c5 10 e5 f5! 1 1 exf6
lLlxf6 1 2 lLle4 i.xe4! 1 3 ..ixe4 lLlc6 was
equal in Adams-Topalov, Tilburg 1 998.
For 8 lLlb3 'ii'c 7 see the note to Black's
8th move in Game 67.
B . . .c5

1 3 . . .tt'lc6?
Black can restrict White's advantage with
the variation 1 3 ... bxc4 1 4 .l:i.ct d5 1 5 exd5
..ixd5 16 ..ixc4 ..ixc4 17 'ir'c2 lLlbd7 1 8
'ii'xc4.
1 4 cxb5 axb5 ?! 1 5 tt'lc3 tt'ld4 1 6 ..txb5
0-0
9 tt'lce2!
9 ..ie2? doesn't work now: 9 ... lLlc6 1 0
lLlxc6 ..ixe3 1 1 lLle5 ..id4 1 2 lLlf3 ..ixc3 1 3
bxc3 ..ixe4 and Black was a clear pawn
ahead in Teuschler-Pilaj, Graz 1 999.
9 . . .tt'lf6
A natural move but this might already be
a mistake. After this White has a route to an
advantage. Alternatives are:
a) 9 ... lLlc6 10 c3 lLlf6 1 1 b4 i.xd4 1 2
lLlxd4 'ii'c7 (Rohde-Benjamin, Estes Park
1 987) 1 3 lLlxc6 ..ixc6 14 f3 0-0 (or 14 ... d5
1 5 exd5 lLlxd5 1 6 ..ic5!) 1 5 'ii'e 2 d5 1 6 ..ic5
dxe4 1 7 fxe4 l:tfd8 1 8 e5 (Svidler) and 1 7 d3
White's bishops promise an edge. The smoke has cleared, leaving White
b) 9 ... 'ii'c 7 (this may be best) 1 0 i.xb5!? with many pluses: an extra pawn, two
(10 .l:i.ct is quieter) 10 ... ..ixe4 1 1 lLlc3 ..ib7 passed pawns on the queenside and two
12 ..id3 lLlf6 unclear - Svidler. bishops. This all adds up to a decisive lead.
1 0 b4! xd4 1 7 . . .l:l.fd8 1 8 l:te 1 d5 1 9 exd5 xd5 20
10 ... ..ixb4 1 1 lLlf5! ..ic5 12 lLlxg7+ 'Otf8 tt'lxd5 l:l.xd5 21 l:tc1 '*kb7 22 ..tc4 l:td7
13 ..ih6 'Otg8 1 4 lLlg3 is good for White. 23 a3 l:tadB 24 '*kd3 e4 25 '*ke3 h6 26
1 1 ..txd4 '*kc7 1 2 c4! e5 h3 l:td6 27 ..tf1 l:td5 28 l:tc4 tt'lf5 29
1 2... bxc4 13 .l:i.ct d5 1 4 exd5 exd5 1 5 .l:i.e1 '*kc 1 l:I.Bd6 30 ..txf6 J:l.xf6 31 l:tcxe4 '*kb6
lLlbd7 1 6 lLlg3+ 'Otf8 1 7 'ir'f3 (Svidler) gives 32 l:l.e5 tt'lg3 33 '*kcB + J:l.dB 34 '*kxdB +
White a strong attack. 1 -0

1 76
5 !U c 3 b 5 : Six th Mo ve A lterna tives

Game 70
W. Watson-Mortensen
Heming 1 99 1

1 e4 c 5 2 !Uf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 !Uxd4 a6


5 !Uc3 b5 6 i.d3 i.b7 7 0-0 !Ue7 8
i.g5!

1 5 . . . i.xc5!
15 ..."i!fb6 16 f5! is very strong, for exam-
ple 1 6 ... i;_xc5 1 7 fxg6+ hxg6 (or 1 7 ... 'it>e8
1 8 g7! J.xe3+ 19 'it>h 1 l:tg8 20 ifxf6) 1 8
l:txf6+! 'it>xf6 1 9 ifxh8+ 'it>e7 20 d 4 i;_b4
21 J.g5+ 'it>d6 22 ife5+ 'it>c6 23 l:tcl and
White wins.
1 6 i.xc5 d6 1 7 i.e3 ii'f8 1 8 ii'h3 !Ud7
A clever move to induce some sort of 1 9 l:tae1 l:tc8 20 f5! gxf5 21 i.h6 'i!fe8
weakness on Black's kingside. 22 !Ud5! l:tg8
8 . . . f6 Black is forced to give up material as
This looks ugly but Black is struggling for 22... exd5 loses after 23 exd5! lt:Je5 (or
alternatives. 23 ... "ir'g8 24 ifxf5 l:tc7 25 l:te3) 24 ifxf5
a) 8 ... "i!fc7? loses to 9 J.xb5!. "ir'e7 25 ifh5+ 'it>g8 26 l:txe5 dxe5 27 l:tf3.
b) 8 ..."i!fb6?! 9 J.e3 is problematic for 23 ii'h5 + l:tg6 24 exf5 i.xd5 25 i.f4
Black as 9 ..."i!fc7 is again hit by 1 0 J.xb5!. e5 26 fxg6 + hxg6 27 ii'h7 + '>t>e6 28
c) 8 ... h6 (this is better than the previous i.e3 f5 29 l:tc1 l:txc 1 30 l:txc 1 !Uf6 3 1
two alternatives but still leaves a weakness 'i!t'g7 f4 3 2 i.f2 i.xa2 3 3 l:tc7 !Ud5 34
on the kingside) 9 J.e3 lt:Jec6 10 lLlxc6 l:ta7 i.b1 35 d4 e4 36 l:txa6 e3 37
lt:Jxc6 (1 O... dxc6 1 1 e5! looks good for ii'e5 + '>t>d7 38 'i!fxd6 + 1 -0
White) 1 1 f4 "ir'c7 1 2 e5 lLlb4 1 3 J.e4 with a
clear advantage according to Ciric. Game 7 1
9 i.e3 !Uec6 1 0 !Ub3!? Thiei-Chuchelov
1 0 lt:Jxc6 also promises an edge: Munster 1 995
1 0 ... lt:Jxc6 1 1 f4 i;_e7 1 2 ifh5+ ! g6 1 3 ifh6
'it>f7 1 4 l:tad 1 (Ciric) and Black's king will 1 e4 c5 2 !Uf3 e6 3 !Uc3 a6 4 d4 cxd4
find it difficult to find a safe haven. 5 !Uxd4 b5 6 g3 i.b7 7 i.g2 b4
1 O . . . !Ue5 1 1 f4 !Uxd3 1 2 cxd3 i.e7 1 3
see following diagram
'i!fh5 + ! g6 1 4 ii'h6
White has a clear advantage. He has a Black can play this move now or later
lead in development and Black's king will and usually the positions transpose, but
soon be the subject of an attack. there are a few subtle differences.
14 . . .'>t>f7 1 5 lUeS! The main alternative is 7 ... lt:Jf6 and now:

1 77
Sicilian Kan

(Sutovsky) gives White good compensation


for the small material deficit.
b) 1 2... lLif6 13 e3 (Sutovsky-Har Zvi,
Israel 1 998) and here Sutovsky suggests
13 ... i.xd4!? 14 i.xd4 0-0! 1 5 cS :r.e8 1 6
i.xb4 dS. Black will follow up with . . .lLic6
and obtain a comfortable position.
8 . . . lt:'lf6

a) 8 gS e7 9 0-0 b4 10 lLia4 - see


note 'b' to White's 9th move.
b) 8 'il'e2 b4 9 lL\a4 'WaS - see note 'a' to
White's 9th move.
c) 8 a3 dissuades Black from playing
... b5-b4 but the extra tempo for develop
ment gives Black a chance to consolidate:
8 ... 'il'c7 9 0-0 lLic6 looks comfortable for
Black. Directly hitting the e-pawn before White
d) 8 0-0 and now: has a chance to prepare e4-e5. This is cer
d1) 8 ... d6 9 .:.e1 lLibd7 1 0 gS 'ir'c7 tainly Black's most logical move. However,
transposes to Game 60. 8 ... 'ii'a 5, attacking a4, is also interesting:
d2) 8 ... b4 9 ltJdS?! (9 lLia4 leads to the a) 9 b3 lLif6 1 0 'ii'e2 transposes to note
main game) 9 ... exd5 1 0 exdS cS! 1 1 .:el + 'a' to White's 9th move.
'it> f8 1 2 lLif5 d 6 1 3 f4 i.c8! 1 4 lLid4 'ir'b6 b) 9 c4 bxc3 1 0 lLixc3 lLif6 1 1 0-0 lLic6
1 5 lLic6 (Shabalov-Smirin, New York 1 998) 12 lLib3 'il'c7 13 i.f4 d6 1 4 .:c1 was good
and here 1 5 ... b7 1 6 'ir'f3 lLibd7 (Smirin) for White in the game Plaskett-Berty, Scot
leaves White with insufficient compensation land 1 998, but 9 ... lLif6 looks stronger. After
for the piece. 1 0 0-0 i.xe4 1 1 xe4 lLixe4 White still has
7 ... 'il'c7 transposes to Game 60. to justify being a pawn down.
8 lt:'la4 c) 9 c3 lLif6 10 0-0 and now Black has
8 lLib1 is harmless: 8 ... lLif6 9 lLid2 'il'c7 two ways to capture on e4:
10 0-0 lLic6 1 1 lLixc6 xc6 12 a3 bxa3 1 3 c1) 10 ... lLixe4?! 1 1 cxb4 i.xb4 12 e3
b3 d S gave Black a comfortable equality in 0-0 1 3 .:c1 fS 1 4 lLie2 c6 1 5 lLib6 lLid2 1 6
Nataf-Emms, Paris 1 994. xc6 lLixc6 1 7 lLixa8 .:xa8 1 8 xd2 xd2
8 lLice2!? is interesting: 8 ... lLif6 9 0-0! (9 19 .:c2 gave White a clear advantage in
'il'd3 looks cumbersome: 9 ... d6 10 0-0 Hebden-Stepak, London 1 99 1 .
lLibd7 1 1 f3 :r.c8 12 c3 dS 1 3 exdS lLixdS c2) 1 0. . .xe4 1 1 xe4 lLixe4 1 2 cxb4
and Black was already a bit better in Tok xb4 (12...'ii'xb4?! 1 3 i.e3 i.e7 14 lLifS!!
mina-Lastin, Rovno 2000) 9 ... xe4 1 0 exfS 1 5 lLib6 was good for White in Sutov
xe4 lLixe4 1 1 lLif4 cS 1 2 .:e1 and now: sky-Agrest, Harplinge 1 998) 13 a3 e7 1 4
a) 1 2... d5 1 3 l:.xe4 dxe4 1 4 lLifxe6 fxe6 b 4 'ii'd 8 and I would prefer Black's extra
1 5 ifhS+ g6 16 ifxcS lLid7 17 ifxb4 (Su- pawn to White's pressure.

1 78
5 ltJ c 3 b 5 : Six th M o v e A l terna tives

9 0-0 If Black doesn't want to settle for a


The sharpest try. White offers the e4- drawish ending then he could try the more
pawn and hopes to cash in on his develop ambitious 1 1 ...tiJf6!? but this also carries far
ment advantage. If White wants to keep his more risk. 1 2 'it'3 d5 1 3 i.g5 and now we
pawn, there are two main ways of defending have:
e4: a) 1 3 . . . i..e7 14 ttJf5 exf5 1 5 i..x f6 gxf6 1 6
a) 9 ii'e2 ii'a5! 10 b3 ttJc6 1 1 i.b2 (1 1 .l:.ad1 .l:.a7 1 7 'ir'xf5 'it>f8 1 8 .l:.xd5, Thiel
i.e3 ttJxd4 comes to the same thing) Sax, Senden 1 998.
1 1 ...ltJxd4 1 2 i.xd4 e5!? (12 ... ii'b5 1 3 ii'd3 b) 13 ... ttJbd7 1 4 c4 bxc3 15 ttJxc3 i..c 5
i.e7 14 0-0 e5! 1 5 i.e3 d5 1 6 exd5 i.xd5 (15 ... i..b4 16 ttJxd5! i.xe1 17 l:he1 with
also looks fine for Black, Hellers-Kengis, ideas of ttJc6 and ttJf5) 1 6 .l:.xe6+! fxe6 1 7
Aarhus 1 997) 1 3 i.b6 'ir'bS 14 'ifd3 i.e7 1 5 ttJxe6, Thiel-Nijboer, Germany 1 999.
0-0 .l:.c8 1 6 .l:.acl 0-0 and Black has no In both cases it's difficult to come to any
cause here to complain about his position, major conclusions but it's clear that Black
Balashov-Chuchelov, Germany 200 1 . faces a fierce attack before having a chance
b) 9 i.g5 i.e7 1 0 0-0 'it'a5! 1 1 i..x f6 to utilise his extra material.
i.xf6 1 2 c3! (1 2 tiJb3? ii'xa4! 13 ttJc5 ii'c6
14 ttJxb7 i.e5! 1 5 ttJd6+ 'ifxd6 1 6 'ifxd6
i.xd6 1 7 e5 i.xe5 1 8 i.xa8 i.xb2 1 9 .l:.ab 1
i.c3 gave Black a very pleasant ending in
Bistric-Sax, Sarajevo 1 982) 1 2... ttJc6 1 3 cxb4
ii'xb4 14 ttJe2 .l:.d8 (Kobalija) and Black is
certainly no worse here.
9 i.xe4
. . .

This looks the most logical way of grab


bing the e-pawn. 9 ... ttJxe4 is less logical as
Black has entered a self-pin along the long
diagonal. Play continues 1 0 l:te1 d5 1 1
ttJxe6! fxe6 1 2 ii'h5+ and now:
a) 1 2 .. .'iitd7 1 3 i.xe4 dxe4 1 4 .l:.d 1 + i.d5 1 2 ltJxe6!
1 5 c4! (Plaskett; 15 .l:.xd5+?! exd5 1 6 The only way forward. I don't believe
ii'xd5+ 'it>c8 1 7 ii'xa8 ii'dl + 1 8 'it>g2 'if3+ White has enough compensation after either
is a perpetual check) 15 ...bxc3 16 ttJxc3 12 c4 bxc3 1 3 bxc3 i.d6 or 12 ii'3 ttJd7.
'it>c6 17 i.e3 and it's difficult to believe that 1 2 fxe6 1 3 'iVh5 + g6
. . .

the black king will survive the onslaught of 13 ... 'it>d7 virtually loses by force: 1 4
the white pieces. .l:.xe4! dxe4 1 5 i.. f4 'it>c8 1 6 .l:.d1 ttJd7 1 7
b) 12 ... g6 13 'ife5 'ifd7! (the only move; ii'e2 'ifa5 1 8 ii'c4+ ( 1 8 ii'xe4 also wins)
13 ... 'iff6? 14 .l:.xe4 'ifxe5 1 5 l:txe5 'it>f7 1 6 1 8 ... 'it>d8 1 9 'ifc6 .l:.a7 20 ttJb6 1 -0 Plaskett
i..h 3 i s good for White a s 1 6. . .i.c8? loses to Volzhin, England 1 998. After 20... 'ifb5
1 7 tiJb6, while 1 3. .. tiJf6? runs into 1 4 White wins with 21 i..g5+ .
'ifxe6+ ii'e7 1 5 Ji..g5) 1 4 ii'xh8 'ifxa4 1 5 3 1 4 'iVe5 'iVf6!
ttJc5 (Kupreichik-Gdanski, Leningrad 1 989) The best move. 14 ... 'ir'd7 1 5 ttJb6 i.g7
1 6 ii'xh7 'ifd7 (or 1 6 ...'ifxc2 17 i.h3!) 1 7 1 6 ttJxd7 i.xe5 1 7 ttJxe5 is a superior ver
ii'xg6 + ii' f7 1 8 'ir'g4 (Plaskett) and White is sion of the game for White, while 1 4 ... .l:.g8??
better. loses to 1 5 'ifxe6+.
1 0 i.xe4 ltJxe4 1 1 .ll e 1 d5 1 5 .llxe4 'iVxe5 16 l:txe5 f7

1 79
Sicilia n Kan

can happen if White plays too casually.


Black will double rooks on the c-ftle and
White's c2-pawn will be a major weakness,
Brynell-C.Hansen, Reykjavik 2000.
1 7 . . .a 5
Supporting the b4-pawn and preparing to
defend the e6-pawn with ... l:.a6. Another
continuation is 17 ... lbd7 18 l:tf3+ g7 19
b3! l:.c8 20 ..tb2+ eS 21 l:td3 d4 22 f4 l:hc2
23 fxeS tt::lc S 24 tt::lx cS .ixcS 25 .ixd4 l:.d8
26 l:tad1 l:hd4 27 l:.xd4 l:.xa2 28 h1
i.xd4 29 .l:lxd4 with a drawn endgame,
Barczay-Korpics, Hungarian League 1 996.
17 l:eJ! 1 8 l:fJ + eB 1 9 .i.f4 ltJd7 20 .l:!.e 1 l:!.a6
I believe that it's White who has to play 21 .l:!.fel
accurately here to equalise. The rook is well Setting up a draw by repetition. It's in
placed on the third rank, where it can some White's interests to do this because, as we
times harass the black king. have seen, if Black consolidates then the c2-
1 7 l:.e2?! ttJd7! 1 8 ..te3 ..tg7 1 9 .l:ld 1 pawn could prove to be weak.
l:.hc8 20 l:f.d3?! aS! is an example of what 21 . . .f7 22 llfl eB 23 .l:!.fel f7 Yz - Yz

1 80
5 liJ c 3 b 5 : Six th Mo v e A l terna tives

Summary
Currently 6 .. i.b7 remains out of fashion and I believe this will not change except maybe
.

with the offshoot 6 ...i.b7 7 0-0 'ii'b 6. White's play in Game 70 casts a big shadow over
black ideas involving .Jfje7.
6 g3 continues to be popular, if nothing else because the position can arise from other
move orders (1 e4 cS 2 lt:'lf3 e6 3 lt:'lc3 a6 4 g3 bS 5 d4 cxd4 6 lt:'lxd4 is one example) . It will
be interesting to see if White can come up with any improvements over Thiel-Chuchelov
(Game 71), which looks theoretically fine for Black at the moment.

1 e4 c5 2 liJf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 liJxd4 a6 5 liJc3 b5 (D) 6 ..td3


6 g3 (D) Game 71
-

6 . . . ..tb7 7 0-0 Wb6 - Game 69


...7 lt:'le7 (D) - Game 70

5. . . b5 6 g3 7 . . . ltJe 7

181
CHAPTER NINE I
5 c4

1 e4 c5 2 lDf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lDxd4 a6 c) 5 g3 dS! is a good equaliser:


5 c4 c1) The endgames that arise after 6 l2Jc3
In this chapter we will be dealing with 5 dxe4 7 l2Jxe4 eS 8 l2Jb3 "fixd 1 + 9 'it'xd 1
c4. With this move White shows that he is l2Jc6, 6 exdS "fixdS! 7 l2Jf3 "fixd 1 + 8 'it'xd 1
not concerned about keeping his options l2Jc6 and 6 i.g2 dxe4 7 i.xe4 l2Jf6 8 .tg2
open and immediately sets up the Maroczy eS 9 l2Jb3 "fixd1 + 1 0 'it'xd1 l2Jc6 all look
Bind. However, 5 c4 has never been any very comfortable for Black.
where near as popular as 5 i.d3, the main c2) 6 l2Jf3 l2Jf6 7 exdS "fixdS (7 ... exdS is
reason for this being that Black has some also playable) 8 "fixd5 l2Jxd5 9 .tg2 l2Jc6 1 0
important alternatives to simply accepting 0-0 i. e7 1 1 c 3 f6 1 2 l2Jbd2 'it' f7 1 3 l2Jc4
the hedgehog structure with ... d7-d6. We .td7 14 :d1 .l:.ad8 was equal in Mosquera
will be dealing with these possibilities here. Zapata, Cali 200 1 .
1 e4 c5 2 lDf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lDxd4 a6 c3) 6 e S l2Jc6 7 l2Jxc6 bxc6 8 i.g2 "fic7
5 c4 looks fine for Black. In the game Dovliatov
Here's a summary of White's other fifth Macieja, Batumi 2002, White tried the
move possibilities: speculative sacrifice 9 0-0?! but following
a) 5 i.e2!? l2Jf6 6 l2Jc3 .tb4!? (6 ... "fic7, 9 ... "fixe5 1 0 c4 lDf6 1 1 l2Jc3 "fic7 1 2 :e1
transposing to the note to Black's 6th move .te7 13 .tf4 "fid8 14 "fia4 .td7 15 :ad1
in Game 59, is the safest course for Black) 7 0-0 he had little to show for his pawn.
0-0 .txc3 8 bxc3 l2Jxe4 9 "fid3 (9 .td3 l2Jf6 d) 5 l2Jd2 "fic7 6 .td3 l2Jf6 7 0-0 trans
1 0 :e1 0-0 1 1 .tgS h6 1 2 .th4 l2Jc6 1 3 "fif3 poses to note 'c' to White's 7th move in
dS was unclear in Ricardi-Smirin, Internet Game 19.
[blitz] 2000) 9 ... d5 10 .ta3 eS 1 1 l2Jb3 "fic7 e) 5 .te3 will also usually transpose to
was prematurely agreed drawn in Stean lines discussed earlier. For example 5 ... l2Jf6
Gheorghiu, Teeside 1 975 with White having 6 .td3 'ifc7 7 0-0 transposes to note 'd' to
good compensation for the minus pawn. White's 7th move in Game 19.
b) 5 f4 gives Black a number of ways to 5 lDf6
. . .

play. He can continue in hedgehog fashion 5 ... g6 is less effective against 5 c4 than
with 5 ... d6, while both S ... .tcS and S ... dS!? 6 against 5 i.d3 as White's light-squared
eS l2Jc6 seem reasonable. bishop doesn't block the d-file. Conse-

1 82
5 c4

quently Black will be under more pressure the note to White's 9th move i n Game 1 6.
down this ftle. 6 lLlc3 .ig7 7 .ie3 lbe7 8 c) 8 .ie3 lLle5 9 h3 (9 'ii'e2?! lLlfg4!)
i.e2 0-0 9 0-0 d6 10 'ii'd2 'ii'c 7 1 1 l:tfd1 9 ... b6 10 l:tct i.b7 1 1 0-0 transposes to the
gave White a pleasant advantage in Estrin note to White's l Oth move in Game 17.
Siklos, correspondence 1 97 5. d) 8 lLlde2 .ic5 9 0-0 lLle5 1 0 h3 d6 1 1
6 lL'lc3 .ig5 lLlfd7 1 2 l:tct (Chiburdanidze-Suetin,
6 i.d3 is met in typical fashion by Moscow 1 981) 12 ... lLlxd3 1 3 'ii'xd3 lbe5 is
6 ... lLlc6! and now: equal according to Suetin.
a) 7 lLlxc6 dxc6! is comfortable for Black. 7 .i.d3
8 i.f4!? lbd7 9 lLlc3 e5 10 .ie3 .ic5 was Alternatively:
level in I.Polgar-Portisch, Hungary 1 97 1 . a) 7 e5 promises little: 7 ... lLle4 8 'ii'g4
b) 7 .ie3 lLle5!? 8 0-0 lLlfg4!? (8 ... 'ii'c7 lLlxc3 9 a3 i.f8 1 0 bxc3 d6 1 1 exd6 e5! 1 2
transposes to Game 1 7) 9 .ict i.c5 10 .ie2 lLlf5 g6 1 3 'ii'g3 lLlc6 1 4 lLle3 ( 1 4 lLlh6?!
'ii'f6 (10 ... lLlxf2!? 1 1 lhf2 'ii'b6 12 i.e3 lbc6 'ii'xd6 15 .ie2 f5 16 .ig5 .ie7 17 0-0 .ixg5
1 3 .ih5 g6 14 'i'f3! was better for White in 18 'iixg5 'iWe7 19 h4 'ii'xg5 20 hxg5 .ie6 left
Galow-Matt, correspondence 1 995) 1 1 White's knight doing very little on h6 in
i.xg4 i.xd4 looks reasonabl for Black. Van der Wiel-Cacho Reigadas, Linares 1 995)
14 ... 'ii'xd6 1 5 i.e2 f5 1 6 lbd5 .ie6 left
Black comfortably placed in Campora
Motwani, Manila Olympiad 1 992.
b) 7 .id2 0-0 8 e5 .ixc3 9 .ixc3 lbe4
and now:
b1) 10 'ii'c2 d5 1 1 exd6 lLlxc3 12 'ii'xc3
'ii'xd6 1 3 0-0-0 'ii'f4+ 1 4 'ii'e3 'ii'x e3+ 1 5
fxe3 e5 1 6 lLl f3 lLlc6 was level in Kavalek
Portisch, Halle 1 963.
b2) 10 .ib4 d6 1 1 'ii'e 2 'ii'b6 12 lLlc2
lbc6 13 a3 d5 14 f3 lbc5 1 5 'ii'e 3 d4! 1 6
lLlxd4 lLlxb4 1 7 axb4 'ii'x b4+ and Black had
equalised in Korchnoi-Furman, Leningrad
6 i.b4
. . . 1 957.
This is the move Black tries if he doesn't 7 lbc6
. . .

wish to play a Hedgehog. The main alterna


tive is 6 ... 'ii'c 7, after which White has three
main choices:
a) 7 .ie2, preparing to castle but allowing
... .ib4, is studied in Game 75.
b) 7 a3, preventing the pin with ... i.b4, is
dealt with in Game 74.
c) 7 .id3 bolsters the e-pawn, but leaves
the knight on d4 undefended. After the
typical 7 ... lLlc6! White has the following
possibilities:
a) 8 l2Jf3 b6 9 0-0 l2Jg4 transposes to
note 'c' to White's 8th move in Game 1 7.
b) 8 lLlxc6 dxc6 9 0-0 e5 transposes to Again a characteristic reaction to White's

1 83
Sicilian Kan

i.d3. White now has various choices: i.f6 xe4 21 fxe4 l:f.g6 22 eS 'ii'c 6 and
a) 8 lt:Jxc6 is the subject of Game 72. White didn't have enough compensation for
b) 8 c2 is studied in Game 73. the material disadvantage in Velimirovic-
c) 8 lt:Jc2!? i.xc3+ 9 bxc3 dS! 1 0 exdS Rublevsky, Novi Sad 2000.
exdS 1 1 a3 e6 1 2 'ii'e2 'ii'c7 1 3 0-0 0-0-0 b) 1 4 i.b2 'ii'e 7! (14 ... eS 1 S :e1 0-0 1 6
1 4 cS l:the8 was unclear i n Oppenrieder- :xeS gave White good compensation in
O.Moiseev, correspondence 1 9S7. Velimirovic-Pikula, Yugoslav Ch. 1 996) 1 S
d) 8 lt:Jde2 'ii'c 7 9 0-0 lt:JeS 1 0 h3 (Ehl- i.xg7 l%g8 1 6 c3 f6 1 7 f4 d7 1 8 'ii'b 2
vest-Bologan, Calcutta 1 999) and now Bo- 'iii> f7 19 'ii'xb7 l%ab8 20 'ii'a7 cS and Black
logan gives 10 ... 0-0 1 1 f4 lt:Jxd3 12 'ii'xd3 d6 was better, Janssen-Quinteros, Baden-
1 3 a3 cS+ 14 'iii> h 1 i.d7 as equal. Baden 1 985.
1 2 . . .'ifxd3 1 3 fxg7 l:l.g8 14 ..th6 'ifc3 +
Game 72 1 5 'iirf 1 'iff6
Drygalski-Filutowski 1 S ...'ii'xc4+ nets another pawn, but in-
Co"espondence 1 995 stead Black correcdy addresses more press-
.________________. ing issues, like the dark-squared weaknesses
1 e4 c5 2 lbf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lbxd4 a6 around his king.
5 c4 lbf6 6 lbc3 ..ib4 7 .i.d3 lbc6 8 1 6 'ifc1 e5 1 7 l:l.b 1 ! ? ..ie6! ?
lbxc6 dxc6 9 e5 Stirring up more complications by allow-
The sharpest move, after which there is a ing the b7-pawn to drop. Black can keep his
mass of complications. In contrast, 9 0-0 eS pawn with 17 ...bS, for example 18 cxbS
leads to a dull equality. axbS 1 9 .l:tb2 fS 20 h4 :a4 21 'iii>g 1 _:g4
9 . . . 'ifd4 22 l:td2 e4 23 'ii'a3 'ii'xh6 24 'ii'a 8+ 'iii>e7
9 ... 'ii'a S leads to exactly the same thing. 2S 'ii'a 7+ 'iii> f6 26 .l:td6+ 'iii>xg7 27 :xh6
1 0 exf6 ..ixc3 + 1 1 bxc3 'ifxc3 + 'iii>x h6 28 'ii'e 3+ 'iii>h S 29 f3 :xg2+ 30 'iii> fl
.idS 31 'ii'x eS+ 'iifh6 32 'ii' f4+ 'iifhS 33
'ii' fS + 'iii>h6 with a draw by perpetual check,
Lonoff-S.Wolff, correspondence 1 987.

1 2 ..id2
The Yugoslav GM Velimirovic has tried
1 2 'ii'd 2!? on more than one occasion. After
1 2... 'ii'xa 1 1 3 0-0 (13 fxg7 'ii'xg7 1 4 0-0 eS 1 8 l:l.xb7 0-0-0 1 9 l:l.b6
1S f4 g4 16 b2 0-0-0 is good for Black 1 9 lta7!? 'ii'h4 20 .l:ta8+ 'iitc 7 21 :xd8
Tal) 1 3 . .. 'ii'x f6 we have: l:t.xd8 was very messy in the game Oech
a) 1 4 a3 d7 1 S l:tb1 cS! 1 6 e4 'ii'e S slein-Bernardt, correspondence 1 986. White
17 f3 c6 1 8 b2 'ii'c 7 1 9 xg7 l:tg8 20 has the dangerous passed pawn on g7 but

1 84
5 c4

but the rook on h 1 has yet to enter the 'ii'c 7


game. 8 ...l2Je5 9 0-0! lLlxc4 10 'ii'e2 l2Je5 1 1
1 9 . . Jd4 h1 d6 1 2 f4 lLlg6 1 3 f5 gives White a
Van der Tak gives the intriguing line strong attack for the pawn. Mestel
1 9 ... .th3 20 gxh3 (20 .U.xa6? 'ii'f3!) 20 ... 'ii' f3 Shamkovich, Hastings 1 977/78 continued
21 .l:tg1 .t'td l + 22 'ii'xd 1 'ii'x dl + 23 g2 1 3 ... l2Je5 14 .ia4+! b5 1 5 .ixb5+! axb5 1 6
'ii'd 6 24 l:lgb1 'ii'g 6+ 25 fl 'ii'd 3+ with a 'ii'x b5+ 'iid7 1 7 'ii'xb4 and i t was White
draw by perpetual check, but perhaps Black who had the extra pawn.
can play for the win with 24 ... d7!?, aiming 9 0-0
to cross over to the kingside.
20 .:.xc6 + 'iti>b7 21 :c5 'ii'd 8 22 'iti>e2
22 e 1 ? 'ii'd6! 23 'ii'b 1 + a8 24 l:ta5
l:td8 wins for Black - Van der Tak.
22 . . .'ii'b 6
Now 22 ... 'ii'd 6? is answered by 23 'ii'b 2+
a8 24 .U.b 1 !.
23 'ii'a 3 ..txc4 + 24 :xc4 :xc4 25
'ii'f3 + 'iti>b8 26 'it'xf7 l:tc2 + 27 ..td2
'ii'b 5 + 28 e3

9 . . .lLlxd4
Also interesting is the line 9 ... 0-0 1 0
h1 !? lLlxd4 1 1 'ii'xd4 l2Jg4 1 2 f4! and now:
a) 12 ... b5 1 3 'ii'd 1 ! .txc3 (13. .. l2Jf6?! 1 4
e 5 lLle8 1 5 lLle4 was good for White in
Mestel-Portisch, London 1 982) 14 bxc3
'ii'xc4 (Mestel) when I would prefer White's
two bishops and attacking chances on the
kingside to Black's extra pawn.
b) 12 ... .tc5 13 'ii'd 3!? lLJ2+ 1 4 l:tx2
28 . . .'ii'b 6 + .tx f2 1 5 e5 g6 16 lLle4 .th4 17 .td2 b5!
Black settles for the draw, a wise move as and now:
28 ... l:td8?! 29 f3! 'ii'c 6+ 30 g3 'ii'g6+ 3 1 b1) 1 8 l2Jf6+?! ..1xf6 1 9 exf6 (Mestel
'ii'xg6 hxg6 32 .t'tb 1 + c8 3 3 ..1g5 (Van der Miles, British Ch. 1 979) 19 ... 'ii'xc4 20 'ii'h 3
Tak) only gives White winning chances. h8 and Black defends.
29 e2 'ii'b 5 + 30 'ite3 'ii'b6 + 3 1 'iti>e2 b2) 1 8 'ii'h 3! with a further split:
%-% b21) 18 ... 'ii'd 8 19 i.c3 .tb7 20 lLlf6+
..----- .txf6 21 exf6 h5 (21 ...h8 22 .txg6! - Ca-
Game 73 brilo) 22 'ii'g3 h7 23 .U.e1 d6 24 'ii'g5 .U.h8
Kruger-Silva Filho 25 .U.xe6 wins for White.
Comspondence 1 998 b22) 1 8 ... .te7 1 9 ..1b4!.
b23) 18 .. .f5! is the best defence: 19 .tb4
1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6 l:tf7 20 'ii'xh4 fxe4 21 ..1xe4 is unclear.
5 c4 lLlf6 6 lLlc3 ..tb4 7 ..td3 lLlc6 8 ..tc2 1 0 'ii'xd4 lLlg4 1 1 e5 lLlxe5 1 2 lLle4

1 85
Sicilian Kan

'ir'xh8+ 'itJe7 1 7 'ir'g7 'ir'e2 1 8 'ir'gS+ 'itJe8


1 9 'ir'g8+ 1/z- 1/z Mestel-Liberzon, Hastings
1 980/81 .
1 4 . . . .tb7?
This allows a nasty trick. The position is
still quite unclear after 1 4... 'ir'xd4! 15 ..ixd4
lLlg4.
1 5 fxe5 'i'xc2

1 2 . . . b6
The other way to defend the knight is
with 1 2... d6.
a) 13 f4 'ir'xc4 14 ..ie3 'ir'xd4 15 ..ixd4
dS? (Black should try 1 5 .. .'Jg4!) 1 6 fxeS
dxe4 17 J.xe4 0-0 1 8 l:tacl was clearly bet
ter for White in Hector-Paramos Domin
guez, La Coruna 1 995.
b) 13 J.f4 f6 (or 13. ..b6? 1 4 a3 J.cS 1 5 1 6 xf7! ! i.d5
'ir'c3 f5 1 6 J.a4+! 'itJf8 17 lLlxcS bxcS 1 8 16 ... 'itJxf7 loses to 17 'ir'xd7+ J.e7 1 8
l:tad1 lLlf7 1 9 J.xd6+! lLlxd6 20 'ir'eS 'itJ f7 .l:.fl + and Black i s getting mated.
21 .l:.xd6 'WaS 22 J.d7 1 -0 Chiburdanidze 1 7 'i'xb4 xf7 1 8 .l:!.f 1 + g8 1 9 'i'e7
Fischdick, Belgrade 1 979) 14 a3 ..icS 1 5 'i'xg2 +
lLlxcS 'ir'xcS 1 6 'ir'xcS dxcS 1 7 J.xeS fxeS 1 8 1 9 ... h6 allows mate after 20 'ir'f7+ 'itJh7
.l:.fe 1 J.d7 1 9 .l:.xeS with a slight plus for 21 lLlf6. It's really time to resign now!
White due to Black's isolated e6-pawn, Ma 20 xg2 i.xe4 + 2 1 g 1 i.g6 22 'i'xd7
ciejewski-Jaracz, Mikolajki 1 991 . h6 23 'i'xe6 + h7 24 'i'xb6 1 -0

Game 74
Krnic-Taimanov
Vrnjacka Batya 1 974

1 e4 c5 2 lt:\f3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:\xd4 a6


5 c4 lt:\f6 6 lt:\c3 'i'c7 7 a3
By playing an early a2-a3 White rules out
the possibility of ...J.b4 and thus restricts
Black's opportunities to complicate early
on. Black usually falls back on the hedgehog
structure in the knowledge that White has
'wasted' a tempo. However, often the pawn
1 3 f4 'i'xc4 1 4 i.e3! on a3 actually serves a purpose as White
This is an attempted improvement over later expands on the queenside (see Kas
the older 14 'ir'xeS 'ir'xc2 1 5 'ir'xg7 'ir'xe4 1 6 parov-Kramnik below).

1 86
5 c4

it would take a very brave player to play this


as Black.
8 ..td3
S .ie3!? is the other main move. Follow
ing S ... .ib7 9 f3 .ie7 1 0 .ie2 0-0 1 1 l:tct
we transpose to the note to Black's 7th
move in Game 75.
8 . . . ..tb7 9 0-0 lt'lc6! ?
A s well a s this move, Black could try
9 ... .ic5, intending 10 liJb3 .ie7, or 9 ....ie7,
for example 10 'ii'e2 d6 1 1 f4 0-0 leads to
positions similar to ones already discussed
except that White has played the not very
7 . . . b6! ? useful a2-a3.
Refusing for the moment to close the 1 0 lt'lxc6
bishop in with ... d7 -d6 and thus keeping 10 .ie3?! lt:\e5! gives Black good coun
some options open. Black's other choices terplay.
include: 1 0 . . . 1fxc6
a) 7 . ..lDc6 S .ie3 .ie7 9 l:tct 0-0 (9... lt:\e5 In this particular instance Black recap
10 .ie2 lt:\g6 1 1 0-0 b6 12 f4 0-0 1 3 b4 was rures with the queen rather than the d-pawn
better for White in Torre-Karpov, Bad Lau so as to keep the long diagonal open.
terberg 1 977) 10 .ie2 lt:\xd4! 1 1 'ii'xd4 d6 1 1 1fe2 ..te7 1 2 f4
1 2 0-0 l:tbS 1 3 'ii'b6 'ii'xb6 14 .ixb6 .id7
1 5 l:tfd 1 :res 16 b4 .ieS 17 .ia7 l:taS 1 S
.ie3 lt:\d7 1 9 lt:\a4 l:tc6 20 f3 f8 21 2
and White had a minuscule edge in Kas
parov-Ivanchuk, Linares 2002.
b) 7 ... d6 S .ie3 b6 9 l:tct liJbd7 10 .ie2
.ib7 1 1 f3 .ie7 12 0-0 0-0 1 3 h1 l:tacS
reaches a typical Hedgehog position. Kas
parov-Kramnik, Moscow 2001 continued
14 b4 'ii'b S 1 5 'ii'd2 .idS 16 l:tc2 l:teS (Stohl
suggests 1 6 ... .ic7 1 7 .ig1 hS with the
ambitious idea of ... :gs and a possible ... g7-
g5; it was Fischer who introduced this plan)
1 7 lt:\a4 .ic7 (preparing ... d6-d5) 1 S .ig1 ! 1 2 . . . ..tc5 + !
and White's space o n the queenside gives 1 2... d6?! 1 3 e5 dxe5 1 4 fxe5 lt:\d7 1 5 .ie4
him slightly better chances. 'ii'c 7 16 .ixb7 'ii'xb7 1 7 'ii'g4 (Taimanov)
c) 7 ... lt:\xe4!? seems impossible at first offers White dangerous attacking possibili
but Black acrually does win back the piece. ties on the kingside.
However, following S lt:\xe4 (S lt:\xe6 dxe6 9 1 3 'it>h1 ..td4
lt:\xe4 .ie7 1 0 .id3 0-0 1 1 0-0 is probably Adding pressure on the vulnerable e4-
slightly better for White) S... 'ii'e 5 9 .id3! (9 pawn. Now White should play 1 4 lt:\d5!.
f3 d5!) 9 ...'ii'xd4 1 0 0-0 lt:\c6 1 1 .ie3 'ii'e 5 1 4 e5?! ..txc3 1 5 bxc3 lt'le4 1 6 ..txe4
12 f4! 'ii'c 7 13 f5 (Watanabe-Braga, Brazil 1fxe4 1 7 1fxe4 ..txe4
1 991) White has a very strong initiative and Black's excellent bishop and supenor

187
Sicilian Ka n

pawn structure guarantees an edge, although with a further split:


in the end this was not enough to win the b1) 1 1 0-0?! .id6! and now White's best is
game. to allow a perpetual with 12 g3 .ixg3 1 3
1 8 .te3 l:lc8 1 9 .txb6 l:lxc4 20 .ta5 g5 hxg3 lixg3+ a s both 1 2 h3? .ih2+ 1 3 h1
21 'iii>g 1 l:lg8 22 g3 gxf4 23 l:lxf4 l:.g5 lLlhS and 12 h 1 .ixh2 13 f4 .ig3 14 l:tf3
24 l:.b1 .l:.xe5 25 l:.b8 + <k;e7 26 i.b4 + lLlhS are unappetising.
d6 27 l:lb6 .l:US 28 .l:.xf5 exf5 29 lba6 b2) 1 1 2?! (this looks a little too artifi
I:!.c6 30 l:.a7 + e6 31 'iii>f2 i.d5 32 a4 cial) 1 1 ...l:%.dS! 1 2 g4?! (1 2 lib3 is stronger)
I:!.c4 Y:z - Y2 1 2... lL:lc6 1 3 lLlxc6 dxc6 1 4 ligl cS and
Black was better in Van der Wiel-Bischoff,
Game 75 Baden-Baden 1 992.
I .Aimasi-Portisch b3) I like the move 1 1 a3!, preventing any
Hungary 1 995 possible ... .ib4 checks and preparing lL:la4.
Now 1 1 ... d6 would reach a typical Hedge-
1 e4 c5 2 lLlf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lLlxd4 a6 hog, while 1 1 ...l:tdS 1 2 lL:la4! d6 1 3 lLlbS!
5 c4 lLlf6 6 lLlc3 "ikc7 7 .te2 .tb4 axbS 14 cxbS lid7 1 5 lLlxb6 lieS 16 l::.c 7!
Black accepts the invitation to pin the l:ta7 17 lL:lc4 dS 1S .ixa7 dxc4 19 lia4 is
knight. Another interesting possibility here better for White.
is 7 ... b6 S i.e3 .ib7 9 f3 .ie7 1 0 l:tc1 and 8 lLlc2
now: Immediately asking the question of the
a) 1 0 ... d6 accepts the hedgehog forma bishop. An alternative is S 0-0 i.xc3 9 bxc3
tion. Typical play would now be 1 1 0-0 and now:
lLlbd7 12 lid2 0-0 1 3 I:.fd1 I:.acS 14 i.fl a) 9 ... lLlxe4 10 i.d3! lL:lcS 1 1 l:te1 f8
libS 1 5 li2 .idS! (on c7 the bishop pro (1 1 ...d6 12 lLlfS! 0-0 1 3 lLlxd6!) 12 lL:lb3
tects both b6 and d6 and there's the possi gives White tremendous play for the pawn,
bility of ... d6-d5, uncovering an attack on Kapetanovic-Petronic, Yugoslavia 1 991 .
h2) 1 6 h1 .ic7 1 7 lL:lde2 hS! 1 S .id4 b) 9 ... d6! 1 0 .ia3!? lLlxe4 1 1 .if3 lL:lcS 1 2
.ic6 19 .ie3?! (White should be doing 'i'd2 lLlbd7 1 3 ligS 0-0 1 4 lie7! l:ta7 1 5
something positive on the queenside) l:.ad1 b6 1 6 lL:lc6 lL:leS 1 7 lixd6 lLlxf3+ 1 S
19 ... lLleS 20 b3 (Bezgodov-Loskutov, Omsk gxf3 lixd6 1 9 l:.xd6 l:tc7 was unclear in
1 996) and now Black should proceed with Hector-Spassov, Chartres 1 990.
20 ... l:.gS!, intending ... g7-g5 and ...l:tg6. 8 . . . .te7
b) 1 0...0-0!? Black decides to employ the Hedgehog
after all! The main alternative is to capture
on c3 with S ... .ixc3+ 9 bxc3 and here Black
has a choice:
a) 9 ... lLlxe4?! 10 lid4 lLlf6 1 1 .if4 'i'aS
1 2 .id6 gives White total domination of the
dark squares.
b) 9 ... lLlc6 10 lid3 0-0 1 1 .ia3 looks
good for White, for example 1 t ...l:tdS 1 2
.id6 liaS 1 3 lLlb4 lLleS 1 4 0-0 lLlxd6 1 5
lixd6 lia3 1 6 e S lixc3 1 7 lLlxc6 bxc6 1 S
l:tab 1 and Black has trouble developing his
remaining pieces, Wollmann-Barten, corre
spondence 1 994.

1 88
5 c4

c) 9 ... d6!? 10 .ia3 lt:\xe4 1 1 'ii'd 4 f5 1 2 Enticing, but with White's king and
.ih5+ f8 1 3 .l:td 1 lt:\c6 1 4 'ii'e 3 lt:\a5 1 5 queen on the same diagonal, White should
'ii'xe4 fxe4 1 6 .ixd6+ 'ii'xd6 1 7 .l:txd6 e7 have smelt the trouble brewing.
18 d4 b6 19 xe4 .ib7 20 e2 lt:\xc4 21 1 5 . . . d5!!
lt:Jd4 e5 22 i.f3 .ixf3 23 lLlxf3 f6 24 lt:\d2 A brilliant exchange sacrifice which re
lt:Jxd2 25 xd2 l:tac8 26 b 1 fizzled out futes White's earlier play. Black will be able
into a draw in Bryson-Motwani, Aberdeen to feast on the self-inflicted weakness on
200 1 , but Black must be very brave to take White's kingside.
on these dark-squared weaknesses. 1 6 i.xts :xts 1 1 'i!i'g2
9 0-0 d6 1 0 i.e3 b6 1 1 f3 tt:lbd7 1 2 Almasi gives the following possibilities,
'i!i'e 1 .i.b7 1 3 'i!i'f2 all of which lead to a clear advantage for
13 d 1 is more accurate. Black.
1 3 . . . 0-0 a) 17 h 1 dxe4 1 8 fxe4 lt:\e5!.
Almasi gives 1 3 ... d5! as equalising imme b) 1 7 cxd5 .ic5 1 8 lt:\e3 'ii' f4 1 9 lt:Jcdl
diately, for example 1 4 exd5 exd5 1 5 cxd5 exd5.
lt:\xd5 16 lt:\xd5 .ixd5 17 lt:Jd4 0-0 18 lt:Jf5 c) 17 exd5 .ic5 1 8 lt:\e3 'ii' f4 19 lt:Jcd 1
i.f6. exd5.
14 g4? ! 1 7 . . . dxc4 1 8 f4 h6 1 9 h4?
White should play 14 ad1 with the in
tention of doubling on the d-ftle and thus
making it impossible for Black to break with
... d6-d5.
1 4 . . . g6!?
Now 1 4...d5? is answered by 15 g5!, the
point of White's 1 4th move.
1 5 i.h6?

19 g5 is more resilient. Now White's po


sition begins to crumble.
1 9 . . . b5! 20 g5 hxg5 21 hxg5 .i.c5 + ! 22
h 1 b4! 23 gxf6 bxc3 24 i.f3 'i!i'xf4 25
bxc3 tt:lxf6 26 e5 tt:le4 27 'ili'h2 lLlf2 +
0-1

1 89
Sicilian Ka n

Summary
If Black really wishes to avoid playing the Hedgehog here then 6 i.b4 is the way forward,
...

but Games 72-73 show that this leads to incredibly sharp positions. After 6 ..1r'c7 I prefer 7
.

a3 to 7 i.e2 and 7 i.d3. The note to Black's 8th move in Game 74 shows that it is then
difficult for Black to avoid playing anything but a Hedgehog. Of course, this is certainly not
a bad thing, otherwise the Kan would be unplayable!

1 e4 c5 2 lt:\fJ e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 lt:\xd4 a6 5 c4 lt:\f6 6 lt:\cJ i.b4


6 1r'c7
...

7 i.e2 (D) - Game 75


7 a3 - Game 74
7 i.dJ lt:\c6 (D) 8 lt:\xc6 - Game 72
8 i.c2 (D) - Game 73

7 i.e2 8 i.c2

1 90
INDEX OF COMPLETE GAMES I

Acs-Fancsy, Zalakaros 1991 ............................. ...................................................................... 137


Adams-Kobalija, FIDE World Ch., Lu Vegas 1999 ............................................................. 24
Almasi.I-Portisch, Hungary 1995........ .................................................................................. 188
Almasi.Z-Anand, FIDE World Ch., Groningen 1997 ............................................................. 17
Almasi.Z-Farago, Linz 1995................................................................................................... 14
Almasi.Z-Stangl, Altensteig 1994 ............................................................................................. 88
Anka-Nijboer, Dieren 1998 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . ..... 1 13
Antal-Szilagyi, Budapest 200 1 ................................................................................................ 163
Antoniewski-Berzinsh, Prerov 200 1 ..................................................................................... 158
Aseev-Kochyev, Leningrad 1984 .............................................................................................. 53
Barash-Batakovs, Comspondence 1983 .................................................................................. 144
Beliavsky-Gheorghiu, Moscow 1981 ....................................................................................... 16
Berthelot-Velikov, Trignac 200 1 ....................................................................... ....................... 98
Blehm-Gajewski, Polish Championship 200 1 ......................................................................... 161
Borngaesser-Lau, Essen 1996 ................................................................................................. 29
Csoke-Lehoczki, Hungarian League 1998 ............................................................................... 38
Dix-Edwards, Comspondence 1993 .......................................................................................... 19
Docx-Van der Linden, Belgian League 1996 ........................................................................ 149
Drygalski-Filutowski, Comspondence 1995.......................................................................... 184
Goloshchapov-Kobalija, Ekaterinburg 1999........................................................................ 132
Golubev-Moroz, Donetsk 1998 .............................................................................................. 108
Grischuk-Smirin, FIDE World Ch., New Delhi 2000 .......................................................... 169
Haba-Poluj ahov, Swidnica 2000 ............................................................................................ 160
Hall-Hells ten, Limhamn 1998 ................................................ .......... ....................................... 54
Hanoman-Hellsten, Stockholm 1996 ........................ ...................................... ...................... 139
Hellers-Gheorghiu, Haifa 1989.............................................................................................. 19
Herschel-Fiensch, Comspondence 1979 .................................................................................. 92
Hjartarson-Bezold, Bermuda 1997.......................................................................................... 87
Horvath.J-Farago, Budapest 1987 ........................................................................................... 96
Jamieson-Adamski, Nice O!Jmpiad 1974 ............................................................................. 1 1 8

191
Sicilian Ka n

Johnson-West, Comspondence 1997 ......................................................................................... 27


Kengis-Nevednichy.B, USSR 1979 ...................................................................................... 93
Khalifman-Rublevsky, Kazan 200 1 ....................................................................................... 66
Koch.C-Fanghui Feng, Comspondence 2000 ......................................................................... 56
Krnic-Taimanov, Vrnjacka Ba'!Ja 1974 ................................................................................ 186
Kruger-Silva Filho, Comspondence 1998 ............................................................................... 185
Lastin-Rublevsky, Moscow (bliti) 200 1 ................................................................................... 64
Lutz-Milov, European Team Ch., Leon 200 1 .......................................................................... 104
Magomedov-Khouseinov, Dushanbe 1999 ........................................................................... 48
Midoux-Eingom, Metz 2000 ................................................................................................ 147
Moberg-Agrest, Swedish Team Championship 200 1 ............................................................... 102
Motylev-Ye Jiangchuan, Shanghai 200 1 .............................................................................. 1 16
Nagatz-Dautov, Bad Lluterberg 199 1 ................................................................................... 135
Niggemann-Pfrommer, Comspondence 1998 ........................................................................ 84
Nunn-Khurtsidze, World Team Ch., l.JJcerne 1997............................................................... 122
Parma-Capelan, Solingen 1968................................................................................................. 90
Pikula-Cvitan, Bie/ 1996 ............................................. ...... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 140
Plachetka-Ravikumar, Politiken Cup, Copenhagen 1980 ........................................................ 37
Polgar.J-Miezis, Tallinn, 200 1 ............................................................................................... 120
Sandor-Chemuschevich, Poznan 1995.................................................................................. 40
Sax-Fogarasi, Hungarian League 1997 ................................................................................... 126
Schlosser-Vyzmanavin, Sochi 1989........................................................................................ 4 2
Shaposhnikov-Karttunen, Athens 200 1 ................................................................................ 22
Shirov-Agrest, European Team Ch., Leon 200 1 ...................................................................... 100
Shirov-Komeev, Spain 1998..................................................................................................... 99
Shirov-Rublevsky, Montecatini Terme 2000 ............................................................................. 68
Shmuter-Maryasin, Israeli Team Championship 1999 ........................................................... 165
Short-Sax, Amsterdam 1983 ...................................................................................................... 3 1
Smirin-Goldin, Philadelphia 1998............................................................................................. 5 1
Stisis-Oratovsky, Tel Aviv (rapid) 1996................................................................................. 1 15
Sulskis-Eingom, Koszalin 1999 ............................................................................................. 124
Svidler-Milov, Biel, 2000 ........................................................................................................ 1 75
Thiel-Chuchelov, Munster 1995 ............................................................................................ 1 77
Timman-Kengis, Yerevan Ofympiad 1996 ............................................................................... 70
Tiviakov-Milov, Groningen 1998 ............................................................................................ 145
Tolnai-Sjoberg, Zalakaros 1992 ............................................................................................ 153
Torres-Smirin, New York 1998 ............................................................................................. 105
Trapl-Tompa, Decin 1977 ........................................................................................................ 32
Ulibin-Milov, Frankfurt (rapid) 1999 ....................................................................................... 61
Vogt-Gheorghiu, Hamburg 1984 ............................................................................................. 72
Vujanovic-Verdier, Comspondence 2000 ................................................................................. 46
Waitzkin-Gurevich.I, New York 1 994 ................................................................................. 151
Watson.W-Mortensen, Heming 199 1 ................................................................................... 1 77
Widenmann-Andersen, Comspondence 1985 ....................................................................... 142
Wydrowski-Panter, Comspondence 1996............................................................................... 125

1 92