Daniel Gormally: English Attack

by ChessBase
10/14/2015 – Are you an 1.e4 player? And are you looking for an effective weapon against the Sicilian? English GM Daniel Gormally might help you. He recommends the English Attack, one of the strongest ways to fight the Najdorf and the Scheveningen. On his first ChessBase DVD Gormally teaches how to play against the Sicilian and entertains by showing famous and exciting games.

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Daniel Gormally: English Attack - Review

By Tomasz Mincewicz

Of all the openings the Sicilian is the most popular. Almost 25% of all games start with 1.e4 c5. But why is the Sicilian so popular? First of all, it often leads to sharp and exciting positions in which both sides can play for a win. If Black knows what he is doing, lines such as the Najdorf or the Scheveningen can be lethal weapons. And if you play 1.e4 you better know what to do against them.

Today, in the time of huge databases and strong chess engines it might sometimes seem simple to build an opening repertoire. However, just following the most often played moves or the proposals of an engine is not enough. To play your openings successfully you need to know the ideas behind them. Here, grandmasters who explain their pet openings or lines are an invaluable help.

Thus, The English Attack by Daniel Gormally is a must-watch for every aspiring chess player. Gormally not only offers a wonderful guide that steers you through the Sicilian labyrinth, he also shows how to think and play in dynamic and tactically rich positions. And he offers a repertoire against the Najdorf and the Scheveningen.

The repertoire starts with the move 6.f3, which initiates the so-called English Attack, a line popularized in the 1980s by Nigel Short and other English players. Seeing the many magnificent sacrifices and attacks played with this variation, chess players all over the world soon followed the example of the English masters. Even World Champions such as Garry Kasparov or Vishy Anand later took up the line and played it with success.

Gormally shows the key theory of the English Attack and recommends a repertoire against all crucial moves by Black. Doing so he presents a number of fantastic Sicilian games and uses these classical examples to show how to deal with Black’s counterattacking attempts and how to avoid typical “Sicilian traps”. Gormally also offers more general advice and reveals how to play sharp positions. In fact, he encourages everyone to sharpen their play style of play, claiming that adding the English Attack to your repertoire will improve your results significantly.

However, even though Gormally presents tactical games with enormous complications he does not drown the audience in variations but explains the lines, plans, and structure of his repertoire carefully to make his audience understand the position.

In the second part of the DVD Gormally turns into a quizmaster and presents typical tactical puzzles which allow you to test your tactical skills and to see how well you understand the English Attack.

Here is one such puzzle: The black king is walking around in the middle of the board and looks dangerously exposed. However, White is two pieces down and has to mate Black. But how?

Solution: White plays the stunning rook sacrifice 1.Rd4!!, threatening 2.Ng3#. If Black takes the rook, White mates with 2.Qe4#. And if Black plays 1…Rg8 to prevent 2.Ng3#, White has 2.Rf4+!, forcing 2…exf4 3.Qe4#.


The English Attack is an excellent DVD which enables you to understand the Sicilian defence better and to play it with more success. It offers well-prepared and well-presented lectures that combine a repertoire against the Najdorf and the Scheveningen with a wealth of useful general advice. This makes Gormally’s first ChessBase DVD invaluable training material.

Sample Video:

Daniel Gormally:
English Attack

• Video running time: 7 hours (English)
• With interactive training including video feedback
• Training database with 50 essential games and analyses
• Including CB 12 Reader

€25.13 without VAT (for Customers outside the EU)
$28.68 (without VAT)

This DVD can be purchased as a hard copy or it can be downloaded directly from the Internet, that way sparing you the few days needed for it to arrive by post.

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