Fast and Furious: Attacking ideas in the Grünfeld Exchange Variation

by Robert Ris
3/26/2020 – Looking at the games of the Candidates one could see the influence of AlphaZero on modern chess, as in various games a quick launch of the h-pawn was seen. IM Robert Ris elaborates...Live from 18:00 UTC (19:00 CET / 14:00 EDT) and free to watch on-demand for a limited time (or forever for ChessBase Premium account holders. To chat when Robert is live, please visit or login via Playchess for Windows. In the diagram, it's Black to play!

Mastering Pattern Recognition in the Opening Mastering Pattern Recognition in the Opening

Pattern recognition is an important tool in modern chess, as it helps you to understand better the characteristics of a position. Particularly when you have been confronted with a surprise opening system played by your opponent, it helps when you can just


7.♗c4 and attacking ideas with h2-h4

Dealing with the Grünfeld, top players have switched back to the former Main Line, the Exchange Variation with 7.Bc4. Tonight I will elaborate on this topic, explaining the tactical and strategical ideas behind the advance of the rook's pawn. Despite it's theoretical still OK for Black, this approach has caused Black a lot of problems in recent games.

The live show is free to watch and available on-demand for ChessBase Premium accounts.

Exercise: A classic example of a 17-year old Magnus Carlsen defeating Ukrainian legend Vassily Ivanchuk. Do you see what Magnus had in mind after 22...h6?


Move the pieces on the live diagram — solution below!

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Robert is an International Master who mostly spends his time training and coaching talented youngsters. On the PlayChess server The Fast and the Furious is a popular show where he explains sharp opening lines for a wider audience. He is also a well-known ChessBase author who produced numerous DVDs and regularly contributes to ChessBase Magazine as well. Since 2015 he is the organizer of the Dutch Rapid Championships in his home town Amstelveen. He has started a YouTube channel with chess analysis as well.


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