"From cool to highly speculative"

by ChessBase
1/2/2022 – In his ChessBase Magazine column "Topical opening traps", GM Rainer Knaak regularly examines examples from current tournament practice. He also presents three of them in the video analysis in each CBM. Especially for club players, his contributions offer exciting suggestions. Thanks to the range of topics, you should be able to find something for your own repertoire in every issue! In addition, the trap expert often shows variations that are rarely seen in top-level chess but must be on one's mind as a club chess player. We offer you an excerpt from Rainer Knaak's collection from ChessBase #205 here, including a video on the Budapest Gambit.

ChessBase Magazine 205 ChessBase Magazine 205

"Special" on Robert Huebner with analyses and videos on strategy and endgame. Firouzja, Oparin, Predke, Sevian, Vitiugov and others comment on their games from the Grand Swiss 2021. Opening videos by Kasimdzhanov, Ragger and Marin. 11 Opening articles


Topical opening traps

Excerpt from Rainer Knaak's trap collection in CBM #205

"Falling into one's own trap" – Budapest Gambit A52

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ng4 4.Bf4 Nc6 5.Nf3 Bb4+ 6.Nc3 Qe7 7.Qd5 Bxc3+ 8.bxc3 Qa3

In this variation of the Budapest Gambit White hangs on to the extra pawn on e5. Instead of accepting its loss with 8...f6 and playing a genuine gambit, Black sometimes tries 8...Qa3 – objectively bad, but then again who can find the engine moves 9.Rb1! or 9.Rd1! (although the most frequently played 9.Rc1 is also really strong). White frequently replies 9.Qd2?!, but then in our recent game Black got caught up in his own trap with 9...Qc5 (the correct move is 9...Qa5) 10.e3 Ngxe5 and White was able to triumph: 11.Nxe5 Nxe5 12.Qd4!  

Video by Rainer Knaak (ChessBase Magazine #205)

"Too greedy" – Sicilian B27

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 g6 3.d4 Bg7 4.dxc5! Qa5+ 5.c3 Qxc5 6.Na3!

Here best of all for White is that the knight move not only sets a trap but is at the same time the strongest move. In a recent game Black accepted the invitation with 6...Bxc3+?, but after 7.bxc3 Qxc3+ 8.Qd2! Qxa1 the lead in development alone would mean a solid plus for White, and moreover 9.Nb5! Na6 10.Nfd4 traps the black queen.

"The queen is a strong piece" – Sicilian B35

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 g6 3.d4 Bg7 4.Nc3 cxd4 5.Nxd4 Nc6 6.Be3 Qa5

Black’s queen move is actually far too risky, since White can immediately get an advantage with several moves. But some people think – and rightly so – that the pin on the Nc3 is not important and believe – wrongly – that they can continue their development with 7.Bc4?. But then the black queen demonstrates its potential and wins a piece with the “unnatural” 7...Qb4!.

"Highly speculative" – Two Knights Defence C57

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Ng5 d5 5.exd5 Nxd5

If 5...Nxd5? is played, then that is usually by weaker players who do not know their theory. But there are also grandmasters who hope that White will not master the tactical complications. That is of course highly speculative, but in a recent game (though it was a blitz one) it worked. There is no clear answer to the question as to whether 6.d4 or 6.Nxf7 is better, but one thing is sure: in both cases White is clearly better. However, in both cases a few precise moves are required.

"Yet again the Bogoljubow" – Slav D12

1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.e3 Bf5 5.cxd5 cxd5 6.Nc3 e6 7.Ne5

The position in the diagram can be reached via very different move orders. If as Black you play the Slav you absolutely must be familiar with it. Since the “normal moves” 7...Nbd7? and 7...Sc6? both lead to disaster because 8.g4! Bg6 9.h4 requires a move by the h-pawn, but after 10.Nxg6 that ruins Black’s structure.

"The idea did not bear fruit" – King’s Indian E94

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Be2 0-0 6.Nf3 Qe8 7.0-0 e5

The queen on e8 immediately catches the eye: not only does it protect e5, but at the same time it attacks the e4-pawn in conjunction with the Nf6. But does the 8.Re1 not cause problems for the queen? No, Black keeps his cool and gets the pawn with 8...exd4 9.Nxd4 Nxe4!. The key to this is 10.Nd5 Qd8 11.Bf3 Nxf2! 12.Kxf2 Qh4+, though 13.g3 (the move seen most often in practice is 13.Kf1?) can keep things level.

You can find the complete article with analyses of all eight traps as well as three videos in the new ChessBase Magazine #205!

ChessBase Magazine #205

Order now at the ChessBase Shop ! Available as a download or on DVD. 


New: ChessBase Magazine #205


On the front page of ChessBase Magazine #205 you will find the special recommendations of the editors - the highlights of the issue to click on and enjoy!

Analyses from the FIDE Grand Swiss 2021 by the winner Alireza Firouzja as well as from Grigoriy Oparin, Yu Yangyi, Alexandr Predke, Samuel Sevian, Nikita Vitiugov and others. A class of its own: Anish Giri comments on his spectacular Black victory over Abhijeet Gupta from the Chess Super League. Or how about a surprise weapon against the popular London System? Sergey Grigoriants explains the ideas and variations after 6...e5! Don't miss the interactive training sessions with Robert Ris!

Special: My favourite Huebner game

CBM authors comment on their favourite games of the former world-class player and candidate finalist. Exclusive collection of 16 games by Robert Huebner from 1970 to 2017.

Top games and master analyses

FIDE Grand Swiss 2021: Alireza Firouzja secured first place despite losing to Fabiano Caruana and thus qualified for the 2022 Candidates Tournament. Firouzja analyses his victory against Nijat Abasov. In addition, Grigoriy Oparin, Yu Yangyi, Alexandr Predke, Samuel Sevian, Nikita Vitiugov, and others comment on their best games.
European Team Championship 2021: Gold for Ukraine, silver for France, bronze for Poland. Radoslaw Wojtaszek analyses his winning h-pawn run against Victor Mikhalevski, and Ivan Saric shows how to hold a draw against an Alireza Firouzja in top form.

"All in one"

Here you can learn everything you need to know about a specific game. And all this on the basis of only one extensively annotated game! Spyridon Kapnisis makes you fit for the Sicilian Rossolimo Variation (1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 d6 4.Bxc6+!? bxc6 5.e5!). Igor Stohl presents early bayonet attacks in the Caro-Kann Exchange Variation and the Spanish Opening.

Opening videos

Gruenfeld expert Markus Ragger appoints the new 5...c5 as the main weapon in the variation with 5.Bd2. Rustam Kasimdzhanov reports on his experiment with the French Advance Variation. And Mihail Marin explains the Huebner System of the Nimzo-Indian Defence.

Markus Ragger: Gruenfeld Defence
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.Bd2 c5
Rustam Kasimdzhanov: French Advance Variation
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 c5 4.c3 Qb6 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.Be2 cxd4 7.cxd4 Nh6 8.Bxh6 Qxb2 9.Nbd2 gxh6
Mihail Marin: Nimzo Indian Huebner Variation
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e3 c5 5.Bd3 Nc6 6.Nf3 Bxc3+ 7.bxc3 d6

New ideas for your repertoire

CBM #205 offers many exciting ideas for your next games with 11 opening articles:

Petra Papp: Benko Gambit 4.cxb5 a6 5.b6 e6
Krisztian Szabo: Nimzowitsch Sicilian 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.e5 Nd5
Robert Ris: Sicilian Najdorf 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Qc7?!
Christian Braun: French Tarrasch 8.0–0 g5!
Evgeny Postny: Four Knights Rubinstein Variation 5.0-0
Renato Quintiliano: Italian with 6...d5 / 11.Bb3!
Lars Schandorff: Ruy Lopez with 5.Qe2
Sergey Grigoriants: London System 5.Qb3 c4 6.Qc2 e5!
Alexey Kuzmin: Gruenfeld with 7.Nf3/8.h3
Imre Hera: Queen's Indian 4.g3 Bb7 5.Bg2 c5
Patrick Zelbel: King's Indian recipes against 6.Be2

Topical opening traps

"From cool to highly speculative" Our expert Rainer Knaak takes a close look at eight traps from current tournament practice, three of which he also presents in video format. Budapest Gambit, Sicilian, King's Indian and much more.

Move by Move

Let Robert Ris put you to the test. Together with the IM from the Netherlands, replay Nikita Vitiugov's spectacular game against Andreikin. Can you find the moves of the new Russian champion?

"Huebner's strategic skills”

How can Robert Huebner's style of play best be described? Mihail Marin has analysed many of Huebner's games from the Interzonals and sheds light on various elements of his playing style. The Romanian GM himself is surprised by the results of his analysis!

The Classic

Dorian Rogozenco presents the game between Botwinnik and the then World Champion Alekhine from the AVRO tournament in 1938. "An impressive game, in one direction from the start"!

Tactics: "Bishops unleashed!"

Train with Oliver Reeh's collection of 36 games, peppered with lots of training questions and three interactive videos! "My favourites" is best solved together with the International Master in the interactive format with video feedback!

Excelling in endgames: "Endgames by Dr. Robert Huebner" and much more.

Endgame expert Karsten Müller contributes three different articles to this issue. In addition to a selection of Robert Huebner's best endgames (incl. video), the GM from Hamburg presents highlights from the Hou Yifan Challenge 2021 and also deals in detail with letters to the editor.

ChessBase Magazine #205

Order now at the ChessBase Shop ! Available as a download or on DVD.


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