Viktor Korchnoi vs the King's Indian Defense

by ChessBase
7/8/2008 – Few players have been as implacably opposed to a major opening as Viktor Korchnoi has been to the KID. For at least five decades he has been in the vanguard of those combating this opening, developing countless new ideas in the struggle to prove an advantage for the white pieces. In his Playchess lecture Dennis Monokroussos shows a milestone example from 1987. Learn and enjoy.

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Dennis Monokroussos writes:

Few players have been as implacably opposed to a major opening as Viktor Korchnoi has been to the King's Indian Defense, but at least he can be said to have earned the right to his principled antipathy. For at least five decades, he has been in the vanguard of those combating the KID, developing countless new ideas (not just new moves) in the struggle to prove an advantage for the white pieces.

Along these lines, one game that deservedly received a lot of buzz at the time was his victory over Croatian grandmaster Krunoslav Hulak, from the 1987 Interzonal in Zagreb. The position after 1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Be2 e5 6.d4 0-0 7.0-0 Nc6 8.d5 Ne7 9.Ne1 Nd7 10.Be3 f5 11.f3 f4 12.Bf2 g5

remains a crucial tabiya to this day, and it is here that Korchnoi sprang a brilliant new idea on his opponent. Standard operating procedure involves finding a way to favorably execute the c5 advance while slowing Black's attempts to execute White's king. Moves like 13.b4 and 13.Rc1 were commonplace, while White would often make moves like Kh1, so as to meet ...g3 with Bg1, and to then answer ...gxh2 with Bf2. White generally can't dream of a move like h3, on account of various ...Bxh3 possibilities. Korchnoi's ingenious idea aided the prosecution of his queenside play while safeguarding his king, but in a new way.

How did he do it? Tune in tomorrow, Wednesday night at 9 p.m. ET, and find out! The game doesn't just feature a significant theoretical idea, but is a very well-played effort from start to finish. Finally, and most importantly for the King's Indian aficionados in the audience, we'll see the cure for his idea. You won't want to miss it!

(Note for first-timers: the shows are free to watch, and you can find directions explaining how to tune in, here.)

Dennis Monokroussos' Radio ChessBase lectures begin on Wednesdays at 9 p.m. EST, which translates to 02:00h GMT, 03:00 Paris/Berlin, 13:00h Sydney (on Thursday). Other time zones can be found at the bottom of this page. You can use Fritz or any Fritz-compatible program (Shredder, Junior, Tiger, Hiarcs) to follow the lectures, or download a free trial client.

You can find the exact times for different locations in the world at World Time and Date. Exact times for most larger cities are here. And you can watch older lectures by Dennis Monokroussos offline in the Chess Media System room of Playchess:

Enter the above archive room and click on "Games" to see the lectures. The lectures, which can go for an hour or more, will cost you between one and two ducats. That is the equivalent of 10-20 Euro cents (14-28 US cents).

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Dennis Monokroussos is 41, lives in South Bend, IN, where he teaches chess and occasionally works as an adjunct professor of philosophy at the University of Notre Dame and Indiana University-South Bend.

At one time he was one of the strongest juniors in the U.S. and has reached a peak rating of 2434 USCF, but several long breaks from tournament play have made him rusty. He is now resuming tournament chess in earnest, hoping to reach new heights.

Dennis has been working as a chess teacher for ten years now, giving lessons to adults and kids both in person and on the internet, worked for a number of years for New York’s Chess In The Schools program, where he was one of the coaches of the 1997-8 US K-8 championship team from the Bronx, and was very active in working with many of CITS’s most talented juniors.

When Dennis Monokroussos presents a game, there are usually two main areas of focus: the opening-to-middlegame transition and the key moments of the middlegame (or endgame, when applicable). With respect to the latter, he attempts to present some serious analysis culled from his best sources (both text and database), which he has checked with his own efforts and then double-checked with his chess software.

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