chess24 Jul 12, 2018 | 3:51 PMby chess24 staff

Jan's Opening Clinic 20: Part 4

In Season 20, Episode 4 of Jan's Opening Clinic, one of the world's leading chess theoreticians, Grandmaster Jan Gustafsson, once again gives advice to chess24 Premium Members. Topics include the idea Magnus Carlsen used in the Berlin to beat Levon Aronian, the hyper-aggressive "Fried Liver Attack" and why the Nimzo might be a good choice if you're afraid, as many clearly are, about memorization. Jan notes, "the Nimzo's more of a common sense opening than pretty much any other major opening". 

You can find Jan's earlier answers in Jan's Opening Clinic 20: Part 1Part 2 and Part 3, with the questions all posed under this article. And here's the latest instalment:

One interesting theme in this episode is opening names, with the "Fried Liver Attack" attack in the Italian apparently, and appropriately, a translation from the Italian - the "Fegatello" Attack sees White aiming to cook Black's king after sacrificing a knight (we're not sure that's quite the original sense of the word/name...).  

Question 4 asks Jan to choose between the English Attack (6.Be3) and the Adams Attack (6.h3) in the Najdorf, and Jan mused that it was unfair that Mickey Adams had two lines of the Najdorf in his honour. It turns out, however, that the Adams in the Adams Attack is the US Master Weaver W. Adams, whose views on how strong 1.e4 is were summed up by the title of his book, "White to Play and Win". Jan doesn't quite share that conviction, beginning one sentence, "In my very practical worldview, if the aliens forced me to play 1.e4, I would..."

Once again we've added clickable timestamps that let you go straight to a question that interests you - you can also find those timestamps in the description under the video at YouTube:

  1. rokko: French - is 3.e5 a good way to avoid the dxe4 Rubinstein? (00:01:08
  2. thrawn: Berlin - is 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.0-0 Nxe4 5.Re1 Nd6 6.Nxe5 Be7 7.Bf1 Nxe5 8.Rxe5 0-0 9.d4 Bf6 10.Re1 Nf5 11.d5!? a la Carlsen an option for White? (00:05:51
  3. yvesm: How to get a small edge against 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 e6, 4.Qc2 or 4.e3? (00:09:50)
  4. breaker 90: Najdorf, 6.Be3 or 6.h3? (00:15:39)
  5. Ewok: Nimzo move-order to reach the Semi-Slav - can the Nimzo 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 be played without much "memorization"? (00:22:16)
  6. aisthesis: French - 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.Nf3 Bd6 - alternatives to 5.c4? (00:26:59)
  7. wesonthehudson: Italian - is 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Ng5 d5 5.exd5 Nxd5 6.Nxf7 any good? (00:31:08)
  8. luzhinsparachute: Is 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Qb6 playable? (00:36:59
  9. jorgecc: Queen's Indian 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 - what are the differences between 4...Ba6 and 4...Bb7? (00:42:05

The 5th part of Jan's answers will be published at 17:00 CEST on Thursday, 19 July.

See also:


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