Tomorrow evening’s Themed Opening Tournament in the Chess Bud Portal is dedicated to a dynamic and confrontational black defense in the mainline of the English Opening. King’s Pawn players will recognise the position after 1. c4 e5 as effectively being a Sicilian Defense in Reverse with white having an extra tempo (move). The million dollar question that chess players have grappled with for generations is whether playing on the flank and having an extra move is enough to compensate white for conceding the centre to black. Black has many interesting options after white’s most popular second move 2. Nc3. A practical line that has scored well at the top level recently is the direct 2…Nc6 3.Nf3 f5!? whereupon black adopts one of the most dangerous set-ups against the Sicilian Defence (in reverse!) – The Grand-Prix Attack. This interesting line has received the imprimatur of Super GM Vladimir Fedoseev (FIDE 2683) who had a 100% score in the line from five games between 2017 and 2021. Only this April, in a Titled Tuesday Online Event, the current World No. 6 Fabiano Caruana (FIDE 2773) lost his way in a much better but highly complex middlegame losing to the talented sixteen year-old Indian GM Bharath Subramaniyam. While white might be able to claim a traditional plus in this most tricky of lines with deft positional play, black has numerous ways to muddy the waters and create practical counter-chances.
Enrolled students can now play through four deeply annotated Master Games which demonstrate the key strategic ideas for both white and black in the database section of your portal account. (See ‘English Opening – Portal Tournament Database‘) Tonight’s tournament is 4 rounds/ 10 minutes + 3 seconds each/ two games with white / two games with black. Let’s Play Chess!
Note: Weekly themed opening tournaments are open to students who have enrolled for a Summer Camp or students who have a subscription to the Chess Bud Online Summer Program.