Monday, November 14, 2016

Morozevich Anti-Bird 2...h5!?

Birds Opening maintains a certain popularity at the club level around the world. White likes the laser focused repertoire. Black is annoyed at the limited possibilities available for counter attack. In my Bird & Dutch book I share my adventures on both sides of 1.f4 and 1…f5. The standard Bird’s Opening 1.f4 d5 resembles a Dutch Defence, but here Black is a move behind. Who wants to play an opening a move behind? Only From Gambit players.

Maksim Chigaev is a Russian grandmaster born in 1996. In 2015 Chigaev began playing 1.f4 in games that made my database. His record as White after 24 games is +12 =6 -6. That’s great! Some of his opponents were rated over 2700. Grandmaster Alexander Morozevich is sometimes rated 2700. Years ago Morozevich made it to Number 2 in the World behind Gary Kasparov. Like most of us, Moro does not face the Bird’s Opening very often. In 2014 Morozevich won the game Bocharov (2467) vs Morozevich (2731) at a St. Petersburg Rapid event. That game began 1.f4 d5 and 0-1 in 39 moves.

GM Alexander Morozevich takes on this Birds Opening with the flexible 1.f4 g6. GM Chigaev chose to play a reversed Leningrad with 2.g3. Morozevich chose the move 2...h5!? The only other game I have with this is G.B. Smith vs J.T. Farrand in the 1969 British Correspondence Championship. Black won after 3.Bg2 h4 4.Nc3 e5 5.d3 Bc5 6.Nh3 d5 7.fxe5 Bxh3 and 0-1 in 28.

Chigaev (2551) - Morozevich (2683), TCh-RUS Blitz 2016 Sochi RUS (7.1), 07.10.2016 begins 1.f4 g6 2.g3 h5 3.Nf3 d5 4.c4 d4 5.Rg1 [5.Bg2 Nh6 6.b4 Bg7 7.Bb2=] 5...Nc6 6.Bg2 h4 7.b4 hxg3 8.hxg3 Bg7 9.b5 [9.Qb3=] 9...Nb8 10.a4 Nf6 11.Ra3 c5 12.e3 [12.a5 a6=/+] 12...Bf5 [12...Nh5=/+] 13.d3 dxe3 14.Bxe3 Nbd7 15.Nbd2 [15.Rh1 Rxh1+ 16.Bxh1 Qc7=/+] 15...Ng4 16.Bf2 [16.Nf1 Qc7-/+] 16...Nxf2 17.Kxf2 Nf6 18.Ne5 Qd4+ 19.Kf1 Nh5 20.Bxb7 [20.Ne4 Nxg3+ 21.Nxg3 Qxf4+ 22.Nf3 Qxg3-+] 20...Bxe5 [20...Nxg3+ 21.Rxg3 Qxf4+ 22.Kg2 Bxe5-+] 21.Nf3 Nxg3+ 22.Rxg3 Qxf4 23.Qe1 Bd4 24.Kg2 Rd8 25.Bc6+ [25.Bd5 Rd6-+] 25...Kf8 26.Nxd4 Rxd4 27.a5 [27.Qe3 Qh4-+] 27...Qh4 28.Qe5 [28.Qg1 Rg4-+] 28...Rh5 29.Qb8+ Kg7 30.b6 Rf4 31.Qe5+ Kh7 32.Rf3 Qh2+ 33.Kf1 Rxf3+ 0-1

You may also like: King Pawn (1.e4 e5) and Queen Pawn (1.d4 d5)
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