Monday December 26 IM Valeri Lilov The Catalan Weapon (opening, strategy)
The Catalan is one of the most powerful, yet simple openings known to white pieces. However, very few people know about its strength and the ways to utilize it successfully against black. In his new lecture, IM Lilov presents a beautifully strategic victory by Garry Kasparov vs. Viktor Korchnoi that utilizes all the key aspects of the Catalan weapon!
Tuesday, December 27 IM Bill Paschall European Club Cup Part 3 – The Fake Fianchetto (opening, tactics)
GM Erdos faces an unusual form of the Bogo-Indian/Catalan where black tries to retreat his bishop to d6. White initially plans typical development in Catalan style, but switches plans to open the position with e4 as the game turns into a a type of Slav. It appears that the break with 12..e5 is a new idea in a relatively rare position. White plays ingeniously and launches a quick attack with opposite side castling. Black misses his best defensive chances and the white attack breaks through with decisive force!
Wednesday, December 28 FM Dennis Monokroussos Modern Gambit Play (opening, strategy)
Old-time gambits tended to be about development: a player would sac a pawn (or more) to gain a lead in development, which was used in the service of attacking the enemy king. Contemporary gambits tend to have a different focus, like long-term positional pressure. That’s what the gambit in this game is all about. White’s trendy sac in a sort of Reti/Slav hybrid gave him lots of queenside pressure, and when Black slipped just a bit the result was a paralyzing bind and a speedy win. The moral for all of us is to diversify our gambit play: it’s not just about going for the enemy king!
Thursday, December 29 GM Eugene Perelshteyn Positional Lesson from the World Champion: Carlsen-Karjakin World Champ Match, Rapid Playoff, Game 3 (opening, strategy)
Magnus Carlsen successfully defended his title, but he had to do in the rapid portion of the match. Watch insightful analysis by GM Perelshteyn of how Carlsen masterfully outplays the challenger by giving him a lesson on positional chess. Key concepts to remember: pawn chains, dark square strategy, play on the whole board, and positional pawn sacrifice!
Friday, December 30 IM David Vigorito An Interesting Idea for Black in the Petrosian King’s Indian (opening, middlegame)
Facing the female prodigy Carissa Yip, I run into an ‘inaccuracy’ in the King’s Indian that is supposed to be bad for Black. Carissa went into the line on purpose however, as she had a specific idea in mind. I think her idea is quite viable, although a hasty attacking move led her into strategic difficulties.