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Openings 101

This video series introduces a practical approach to the openings for players USCF 1400-1600.  We focus on how to play the opening successfully without too much theoretical knowledge.  We gear the analysis toward understanding typical middlegame plans and important transitional moments that give the chance of seizing the game initiative.  We study some typical Open games (Petroff and Closed Ruy Lopez) as well as give the intermediate player some guidance on how to set up the Semi-Open and the Closed Games.

 

Petroff:  5.Nc3 Variation analyzes the game Svidler-Bacrot, 2006.  We introduce the opening system for white that does not require heavy theoretical analysis but gives chances of seizing the middlegame initiative.

 

Ruy Lopez:  Closed introduces the classic game Fischer-Keres, 1962.  We study the typical middlegame plan implemented by Fischer and suggest ways of improvement for black.

 

Ruy Lopez:  Anti-Marshall Variation covers the game Kasparov-Leko, 2001.  The Anti-Marshall is an effective tool of avoiding theory, while attaining a playable position.

 

Sicilian:  Dragon suggests the 9.0-0-0 approach to handling the Dragon.  We analyze the game Zufic-Rezan, 2008 that shows the successful approach of familiarity with the initial moves as critical in handling a sharp Dragon subline.

 

Dutch:  Stonewall analyzes the game Beliavsky-Jussupow, 1989.  We emphasize the approach of prophylaxis against black's counterplay as well as general advice on handling the closed game that arises in this opening.

 

Queen's Gambit Declined:  5.Bf4 Variation studies the recent game Kramnik-Carlsen, 2009.  We analyze the complex phase of middlegame transition, focusing on slow equalization as well as ways of breaking equilibrium.

 
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