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Thank you! needed somethign to counter sicilian and have started playing this after watching the 3 videos. Had initial success, so feels good:)
Great series.... Thank you.
Thank you GM Kaidanov. I have always gone for the Bb5 vs. sicilian for white. But I think it's time for a change 2.c3!
Beautiful series and great introduction to the 2.c3 Sicilian. I know I have benefitted greatly and sincerely thank GM Kaidanov for explaining this for us.
GM Kaidanov's recommendations do not address Palliser's recommendation for how Black should play against 2.c3 though. So don't abandon ship Sicilian players! Palliser likes the 2...d5 and ...Bg4 line, so 1.e4 c5 2.c3 d5 3.exd5 Qxd5 4.d4 Nc6 5.Nf3 Bg4 6.Be2 cxd4 7.cxd4 e6 8.h3 Bh5 9.Nc3 (or 9.0-0 Nf6 10.Nc3) a la GM Kaidanov, but where should Black's Queen now go? GM Kaidanov always assumed the Queen would be going to d6 and in fact showed no other possibility. But true Sicilian defenders know the best square for the Queen is a5. After 9...Qa5, Black is doing just fine, thank you. In fact, Black has reached what Palliser refers to as "an important tabiya" of this line (Fighting the Anti-Sicilians, p. 15). After 10.0-0 Nf6 11.Be3 (GM Kaidanov liked Be3 in the ...Qd6 line, so presumably he would play it here too.) 11...Bd6! (Palliser's punctuation mark.) Palliser explains the move by saying "Not a standard development of the dark-squared bishop in IQP positions in general but a good one in this particular case in which Black's queen and light-squared bishop are both actively deployed. Black wants to take control of the e5-square and may even, should White play too slowly, be able to reroute his c6-knight via e7 to the d5-square, the perfect blockading square." 12.a3 0-0 13.Qb3 (13.b4 Qd8!=) 13...Ne7! and Palliser shows how 14.Qxb7?!, 14.Bd2, and 14.Nb5 are dealt with, e.g. 14.Nb5 Bb8 15.Rac1 Nfd5= Aktunc - Gilimshin, Corr. 2003.
Palliser's treatment was more extensive than what I have given above, and unlike GM Kaidanov I am not giving a full game score since I am writing rather than producing a video. Besides, Palliser's book is under copyright. I am just saying that Palliser's point is that Black should retreat the Queen to a5 and then play more actively. Having a good understanding of the principles of IQP positions, and there is no better treatise on them I know of than Baburin's misnomered book Pawn Structure Chess (he only discusses IQP positions), will keep Black in good stead. From Baburin's book I learned that Black has to always have an answer to White's d5 pawn push, and Black has to fight for space on equal terms.
Thanks for the great three videos! As I play sicilian myself and usually have problems how to resist 2 c3 I would like to know how to beat the Alapin.
Very nice series! Thank you very much!
I just bought a book on the anti-sicilians,and these videos were a nice extra little supplemement.Thanks.
Thanks dear chess.com friend. You have opened up so much new territory for me. I am dedicated to c3 Sicilian. Wish I could play it like this sooner than later.
Thank you Greg,this mini series was fantastic! Also belated congrats on your Kings Island win! It was a thrill seeing you in action.
Very helpful! Thanks so much! I've been using this system for a while, and will continue employing it.
by GM Gregory Kaidanov
Part 3 of GM Kaidanov's latest video series on the Alapin continues today with more great examples of IQP attacking potential! He provides several examples from the games of GM Vajda, and points out many of the common tactical patterns that exist from the common middlegame structure that arises from the Alapin. He also reviews many of the sideline approaches for black.
Intermediate | Advanced
Sicilian Defense: Alapin Variation (B22)
Related: « Part 2
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GM Gregory Kaidanov
Considered one of "the" premier chess trainers in America for more than ten years, Chess.com is very proud to add Grandmaster Gregory Kaidanov to its list of prestigious Video Authors. Arguably one of the strongest GMs never to have won the US Championship, GM Kaidanov's list of accomplishments does however include first place finishes in many other major events, including first place at both the World Open and US Open in 1992. A certified FIDE Senior Trainer, his reputation as a chess coach precedes him internationally. Gregory currently resides in Lexington, Kentucky with his wife Valeria and their three children.
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