The Caro-Kungfu-Kann! by GM Magesh and GM Arun

The Caro-Kungfu-Kann! by GM Magesh and GM Arun

18 | Opening Theory

You have probably noticed that we have changed our title names in the article. You must have read plenty of articles and maybe seen some videos where people and sometimes Anand himself try to explain the secret behind his first and last names. Well, we are from the same part of the world and we carry the same confusions associated with our names. We had initially been putting in our last names in the title of the article since that is the most common naming convention around the world. However, our last names also happen to be our father's names in India and in my state in particular (Tamil Nadu). So looking at the names GM Panchanathan or GM Prasad (this is actualy a middle name!) feels like the GM title has been awarded to someone else! Anyways let us not get our head spinning over this naming debate, from now on we are just going to stick with Magesh and Arun instead of Panchanathan and Prasad.

Today we will be looking into the Caro-Kann defense. This opening has always been associated with solid play. Often, when a friend of mine needs only a draw or needs to play it safe, they have chosen this defense. However, it will be interesting to look at some of the games that we have chosen today, they are purely the 'opposite' of solid. You are probably thinking "what is the deal with Kungfu in the title?"; it will be apparent when you take a look at the games.

We will try to increase our focus on the opening phase. For those who are interested in going through the entire game, it will be available in the game viewer, however we have decided to stick to just the opening phase for annotations.





The Bayonnet Attack, it is one of the popular continuations for white. White tries to gain a few extra tempos by attacking black's vulnerable light-squared bishop. In the process he gains a huge space advantage on the kingside. Black, in the meantime will most logically try to create some counter play in the center with the c5 pawn break.

6.h4?! does not help much after h5! 7.g5 and white completely loses the battle of light squares.


In the next game, we will take a look at black's ideas after 7...h5 and how white reacts to it.

In the next game, we will take a look at some other ideas for black after sacrificing his h5 pawn.

In the final game we will be taking a look at 6...Ne7. It seems to be less popular of late in comparison with the direct 6...c5 that we saw earlier. However it is still one of the important possibilities for black.

After watching the fire works in the chess board, i think it is more than justifiable to associate Kungfu with this article! We hope you have as much fun as we had in annotating these fantastic games. Next week we will be working on the Panov-Botvinnik attack in the Caro-Kann defense
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