Queens gambit. The Furman variation

Oct 26, 2014, 11:57 PM |

First som history.

This line ( variation ) takes its name from a well - known Russian theoretician and grandmaster: Semyon Abramovich Furman.(December 1, 1920 – March 17, 1978) he was a Soviet, chess International Grandmaster, who played numerous of games with it in the late 1950s and 1960s.During the eighties Furman had a few comrades - in - arms, but the popularity of the variation rapidly increased when it was adopted by renowned players like Portisch,Timman,Kortchnoi,Gelfand and later Anand and Topalov.

1.d4 - d5.2.c4 - dxc4.3.Nf3 - Nf6.4.e3 - e6.5.Bxc4 - c5.6.Qe2 - a6.7.dxc5 - Bxc5. ( the main position for the Furman variation )

( the position with an isolatede pawn after 6. ... - cxd4.7.exd4, will not be considered in this blog. )

( see diagram 1 )

I have to tell you dear reader.When you look at this line ( read this blog ) you may learn a ALL NEW LINE in the Queens gambit.  I know by experence that, not many, not even strong player ( from 1900 and up )  know´s this line, so you may have the elements of surprise, wich is nice.Why is that ?! Well.  First of all this is a bit of an old line in the Queens gamebit, maybe that is why, But also most player dosen like to take the offer on c4, and go for lines as king indian defence - Gryndfeld  - Slave or Nimzo indian defence ( etc ). playing the Queens pawn move 1.d4, dose require that you use time on a few possible lines, and you shout Also be familiar with the isolatede pawn position after 6. ... - cxd4. ( the chance for you to play this line may not be more then 1 out 10 games. So it occurs very rare. )

From the position ( diagram 1 ) White have 3 possible variations that is with in this line. The first on, is where White choose to delay castling king side ( 8.a3 ) the next is where White chooses to puch forword in the center ( 8.e4 ) and the last on, is where White chooses to move the king in to the safe zone ( 8.0-0 ) which is the line I will deal with in this blog .

8.0-0 - Nbd7 . Black have alot of moves to choose from in the position after 8.0-0. I chooses this replay from Black as this is the move I meet most when I play this line.Black can also play. 8. ... - 0-0.8. ... - b5.8. ... - Qc7 and 8. ... - Nc6. I will use my time on Nbd7 in this blog.

9.e4 - b5.10.Bd3 - Bb7.

The idea in this line ( with the Qe2 move ) is to have the Queen to support the pawn - puch - forword move e4 - e5, trying to break Black position in to two, and take control over the center, and use the C2 H7 diagonal.Also White can use the free square, e4 to attack Blacks king side position with eks: Ne4 - Neg5 idea´s. You can see that the Queen is very good placed, the Queen helps to protect the bishop on c4 and supporting the Queenside as it giving support to b2, when the bishop on c1 is moving, and aim´s also for attacking idea´s like a4, trying to make Black´s Queenside, weak and attack in the A and ore C line. 

Lets have a look on the position.


( see diagram 2 )

In this position you can see that Black have all he´s pieces developed. He´s knight´s is aktiv, the bishops is also aktive, and Black is ready to move the king in to safety. Looking at Whites position, you can see that White, allready have he´s king in the safe zone, and White have activated 1 bishop, 1 knight, and the Queen.

There is two lines White can choose from, which is in the spirit of this line in the position.11. a4 and 11.Nbd2. ( see diagram 3 )

In this block I will concentrate on 11.Nbd2, wich is my personal choice, when I play this line. I prefer this move for several reasons.

First of all White, developer a minor piece. ( the knight on b1 ) secondly, I belive that White may use the a4 puch later on in the game, and last the move Nbd2, requires circumspection from Black, which is borne out from the example: 11. ... - 0-0.12.e5 - Ng4?.

( 12. ... - Nd5!?N This move have not been analyse at all in NIC 44. I belive that Black shout have a good chance to play for an equel position after eks:13.Ne4 - Rc8. ( It seems that I keep running in to this rook move all the time ( see vareation A1 below ) 14.Bd2 - Be7.15.Rfd1 - h6. whit an equel position  )13.Ne4 - Rc8.14.Bf4 - f6.15.exf6 - Ngxf6.16.a4! with a clear advantage to White. Taimanov - Bazen, Buenos Aires 1960, and 11. ... - e5.12.Nb3 - 0-0.13.Rd1 - Bb6.14.Nh4 - Qb8? ( more carefull is g6).15.Nf5 - g6.16.Nh6+ - Kg7.17.Bc2!? ( Bd2 is maybe better, as it developer the bishop, maybe this move shout be analyse more carefull.I have not testede yet, so I cant be sure.) leaves White with a small advantage, sins Black´s kingside have been weaken by the move g6 ) Sigmagin - Kviatkovsky, Moscow 1961.


According to NIC Yearbook 44 ( NIC = New in chess ) 1997, Alexander Raetsky, who have use som time on a great analyse on this line, but use most time on the move 11.a4, belives that Black is more or less forced to play the prophylactic move Be7 after 11.Nbd2.

I have tryed to get a comment from Alexander both via NIC, and via facebook, sins according to my analyse Black, can improve on both move 11 and  12.This block is dedicated, to that "brave" statment, as I am not GM - IM - FM or anything like that. 

Line A.11. Nbd2 - Rc8 !? (N)

Line B.11. Nbd2 - 0-0.12.e5 - Nd5!? (N)

Line C.11. Nbd2 - Qb6?!. (N)

Although I agree that 11. ... - Be7, is a good prophylactic move for Black, and that I have never seen my 3 new move ( my (N) means NEW MOVE ) in any game, I belive that Black can wait a move or so, to move the bishop and see what White, want to do.And that is with out White can prove any real benefit or threat, right now.

Lets take a look at the first line .

Line A: 11.Nbd2 - Rc8!?N. This idea is MY OWN idea. I have NOT found it in any game what so ever,or in any database.I am not saying that no on have play it somwhere, but I cant find it anywhere. I belive this move shout be testede in the future, befor a verdict can be made, but it looks like an improvement compared to the analyse in NIC 44.

(See diagram 4)

To me 11. ... - Rc8 seems to be ok for Black. First of all,I would like to point out that Black, aktivet he´s rook, wich take an aktiv part in the C line.Also the rook helps protecting the bishop, and my last point is that White, can´t get much advantage out of the puch forword move e5 according to my analyse: 12.e5 - Nd5.13.Nb3 - 0-0.14.Bd2 - Qb6.15.Rac1 - Be7.16.h4 - h6 ( see diagram 5 ) With a equal position.Here on possible continuation could be: 17.Bb1 - f5.18.Ba5 - Qa7.19.Nbd4 - Nf4.20.Qd2 - Bxf3.21.Nxf3 - Ng6.22.Ne4 - Rxc1.23.Rxc1 - Ndxe4.24.Nxe6 - Nxh4.25.Qc3 - Qa8. With an complicated but equel position, and after 26.Qg3 ( only move )  - Rf7.27.Bc3 - Qd5.28.Nf4 - Qd6. things are fare from clear. ( see diagram 6 ) 

Line B: 11.Nbd2 - 0-0.12.e5  Nd5!?N.13.Ne4 - Be7.14.Neg4 - g6.15.Bd2 - Nc5.16.Bc2 - Qb6.17.Rfd1 - Rac8. With equel position. ( see diagram 7 )

Line C. 11.Nbd2 - Qb6.I found this move one day, when I was working on this line after my choise of move: 11.Nbd2. How ever it seem that Black dosen get much out of this optimistic move, after I have analyse it more carefull. one possible line could be.

12.Nb3 - 0-0.13.Bd2 - Bd6.14.Rac1 - Rfc8.15.Rfd1 - Rxc1.16.Rxc1 - e5. wich seems to benefit White, more then Black, sins White have more freedom in the position. ( see diagram 8 )

Conclusion. Playing this line require that you use som time on the position after Black´s possible move:6. ... - cxd4, wich give White an isolatede pawn position. However if Black accepts the gambit and does not leave white, with the isolated pawn position, and dosen know this line, you may have the advantage. My favorite respons to Black´s 8. ... - Nbd7, is a nice attempt, to get more out of position then 11.a4 give´s. Although the move11.Nbd2 - Rc8, need to be testede befor a verdict can be made,I like to belive that White obtains a small edge sins the knight move is a development of a piece. The line is probably best for player over 1500 sins it requires that you have a good understanding of the middlegame and chess, generally speaking. How ever it dosen mean that you can´t get your self  familiar with the line, and who know´s?!. Maybe even win over the clubmaster in your chess club, if you are in one.As I have point out befor, not many know´s this line, so maybe that can benefit you...

I wich you good luck

Thanks for reading this block.