Caro Kann Players: What do you play as white?

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #61


    pfren wrote:
    ThrillerFan wrote:

    A Catalan setup against the Slav is bad.  The Catalan should only be played after Black has committed to ...e6 with the Bishop behind the pawn chain (i.e. 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.g3 or 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3).  Lines like 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.g3 are not good for White at all.

    You are wrong.

    What do ya know?  Another imbecile that just says "You are wrong" with nothing to back it up!

    I will trust a GM, like Avrukh, over some IM Wanna Be on  He's like the Catalan Guru of the 20th century.  Recommends it again the Nimzo, QGD, etc.  Fianchettos the King's Bishop against most anything else in Grandmaster Repertoire 2.  Fianchetto KID, Fianchetto Grunfeld, Fianchetto against the Benko, Benoni, you name it!

    EXCEPT THE SLAV!   Why???  Because it's no good!  Lines where Black controls d5 and hasn't buried his own Bishop yet are where White shouldn't be fianchettoing his own Bishop!  That's why it works against the Nimzo and QGD (i.e. Burial of the light-squared Bishop) along with the King's Indian, Benoni, Benko, etc (i.e. Lack of control of d5).  The reason it works against the Grunfeld (i.e. 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 d5 [or 3...c6 and 4...d5]) is that in lines where c6 and d5 are played, Black normally wouldn't want to play g6 because the Bishop often wants to go there.  Now that the Knight has lost his best square, c6, to the pawn, he usually will be developed on d7.  Black would like to unbury his Bishop, but to do that, to say, f5, he usually needs g6 or h7 available to avoid getting the Bishop trapped.  Well, with ...g6 pushed, that's not available, so White's fine with Fianchettoing his Bishop.

    So next time, before saying something stupid like "You are Wrong", try backing yourself up!  I know my Opening Theory when it comes to ideas for White in Queen's Pawn Openings!  You want to outsmart me?  Try doing it in the Najdorf, where I'm weak!  There's a reason I avoid it from both sides!

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #62


    I don't believe anyone who has never even attained a master title 'knows their Opening Theory' for White in queen's pawn openings (who isn't at least a very strong correspondence player and I have seen no evidence of this) and I did reply to pfren's post giving some lines to support his statement. It's perfectly reasonable to play g3 against a Slav setup, and it's probably at least as good as the lines Avrukh actually recommends. In fact, his biggest error in the whole 1.d4 volume one book was in his recommendation against the Slav in an important line where White players who followed his advice lost several critical games that showed that the line was in fact terrible. Avrukh made the mistake of trusting the engine too much there.

    You might also note that Avrukh does NOT recommend the lines he plays against the Slav because the theory would become outdated too quickly. Do you know all of the theory in the main lines of the Slav, or do you play his 4.e3 stuff?

    By the way, my post #44 gives a couple of lines showing chances for White advantage after 4.g3 Bf5, and suggests 4...Bg4 as a better try for equalizing. I don't know or particularly care to speculate what lines pfren had in mind when he made his comment, but I have played both sides of this stuff. As a player with a rating very similar to yours, I feel that it is way outside my areas of expertise to even suggest to know anything about openings, but I could ask a few of my GM friends. Var Akobian would probably have something to say about it.

    Oh, and your post was a bunch of fluff about why it is OK to fianchetto the Bishop against non-Slav setups but you didn't provide a single line to justify why it might not be okay. I think I understand your thought process but ultimately I agree with pfren on this one. g3 is perfectly playable. Black certainly doesn't get an advantage out of it, and White has plenty of chances for an edge.

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #64


    pfren wrote:

    @ ThrillerFan:

    Your attempt to back up your ignorance with wannabe facts is really moving.

    g3 is perfectly playable in the Slav, either directly, or after Qb3/Qc2/Nbd2. The play frequently transposes to QGA (Mannheim variation) which isn't trivial at all to meet, let alone "no good".

    Factly, some 2700+ players follow these approaches, excluding the interesting, but little tried 4.Nbd2 (there's an article about it by GM Grivas at "Secrets of Opening Surprises"). If you don't know the guy, let me introduce him: He actually is one of the top-ten FIDE trainers currently, and he works a quite lot with GM, opening expert and top trainer Adrian Michalchishin.

    So... you know what? You are wrong, and failure to admit that makes things much worse.

    Uhm, if you play 4.Qc2 or 4.Qb3 first, preventing the loss of the pawn, you are no longer in a pure Catalan, you are in an offbeat line of the Slav, so before you go around calling people wrong, use your brain for once.

    The pure Catalan, 4.g3, against the Slav, is not good at all, and that is the argument I've made, so don't put words in my mouth, saying that I said playing g3 at any point in the entire game is bad, like after 4.Qc2, which is, once again, no longer a Catalan, it's an offbeat line of the Slav.  Black is a move ahead of 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.g3 in consolidating his extra pawn when he plays 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.g3? (?! at best).  Black will be able to take on c4 and follow up with ...b5!

    Go to any Website that talks about this, you'll see the same thing. (Chess Publishing's Forum), for example.

    So... you know what?  You are wrong, and failure to admit that makes things much worse.

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #65


    He actually did say 'either immediately' or after a queen move...

    And the line you posted is bogus. Please try it against me. 4...dxc4 is fine, and a reasonable try, but 5.Bg2 b5 is not good for Black at all.

    Also, you said a 'Catalan set-up.' Last time I checked, the Catalan setup still works with the Queen on c2. 4.g3 against the Slav is still an offbeat line of the Slav. So your whole post is nonsense actually.

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #66


    Expertise87, go thru Tukmakov - Korchnoi, Leningrad Interzonal 1973, and then try to tell me that 5.Bg2 b5 is not good for Black with a straight face!

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #67


    ThrillerFan, I thought your point was that Black wasn't playing e6 that early? That looks like a normal Open Catalan to me, although b5 is very unusual at that point.

    I think White was doing fine in the opening in any event although probably the immediate Ne5 is more critical than castling. Play usually continues (after 7.Ne5) 7...Nd5 (the point - Black can't play 7...Bb7) 8.O-O Bb7 9.e4 Nf6 10.Nc3 and White's position looks pretty pleasant to me. Perhaps Tukmakov's d5 push was ill-advised, and b3 seemed premature as well.

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #68


    Expertise, the point I was making was that the Catalan setup is bad for White if all of the following apply:

    1) Black can take and hold the pawn

    2) Black has not played ...e6 with the Bishop behind the pawn structure

    3) Black has not played ...g6, preventing a Bishop brought out to f5 to be able to retreat to g6 or h7.

    After 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 Nf6, 4.g3 is perfectly fine because line 2 no longer applies

    After 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Qc2 followed by 5.g3, line 1 no longer applies

    After 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6, 3.g3 is fine because after 3...d5, Black doesn't have the ability to bring the Bishop out with a retreat square, so if it comes out to f5, and you attack it, it can't stay on the diagonal with Bg6 or Bh7.

    After 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6, 4.g3 is bad because A) Black can grab the Pawn and hold it, B) Black hasn't played ...e6, allowing the Bishop to come out, and C) Black hasn't played ...g6, giving Black the retreat squares, g6 and h7, if it moves out to f5 and is subsequently attacked.  If any one of the 3 items didn't apply, g3 would be fine.

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #69


    The funny thing about the 4. g3 line against the slav is that Averuk played it himself and in 2012 so after his books. And so have many other GM's.

    It might not be the best line ever against the slav but hey .. at my level and apperently even GM level it does not matter too much.

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #71


    I really dislike Thrillerfan's tone, but Black should be ok after 4...Bf5, shouldn't he?

    As long as Black does NOT take on c4, White can't get those Catalan Accepted types of positions such as in Avrukh-Motylev.

    I wonder what Avrukh had planned against 4...Bf5.

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #72


    Here's an example. I don't know that this is best play by both sides, but Qb6-a6 followed by b6 is an interesting maneuver.

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #73


    SmyslovFan, the tone is reactionary.  I don't always give the type of tone given here, but after pfren's imbecile-like remark early on in the thread, simply saying that I'm wrong, with nothing to back himself up with initially, that's the type of tone that he's going to get back.

    I have nothing against countering what I say as long as you can back it up.  However, dumb comments like "You are wrong" are a real pet peeve of mine.  When I make claims that a person is wrong, even on this site, I at least have some form of legitmate backup comment or analysis or whatever else is appropriate to back up my statement.  There's a right way and a wrong way to counter what somebody says.  pfren has routinely chosen the wrong way with his blunt and nasty comments with nothing to back himself up, or in the case of posts by players that are more around 1000 in rating rather than myself, where my FIDE rating is in the mid-2000s and USCF rating is in the 2040s, and they put up proposals to play lines that to a 2000 player is clearly insane, a 1000 player doesn't know that, and he'll put up sneer comments that are detrimental, not helpful.

    If I told you that the capital of Missouri was Saint Louis (which it's not, by the way), pfren would say something blunt with no backup like "You're Wrong!" or some sneer comment like "No it's not, clearly this person is severely uneducated".  Instead, you should be saying something like "I can't seem to recall right now what the capital of Missouri is, but I don't believe it's Saint Louis", which is far more polite than "You're Wrong!", or in my case, where I do know it, one should say "Saint Louis is not the capital of Missouri, Jefferson City is" WITHOUT tacking on things like "you idiot" onto the end of it!

    So I'm sorry SmyslovFan if you didn't like my tone in this thread, but that's not my nature all around, it's only in cases where you can thank obnoxious imbeciles like pfren who have the social skills of a 4 year old!

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #75


    Thanks, Pfren. That does look more challenging for Black. Jiri Jirka has scored repeatedly with it as white. I'll have to think about a good response.

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #76


    It's the same line I posted last page #44, glad to see pfren had the same idea :) I posted the continuation 8...Qb6 9.Nxg6 hxg6 10.c5

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #77


    Pellik's idea is certainly appealing, and one that perhaps Gata Kamsky would endorse.

    I am looking more at the types of endgames that Kramnik has played against 4.e3, and I think Black is ok in the variation below. I would need more time and some high-level correspondence

    examples to feel more confident about this though.

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