Games, analysis and discussion

Sicilian Sveshnikov Variation

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[Event "??"]
[Site "correspondence"]
[Date "1988.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Rinaldi"]
[Black "Veress"]
[Result "0-1"]

{Discussion of Sveshnikov Sicilian, Original Knight Sacrifice Variation game:} 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e5 6.Ndb5 d6 7.Bg5 a6 8.Na3 b5 9.Bxf6 gxf6 10.Nd5 f5 {Nowadays regarded as best.} 11.Nxb5 {An old favourite of mine that may have seen its best days. One way to reach what I'd call the Modern Knight Sacrifice Variation (which can also be reached via 10...Bg7, if that's revived someday) is 11.c3 Bg7 12.Bd3 Be6 13.Nxb5!?, and if Black accepts with 13...axb5 14.Bxb5 Bd7 then his B is committed to d7 instead of being able to go to b7.} axb5 12.Bxb5 Bb7! {This is the bane of what I'd call the Original Knight Sacrifice. If only Black would play 12...Bd7!?, as was common in the old days, then both sides would have lots of interesting options after 13.exf5, in comparison to the modern version of the knight sac, which need not be transposed to from here.} 13.exf5 Rc8 {Perhaps the most critical line in my view. Cox pretty much claims it refutes the Original Knight Sac, but there may be some hope for White - edit: the Original Knight Sacrifice seems more hopeful to me for White nowadays, at least if he doesn't mind certain cases that can be fairly balanced. Another so-called refutation starts with 13...Ra5 14.Qd3 Bg7 when some theory has accumulated around 15.Qc4?!, but simply 15.f6! as spotted by my machine is good for White after 15...Bxf6 16.Qc4 Rxb5 (or 16...Kf8 17.Bxc6 Rc5 18.Qxc5 dxc5 19.Bxb7) 17.Qxb5; also, 13...Bg7 14.f6 Bxf6 15.Qf3 Be7 is given in The Easiest Sicilian, when after their 16.Nb4 Rc8 17.Nxc6 Qb6 instead of 18.Na7+ Qxb5 etc., which is given as good for Black, White could try 18.Nxe7+!? - edit: Chess Assistant16 slightly prefers 15...Kf8 16.Bxc6 Bxc6 17.Qxf6 Qxf6 18.Nxf6 Ke7 19.Ng4 Bxg2 20.Rg1 Be4 21.Ne3 Rhc8 rating the position a tiny bit better for White, but my engine calls it about dead equal; edit: Finally, if 13...Qh4!? 14.0-0! Kd8!? then 15.Bxc6! Bxc6 16.f4 could be about equal, I'd say, e.g. after 16...Rg8 17.c4 Qg4 18.Qd2; if 13...Bh6 perhaps a way for White to try for a win somewhat soundly is 14.0-0 and if 14...Kf8 15.Bxc6 Bxc6 16.c4.} 14.c3 {14.0-0 Bg7 15.Qf3 Bf6 intending ...Ne7 with advantage (perhaps after ...Kf8, I'd guess) is given by Cox. Aside from 16.c4, intending 16...Kf8 17.Bxc6, White could instead try 15.c3, and if 0-0 16.Qg4, but I'm not sure I'd trust these ideas, especially if White hopes for more than equality, even with accurate play on his part. edit: Chess Assistant16 gives 16.a4 [or 16.Rfd1] as about equal, intending to meet 16...Kf8 with 17.Bxc6, but rates 16.c3 first as rather worse for White.} Bg7 15.Qf3 Bf6 16.Nb4 Qb6 17.a4 0-0 18.Nd5 Qd8 19.0-0 {19.a5 Kh8 20.a6 Ba8 21.Bxc6 Rxc6 would help Black.} Kh8 20.Qe3 {20.Bxc6 is a bit murky and more hopeful.} 20...Rg8 21.f3 {21.Qb6 would be better, and may be about equal if White is fortunate.} Bg5 {Black is clearly getting on top now.} 22.Qf2 Ne7 23.Nxe7 Qxe7 24.Rfe1 Bh4 25.g3 Rg5 26.Re3 Rcg8 27.f4 Rxf5 28.Qe2 Rxf4 {White resigns. Notes by Kevin Pacey.} 0-1

Updated 12-20-2020 at 01:49 AM by Kevin Pacey

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