7

The same move order also occurred in game 2 (at least up to 9...Qa5). It's a good question that you're asking, though I'm afraid there's no intuitive answer in the way that you're looking for. Instead, these are very concrete lines well polished by computer analysis, which means the best way to understand a decision such as 7.dxc5 is to simply play through ...


6

The position after move 9 is the main tabya of the Tarrasch defense. Your feeling that Black is better, or even that he has egalized, is imprecise : White has no weakness, active pieces, and Black's isolani is a long term target. The position is playable for both sides, its evaluation somewhere in between = and +=. Actually, Kasparov himself stopped playing ...


6

It seems to be that the QGD is regaining some popularity at the top level due to theory advancing. I don't think that says anything about the overall popularity of the two openings though (i.e., including all players). The increase in engines' powers have made playing the semi-slav a very treacherous choice. There's a lot more that super GMs need to know ...


5

There were a select of games published played between AlphaZero and Stockfish 8, see e.g. here on chess24. Some of them were played without book and some with the TCEC opening book, which I reckon led to a bigger likelihood for the QGD to occur. Considering that QGD itself is an opening for black, how frequently they occurred in AlphaZero's games playing ...


5

7...dxc4 is absolutely just as good as 7...Ne4. Stockfish 10 (at depth 32) gives 7...dxc4 an evaluation of -0.31, while 7...Ne4 is 0.23. A difference of 118 games vs 96 games isn't a big deal and has very little weight in determining the objective strength of a move. So this is one of those cases where deciding which move to play is a matter of taste. EDIT -...


5

Welcome to the world of the Isolated Queen Pawn (IQP for shorts)! This is a special type of position which can be reached from quite a few openings (also with reversed colours); the Tarrasch variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined, as in your game, the 2. c3 Sicilian, the Caro Kann, to name a few. Just like playing a violent kingside attack with lots of ...


5

This really comes down to what you're comfortable with. Both the Benoni and the QGD are good options, precisely because of the reason you mention: a3 isn't really useful for White in those openings, so you'll be playing lines with a tempo up. According to chessgames.com, Black is already better. Which line (3... d5 or 3... c5) is better is just a matter of ...


5

White happens to have a couple of nice concrete plans in the particular QGD Exchange variation you mention (1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.cxd5 exd5). One involves e3, f3, Nge2, and a break in the center with e4. The other is a minority attack on Black's a7-b7-c6-d5 pawn structure with b2-b4-b5. You will note that White's stats are much worse in the variation 1....


4

Short answer: In symmetric positions it's difficult to get an advantage if there's nothing concrete. In the Exchange Slav white only has an extra half-move against black's very solid position. Compare with the Exchange French which is even more drawish. In the Exchange variation of Queen's Gambit Declined on the other hand, there is a structural imbalance ...


4

It is hard to tell exactly without an exact line, but normally it has the idea of following with ...dxc4 (putting the enemy bishop on the c4 square), ...b5 (now kicking it away) and ...Bb7. This solves the annoying problem of placing the c8 bishop on a decent square


3

As @JossieCalderon pointed out, any opening could end up with three knights for one side. This would always require a knight promotion of some sort. Usually, knight promotions occur to Give check to the opponent immediately to move the king to another square or to save a tempo. Avoid a knight fork from the opponent, or give one of your own Avoid stalemate ...


3

Indeed, the line is relatively rare, but the move 3....a6 seems to become more and more popular the last couple of years. Even Magnus Carlsen has played it twice in blitz recently, against Aronian and Grischuk. The move 4.cxd5 is the most popular move and arguably the only way to fight for an advantage. After 4.Nf3, black has the choice to transpose to a ...


3

The Marshall is considered dubious since Black essentially just gives up full control over the center. For that reason, there is no move that would give Black absolute equality after 4. Nf3 There are probably good development schemes that would give Black a playable game, but there is no direct path to absolute equality. Heck, there's no direct path to ...


3

The Principle of Two Weaknesses is at work here, one weakness is easier to defend than two. Asymmetry, especially in pawn structure, benefits the player ahead in development, because there is usually available play on more parts of the board. The situation becomes more of a race, and the faster developed player will have an easier way to obtain an advantage....


2

The exchange variation in the classical QGD can be viewed as theoretically favouring white because after the fourth move in your game, white has both his central pawns while black has only one. However, black now has a semi-open central file which he can use to control the centre through his rooks. Also, he has a queen side pawn majority and he can start ...


2

I suspect that a good try for white here is to go into Colle-Zukertort system: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colle_System#Colle.E2.80.93Zukertort_System Then 3...h6 is not only a tempo loss, but also a unpleasant weakness of the king side.


2

A suggestion : Boensch-Vaganian, 1983 Bring the Bishop to d6, move the kingside pawns forward, try to dominate square e4.


2

Your question(s) seem to be related to 1.d4 in general. People have nicely answered issues with the Isolated Q Pawn, so I'll touch on other topics. Compared to 1.e4 , queen's pawn openings do not attempt to take advantage of immediate complications in the center. In Roy Lopez, White is playing against e5 right from the beginning, move after move. King's ...


2

12. a3 in this position is a very concrete move, and as such, the best way to understand its purpose is to play out a handful of the main variations with and without the a3 inclusion. If it's difficult to do that on your own, keep an engine on your side while you're doing your exploratory analysis. Short answer: a3 is not necessarily needed for white here, ...


2

Be careful that you don't end up a tempo down in a known line, otherwise it is good to keep all your options open. h6 can benefit Black in giving luft to a castled king but overall it is a slight weakening of his position, so you should be encouraged to wait for Black to ask the Bishop it's intentions. Overall, unless you have a concrete reason to take the ...


2

It depends on your own tastes, but I'd recommend not taking. Taking after ...h6 is justified because it essentially costs Black a tempo (i.e., playing ...h6). If you take without provocation then no one's losing tempi, you're just making an exchange. If you really like trading on f6 then go ahead, but objectively you shouldn't have any advantage.


2

One of the possible reasons why 5.Bf4 has gained popularity at the very top-level, is because white seems to have difficulties obtaining an advantage after 5.Bg5. The critical variation is 5....h6 6.Bh4 O-O 7.e3 Nbd7 8.Rc1 c5 9.dxc5 Nxc5 10.cxd5 g5!, which occured for the first time in Wojtaszek-Kramnik (2015). Moreover, black can also play 9....dxc4, which ...


1

Indeed, the Exchange QGD and a system against the Queen's Indian do not blend very well. In his famous repertoire series on 1.d4, GM Avrukh opts for the Catalan, using the move orders 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3 d5 4.Nf3 and 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3. For more information, see Volume 1A (published in 2015) and Volume 1B (published in 2016). Instead, the repertoire ...


1

Both moves are played with exd5 being the more popular choice. After 8.Nxd5 exd5 is twice as popular as Qxd5 as played by Nakamura. It is likely Nakamura is trying some ideas in these sidelines in the hopes to catch his opponent unawares.


1

2 main reasons: The orthodox defense typically goes for a ...c6 structure and avoids ...b6 + ...c5. This makes Bxf6 a more viable option for White due to the more closed nature of the game. So, ...h6 could just end up wasting a tempo by nudging White to make a somewhat favourable exchange. Note that it's fine for you to play Bxf6 against the Tartakower too, ...


1

Perhaps not a very well known game, but Bobotsov-Petrosian is definitely highly instructive how to play the Exchange variation of the QGD: First, black exchanges a couple of minor pieces, as he lacks space By putting a knight on d6, black stops white's play on the queen side Then, black starts a king side attack Edit: A similar approach can be found in ...


1

According to chessTempo.com's database for over 2200 rated player games 3...c5 scores best for Black with 43% wins for Black and only 20% wins for White. By-the-way, there is another alternative you didn't mention which is 3...d6


1

The plan you choose should not be too different than against other QGD positions. If you normally play cxd5 and go for a minority attack, it is still valid. Note, in some of those lines Black likes to play a5, which now loses a tempo. If you want to spice it up try 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Qb3 c6 6.e4!? -- see Schlechter vs. Janowski 1902 (1-0) for ideas.


1

In Chess there is a saying " A Weakness is not a weakness unless it is exploited or it can be exploited." Well the move h6 does not look a good move at all because it just deprives the White Black Bishop coming into g5 . It does not develop anything from Black's perspective but it weakens the g6 Square somehow . If White understands this then he can play ...


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