mmmm l|f iiii fMlil 8

Fianchetto System


Bern Zonal 1990

1 g3 c5 2 Ag2 £>c6 3 e4 g6 4 d3 ¿g7 5 <&I3 £if6 6 0-0 0-0 7 c3 d5

When Black pushes with both c7-c5 and d7-d5 the adversaries reverse roles and White is playing a King's Indian Defence with an extra tempo Of course. White should be happy to go along with this, especially as the King's Indian is such a reputable defence Nevertheless, Black often volunteers to allow White this luxury, and the most popular choice is to fianchetto the king's bishop, as in the first three games The other three see Black adopting versions of the Classical Vanation

With this move Black adopts the popular fianchetto system which is used by White against the King's Indian Defence Not surprisingly the extra tempo helps White here, but Black's setup is logical and gives a reasonable game "The more conservative 7 d6 would transpose to the Sicilian Defence 8 £lbd2 e5

Alternatives a) piachetka-Pribyl, Czechoslovakia 1974 saw an attempt to cramp White with 8 d4 After 9 cxd4 Cxd4 10 a4 e5 11 £>c4 White stood better and on 11 £*e8 he used the extra tempo to undertake a queen-side offensive with 12 b4' Such a push can be excellent for White, and the reader should be on the lookout for this active possibility in related positions, particularly when Black has ambitiously advanced his central pawns b) 8 Ag4?> is not a good plan for Black, either Lutikov-Bagirov, Alma-Ata 1969 continued 9 exdS1 &xd5 10 h3 £d7 II £lb3 b6 12 d4», when White's firm control of the centre left him much better

9 Sel

Expansion on the queenside is another plan available to White a) Petrosian-Teschner, Stockholm Interzonal 1962, continued 9 a3, aiming to advance the b-pawn Of course Black can prevent b2-b4 with 9 a5, but White then happily gives back a tempo with 10 a4, leaving Black's queenside weak (particularly the squares b5 and b6) Consequently the game went (after 9 a3) 9 h6 10 b4 cxb4 11 axb4 b5 12 &a3 2e8 13 »c2 ii.g4 14 £ib3, when White had a slight pull on the queenside b) Popovic-Kirov, Wroclaw 1979, continued instead 9 a4 h6 10 a5|,? dxe4 (10 &xa59 11 &xe5) 11 dxe4 Ae6 12«e2 Vc7 13 a6' b6, when White eventually made use of b7 by playing ®c4-d6-b7

Black often makes this precautionary move in order to deny his opponent the use of the g5-square, as a future Acl-g5 or £)f3-g5 could undermine Black's control of d5

The space-gaining 9 d4 transposes to the game Yap-Bany, Hungary 1986 White immediately sought an initiative on the queenside with 10 cxd4 cxd4 11 £ic4 ®e8 12 Wb3 £>d6 13 Ag5 Af6 14 Axf6 lfxf6 15 £ixd6 #xd6 16 Seel Black has problems completing his development, and the passive 16 Sb8 was answered by the thematic 17 WdS1 #f6 18 b4', when 18 £ixb4 19 0xe5 left Black with a weak d-pawn and a passive game 10 a4

An almost automatic reaction in many variations White intends to use c4 as a useful post for his queen's knight, so it is necessary to put a stop to a harassing b7-b5 from Black 10 ... 2e8

Bringing more support to his e-pawn, which is about to come under pressure from White's pieces after the following central exchange U exdS ?Jxd5

Although Black enjoys a space advantage his chances of finding a constructive plan are somewhat limited One policy is to calmly wait and see how White will continue, making sure not to make any structural weaknesses However, White's game is a little easier to play He has a definite, albeit minuscule pull on both sides of the board, and his king's bishop — unlike Black's — resides on an open diagonal

An interesting alternative to 12 Af5, as in Wade-Browne, Hastings 1972/73 Rather than give White a choice of operations Black challenges his opponent's formidable knight, forcing either a retreat or a relieving exchange

White wisely keeps his piece, consequently retaining the tension

Black seeks to effectively neutralise White's conventional grip of c4, but at the cost of granting the first player another outpost

14 Wc2 c4

16 2dl Wc7

17 ftdS Wb8

In return for the relinquishing of c4, which now belongs to a black knight White has command of the d-file and an unchallenged knight on d5 It will also become apparent that White continues to have a mild initiative on both sides of the board, and Hickl now steps up the pace

With his pieces over on the queenside Black realises that White's last move did indeed threaten to shatter his kingside with the sacrifice £ih4xg6 but now the f7-pawn is left undefended, and White cleverly uses a timely queen-side expansion to shift his queen to the a2-g8 diagonal

22 Aa3 ftac4

23 Ab4

Black has renewed his occupation of c4, while White has managed to push his b-pawn menacingly up the


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