< Earlier Kibitzing · PAGE 1 OF 2 ·
|Jul-07-03|| ||Benjamin Lau: Random Comment:
It's such a logical opening- white threatens to give up the c pawn for black's d pawn. In response, black threatens to give up his own c pawn for white's c pawn. It's all so reasonable. You would think that the Slav should guarantee black near equality. So how come black doesn't win as much as white? Does anyone have any thoughts?
|Jul-07-03|| ||Benjamin Lau: My theory: sometimes, black just takes white's c pawn anyway as if it were the Queen's Gambit Accepted. The only difference is that he/she goes through the Slav first and maybe tries to keept it. Usually this, if attempted, fails and white gains development advantages. If white plays cxd5 and black exchanges c pawn for c pawn, the c file is opened up. Maybe this is it. Maybe white gets to exploit it more than black or earlier than black. |
|Jul-07-03|| ||Sneaky: What's a Slav player like?
Slav players like to develop quickly, especially that "eternal problem bishop" on c8. Slav players play ...dxc4 at just the right moment, with an eye towards keeping the queen away from b3. Slav players like to play ...e5 as just the right moment, to bust up White's proud center. Slav players should be happy to give up the bishop pair when their 'bad' bishop gets traded for a knight. Slav players smile when White plays a4, because they know that the weak b4 square will make a perfect station for their bishop in the opening. Slav players like to inhibit White's e4 by pressuring not only e4 but also the knight on c3. Slav players are not afraid to win games with flashy tactics, right out of the opening. And although it's not necessarily their cup of tea, Slav players are NOT afraid to hang onto an extra queenside pawn, when it's called for.
|Jul-07-03|| ||Benjamin Lau: Sneaky, you sound so forceful and seem to be kind of talking to me. If it's what you thought, I did not mean to insult the Slav. I am just perplexed why it doesn't seem to go the way I think it should. I feel that black should be able to obtain (or at least get really close to) equality and yet it doesn't seem to and I was just expressing the desire to understand why. I like analyzing openings and why some seem to work better than others. I still play the Slav too, just not as much as the Nimzo Indian. Speaking of which, I think almost all the queen pawn openings are related in subtle ways. "Slav players like to inhibit White's e4 by pressuring not only e4 but also the knight on c3." That's something Nimzo Indian players like to do too... :-) |
|Jul-07-03|| ||Sneaky: Ben, no I didn't think you were insulting the Slav, I agree with you, it looks like it "SHOULD" give Black equality. But the problem is that White has that extra move and will attempt to use it to squeeze some kind of an advantage out of the position. Perhaps the mere fact that Slav players often give up the bishop pair could be seen by some a serious drawback. (Ditto for the Nimzo, by the way.)|
That leads me to the next stereotype: Slav players love to play with their knights!
|Jul-07-03|| ||Sneaky: <I am just perplexed why it doesn't seem to go the way I think it should.> Can you be more specific. Let's talk moves. How do you think it 'should' go? |
|Jul-07-03|| ||ksadler: I think he's talking about 3. cxd5 cxd5 (in both giving up their c-pawns)...and I quote <white threatens to give up the c pawn for black's d pawn. In response, black threatens to give up his own c pawn for white's c pawn.> Of course, maybe I'm missing the boat here :) |
|Mar-13-04|| ||Sneaky: Today's 'opening of the day' is one of my favorites, the Winawer Countergambit. Simon Winawer himself never had great success with the opening, but over 100 years later grandmasters like Tal and Shabalov started to employ this gambit at the highest level.|
After 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 e5?! the Opening Explorer says:
Move :: white wins / draws / black wins
4. dxe5 :: 46.4% / 32.1% / 21.4%
4. e3 :: 40% / 32% / 28%
4. cxd5 :: 27.8% / 27.8% / 44.4%
Oddly, I think that the last move 4.cxd5 is probably White's best continuation although it got a bad rap due to the statistics.
4.e3 is what I consider a patzer move, even though it's not bad. I consider 4.e3 it as White's way of saying "I don't want to play into your weird book lines, let me just play timid chess even if I get slightly cramped, and let's get into a reasonable middlegame and play chess."
Also note that the 4.cxd5 variation is something that comes around in the otherwise drawish Slav-exchange: 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.cxd5 cxd5 4.Nc3 e5!?
Some important games with this line:
Krasenkow vs Shabalov, 1991 - Shabalov, one of the lines big proponents in the early 90's, scores an impressive victory that no doubt made some GM's sit up and take notice of this opening's revival.
Kasparov vs P Nikolic, 1992 - Here Kasparov takes the bull by the horns, snatching the pawn, and goes on to win a brilliant game.
Beliavsky vs Gelfand, 1992 - Here Beliavsky reveals the strong 10.a3! move which brought up questions about the soundness of the Max Euwe's old idea of ...Nh6!?
|Mar-13-04|| ||BiLL RobeRTiE: After 4. e3 e4 the position is a French Advance with an extra tempo for White, which is fairly respectable. I don't think 4. cxd5 is a good move - the line 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. cxd5 cxd5 4. Nc3?! e5! is pretty good for Black. This is of course the reason why stronger players usually play 3. Nf3 preventing any ideas with ...e5 before going into the Exchange Slav with 4. cxd5 or playing a normal Slav/Semi-Slav with 4. Nc3. |
|Mar-13-04|| ||Sneaky: <After 4. e3 e4 the position is a French Advance with an extra tempo for White, which is fairly respectable.> Yes, very much so, when I said it was a 'patzer' move I didn't mean it was a bad move--just that weak players are likely to play it out of fear, rather than out of a concrete opening plan.|
<I don't think 4. cxd5 is a good move - the line 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. cxd5 cxd5 4. Nc3?! e5! is pretty good for Black.>
I don't think you can say that 4.Nc3 is a bad move. Kasparov and other monstrously strong players employ the b-knight before the g-knight in positions like that.
<This is of course the reason why stronger players usually play 3. Nf3 preventing any ideas with ...e5> I think the preference toward moving the KN before the QN (and that's all it is, a preference), stems from the fact that systems that involve an early f3 are not very popular these days. When Kasparov used to play 1.d4 nearly exclusively, he would often play into variations like 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 all the time--because in some variations he would be inclined to move the King's knight to e2 instead of f3, the idea being that now he's better placed to try to make a central break with f3 and e4.
In short, I don't think that the early ...e5 is something that white should necessarily strive to avoid; after all, if you play an early Nf3 you might have to cope with the Queen's Indian, and that's something that you might want to avoid as well.
|Mar-13-04|| ||Benjamin Lau: There is a reason you might want to play 3. Nc3- to avoid the dreaded Abrahams/Noteboom Queen's Gambit line. If it weren't for that dangerous line, I think almost everyone would opt for Nf3 instead. I think btw Sneaky that Kasparov alternates between the two choices. |
|Mar-13-04|| ||Slovensko: Interesting that the discussion about whether to play 3.Nc3 and 3.Nf3 in the Slav (Orthodox as well) Queen's Gambit has come up, since I was just polemizing on the same thing...the transpositions are very headache-y. |
|Mar-13-04|| ||Bears092: i used to play Nc3 all the time.
Then I realized that I always end up playing Nf3 and that Nc3 gets in the way sometimes, so I played the king's knight first.
|May-03-04|| ||Dudley: I used to play the Slav because I also played the Caro against 1.e4 but eventually switched to the Nimzo-Bogo. The Slav really doesn't play like the Caro, particularly in the lines where black has to try to hold onto the gambit pawn after dxc4. Black has to absorb a lot of pressure in the center and the K side in hopes of eventually queening a pawn on the Q side. It just isn't my style and I find the lines are to theoretical and weird for my taste. The Nimzo is more playable on the basis of understanding. |
|Jul-15-04|| ||rochade18: <Dudley> I also play the Caro and there's indeed nothing in common with the Slav. White has other possibilities with his centered pawns in the Caro-Kann. |
In my opinion black is never forced to defend the gambit pawn in the Slav, he even needn't capture the c-pawn, like in the 4..a6-line. I will check that out.
|Aug-21-04|| ||Dudley: Well, in the line 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nf3 dxc4 5.e4 b5 - the Geller Gambit, Black must try to hold the pawn or he has no counterplay. The 4...a6 line is relatively new and I wasn't considering it in my comment, but it should have similar themes. |
|Jul-21-05|| ||chess man: I'm going to make the Slav one of my most common defences to 1.d4 mainly because I am comfortable with the positions that frequently arise. I consider it one of black's best defences to d4. So my advice is if your looking for something other than an Indian defence that can have chances for both sides try playing the Slav.|
|Aug-01-05|| ||CaroKannPirate: Honestly, I've been trying to understand the Slav for the longest time now. Can anyone help me to grasp the ideas behind the opening?|
|Aug-01-05|| ||Sneaky: Hi CaroKannPirate, I can try to help. Where to start?|
In typical 1.d4 d5 openings, Black's position is very solid, and he develops safely and soundly, however there is ONE tiny wrinkle in Black's development plan... that awkward queen's bishop.
Efforts to develop this bishop prematurely often get slapped down, e.g. 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 Bf5? 4.Qb3! and now Black is practically down a pawn. And that's not the only line where Qb3 hurts Black for just trying to get his bishop into the game.
That move, Qb3, is often the move which punishes Black for developing his bishop early. So, with that in mind, Black decides that he will "surrender the center" and capture on c4. So now we have 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 dxc4! The idea of this pawn grab is twofold--first, it takes away that otherwise killer move Qb3 from White, just long enough to actually get the queen's bishop into the game. Second, unlike most lines in the Queen's Gambit, Black is actually threatening here to win that gambit pawn for good with ...b5. Because of the threat to keep the pawn, many players opt to play a4, but this move too has its drawbacks, as this makes b4 available for Black's purposes.
One of the greatest compliments about the Slav defense was by Hans Kmoch, in "Pawn Power in Chess", when he wrote, <In the Slav Defense, White has no good pawn breaks, and Black doesn't need any.>
Once ...dxc4 is played, White's positional goal is to work on playing e4 to establish the famous e4/d4 pawn due, but Black doesn't take this lying down, because with a bishop on b4 (attacking the c4 knight) and a knight on f6, Black is effectively attacking e4 three times. Throw in a bishop on the b1-g6 diagonal and Black has e4 pretty well sewn up.
|Aug-01-05|| ||azaris: <Sneaky> I don't think 4...dxc4 is worth an exclam since it's the move that gives White the most iniative out of the opening. You can usually let the pawn go and still get a good game going. Certainly I'd like to face this rather than a Semi-Slav or something.|
Recent GM practice seems to favor not even trying to hold the pawn, and most people seem to have switched to the bizarre 4...a6 (I still haven't found a source that explains the reasoning behind this variation).
|Aug-01-05|| ||Sneaky: First of all let me correct a typo--when I said <with a bishop on b4 (attacking the c4 knight)> of course I meant the c3 knight.|
Now azaris, <I don't think that 4...dxc4 is worth an exclam since it's the move that gives White the most iniative out of the opening> Well I'm not going to argue exclams, but my thinking is that it's a move that looks bad, but in fact entails a very well thought-out opening plan. I play ...e6 in that position these days, another move that "looks bad" but lays the path for a very solid plan of development. I don't think one move is better than the other, but the Semi-Slav I think gives both players more ways to win, so it makes for exciting chess.
<You can usually let the pawn go and still get a good game going. Certainly I'd like to face this rather than a Semi-Slav or something.> Not me, at least not in a tournament. Semi-Slav games are very double edged, and somebody is bound to win, but the Slav is one tough nut to crack when a good player handles the Black pieces. White's advantage is so tiny that it's not easy to get anything working. Of course no plan is foolproof--see Kasparov vs Timman, 1988 for a neat example of how Garry manages gets a nagging advantage out of the opening and converts it into a point.
<Recent GM practice seems to favor not even trying to hold the pawn> Old GM practice favors that as well. Pawn grabbing in the opening is rarely recommended and not for the feint of heart; but unless something is going on that I'm not aware of, White still plays a4 against the Slav, no? That's Black's cue to abandon any idea of clinging to the gambit pawn, but like I said above, Black can then enjoy the hole created on b4.
<and most people seem to have switched to the bizarre 4...a6> Bizarre is a good word for it. I haven't found a very good description of the idea behind that move, but I've seen the games, and the weird way that Black puts a rook on a7 only to free it up with b5.
|Aug-08-05|| ||Knight Pawn: Does anyone know of any good repertoire books for white in the slav? All the books I find are either too basic and idea oriented lacking precise variations, or focus only as a repertoire for black.|
|Aug-08-05|| ||CaroKannPirate: Thanks alot, Sneaky.|
|Sep-09-05|| ||chess man: Here's an enjoyable game. W Hahn vs Tarrasch, 1890|
|Oct-04-05|| ||Averageguy: What does "Slav" mean? Was it a player, or is it named after some country?|
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