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Ivan Sokolov vs Peter Leko
Corus Group A (2006), Wijk aan Zee NED, rd 6, Jan-20
Queen's Indian Defense: Kasparov-Petrosian Variation. Romanishin Attack (E12)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: Leko demonstrates that the Queen's Indian is a good defensive choice against 1. d4. Of course with Leko's careful handling, the opening looks a bit drawish. But with the Black pieces I guess that's OK.
Jan-22-06  aw1988: <patzer2> So you're convinced that the first move is an advantage.
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <aw1988> Statistically, the first move is an advantage. Black can equalize easy enough to drawish positions, but if he's pressing for more he often has to take risks that put the well prepared first player at an advantage.

Jan-22-06  aw1988: If Black can equalize "easily enough", then White's obviously doing a horrible job, isn't he? Wouldn't it be nice to keep getting a small advantage?
Premium Chessgames Member
  patzer2: <aw1988> I don't think the failure of White to gain a big advantage in the opening, necessarily means the White player is doing a "bad job." Opening theory keeps getting better and better, allowing the well prepared Black player to more easily find equalizing lines (especially if Black is content to play for the draw). Unless there exists a perfect set of opening lines that guarantee White a forced advantage, I think equalizing lines will eventually be found in all opening variations.

As I look at super GM games, I suspect this is close to being the case already. Most of the advantages gained in the opening are the result of human error on minor variations or novelties in otherwise equal openings. In a lot of the super GM games, the advantages are not showing up until well into level middle games and endgames.

My thought as a player is that all I want out of an opening is equality, after which the better player will win. However, if my opponent misplays the opening, I don't mind exploiting the advantage.

Jan-22-06  aw1988: <Unless there exists a perfect set of opening lines that guarantee White a forced advantage, I think equalizing lines will eventually be found in all opening variations.>

Exactly. So now it's no longer "Black must equalize", but that they're now on even footing. Not everyone believes this, but..

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