Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A Dutch gambit part 2

Do you know what a topplayer like Kramnik does on a restday just before he will play the first game of the worldcupfinal? Fishing see e.g.chessvibes ! Despite it is a very popular sport in Russia (my Russian father in law is also an ardent practicer), a lot of people were surprised that a professional like Kramnik wasn't busy the whole day with preparing the game. This however doesn't mean that Kramnik didn't care much about the result but rather that he believed resting was more important than plugging for hours on the computer. This is possible on the condition that the preparationwork was made earlier so maximal some refreshing of the memory had to be done. So preparing a game for Kramnik doesn't mean memorizing intensively green moves as I described in my previous blogarticle but rather a relax reviewing of some notes and mainly resting.

Easier said than done but how could Kramnik know in advance that Dmitry Andreikin would be his opponent in the final? Well for sure he didn't know in advance which automatically means that he studied all possible openings in his repertoire prior. Strong players make sure that they have a profound knowledge of all possible systems against their repertoire. A similar sound can be heard on chessmasterschool where grandmaster Andrei Istratescu (same person from my artcile  met een kanon op een mug schieten) states that a lot of players reach a limit because they don't do sufficient efforts to complete their repertoire. Important hereby is to note that the word ' complete' is stated in capital letters. A limited study of the theory causes weaknesses and a chain is only that strong of its weakest link. Besides reinventing the wheel is senseless and very timeconsuming.

From the intro we can deduct that preparing a game based on green moves is certainly not a professional approach. The usage of green moves could be compared with reading a bookreview instead of the book itself. We all know that reading the book is much better but sometimes we don't have or don't want to free the time. A similar remark was made by Kara in the comments of my blogarticle van patzer naar gm intro en calculation. Stefan Docx's remark was also witty when he heard in the bookstand that I was searching for green moves. The remark must have been something like "In the Dutch there are many green moves." 

There is of course a double meaning in this remark. My preparationmethod (based on green moves) as my stubbornness to stick to my rather dubious Dutch defense (with a lot of green moves for white) is considered amateurish. He has right of course but today I can not or do not want to spent time in a more professional approach. I have a full time job and a young family which I give priority. So I just do what I please with my stopgaps like green moves or playing somewhat dubious openings like the Dutch. 

If you play 20 years a somewhat dubious opening like the Dutch then there is the big advantage that you've encountered somewhat every possible system already. Moreover contrary to e.g. Najdorf or Gruenfeld, the Dutch is much less subject to theoretical novelties. Geert Van der Stricht told me after Open Gent that in 2000 he was completely up to date with the Najdorf but in recent years theory has changed so fast that it also became for him an impossible task to know all possible variations. In other words each disadvantage has an advantage. In the continuation of this article, I will extricate a recent example in which like in my former blogarticle een hollands gambietje I will use my years experience of the Dutch to get a quick advantage in the opening. I chose as title "A Dutch gambit part 2" as we will discuss a gambit with a strong relationship with the gambit of part 1.

The oldest game in my personal database against the h3 system of the Dutch dates from 1998. My very brief knowledge of this system was at that time based on the book Dutch Defense from Larry Christiansen and Jeremy Silman published in 1989. In the book was mentioned that accepting the sacrifice was dangerous for black and safer was d5.

From above game I learned not to wait with c5 as that defines my counterplay. Only in 2003 there was a followup . A French expert of this system challenged me with a refined move-order but I found a good anti-dote and overtook the initiative later. If I remember well then this game was published in the perished magazine Vlaanderen Schaakt.

Despite that I made a good result with d5, I started later to doubt if the opening was well played. In the book Win with the stonewall Dutch published in 2009, was stated that the plan with Bf4 was very efficient in this sort of stonewallpositions which explains why I tried something very different in the next game. The game became extremely sharp with naturally a number of mistakes.

The most important lesson which I learned, was that black better chooses for d5 once white has played g4. In a recent game of Open Gent I was able to show my acquired knowledge. I answered g4 immediately with d5 and I didn't wait with c5 but played the move from the moment it became playable. 

This was obviously not a perfect game but it does show why it can be advantage on my chesslevel to play the same opening for many years on the condition that you stay alert and are willing to learn from each game.

Brabo

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