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Normal Topic 8.b4!? in Morra Gambit (Read 7783 times)
Dragonslayer
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Re: 8.b4!? in Morra Gambit
Reply #7 - 07/26/06 at 18:29:27
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MNb wrote on 07/25/06 at 04:19:09:
My sample of Palkovi's book is in English - but it still has gaps.
Thanks for the link, I had lost it. Your articles on the Morra Gambit are a must for everyone, who wants to delve in this opening. Pity, that there already are so many books on this opening, else I would ask you to write one.


Thx MNb Smiley
I have long since come to the conclusion that I have to write the books on the openings I play myself. Publishing them is another matter...
  
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MNb
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Re: 8.b4!? in Morra Gambit
Reply #6 - 07/25/06 at 04:19:09
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My sample of Palkovi's book is in English - but it still has gaps.
Thanks for the link, I had lost it. Your articles on the Morra Gambit are a must for everyone, who wants to delve in this opening. Pity, that there already are so many books on this opening, else I would ask you to write one.
  

The book had the effect good books usually have: it made the stupids more stupid, the intelligent more intelligent and the other thousands of readers remained unchanged.
GC Lichtenberg
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Dragonslayer
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Re: 8.b4!? in Morra Gambit
Reply #5 - 07/24/06 at 17:34:08
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dsanchez wrote on 07/21/06 at 03:44:59:
IM Palliser - I don't have Burgess's book, and I have not seen it at the book store.  As best I can tell, it is about the best reference on this opening.  (I suppose it's available online somewhere).  Janos Flesch's book does not mention 8...b4.  John Knudsen (?) used to maintain a website dedicated to correspondence chess, and there was a very good series of articles on the Smith-Morra.  Unfortunately, I don't think the website is available any longer


But it is!
You can find the archive with all articles here:

http://ccn.correspondencechess.com/content2.htm

Regards

Michael Agermose Jensen, author of the Smith-Morra articles.

P.S. Burgess' book contains a very good introduction to the gambit, but the material is dated. Palkövis german language book is newer but also has its gaps.
  
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dsanchez
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Re: 8.b4!? in Morra Gambit
Reply #4 - 07/21/06 at 03:44:59
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MNb,

Thanks for Palkovi's analysis.  I had not given 8...b5 much consideration, preferring 8...e6 on instinct more than anything else. 8...b5 looks good. It does introduce an a4 lever possiblitiy for White, but I am not strong enough to say if it is any good.  (That's the problem with Kmoch's book -- he teaches you how to see the levers, but not so much how to determine if they are any good!)  I kind of doubt it -- White's chances usually lie in the center in this opening.

I think it is pretty clear, though, that Black would be taking unnecessary risks if he takes the b4 pawn.

BTW, I don't disagree that ...a6 is almost always a useful move for Black, or that 6...a6 is a good defense.  (I think 6...a6 was first popularized in Smith - Evans, San Antonio, 1972 ???  A terrific model game, in any event.)  But in my experience, ...e6 comes early and often as soon as White plays Bc4.  I have 182 games (ICC and OTB) as white with the position after 1.e4 c5 2.d4 cd 3.c3 dc 4.Nxc3 Nc6 5.Nf3, but only 8 with the position after 5...d6 6.Bc4 a6 or 5...a6 6.Bc4 d6 (and 4 of those against the same opponent).

Just a practical observation. 

Personally I think 6...a6 is probably as good as anything else -- I just question whether it's the main line.

IM Palliser - I don't have Burgess's book, and I have not seen it at the book store.  As best I can tell, it is about the best reference on this opening.  (I suppose it's available online somewhere).  Janos Flesch's book does not mention 8...b4.  John Knudsen (?) used to maintain a website dedicated to correspondence chess, and there was a very good series of articles on the Smith-Morra.  Unfortunately, I don't think the website is available any longer

Oops, breaking news:  I also have Ken Smith's 1972 monograph.  I may be mistaken about the Smith - Evans game because it is not mentioned in this monograph.  (However, Smith was always reticent to quote his own games.)  Smith does not mention the possibility of 8...b4.

After 6...a6, Smith writes: "Black is a sharp player and has studied his MCO 10th Edition where this orer of moves is recommended ... Black is simply holding back his KP hoping for a mistake in White's order of moves for now 7.Qe2 is a mistake because of 7...Nf6 8.0-0 Bg4!"

BTW, Ken Smith is still remembered fondly here in Dallas, and was by all accounts an interesting an entertaining fellow.  I never had the pleasure of meeting him -- he was in somewhat ill health and had distanced himself from competitive chess by the time I started playing.  He had also gravitated toward poker by then -- true to his gambiteer's personality.

FWIW,  I do think White *almost* gets enough compensation for the pawn.  It is probably the only opening I look forward to playing with either color!
  
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Re: 8.b4!? in Morra Gambit
Reply #3 - 07/20/06 at 08:44:14
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I think 8 b4 Bg4 is also reasonable: see the game H.Hughes-Wells, Isle of Man 2005.
Didn't Burgess give 8 b4 some coverage in his book?
  
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MNb
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Re: 8.b4!? in Morra Gambit
Reply #2 - 07/20/06 at 02:22:28
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Actually 6...a6 is one of the best defences against the Morra Gambit. The idea is of course to prepare 7...Nf6 and evt. 8...Bg4.
Palkovi thinks 6...a6 7.o-o Nf6 8.b4 dubious: b5! (Nxb4? 9.e5 d5 10.Qa4+ Nc6 11.Rd1) 9.Bd5 Bd7 10.Be3 e6 11.Bxc6 Bxc6 12.Nd4 Bb7 (Bd7 13.f4 Qb8 also looks playable to me) 13.Qe3 Be7 =+.
The move 8...b5 is far more useful to Black than 8.b4 is to White, so White almost loses a tempo.
  

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dsanchez
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Re: 8.b4!? in Morra Gambit
Reply #1 - 07/19/06 at 14:33:22
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I am not familiar with this double gambit.  I looks like 8.b4 Nxb4 9.e5 is an interesting attempt to open the position with a lead in development

But there may be a couple of problems with this. 

For one, I don't think this is the main line move order for Black.  I think Black usually includes an early ...e6, especially after Bc4.  If Black does play ...e6, then this is going to cut down on a lot of your tactical chances involving Bf7+, Qb3, and even Nd5.

Another problem is Black is in no way obligated to snatch antoher pawn.  If I'm Black, I might be happy to just ignore the b-pawn and finish developing along normal lines.  If White also continues along normal lines, then we eventually reach a pretty standard position (I think the advance of White's queenside pawns is not uncommon, although I'm not sure it every really achieves much against solid play).  And by "standard position" I mean White is a pawn down with some slight, but not especially troubling, compensation.

If White presses the issue with say 8.b4 e6 9.b5, then you might be getting into some unknown territory which might  be fun to play.  But I think after, for instance,  9...ab 10.Bxb5 Black is still a pawn ahead, it doesn't look like he's going to have much problem consolidating.  I'm not sure Black's isolated b-pawn is weaker than White's a-pawn.  My guess is Black is at least clearly better, perhaps winning.

But that's just a guess. Thanks for the line.
  
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peon4rey
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8.b4!? in Morra Gambit
07/19/06 at 05:53:31
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What do you think about 8.b4 gambit? Which are the min lines? Is it good or playable for white?
1.e4 c5 2.d4 cxd4 3.c3 dxc3 4.Nxc3 Nc6 5.Nf3 d6 6.Bc4 a6 7.0-0 Nf6 8.b4!?
Thanks
Bye
  
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