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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variations (Read 8495 times)
Viking
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variat
Reply #15 - 04/18/08 at 12:43:25
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[quote author=nmga link=1205346205/0#14 date=1206149261]6 ...Qe7 might look more natural, but what is your improvement over, say, Luther--Dautov (or Sax--Smyslov)? I looked at these positions quite a bit a year or two ago and concluded White is better, but I'd be delighted to be proved wrong!
[/quote]

I did have a look at this (Luther - Dautov) a while ago. My first impression was that white was better. I was also a bit surprised that some strong players had defended the black side more than once with good results. Now I am not so sure any more...

Actually when I just happened to open and read one of my books  ::) I discovered that SOS#2 has an article by Flear on 3..g6.
There he covers Qe7 7. Bxc6 Qb4+!? in one game.
Looks interesting.
  
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Michael Ayton
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variat
Reply #14 - 03/22/08 at 01:27:41
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6 ...Qe7 might look more natural, but what is your improvement over, say, Luther--Dautov (or Sax--Smyslov)? I looked at these positions quite a bit a year or two ago and concluded White is better, but I'd be delighted to be proved wrong!

I noticed 4 ...Nd4 for the first time the day you mentioned it! Initially I liked it, but on reflection I can't say I'm too keen on this ending. Isn't Black a little cramped?

Returning to the 3 ...a6 4 Ba4 d6 move order, what an interesting state of affairs! A number of GMs suggest [u]5 0-0[/u] renders this uninteresting; meanwhile in some other quarters [u]5 Bc6[/u] is considered the problem; and finally, Khalifman/Anand recommend [u]5 c3[/u]! This disagreement doesn't, of course, imply that the Modern Steinitz is OK, but it does seem to suggest that the defence is controversial and thus deserving of attention! So, I'm still hoping people might like to debate one or two of the lines I've given ...

It's slightly off-topic, but in view of Viking's Cozio move-order suggestion it might be worth mentioning 3 ...Nge7 4 0-0 a6 5 Ba4 g6 6 c3 Bg7 7 d4 ed 8 cd. Now 8 ...b5 9 d5! is meant to be a bit better for white, but 8 ...0-0 is possible, e.g. 9 d5 Na5 or 9 Nc3 d6, delaying or omitting ...b5. Anyone got any thoughts on this?


  
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Viking
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variat
Reply #13 - 03/18/08 at 20:01:42
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[quote author=nmga link=1205346205/0#11 date=1205856226]But although Smyslov and Malaniuk have favoured 3 ...g6 I haven't looked at this recently 'cos the last time I did so I had the feeling that Black doesn't quite equalise in the simplified (and slightly tedious?) positions after 4 d4 ed 5 Bg5. I seem to recall 5 ...Be7 6 Be7 Nge7 7 Nd4 d5 8 Nc3 0-0(!) being given on ChessPublishing as OK for Black (and maybe this is Black's best line?), but also being called into question somewhere or other. But this is the extent of my memory, and maybe someone else can shed more light here?
[/quote]

In your line I think 6..Qxe7 looks more natural...

Khalifman/Anand goes for 5.c3!?


Another old book, with old analysis  :), by Larsen gives (3...g6 4.d4) 4...Nxd4 an "!" 5.Nxd4 exd4 6.Qxd4 Qf6 7.e5 Qb6 when white can either go for the endgame or try something with 8.Qd3 when a6 9.Bc4 Qa5+ and Qxe5 might be playable!?
Khalifman/Anand 's choice was to go for the endgame with 8.Qxb6...
  
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Paddy
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variat
Reply #12 - 03/18/08 at 17:11:07
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[quote author=nmga link=1205346205/0#11 date=1205856226]
Do you think the GM who expressed his doubts about the Modern Steinitz did so on the basis of 5 Bc6? I'd still like to know why this might be so clear a White plus, but then I'd like to debate any of the critical (?) lines I mentioned (in either post)!

[/quote]

My tame GM advised me that the main problem is in what to play against 5 0-0.
  
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Michael Ayton
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variat
Reply #11 - 03/18/08 at 16:03:46
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Good to be reminded of the classic chess literature, Paddy! Reading your post made me dig out my old copy of Koenig's book, which, I see, I bought in London on 12 Feb. 1980!

Do you think the GM who expressed his doubts about the Modern Steinitz did so on the basis of 5 Bc6? I'd still like to know why this might be so clear a White plus, but then I'd like to debate any of the critical (?) lines I mentioned (in either post)!

Move orders are extremely interesting of course. But although Smyslov and Malaniuk have favoured 3 ...g6 I haven't looked at this recently 'cos the last time I did so I had the feeling that Black doesn't quite equalise in the simplified (and slightly tedious?) positions after 4 d4 ed 5 Bg5. I seem to recall 5 ...Be7 6 Be7 Nge7 7 Nd4 d5 8 Nc3 0-0(!) being given on ChessPublishing as OK for Black (and maybe this is Black's best line?), but also being called into question somewhere or other. But this is the extent of my memory, and maybe someone else can shed more light here?

  
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Paddy
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variations
Reply #10 - 03/18/08 at 13:16:57
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[quote author=nmga link=1205346205/0#0 date=1205346205]As a supplement to the recent thread I started on the Modern Fianchetto Variation (C79) of the Steinitz, I’m hoping here to stimulate discussion of two other lines, the Bronstein Variation (C76) and (less critically perhaps) the Rubinstein Variation (C75).

The Bronstein begins (again several different move orders are possible) 5 0-0 Bd7 6 c3 g6 7 d4 Bg7.

[/quote]

I share Michael's interest in the Modern Steinitz (aka Steinitz Defence Deferred), since some of my favourite players played some very good games with it: Rubinstein, Capablanca, Keres, Bronstein ...

Some key games in its early evolution are given in Koenig's fascinating book Chess from Morphy to Botvinnik.

One slightly pedantic point: I'm not sure that the line with 6...g6 should really be named after Bronstein. OK, he played it a fair bit, but so did many others. Incidentally, the first game with it in Koenig's book features the great 19th century English player Blackburne against GM Mackenzie, played in 1877 in a short match following the Bradford tournament! This game is missing from the main databases, so I give it below.

I suggest that much of the modern understanding of this line is due to Smyslov, who generally reached it via 3...g6 (and if 4 c3 a6!) thus enabling him to avoid the Exchange Variation. Smyslov scored about 60% with 3...g6 from more than 40 games. Other frequent adopters of the 3...g6 4 c3 a6 idea were Spassky and Malaniuk.

[Event "Match of three games"]
[Site "Bradford"]
[Date "1877.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Mackenzie, GH."]
[Black "Blackburne, JH."]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "C76"]
[PlyCount "66"]
[EventDate "1877.??.??"]
[EventType "match"]
[EventRounds "3"]
[EventCountry "GBR"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 d6 5. c3 Bd7 6. O-O g6 7. d4 Bg7 8. Be3 Nge7 9. Qd2 O-O 10. Bh6 Bg4 11. Na3 Bxf3 12. gxf3 d5 13. Rad1 exd4 14. Bxg7 Kxg7 15. cxd4 f5 16. e5 f4 17. Kh1 Qc8 18. Bxc6 bxc6 19. Kg2 Nf5 20. Qxf4 Qd8 21. Kh1 Nh4 22. Qg4 h5 23. Qg1 Nxf3 24. Qg3 Qd7 25. Nc2 h4 26. Qg2 Rf4 27. Ne3 h3 28. Qg3 Raf8 29. Rd3 c5 30. Rc1 cxd4 31. e6 Qxe6 32. Rxc7+ R4f7 33. Nf1 Qe2 0-1

  
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Michael Ayton
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variat
Reply #9 - 03/17/08 at 16:28:10
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Interesting stuff. I confess I have never looked at 4 c3 d5, and for now at least I don't see the problem. It's good enough for Arkhipov ...

Also, looking again at the Rubinstein after 0-0, I think it might be better than I had assumed. I'm not sure whether either side can or should improve (e.g. with 14 Rb1!? or 14 ...a5!?) on van der Wiel--Short, but instead of/as well as 12 ...Nh4, 12 ...Nf6 and 12 ...c5, contrary to what I said initially, both look reasonable to me even if they don't set the board alight. I'm always very respectful (though not of course uncritically so) of any line played by Keres! Regarding the ...h6 idea, I did wonder if (paradoxically?) it might be more impressive when White [i]hasn't[/i] closed the centre (e.g. 8 Re1 Be7 9 Nbd2 h6 10 Nf1 Bg5).

I would still like to know, though, why 5 Bc6 against the Steinitz is so serious, if it is ...


  
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variations
Reply #8 - 03/17/08 at 12:18:50
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Thanks for your replies.

I might investigate into Be7!? in the exchange later. So far I try to limit white options with the cozio move order (mainly in order to be more focused myself) As has been pointed out, it is not very flexible though...

However the cozio move order has its points. Bxc6 as mentioned above against the modern steinitz is out of the question. After 3..Ne7 white seams to have three main moves. This is how I plan to handle these now:

after 4.Nc3 I play a6!? (instead of the dangerous typical cozio moveorder g6 5.d4 exd4 5.Nd5! as mentioned else on the forum)5.Ba4 d6 - Black seams to have a nice version of the steinitz

after 4.c3 I play d5!? which is some kind of a Ponziani. I see that Anand met this once and only got a draw. Looks reasonable.

after 4.0-0 I think that the h4!? variations in the rubinstein is not that attactive anymore. Topalov-Jussupow show how dangerous this plan is for white. However the fact that white has castled must be to blacks advantage - and I will continue with typical rubinstein (Ng6 / h6...)

Comments?
  
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Michael Ayton
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variat
Reply #7 - 03/13/08 at 14:22:39
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Good to get all your responses. Yes, the Rubinstein embodies what you might call Kalashnikov-style themes, as described by kylemeister. Thanks for the Jansa reference, MarinFan -- I'll have to take a look at this sometime.

On 5 d4, I tentatively assume 5 ...b5 6 Bb3 Nd4 7 Nd4 ed 8 c3 (8 Bd5 Rb8) Bb7 is OK ...

Re 5 Bc6, I have to bow to Andrew Greet's wisdom. From what I've seen his book is very impressive but as you can tell I haven't bought it yet!  Embarrassed How does he say White can prove advantage? I have to confess I've never looked at 6 ...f6 but just lazily assumed it was OK. But I'd like also to ask what's wrong with Keres's 6 ...ed, e.g 7 Nd4 c5 8 Nf3 Nf6 9 0-0 Be7 10 Nc3 0-0 11 Re1 Bb7 12 Bg5 h6 (12 ...Re8) 13 Bh4 Re8 (14 e5 maybe 14 ...Ng4!?). Is there a line where White can target a6 while denying Black sufficient counterplay? -- hope not but who knows!?

There's also 6 ...Bg4!? of course, as played by Alekhine, Keres and Portisch and commended by Davies on ChessPublishing. Davies cites Ivkov as recommending 7 de de 8 Nbd2!? (8 Qd8 Rd8 9 Nbd2 f6) but thinks Black is OK after 8 ...f6. Personally I'd only really feel secure commenting on this line if I'd given it a practical test. Anyone else got any thoughts?


  
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variations
Reply #6 - 03/13/08 at 10:31:23
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Hello Viking,

The book "Dynamics of Chess Strategy - Vlastimil Jansa" has a good explanation of the h6 idea, based mostly around Keres games, and particularly one against Tal, which put the idea in doubt if my memory is correct.

Bye John S
  
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variations
Reply #5 - 03/13/08 at 10:23:02
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5...Be7 against the Exchange is also in the Dangerous Weapons 1.e4 e5 tome.

It looks a bit fishy to me - the point of the Deferred Exchange (4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 6.Bxc6!?) is to wait until Black has committed the bishop to e7 so why do it voluntarily here?

I suppose the answer is that here Black hasn't also committed to ...Nf6, so Black can reinforce e5 with ...Bf6 (rather than the slightly weakening ...f6) and then deploy his knight optimally to e7 and g6.

Black's bishop 'feels' a bit odd on f6, but it certainly has its points.
  

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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variations
Reply #4 - 03/13/08 at 10:08:48
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Viking
You may like to consider the ...Be7 line versus Exchange. More fun thatn the usual stuff. In the Johnson/johanneson (sp?)Zaitsev  book. Also played by shirov iirc.

May open up some flexibility in your move order.
  
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ANDREW BRETT
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variations
Reply #3 - 03/13/08 at 08:09:39
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Michael,

What are your thoughts on 5 bxc6 since this is the main recommendation in Greet's lopez book.

Am I right to think that 5 d4 just leads to a draw so long as white avoids the Noah's ark
  
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variat
Reply #2 - 03/12/08 at 23:04:22
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...h6 plus ...Be7 and ...Bg5 is an old standard idea in that line (though ...h6 used to be forced by White playing 7. Bb3, which was long considered the main line).

  
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Re: Modern Steinitz, Bronstein & Rubinstein Variations
Reply #1 - 03/12/08 at 21:30:18
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I am amazed by all the transpositions and possibilities....

Have been toying with 1..e5 lately and have been using the cozio moveorder against the ruy (because it avoids the exchange...of course). So far my games often has transposed to steinitz rubinstein similar variations.

You mention that "Black could try ...h6 on moves 7, 9 or 10" in the rubinstein. What is the idea behind "h6"? Is Ng6/f4 and g5 coming?
  
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