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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) C33: Carlsen plays the Mason (Read 11416 times)
Hadron
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #19 - 05/13/14 at 01:47:51
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[quote author=4F4B567978757772757B74681C0 link=1345129641/18#18 date=1399560901]

>White gets practical chances because of the strong pawn centre and possibilities of Nc3-d5 and Nc3-b5, but objectively Black has an edge.  I would be happy to take White's position in casual games but probably wouldn't risk it in an important tournament game or match.<

I would never say that the Mason is good for totally good for White, it just isn't. However I do agree that it does offer reasonable practical chances.
I sort "Das angenommene Koningsgambit mot 3.Sc3" to see what it had largely to say on the subject of 4...Ne7. It had very little which, on the face of it seemed to be very wrong. It sugested:

Leaves White up a certain creek without a paddle.
I tend to feel that 4...Ne7 can not be under estimated and needs to be patched before the Mason is even quater way workable as an opening.
Hadron.
  

I'm reminded again of something Short wrote recently, approximately "The biggest fallacy in chess is the quasi-religious belief in the primacy of the opening."
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #18 - 05/08/14 at 15:55:01
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I have had a quick look at the line and suggest 5.d4 g5 6.Qd3 Bg7, whereupon White probably has nothing better than 7.Nf3 (7.Nb5 Na6) and after 7...Qh6 the computer's preference is 8.Kd1, rather than 8.Kf2 g4. and then if 8...g4 (there are alternatives for Black such as 8...0-0 and 8...Nbc6) 9.Ng1.

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I think 5.d4 followed by 6.Qd3 has a similar assessment to the standard 5.Nf3 lines- White gets practical chances because of the strong pawn centre and possibilities of Nc3-d5 and Nc3-b5, but objectively Black has an edge.  I would be happy to take White's position in casual games but probably wouldn't risk it in an important tournament game or match.

My impression was that 4...Ne7 is designed primarily to guard against the threat of Nc3-d5 which can often be an important part of White's compensation in other lines.

Incidentally John Shaw in his King's Gambit book recommended the 4...Qe7 line instead.
  
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Hadron
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #17 - 04/29/14 at 00:18:33
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Having found and purchased a copy of "Das angenommene Konigsgambit mit 3.Sc3" for a reasonable price (given how rare it is) I have been looking at the Mason again.
My first question on the position after 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nc3 Qh4+ 4.Ke2 Ne7 would be can you leave out playing Nf3 for the time being? What I am trying to get at is what is 4...Ne7 designed for? It takes some of the sting out by defending against  Whites Nd5 while allowing for the counter punch of g7-g5-g4 if there is a knight on f3. So why place a knight on f3? Can not 5.d4 be played first and if now 5...g5 then the Queen move of d1-d3 as suggested above.
Just a thought?
Hadron
  

I'm reminded again of something Short wrote recently, approximately "The biggest fallacy in chess is the quasi-religious belief in the primacy of the opening."
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Stefan Buecker
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #16 - 08/21/12 at 09:50:00
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There is enough work for humans left, Hadron, don't worry. The following line is just a proposal: 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nc3 Qh4+ 4.Ke2 Ne7 5.Nf3 Qh5 6.d4 g5 7.Qd3 g4 8.Ng1 Bh6 9.Kd1 b6 10.Qb5 c5 11.Nge2 g3 12.Qd3 d6 13.Nb5 0-0 14.Nc7 Nbc6 15.Nxa8. Or perhaps 15.Ke1. 15...Qxh2 16.Nxg3 Bg4+ 17.Ke1 fxg3 18.Rxh2 gxh2 19.Bxh6 Rxa8 20.Qg3 h1Q 21.Qxg4+ Ng6.

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Possible continuations are 22.Bg5, 22.Bd2 or 22.Qh3. In most lines White is one pawn behind, so he must be inventive to make the most of his bishop pair. For example 22.Bg5 Nxd4 23.Kd2. Or maybe 23.Rd1!?. 23...Qh2 24.Be3 Kf8 25.c3 Ne5 26.Qd1 Ne6 27.Kc2 Rd8 28.Qd5 Kg7 29.Rd1. Black is slightly better, but not much.
  
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Jonathan Tait
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #15 - 08/21/12 at 08:46:25
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PANFR wrote on 08/19/12 at 13:16:31:
Jonathan Tait wrote on 08/18/12 at 19:02:18:
But equally someone like Carlsen doesn't play 4 Ke2 in the opening unless he has an idea what to do next.


Very true. Next, he plays strongly, without having to care about theory. That is his big idea.


Playing the Mason isn't at all like playing a non-theoretical line. After 1 a4, for example, all White has done is relinquish any theoretical advantage, and he can then outplay his opponent from an equal position. After 4 Ke2, on the other hand, White has the possibility of being very much worse, which "playing strongly" isn't going to remedy. While it's possible that he was just bluffing (it was a blitz game after all), I think it's unlikely that he had no ideas at all. In which case, I just wonder what they were.
  

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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #14 - 08/21/12 at 01:56:44
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Stefan Buecker wrote on 08/20/12 at 16:38:02:
SWJediknight wrote on 08/19/12 at 11:55:40:
I would certainly like to see the Mason Gambit revived as the resulting positions are fascinating, but I retain my doubts.  I don't think 7.Qd3 changes the overall assessment of the line as I don't see anything convincing for White after 7...g4, meeting 8.Ne5 or 8.Ne1 with 8...Bh6, and the piece sac 8.Bxf4 gxf3+ 9.Kf2 doesn't quite work.

Difficult to say which square for the knight is best after 7...g4. Probably the pair of moves Kd1 and Bh6 will be played anyway, so I decided to check the position after 8.Kd1!! Bh6 instead. Now the computer was able to get a little deeper. In depth 22 Rybka gives 9. Ng1! as best, -0.20. 

SWJediknight wrote on 08/19/12 at 11:55:40:
My (old) version of Rybka suggests (7.Kf2 d6) 8.Bb5+ c6 9.Be2 (the idea being to weaken the d6-pawn), and envisaging the piece sacrifice 9...g4 10.Bxf4 gxf3 11.Bxf3, when White gets a large share of the initiative.  Instead it may be better to just reinforce f4 with 9...Ng6, e.g. 10.e5 d5 11.Bd2 g4 12.Ne1 Bh6 or 10.Ne5 Qh6, and Black probably stands better in both cases.

Very interesting, but isn't 8.Be2 g4 9.Bxf4 stronger? The extra move c7-c6 isn't necessarily a weakness.

I really weep for the state of this great game at times. Reducing the legacy of six centuries of play, discovery and re-discovery down to position crunching opinions of some digital demon....I read somewhere else on this forum a post that Chess was at risk of having all the fun being rendered out of the game, I am begining to think the poster might be right.
Cry
  

I'm reminded again of something Short wrote recently, approximately "The biggest fallacy in chess is the quasi-religious belief in the primacy of the opening."
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Stefan Buecker
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #13 - 08/20/12 at 16:38:02
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SWJediknight wrote on 08/19/12 at 11:55:40:
I would certainly like to see the Mason Gambit revived as the resulting positions are fascinating, but I retain my doubts.  I don't think 7.Qd3 changes the overall assessment of the line as I don't see anything convincing for White after 7...g4, meeting 8.Ne5 or 8.Ne1 with 8...Bh6, and the piece sac 8.Bxf4 gxf3+ 9.Kf2 doesn't quite work.

Difficult to say which square for the knight is best after 7...g4. Probably the pair of moves Kd1 and Bh6 will be played anyway, so I decided to check the position after 8.Kd1!! Bh6 instead. Now the computer was able to get a little deeper. In depth 22 Rybka gives 9. Ng1! as best, -0.20. 

SWJediknight wrote on 08/19/12 at 11:55:40:
My (old) version of Rybka suggests (7.Kf2 d6) 8.Bb5+ c6 9.Be2 (the idea being to weaken the d6-pawn), and envisaging the piece sacrifice 9...g4 10.Bxf4 gxf3 11.Bxf3, when White gets a large share of the initiative.  Instead it may be better to just reinforce f4 with 9...Ng6, e.g. 10.e5 d5 11.Bd2 g4 12.Ne1 Bh6 or 10.Ne5 Qh6, and Black probably stands better in both cases.

Very interesting, but isn't 8.Be2 g4 9.Bxf4 stronger? The extra move c7-c6 isn't necessarily a weakness.
  
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #12 - 08/19/12 at 23:19:56
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PANFR wrote on 08/19/12 at 13:16:31:
Jonathan Tait wrote on 08/18/12 at 19:02:18:
But equally someone like Carlsen doesn't play 4 Ke2 in the opening unless he has an idea what to do next.


Very true. Next, he plays strongly, without having to care about theory. That is his big idea.

Any sort of a refutation (or theoretical evaluation) of a chess opening is only as good as your next opponent and whether or not he knows it and can apply it correctly.  Doesn’t mean though, one doesn’t exist…
  

I'm reminded again of something Short wrote recently, approximately "The biggest fallacy in chess is the quasi-religious belief in the primacy of the opening."
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #11 - 08/19/12 at 13:16:31
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Jonathan Tait wrote on 08/18/12 at 19:02:18:
But equally someone like Carlsen doesn't play 4 Ke2 in the opening unless he has an idea what to do next.


Very true. Next, he plays strongly, without having to care about theory. That is his big idea.
  
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #10 - 08/19/12 at 11:55:40
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I would certainly like to see the Mason Gambit revived as the resulting positions are fascinating, but I retain my doubts.  I don't think 7.Qd3 changes the overall assessment of the line as I don't see anything convincing for White after 7...g4, meeting 8.Ne5 or 8.Ne1 with 8...Bh6, and the piece sac 8.Bxf4 gxf3+ 9.Kf2 doesn't quite work.
My (old) version of Rybka suggests (7.Kf2 d6) 8.Bb5+ c6 9.Be2 (the idea being to weaken the d6-pawn), and envisaging the piece sacrifice 9...g4 10.Bxf4 gxf3 11.Bxf3, when White gets a large share of the initiative.  Instead it may be better to just reinforce f4 with 9...Ng6, e.g. 10.e5 d5 11.Bd2 g4 12.Ne1 Bh6 or 10.Ne5 Qh6, and Black probably stands better in both cases.

Despite the shaky theoretical assessment, in answer to the question in the other thread ("is the Mason Gambit playable?"), for blitz and sub-2400 OTB play the answer may well be yes, as the resulting positions are certainly messy and offer White fair practical chances.  I actually tried it out for a bit of fun in a casual game a few months ago (and like Carlsen's, my opponent didn't respond with ...Qh4+).  For correspondence and slow master-level play though it's probably too risky.
  
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #9 - 08/19/12 at 10:17:28
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What is wrong with White's position after, say, 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nc3 Qh4+ 4.Ke2 Ne7 5.Nf3 Qh5 6.d4 g5 7.Qd3? It looks like a normal KG position. White has the center and develops quickly, Kd1 and so on. Black has to make all the difficult decisions and find the precise moves. White has many options, like g4 or e5 or Nb5 or Qb5(+). We shouldn't overestimate Carlsen, I doubt that he had 4...Ne7 on his analytical board. But he knows how important it is to have an active, naturally flowing set-up in a blitz game. For the same reason, that you don't want to defend in a blitz game, the opponent avoids Qh4+.
  
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #8 - 08/19/12 at 00:02:08
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True about Carlsen trying out 1.a4- according to Chess Monthly it was related to a comment of Radjabov saying that "everyone is tired- you may as well start with 1.a4 and you can still beat them".  So he did, and did...

As for the merits of 3.Nc3, I was a regular contributor to that other thread, and I'm afraid I don't think it will be making a comeback at high levels (except at blitz where you can get away with dubious trappy lines).  Maybe Carlsen's opponent might have had a fingerslip and forgot to throw in ...Qh4+ before ...Ne7, or "pre-moved" on the assumption that he'd play Nf3 or Bc4- it was a blitz game after all!
  
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #7 - 08/18/12 at 20:03:56
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Smyslov_Fan wrote on 08/18/12 at 19:31:40:
  Having said that, Ivanchuk-Yusupov, 1991 (game 9) was a rapid game and is considered one of the  100 best games ever played by Burgess, Nunn, and Emms in 1998.

2 remarks on that.
1) if magazines restrict themselves to the interesting and useful positions, I can to some extend agree. However today we see lots of mediocre rapid and blitzgames analyzed which I personally find just wasting space.
2) I don't believe you will see positional masterpieces with plenty of small subtleties in a rapid or blitzgame and certainly no well played complicated endgames. The best games you will see in faster timelimits are tactical slugfests (as the one you indicate) in which the players are mainly relying on their intuition. Although some people say chess is 99% tactics, I prefer to look at the remaining 1%.
  
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #6 - 08/18/12 at 19:47:41
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I just realised my last comment was off-topic. I'll split off that topic and put it in the general chess section if there are any replies to it.
  
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #5 - 08/18/12 at 19:31:40
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brabo wrote on 08/18/12 at 15:00:00:
You see in magazines more and more rapid and even blitzgames taken serious and analyzed. I find this a sad evolution as I don't see what value this brings.

....

For me, I never cared what the time control on a game I analysed was as long as the positions were interesting. I have even looked at a few bullet games to see what ideas pop up there.

Sure, there are plenty of theoretically irrelevant games played, more so at fast time controls than at slow ones. Sure, there are far more tactical errors in fast time controls. But as long as the positions are useful and interesting, I have no problem at all seriously analyzing them regardless of the time control. I'm not suggesting these games go down as the greatest games ever or anything.  Having said that, Ivanchuk-Yusupov, 1991 (game 9) was a rapid game and is considered one of the  100 best games ever played by Burgess, Nunn, and Emms in 1998.

Chess Informant selected this game as the best of its first 64 vloumes!

Here it is, without annotations.



  
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #4 - 08/18/12 at 19:02:18
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brabo wrote on 08/18/12 at 15:00:00:
Neither do i think that Carlsen cared about the real theoretical value of the Mason when he chose the opening. Carlsen knows from himself that even in a lost opening, he still can fight back in a blitzgame against a human opponent.


But equally someone like Carlsen doesn't play 4 Ke2 in the opening unless he has an idea what to do next.
  

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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #3 - 08/18/12 at 15:00:00
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You see in magazines more and more rapid and even blitzgames taken serious and analyzed. I find this a sad evolution as I don't see what value this brings.

Carlsen played 1.a4 against Radjabov in the final blitzworldchampionship. I don't think he has thought for one second on the real theoretical value of 1.a4. Neither do i think that Carlsen cared about the real theoretical value of the Mason when he chose the opening. Carlsen knows from himself that even in a lost opening, he still can fight back in a blitzgame against a human opponent.

Besides I doubt many (top)grandmasters follow chesspubforum and are aware about what we amateurs are here discussing.
  
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #2 - 08/18/12 at 01:01:11
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SWJediknight wrote on 08/17/12 at 20:39:56:
My knowledge of the current theory is that after 3...Qh4+ 4.Ke2, the old main line 4...d5 is fine for White, but 4...Qe7 is tricky and 4...Ne7, taking the sting out of Nd5 ideas, is probably best of all.  I remember agreeing with Brabo in a previous debate that 4...Ne7 gave Black an edge, so it would've been interesting to see what Carlsen's idea was against it. 

Interesting at any rate to see a top GM play the Mason, even though it was in a blitz game!

An edge? The Mason is a corspe after 3...Qh4+ 4.Ke2 Ne7. No more and no less. Try http://www.chesspub.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1208413606/0
Hadron
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I'm reminded again of something Short wrote recently, approximately "The biggest fallacy in chess is the quasi-religious belief in the primacy of the opening."
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Re: C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
Reply #1 - 08/17/12 at 20:39:56
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My knowledge of the current theory is that after 3...Qh4+ 4.Ke2, the old main line 4...d5 is fine for White, but 4...Qe7 is tricky and 4...Ne7, taking the sting out of Nd5 ideas, is probably best of all.  I remember agreeing with Brabo in a previous debate that 4...Ne7 gave Black an edge, so it would've been interesting to see what Carlsen's idea was against it. 

Interesting at any rate to see a top GM play the Mason, even though it was in a blitz game!
  
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C33: Carlsen plays the Mason
08/16/12 at 16:07:21
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Damn. I'd really have liked to see what Carlsen was intending after 3...Qh4+. If only Jumabayev hadn't chickened out...
  

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