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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) Catalan suited below 2000? (Read 27360 times)
ErictheRed
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #48 - 01/08/14 at 19:16:17
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kylemeister wrote on 01/08/14 at 17:13:12:
I find the position after 13. d5 in Giri-Morozevich in the first edition of ECO (1978), where it was given as leading to a slight advantage for White.

The line with 7. Qc2 and Bg5xf6 makes me think "1986" ...


I'm always surprised at how little "new" theory there is, or more accurately at how often old theoretical verdicts are unchanged by new games. 

Sorry for the off-topic/tangent, I was just trying to point out that there is a lot of scope for original play even now that a few popular books have been written on the Catalan.
  
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kylemeister
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #47 - 01/08/14 at 17:13:12
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I find the position after 13. d5 in Giri-Morozevich in the first edition of ECO (1978), where it was given as leading to a slight advantage for White.

The line with 7. Qc2 and Bg5xf6 makes me think "1986" ...
  
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ErictheRed
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #46 - 01/08/14 at 16:30:51
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Thanks, Orangecounty.  My own experience was that against non-Masters I saw a lot of passive Closed Catalan positions where I had more space and play against a bad bishop on c8, more or less the same type of play that White gets when Black misplays a QGD.  I also saw a lot of Bogo-Indians.

I also wanted to point out that there is truly fashion in chess, and before Kramnik started playing the Catalan it was almost completely unknown to amateurs.  Of course that isn't the case any more, but amateur chess fashion is almost entirely dictated by which openings have had a good recent book written about them (or in the case of the Catalan, several!). 

Finally, I achieved a completely winning position against IM Danny Rensch recently by just following an old line recommended in a subvariation of Dunnington's old book: http://www.chess.com/video/player/live-sessions-an-old-friend-and-a-new-line.  Unfortunately I didn't find the most precise way of winning in a 10-minute game, and because Danny is an old friend I just took a draw at the end (I also didn't know that he was filming it and thought we'd look at the opening line and move order issues together, for fun). 

Afterward I looked through some of Danny's games and other videos in this line, and it looks like he's done some work on it and played it a lot against strong opposition (GMs even), and he just completely walked into a losing position against me unawares.  I don't mean that as a knock against Danny, I just want to point out that there are always plenty of interesting options that aren't in the latest repertoire books, and allowing yourself to be swayed too much by fashion (only what's been covered by Avrukh or Bologan) is dangerous.  And in that case, the line Danny walked into was known from...the mid 80's?  But it's completely out of fashion (for reasons unknown to me).  It was played once in Giri-Morozevich, 2012, in which White won quickly, so...it's a mystery why White doesn't play this way more often.    

Along those lines, I have a very good score with lines like the sharp 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. g3 d5 4. Nf3 Be7 5. Bg2 O-O 6. O-O dxc4 7.Na3!? and the "boring" 7. Qc2 a6 8. Qxc4 b5 9. Qc2 Bb7 10. Bg5 Nbd7 11. Bxf6 Nxf6 12. Nbd2.  I just analyze games of specialists (Krasenkow has an incredible score in 7.Na3, for instance) and go.  There is so much more to chess than "repertoire book theory." 
« Last Edit: 01/08/14 at 19:17:52 by ErictheRed »  
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OrangeCounty
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #45 - 01/07/14 at 21:42:47
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As a nonmaster who plays the Catalan regularly, I can speak to why it should appeal to practical players in the lower reaches of the 2000s and higher reaches of the 1000s.  Or, at least, why it appeals to me.

The Catalan is an opening where White has a clear plan, and success depends on the execution of that plan and the use of White's more extraneous resources (Q-side minor pieces) to achieve those plans.  In addition, the Catalan presents problems to the second player that are different from those posed by many other openings.  White has a lot of "ideas" but few requirements, leaving broad scope for the opponent to go wrong, even though the areas of conflict (d5, c4, the h1-a8 diagonal and the c-file) are fairly stereotyped.

The other point is that a lot of amateurs throw themselves off a cliff trying to defend the pawn after dxc4, which is useful.
  
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fling
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #44 - 01/07/14 at 15:35:12
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Sorry, don't have any special database, just Megabase 2012. But there is of course also a lot of material at ... Chesspublishing.com  Grin

I agree, though, it is pretty cumbersome to type all the lines. I am still working on it.

As for the holes, of the ones I found some have been played even OTB, not just in corr.
  
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cma6
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #43 - 01/07/14 at 15:04:29
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Fling,
As I have found in ICCF, there is nothing like a strong opponent(s) to show demonstrate the holes in one's opening repertoire.
Can you recommend any online databases that focus on the Catalan?
It is very burdensome to have to type into my computer all the lines from Avruch and Bologan's books.
  
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fling
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #42 - 01/06/14 at 06:28:27
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Yes, that is correct, I meant GM1 of course, sorry for the typo.
  
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cma6
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #41 - 01/06/14 at 04:14:54
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Fling,
Thanks for the recs. I have Avruch 1. d4 vol. 1 (2008), is that what you meant, as it covers the Catalan?
  I have  Bologan's "Powerful Catalan" (2012).
I will look into Wojo's Weapons 1.
  
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #40 - 01/06/14 at 00:27:35
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fling wrote on 01/05/14 at 08:29:38:
Avrukh's GM2, ....


ITYM Avrukh's GM1?
  
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ANDREW BRETT
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #39 - 01/05/14 at 11:11:53
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just on the 3 g3 line, quite a few strong players are happy to play the Benoni .
  
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fling
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #38 - 01/05/14 at 08:29:38
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cma6 wrote on 01/05/14 at 00:20:24:
I am interested in studying the Catalan with a Whte perspective. Can you recommend several books from your library. I am an ICCF GM and will do very intensive computer analysis the the best lines.


Avrukh's GM2, Wojo's weapon 1 and Bologan's books all are on the Catalan. There are holes in the repertoire in all of these, as I found out trying them in corr. chess. But they are a good starting point of course.
  
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cma6
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #37 - 01/05/14 at 00:20:24
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I am interested in studying the Catalan with a Whte perspective. Can you recommend several books from your library. I am an ICCF GM and will do very intensive computer analysis the the best lines.
  
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kylemeister
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #36 - 07/17/13 at 00:14:36
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ErictheRed wrote on 07/16/13 at 23:37:45:
If there's actually a theoretical problem, I suspect it's that Black can use the "extra" tempo to attack d4 very quickly, i.e. 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.g3 dc 4.Nf3 c5, etc.  At a quick glance it looks like the omission of ...Nf6 has helped Black a good amount. 


That is indeed one of the ideas I'm aware of.  One comparison would be that after 5. Bg2 Nc6 6. Qa4 cd 7. Nxd4 Qxd4 8. Bxc6+ Bd7 there's no Rd1.
  
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ErictheRed
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #35 - 07/16/13 at 23:37:45
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I don't know that 3.g3 is theoretically inferior, but Black can take advantage of not having played ...Nf6 yet in practice.  For instance, he can now transpose to a Stonewall Dutch since he knows that White is committed to the main lines with g2-g3 (1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 f5?! 4.Bf4!, or 4.Nc3 c6 5.Bf4!). 

If there's actually a theoretical problem, I suspect it's that Black can use the "extra" tempo to attack d4 very quickly, i.e. 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.g3 dc 4.Nf3 c5, etc.  At a quick glance it looks like the omission of ...Nf6 has helped Black a good amount.
  
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kylemeister
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Re: Catalan suited below 2000?
Reply #34 - 07/16/13 at 04:55:02
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Ty wrote on 07/16/13 at 02:39:55:
Isn't 3.g3 just an alternate move order? Can Black take advantage of it in any way?


Surely 3. Nf3 is more normal.  It seems that on 3. g3 dc (maybe also on 3...c6 and 3...c5) it suits Black not to have Nf3 and ...Nf6 in.
  
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