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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) The trendy a4 Modern Italian (Read 2120 times)
Keano
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #11 - 08/03/17 at 12:32:04
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There were 2 a4 Italian games in the Sinquefield Cup yesterday which resulted in exactly the same middlegame position - Karjakin-Svidler and MVL-So

Even though I lost count of the amount of times commentator Maurice Ashley said the games were Spanish or Ruy Lopez.
  
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Keano
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #10 - 07/31/17 at 23:51:35
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Also the maneouvre Na3-c2-e3 of course.

The list of subtleties is endless.

  
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JEH
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #9 - 07/31/17 at 06:37:59
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mn wrote on 07/31/17 at 02:12:02:
In turn, h3 is plan to stop Re1 being met by ...Ng4.


It also helps you avoid losing to a Bacrot mate  Wink
  

Those who want to go by my perverse footsteps play such pawn structure with fuzzy atypical still strategic orientations

Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right, stuck in the middlegame with you
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mn
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #8 - 07/31/17 at 02:12:02
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My impression was that playing a2-a4 before Black goes ...a6 allows Black to favourably play ...a5!

To me, the line 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bc4 Bc5 4 0-0 Nf6 5 d3 d6 6 c3 a6 7 a4!?, intending Na3-c2, Be3 and eventually landing the Knight on e3 looks quite interesting.

The problem, though, is I'm not sure what the ideal answer to 6...0-0 is:
- 7 a4 a5!=
- 7 Bb3 is the main line, but doesn't really fit with the a4 concept.
- 7 Nbd2 obviously precludes the Na3-c2 plan.
- 7 h3 a6 8 a4 can be played, obviously, but h3 seems like a bit of a waste of a move here. By my understanding, Na3-c2 is played so that White can maneuver his Knight around without necessarily needing to clear the f1 square for the Knight. In turn, h3 is plan to stop Re1 being met by ...Ng4. So if Re1 isn't being played, h3 seems like a slightly strange move to me.
- 7 Re1; see above.

Maybe something entirely different like 7 Bg5 could be worth a try (given Black has comitted to castling)? I'm not sure.
  
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GabrielGale
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #7 - 11/18/16 at 06:13:19
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The game courtesy of TWIC:

  

http://www.toutautre.blogspot.com/
A Year With Nessie ...... aka GM John Shaw's The King's Gambit (http://thekinggambit.blogspot.com.au/)
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #6 - 11/17/16 at 19:59:11
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cheese111 wrote on 11/17/16 at 19:45:35:
It doesn't look like the Italian has been played since 1981 in a World Championship match, but it is currently being played by Carlsen. As this is of some interest to my repertoire, I think I'll upload some content in the next few days.


Yeah, that sort of Italian had some popularity in the 1980s. For example I believe Andrew Soltis did a book on it, writing that it gives Spanish-like play without all the theory. Fast forward 30+ years, and there's a book about to come out on it from NIC for which the blurb begins, "a chess opening that does not require you to study continuously evolving theory."
  
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #5 - 11/17/16 at 19:56:33
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cheese111 wrote on 11/17/16 at 19:45:35:
It doesn't look like the Italian has been played since 1981 in a World Championship match, but it is currently being played by Carlsen. As this is of some interest to my repertoire, I think I'll upload some content in the next few days.


I was just gonna post on this. Carlsen lashed out the moves pretty quickly until move 13, when Karjakin started thinking and played 13...Nxe4. Interesting.
  
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cheese111
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #4 - 11/17/16 at 19:45:35
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It doesn't look like the Italian has been played since 1981 in a World Championship match, but it is currently being played by Carlsen. As this is of some interest to my repertoire, I think I'll upload some content in the next few days.
  
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Confused_by_Theory
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #3 - 10/30/16 at 22:25:00
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Hello.

The a4 move takes space and the main idea is that this will prove to be useful at some point. A small upside is also that b2-b4 is marginally more attractive with a4 played.

It's hard to say if white can get anything theoretically playing like this; after all a4 is not a developing move. On the other hand quick development is rarely going to test black's inherently solid Italian setup anyway so white might as well try something else.

Have a nice day.
  
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #2 - 10/30/16 at 18:24:13
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I'd say that it's a serious try for an advantage, but like in every main line, respectable opening, Black will eventually equalize with best play. 

Bryan Paulsen would call it a draw, I'd call it a chance to play for a win with White.  Both are essentially correct.
  
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Re: The trendy a4 Modern Italian
Reply #1 - 10/30/16 at 17:59:35
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GabrielGale wrote on 10/30/16 at 12:46:07:
Is this a4 Modern Italian a draw?
Or a chance to play for a win with White?


Sorry for the short response, but it is neither of that. Its just another way to reach an interesting middlegame with mutual chances where the better player wins.
  
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GabrielGale
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The trendy a4 Modern Italian
10/30/16 at 12:46:07
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Dear ChessPubbers, It has been some time since the Forum analysed any openings and variations in a collaborative manner. I thought I will attempt to begin a discussion in the very old Italian game.
From the just concluded Russian Superfinals, GM Peter Svidler had been posting a video of himself conducting a post-mortem after every round on Chess 24. In Rd 7, he had this to say:
Quote:
A couple of Superfinals ago I actually played the Bird Opening (1.f4) against him [Dmitry Jakovenko] with White such was my despair at his opening repertoire. The Bird probably is not forthcoming tomorrow but this should give you an impression of just how solid his black repertoire is if I can occasionally be driven to extremes like that.

Why, 'cos in rd 8, Svidler has to play Jakovenko. And this is what Chess24 reported:
Quote:
So what would he do? Well, as Svidler explains in his latest post-mortem, he decided to adopt, the old monkey-see monkey-do strategy, and play the newfangled Giuoco Piano with 8.a4.
The players ended up reaching the same position on move 17 as Fedoseev-Tomashevsky in Round 4, but took about 40 minutes each to get there, which Svidler described as, a bit ridiculous.


Previously back in June, I posted on another thread http://www.chesspub.com/cgi-bin/chess/YaBB.pl?num=1432085393/37#37 at Reply #34, a quote from GM Colovic's blog on the opening trends in the Grand Chess Tour double consecutive weekend header Quote:
There were already 4 Giuoco Pianos, 3 with the recently very popular plan with a2-a4
.
Only TN responded Quote:
There were already 4 Giuoco Pianos, 3 with the recently very popular plan with a2-a4
[reply #35].

I attach the following games based on Nepomniachtchi's win over Mamedyarov from the recent Tal Memorial and included some recent games with players over 2600. [There are lots more recent games but I don't seem to be able to attach a pgn file. Can anyone help? Where is the "button" to attach files?]

So, what is/are the idea/s behind a a2-a4 push in the modern Italian?
Is this a4 Modern Italian a draw?
Or a chance to play for a win with White?

  

http://www.toutautre.blogspot.com/
A Year With Nessie ...... aka GM John Shaw's The King's Gambit (http://thekinggambit.blogspot.com.au/)
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