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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) C47: The Belgrade Gambit (Read 105767 times)
TonyRo
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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #215 - 06/26/09 at 14:43:28
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Kafka
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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #214 - 06/26/09 at 14:30:33
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Ah Mr Evans. Do you have a copy of this book? If so maybe I could borrow it for a week or two, seeing as we are members of the same club. If not I will try e-mailing him as you suggest.

Kafka = Richie.

Cheers
  
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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #213 - 06/26/09 at 13:52:54
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Monson's e-mail address is somewhere in this thread, and he clearly still looks in from time to time. Contacting him direct is what I did.

However, it does appear on places like ebay from time to time, so if you do not wish to contact him then this might be a viable alternative.
  

"Give a man a pawn, and he'll smell a rat. Give a man a piece, and he'll smell a patzer." - Me.

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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #212 - 06/26/09 at 13:28:14
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I'm thinking about incorporating the Belgrade Gambit into my own repertoire. However, I can't seem to find anywhere which sells Monson's book. I dont want to start playing it without some degree of theoretical knowledge. Does anyone know where I can obtain a copy of this book? If not are there any other resources out there.
  
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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #211 - 06/15/09 at 09:50:12
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Pity that 5...Be7 is so equal and that everyone knows such as all the repertoire books give it. Otherwise would be fun to play.

Havent played through it, but well done Mr monson. Look forward to your new book.

But best not get too excited by 'reasonable player beats duffer' game when choosing your repertoire.
  
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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #210 - 06/14/09 at 23:29:45
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That game was a beat-down, and almost inspired me, someone who doesn't even play 1. e4, to take up the Belgrade.

Grin
  

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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #209 - 06/14/09 at 21:53:18
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Markovich wrote on 03/29/09 at 20:00:05:
George Jempty wrote on 03/29/09 at 15:18:42:
Whatever, he accepted my challenge, so I won't be posting again until after that game finishes, and whatever the result, the analysis will be vetted with proper software, so we will get much closer to the truth than all the mental masturbation that this thread has consisted of


Yes, well, some would argue that degree of resemblance that any given chess analysis bears to masturbation is directly proportional to the reliance it places upon the judgements of a chess machine.  If you bother to read the this thread, which I will admit is a daunting task, you will see that it contains some rather good ideas.  

But there is more than a whiff of Richard Moody about you, Mr. Jempty, not only in your trust in these machines but also in your wholesale contempt for everyone else.  If you keep up the latter I will propose that you be banned.  

I expect Monson to tear your head off, by the way, just because I know he's a good chess player.


Looks like your prediction turned out to be absolutely spot on, and I can hardly wait for Mr. Jempty's promised computer vetted analysis so that we may know the truth of this encounter. Nevertheless it would not surprise if we do not hear from him in awhile. Grin

Tops  Smiley



  

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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #208 - 06/14/09 at 05:40:12
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George Jempty wrote on 03/29/09 at 12:32:45:
bamonson wrote on 07/27/04 at 17:05:52:
Craig wrote:

B) 5...Nb4(!)

This move is often given a ! in theoretical manuals.

<snip>

MONSON:
As I mentioned to Craig privately, it would be a sad state of offairs if "Junior" were to be adorned with credit for this intriguing knight sacrifice variation, since I came up with this myself back in 1997.  I first played it in correspondence tournaments in 1998 and also wrote some articles on it that were published by Stefan Buecker's _Kaissiber magazine_ in 1998.  I also discovered the 12.Qc4+TN in 1998 but didn't get the chance to use it in practice until 1999, against a 2430 rated player:

Monson, B - Sakai (2430) [C47]
Belgrade Gambit Corr. Thematic, 1999

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.d4 exd4 5.Nd5 Nb4 6.Nxd4 Nxe4 (note that 6...Nbxd5 7.exd5 Nxd5 8.Nf5 leads to a different sacrificial attack on the other wing after 8...Ne7 9.Bg5 f6 10.Bxf6 gxf6 11.Qh5+, etc.) 7.Nb5 Nxd5 8.Qxd5 Qe7 9.Nxc7+ Kd8 10.Bf4! d6 11.O-O-O Kxc7 12.Qc4+!N (other moves are possible, such as 12.Bc4, 12.f3 and even 12.Rd4).  12...Kb8 13.h4! (rather than Craig's--or "Junior's" suggestion of 13.Qd4) 13...Qe6 14.Qd4 f5 15.f3 Nf6 16.Bc4 (16.Bb5!?) 16...Qe7 (16...Qd7 17.Bb5!) 17.Rhe1 Qc7 18.Re3 Bd7 19.Rc3 Bc6 20.g4 fxg4 21.fxg4 h6 22.b4 a6 23.Re1 Qd8 24.Bf7! Kc7 25.a4 g5 26.hxg5 hxg5 27.Bxg5 Bg7 28.Re6 Rh1+ 29.Kb2 Rf1 30.Be8!! Rf3 31.Rxf3 Bxf3 32.Bxf6 Bxf6 33.Rxf6 Bxg4 (amazingly, material is equal, but black cannot save the position) 34.Bg6 Bc8 35.a5 1-0



GEORGE JEMPTY:
Has anybody in this thread heard of chess computers?  In particular when I plug this piece sacrifice line into my software, it gets evaluated as 1.25-1.75 in Black's advantage.  This then translates to White "having insufficient compensation" for the piece.

In particular I feel that Mr Monson does a gross disservice giving the variation "(16...Qd7 17.Bb5!)".  Black of course does not play 17...Qxb5?? but rather 17...Qc7.  A master handing out an exclamation mark in this position amounts to intellectual dishonesty and has the effect of leading would-be amateur Belgrade-gambiteer sheep to the slaughter.

Earlier the suggested "(16. Bb5!?)" has 16...Nh5 to contend with, and even earlier Black can give back the gambit piece with 14...Qxa2

I'm rated 2000+ on the queenalice correspondence chess site, and I hereby challenge Mr Monson to a game on that site where I will play 4...exd4 instead of my usual 4...Bb4 so he can play his beloved Belgrade Gambit.  And that's what this comes down to, a love affair, and we all know what they say: "love is blind".

This is my first post so I can't include URLs, but if you google for jemptymethod+queenalice you will find a link to my page there with ?id=11707 as the query string on the end of the URL (second google result when I perform the search).  There you will have a link to my games, and you can see from my last loss, to Mestre_Quin in 15 moves, that I obviously do NOT use a chess engine while I'm in the middle of a game.


MONSON:
First off, love may be blind, my friend, but so are computers.  Just plugging a given position into a computer program and exclaiming that because the computer evaluates the position as "1.25-1.75 in Black's advantage.  This then translates to White 'having insufficient compensation' for the piece." is a recipe for disaster!  

If there is one thing I've learned about computers over the years, it is that when dealing with deep positional sacrifices that have no clear-cut punchline within their horizon, they are highly susceptible to serious, often fatal, mistakes.  

Second, I wonder if it has ever occurred to Mr. Jempty that there might be other reasons why white's bishop might advantageously be placed on b5 (other than the obvious mate should black take the bishop), and that by achieving that location with a free tempo (i.e., with black placing his queen on d7 instead of e7) might be of some value to white's attack?

Finally, about three months ago I received a private email from George Jempty challenging me to an email correspondence game in the Belgrade Gambit!  

Having not been on this forum in a while I did not realize that he had written this vitriolic message here!  "Gross Disservice"? "Intellectual dishonesty"?  Wow!  But now that I've read it it makes sense that his email challenge to me read as "Death to the Belgrade Gambit!"

Well, of course I accepted his challenge.  For those who are interested here is the game with light notes.  It's not an especially great game, but does demonstrate just how quickly black's position can fall apart.

B. Monson-G. Jempty
Queen Alice Internet Chess Club
Belgrade Gambit corr. challenge game
Mar-June, 2009
3d/move +14 days

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. d4 exd4 5. Nd5 Nb4 6. Nxd4 Nxe4 7. Nb5 Nxd5 8. Qxd5 Qe7 9. Nxc7+ Kd8 10. Bf4 d6 11. O-O-O Kxc7 12. Qc4+ Kb8 13. h4 Qe6 14. Qd4 Qxa2? [Black gives back the knight voluntarily, perhaps thinking that he will be able to relieve some of the pressure and yet come out of the opening two pawns up.  Needless to say, it turns out bad.] 15. Qxe4 Qa1+ 16. Kd2 Qxb2 17. Be2! [We're still in my home analysis.  Black had expected 17.Bc4, which is a move most computers like, but the text is stronger since black is denied his time-gaining check on b4 and the bishop will find excellent service on f3.]  17...g6 18. Rb1 Qa2 19. Bf3 [Natural and strong.  I briefly considered 19.Qe5, threatening mate and the Rh8, but didn't want to allow any needless counterplay with 19...Bf5. 19...Qa5+ 20. Kc1 Qa3+ 21. Kd1 Qa6 22. Qe8 1-0

After 22...Bg7 white has the simple but pretty 23.Rxb7+ Qxb7 24.Bxd6+ Qc7 25.Qb5+ Bb7 26.Qxb7#

To his credit, Mr. Jempty apologized for his poor showing in this game (which I also construe as somewhat of an unspoken apology for some of the above comments), and even expressed a desire to play the Belgrade from the white side.  I certainly encourage him to do so! He'll have a lot of fun and a healthy success rate to boot.

Cheers,

Bruce Monson



  
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bamonson
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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #207 - 06/14/09 at 02:58:48
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Markovich wrote on 04/20/09 at 12:10:34:
I know from having had private conversations with Monson, not recently, that he has built up a vast store of information about all sorts of Belgrade Gambit lines.  It would be wonderful if he would produce another edition of his book.  


Indeed I do intend to publish a 2nd edition to my book.  It has been 13 years and there have been a lot of improvements and innovations over the years.

However, I'm currently in the middle of writing two book: one a biography on the famous Hungarian-American player, Herman Steiner; and also a commemorative book on the two Piatigorsky Cup tournaments from 1963 and 1966.

And by the way, as a quick message to my friend Alejandro Melchor (going all the way back to the thematic tournaments I hosted on my old Belgrade Gambit website):  

It would be poor form, my friend, for you to distribute electronic (e-book) copies of my book.  It is my intellectual property after all, and believe it or not I continue to receive orders for copies my book.

Thank you for your consideration.

Kind Regards,

Bruce Monson


  
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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #206 - 05/22/09 at 16:07:00
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There is no reason to be hesitant - we are here to share knowledge of ideas, and seek the truth in these lines. I am certainly never  against this in principle, as long as both participants are open to ideas.

However, I am not sure that 6.Nxd4 has ever been regarded as white's main try against 5...Nb4. Certainly, the line with 9...f6 is quite appealing, but the 9...d5 has always put me off the whole idea. However, instead of 8.Nf5, it may well be that 8.Bc4 is an improvement, although there seems to be very scant material on the move. I'll accept that on first glance it might not look particularly promising after 8...Qe7+ (untested to my knowledge, but appears to me to be critical) 9.Kf1 Nb6 10.Bb3 d6 11.Bf4, but it is surprisingly difficult for black to continue, e.g. 11...Qf6 12.Qe2+ Kd8 13.Qd2 Be7 14.c4! and white has definite compensation.

However, also as noted by TopNotch, I believe that 6.Nxf6+ Qxf6 7.Bc4 is regarded as white's main try, and that the positions resulting after e.g. 7...Bc5 8.O-O d6!? 9.e5!? dxe5 10.Ng5 are sharp and complicated enough to keep most black players away. However, I do believe that ultimately black should be able to prove some advantage here.

So, the question has to be, is black better in the position after 9...d5 10.Bxe7 Bxe7 11.Nxg7+ Kf8 12.Qh5 Qd6 13.Be2 Qb4+ (the greedy approach looks critical) 14.c3 Qxb2 15.O-O and, okay, black has the bishop pair, but to me it looks unclear and that white will have his own chances. 15...c6 looks obvious but after 16.Qd4 Rg8 17.Rae1 white is fine, so black probably needs to grab on c3 as well, but after 15...Qxc3 16.Qxd5 c6 17. Qe4 Bd6 18.Qh4 again looks like compensation to me.

I'd be interested to see how you would continue for black after 13.Be2 as you are a much stronger player than I and I have a vested interest in this line... but at the moment, I'm not seeing an advantage for either side, just a position where both sides have plus and minus points and can both play for a win.
  

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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #205 - 05/21/09 at 04:16:11
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AMM wrote on 04/19/09 at 14:48:53:
Craig,

        I am also according with you, main lines of Four Knights with classical 4.Bb5 and nowadays idea 4.g3 are correct, but solid and peaceful moves ( despite of Nunn' and other English players revival in 90's ). Objectively the "Scotch" (4.d4) Belgrade gambit is the most promising White chance to get some kind of initiative. The advantage of first player is to surprise his opponent with some often innocent looking continuations which has a chance opportunist tactic, while hoping to maintain a sound position if Black should find his way through the maze of trappy lines. Besides is relatively easy to study or memorize specifical continuations. Personally I believe best for Black is avoiding with 4..Bb4 though it leads to a sharp struggle where a good knowledge of theory of both sides is required.

Summarizing Black answers, I think:

A) 5..Nxd5; 5..Bc5 and 5..Bb4+ are totally discredit lines.

B) 5..d6 is a reasonable one, but very untested.

C) 5..h6!? is very unknown and probably Black would need to test it more often. It has the advantage on avoiding White Bg5 ( or sometimes Ng5 ) usual ideas.

D)5..Nb4!? probably the only attempt on trying initiative as Black - if he wants the victory ... -. I talked personally with French BG specialist GM Erik Prié three years ago and he himself left off playing it owing to this move.

D) 5..Ne4 is a bit risky and both sides need a great amount on theory to remember after 6.Qe2 ( sometimes even Encyclopaedic Head !? ); otherwise 6.Bc4!? deserves more consideration. Personally I didn't recommend 5..Ne4 on Master level neither Amateur's one.
 
E) 5..Be7 I am according with you this peaceful move taking away White's attacking possibilities is a good response ... but only " if Black wants anything other than a draw" ( your own words ), which is absolutely adequate if White player is lower-rated; I myself have got some points in this way vs. higher opponents with any risk !?. Personally I think best White move is 6.Bc4 again, so 6.Bf4 0-0!?

When I told I'll type Monson's book, I meant I'll write ONLY the games ( with new recent games and engines analysis ), NOT whole "words" book ( not an e-book as you think ). In fact, I helped him with some Spanish games of those years, and even I talked with GM Bellón who offered me some unknown games by himself.

This "Belgrade" forum it has been one of the most well-read and some of us would appreciate if Bruce inform if he wants on publishing another 2nd. ed. of the book, .. or at least if he can write here again.

All need his help !?


I'm always hesitant about re-awakening this protracted (partly my fault)  and by now infamous thread. Nevertheless, into the breech I go once again.

Been looking at this stuff again recently and saw it mentioned in some sources that the following sacrificial approach holds promise for White against 5...Nb4: 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.d4 exd4 5.Nd5 Nb4 6.Nxd4 Nbxd5 7.exd5 Nxd5 8.Nf5 Ne7 9.Bg5 f6?! 10.Bxf6 gf6 11.Qh5+ Ng6 12. 0-0-0  d6 13.Nh4 Bg7 14.Re1+ Kf8 15.Bc4 c6 16.Qxg6!! very pretty, and white regains his piece and retains the initiative after 16...d5 17.Qd3.

However going back, Black should prefer  9...d5 after which White can regain his pawn with 10.Bxe7 Bxe7 11.Nxg7+ but after 11...Kf8 12.Nh5 Qd6! its Black who is slightly better due to his bishop pair and queenside pawn majority. Black's king's position maybe slightly weakened it is true, but I don't see any meaningful way for white to exploit this factor in the coming play.

In my opinion if White is to have any objective chances against 5...Nxb4, he will need to investigate the consequences of 6.Nxf6 very carefully.

Tops Smiley
  

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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #204 - 04/20/09 at 12:10:34
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I know from having had private conversations with Monson, not recently, that he has built up a vast store of information about all sorts of Belgrade Gambit lines.  It would be wonderful if he would produce another edition of his book.
  

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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #203 - 04/19/09 at 14:48:53
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Craig,

        I am also according with you, main lines of Four Knights with classical 4.Bb5 and nowadays idea 4.g3 are correct, but solid and peaceful moves ( despite of Nunn' and other English players revival in 90's ). Objectively the "Scotch" (4.d4) Belgrade gambit is the most promising White chance to get some kind of initiative. The advantage of first player is to surprise his opponent with some often innocent looking continuations which has a chance opportunist tactic, while hoping to maintain a sound position if Black should find his way through the maze of trappy lines. Besides is relatively easy to study or memorize specifical continuations. Personally I believe best for Black is avoiding with 4..Bb4 though it leads to a sharp struggle where a good knowledge of theory of both sides is required.

Summarizing Black answers, I think:

A) 5..Nxd5; 5..Bc5 and 5..Bb4+ are totally discredit lines.

B) 5..d6 is a reasonable one, but very untested.

C) 5..h6!? is very unknown and probably Black would need to test it more often. It has the advantage on avoiding White Bg5 ( or sometimes Ng5 ) usual ideas.

D)5..Nb4!? probably the only attempt on trying initiative as Black - if he wants the victory ... -. I talked personally with French BG specialist GM Erik Prié three years ago and he himself left off playing it owing to this move.

D) 5..Ne4 is a bit risky and both sides need a great amount on theory to remember after 6.Qe2 ( sometimes even Encyclopaedic Head !? ); otherwise 6.Bc4!? deserves more consideration. Personally I didn't recommend 5..Ne4 on Master level neither Amateur's one.
   
E) 5..Be7 I am according with you this peaceful move taking away White's attacking possibilities is a good response ... but only " if Black wants anything other than a draw" ( your own words ), which is absolutely adequate if White player is lower-rated; I myself have got some points in this way vs. higher opponents with any risk !?. Personally I think best White move is 6.Bc4 again, so 6.Bf4 0-0!?

When I told I'll type Monson's book, I meant I'll write ONLY the games ( with new recent games and engines analysis ), NOT whole "words" book ( not an e-book as you think ). In fact, I helped him with some Spanish games of those years, and even I talked with GM Bellón who offered me some unknown games by himself.

This "Belgrade" forum it has been one of the most well-read and some of us would appreciate if Bruce inform if he wants on publishing another 2nd. ed. of the book, .. or at least if he can write here again.

All need his help !?
  
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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #202 - 04/18/09 at 04:08:04
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Mr Melchor, I would be the first to ask for this resource, and if I can contribute anything to your eBook from my analysis then I would be happy to do so. I'm not a master-strength player and there are few openings that I "know", but this is one of the few I feel confident to comment on given my experience and record. Somewhere on my PC I have a fairly extensive set of notes on the opening (though, in the case of 5...Nxe4, sadly not overly positive) and would be happy to share any analysis which may be of use.

I was not aware of the Spielmann game though, as with many gambits, it seems fitting that Spielmann was one of the originators. Still, with the amount that Trakjovic and his compatriots contributed, the opening has been designated correctly. Ironically, one of the rarest lines, 5...h6, has been one of the few lines which concerns me in the opening. Other than 5...Nxe4 (or 5...Be7 6.Bc4!? Nxe4) and possibly 5...Nb4 (though I think I can navigate these waters safely), there is no critical test to the Belgrade - white is at least equal in all other lines, and whilst 5...Be7 is the most popular response, I believe 5.Nd5 to be the most pressing try in the Four Knights.

Yes, that is my claim. The Scotch Four Knights gives white nothing - I personally prefer black in the main lines. The 4.Bb5 lines were de-fanged some time ago as well. 4.g3 is a nice "system" for white to learn and play game after game, but objectively offers nothing.

The Belgrade offers black the opportunity to cold-bloodedly try and refute white's opening play. They seldom takes up this opportunity, and when he or she does, they often go wrong quickly. More likely, however, is that they choose the "easy" equality after 5...Be7 and suddenly find things not to be so easy. Look at most/all of the games on this thread after 5...Be7 - how many times does a lower-rated white player easily draw with his higher-rated opponent? How many times does a highly-rated black player grind down a weaker white player? I defy anyone to tell me that 5...Be7 is a worthwhile line if black wants anything other than a draw.. the objective merits of such a result as black notwithstanding, against this opening surely black has to be hunting for more?
I still objectively feel 5...Nxe4 leads to a draw, but white has to play a LOT more accurately to achieve this. After 5...Be7, "easy equality" though it may be, white is most likely to be able to press for a victory, with few losing chances. I'll take those odds against any player, any day.
  

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Re: The Belgrade Gambit
Reply #201 - 04/17/09 at 22:42:46
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AMM wrote on 04/17/09 at 22:05:53:
[color=#ff0000]Finally, a curious History note: In all books ( including Monson's one ) the Belgrade is known was invented by Yug circles ( mainly Mihajlo Trajkovic ), but the facts are others ...


In Kaissiber 4(1997), Bruce Monson writes on both theory and history of the Belgrade Gambit. He gives the game Richter - Becker, 1938, and reports how, a few years later, Trajkovic was shown that game in a German book (Monson's source: Miroslav Radojcic). Trajkovic wasn't convinced that Richter's idea was bad, and so he started his analyses... I am a big fan of Kurt Richter, but the name "Belgrade Gambit" is established, and I feel it is legitimate to say that Trajkovic has invented the gambit.  
  
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