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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) Palliser's Benoni Recommendation (Read 13399 times)
Smyslov_Fan
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #33 - 10/29/05 at 12:26:47
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Bonsai,

I once studied these lines, and stopped worrying about 7....Nbd7 after 8.Nf3 intending 9.e5.  Nobody's ever played that way against me in blitz or any other time control (at least that I can remember), and I just don't believe any Benoni fan would even bother trying to breathe some life into it.  Having said that, perhaps Super Moro will come up with some reason to play it!

Richard, what do you think, is 7...Nbd7 worth serious investigation or does White just get a big edge?
  
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Bonsai
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #32 - 10/20/05 at 14:55:43
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1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 e6 4.Nc3 exd5 5.cxd5 d6 6.e4 g6 7.f4 Bg7 (7.f4 Nbd7 8.Bb5 a6 9.Bxd7 Nxd7 (=) looks fine too)

After the 7...Nbb7, I think white shouldn't play 8.Bb5 but rather 8.Nf3. I suppose this all then depends on the evaluation of 8.Nf3 Bg7 9.e5 dxe5 10.fxe5 Ng4 [10...Qe7 doesn't look good] 11.e6 fxe6 12.dxe6. Or does white have something better than 9.e5? (e.g. 9.Be2 0-0 would just be a transposition to a line that's supposed to be most acceptable for black).
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8.Bb5+ Nfd7 (not 8...Nbd7?, which turned out pretty bad in the game Sokolov - Topalov, Wijk aan Zee 1996) 9.a4 0-0 10.Nf3 Na6 11.0-0 Nc7 12.Bd3 a6 13.Kh1 Rb8 14.f5 b5 15.Bg5 Nf6 16.e5 dxe5 17.Nxe5 Bb7 18.Nc6 Bxc6 19.dxc6 c4 20.Bc2 Qxd1 21.Raxd1 Rb6 22.Bxf6 Bxf6 23.fxg6 fxg6 24.Be4 bxa4 25.Nxa4 Rb4 (=+) Sotnikov - Totsky, 1992

As to 8...Nbd7 - see this other thread http://altmax.com/cgi-local/cpf/YaBB.cgi?board=nimzobenoni;action=display;num=11... where there is a certain doubt as to whether the Sokolov - Topalov game is really so clear. (compare also http://altmax.com/cgi-local/cpf/YaBB.cgi?board=nimzobenoni;action=display;num=11...)
My question was whether in that aforementioned Sokolov-Topalov game 20...Qg2 would not be a serious improvement after which I don't really see that black is worse.
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So, I'll be on the look-out for more advice from "Bonsai" regarding the Modern Benoni  Smiley

Smiley
  
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IMRichardPalliser
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #31 - 10/20/05 at 05:41:10
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Well Black was certainly OK in Rowson-Ward, although Greenfeld claims that White should deviate quite early.  Elsewhere, 7...a6 8 h3!? b5 9 Bd3 Bg7 10 0-0 0-0 (aka 7...Bg7 8 h3 0-0 9 Bd3 b5 10 0-0 a6) is quite tricky to face, but what's wrong with this logical (in the sense that the Bc8 lacks a good square) idea of ...Ra7-e7, asking White what his plan is? Often there will eventually be some queenside break (with White tied to e4), but any queenside opening should help Black as much as White.
  
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #30 - 10/19/05 at 20:13:05
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Is Epishin's 7... a6 8. Qe2 so fearsome? I haven't looked closely at the latest NIC yb article. but i recall quite a number of lines go into the endgame.
Against 7.... a6 move order, i am happy with allowing Black to play b5 (i prefer that than to allow Bg4, or to allow the Suba plan with 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 c5 3. d5 e6 4. Nc3 exd5 5. cxd5 d6 6. Nf3 g6 7. h3 a6 8. a4 Qe7). Vegh thinks 7... a6 move-order is no "magic pill", and White has scored reasonably with 56%.

Take a look at:

Dreev, Alexey-Emms, John , Hastings 2000
1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 c5 4. d5 d6 5. Nc3 exd5 6. cxd5 g6 7. e4 a6 8. h3 b5 9. Bd3 Bg7 10. O-O c4 11. Bc2 O-O 12. Bf4 Re8 13. Re1 Bb7 14. a3 Qb6 15. Be3 Qc7 16. Qd2 Nbd7 17. Nh2 Nc5 18. Bd4 Rab8 19. Ng4 Ncd7 20. Ne2 Nxe4 21. Bxe4 Rxe4 22. Bxg7 Kxg7 23. Ng3 Ree8 24. Ne4 f6 25. Qc3 Re5 26. f4 Rf5 27. Ng3 Rxf4 28. Re7+ Kh8 29. Qe3 g5 30. Nh5 Rxg4 31. hxg4 Rf8 32. Rxh7+ 1-0

Sokolov,Ivan-Hamdouchi,Hichem, FRA-chT 2003
1.d4 e6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 exd5 4.cxd5 d6 5.Nc3 g6 6.e4 Bg7 7.Nf3 a6 8.h3 b5 9.Bd3 Nf6 10.0-0 0-0 11.Re1 Re8 12.Bf4 Ra7 13.a3 Rae7 14.Rc1 Nh5 15.Bg5 Bf6 16.Be3 Nd7
17.b4 Bh8 18.Qd2 Nhf6 19.Bb1 cxb4 20.axb4 Nb6 21.Bd3 Bb7 22.Bg5 Rc7 23.Ne2 Nc4 24.Bxc4 Rxc4
25.Rxc4 bxc4 26.Ng3 Qc7 27.Qf4 Nd7 28.Qh4 Ne5 29.Nxe5 Bxe5 30.Rc1 Bg7 31.Bf6 h6 32.Nh5 Bf8
33.Qg4 Bc8 34.Bc3 Be7 35.Qf4 gxh5 36.Qxh6 f6 37.Qg6+  1-0

Admittedly these games are a mismatch in terms of elo (with all apologies to John!), but Black's position is not easy even if he gets in his much-desired b5.
  
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #29 - 10/19/05 at 11:21:05
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Hi you all,

I'm just picking up the Modern Benoni and was looking on the internet for some resources on this interesting opening for Black. I was very happy to find out about this forum and started reading the messages on here.

I also bought Pallisers "The Modern Benoni Revealed", which is quite good (came out in 2005, so I supposed it would cover the latest theory on this subject - and I was right  Wink ).

Concerning the Taimanov Attack (which seems to be a System for White that scares off a lot of (potential) Benoni players), as far as I can tell by now, "Bonsai" is right in saying:

Quote:
I don't know is there really a problem with the Nfd7 + 0-0 + Nb8-a6-c7 + Rb8 + a6 etc. line? (i.e. 7.f4 Bg7 8.Bb5+ Nfd7 9.a4 0-0 10.Nf3 Na6 11.0-0 Nc7 12.Bd3 Rb8 or maybe 12...a6, can't remember exactly which move order is better or whether it matters)


The Chessbase "Modern Benoni CD" gives the following line for Black:

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 e6 4.Nc3 exd5 5.cxd5 d6 6.e4 g6 7.f4 Bg7 (7.f4 Nbd7 8.Bb5 a6 9.Bxd7 Nxd7 (=) looks fine too) 8.Bb5+ Nfd7 (not 8...Nbd7?, which turned out pretty bad in the game Sokolov - Topalov, Wijk aan Zee 1996) 9.a4 0-0 10.Nf3 Na6 11.0-0 Nc7 12.Bd3 a6 13.Kh1 Rb8 14.f5 b5 15.Bg5 Nf6 16.e5 dxe5 17.Nxe5 Bb7 18.Nc6 Bxc6 19.dxc6 c4 20.Bc2 Qxd1 21.Raxd1 Rb6 22.Bxf6 Bxf6 23.fxg6 fxg6 24.Be4 bxa4 25.Nxa4 Rb4 (=+) Sotnikov - Totsky, 1992

So, I'll be on the look-out for more advice from "Bonsai" regarding the Modern Benoni  Smiley
  
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Paul Hopwood
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #28 - 09/21/05 at 10:04:11
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Hi all,
        Nice to see such lively debate about an equally lively opening!

Having looked through this entire thread, I'll add my twopenneth for what it's worth.

White can be cunning in the Bf4 lines by holding back on Nf3 and playing 6 Bf4 and 7 Qa4+ if allowed.  Black should play 6...a6 and transpose to the main lines.  I believe these lines do carry quite a bit of poison for the simple reason that positions arise that are unlike any other variation and understanding alone isn't enough.  However, I concede I could well be wrong in this and it may just be that I have suffered at Richard's hands in too many blitz games!

In The Taimanov Attack, ..Nbd7 is fighting back with lots of new ideas and Rowson-Palliser is a long way from the end of the road.  Obviously playing a sharp opening just to have to defend R+B vs R isn't my idea of fun either, but there is certainly more room for potential improvement.  ...Nfd7 has also been doing well in both the ...Qh4+ and in the main lines.

As regards the MML, I thought black was having difficulty after Epishin's Qe2! in the 7...a6 lines, but in the main line with 9...b5, white had nothing better than the 2 rooks and 4 vs. queen and 4 ending.

Apologies for not really fleshing this post out with much analysis, but I have just arrived at uni and I don't have any of my books with me.  Also with it being freshers weeks, my poor carbon-based database refuses to download right now!   Wink

Will hopefully be able to add some analysis soon.

Regards

Paul Hopwood
  
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Fernando Semprun
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #27 - 09/17/05 at 14:20:57
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Psakhis was the one that stated in his excellent book

"I havenot had the youthful enthusiasm to play the Benoni (without waiting for Nf3 and thus allowing the Taimanov...)"

Since I am not a true 1.d4 player and the Nimzo vs the  QI doesnot look so much harder/difficult to play against... I will still consider the Taimanov as the critical line against the Benoni...
  

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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #26 - 09/16/05 at 22:04:16
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Am I missing something?

Taimanov is the real problem for the Benoni. [...]

Topalov  tried Nbd7, but gave up. It is really difficult to do much against Taimanov in my view (?)



I don't think Nbd7 is anywhere near as bad as its reputation.  The simple fact, and perhaps this is the reason why Topalov switched variations, is that the resulting positions have been worked out deep into the endgame and offer Black few winning chances against best play.  (Of course, Sokolov-Topalov may have speeded him along this path, but important improvements were subsequently found.)

I feel a bit like a broken record here (cf: 7.f4 Qe7 thread), but I think Black is fine in this line, and would be quite happy if someone could prove me wrong.
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Regarding some of the earlier conversation, about knight's tour lines, Black has no problems, even after the Nf3-d2-c4-e3 (after e2e4), a4-a5 business.  Often Black can prevent the full implementation of this plan or develop counterplay in the meantime -- it takes quite a few moves for White to achieve this type of set-up.
  
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #25 - 09/16/05 at 20:03:36
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Am I missing something?

Taimanov is the real problem for the Benoni. I checked the recommendations by Watson but then, as Mathew Sadler aptly expressed, you actually look at the position(s) forgetting what Watson claims and... I find them dreadful for black...




I remember once hearing IM Watson discuss the Taimanov line, and I also looked up his book when it came out.  I didn't actually buy it because I decided much the same thing that Fernando Semprun did:  Black's game hangs on an unravelling thread.

IM Watson was under no illusions about the playability of the Modern Benoni, but I understood his book to be an attempt to show the best lines in spite of everything.  I thought he suggested that the best thing to do was to play the Modern Benoni only after White had already played Nf3 and his Taimanov lines were more for completeness than as a heartfelt recommendation.  I could be wrong, but I think if you read the introduction and the notes very carefully, he hedges his bets on this line.

The Taimanov would be the only thing White would have to worry about if White could impose a move order on Black.  Since that isn't possible, there are other lines and other chapters that are important.  That's where Richard Palliser's recommendation comes in handy.  It addresses what to do if you fall into the Benoni after you've already played Nf3 as White.

Mind you, I still prefer the main line ideas to Qd1-a4-b3.  But that may be more a matter of taste than of objective strength.
  
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #24 - 09/16/05 at 17:34:02
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I don't know is there really a problem with the Nfd7 + 0-0 + Nb8-a6-c7 + Rb8 + a6 etc. line? (i.e. 7.f4 Bg7 8.Bb5+ Nfd7 9.a4 0-0 10.Nf3 Na6 11.0-0 Nc7 12.Bd3 Rb8 or maybe 12...a6, can't remember exactly which move order is better or whether it matters)
  
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Fernando Semprun
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #23 - 09/16/05 at 14:37:36
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Am I missing something?

Taimanov is the real problem for the Benoni. I checked the recommendations by Watson but then, as Mathew Sadler aptly expressed, you actually look at the position(s) forgetting what Watson claims and... I find them dreadful for black...

I analysed the Nbd7 line too ages ago. Amazingly, Piket-Ivanchuk Melody amber never played the Bh6!! given in Psakhis ( a real killer).

Topalov  tried Nbd7, but gave up. It is really difficult to do much against Taimanov in my view (?)

  

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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #22 - 09/09/05 at 09:32:46
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@Palliser

Thanks for the reply and reposing your faith in Nf3 and Bf4 against Benoni. I have to make a confession here. I am ashamed. But it did cross my mind that since your repertoire crosses here, I thought you wanted to keep some cards close to your chest. I'm sorry and I don't feel that way any more.

Cordially

Castlerock
  

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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #21 - 09/09/05 at 06:46:38
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Interested to see all this differing Benoni views. For what it's worth I still believe in Nf3 and Bf4 and, bar the Modern Main Line, can't see any other promising alternatives after Nf3. Of course there's g3, but that's not really me!
Yes, 9 Nf3 in the Taimanov is certainly tricky, although Black's seen it off before and will hopefully again! Certainly it currently has good surprise value though.
  
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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #20 - 09/09/05 at 05:31:12
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The challenges for Black are most definitely not insuperable - at least not in the Classical Main Line - which is why, increasingly, players are turning towards the Modern Main Line (MML) which mostly involves leaving the knight on f3.  In fact, many White players, even up to quite a high standard, are so bemused to see the knight dropping back to a8 that they think they have an overwhelming position and either go crazy trying to force a breakthrough or get frustrated that they can't find one.  I have beaten a number of very strong players and even titled players with the Modern Benoni

I have found Black's position to be OK in the MML, following Watson's recommendations (the line I played anyway, before his book came out).  I have not seen Christiansen's NIC article though  Undecided

Of more concern is a recent trend to play 7.f4 Bg7 8.Bb5† Nfd7 9.Nf3!?, simply allowing Black to expand on the queenside.  Really quite dangerous.
  

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Re: Palliser's Benoni Recommendation
Reply #19 - 09/09/05 at 04:29:15
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@alumbrado,

Good points!  These challenges for Black are usually insuperable.  White scores very well in the main line of the Benoni as a result of this.  Is there any way that Black can avoid the mainline without going ballistic with some weird, unsound sac?
  
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