Latest Updates:
Page Index Toggle Pages: 1 [2] 
Topic Tools
Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) Berlin - early 9...h6 (Read 9361 times)
IMJohnCox
God Member
*****
Offline


I Love ChessPublishing!

Posts: 1547
Location: London
Joined: 01/28/06
Gender: Male
Re: Berlin - early 9...h6
Reply #6 - 12/23/08 at 11:35:24
Post Tools
My first thought is that today an early ...Be6 is mainly played with the idea of meeting Ng5 with ...Ke7. I would expect the drawback of 9 ...h6 10 h3 Be6 to be that you are not in time to stop Ne2-f4xe6, and normally this is something you don't want to happen. But if a German IM has been playing it regularly (I hadn't noticed this) then he must have some idea, of course.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Papageno
Senior Member
****
Offline


FM

Posts: 299
Location: Germany
Joined: 06/12/08
Gender: Male
Re: Berlin - early 9...h6
Reply #5 - 12/22/08 at 23:29:17
Post Tools
Thanks for your replies, especially the clarifications by book author John Cox.

I noticed that German GM Naiditsch regularly uses the Berlin Wall, and in his games he seems to put either 9.... h6 10. h3 Ld7 or 9... Ne7 10. h3 h6 (usually in this order) out of the bag. Just mentioning this because emery opined that the added pair of moves h3/h6 is more useful to white. However, Mr. Naiditsch doesn't seem to think so, nor do I. Ng5 or Bg5 is just too unpleasant a move/threat in many lines.

As to the question, whether ... h6 introduces some really independent line, there is a little bit I want to add: 9... h6 10. h3 Be6 seems to have been played every now and then in the past century, but it enjoys very little popularity today.

Games of interest might be: Wedberg-Benjamin 1990, Geller-Romanishin, 1977 and Ehlvest-Kortschnoi, 1988. In addition perhaps some games of GM Art Bisguier, and more recently IM(?) Richard Biolek in 2002 to 2004. (Except of the last player, all this material is quite dated. Results are mixed, as always.) Interesting stuff, nevertheless. Black obviously wants to provoke g2-g4 before retreating his Nf5-e7 and Be6-d7, both only if necessary. Sometimes, white gets a free g2-g4 compared to what we see after 9... Ld7 10.h3 h6. (That could very well explain why the system is not used at top level today.) Apart from that, motifs and manoevers are very similar, I observed.

Regards, papageno.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
IMJohnCox
God Member
*****
Offline


I Love ChessPublishing!

Posts: 1547
Location: London
Joined: 01/28/06
Gender: Male
Re: Berlin - early 9...h6
Reply #4 - 12/19/08 at 08:52:36
Post Tools
Papageno, thanks for your interest in my book.

I did mean to say somewhere why I didn't talk about 9...h6 much; perhaps I didn't.

You're right that it's one of the most popular moves, but so far as I could see it doesn't lead to independent positions. The Berlin is very difficult to classify by moves because both sides have such a wide choice at every turn, but as you know I divided it into ...Be7 plans, ...Bd7 plans or ...Ne7 plans (or some other specific plans with ...b6, ...early ...a5 or 9..Be6). As far as I can see there is no worthwhile plan starting with 9...h6 that doesn't lead into one of the other plans. That's why I didn't treat it independently.

As emary says, most often it's a way of reachng the 9...Ne7 set-up, which has good and bad points. You prevent 9...Ne7 10 Nd4 (games 1-3) or Bg5 (games 8 and 9, I think). But you prevent yourself playing 10...Bg4 or ..Bf5, which is a popular option after 10 b3, for example.

If you want to play ...Bd7 systems then people still sometimes play 9....h6. It stops the Hungarian line which Khalifman recommends (10 Rd1 Kc8 11 Ng5). On the other hand if White plays 10 Rd1+ you can't go 10...Bd7 because of g4 and e6, so you have to go 10...Ke8, and now you have to play ...Ne7 systems, albeit a nice version of them since Rd1 restricts White's choices. I don't know what drawbacks the early ...h6 might have if White plays other systems; I'm afraid I haven't considered that. I deliberately didn't get into transpositional move orders because they are subtle, difficult and personal to the likes and dislikes of the player, and because once you start you never stop.

If you're going to play ...Be7 then ...h6 is usually a waste of time because you don't need to cover g5 anyway. I suppose if you were particularly terrified of Bg5 systems and particularly confident against other setups you might want to try it, but no strong ..Be7 expert does it that way.

It's definitely not a question of a concrete line throwing 9...h6 into doubt, at least as far as I know. Just my decision on how to present the material.

Hope that helps.

I have been vaguely meaning to post a thread about the Wang-Yue Berlin meeting its recent Waterloo in Jakovenko-WY, Elista, and also about Radjabov-Carlsen from Thessalonika, but I haven't got round to it. Anyway, if anyone is interested in the Berlin then those were interesting games, and if anyone cares to post a thread discussing them I'll try and contribute (Shirov-Naiditsch from Dresden was also terrific).
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
emary
Full Member
***
Offline


I Love ChessPublishing!

Posts: 116
Joined: 07/26/08
Re: Berlin - early 9...h6
Reply #3 - 12/18/08 at 16:23:53
Post Tools
Quote:
Edit: It's all about 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Nxe4 5. d4 Nd6 6. Bxc6 dxc6 7. dxe5 Nf5 8. Qxd8+ Kxd8 9. Nc3)


Hello Papageno!

Maybe you should change the name of the thread into something like this:

John Cox: Berlin Wall: Why is  9...h6  not covered ?!


to have a better chance that John Cox  answers your question   

My point of view: 
As a waiting move 9...h6 makes little sense 
because of White's counter waiting move 10.h3
which is more constructive then 9...h6,
because  there is the danger that black has to play h5 later with a loss of tempo,
while 10.h3 prepares  g4 at least.

I decided to study the Ne7-system first and in this system
9...h6 is at least less flexible than 9...Ne7:   
1) It keeps black's control of d4, but according to Cox black only prevents the white mistake 10.Nd4? this way.
2) 9...h6  prevents 10.Bg5 too. Cox treated the Bg5 idea under the move order
9.Nc3 Ne7 10.h3 Ng6 11.Bg5+ Ke8 and
suggests to play 10...h6 first if you are afraid of 11.Bg5.
I think 9...Ne7 10.Bg5 can be countered by h6
but I have not yet found something about 10.Bg5  in the notes of Cox.

After studying Cox' treatment of your pet system in detail  you certainly can decide if it makes sense for you to play 9...h6.   

  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Papageno
Senior Member
****
Offline


FM

Posts: 299
Location: Germany
Joined: 06/12/08
Gender: Male
Re: Berlin - early 9...h6
Reply #2 - 12/17/08 at 22:40:33
Post Tools
Sure, no doubt that Black can do without 9... h6. (E.g. with ...Ne7. I mentioned a couple of other moves.) But that was not my point.

Instead, is there any refutation of this move, so that Cox has any reason not to treat it? Of course, there is some decline in popularity recently for 9...h6 since say Kramnik himself played it more that once e.g. in 2002 and 2005. But why? Still interested in some concrete line.

Regards, papageno.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
emary
Full Member
***
Offline


I Love ChessPublishing!

Posts: 116
Joined: 07/26/08
Re: Berlin - early 9...h6
Reply #1 - 12/17/08 at 20:17:35
Post Tools
After 9...Ne7 10.Nd4 was thought to be dangerous  and this is Khalifman's recommendation.
An important idea of 9...h6 is to control d4 one more move.
Cox tells us that 9...Ne7 10.Nd4 is nothing for white, therefore he prefers 9...Ne7 often followed by Ng6 and maybe later  by h6. See games 1-3 in chapter 4.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Papageno
Senior Member
****
Offline


FM

Posts: 299
Location: Germany
Joined: 06/12/08
Gender: Male
Berlin - early 9...h6
12/17/08 at 18:04:27
Post Tools
Just browsing through Cox: Berlin Wall, I realize that he deals with lots of 9th move alternative for Black, just to mention 9...Ne7 (with and without Ng6 in the next move) , 9...Bd7, 9...Be7 and 9...Ke8 (followed by a7-a5-a4!?). Even  9...Be6 is dealt with, amongst the more dubious continuations

However, 9... h6 seems not to be discussed at all, as far as I unterstand. Nor is explained why this move is irrelevant... After all, 9...h6 is among the most popular moves in the position. (In fact, it is the move I have seen most often, when I play the Berlin with the white pieces.) Admittedly, there are a few remarks by Cox scattered over the book: On the side, the move ...h6 is often played soon and quite useful. On the other side, he remarks that late Tony Miles almost never employed it, seeing it as a loss of tempo. Black might need to play h5-h7 in one move, etc.

So, what's the current verdict on this move 9...h6? Which reason (or maybe a concrete line) put it out of use? Did perhaps Khalifman refute it?

IMHO, Black could well consider playing 9...h6 10.h3 and then continue with his usual plans like 10... Bd7 or Ne7 or even 10... Be6. Any opinions?

(Edit: It's all about 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Nxe4 5. d4 Nd6 6. Bxc6 dxc6 7. dxe5 Nf5 8. Qxd8+ Kxd8 9. Nc3)
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Page Index Toggle Pages: 1 [2] 
Topic Tools
Bookmarks: del.icio.us Digg Facebook Google Google+ Linked in reddit StumbleUpon Twitter Yahoo