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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) Chessable Botvinnik English (Read 6443 times)
TonyRo
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #15 - 04/08/21 at 15:53:15
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Michael Ayton wrote on 04/02/21 at 16:20:35:
If Black goes for a KID setup with ...g6/..d6/...Nf6 I still prefer to meet it with a system Tony Kosten has commended on here, namely e3/Nge2 intending d2-d4, which scores well in my database.

Can you link me to this reference? I have always been interested in this system but never tried it out myself.
  
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Bulldog
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #14 - 04/08/21 at 07:25:38
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I've started looking at this more thoroughly -- only through chapter 3 -- but one line that I've really been puzzling over is in the c5 section:

1. c4 c5
2. g3 Nc6
3. Bg2 g6
4. Nc3 Bg7
5. e4 d6
6. Nge2 Nf6
7. d3 0-0
8. 0-0 Rb8
9. h3 a6
10. a4 Nd7
11. Be3 Nd4
12. Rb1 b6

Here the book gives the line 13. b4 Bb7 14. Qd2 e6 15. Bh6, but this simply loses a pawn to 15...Bxh6 16. Qxh6 Nxe2+ 17. Nxe2 cxb4 18. Rxb4 Nc5 19. Qe3 a5 when the rook must retreat and the a-pawn falls.

I spent quite a while trying to find any play for White here and the best I could come up with was an (unsound) idea of pushing the h-pawn:

13. h4!? Bb7
14. h5 gxh5
15. Nf4 h4!
16. Nh5 Nf6
17. Nxg7 Kxg7
18. Ne2 Nxe2+
19. Qxe2 hxg3
20. fxg3 Kh8
21. Bg5 Nd7
22. Bh6 Rg8
23. Rxf7

The final position is better for Black but at least there is interesting, active play for White and some opportunities for Black to screw up.

However I think the line in general may just be better for Black as the knight gets lodged into d4 and it's impossible to remove without either cxb4 or cxd4, at which point the Black knight will (possibly after ...a5) make its way to c5 and hit the two weakest pawns on the board, a4 and d3.


There are also some problems with the lines where Black plays e5+c5 with Nf6.  The book recommends pushing f4, but after exf4 Nxf4 it is just an equal position:

1. c4 Nf6
2. g3 g6
3. Bg2 Bg7
4. Nc3 d6
5. e4 e5
6. Nge2 0-0
7. 0-0 c5
8. d3 Nc6
9. h3 Be6
10. f4 exf4

and I don't see any reason to believe White is better.  Fortunately I think the Rb1+b4 idea works well here, for instance

10. Rb1 Qd7
11. Kh2 Nd4
12. b4 b6
13. bxc5 bxc5
14. Nxd4 cxd4
15. Nd5 Bxd5
16. cxd5
and I can believe White holding a slight edge here since he will be able to add h4+Bh3 to the queenside.  But it is probably pretty tough to win.
  
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #13 - 04/03/21 at 16:16:03
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an ordinary chessplayer wrote on 04/02/21 at 15:40:30:
To my mind more nitty-gritty is more theoretical not less. Smiley  I always prefer more variations and fewer words, so I'm not sure if I should be the one to recommend books for you.


My dream chess book would be focused mostly on the pawn structures (or "fragments"), the major decisions that both players must make, the common strategies used by both sides and how to handle them, and a gallery of common tactical and attacking patterns.  And only then delve into the theory.

For instance in the Botvinnik English, you play Nd5, Black captures and you have the choice of cxd5 or exd5.  This is one of the major decisions White must make and I would like to see a solid section explaining the impact of each recapture and the conditions under which they are good/bad, to help guide players in making this decision.  This is how you truly "master" an opening, not just memorizing cxd5 in this line, exd5 in that one.

The book does a good job of this in a few places, it repeatedly highlights how after Nd4 you should play Rb1/b4 to yank away the defending c5-pawn, and draws the reader's attention to the Bxh3/Nf3+ tactic.  But I would like to see things like this more explicitly laid out.

Kosten's book does a good job of this in many places as he explains some common pawn structures and the features of those pawn structures, common tactical patterns, and the strategies for both sides.  My guess is that most people who read Kosten's book remember all that stuff and don't remember the theory as much.
  
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Michael Ayton
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #12 - 04/02/21 at 16:20:35
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I bought myself the book for Christmas. I still haven't had time to go through it really properly, but I do have some thoughts.

In a sense I possibly know what Bulldog means, since it does look as though there's often more emphasis on kingside action than on centre-transformation strategy. Maybe I'm being over-schematic but I always thought of the latter as 'the' main strategic idea behind the Botvinnik (against ...e5): specifically, exf5 followed by d3-d4 changing the structure to White's advantage. Maybe the emphasis, such as it is, on kingside play reflects Williams' style?

The book's upholding of the Botvinnik formation against '...c5 without ...e5' setups from Black did make me wonder whether theory had changed its mind on this at all, since the Botvinnik against ...c5 has often been regarded as solid but less impressive than against ...e5. If there's any new thinking here the book doesn't mention it. If Black goes for a KID setup with ...g6/..d6/...Nf6 I still prefer to meet it with a system Tony Kosten has commended on here, namely e3/Nge2 intending d2-d4, which scores well in my database. You can play this against a KID formation whatever, I guess (Ghaem Maghami seems to be the main specialist); if you know your opponent will play the KID, you can even play d4 on move one! Cheesy

All this said, I do think AOC's point is relevant here -- I find the book's organisation rather confusing, but a lot of lines do receive some pretty thorough coverage, even if (inevitably given the target readership) not on the Marin scale.
  
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an ordinary chessplayer
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #11 - 04/02/21 at 15:40:30
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Bulldog wrote on 04/02/21 at 00:16:38:
I feel like there's a lot of potential for a more nitty-gritty Botvinnik book that's less theoretical and more about principles and rules.

To my mind more nitty-gritty is more theoretical not less. Smiley  I always prefer more variations and fewer words, so I'm not sure if I should be the one to recommend books for you. But you may be interested in reading recommendations by others:
  
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #10 - 04/02/21 at 00:16:38
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I purchased this and it is OK but I don't feel like I'm coming away with a mastery of all the different gears and levers of the Botvinnik.  It's a reasonable opening book but I feel like there's a lot of potential for a more nitty-gritty Botvinnik book that's less theoretical and more about principles and rules.  The book has a short section at the beginning with a handful of annotated games that goes over more general principles.  Most of the games involve waiting for Black to make some mistake and then launching into a kingside attack with f4-f5, h3, g4, Ng3, h4, g5.

But playing the Botvinnik System at a high level, you will rarely get such a kingside attack, instead most of the games are going to revolve around the tension in the center and timing with the central and queenside pawn breaks.  I've also found that it's generally pretty easy for Black to lock up the kingside and reach a closed position where the ...b5 break on the queenside is all that's left.

I am also curious what other coverage there is of the "Botvinnik System" against ...c5 setups (actually a c4 Sicilian).  I poked around a little and couldn't find any other books that cover this line in much depth at all, but it is actually very interesting.  In particular, if you want to play the Botvinnik as a general repertoire against King's Indian setups, you have to be prepared for folks to play a move order delaying ...e5 in which case they can play ...c5 once you play e4.

I haven't tackled Marin yet so maybe he covers these Botvinnik systems in more depth?  Or does he only cover the system against e5/Nc6 as Kosten does?
  
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MW
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #9 - 12/11/20 at 02:38:44
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For those of us living down-under it is also now available through Book Depository...I've been advised by them that my copy is on the way!!
  
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TD
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #8 - 12/08/20 at 20:20:19
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Michael Ayton wrote on 12/08/20 at 20:07:44:
Anyone got this book and can comment on it? (But I'm confused. Amazon [UK] is saying it hasn't yet been released and can be pre-ordered, while also advertising a second-hand copy!)

In the Netherlands it is available coming saturday, https://www.debestezet.nl/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=4759
and in Germany next tuesday, https://www.schachversand.de/the-iron-english.html
  
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Michael Ayton
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #7 - 12/08/20 at 20:07:44
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Anyone got this book and can comment on it? (But I'm confused. Amazon [UK] is saying it hasn't yet been released and can be pre-ordered, while also advertising a second-hand copy!)

Interesting that he's recommending the Botvinnik set-up after ...c5 (without ...e5). That's often been thought not as impressive as after ...e5 (while still being perfectly respectable of course). Has anything changed here, I wonder?
  
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TD
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #6 - 11/02/20 at 08:02:17
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #5 - 10/28/20 at 14:11:28
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That is very good news - I find it helpful to have a book that goes with such course
  
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MW
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #4 - 10/27/20 at 19:19:36
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I see Everyman are publishing this in book format under the title "Opening Repertoire The Iron English" due out November...
  
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MW
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #3 - 10/01/20 at 19:03:23
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TopNotch wrote on 10/01/20 at 16:05:04:
MW wrote on 09/28/20 at 22:21:25:
This question has also been asked in the discussion section of the Chessable course.....seems that 2 e4 is the recommendation against both 1...c6 and 1....e6. 


Is that the recommendation against 1...c5 as well, and if not why not. Wink



No they go for regular g3 set-ups against the symmetrical....as for why, they have just recorded a Q & A on Chess 24 where they cover their reasoning for selecting 2 e4 against 1...e6 and 1...c6. If you are not a Chess 24 member you can still watch the session from the achieves.
  
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #2 - 10/01/20 at 16:05:04
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MW wrote on 09/28/20 at 22:21:25:
This question has also been asked in the discussion section of the Chessable course.....seems that 2 e4 is the recommendation against both 1...c6 and 1....e6. 


Is that the recommendation against 1...c5 as well, and if not why not. Wink
  

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MW
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Re: Chessable Botvinnik English
Reply #1 - 09/28/20 at 22:21:25
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This question has also been asked in the discussion section of the Chessable course.....seems that 2 e4 is the recommendation against both 1...c6 and 1....e6.
  
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