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  • QUALITY CHESS ::;

  • The Alterlllan Gantbit Guide

    \Wj.bh9

    By

    Boris Alterman

    Quality Chess www.qualitychess.co.uk

  • First English edition 2010 by Quality Chess UK LLP

    Copyright © 2010 Boris Alterman and Quality Chess

    The Alterman Gambit Guide -White Gambits All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored

    in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, electrostatic, magnetic tape, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior

    permission of the publisher.

    ISBN 978-1-906552-53-4

    All sales or enquiries should be directed to Quality Chess UK LLP, 20 Balvie Road, Milngavie, Glasgow G62 7TA, United Kingdom

    Tel: +44 (0)1412276771 e-mail: info@qualitychess.co.uk website: www.qualitychess.co.uk

    Distributed in US and Canada by SCB Distributors, Gardena, California, US www.scbdistributors.com

    Distributed in Rest of the World by Quality Chess UK LLP through Sunrise Handicrafts, Smyczkowa 4/98, 20-844 Lublin, Poland

    Typeset: Jacob Aagaard Proofreading: Colin McNab

    Editing: John Shaw and Jacob Aagaard Cover design: Adamson Design

    Printed in Estonia by TaBinna Raamatutriikikoja LLC

  • Contents Acknowledgments, Bibliography & Key to symbols used Foreword by the Author

    1 The Danish Gambit 2 The Urusov Gambit 3 The Philidor 4 The Cochrane Gambit 5 The Morphy Attack 6 The Max Lange Attack 7 The Evans Gambit 8 The Panov Attack 9 The Morra Gambit 10 The Milner-Barry Gambit

    Games Index Variations Index

    4 5

    7 45 79

    117 159 203 231 303 367 409

    443 445

  • Acknowledgments I would like to offer my respect and thanks to the people without whom this book would never have existed.

    The book is in memory of my first chess coach, Soviet Master Vitaly Appolonovich Marchenko, who nurtured my chess talent.

    Thank you to: Honored coach of Ukraine, Alexander Naumovich Vaisman, for being not only my chess coach for

    many years but also my friend, adviser and patron. My close friends: Zohar Olpiner, Shmuel Fridman, Moty Bank, Aviv Friedman, Shay Bushinsky,

    Watson Tay, Antonio Palma and Harvey Mandell for providing extremely useful comments and help with the project.

    My student Kelvin Wee for his invaluable help. My classmate Oleg Aliferov for supporting the project. My mother Dora, sister Inna, my wife Luba and my children Ariela, Lior-Israel and Ben-Osher for

    their love, devotion, encouragement and amazing support throughout my chess career. Special thanks to Jacob and John of Quality Chess for their startling help with my first chess book.

    Bibliography Capablanca - Chess Fundamentals Estrin - Gambits Kasparov - My Chess Predecessors Volumes 1-5 Koblentz - Chess Strategy Lessons (Russian edition) Neishtadt - Catastrophe in the Opening, Win in the Opening, Wilhelm Steinitz Nimzowitsch - My System Razuvaev & Murakhveri - Akiba Rubinstein Reti - Modern Ideas in Chess Roizman - Chess Miniatures - 400 combination games Suetin - How to play the Opening (Russian edition)

    Key to symbols used + White is slightly better a weak move = ; Black is slightly better ?? a blunder ± White is better a good move + Black is better !! an excellent move +- White has a decisive advantage !? a move worth considering -+ Black has a decisive advantage ?! a move of doubtful value

    equality # mate CD with compensation

    +± with counterplay CD unclear

  • Introduction My relationship with the 64 squares began at an early stage in life. I first learned to play checkers at the age of 3, and when I became quite good at it, my father decided to teach me a more complicated game. Chess was the most natural choice. The first lessons were very tough for me, but I eventually picked up the most important principles of the game.

    At the age of 10 I was going to join a football team until surgery on my appendix put an end to that idea. With no better option, I joined the ''Avangard'' chess club in my home town of Voroshilovgrad (which is called Lugansk nowadays) one of the largest towns in the east of the Ukraine.

    Students in my group had to memorize the most brilliant tactical examples from the games of Morphy, Anderssen and other great players, and then show them in class to our coach, Master of Sport Vitaly Appolonovich Marchenko. This was a useful start to my life in chess, as to become successful we must develop our tactical skills. As the old saying has it: Chess is 99% tactics. You may come up with a deep strategic idea, but your opponent will punish you if you make just one tactical slip.

    Our coach taught us to play aggressively and energetically, and not to fear sacrificing material for an attack. His lessons were so instructive and interesting that I did not want to miss a single session, even when I was sick with fever. It will be no surprise that as a young player I loved to play gambit systems.

    A few years later, when I was quite a strong player, I started to play solid but rather passive lines as White. I was extremely lucky to be able to join the famous Botvinnik-Kasparov chess school when it started in 1986. After the very first session Kasparov wrote in my homework: "Improve your White opening repertoire; play aggressively." This valuable judgment from a great player helped me a lot to improve my chess.

    Later, while reading the great books of Grandmaster Richard Reti, I found the following expression which every chess player and instructor should note: ''A knowledge of tactics is the foundation of positional play. This is a rule which has stood its test in chess history and one which we cannot impress forcibly enough upon the young chess player. A beginner should avoid the Queen's Gambit and French Defense and play open games instead! While he may not win as many games at first, he will in the long run be amply compensated by acquiring a thorough knowledge of the game."

    Why do I recommend that the reader studies aggressive and attacking openings? After reading Reti's views, the reasoning should be clear. When you play gambit openings you quickly learn the most important principles of opening strategy: the importance of development, the timing of combinations, the meaning of the initiative, utilizing a lead in development, and other important issues.

    Instead, some club players try to memorize, for example, the best games played in the Sicilian by Kasparov, Anand or Topalov, but this is just a waste of time and energy. When you try to make use of what you have memorized, then after the first move that was not in your home preparation you will lose your way and probably the game.

    Let me share an example from my own tournament experience. Once, when I was already a

  • 6 The Alterman Gambit Guide

    strong grandmaster, I wanted to study a new opening to play in the 1998 Olympiad in Elista. I was short of time, and my plan was to memorize the main line and some side variations in the opening I had chosen. A few weeks later I had the chance to show the world my fine preparation. Playing a new (for me!) line in the King's Indian Defense, I mixed up the move order and found myself in a tough position after just 15 moves and lost almost without a fight! This was a very unpleasant lesson for me. The conclusion from this interesting story - when you learn a chess opening, you should study ideas not just moves!

    When I started to give lessons I realized that there were few books which could help players to progress from Beginner to Intermediate and Advanced level. You could try studying the great books of Mark Dvoretsky, however these books target mostly Master-level players (2200 and up). Most of the books I looked at started with "How to" then continued "Win in chess", "Trap your opponent", "Beat the Sicilian" (or Ruy Lopez, French or whatever). However, these books never explained the basics of opening principles, which are critical for moving from Beginner- Intermediate level to Advanced.

    As I gained more coaching experience I saw that, at the Beginner and Intermediate level, playing the opening correctly brings many dividends. Many of the games at that level are decided because one of the players (or both!) does not follow the basic opening principles. The players: Do not fight for the center, keep playing with the same piece, move the queen too early in the opening, leave the king in the center, try to win material instead of developing, and so on.

    This gave me the idea of developing a course of lectures on the Internet Chess Club called "Gambit Guide". For this reason I also practiced the gambits in my ICC blitz and Simultaneous events. By playing gambits I had the chance to demonstrate the most important ideas behind the opening moves and explain the purpose of playing this or that move. Many of the games in this book were played between me and ICC members (some of them not so highly rated!) and these games have the important purpose of showing the most typical opening mistakes and how to punish them.

    Finally, after editing and combining a lot of material, the course has been transformed into this book, which I hope will help the readers become more familiar with the most important opening and positional principles, teach about tactics and typical combinations in the opening, as well as explaining how to evaluate a position and how to study the principles of attack.

    I suggest that the readers can also use this book as a starting point in build