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Opening Innovations in this Pandemic

Position arising from 2 knights opening. White to play. Other than 4.d4 and 4.Bb5 what else comes to your mind?

This position has arisen from topical line of scotch variation. White to play. What would you play here?


White to play.what will you play?

This has arisen from 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nc3 d5 3.Bf4.Black’s last move was Bb4-e7.What would you play here as white?


Black’s last move was Ne4-d2.How will you recapture the knight?


Quite a famous and ever trending opening. Black has many moves here.Which crazy move comes to your mind?


This is from topical line of catalan variation.What will you play here as white?

We shall now look at the solutions and which among these has certain resemblance of classical players.

Carlsen played h3 here.I didn’t know much about this move and then when I looked at the database,I found that few top level players like Short,Giri,Yu yangyi has already played it in rapid/Blitz. This move has a good surprise value especially in shorter time controls as white doesn’t commit anything and just plays a useful move. White can continue accordingly by seeing how black responds.My 5 candidate choices of former greats who could have played this move.
World champions: Lasker,capablanca,Smyslov,Euwe,Spassky
Other Top players: Schlechter,Zukertort,Rubinstein,Sultan Khan,Reti


Position after 9.0-0-0. Between Carlsen-Nakamura. If Black plays Bc3 then 10.bc3 Qc3 11.Bd4 Qf3 12.gf3 f6 13.Rg1 followed by 14.f4 with an initiative.
My top 5 candidate choices
 World champions: Alekhine,Botvinnik,Tal,Fischer,Spassky
Other top players: Morphy,Spielmann,Bogoljubow,Polugaevsky,Keres

Position after 4.h4 between carlsen-Svidler. Many might wonder how did this position occur with white to play. Well, Carlsen played 1.c3 and then got this position! In general pushing the ‘h’pawn is in the spirit of ‘Alpha Zero’. However even computers may not play this here unless they are programmed to play! 

Difficult to guess who could have played like this. However I will try guessing .

My top 5 candidate choices.
World champions: Steinitz,Alekhine,Tal,Fischer,Spassky
Other greats:   Paulsen,Blackburne, Speelman,Tartokower, Larsen


Position after 7.Ng1 between Carlsen-Xiong.White’s  idea is to place his Bishop on d3 and postpone the development of the knight so that he keeps the option open for  playing g4.
My 5 candidate choices
World champions: Steinitz,Alekhine,Capablanca,Smyslov,Petrosian
Other greats: Nimzowitsch,Bronstein,Gligoric,Reti,Flohr


Position after 12.Qd2 between Carlsen-Xiong.White now transfers the queen to ‘g’ file to create attacking chances.
My top 5 candidate choices
World champions: Alekhine,Tal,Botvinnik,Fischer,Spassky
Other greats: Chigorin,Marshall,Nezhmetdinov,Stein,Keres


Position after 3..h5 between Ding Liren-CarlsenMy candidate choices will be same as diagram 3

Position after 8.h4 between Dubov-Ding Liren. White basically waits to see how black continues.After 8..Nbd7,Dubov played 9.Nc3 and later went on to win the game.

My 5 candidate choices

World champions: Botvinnik,Alekhine,Tal,Spassky,Fischer
Other greats: Blackburne,Stein,Larsen,Keres, Nezhmetdinov 

I had doubts about the style of few players and I immediately Without any hesitations clarified with Kidambi Anna and would like to thank him for sharing his thoughtssmiley

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