Tales of the Unexpected: dealing with Unorthodox Openings

"All openings offer good winning chances in amateur play" -- LOMBARDY.

  I used to know a Henry who was known as H4 Stewart because of his inclination to 1.h4 as an opening move, and I'm sure it saved him a lot of time sweating over the latest line in the Sicilian Dragon. How should you reply to openings like this? If faced with 1.h4, or anything else unusual, just keep playing good chess - keep calm, keep developing, keep your eye on the centre, and keep your wits about you.

  Let's put a bit of detail alongside that.

Moller Attack

From  Mon Dec  2 13:33:20 1996
Subject: Re: Guioco Piano notes
To: (Andrew Lord)
Date: Mon, 2 Dec 1996 13:33:18 +0000 (GMT)

Hi Andrew

> I've just got addicted to chess 

Sympathy: there is no cure...

> I'm stuck on a problem with a Guiuco Piano line. I got as far 
> as:
> 1. e4 e5
> 2. Nf3 Nc6
> 3. Bc4 Bc5
> 4. c3 Nf6
> 5. d4 exd4
> 6. cxd4 Bb4+
> 7. Nc3 Nxe4
> 8. 0-0 BxN
> 9. d5

The Sicilian Defence

vogt - andersson (STEAN) [B84] minority attack in the Sicilian, Capa memorial 1975

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6

This is nearly always Black's fourth move in the Sicilian, to force the N on b1 in front of the c-pawn. Left alone, White may play c2-c4, stopping counterplay with d7-d5 or b7-b5, and removing danger on the c-file.

5. Nc3 e6 6. Be2 a6 7. f4 Qc7 8. O-O Be7 9. Kh1 Nc6 10. Be3 Nxd4 11. Qxd4 O-O 12. Rad1 b5

Book review: Attacking Repertoire - Gufeld

[This review first appeared in Westward Ho!]

An Opening Repertoire for the Attacking Player by Edward Gufeld, trans. Ken Neat. Pub. Cadogan 1996. 160pp. Index of variations and of complete games. [[sterling]]? ISBN 1 85744 196 6

A good old-fashioned opening repertoire book, with thoroughly modern lines. I think this book would be very useful for a strongish player with an attacking bent who struggles to get the sort of position they like - you may recall Spielmann's lament that

The Ulvestad Variation of the Two Knights' Defence

From Sat May 4 03:51:23 1996

Subject: The Dreaded Fried Liver attack ....

[Impertinent editorial note: I think the Fried Liver Attack should refer to only the line 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. Ng5 d5 5. exd5 Nxd5 6. Nxf7, but here my esteemed correspondent means the line with 4. Ng5 - Dr.Dave]

  In my quest at becoming a better player (USCF 1360) I was constantly faced with the Fried Liver attack as black. After losing


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