World Cup Brussels, 1988

**
1.Nf3
Nf6
2.c4
c5
3.Nc3
Nc6
4.d4**

One of the most popular symmetrical systems in the English Opening. It can be reached after another order of moves - 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.Nf3 - if White does not want to start a discussion on the Modern Benoni (3.d5). Therefore in theory this system is sometimes called "Anti-Benoni".

4...cxd4
5.Nxd4
e6
6.g3
Qb6

A more popular move than the immediate
6...Bc5
; 6...Be7
; 6...Bb4
; and 6...a6
are seen only rarely.
In this position there are three paths for White: the not too promising retreat of the knight ;
6...Qb6
7.Nc2
the modest but venomous reply 7.Nb3, to which this and the following game are
devoted, and the active thrust 7.Ndb5 which is discussed in the game placed
immediately after these two.

7.Nb3
d5

Nowadays
7...Ne5 is recognised as more reliable and is examined in the next game. Also played are;
7...Bb4
;
7...Be7
; and
7...d6
However, for a long time, at least in those years, the counterattack in the
centre was considered the most effective way. Black sacrifices a pawn, but
taking it means handing over a serious initiative to the opponent.

8.cxd5
Nxd5
9.Nxd5

Now arises a typical position with an isolated pawn. Black's pieces have a fair amount of freedom, and I had to grow quite a bit older before exploiting the pluses of my position. In the encounter G. Kasparov - A. Karpov (Moscow 1984, World Championship Match, 24th Game) there followed
9.Bg2
Nxc3
10.bxc3
a variation for those who do not like to fight against an isolated pawn. I preferred 10...Be7
* ( *Now in reply to to *10...e5
*White could centralise his knight *11.Nd2
Qc7
12.Nc4
Be7
13.Ne3
Be6
14.0-0
0-0
15.c4
Bc5
16.Nd5
Qd7
17.Bb2
Rac8
18.Qd3
*1/2-1/2 Tal,M -Ivanovic,B /Niksic 1983. True, he has wasted too much time and the chances of the sides here are approximately equal.
*) *and after 11.0-0
0-0
* ( *In any case in the next four games of the same match, in the 26th, I decided in favour of *
11...e5
*(instead of 11....0-0). Play continued *12.Be3
Qc7
13.Nc5
0-0
14.Qa4
Bxc5
15.Bxc5
Rd8
16.Rfd1
Be6
17.h3
Rxd1+
18.Rxd1
Rd8
19.Rxd8+
Qxd8
*White has a minimal advantage, but Kasparov decided to take the pawn, and after *20.Bxa7
Qa8!
21.Bxc6
bxc6
22.Kh2
h5
23.Qa5
f6
*again followed an agreed draw - there are opposite coloured bishops, and the pawn has no significance.*) *12.Be3
Qc7
13.Nd4
Rd8
14.Qa4
* ( *For those who like thrills we can recommend the queen sacrifice *
14.Nxc6!?
Rxd1
15.Nxe7+
Qxe7
16.Rfxd1
g6
17.Rab1
e5
18.Rb5!
*White retains the initiative with a material balance.( Adorjan,A -Zysk,R Dortmund 1984)*) *14...Bd7
15.Nxc6
Bxc6
16.Bxc6
bxc6
17.c4
we agreed a draw. However 17.Rab1 creates some pressure on the queenside.
In our first match Kasparov no longer returned to the English Opening. Thus it was possible to draw the conclusion that the move 9.Bg2 was "neutralised" and the exchange 9.Nxd5 is White, only chance of fighting for the initiative.

9...exd5
10.Bg2

Too dangerous is 10.Qxd5
Be6
11.Qe4
Bb4+
12.Bd2
0-0!

10...Be6!

For that time - a new move. Previously
10...Bb4+
followed automatically here. However, the premature exchange of dark-squared bishops, with an "isolani" favours White. After 11.Bd2
Bg4
* ( *the move *11...a5
*only increases Black's woes: to the weak pawn is added a second weakness - a5)*) *12.0-0
Rd8
13.Bxb4
Qxb4
14.Qc2
0-0
15.Rfd1
White threatens a doubling of rooks on the d-file followed by an exchange of queens.
In the game K. Spraggett - M. Chandler (Commonwealth Championship 1985) play continued
15...Qc4
16.Rd2
Rfe8
17.e3
g6
18.h3
* ( *Also quite good is *18.Rc1!
*not driving the bishop to f5, for example *18...Ne5?
19.Rxd5!
Qa6
( 19...Qxc2?
20.Rxc2
Nf3+
21.Bxf3
Bxf3
22.Rxd8
Rxd8
23.Nd4
followed by Rc7) 20.Rxd8
Rxd8
21.h3
and there is insufficient compensation for the pawn. (Smejkal,J -Cebalo,M Yugoslavia 1986)) *18...Bf5
19.Qd1
Be4
20.Rc1
Qb4
21.Nd4!
White has a noticeable advantage, while the exchanging operation 21...Bxg2
22.Kxg2
Nxd4
23.Rxd4
Qxb2
24.Rb1
Qc3
* ( 24...Qxa2??
25.Ra4!
) *25.Rxb7
will not rid Black of his difficulties.

11.0-0

Again it is too dangerous to capture on d5: 11.Bxd5?
Bb4+
12.Kf1
Rd8.

11...Rd8
12.Bg5!

By provoking f7-f6, White obtains the better chances. However, he still needs to find the right deployment of his pieces.

12...f6
13.Bd2

13.Be3
suggests itself, but after 13...d4
14.Bxc6+
bxc6
15.Nxd4?
c5
16.Qa4+
Bd7
Black has the upper hand.
Possible, however, is; 13.Bf4
Be7
14.Qd3
0-0
15.Rfd1
and if now 15...g5?
then 16.Qe3
Qxe3
17.Bxe3
with advantage to White.

13...Be7

Follows the simple
13...Bb4
14.Rc1
capturing the c5 square. In the event of;
13...a5?!
already strong is 14.Be3!?
d4
15.Bxc6+
bxc6
16.Nxd4
Bc5
* ( *on *16...Bh3
*possible is *17.Qa4!?
*distinct from variations pointed out in the previous annotation, no good is*; 16...c5?
17.Qa4+
Bd7
18.Qb3!
*with an obvious advantage for White*) *17.Nxe6
Rxd1
18.Raxd1
Bxe3
19.Rd8+
Ke7
* ( 19...Qxd8
20.Nxd8
Kxd8
21.fxe3
Kc7
22.Rf5
Ra8
23.e4
) *20.Rxh8
Bxf2+
* ( 20...Kxe6
21.Re8+
) *21.Rxf2
Kxe6
22.Rxh7
Qxb2
23.Rxg7
Qxa2
24.h4
]

14.Bc3!
0-0

Again 14...d4?!
is insufficient for equality 15.Bxc6+
bxc6
* ( 15...Qxc6
16.Nxd4
Qc4
17.e3
Bh3?
18.Qh5+
) *16.Ba5
Bxb3
17.Qd2!

15.Nd4
Nxd4
16.Qxd4
Bc5
17.Qd2
Qd6
18.b4
Bb6
19.Bd4
Bf5
20.Rac1
Be4
21.Bh3
Rfe8
22.Rfd1
Re7
23.a3
Kf8
24.Qb2
Rc7
25.Rxc7
Qxc7
26.Rd2
Rd6
27.Bg2
Re6
28.e3
Ke7
29.h4
a6?!

Despite the series of exchanges, the isolated pawn still paralyses Black's activity. However, now he misses the possibility of achieving virtually full equality: 29...Bxg2
30.Kxg2
Re4
31.Rc2
* ( *not at all dangerous for Black is *31.Bxb6
Qxb6
32.Rxd5
Qc6
33.Qa2
Re5
34.e4
Rxe4
35.Rc5
Re2+
36.Rxc6
Rxa2
37.Rc7+
Kf8
38.Rxb7
Rxa3
) *31...Qd6.

30.Bxb6
Qxb6
31.Rd1
Qc7
32.Qd4
Qc4
33.Qa7
Qc7
34.Rd4
Kf7?

Correct was 34...Bxg2
35.Kxg2
Rd6
with a probable draw. However, Korchnoi could not stand the tension and in the end his "isolani"
falls.

35.Rxd5!
Bxg2

Of course, no better is 35...Bxd5
36.Bxd5
etc.

36.Kxg2
Qc6
37.Qc5

Transferring to a winning rook endgame. Of course, no good is 37.e4?!
Rxe4
38.Rc5
Qd7
39.Qb8
Re7
with a draw.

37...Qxc5
38.Rxc5

The rest is clear. White has an extra pawn which he easily realises.

38...Re7
39.Kf3
Ke6
40.Ke4
Kd6+
41.Kd4
Kd7
42.g4
Re8
43.e4
b6
44.Rd5+
Ke7
45.e5
Rf8
46.Rd6
b5
47.Rxa6
fxe5+
48.Kxe5
Rxf2
49.Ra7+
Kf8
50.h5
Rf3
51.Kd4
Rf4+
52.Kc5
Rxg4
53.Kxb5
Rg5+
54.Kc6
Rxh5
55.b5
Rh6+
56.Kc7
Rh3
57.b6
Ke7
58.b7
Rc3+
59.Kb6
Rb3+
60.Kc6

**1-0**