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  1. Chatard-Alekhine Attack (2 video series)
    $5.98
    The Chatard-Alekhine Attack in the Classical French Defense with 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Be7 5.e5 Nfd7 6.h4!? is a formidable weapon in the hands of an aggressive player - and only a few years ago, Alexander Morozevich used it to demolish French expert Viktor Korchnoi in just 20 moves! White sacrifices his h-pawn for an immensely dangerous initiative. This leads to the complex struggle, where White has rapid and easy development. Now, in this Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman looks at the dangerous Chatard-Alekhine Attack. Learn More
  2. Staunton Gambit - Dutch defense (2 video series)
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    GM Boris Alterman takes a look at the Staunton Gambit against the Dutch Defense with 1 d4 f5 2 e4!? Learn More
  3. Danish Gambit (2 video series)
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    The Dashing Danish explores the 19th-century Danish Gambit, first popularized by Danish player Severin From at the Paris tournament of 1867, with 1 e4 e5 2 d4 exd4 3 c3 dxc3 4 Bc4 cxb2 5 Bxb2 - an instant attack favored by swashbuckling masters such as Alekhine, Marshall, Blackburne, and Mieses. Learn More
  4. Fried Liver Attack (2 video series)
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    GM Boris Alterman explores the legendary Fried Liver Attack in the Two Knights Defense with 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bc4 Nf6 4 Ng5 d5 5 exd5 Nxd5 6 Nxf7!? The Two Knights Defense is one of the trickiest tactical openings around. If White initiates complications with the so-called Fried Liver Attack, play becomes extremely sharp and gambits and counter gambits abound. Anyone who enters the murky waters of the Fried Liver must be well prepared for the mind-boggling complications that ensue. Learn More
  5. Max Lange Attack (2 video series)
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    Some openings are so unbalanced that one false move can cost you the game. A prime example being the Max Lange Attack, one of the stormiest opening systems of the 19th century that was named after the German master of the same name, who first suggested it in 1854. And in this Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman takes a closer look at the out of vogue Max Lange with 1. e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.d4 exd4 5. 0-0 Bc5!? - a position that can be reached by a plethora of openings, such as the Two Knights Defense, Petroff's Defense, Scotch Gambit, Bishop's Opening, Center Game and Giuoco Piano. Learn More
  6. Milner-Barry Gambit  (2 video series)
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    The Milner-Barry Gambit (1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. e5 c5 4. c3 Nc6 5. Nf3 Qb6 6. Bd3) is very popular at club level, and one of the sharpest white weapons against the French Defense. It was invented by legendary World War II Enigma Code breaker Sir Stuart Milner-Barry, who always liked to play with a sense of adventure. In this Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman re-evaluates the Milner-Barry Gambit as a potent weapon for white - and especially for players who like to play actively. Learn More
  7. Latvian Gambit (2 video series)
    $5.98
    The Latvian Gambit with 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 f5!? is one of the most exciting and fascinating openings with a long and storied history in chess literature. The name was a tribute to the Latvian players, notably Karlis Betins (1867-1943), who analyzed it in the early part of the 20th century. Although it is almost impossible to find in the repertoire of a professional player, amateurs, correspondence players and online aficionados here at the ICC have long found the tactical labyrinth of the main lines to be highly appealing. And in this Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman puts the Latvian under the microscope. Learn More
  8. Froms Gambit  (2 video series)
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    The Bird's Opening with 1 f4 can take on the positional characteristics of a reversed Dutch Defense. But rather than that, Black has the sharp option of 1...e5!?, From's Gambit, named after the Danish player Severin From (1828-1895). White can then transpose into the King's Gambit with 2.e4. If he prefers to stay in the Bird's Opening, play can continue 2 fxe5 d6, where white must play very precisely to squelch Black's attacking chances. In this Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman looks at the From's Gambit as an ideal antidote to the Bird's Opening - and doubly so if black is a dedicated 1 e4 e5 player. Learn More
  9. Urusov Gambit (2 video series)
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    GM Boris Alterman explores the exciting Urusov Gambit in the Bishop's Opening with 1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 Nf6 3.d4!, a fertile training ground for those looking to improve their basic understanding of tactics. Documented by Ponziani in the 18th century, this gambit was first analyzed in 1857 by Russian aristocrat Prince Sergei Urusov, a close friend of the chess-playing literary icon Leo Tolstoy, and one of Russia's best players of his day. The gambit was deployed in a number of correspondence games between the two and mentioned in surviving letters in the Tolstoy collection, but alas the games themselves have been lost. Learn More
  10. Marshall Gambit (2 video series)
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    One of the world’s first Grandmasters, America’s Frank J. Marshall (1877-1944) left behind a lasting legacy to the chess world with his revered gambit against the Ruy Lopez:  the Marshall Attack with 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 a6 4 Ba4 Nf6 5 0-0 Be7 6 Re1 b5 7 Bb3 0-0 8 c3 d5! The myth goes that Marshall deliberately kept his analysis secret for seven years before playing it against Capablanca at New York 1918, but this has since been debunked by historians.   Regardless of its origins, it continues to wreck havoc both at club and elite level over 90 years on - and the latest high-profile victim is Ukrainian world No7 Vassily Ivanchuk, who got hit by some stunning new theory in it by Hungary’s Peter Leko at the recently concluded World Team Championship in Ningbo, China. ChessFM’s openings expert, GM Ronen Har-Zvi has comprehensively covered the Marshall Attack during his weekly openings show last year - but in a Gambit Guide special, GM Boris Alterman puts under the microscope Leko’s new novelty in the Marshall Attack that obviously wasn't covered during that particular series.  Learn More
  11. Two Knights Morphy Attack (2 video series)
    $5.98
    4. Ng5 in the Two Knight's Defense is an interesting, sharp move that practically wins a pawn by force, but Siegbert Tarrasch called it a "duffer's move". A common response is 4... d5 5. exd5, and we all know of the swashbuckling Wilkes-Barre Variation, Lolli Variation and the sacrificial Fried Liver Attack. But Black usually eschews all this with the main-line counter-gambit with 5...Na5. Now, in this Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman looks into the Morphy Variation with 6 d3, where Paul Morphy, the "pride and sorrow of chess," advocated trying to hang on to the pawn. Can it really be so simple for White to hang on to the pawn, or does Black have sufficient counter-play? Learn More
  12. Jaenisch Gambit (2 video series)
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    The Jaenisch or Schliemann Gambit in the Ruy Lopez with 3 ...f5 dates back to 1847. This provocative pawn sacrifice by black as early as move three often leads to games of a swashbuckling nature. Black dictates the action from the earliest moment - and often it can confuse the players of the white pieces. It has received a new lease of life with its adoption at elite level by Teimour Radjabov and others. And in this Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman takes a closer look at the Jaenisch/Schliemann Gambit. Learn More
  13. Grand Prix Attack (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Grand Prix Attack (2 part series) ECO: B23: Sicilian: Grand Prix attack The Grand Prix Attack with 1 e4 c5 2 Nc3 (followed by 3 f4) was coined by the prominent British chess writer Leonard Barden, because it featured heavily in so many games during the 1970s & 1980s in the British Grand Prix weekend tournament circuit - and especially from David Rumens and GM Mark Hebden; both these players literally devastated the opposition with it en route to many Grand Prix titles. And in his latest Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman takes a closer look at one of the main themes of the Grand Prix Attack, with the pawn sacrifice for White of f4-f5 followed by the launching of an all-out kingside attack. Learn More
  14. Italian-Koltanowski gambit ((2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Italian-Koltanowski gambit ((2 part series) ECO: C50 : Giuoco Piano GM Boris Alterman responds to the many requests from ICC members to delve into very aggressive lines such as the Italian-Koltanowski gambit with 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4. 0-0 Nf6 5. d4!? It looks like a complete throwback to a bygone romantic age of the 19th-century, but, surprisingly, two Super-GMs were slugging it out with it in the very modern setting of the Corus Wijk aan Zee tournament earlier this year, as Sergey Movsesian dusted off this forgotten variation to beat Michael Adams. Could it be a case of Back to the Future with this vicious line being brought back into praxis? Learn More
  15. Belgrade Gambit (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Belgrade Gambit (2 part series) ECO: C47: Four knights: Belgrade gambit The Belgrade Gambit (1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Nc3 Nf6 4 d4 exd4 5 Nd5!?) had its heyday in the 1970s, long before the Database deluge. Nowadays, every 'Russian Schoolboy' knows that 5...Be7 is a very effective antidote to this gambit. The main virtue though of obscure gambits, lies in the element of surprise when you play them. And despite not being in vogue, former world champion Anatoly Karpov, writing in his 1988 book The Open Game in Action, heartedly recommends the Belgrade gambit: "...this gambit leads to quite exciting and lively play. I think those who favor stormy complications should include the [Belgrade] gambit in their repertoire." And in a new two-part Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman re-evaluates the Belgrade gambit and suggests, just like Karpov, that it should indeed be included in your repertoire for surprise value alone! Learn More
  16. Sicilian Nimzowitsch (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Sicilian Nimzowitsch (2 part series) ECO: B29: Sicilian: Nimzovich-Rubinstein; Rubinstein counter-gambit The Sicilian Nimzowitsch (or Nimzo-Rubinstein) variation with 1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 Nf6!? is a relatively rare bird on the chess scene with some saying it’s on the verge of being unsound. But it’s a provocative line with great surprise value; and after 3 e5 often leads to sharp gambit-play that can pack quite a punch to the unwary facing it. In his latest Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman reviews the standing of the variation - and he even includes a look at how not to play it with the now infamous Becerra-Nakamura game recently in the USCL here on ICC, where the US Champion misplayed it to spectacularly lose in just 12 moves! Learn More
  17. Petroffs Defense Damiano variation (2 part series)
    $5.98
    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Petroff's Defense Damiano variation (2 part series) ECO: C42: Petrov: Damiano variation In volume 10 of the excellent NIC series Secrets of Opening Surprises, Israeli IM Or Cohen's article, "Petroff for Beginners," overviews the mirror-image opening of the Damiano variation with 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nf6 3 Nxe5 Nxe4!? which is reduced to a small note in the ECO, but that can set many pitfalls for white, as black gets a lot more out of the “beginner’s mistake” of copying white’s moves than most players realize. Much of the new pioneering work on the Damiano variation can be attributed to the Austrian IM Friedrich Karl Volkmann, who almost single-handedly has changed the evaluation of many of the key lines once thought to refute the venerable Damiano, so-called as it is similar to the mainline of the Damiano gambit with 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 f6?! 3 Nxe5 Qe7. And in his latest series of GM Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide on Chess.FM, our resident guru on all things gambits takes a closer look at all the new developments in the mainline of the Petroff's Defense Damiano variation with 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nf6 3 Nxe5 Nxe4 4 Qe2 Qe7 5 Qxe4 d6. Learn More
  18. Torre Attack: Spassky Gambit (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Torre Attack: Spassky Gambit (2 part series) ECO: A46: Queen's pawn: Torre attack The Torre Attack is one of those openings that deserves more attention than it gets. Over the years, it has featured in the repertoires of the likes of Petrosian, Spassky, Kamsky, and Yusupov. It suffers somewhat from a reputation as a stodgy variation, but white can play many of its lines in a sharp fashion, and black must have a solid understanding to reach equality. One such line is the Spassky gambit with 1 d4 Nf6 2 Nf3 e6 3 Bg5 c5 4 e3 Qb6 5 Nbd2!? The idea is simple: by sacrificing the poisoned pawn on b2, white develops his pieces quickly and gets a good grip on the center, which in turn gives great attacking chances. And in his latest Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman demonstrates just how easy - yet lethal - the Spassky gambit is to play. Learn More
  19. Ponzianis Opening (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Ponziani's Opening (2 part series) ECO: C44: Ponziani counter-gambit Ponziani's Opening (1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 c3) is regarded by many to be something of a relic from a bygone era in the game. Ever since its creator -- Dominico Lorenzo Ponziani -- introduced the opening in the 1760s, it has struggled for survival in tournament praxis. But a new book just published on it, Play the Ponziani (by Dave Taylor & Keith Hayward), could well see more occurrences of this venerable old opening. In the 300 page tome, the authors devote 25 pages to 3 …f5!? - the ultra-sharp option advocated by Ponziani himself, and called in his honor the Ponziani Counter-Gambit. And in a new series of Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide, our gambit guru puts 3 …f5!? to the test Learn More
  20. Siesta Variation (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Siesta Variation (2 part series) ECO: C74: Ruy Lopez: modern Steinitz defense, siesta variation The Siesta Variation in the Modern Steinitz (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 d6 5.c3 f5) is a dangerous weapon against the Ruy Lopez, and is anything but sleepy. It is very similar in style to the Janisch (or Schliemann) Gambit, but can prove more potent as accepting the gambit can see White getting a rude wake-up call by being hit with a quick and ferocious kingside attack. Many believe it has Spanish origins due to the name, but it is in fact derived from the location of the 1928 Budapest tournament, held in the Siesta Sanatorium, where Jose Raul Capablanca successfully deployed it against Andreas Steiner. Capablanca viewed it then to be “too risky,” but modern day champions of the Siesta, such as the Russian GM Valeri Yandemirov, have developed the shaper play around it. Learn More
  21. Vienna: Frankenstein-Dracula (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Vienna: Frankenstein-Dracula (2 part series) ECO: C27: Vienna game It's trick or treat time with a special Halloween edition of Gambit Guide this week, as GM Boris Alterman investigates the Frankenstein-Dracula variation in the Vienna Opening with 1 e4 e5 2 Nc3 Nf6 3 Bc4 Nxe4 4 Qh5 Nd6 5 Bb3 Nc6 6 Nb5 g6 7 Qf3 f5 8 Qd5 Qe7 9 Nxc7+ Kd8 10 Nxa8 b6. This particular hair-raising exchange sacrifice in the Vienna was given it's ghoulishly gothic title by correspondence guru Tim Harding, who wrote many articles about it during the late 1970s. He explained that it is so-called because it is terrifying for both sides, and, much like those two famous gentleman of the night, has an incredible facility for rising - theory-wise at least - from the grave. Learn More
  22. Blumenfeld Gambit (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Blumenfeld Gambit (2 part series) ECO: E10: Blumenfeld counter-gambit The Blumenfeld Gambit with 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nf3 c5 4 d5 b5!? is a blood relative to the more universally popular Benko Gambit. While it was the invention of Russian master Benjamin Blumenfeld (1884-1947), it only became of interest after Alekhine used it to good effect as he destroyed Tarrasch in 1922 with a text-book advert for the gambit. Modern master praxis has been to decline the gambit with 5 Bg5 rather than being faced with a strong pawn sacrifice for easy piece play and a direct attack a la Alekhine-Tarrasch. But in his latest Gambit Guide series for ICC, GM Boris Alterman shows that the Blumenfeld - even when White declines the gambit - has strategic depth beyond its first impressions Learn More
  23. Tartakower variation (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Tartakower variation (2 part series) ECO: B12: Caro-Kann: Tartakower (fantasy) variation The "Fantasy Variation" of the Caro-Kann defense in chess, otherwise known as the Tartakower variation, begins with the simple 1 e4 c6 2 d4 d5 3 f3. The idea is to open the f-file with the pawn sacrifice and use rapid development to bring pressure on Black's kingside quickly. It isn't that difficult to learn, resembles the Blackmar-Diemer Gambit in many ways, and often leads to sacrifices and other fireworks not usually associated with the solid Caro-Kann. And in the latest of his Gambut Guide series, GM Boris Alterman takes a closer look at the Fantasy variation. Learn More
  24. Alekhine 4-Pawns Attack (2 video series)
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    GM Boris Alterman again responds to ICC members who have asked our resident expert in all things gambits what to do in the Alekhine 4-Pawns Attack if Black eschews the big main line with 1. e4 Nf6 2. e5 Nd5 3. c4 Nb6 4. d4 d6 5. f4 dxe5 6. fxe5 Nc6 7. Be3 Bf5 8. Nc3 e6 9. Nf3 Be7 10. d5 Nb4?! His answer? Look no further than a particularly aggressive gambit line with 11. Rc1 f6 12. a3 Na6 13. g4!? - originally a recommendation of the leading Soviet master of his day Alexander Zaitsev (1935-71), and lately given the big thumbs up by another top Russian in Alexander Morozevich! Learn More
  25. Krejcik Gambit (2 video series)
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    GM Boris Alterman again responds to ICC members who have asked our resident expert in all things gambits what to do in the Krejcik Gambit in the Dutch Defense! Learn More
  26. Kotrc-Mieses Gambit (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Kotrc-Mieses Gambit (2 part series) ECO: B01: Scandinavian, Mieses-Kotrc gambit The Scandinavian or Center Counter with 2…Qxd5 3 Nc3 Qa5 has a reputation of being solid for Black with the position going on to resemble a Caro-Kann or Slav Defense set-up. But for those looking for the cut and thrust of swashbuckling play, then there’s a more speculative approach to 3...Qa5 - the Kotrc-Mieses Gambit with 4.b4?! If Black plays correctly, White should have no compensation for the sacrificed pawn, but it can be difficult to prove this over the board. And in his latest Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman has a closer look at the Kotrc-Mieses Gambit. Learn More
  27. Tal Gambit (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Tal Gambit (2 part series) ECO: B21: Sicilian: Grand Prix attack Books and songs were written about him; and the Tal Memorial now underway in Moscow, the strongest tournament of the year, further reminds us of the legacy of the incomparable genius that was Mikhail Tal. ("finger TalMemorial09"). Tal was also known as "The Magician from Riga" because of his extremely powerful and imaginative attacking style. And back in 1979 (against Englishman IM Bill Hartston), Tal unleashed on the world the “Tal Gambit” with 1 e4 c5 2 f4 d5 3 exd5 Nf6!; a move that practically overnight put 2 f4 out of business. He only drew the game in question against Hartston - but Tal’s energetic play throughout proved to be a model for how to play against 2 f4 that soon players had to resort to 2 Nc3 first followed then only by f4. . And in a tribute to Tal during his memorial event in Moscow (covered live throughout on Chess.FM), GM Boris Alterman gives us a timely reminder in his new two-part series of Gambit Guide of why the Tal Gambit is such an effective riposte to 2 f4 in the Sicilian. Learn More
  28. Semi-Slav: Winawer variation (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Semi-Slav: Winawer variation (2 part series) ECO: D10: QGD Slav: Winawer counter-gambit We all know of the Winawer variation in the French defense, but in 1901 at Monte Carlo against Frank Marshall, Polish legend Szymon Winawer (1838-1920) introduced us to his counter-gambit in the Slav defense with 1 d4 d5 2 c4 c6 3 Nc3 e5!? Although seldom seen at top level nowadays, even Garry Kasparov had to face the aggressive Winawer counter-gambit when its modern-day guru, Pedrag Nikolic, played it against the then world champion at the 1992 Manila Olympiad. Other players who have played it include Johnny Hector and Alexander Morozevich. And in his latest Gambit Guide, GM Boris Alterman takes a look at the Winawer counter-gambit in a new two-part series. Learn More
  29. Gajewski Gambit (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Gajewski Gambit (2 part series) ECO: C96: Ruy Lopez: closed (9...Na5) As chess gambits go, the Gajewski Gambit with 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0 0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 0 0 9.h3 Na5 10.Bc2 d5!? is a relative newcomer to the game. The position after White's tenth move had been reached thousands of times with 10...c5 being universally played, before the Polish grandmaster Grzegorz Gajewski revealed recently that Black has a fascinating, almost Marshall Attack-like gambit at his disposal with 10 …d5!? The introductory game came at the 2007 Czech open, when Gajewski uncorked it against the unsuspecting Kuznetsov, in a brilliant attacking game that soon became a hot candidate for novelty of the year. It was then given the seal of approval at elite level by being taken up after this by Carlsen and Leko. And in a new series of GM Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide, our gambit guru takes a closer look at the adventurous Gajewski Gambit. Learn More
  30. Spielmann Gambit (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Spielmann Gambit (2 part series) ECO: B02: Alekhine's defense: Spielmann variation If you are looking for swashbuckling gambit play, then look no further than 'The Master of Attack' Rudolph Spielmann (1883-1942), who once said that "A good sacrifice is one that is not necessarily sound but leaves your opponent dazed and confused." Spielmann came up with an almost caveman-like gambit to take on the hypermodern Alekhine's Defense when players tried to transpose into a classical French after 1. e4 Nf6 2. Nc3 d5 3. e5 Nfd7 with 4. e6!? This is a dangerous gambit that gives White easy piece-play and can indeed leave Black dazed and confused, when just the slightest of slips can prove fatal and all roads leading to miniatureville. And in his latest Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman takes a closer look at the Spielmann gambit for White. Learn More
  31. Dilworth variation (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Dilworth variation (2 part series) ECO: C82: Ruy Lopez: open, Dilworth variation You don’t need to be a superstar to receive immortality in the game – all you need is the ability to hitch your name to a popular opening system. One classic case was English amateur correspondence player and humble railway’s clerk Vernon Dilworth (1916-2004), who published analysis in the British magazine “Chess” during the early 1940s that rehabilitated an old line of the Open Lopez. Dilworth became famous overnight after his analysis was spotted by the great Mikhail Botvinnik, who used the tricky line (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0–0 Nxe4 6.d4 b5 7.Bb3 d5 8.dxe5 Be6 9.c3 Bc5 10.Bc2 0–0 11.Nbd2 Nxf2!?) as a surprise weapon against Vassily Smylsov during the 1943/4 Moscow Championship. And the ‘Dangerous Dilworth’ is not only tricky but still alive and kicking today with many titled players over the years falling victim to it. Learn More
  32. Schliemann Defense Deferred (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Schliemann Defense Deferred (2 part series) ECO: C70: Ruy Lopez: Schliemann defense deferred The Schliemann Defense Deferred, with 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 a6 4 Ba4 f5 is, of course, very similar in nature to the more popular Schliemann Defense covered during an earlier series of Gambit Guide. It has never had a good reputation, but it remains a surprise weapon with no clear refutation. The key difference between the two is that in the deferred form Black can have a timely …b5 available. The deferred was a favorite of the original chess thinker David Bronstein, and even Viktor Korchnoi used it to draw with Anantoly Karpov during their many world championship battles; lately, Alexei Shirov has played it. And in a new series of Gambit Guide, we take a closer look at the nuances of the Schliemann Deferred. Learn More
  33. Alatorsev Gambit in the Botvinnik Semi Slav (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Alatorsev Gambit in the Botvinnik Semi Slav (2 part series) ECO: D44: QGD semi-Slav: anti-Meran gambit Vladimir Alexeyevich Alatorsev (1909-1987), was a Russian chess grandmaster, organizer, teacher, author, and administrator. During his career, he became champion of both Leningrad and Moscow, and played nine times in the Soviet Chess Championship finals, with his best competitive results in the 1930s, as he placed clear second in the 1933 Soviet final. Alatortsev was an early Leningrad chess rival of Mikhail Botvinnik, who later became World Champion. The Botvinnik Semi Slav 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 e6 5.Bg5 dxc4 6.e4 b5 7.e5 h6 8.Bh4 g5 9.Nxg5 is one of the most complicated Chess openings, with highly unbalanced situations and double edge play. However, despite the main line with 9...hg 10. bg5 Nbd7, Black can try out the less known Gambit line 9...Nd5!?, named after Alatorsev. In the new two-part Gambit Guide series, GM Boris Alterman shows you the main ideas and recent developments in this quite sharp and interesting line. Learn More
  34. Damiano gambit (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Damiano gambit (2 part series) ECO: C40: Damiano's defense One of the first chess books to be published in Italy, at the height of the Renaissance, was written by the Portuguese master Pedro Damiano back in 1512. In it, he noted that after 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 the reply 2…Nc6 is good, 2…d6 is not so good, and 2…f6 (the opening named after him) is worst. Many believed for years thereafter that the outright refutation of the Damiano to be 3 Nxe5. However, even today, the Damiano with 2…f6?! retains something of a cult underground following. Even Bobby Fischer played the recommended refutation of it during his legendary simultaneous tour of the US in 1964 and could only draw. The shock value alone of playing the Damiano with 2…f6?! in online play has seen a lot of positive results for Black. And following many requests from ICC members on what to do against it, our resident gambit guru, GM Boris Alterman, overviews it in his latest Gambit Guide series for Chess.FM. Learn More
  35. Riga Variation (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Riga Variation (2 part series) ECO: C80: Ruy Lopez: open, Riga variation The Riga Variation in the Open Ruy Lopez (1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 a6 4 Ba4 Nf6 5 0-0 Nxe4 6 d4 exd4) was first played during a correspondence match in 1907 between the two cities of Berlin and Riga - and despite many believing it is ultimately unsound, its reputation is better than once thought and new discoveries in it were revealed in NIC YearBook 85 by Correspondence GM Peter Boll. The Riga variation is exciting and often leads to many wild sacrificial gambits galore, where, if White is unsure of what is going on, can easily lead to many a Black quick wins. Learn More
  36. Cordel Gambit (2 part series)
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    Boris Alterman's Gambit Guide: Cordel Gambit (2 part series) ECO: C64: Ruy Lopez: Cordel gambit Oskar Cordel (1843-1913) was not so much a top player in Germany but more thought of as a theorists on the game, with many published opening books and magazine articles to his name. Nevertheless, the author did leave a lasting legacy of two variations in the Ruy Lopez he championed: the Cordel variation and the Cordel gambit with 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 Bc5 4 c3 f5?! The Cordel gambit can lead to some very strange positions and there are many bizarre responses to it - but ultimately it has never proved to be strictly sound, though it is useful as a surprise weapon when you are looking for wild, tactical games. The Cordel gambit has been adopted as such by modern-day grandmasters Ivan Sokolov, Ian Rogers and Jonny Hector. Learn More

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