Friday, August 07, 2009

The Guardian on The Scandinavian

Aficionados of The Scandinavian Opening (also called The Centre Counter) might like to turn their attention to The Guardian's chess section over the next few weeks. For there you'll find novelist Ronan Bennett and GM Daniel King talk about your beloved system. Every instalment is in a conversational style, with each author offering their views/assessments of the given position. For example, after 1 e4 d5 2 exd5 Qxd5 3 Nc3, Bennett says:

Life is busy and time is short, too short for me ever to have bothered to study the Scandinavian, so I have no idea what theory recommends. I can see two viable options. The first is the retreat to safety, 3...Qd8. The only reason I'd be tempted to play this is that I have a dim memory of seeing the black queen get cornered and captured in some Scandinavian game or other. But it seems such a waste of time. The more aggressive option is 3...Qa5, with the hope of putting further pressure on c3 with a later ...Bb4. Play might go 4 d4 Nf6 5 Nf3 and maybe now 5...c6 would be advisable, providing an escape route for the queen.

Well, OK, it all sounds a bit pedestrian so far - but hopefully, the pace and really interesting bit will pick up as soon we get into the middle game. Part 1 was last week, while part 2 was just posted today.


Lauri said...

1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Qxd5 3.Nc3 Qa5 used to be my mainline as black but nowadays - even I haven't played ...d5 for a while - my focus has turned into 3...Qd6 which I guess is partly because of the trend but also it seems black setup looks quite solid.

Facetime said...

31 years ago, I tought Daniel King (then about 15 years old like me) to appreciate Belgian lager in my local pub in Eeklo ("De Rivendel"). In return, Daniel tought me how to loose a game with 5 minutes on my clock against 1 minute on his'. Very nice guy. BTW - DK was there for the ECI European Youth Chess Championship (which he won, despite a serious hangover). I wonder if he remembers...