Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Delayed Marshall Gambit

In his article today at ChessBase, “A New Marshall Gambit,” Lars Schandorff discusses the line 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5,O-O Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 O-O 9.h3 Na5 10.Bc2 d5!? which might be called the "Marshall Two-Step" or "Delayed Marshall Gambit." Schandorff writes: "For a traditional chess mind it doesn't make sense and probably some of the ancient masters would turn in their graves if they knew about it. They always played the normal 10...c5 with a typical Ruy Lopez game. But ...d5? Are you serious?" In the new age of chess realism, though, we must say, "If it works, it's good" and the games that Schandorff cites prove that Black is doing well.

I first saw the line in Charbonneau - Benjamin, USCL 2007, which I annotated as part of my coverage of the New Jersey Knockouts. Later I saw mention of it at the ever-popular Streatham & Brixton CC Blog under "My Favourite Moves V." Most players point to Kuznetsov - Gajewski, Czech Open 2007 (annotated by Tony Kosten) as the first example, but Carlsen - Adams, World Cup 2007 (annotated by Goran Urosevic -- also at must be the most significant. In any event, I'm sure it's not the last we have seen of it.



Blogger katar said...

lately this blog is a shrine to Joel Benjamin. i suggest as title for your next post:

it's all about the benjamins.

Wed Mar 19, 07:56:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Michael Goeller said...

Actually, it's a shrine to New Jersey chess -- it just happens to be New Jersey GM Benjamin's moment in the spotlight, what with his birthday and his recent autobiography. Don't worry, I'll move on to other subjects soon -- just two more Benjamin posts planned....

Wed Mar 19, 09:17:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Tom Chivers said...

I wonder if we'll start seeing 5.d3 from white, just giving up entirely on getting the ideal centre in two tempi? Black at the moment seems to be leading the way in the Ruy; this particular line looks terrifying for white.

Thu Mar 20, 06:03:00 AM EDT  

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