Sports & Games

Case Study: Opening

Garry Kasparov

Lesson time 20:38 min

Garry dissects his opening against Vishy Anand in 1995. The discussion includes analysis of a decisive mistake, strong attacks, tactical motifs, and a powerful yet quiet move that came at a rare early stage of the game.

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It's my game against Vishy Anand-- 1995-- tournament in Riga, the last classical game before our World Championship match that we played in New York later that year on the top of the World Trade Center, 107th floor. And what a coincidence, the first game, where Mayor Giuliani made the first move September 11, 1995. And for that game in Riga, I thought that I could surprise Vishy. I always had an appetite for looking for some old openings. I remember preparing for a match with Karpov in 1990. I thought, oh, there many ideas in the Ruy Lopez. But people will start thinking a bit early-- not at move 15 or 20. How about move three? How about playing Scotch? And I look for some lines there. And I realized that the opening, Scotch, that was in oblivion for 100 years could be revived because of many new ideas, strategic ideas. It's not necessarily everything should be very sharp. But you have some strategic ideas that people couldn't appreciate in the 19th century. So it worked for me. It worked against Karpov. It worked many more times. And Scotch served me well until the very end of my career. But for Vishy, I had something else. So I thought maybe I could play something more dramatic, I would even say more romantic-- Evans Gambit. That also was wiped away from professional chess. But in the 19th century, after the Knights of Evans Gambit like Mikhail Chigorin and the great Russian player, they were totally destroyed by Emanuel Lasker for instance, and others. So Bc4, Bc5. And I played b4. So I had very little experience with Evans Gambit. Because after my World Championship match with Nigel Short in 1993 in London, we had few days. I won the match, more or less, so we just had few playing days left. And the organizers wanted to fill it with some excitement. And we were a part of playing rapid chess, four rapid games. Also we were forced-- I was forced to play some openings, because it was kind of a draw. So, oh, you play King's Gambit with White. You play it with Black. And I remember the game one of this old-fashioned chess, I had to play Evans Gambit. And Nigel went for this Be7 line, as Vishy did. After d4, Na5. So I took on e5. Nxc4, Nxc4, d5. I took on d5. Qxd5. And then Ne3, it's a good position for the knight. And I had interesting game initiative. But this one was a draw. And later on I just studied it a little bit and thought, oh, maybe White had another idea. But I put it just on the shelf. So it was not my top priority. And I was pretty sure that Vishy would play Be7. Because that's what happens. If you face such a new line, sharp line. So you don't go for lines like Ba5 or Bc5, because they're-- Too much theory. Yeah, too much theory. Be7, and then you play after d4, Na5, you exchange this bishop. And it's a position that is fairly solid. ...


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At age 22, Garry Kasparov became the youngest world chess champion. After beating Bobby Fischer’s peak rating, he outranked his fiercest competitors for over twenty years. Now, Garry is ready to share the chess strategy that made him a six-time world champion. Through detailed lessons, including his favorite openings and advanced tactics, you will develop the instincts and philosophy to become a stronger player.



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Thinking outside of the box. We think of chess being just series of patterns but it is not just that.

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Comments

Gary P.

It is his passion for the game that wins you over a great player and teacher.

Rian S.

NF3!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Morgan T.

Great advice and a pleasure to see Kasparov's joy in his complete domination over Vishy.

Dr. Gary A.

Good lesson. It is really helpful to look over Kasparov's shoulder, see the positions and hear him share his thought processes as he moved through the game.

Krishna P.

I think opening preparation is more about piece and centre development and this analysis proves it. Recently, the Alpha Zero games also proved that sticking to few basic principles of opening are always desirable. People who spend years learning an opening sometimes forget the basics.

Eric S.

Anand must have been really shocked to see an Evans Gambit. After this "pasting", he probably wished he had played a Two Knights' Defense or a Hungarian Defense. I think he had to play 5...Ba5, the Main Line and get to Lasker's Defense or the older defense, the Sanders-Alapin Line. With 5...Be7, Kasparov jumped all over that move. Interesting the way the tactics just flowed from simple means.

Dan T.

That was what I always felt Mr. Kasparov has done is try to keep the pressure and initiative, lot of energy in his games still. I enjoy his pawn pushes always seem to be at the right time to do something positive.