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Posted by Matthew Sadler on 22nd May 2020

Another king march for Alexander Zaitsev

Continuing my journey through books from Steve Giddins’ collection, I came across a volume of Russian Grandmaster Alexander Zaitsev’s best games. If you know your Karpov games, then his name may ring a bell as he was the Black player in this astonishing position after 18 moves at the 1970 Russian Championship, a game Karpov

Posted by Matthew Sadler on 12th May 2020

6.Bg5 Sicilian Najdorf classic: Bannik – Petrosian

Quite a while ago, Steve Giddins gave me some photocopies of articles from old Russian magazines. They were game collections of Russian players, some known, some very obscure to the West. One of the players who fell into the latter category was the Ukrainian player Anatoly Bannik. Bannik won the Ukrainian Championship 5 times and

Posted by Matthew Sadler on 3rd May 2020

Padevsky’s almost brilliant Scotch!

Another Steve Giddins book I’ve been getting into is the Best Games collection of Russian Grandmaster Ratmir Kholmov (1925-2006). Best known in the West for convincingly beating Bobby Fischer at Havana 1965 on the Black side of a Ruy Lopez, Kholmov is one of many extremely strong Russian players who – for whatever reason –

Posted by Matthew Sadler on 1st May 2020

Istvan Bilek’s missed brilliancy against Tal

A few months ago, my friend and former coach Steve Giddins decided to sell the greater part of his fantastic chess book collection. My tiny flat is already creaking under the weight of the review copies I receive every month from New in Chess, but I purchased the maximum I could fit in! One excellent

Posted by Matthew Sadler on 1st February 2019

The Lasker-Marshall rivalry – Part 5. Lasker’s struggle against the Exchange Slav

The last game in this series was a Marshall near-miss: the exciting game where Marshall was White against Lasker in New York 1924. The game featured an Exchange Slav – a favourite of Marshall’s (“A capture I have favoured throughout my career, and with very good results”) which was later taken up with great success