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1.b4 IDEAS...

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  • 1.b4 IDEAS...

    Sokolsky Opening (also known as the Orangutan or Polish Opening).

    1) Meets Opening Principle #1 (Development after Bb2 w/ Good: Central Control, might I add...)
    2) Offers: Protection of Rook on a1.
    3) Threatens at least a Pawn after Bb2. (My Principle: Intimidation)
    4) The dream of b5 CAN be Realized, if Provoked w/ a5 or c5, which has the Advatadge of gaining Tempi of Black's queen-side knight OR taking away, those squares from it....
    5) b4 can be Protected w/ a3, or Exchanged for the e-pawn (usually).... (Key Variations) I don't know which is Better, but as of Now, I like the Added Protection because it makes Black's Bishop, Bite on Granite.... Although, looking at Statistical Results: People seem to play the exchange better! (Probably because Nf3 can be easily played without the Fear of e4 (by Black).
    6) The Plan is: e3, c4, Nc3 (all supporting a b5 PUSH)
    7) It makes more sense to Bring Pieces to Bear on the Black King-side, as that is usually prefered to castle too... whereas the Queen can "jump" stay on her side, or FOCUS on the king side, if Needed....
    8) The pawns which are pushed are the Pawns to be Promoted or Traded off.... Good if Black plays 0-0. (Or, if Traded, then open File Attack!)


    Now, I need a Good way of Playing these thoughts (with commentary of these points - If you want)..... Any Suggestions?
    "Without sensibility, no object would be given to us. Without understanding, no object would be thought. Thoughts without content are empty. Intuitions without concepts are blind." Immanuel Kant - "Critique of Pure Reason."

  • #2
    Hi dustinkinney.

    I use to play similar lines but with b3 and I start it with 1.Nf3 then 2.b2 3.Bb2. then play c4. I usually play this set up if black will reply 1...Nf6 with my 1.Nf3.

    Anyway, what's the use of b4? What does it accomplish? Why is it that the squares the pawn control are (should be considered) critical?

    Can you post a sample game with it so that we can also examine black's best replies/strategy.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Anon View Post
      Hi dustinkinney.

      I use to play similar lines but with b3 and I start it with 1.Nf3 then 2.b2 3.Bb2. then play c4. I usually play this set up if black will reply 1...Nf6 with my 1.Nf3.

      Anyway, what's the use of b4? What does it accomplish? Why is it that the squares the pawn control are (should be considered) critical?

      Can you post a sample game with it so that we can also examine black's best replies/strategy.
      The point of b4 over b3:

      is My points Numbered, 4 & 5.

      1) Grab the Space to make the Natural development of Black's queen-side Bishop, Bite on Granite with the Move a3.
      2) If Provoked, the Dream move aka. b5 can be Played for, denying or Gaining Tempo to Black's queen-side Knight.

      3) Although, NOT exactly, All the ideas: Here is a Sample Game: DEEP BLUE.

      Computer Chess Games -- Deep Blue v Bronstein 1 - YouTube
      Last edited by dustinkinney; 07-30-2012, 04:02 AM.
      "Without sensibility, no object would be given to us. Without understanding, no object would be thought. Thoughts without content are empty. Intuitions without concepts are blind." Immanuel Kant - "Critique of Pure Reason."

      Comment


      • #4
        When I was playing USCF chess in the 1980's, one of the best players in our local club played this as his white opening. (However, he dropped it later when his rating went above 2000)

        It is a annoying opening.

        The bishop cuts through the center and is difficult to exchange. If white get's to push b5 and a4, it cramps the black queenside and it's hard to untangle.

        The downside is it gives black a pretty free hand in setting up his center formation so white has to know a lot of flexible principles (as opposed to memorizing lines) because black probably won't know the "main lines" and will be making it up on the fly.

        Comment


        • #5
          When people play 1.b4 against me I often answer 1.... a5. It is usually good for at least 10 minutes on the clock in a slow game while my opponent tries to figure out what I am up to and then plays 2.b5. In blitz, I often win on time because of the initial surprise of my opponents and the first few moments when they contemplate all of the nuances of the position after my first move. In all likelihood 1.... a5 is not what white was expecting when he played 1.b4.

          It has the added benefit of one upping the lack of respect shown by white by playing such an unorthodox opening with an equally unorthodox reply. 1... a5 is entirely logical. The 1.b4 thrust is annoying and unusual so why not clarify things on the queenside right away. If white takes then black just develops normally and takes the pawn back at his leisure. The dynamism of the white position evaporates. Black gets to develop his rook on the a-file without having to move it. White has an isolated pawn on the a file which might become weak and will at the very least require constant protection.

          If white plays b5 then I will often play c5 inviting white to make another decision which will have consequences for the whole game. Taking on c6 allows the option of recapturing with either pawn or knight. I usually opt for the knight with the aim of quick development. Not taking leaves the queenside closed with the pawn on b5 getting in the way of the white light squared bishop. Black can then lock up the queenside with an eventual b6 or hold off and develop the knight there to pressure the pawn on a5. In some lines black can also play a4 to gain even more space and then use the a file for a timely rook lift which can then swing over to the kingside in some cases.

          EDIT: I looked it up in megabase and after 2.bxa5 the chessbase opening report suggests 2... c5 which wouldn't be my first choice but has some logic to it. Black scores well in all lines.
          Last edited by Crash; 07-30-2012, 05:30 PM.

          Comment


          • #6
            I don't really have much respect for the opening to be honest. And to compare it as an opening that follows principled chess is ludacris. It is among the "unsound" openings, and all you have to do to beat it is play real principled chess. Now if you are playing it to have fun? That is a different story. By all means. I know there is some decent books on the opening in order to play it according to theory. We have an A class player who likes to play it to annoy the other members for kicks, I can ask him what his book is he uses for the theory if you like? You can easily play this opening well into 2000 if you so feel like it.

            Lemme know..
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            • #7
              I believe that, on the rare occasion I meet 1. b4, I play the equally annoying c6. Shuts that bishop down for some time.
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              • #8
                Anyone who needs 10 minutes to know how to answer 1.... a5 is not a Polish Opening player. It's an automatic push to b5. And if you play 2....c5 then he would not take the c pawn as that would enable your development. He would more likely play 3. a4 to keep your queenside jammed up and take away c6 from your knight.

                I have a book somewhere on the opening (unread ). Maybe tonight I'll check out what they list as the main lines when I get home.

                It looks like it should be a junk opening, but it does have some hypermodern aspects and getting your pawns arranged so the white b2 bishop "bites on granite" is easier said than done.

                Just my opinion, but the reflex of most players is to try to refute 1.b4 outright when I think the best way is to simply develop classically in the center.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Skwerly View Post
                  I believe that, on the rare occasion I meet 1. b4, I play the equally annoying c6. Shuts that bishop down for some time.
                  Interesting.

                  I'm having trouble picturing this. So you play 1.b4 c6 2. Bb2 How does c6 shut down or annoy the bishop on b2?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by thedarkknight View Post
                    Anyone who needs 10 minutes to know how to answer 1.... a5 is not a Polish Opening player.
                    Probably true, but the drama and comedy of the moment in a tournament game from a couple of years ago when my opponent spent quite a bit more time on his first and second moves than I did was quite priceless. He commented that he was greatly regretting preparing that surprise for me after three or four moves.

                    It's an automatic push to b5. And if you play 2....c5 then he would not take the c pawn as that would enable your development. He would more likely play 3. a4 to keep your queenside jammed up and take away c6 from your knight.
                    My knight doesn't need c6 to live a long and productive life. If he plays a4 then a plan with Nd7-b6 provides some opportunity for being very annoying. I have also played b6 and developed my bishop on the long diagonal.

                    There was also a recent game that I featured in one of my lectures where black just takes the pawn after 1... e5 2.Bb2 Bxb4 and gives up the e5 pawn but gets very good development for the minor drawback of giving up a central pawn. I am with cookiemonster here. This is not serious chess and you need not take this opening that seriously. 1... a5 is good because it is simple and not complicated and leads to a black positional advantage or at least clear equality in most lines.

                    I believe that 1.... a5 is something I saw Milan Vukadinov play in blitz many years ago.

                    I have a book somewhere on the opening (unread ). Maybe tonight I'll check out what they list as the main lines when I get home.

                    It looks like it should be a junk opening, but it does have some hypermodern aspects and getting your pawns arranged so the white b2 bishop "bites on granite" is easier said than done.
                    I have one or two books on the topic including a relatively recent one by a strong player. I can't say that I have spent much time on them though.

                    Just my opinion, but the reflex of most players is to try to refute 1.b4 outright when I think the best way is to simply develop classically in the center.
                    The drawback to that is that one would expect the 1.b4 player to be prepared for that.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by thedarkknight View Post
                      Interesting.

                      I'm having trouble picturing this. So you play 1.b4 c6 2. Bb2 How does c6 shut down or annoy the bishop on b2?
                      I know there's a Qb6 that should be thrown in there somewhere that threatens/prepares the a5 push.

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                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Phoenix View Post
                        I know there's a Qb6 that should be thrown in there somewhere that threatens/prepares the a5 push.
                        1. b4 c6 2. Bb2 Qb6 3. a3 a5 4. c4 axb4 5. c5 Qc7 6. axb4 Rxa1 7. Bxa1
                        "Without sensibility, no object would be given to us. Without understanding, no object would be thought. Thoughts without content are empty. Intuitions without concepts are blind." Immanuel Kant - "Critique of Pure Reason."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by dustinkinney View Post
                          2) Offers: Protection of Rook on a1.
                          Right, because a key opening principle, especially for white, is to defend pieces which black isn't attacking and has no realistic immediate prospects of attacking.

                          3) Threatens at least a Pawn after Bb2. (My Principle: Intimidation)
                          Intimidation? Give me a great. If you're thinking along this sort of line you're wasting a ton of time.

                          It's not hard for black to develop while protecting g7. This is particularly true since he can do so by playing a move he almost always wants to play anyway: Nf6.

                          6) The Plan is: e3, c4, Nc3 (all supporting a b5 PUSH)
                          Because investing a lot of resources early in a wing push when the position in the center is still fluid is sound chess strategy!

                          (In case you can't tell, I'm being sarcastic).

                          7) It makes more sense to Bring Pieces to Bear on the Black King-side, as that is usually prefered to castle too... whereas the Queen can "jump" stay on her side, or FOCUS on the king side, if Needed....
                          No, it doesn't. It makes more sense to Bring Pieces to Bear (capitalized or no) on the places where blacks moves have created opportunities for you to achieve an advantage.

                          A hallmark of weak amateur play is a desire to go king-hunting regardless of the nature of the position.

                          Now, I need a Good way of Playing these thoughts (with commentary of these points - If you want)..... Any Suggestions?
                          Play sound, classical chess.

                          You're not strong enough for anything else to be anything but a waste of your time.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Ronaldinho View Post
                            Right, because a key opening principle, especially for white, is to defend pieces which black isn't attacking and has no realistic immediate prospects of attacking.



                            Intimidation? Give me a great. If you're thinking along this sort of line you're wasting a ton of time.

                            It's not hard for black to develop while protecting g7. This is particularly true since he can do so by playing a move he almost always wants to play anyway: Nf6.



                            Because investing a lot of resources early in a wing push when the position in the center is still fluid is sound chess strategy!

                            (In case you can't tell, I'm being sarcastic).



                            No, it doesn't. It makes more sense to Bring Pieces to Bear (capitalized or no) on the places where blacks moves have created opportunities for you to achieve an advantage.

                            A hallmark of weak amateur play is a desire to go king-hunting regardless of the nature of the position.



                            Play sound, classical chess.

                            You're not strong enough for anything else to be anything but a waste of your time.
                            Over-Protection isn't a Bad Idea.... (but is secondary to the Primary Principles of Chess). Sometimes, it's Good to know, that if an Exchange Happened, then you'd be able to Recapture.... Did you see the Line I posted, up to move 7, in the Discussion?

                            True, it isnt HARD for Black to defend.... but, isn't it GREAT, that you, as white, still have the Initiatiave?

                            Sure, the b5 PUSH plan, may Not be the case for ALL situations, but it's there, And is Supported....

                            King Hunting is the Objective of the Game.... (usually done, when Favorable Odds have already been obtained) But, should NOT be the Case - where weakening your Position, such as the 4 move....

                            Think outside YOUR BOX. Sound, Classical Chess is a BOX, your in. Is that BOX even 99% Perfect? BTW: being in Boxes, even Classical Chess Boxes - isn't Necessarily a BAD idea, as in Profiling Drivers based upon their Records.... Maybe, your Auto Insurance rates are Cheaper, because of Less Accidents, but maybe NOT.... Are you Reaching YOUR destination?????

                            Also, why NOT bring something to the Table..... all I heard was complaining! If you see an Obvious Flaw to b4, then "show me the Flaw in a Line...." Note: DEEP BLUE is Not an Easy Opponent!
                            "Without sensibility, no object would be given to us. Without understanding, no object would be thought. Thoughts without content are empty. Intuitions without concepts are blind." Immanuel Kant - "Critique of Pure Reason."

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by dustinkinney View Post
                              Over-Protection isn't a Bad Idea.... (but is secondary to the Primary Principles of Chess). Sometimes, it's Good to know, that if an Exchange Happened, then you'd be able to Recapture.... Did you see the Line I posted, up to move 7, in the Discussion?

                              True, it isnt HARD for Black to defend.... but, isn't it GREAT, that you, as white, still have the Initiatiave?

                              Sure, the b5 PUSH plan, may Not be the case for ALL situations, but it's there, And is Supported....

                              King Hunting is the Objective of the Game.... (usually done, when Favorable Odds have already been obtained) But, should NOT be the Case - where weakening your Position, such as the 4 move....

                              Think outside YOUR BOX. Sound, Classical Chess is a BOX, your in. Is that BOX even 99% Perfect? BTW: being in Boxes, even Classical Chess Boxes - isn't Necessarily a BAD idea, as in Profiling Drivers based upon their Records.... Maybe, your Auto Insurance rates are Cheaper, because of Less Accidents, but maybe NOT.... Are you Reaching YOUR destination?????

                              Also, why NOT bring something to the Table..... all I heard was complaining! If you see an Obvious Flaw to b4, then "show me the Flaw in a Line...." Note: DEEP BLUE is Not an Easy Opponent!
                              Ronaldinho wasn't wrong in his observations, harsher than I would've phrased it but that's okay.

                              Obvious flaws with 1.b4, are you kidding?

                              Taking a look at your points:
                              1. You're off the ball here, b4 develops nothing in and of itself. This can be said of a bunch of other opening moves as well, but giving 1.b4 as a development-facilitating move is more than a little awkward. Next we'll recommend 1.h4 because it opens a line for the rook...
                              The pawn is loose. It takes white just one move to attack it; worse, it'll be a normal developing move too.
                              The bishop on the long diagonal is a different story entirely, that's all well and good, but could be achieved with 1.b3 as well, in which case the pawn structure is much more solid. Both 1.b3 and 1.b4 are examples of developing slowly; the b-pawn push only frees the bishop, no other pieces profit.
                              If black sticks a pair of pawns in the center he can keep in place, he has the center.

                              2. Protection of the Ra1 is quite near irrelevant. Yeah it helps a bit, but why the heck would white need it on move 2!?

                              3) 2.Bb2 threatens zilch unless black plays 1... e5, which I sometimes do. Black can exchange the pawns, but doesn't have to. I've played a slew of different lines as black, making them up as I went along; somehow this nonsense is popular in fast time controls. I always liked the look on white's face after 1... e5 2... f6, they're never amused. Or 1.b4 f5 2.Bb2 e6 etc, I'm in my usual Dutch which I know will work fine when white tries b4 nonsense in the regular lines...

                              4) If b5 is the big idea, it's a 9 dimes short of a dollar kind of opening. I don't see why black has to worry about b5, moreover I don't see why black should do anything more than ignore the ridiculous b-pawn. Black can just as easily set up a solid center like e5-f6-d5-c6-Be6-Bd6-Ne7-Nd7 (this is a formation, not a move order) and white has nothing. The only trick is for white to maximize development and then opening a line somewhere-not-the-queenside.
                              Developing Nc6 is just silly unless the knight already has a square to go to.

                              5) a3 slows down white's game further. Its justification is that 1.b4 weakened white's queenside, nothing else. Castling queenside is completely impracticable by the way.

                              6) e3-c4-Nc3 hm? Not very threatening.

                              7) Hm, well no. At move 1 you've no idea where black's king will be. How about black stays in the center? Your bishop is aiming the wrong way, your pawns are off target and you've no way to come through the center anytime soon. I sometimes play that solid formation I mentioned earlier, sticking the king on f7.

                              8) How will you trade a pawn I won't attack? By pushing it all the way to b6? I'll just take it as a freebie unless you support it, which takes a fifteen hecks of a lot of time and then I'll find a way to lock them up as a waste of time.
                              In the center, my pawns will have sway, white's won't. Trading central pawns is generally to white's advantage if black has more development to back it up. If there's anything to white's position, he'll have to keep the pawns on the board until he's got his ducks in a row. That generally takes a good bit longer for white than black.


                              There's not much in favour of the Polish. I've a near spotless record against it. I will admit losing one time in a 15 15 tournament at the club; my flag fell while I was at the bathroom having a doo-doo.
                              Have you read the Forum rules?

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                              Rimmer: It's called a "knight," actually, Holly...
                              Queeg: Knight to King Bishop three. Holly: Queen to Rook Eight. Checkmate.
                              Queeg: That's an illegal move. Holly: Oh, sorry. Queens don't move like that. I was thinking of poker.
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