|Price: £ 14,99
|Reviewed by: Erik
||Date: 14/1 2004
The Four Knights
- Bibliography and Introduction (2 pages)
- Spanish Four Knights with 4…Bb4 (10 pages)
- Spanish Four Knights with 4…Nd4 (15 pages)
- Spanish Four Knights: Sidelines (8 pages)
- Scotch Four Knights: Main Line (19 pages)
- Scotch Four Knights: Sidelines after 7…d5 (13 pages)
- Scotch Four Knights: Sidelines after 4.Nxd4 (14 pages)
- 4.d4 Bb4 (16 pages)
- The Belgrade Gambit (29 pages)
- Glek System with 4…Bc5 (15 pages)
- Glek System with 4…d5 (24 pages)
- Glek System: Sidelines (13 pages)
- Unusual Fourth Moves by White (9 pages)
As with his book on the Classical Dutch which I earlier had the chance to review, Pinski appears not to have any significant personal experiences with the
opening he writes about.
Some people would say that you have to play an opening to understand it, but I must say that in the case of Pinski's books his dedicated analysis of the material and clear structuring to a very large extent makes up for this drawback.
The Glek System
Black seems to be doing fine against all of Whites fourth move choices.
The coverage of the Glek System 4.g3 is in general very good with many new games by Hector and Glek himself. And it seems that Pinski has taken this system into his own repertoire. Although not with much success against the great Malaniuk, in the just ended Open Tournament in Krakow, where I
played as well. I would have liked to show the game here, but unfortunately the game is not available yet.
Spanish Four Knights
In the Spanish Four Knights 4.Bb5 the entertaining 4…Bd6!? has become popular lately. Here Pinski suggests Przedmojski's enterprising idea 5.g4!? with the point 5…Nxg4 6.Rg1 h5 7.h3 Nxf2 8.Kxf2 Bc5+ 9.d4 Nxd4 10.Be3 with White advantage. Better is 5…Bc5 after which Pinski gives 6.g5 Ng4 7.Rf1 h6 8.gxh6 gxh6 9.h3 Nf6 10.d3 d6 11.Rh1 as equal and 6.h3 Nd4 7.Bc4 (here I might suggest 7.Be3!?) as unclear.
Peter Svidler is one of the few top players who still use the Four Knights from time to time. In a recent rapid tournament
that was played after the book was published he did it with the following fine result:
Cap dAgde 2003
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nc3 Nc6 4.Bb5 Bb4 5.0-0 0-0 6.d3 Bxc3 7.bxc3 d6 8.Bg5 Qe7
9.Re1 Nd8 10.d4 Ne6 11.Bc1 c5 12.Bf1 Rd8 13.g3 Rb8
Here Pinski considers 13…Nf8 as better and gives 14.Nh4 Bg4 15.f3 Bd7 as “not completely
14.a4 Nf8 15.Nh4 Bg4 16.f3 Bd7 17.Ng2 Qe8 18.Bg5 Qe6 19.Ne3 h6 20.Bc4 Qh3
Not the best choice as Svidler proves with his next few
21.Bxf6 gxf6 22.f4 cxd4 23.f5 dxe3 24.Bf1 Bxf5 25.Bxh3 Bxh3 26.Qh5 Be6 27.Qxh6 d5 28.Rxe3 dxe4 29.Qxf6 Nh7 30.Qh6 Rbc8 31.Rxe4 Rxc3 32.Rxe5 Rc6 33.Rg5+ 1-0
The Belgrade Gambit 4.d4 exd4 5.Nd5 get a very good coverage mainly drawing on books by Monson and Gutman and a lengthy article in the German magazine Kaissiber. The conclusion is that Black can choose in which way he wants to equalize.
Question of Reversing Colours with 4.a3
Dealing with any symmetrical Opening, the question of reversing colours and the importance of the extra tempo to White becomes very interesting. In some cases Pinski indicates the importance of comparing lines in this way, but misses it in some of the more obvious places. In the tricky line with 4.a3 this is what it is all about.
The most notable case of not paying attention to the reversed colours is after 4.a3 d5 5.Bb5 where Pinski now explicitly gives 5…d4 as the only move without even mentioning 5…Nxe4 which gets his recommendation with reversed colours (without 4.a3 that is). In neither 6.Nxe5 or 6.Qe2 does the additional 4.a3 seem to have any significance i.e. 6. Qe2 Qd6 7.Nxe4 dxe4 8.Qxe4 Bd7 with an equal game.
After 4.a3 g6 (a reversed Glek system) Pinski gives the interesting 5.Nxe5!? as the best try for an advantage with the lines 5…Nxe5 6.d4 Nc6 7.d5 and now after either 7…Ne5 8.f4 or 7…Nb8 8.e5 Ng8 9.d6 with a strong attack.
However, he fails to mention it with reversed colours and perhaps more importantly that 7…Bg7 8.dxc6 bxc6 leads directly to a mainline in the Glek variation, and the sacrifice looses its attraction immediately.
It is a book players who uses the Four Knights as White will not want to do without, where as if you only play it as Black this book is less obligatory. Especially if you are in possession of
Emms' excellent "Play the Open Games as Black". Pinski has not much to add to the lines recommended for Black in that book.
A fine coverage of an old and deeply analysed Opening. There will be no need for another book on this topic for many years to come.
Recommended to those playing the Four Knights as White from ELO 1800 and up.