Alexey Kovalchuk – The Modernized Modern Benoni – ISBN 9789464201048 – 280 pages.
We all develop through childhood. Our expectations, dreams, fears, positive and negative character traits, love and attachment to things that have become important
for us. From childhood, most of us also have a love for chess.
There was a spark in our eyes to fight again and again, to play as long and as often as possible, to get stronger and win. We came to the chess clubs, the coach taught us the basics and then gave us more complex materials when our level of play improved. We studied the games of the maestros of the past and wanted to carry out
no less beautiful combinations, attacks, sacrifices, going all-out.
There came times when we understood in which positions we feel most comfortable, what suits us in a strategic game, and some of us became bewitched by tactical lines of struggle. Most of those who love dynamics try to seize the initiative as soon as possible and start an attack. As Black they do not want to be content with a draw. Such players usually started their way to the top of mastery with the King’s Indian Defense — a unique opening rich in history, like a phoenix, which was reborn countless times from ashes.
Over time, my attention focused on the Modern Benoni. In this opening, the bishop on g7 is the same icon that is the basis of the King’s Indian, but here it can operate on the whole a1-h8 diagonal instead of being locked in by its own pawn on e5, as usually happens in the King’s Indian. Black’s plan is outrageously simple: with pawns on d6 and c5, and sometimes b4, he creates a breakwater that opens up space for his favorite on g7.
My expectations from the opening were reinforced by two games by the greatest chess romantic of all time, Mikhail Tal. It seems to me that these games will help you, dear reader, to be imbued with love for this extraordinary opening.
**Available from 10/12/2020**