Category Archives: Benko Gambit

Budapest TCh 2012-13 Rd9-Szepes,Tamas(HUN)

Budapest TCh 2012-13 Rd9 Board 2
My RAC teammate Szepes,Tamas also faced a Benko Gambit but played a much nicer game than me and won in style. 

Szepes,Tamas (2228) – Lisznyai,Sandor (2192) 
Benko Gambit[A58]
BUD tch Lilienthal 12/13 (9.2), 10.03.2013

Position 1
Black has released white’s a,b pawns in return for having a strong Nd3 in the heart of white’s position. What do you suggest for white?

White to Play


Position 2
The game has gone well for white as the b-pawn has made a winning charge down the queenside. It only remains to find a suitable finishing plan. What do you suggest for white?(More than one solution-find the most convincing move)

White to Play


BTCH Div I Rd9 2012-13

Division I-Tabanyi Spartacus II 7.5-RAC I 4.5
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Board RAC I Spartacus II
1 Halasz,Tamas 1 Metaxasz,Vaszilisz 0
2 Szepes,Tamas 1 Lisznyai,Sandor 0
3 Suranyi,Pal 0 Borda,Lajos 1
4 Yip,Michael 0.5 Szentmihalyi,T 0.5
5 Makai,Matyas 0 Pal,Mihaly 1
6 Kun,Sandor 0 Vitalyos,Marton 1
7 Gaspar,Laszlo 1 Csillag,Janos 0
8 Rajcsanyi,Peter 0.5 Gerendai,L 0.5
9 Nemeth,Otto 0 Meszaros,Attila 1
10 Shan,He Jia Rita 0.5 Katona,G 0.5
11 Csizmadia,F 0 Balazs-Piri,Robert 1
12 Aranyi,Jozsef 0 Felmery,Tamas 1
4.5 7.5

I forgot my scoresheet at the tournament site so the game was reconstructed. Hopefully I got the moves right. My opponent had a hard to spell name which I don’t remember.

RAC I lost the match 7.5-4.5

  • Board 1 IM Halasz,T won(black with RRB which overcame QB)
  • Board 2 Szepes,T won(white against a Benko. Szepes was down an exchange for 2 strong queenside passed pawns won nicely as black had  a weak king)
  • Board 3 Lost (Suranyi,P lost to Borda,L. Suranyi fell behind in development and then exposed his pieces)
  • Board 4 (me)
The Team Captain brought his camera but there was only enough charge to take a couple of pictures.

Here’s the game.(Better analysis coming soon) 

Yip,Michael (2087) – Szentmihalyi,Tamas (2051)
Benko Gambit 8.g3[A58]
BUD tch Lilienthal 12/13 (9.4), 10.03.2013

I stumbled into a won position with some non-special play and then noticed the winning move quickly. Then, I looked for an even better one. 

Sadly my improved ‘win’ had an obvious hole in the idea and after, I struggled to make a draw.

Position 1
The critical position arises after black took the b-pawn with 29…Qxb5. The queen is now unprotected if only Bb4 could find a way to move to make a discovered attack.

White to Play


Portisch L vs Benko Gambit Biel 1976

GM Master Class
Portisch,L used a quick double fianchetto with Nh3-f4 against Geller’s Benko gambit in the Biel 1976 Interzonal and won a tough game.

Portisch,Lajos (2625) – Geller,Efim P (2620)
Benko g3 Fast b3[A58]
Biel Interzonal Biel (3), 13.07.1976

Position 1
Black had earlier sacrificed the exchange for counterplay and now white is playing to convert the material advantage. What do you suggest for white?

White to Play


Trends in the Benko 2012(TWIC 944)

Here is a recent game by Danish GM PH Nielsen. GM Schandorff recommends the 5.f3 line to fight the Benko but I don’t agree with this choice. Now this game shows a nice way(12.a4) to play against the tricky gambit.

GM Nielsen,PH
Nielsen became an International Grandmaster in 1994. He won the Danish Chess Championship five times: in 1996, 1999, 2001, 2003, and 2008.
He played for Denmark in seven Chess Olympiads, three times on top board.- Wikipedia Peter_Heine_Nielsen

Nielsen,PH (2662) – Zaragatski,I (2460)
Fianchetto 12.a4[A58]
Bundesliga 2012–13 Baden Baden GER (6), 09.12.2012(TWIC 944)

Position 1
Things are going well for white. The e5 pawn shuts out Bh8 and white stands fully mobilized. What is the next step?

  • 21.e6 pushing forwards for the attack
  • 21.ed opening the e-file up for infiltration
  • Something else

White to Play


Veriying Schandorff: The Benko Gambit 5.f3

GM Schandorff proposes the line 5.f3 for the task of beating up the Benko Gambit in Playing 1.d4 The Indian Defences(Quality Chess 2012). There is a key sacrificial (12.Nfd5!?) idea at the heart of the active 5…e6 response that needs close checking.

He devotes three games to this idea and has some far reaching analysis that I checked as part of the analysis of the following recent game.

Croad,N (2255) – Samhouri,B (2244)
5.f3 e6[A57]
40th Olympiad Open Istanbul TUR (7.43), 04.09.2012[Yip]

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 b5 4.cxb5 a6 5.f3 Key point. This line is not so popular but Schandorff believes it is due for a comeback.[Yip] 5…e6 The most challenging defence.[Yip] 6.e4 exd5 7.e5 Qe7 8.Qe2 Ng8 9.Nc3 Bb7 10.Nh3 c4 11.Nf4 Qc5 Diagram

Key point. This is a fantastic idea that is analyzed in games 59-61 in Playing 1.d4: Indian Defences by Schandorff(Quality Chess 2012). This sacrificial idea is one of the backbone ideas behind the f3 repertoire.

Key Position 1
White is indicating an attack with his last move. White has the strong bishops and mobile pawns for the piece while black has trouble getting the queenside pieces to coordinate. What do you think black should do? Here I am proposing  a small improvement for black. Maybe you will find it too.

Black to Play


Budapest TCh Rd1-Benko Gambit

The Benko Gambit has been getting a lot of attention lately.

Here is an interesting effort from the Budapest TCh Rd1.

Farkas,Lajos Dr (2228) – Juhasz,Mark (2155) [A59]
BUD tch Lilienthal 12/13 Budapest (1), 30.09.2012
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 b5 4.cxb5 a6 5.bxa6 Bxa6 6.Nc3 g6 7.Nf3 d6 8.e4 Bxf1 9.Kxf1 Bg7 10.g3 0–0 11.Kg2 Nbd7 12.a4 Qb6 13.Qe2 Rfc8N

Critical Position 1
Black has just played the novelty 13…Rfc8. Normally black would play ..Rfb8 with play on the a.b files. Now black can support …c4 and follow with …Nc5-d3 with light square play. How do you assess the move? What should white do next? Seek a refuation? Play a normal move and keep the tension?

White to Play

Critical Position 2
The position is complicated. What is the right plan for black?

Black to Play