Sicilian Defense – Alapin Variation
In Tata Steel Masters 2020, Jordan Van Forest was the lowest-rated chess player in a pool of 2700+ Elo “sharks”.
He knew that they would be out for his blood. To hold his own against these apex predators over the chessboard, he needed a weapon, sharp and powerful enough to put a dent on the play of even a Super-GM…
Tough decision to make, right?
After hours of preparation with this second, GM Johan-Sebastian Christiansen, Norway’s number three, did find the one he was looking for.
How did it go? After 13 rounds of action, finally, when the dust settled, he stood 4th among hundreds of top players including ahead of Anish Giri, Vishy Anand, Artemiev, and Alireza Firouzja.
It’s the Alapin Sicilian that starts with 1.e4 and 2.c3 against Black’s 1…c5. And it’s one of the strongest and most reputable Anti-Sicilians out there.
Count on GM Marian Petrov to demonstrate the accurate moves and must-know lines to convert your Alapin Sicilian attack into a full point.
Is this course for you?
Two of the most common replies to White’s 1.e4 is almost always the symmetric 1…e5 or the ambitious 1…c5. That means if you are a King’s Pawn opening player, it goes without saying that you need to master this opening.
What you will learn:
- Positional first, tactical second – The idea behind the initial 2.c3 move is to fight Black’s positional ideas with the Sicilian. Not only are you trying for temporary activity but also create long-term winning chances… also, keeping a bucket load of tactical attacks hidden from plain eyesight.
- Blackout of the comfort zone – Don’t let Black settle and get his usual Sicilian setup against White’s usual 2.Nf3 and 3.d4… drag him into the dark forest where 2+2=5!
- Secure an edge against rare lines – To refute the sheer power of the Alapin Sicilian, many grandmasters tried rare lines like 2…Qa5?! GM Petrov shows you how to deal with these moves while still developing your pieces and gaining a tempo (in this case, the strong and equally queer 3.Na3!).
- Neutralize Black’s play – If they are unprepared—which many of them will be against the Alapin Sicilian. Leave them lifeless without hope, confused and clueless as to what happens next… like Laznicka did against Dubov in the 2013 European Individual Championship.
GM Marian Petrov (FIDE 2537)
Is an accomplished professional chess coach, theorist, and Bulgarian champion for 2002 and 2017, as well as winner of many open tournaments around the world. Also a FIDE trainer and coach of the team of Wales at the last Olympiad in Baku in 2016. He graduated from the National Sports Academy in Sofia, Bulgaria with a Bachelor’s degree in Chess Pedagogy, a four-year undergraduate program designed to prepare top-level chess trainers.