The long road leading to Grandmaster Repertoire 10 – The Tarrasch Defence seems to be coming to an end. The boys will upload the book tomorrow or maybe even today. Meanwhile I have been testing the lines in the European Team Championship in Greece. So far two draws, against strong opposition. As I have managed to win both of my white games, this has been a great success. Today awaits Armenia and either Akopian or Sargissian. Chances are the Tarrasch – and especially my memory – will be seriously tested.

Update from Scotland: We reckon Jacob has White against Akopian. Live games can be watched here.

  1. student
    November 7th, 2011 at 09:45 | #1

    ๐Ÿ™‚ Great! Good luck with the Tarrasch!

  2. Jacob Aagaard
    November 7th, 2011 at 13:23 | #2

    As John correctly pointed out, I am White today. Against Akopian and on a live board!

  3. boki
    November 7th, 2011 at 16:54 | #3

    very unfortunate game for Jacob today, but he should have played a Qualitychess repertoire (either Marin or Avrukh) ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. student
    November 7th, 2011 at 17:09 | #4

    I have a weird question, may I change my order from paperback to hardcover (if they are available at the same time)?

  5. James
    November 7th, 2011 at 18:09 | #5

    Great news about Tarrasch! Been looking forward to getting this book for a while now. Unlucky with your game today Jacob, no shame in losing to Akopian though, he’s a quality player as well.

  6. Jacob Aagaard
    November 7th, 2011 at 18:16 | #6

    Awful game. It is ok to change the order. Just e-mail Claire with your order details and tell her what you want. I will not warn her.

  7. Pierre
    November 7th, 2011 at 18:46 | #7

    Will the book “Amateur vs grandmaster” (or whatever the exact title is :)) be out in the next weeks ?


  8. Pac
    November 8th, 2011 at 06:51 | #8

    Looking forward to the Tarrasch book

  9. Daniel
    November 8th, 2011 at 08:05 | #9

    Finally! I will be getting this in hardcover for sure. When are Psakhis and GM vs Amateur coming out?

  10. Gilchrist is a Legend
    November 8th, 2011 at 08:49 | #10

    I have a feeling that if the book is to be sent to printer this week, then websales would be sent on the 5th December. Just a guess.

  11. Gilchrist is a Legend
    November 8th, 2011 at 08:56 | #11

    GM10, that is.

  12. Jacob Aagaard
    November 8th, 2011 at 10:08 | #12



    On Friday we send shipments to the shops. Websales should go out on Monday! Look forward to these ones.

  13. Pierre
    November 10th, 2011 at 14:00 | #13

    Thanks, that is great news : a whole new way not to work on my PhD !

  14. Phil Collins
    November 11th, 2011 at 08:20 | #14

    Jacob, what went wrong against Shengelia?

  15. Gilchrist is a Legend
    November 11th, 2011 at 09:42 | #15

    Will GM10 include moves other than 3. Nf3 and 3. Nc3?

  16. John Shaw
    November 11th, 2011 at 11:57 | #16

    Gilchrist is a Legend :
    Will GM10 include moves other than 3. Nf3 and 3. Nc3?

    Hi GiaL,
    After 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 GM 10 does not cover lines other than 3.Nf3 and 3.Nc3. I am not a Tarrasch expert at all, but what lines does White have that would not transpose to a Nc3 or Nf3 set-up? I am probably showing how little I know about the Tarrasch, but I can’t think of a serious line. 3.g3 c5!? and surely White will soon put a knight on its best square. Or 3.cxd5 exd5 and then 4.Nc3 or 4.Nf3 transpose to the T after 4…c5; maybe 4.Bf4 is independent, but it doesn’t look scary.

  17. Jesse
    November 11th, 2011 at 19:16 | #17
  18. Gilchrist is a Legend
    November 11th, 2011 at 21:25 | #18

    The link does not open when I click it for some reason. Is the link defective?

  19. Jesse
    November 11th, 2011 at 22:18 | #19

    The link behaves differently in each browser. In firefox it’ll pop up a dialogue box asking if you want to open the file, or save it. Chrome just downloads it.

    Maybe someone else could tell us if it’s working.

  20. Gilchrist is a Legend
    November 11th, 2011 at 22:37 | #20

    I was able to download the excerpt via Firefox, so it works now. Thanks.

    If the book is to be published on 9 December, will the websales be posted on Monday the 12th?

  21. Gilchrist is a Legend
    November 12th, 2011 at 04:18 | #21

    @John Shaw

    I suppose that there are not very many deviations with regards to the Tarrasch complex unlike other openings such as the Grรผnfeld, which makes studying this book more appealing.

    I pre-ordered this book and am eagerly awaiting its publication. I read the new excerpt and it appears as if this opening will experience quite a revival.


  22. Alekhine Power
    November 13th, 2011 at 11:49 | #22


    I see that you have a sense for humor when you wrote following cover blurb for never-up-coming “The King’s Gambit” by John Shaw:

    “GM John Shaw has been Scottish Champion three times ๐Ÿ™‚ He used to play the King’s Gambit and promises to do so again.” ๐Ÿ™‚

    From FIDE rating list, 01st November 2011 for SCOTLAND, we can see a lot of strong GMs with Elo higher than 2600, even higher than 2700 points:

    1. Rowson, Jonathan – Elo 2581
    2. Motwani, Paul – Elo 2494
    3. Arakhamia-Grant, Ketevan – Elo 2443
    4. McNab, Colin A – Elo 2438
    5. Shaw, John ๐Ÿ™‚ – Elo 2424 (this is IM rating or GM rating?)
    6. Dearing, Eddie – Elo 2411
    7. McKay, Roderick M – Elo 2376
    8. Gourlay, Iain – Elo 2351 0
    9. Burns-Mannion, Stephen R – Elo SCO 2351
    10. Pritchett, Craig W – Elo 2343

    Yeah, many KG games by the author in Mega2011 also ๐Ÿ™‚

    Shaw,John K (2280) – Mannion,Stephen R (2355) [C34]
    Greenwood op Greenwood (3), 1995

    1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 h6 4.b3 Nf6 5.e5 Ne4 6.Bb2 Be7 7.Be2 Bh4+ 8.Kf1 Be7 9.d3 Ng5 10.Qd2 0โ€“0 11.Qxf4 d6 12.Nbd2 Nc6 13.d4 ยฝโ€“ยฝ

    What to say, a memorable game hard fought to the bare kings ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. Erik
    November 13th, 2011 at 18:04 | #23

    I know this probably isn’t the place to ask this question. But, couldn’t find a place to contact u guys…

    Will there be a 1. e4 gm rep book? If so is there any tentative time frame for release?

  24. Jacob Aagaard
    November 14th, 2011 at 13:38 | #24

    Yes, we will begin publishing 1.e4 books next year.

  25. Michel Barbaut
    November 14th, 2011 at 14:30 | #25

    OK, the Tarrasch book is only about 1.d4,d5 2.c4,e6 3.Nc3,c5 but do you say (even quickly) how best reaching this defence (no theory but just explanations) if white starts with 1.c4 or 1.Nf3, that is to say are there wrong ways to try to reach a Tarrasch defence ? i.e : developped your Ng8 too quickly, playing …c5 too fast, and so on.
    Or may be in a newsletter ?
    Practical questions because it will be my first games with the opening and I would like to reach it as often as possible, and I think I’m not the only one !

  26. Jacob Aagaard
    November 14th, 2011 at 17:06 | #26

    @Michel Barbaut
    The basic idea is that this should be covered in Avrukh’s book, but I can mention something in a newsletter.

  27. Waldorf
    November 14th, 2011 at 19:17 | #27

    Maybe I misunderstand you, but actually if White doesn`t follow up with d2-d4 then you can`t get a tarrasch:
    1. c4 e6 2. g3 or Nf3 d5 then White can decline a Tarrasch with b2-b3
    1. c4 e6 2. Nc3 d5 and again White decides
    Be aware of the following move order:
    1. c4 Nf6 2. Nc3 e6 gives White the opportunity to play e2-e4 and ypu can get no more Tarrasch.

    After 1. Nf3 then 1…d5 is a natural response if you aim for a Tarrasch

  28. Michel Barbaut
    November 14th, 2011 at 19:46 | #28

    I was just asking how to reach the tarrasch position at best, if white let you do so (in case white is playing d4 of course) but without allowing white to much if black switch moves.

  29. Patrick
    November 14th, 2011 at 21:07 | #29

    Your best bet, if you are a Tarrasch player or any form of QGD player that plays 2…e6, is to play 1…e6.

    There is no way to force the Tarrasch. If you may recall from Aagaard’s book from 2002, there is an entire chapter on the Reti. When Waldorf says White can “decline a Tarrasch with b2-b3”, that’s basically what White is playing, The Reti.

    Part of understanding an opening is also understanding the various nuances. One plus side of the Tarrasch is you basically don’t have the Catalan to deal with. You play the Tarrasch! The main line against the Tarrasch is basically the same thing as a Catalan (i.e. White plays d4, c4, and Fienchettos his Light-Squared Bishop).

    The Reti is something that just about any 1…d5 player has to deal with. Which version depends on what you play. Other openings might have to be accounted for, again, depending on what you play.

    Take the following examples:

    Tarrasch Players – Basically just need to know the …e6 Reti (either Open Reti or Closed Reti, Black’s choice). Catalan is not a factor.

    QGD Orthodox Players – Need to know a line of the …e6 Reti and the Catalan

    Slav Players (i.e. Myself) – Fianchettoing the King’s Bishop is ineffective here for White. The main sideline to know is the Reti Slav (i.e. 1.Nf3 d5 2.c4 c6 or 1.c4 c6 2.Nf3 d5).

    Semi-Slav Players – Depends on the move order. If you arrive at the Semi-Slav via 2…c6 (like I used to), you have the Reti-Slav, Exchange Slav, and Slow Slav to deal with. If you arrive at the Semi-Slav via 2…e6, then you are dealing with the …e6-Reti, the Catalan, and the Exchange QGD (or Marshall Gambit, 4.e4, if 3…c6 instead of 3…Nf6).

    Then, of course, all of these have to deal with d4-sidelines, like the London, Colle, Torre, Trompowsky or Hodgson Attack, depending on move order and whether you do 1…d5 or 1…Nf6, etc.

    So long story short, no matter how you try to do it, you won’t always get a Tarrasch Defense every time you face a non-e4 opener.

  30. Gilchrist is a Legend
    November 19th, 2011 at 09:17 | #30

    I have a question about the released newsletter–what is Avrukh’s response to the extremely topical variation in the Fianchetto Grรผnfeld 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. g3 Bg7 4. Bg2 d5 5. cxd5 Nxd5 6. Nf3 Nb6 7. 0-0 Nc6 8. e3 0-0 9. Nc3 Re8 10. Re1 a5 now, with regards especially to the line mentioned in the newsletter, i.e. 11. Qe2 Be6 12. Rd1 Bc4 13. Qc2 Nb4 14. Qb1 e5 in the game Nyzhnyk-Mecking?

  31. November 19th, 2011 at 19:43 | #31

    I’m looking forward to the Tarrasch book very much. Are the web sales on the way any time soon?

  32. Jacob Aagaard
    November 21st, 2011 at 08:05 | #32

    @Alan Hartley
    They should go out on the 12th of December as far as I understand.

    @Gilchrist is a Legend
    I honestly don’t know. Look at Boris Gelfand’s games – he has been willing to take on this line – but it is not easy to guess everything he has intended.

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