February Gambit / Counter Attack with the Alekhine Defence

The Alekhine Defence begins with 1. e4 Nf6 where Black immediately attacks the e4 pawn and seeks to unbalance the position and encourage the advance of White’s central pawns. It is hoped that the advance of White’s pawn centre will then be vulnerable to counter attack by Black.

Whilst not currently played by the World Champion Magnus Carlsen, the defence has recently been played by top challengers such as Fabiano Caruana, Hiakaru Nakamura and Sharkriyar Mamedyarov.

In the correspondence chess world,, the defence is not usually seen played by the top players which may indicate it is considered less sound than alternatives or it may simply be a case of the defence not being fashionable among the elite who tend to prefer the Sicilian Najdorf or e5 defences such as the Berlin. Take your search criteria down a notch though and in the sub 2500 elo bracket the Alekhine does begin to make an appearance.

We start our Alekhine thematic from the base position after 1.e4 Nf6 to give players a broader opportunity to explore the defence for Black and the options available to White who may wish to curb enthusiasm and not be so quick to chase the Black Knight around the board.

The tournament may be entered at https://schemingmind.com/minitournament.aspx?tournament_id=9707

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