Avrukh’s final 1.d4 volume: 2B


Any 1.d4 players in the house? If so, you may be interested to know that I am currently editing the final volume from the Doctor of d4 himself, and our original Grandmaster Repertoire author, Boris Avrukh!

As most of you know, the original volumes 1&2 (published in 2008 & 2010 respectively – how time flies…) have been revamped into the newer and upgraded volumes: 1A The Catalan, 1B The Queen’s Gambit, 2A King’s Indian & Grünfeld and finally volume 2B will complete the series. This final volume is subtitled “Dynamic Systems” (though I want to rename it “Dynamic Defences” – any opinions?) and will cover the Dutch, various Benoni systems not already covered in the series, the Benko & Budapest Gambits, and anything else which did not feature in the previous volumes.

So far, I am impressed by the vast number of improvements Avrukh has made over his previous work. This is not the time to give away any big novelties, but I can tell you there’s a useful change of direction in an important Dutch line, which I was able to use to good effect in a recent tournament game. I was also surprised when I started working on the Benko Gambit chapters and saw that the Fianchetto (which I have never been a great fan of against the Benko) has been replaced by the traditional main line of 6.Nc3 followed by e2-e4, Kxf1 and so on. After a panic-stricken few minutes of scouring the previous volumes for unwanted Fianchetto Benko transpositions (of which there are none, thankfully!), I am convinced that this is another excellent change.

To sum up, if you are a fan of Avrukh’s existing 1.d4 works, you will love this one too. With that being said, I will get back to editing it…

104 thoughts on “Avrukh’s final 1.d4 volume: 2B”

  1. Aha, now we know Andrew that the so called editing work is all a ruse to pilfer the top novelties for your own personal use.
    As long as you leave a few Avrukh bombshells for the rest of us I’ll be happy. Also in agreement on taking on the main line in the benko almost on principle…
    Any timeframe when we’ll see it?

  2. I am super curious to see what he offers against the Dutch! His old 6.b3 was kind of soft. Slightly unrelated but any news on forthcoming Negi e4 books?

  3. Always difficult to find the correct title.

    I dont think all in this volume are “dynamic defences”, and there is also dynamic defences in the previous volumes so i think itis not well adapted.
    By references to volume 1A, 1B & 2A i will prefer a generic like “d4. Other defences” and eventualy add ” (Dutch, Benko gambit, Budapest gambit & marginal lines)”

  4. One question regarding Avrukh’s books: Will you also do (in some future) an updated version of his Grünfeld books? I really like them and would very much appreciate that.

  5. Looking forward to this!

    Although, I usually like having the same structures as in the previous books just so I can further refine my experience in those lines while benefiting from subtle improvements. For example, I still use e3 in the QGA lines because I don’t like the position after 1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 dxc4 4.e4 b5.

    Also, players tend to be less familiar with something like the fianchetto Benko and there’s benefit from practicing similar structures. Of course, I’m sure there must be a good reason for the change in lines and it’ll probably be better once I get used to it. I’ve been happy with all my purchases from QC so far.

  6. Great, looking forward to this one! Even if I don’t play 1.d4 anymore, it still is interesting to see what Avrukh recommends against the Leningrad Dutch 🙂 .

  7. Get. Into. The Dungeon. NOW!
    … and someone please throw the keys away afterwards! Just make sure that Andrew can get access to food and sanitaries somehow.

    Serious question: Will there be some guidelines about the triangle system? I.e., 1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 c6 – I find 4. g3 dxc4 not satisfactory here, and transitioning to a Semi-Slav is not what I want either.

  8. @Tobias

    Tobias :
    Get. Into. The Dungeon. NOW!
    … and someone please throw the keys away afterwards! Just make sure that Andrew can get access to food and sanitaries somehow.

    Serious question: Will there be some guidelines about the triangle system? I.e., 1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 c6 – I find 4. g3 dxc4 not satisfactory here, and transitioning to a Semi-Slav is not what I want either.

    The main alternative to 4.e3 and 4.g3 and the move that is probably the most suitable for you is 4.Qc2 with the idea of playing 5.g3

  9. @Tobias
    Wasn’t this already covered in volume 1B on the Slav? I thought Avrukh’s recommendation was 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 c6 4.e3, followed by an early b2-b3. And of course he also treats the Stonewall.

  10. I should add, just for the benefit of anyone not familiar with the contents of each book, that volume 1B covers not only the Slav, but also the QGA, Chigorin, Albin and any other minor Queen’s Gambit lines. (But not the QGD, as this leads to the Catalan as covered in volume 1A.)

  11. Ray :
    Wasn’t this already covered in volume 1B on the Slav? I thought Avrukh’s recommendation was 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 c6 4.e3, followed by an early b2-b3. And of course he also treats the Stonewall.

    Andrew Greet :
    That is correct. Chapters 10 and 11 of GM 1B deal with exactly these set-ups.

    Btw, I’ve missed it too, when searching for it in 1A. I know there is basically 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 there, but looking for it in the Catalan section when so many transpositions back to Catalan are possible is quite natural imho – especiallay as you could reach it via 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 and not slav move order exclusively.
    Ntirlis’ and Lokanders books on 1.e4 e5 are so great because they have a lot of guidance and also a lot of explanations why certain lines have _not_ been choosen. Avrukhs books have the latter mainly only referring to his old books GM1 and GM2.

    conitnued in follow up post …

  12. part two:
    It would have been perfectly fine imho to write something at the very beginning of GM 1A about a triangle move order and why Avrukh does not prefer g3 there with a hint to look for it at a slav move order in 1B. Game could start 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 of course – and that particular move order is just not covered by Avrukh as far as I can see. In fact, I think it happens a lot with triangle players just to avoid the exchange slave.

    You have to work out on your own that you do not play 3.g3 here (a move played by Giri and others) here (as recommended after 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6), but 3.Nf3 to stay consistend with the overall repertoire. Otherwise play might continue 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.g3 c6 4.Nf3 d;c and by delaying Nf6 you are out of Avrukh’s books (but still very much in the spirit of the Catalan).

    Now handling the 4 volumes is already quite tricky. For Tarrasch for instance you have to look at GM 1A _and_ GM 1B, for Benoni at GM 1A and 2B and so on. I would love to have some overview how to handle all four books in 2B (where to find what, transpositions etc.) – now that 2B is ready for completion.

  13. with Q pawn opening there are a lot of possible transpositions . As you says, move order is a major issue if we want to keep consistency within our repertoire. It would be of great utility to have chapters making clear the move order problem in each book…. Even if i know that there is no universal solution ( except KI set-up) and that there is Always one move order that we want to avoid.

  14. Jakob Dwellinger

    I totaly fell in love with Quality Chess books 🙂 particularly the GM series.
    Since lots of older books currently receive a rework, I was wondering if there is any chance that we might see a rework of the following titles:

    GM Repertoire 3, 4, 5 on the English Opening by GM Marin
    GM Repertoire 10 on the Tarrasch Defence by GM Aagaard

    🙂 Also, I wanted to ask if there are any plans on Grandmaster-Repertoiring the books by GM Marin on the Open Games and Ruy Lopez as well as individual projects on publishing a GM series on the Petroff, QGD (with the risk of completely killing the game), the Ruy Lopez/Open Games as well as a response to 1.c4 🙂

    I’m really looking forward reading your answers! 😀 Thank you for all the effort that the QC-team puts into these books!


  15. @Reyk
    Nikos (not to mention his editor) indeed did a fine job of explaining ideas and move-order choices. One can always think of ways to add to opening books (strategic explanations, full illustrative games and so on), but each author has his own style and Avrukh’s strength has always been quality of analysis. As for the move order in GM 1A, it’s true that he doesn’t explicitly state how to enter the Catalan after 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6; and speaking as the editor, this did not (and still does not) strike me as something that was necessary, for a few reasons:
    Firstly, I am sure that most people who bought GM 1A already had the original GM 1, in which case they should know he favours 3.Nf3.
    And secondly, even if a reader had never read GM 1 and was building a 1.d4 repertoire from scratch, they would still have had to find their own ideas against the Triangle, Slav and all other defences in the meantime.

  16. To both Reyk and RVY, regarding the idea of some kind of ‘super index’ in the final volume – I take your point that this could be useful, but the book is already shaping up to be larger than expected so we probably won’t have space for anything extra. I try to be as helpful as possible when pointing out transpositions during editing; for instance, instead of merely saying “this is covered in Volume X”, I usually include a chapter and sometimes an exact page number, so I hope this makes things at least a bit easier.

  17. @Jakob Dwellinger

    Hi Jakob,
    Thanks for your comments.

    We do not plan to re-work GM Repertoires 3,4,5 or 10. On the English Opening, I would rather have a new original book rather than re-working an old one. And the same is true in general.

    On the Open Games and QGD, Nikos did a fine job in his ‘Playing 1.e4 e5’ and ‘Playing 1.d4 d5’ books. Not GM Repertoires I know, but still fine repertoires.

    Sorry it’s all “no” so far. We may well have new books one day on some of the openings you mention, but nothing I can announce now.

    Though we do already have a GM Repertoire reply to 1.c4 included in ‘GM Repertoire 19: Beating Minor Openings’ by Victor Mikhalevski, who is a superb analyst. Victor’s repertoires tend to hold up excellently for years (with the Open Spanish as another example).

  18. An Ordinary Chessplayer

    “Super Index” sounds pretty useful.

    One of the first things I do with an openings book is mouse the index of variations into a pgn. It is not much effort. I don’t have the Avrukh books, but maybe someone who has all of them would be willing to do this super step. And maybe Quality Chess would be willing to host an edited version of this file. Not to give away any significant content, but just to point the way through the thicket of transpositions. Cutting off arbitrarily at move 5 or move 7 (or judge on a per chapter basis) could be a reasonable compromise.

    Actually something like this would make a great freebie on Forward Chess. 0.05% of the book for free might just sell the other 99.95%. It’s certainly worth an experiment, and see how the cost/benefit plays out.

  19. I agree, the super-index would be a great service and I strongly doubt that it would reduce # of units sold.
    Thanks for all the clarifications on the Triangle, by the way.

  20. For those who are interested the forward chess webpage has 1A on the Catalan on sale today (today only) as part of their Dec promotion for $9.99 (plus vat if you are in Europe).

  21. @TD
    It will be included in the final volume 2B. Indeed, it was one of the bigger omissions which we overlooked in the original GM 2, so we made sure to remind Boris about it at an early stage.

  22. No trasposition in the benko? What about 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 0-0 5.Nc3 c5? If white plays 6.d5 d6 it is highly likely to transpose into a benko for example Nf3 b5. Also against 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 0-0 5.Nc3 d6 6.Nf3 c5 white can’t play 7.d5 if he wants to avoid the tansposition. Does it mean this book will cover 7.0-0 ignoring c5 and transposing in some sort of of simmetric English?

  23. Indeed, after Nxb5 I am not convinced by Black’s ‘Benko-style’ compensation along the b-file.

    Black can try …c5 on move 3 or 4, since d4-d5 can be met by …b5, with a better version of what Davide suggested. But Boris already considered this plan, and recommended dxc5 against it in GM 2A – so once again, there’s no Benko transposition.

  24. Forget Kramnik (with all due respect, of course). How about “A Black Opening Repertoire According to Timur Gareyev”?

    That might entail a health risk to the author, however, so maybe it’s not such a great idea.

  25. Seth :
    Forget Kramnik (with all due respect, of course). How about “A Black Opening Repertoire According to Timur Gareyev”?
    That might entail a health risk to the author, however, so maybe it’s not such a great idea.

    What openings does he play?

  26. Thomas :
    Ok, I give up and opt for something completely different: A repertoire based on Ulf Andersson’s games.

    New in Chess did that about a year ago ?

  27. A “Play the Grünfeld” Grandmaster Guide book would be interesting. Eight years since GM11/12 and would be nice to have fianchetto with …Cxd5 instead of …c6/d5 😀

  28. Well, the books of Avrukh are really good of course, no doubt about it. A good extension might be Peter Svidler’s Grünfeld course on chess24.@Leon Trotsky

  29. I’ve been out of the loop for nearly a year. I understand the Najdorf is a “long-term project” (as in whenever). But with Negi going for a Ph.D. at MIT are the final two volumes of 1 e4 now history? If not, what are the plans? Sorry for asking you to retread the same old questions, but I have an interest in obtaining these final three volumes before I die. My repertoire would be complete. Thanks.

  30. @Mark
    With the Avrukh book. Proper editing and checking missing lines and updates. The usual stuff. And a bit of winter illness :-(. I hope we are going to print this week…

  31. Thomas :

    The fifth volume will be out in the spring, I think.


    Thomas you forgot to ask which Spring.
    I’m presuming 2019 Northern Hemisphere but who knows-Spring in Scotland officially ends June 21st if you want to plan the tickertape parade though personally its Negi 6 which is the biggie for me so I’m keeping my powder dry

  32. We are making steady progress but we are not ready to announce a date. The excerpt only comes when we have a finished file which is ready to printing, so clearly we are not yet at that stage.

  33. Negi 5 is minor lines. I think June at the latest, but my track record is…

    Taimanov, we are talking April probably.

    2B will be in March with the Kotov book, which has been sent off to print.

    No excerpts until Colin returns.

    At QC I looked around the other guys one editorial and realised we all had grey beards…

  34. If you all shave them off then nobody will have a grey beard! (And you might look vibrant and youthful, which is not to say you don’t at the moment………


  35. @James2
    Jacob is being modest as he doesn’t seem to have many greys, whereas I’m unmistakably “salt and pepper”. John and Colin are the same, but without the pepper. 😉

  36. I really would like to see a repertoire GM book on the Kan sicilian. I don’t remember a good book on that subject since many years.With Smirin as writer of course … 😉

  37. I remember last Grünfeld book with taking on d5 with knight against Fianchetto Variation was 2011, most offer …c6/d5 which is solid and good. But the knight takes is spicier, would be nice to see that in Grandmaster Guide Grünfeld 😀

  38. Jaroslaw Krassowizkij

    Just finished studying Avrukh 1.d4 Series. I can commend the author to indeed having fixed the Major issues found in the last 10 years against his prior suggestions. Though I have 2 Points I would like to Mention:
    1.Is it possible to add an update with the 9. … Re8 10.Bf4 Bf5 in the Benoni? 10. … Bf5 existed prior to 2016, so it is sad it was not even mentioned.
    2.Move order issue. One of the big changes was that Avrukh tackles Benko with the mainlines (where he did a great work tbh). Due to this, since he plays Benko without g3, he added dxc5 instead of d5 in KID moveorders [e.g. 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 c5 5.dxc5!?].
    But in his new book 2B (see Chapter 8) he shows 1.d4 g6 2.c4 Bg7 3.Nf3 continuing with the Coverage of 3. … f5. But should black Play 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.g3 (as we Play regular KID) c6, which results in the wrong Grünfeld line. Shouldn’t it be 1.d4 g6 2.c4 Bg7 3.g3 instead?
    I know it is a very minor nitpick, since to ‘abuse’ it black has to be ready to play several different Openings, but hypothetical we are speaking about a GM Repertoire so I guess I am entitled to it 🙂
    Ps: Big Fan of QC <3

  39. @Jaroslaw Krassowizkij

    My second attempt to post this.
    Another problem with Avrukh’s move order in book 2B, Ch8 is Benko:
    1.d4 g6 2.c4 Bg7 3.Nf3 Nf6 (missing in Avrukh, as you pointed out.) 4.g3 (what else? ) 4…c5. Now 5.d5 b5 leads to g3 Benko, while playing in the style of “Benko Attempt” chapter with 5.dxc5 is probably not so good because of 5…Qa5+, since our knight is already on f3. Other (and probably best) options on move five are 5.Nc3 or 5.Bg2, but this takes us far away from Avrukh’s book.

    Your approach with 3.g3 helps with the Grunfeld, but what to do after:
    1.d4 g6 2.c4 Bg7 3.g3 c5. Again 4.d5 b5 is the g3 Benko we want to avoid, while 4.dxc5 is not good because long black diagonal is open (compared to “Benko Attempt” chapter, black knight is not on f6). Probably best is 4.Nf3 transposing to the main lines of English, but that is a different story

  40. Thanks Jaroslaw and Ivica for pointing out these minor move-order issues. Although Avrukh provides excellent coverage against the KID, Benoni/Benko, Modern and Leningrad Dutch, it’s clearly a difficult task to come up with a move order against 1…g6 and 2…Bg7 which anticipates every possible system that Black may convert to, while maintaining full compatibility with each of his recommendations against all the main defences.

    Here’s how I would approach the position after 1.d4 g6 2.c4 Bg7. Either you play 3.Nf3 as Avrukh suggests, or 3.g3. Each one will maintain compatibility with the repertoire against certain defences, but could get ‘move-ordered’ against others. Think about what your priorities are, and find a back-up line which you would be able to play in the rare instances where someone uses one of these tricky move orders against you. Take into account the repertoire of your opponent as well, when considering which opening they are more likely to transpose into. There is no magic solution that I can think of, so you just need to find a suitable compromise somewhere which works best for you.

  41. Benjamin Fitch

    There’s also simply 1.d4 g6 2.e4. (Lots of repertoire books to help from there.) Black might even be counting on you being “a 1.d4 player who wouldn’t do that”. I’m guessing that even if you go on to block your c-pawn with a knight, you won’t be punished as a 1.d4 heretic in the hereafter (or in the game).

  42. @Benjamin Fitch
    Sure, if you are comfortable with this then it’s another possible idea. Although these move-order issues present a challenge, things are also not so simple for Black. For instance, if Black happens to be a Benko enthusiast who gets the bright idea of starting with 1.d4 g6 2.c4 Bg7 in order to ‘trick’ the Avrukh follower into one of the delayed …c5 lines, he will also have to be ready to play a main-line King’s Indian or Modern Defence, which demands a lot of work from him. So it’s useful for White to have some sort of back-up line ready, but also take into account the opponent and what type of game they are likely aiming for.

  43. @Jacob Aagaard
    I also like White, but we are now almost in one of the main lines of English, if you meant:
    1.d4 g6 2.c4 Bg7 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.g3 c5 5.Bg2!?
    Actually, the game can easily transpose to what Marin calls Closed System in GM Repertoire 5.
    E.g. 5…cxd4 6.Nxd4 0-0 7.0-0 Nc6 8.Nc3 Nxd4 9.Qxd4 d6 and we are in Chapter 7 of Marin.
    Of course, there are some details White will have to take into account. For example, if we do not like Black playing possible 7…d5, we should play 7.Nc3 and castle later.

  44. @Ivica
    I think Jacob was referring to 1.d4 g6 2.c4 Bg7 3.g3 c5 4.d5 b5 5.Bg2.
    Yes, the line you mention is a well-known theoretical line (and an early …Qc7 too), so I assume he probably would go a bit further on that than “optically like White” 🙂

  45. Understandable; but the top players usually go for a quick ..Qc7 anyway, and that has proved to be more of a stumbling block for White in general…

  46. Gunnar Berg Hanssen

    This seems like a suitable moment to draw attention to a funny game of mine, played a long time ago. Not without mistakes but certainly entertaining, as only chess can be.
    Why this game may belong on these pages is because of Boris Avrukh’s excellent work 1.d4 Dynamic Systems. It all starts on page 541. We are talking about 1.d4 b5 2.e4 a6 3.Nf3 Bb7 4.Bd3 Nf6. All this happened in the famous game Karpov-Miles, Skara 1980. Then World champion Karpov played 5.Qe2, and a tense battle followed, leading to victory for the great Anthony Miles. Instead of Karpov’s 5.Qe2, Boris Avrukh recommends 5.e5 in the book 1.d4 Dynamic Systems, 2B. And that’s what I played back in 1985 as White against the Norwegian master Stein Jensen! The whole game is to be found in Norsk Sjakkblad issue 1, 1986, p. 28, http://www.sjakk.no/filarkiv/nsf/norsk_sjakkblad/arkiv/nsb%201986-1.pdf
    In Avrukh’s book he followed my game against Stein Jensen for a few more moves. After 5.e5 Nd5 6.Ng5 Nb4 7.Bxh7 Rxh7 8.Nxh7, Boris Avrukh gives 8…Be4N. However, it’s not a N, but was played against me back in 1985 by Mr. Jensen.
    As recommended by Avrukh, I played 9.Ng5, and the game of mine, and Avrukh’s analysis as well, continue with 9…Nxc2 10.Kf1 Bg6 11.h4 Nxa1 12.h5 Bxb1 13.Qf3 Bxa2 14.d5. Finally, my game and Avrukh’s analysis split. My opponent played 14…Bxd5 and the game concluded with the moves 15.Qxd5 e6 16.Qf3 Qe7 17.Qxa8 Qd8 18.Qf3 Qe7 19.Nxf7 Qxe7 20.Qa8 Bc5 21.Qxb8 1-0. Avrukh only mentions 14…

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top