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Publisher: Chess-Evolution, 2013, Pages: 264, Paperback

It’s in 1834 that the French champion Labourdonnais played 4...e5 for the first time. But the Kalashnikov, that promises Black dynamic compensation in exchange for the apparent weakness of the d5 square and the backwards d6 pawn, is a decidedly modern opening. Th at’s why the opening only started gaining in popularity in the late 1980’s, in particular thanks to the famous Russian grandmaster Evgeny Sveshnikov. Ever since, many top level players have added it to their repertoire: Pavel Tregubov, Alexei Fedorov, Etiennen Bacrot, Alexander Moiseenko and let’s not forget the most famous one amongst them, Teimour Radjabov. In France, there was a fashion effect after the fantastic victory by Igor Nataf over John Nunn in 1999. Ever since then, we have ourselves, Matthieu and Fabien, been regularly playing it over the years and we had very correct results.
We always thought that the Kalashnikov was not well-known enough and that its potential was underestimated. There are very few books about it and they are not recent. That’s why we got the idea of writing a new book about this opening, in order to share our passion and our ideas. When Arkadij Naiditsch gave us the opportunity to do it, we didn’t hesitate. We were initially planning to only build a Black repertoire, but we quickly realized it would be a shame to not reveal all — or let’s say most of the lines and ideas that are concealed within the Kalashnikov. On an unbiased basis, we present objective and exhaustive analyses of every line, with numerous novelties. Our goal is for our reader to build a complete Black repertoire and for him not to be afraid of facing the Kalashnikov with White any longer. We know what we are talking about: as we are both 1.e4 players, we could oft en have been confronted to this opening, but as many others, we have oft en chosen to avoid it by playing 3.Nc3 or 3.Bb5. Since the beginning of this project, namely in 2011, we decided to test our analyses in practice, with both colours. Cornette, M — Roy Chowdhury, S, Vandoeuvre 2011 1–0, Cornette, M — Pap, M, Metz 2012 1–0 with White, but also, Barbosa, E — Libiszewski, F, Cannes 2011 0–1, Korneev, O — Cornette, M, Metz 2012 0–1 and more recently Korneev, O — Libiszewski, F, Bagnara Calabra 2013 0.5–0.5 with Black are a part of the results of these tests. These games are all featured in this book. With the translation of our book “The Complete Kalashnikov” into English, we have performed some updates to it. Following some feedback we received about the first edition, we carried out some small changes, added news games and of course found some improvements. We hope that our analyses will off er you as much pleasure and success as they did to us.
Hope you enjoy it,
GM Fabien Libiszewski and GM Matthieu Cornette,
Bordeaux the 21th February 2013.


Complete Kalashnikov