[Event "FRA-ch Prelim Gr-A"] [Site "Besancon"] [Date "1999.08.22"] [Round "7"] [White "Lautier, Joel"] [Black "Degraeve, Jean Marc"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "A60"] [WhiteElo "2638"] [BlackElo "2542"] [Annotator "Stohl,Igor"] [PlyCount "55"] [EventDate "1999.??.??"] {Today, we talk about the tricky "Snake Benoni". This opening is different from the Modern Benoni because black's dark bishop will go to d6-c7-a5 which is not consistent with the theory of Modern Benoni. Moreover, if you do not have knowledge about this setup it is not easy to deal with "Snake Benoni". The French GM showed his way of dealing with this opening and was very successful in taming it.} 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 c5 4. d5 exd5 5. cxd5 Bd6 { This is the set-up of Snake Benoni where the bishop moves a zigzag route from f8 to a5 like a moving snake.} 6. Bg5 {Since black's bishop is positioned at d6, this is the best move to pressure the queen at d8.} O-O ({IF} 6... Be7 7. d6) ({IF} 6... Qa5 7. Bxf6 gxf6 8. Nf3) 7. Nf3 Re8 8. e3 {Choosing 8. e3 than 8. g3 is better to develop the white's bishop at d3 or e2. Now, black's kingside has not much piece to defend the king and black's queenside pieces are still undeveloped as well.} Bc7 {Here it is, the bishop will go to a5 square to pin white's knight at c3.} 9. d6 {I agree with this move, because it inhibits black's development.} Ba5 10. Bc4 Bxc3+ {This is the intention but it's not going to work since there is no follow up from black due to the congested position.} 11. bxc3 Nc6 12. O-O {Now, it is high time for black to play tactics here and create loopholes to black's position.} b6 13. Qd3 Na5 14. Bd5 Bb7 15. Bxb7 Nxb7 16. e4 {This is to connect the e4 pawn to d6 pawn and to pressure the knight at f6.} h6 17. Bh4 Qb8 {Attacks the d6 pawn and away from pin.} ({IF} 17... g5 18. Nxg5 hxg5 19. Bxg5 Nxd6 20. Rae1 Ndxe4 21. Rxe4 Rxe4 22. Bxf6 Qxf6 23. Qxe4 Rd8 24. c4) 18. e5 Nh7 19. Rae1 Re6 20. Nd2 {NOW, another pawn rolls forward the f-pawn.} Na5 21. f4 Nc6 22. Nf3 {Strong hold the linked pawn from f4 to d6. Playing white's idea, you must be patient and use a strategic plan to continue pressuring black's center and kingside.} g6 23. g4 {Another pawn takes action.} Re8 24. f5 g5 25. Bg3 {Black's position is critical now, while black's pieces at queenside are still sitting pretty.} Qb7 26. h4 {Pressure, pressure...then pressure...} gxh4 27. Bxh4 Kh8 28. Qd2 { Black resigned due to the weak pawn h6, if black plays 28... Rg8, 29. Qh6 29... Rg4+ 30. Kh2. The king at h8 cannot be defended since some black's pieces are still aty queenside.. Fantastic game by GM Joel Lautier, I hope you learned the ideas on how to deal with the tricky "Snake Benoni ''. Thanks and God Bless to all.} 1-0