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raskerino ♡ 164 ( +1 | -1 )
Grr... the Alapin is killing me I'm having some trouble against this line (I'm black): 1.e4 c5 2.c3 d5 3.exd5 Qxd5 4.d4 Nf6 5.Nf3 Bg4 6.Be2 e6 7.h3 Bh5 8.0-0 Nc6 9.Be3 cxd4 10.cxd4 Be7 11.Nc3 Qd6

This position has been reached 10 times in the 1900+ database. My friend (1800) played a novelty against me in this position (at least, different from anything in the database or that I'd ever seen before). I also have a 1900 rated friend who will probably play the SAME thing against me the next time we play (he saw my game against the 1800), so without further ado, here's what I'm having trouble against:

12.g4!? Bg6 13.Ne5!?

This is trouble, here's some sample lines:

a) 13... 0-0 14.Nb5!? (14.Bf4 is probably stronger, but this gives a sample of how annoying his knights can be) Qb8 (maybe this line shows that 14... Qd8 is forced) 15.g5! and white will fork on d7 15... Nxe5 16.gxf6 Bxf6 17.dxe5 Qxe5 and I can't claim to have enough compensation.

b) 13... Nd5?! is what I played, and it didn't do well, I was down a pawn for 40 moves, he played passively and got in time trouble and I was lucky to hold a draw.

c) 13... Nxe5?! 15.dxe5 Qxe5 (surely 15... Qxd1 16.Rfxd1 gives black a lifeless and worse game) 16.Qa4+ and not only will I be in trouble, but I hate defending crummy positions like this.

So I haven't given much analysis on anything, but that's because I don't see much hope. However, I've never seen this line in any book on theory- I've looked around and I found it in a 2150-1900 game where the 2150 won a piece for two pawns (in the 13... 0-0 14.Bf4 line) and played pretty miserably, giving back a pawn and then allowing an attack.

If anyone has any thoughts I'd love to hear them.
jstack ♡ 43 ( +1 | -1 )
Qd8 line first of all in variation (a) if white plays 14. Bf4 why can't white simply play Qxp?
I also don't see anything wrong with Qd8 as long as black avoids the trick on move 16.
1.e4 c5 2.c3 d5 3.exd5 Qxd5 4.d4 Nf6 5.Nf3 Bg4 6.Be2 e6 7.h3 Bh5 8.0-0 Nc6 9.Be3 cxd4 10.cxd4 Be7 11.Nc3 Qd6 12.g4 Bg6 13.Ne5 0-0 14.Nb5 Qd8 15.Bf4 a6 16.Nc7 Nd5
[ 16...Qxc7 17.Nxg6]
[ 17.Nxa8 Nxf4]
17...Qxd5 18.Nxg6 hxg6 with pressure on the d pawn

of course white does not have to play 15. Bf4 but I only chose it because it seemed to be the most ambitious move.
raskerino ♡ 27 ( +1 | -1 )
That looks reasonable.

Except 14... Qxd4?? is awful 15.Nxc6 wins at least a piece for the pawn: 15... bxc6?? 16.Qxd4, 15... Qxd1 16.Nxe7+ Kh8 17.Nxg6+ hxg6 18.Raxd1 or finally: 15... Qxf4 16.Nxe7+ followed by Nxg6+ with a piece for a pawn advantage.
jstack ♡ 4 ( +1 | -1 )
14...Qxd4?? Ooops not sure how I missed that one.
dropcut ♡ 74 ( +1 | -1 )
I agree that 13... Nxe5 doesn't seem good, seems too cramped after 16.Qa4+.
13... Nd5 isn't a good move either, mostly because I can't get the plan straight and realize what it wants to do there. 13... 0-0 is the strongest move I can find. White's best options:
a, 14.Nb5 Qd8 15.Bf4 Rc8 16.Rc1 a6 is what my Fritz recommends.
something I personally would throw out there as white:
b, 14.f4 whereas 14... a6 seems ok? Plans? Center rooks? h5 :)?
c, 14.Bf4 Nd5 [and now if 15.Nxg6 then 15... Nxf4 16.Nxf8 Rxf8 and black has a viscious attack, if not a winning position.] 15.Nxd5 Qxd5 and you can start focusing on that isolated pawn with a decent center. 15.Bg3 is also possible, but I'm not sure what to do here. Fritz suggests 15... Nxc3, but I don't know, he's a bit thick.

Hope that helped some.
raskerino ♡ 18 ( +1 | -1 )
thanks, after caldazar's (in a private message and dropcut's recommendation it seems like black is fine, I'd be interested to hear the silicon monster's evaluation (numerically) of the variations.