The Alekhine (1.e4 Nf6) is a rare guest in general and especially at a high-level. During the pandemic, however, this daring opening has been employed on several occasions, notably by the World Champion Magnus Carlsen. A faster time-control and perhaps the unusual atmosphere created by online games probably helped some players unleash, from time to time, a marginal opening to surprise their opponents. 

Playing the Alekhine on a regular basis is quite demanding, not to say a bit foolish. Not that this provocative opening is bad, but some paths have been established where White can more easily claim a slight advantage out of the opening than against a more classical opening. This also means that the surprise-effect will be greater, particularly at speed-chess, an insufficiently-prepared opponent will find it hard to find the best replies. In this video course we will discuss some fashionable lines, still unexplored 3 or 4 years ago, like the astonishing piece-sacrifice in the well-known Voronezh Variation : 1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.c4 Nb6 5.exd6 cxd6 6.Nc3 g6 7.Be3 Bg7 8.Rc1 0-0 9.b3 d5 10.c5 e5!? In some correspondence games Alekhine devotees have used the now trendy fianchetto-approach vs 1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.Nf3, achieving fairly decent results. The impression that White can’t easily extract an opening edge was validated afterwards by over-the-board practice.

• Video running time: 5 hours 17 minutes

• With interactive training including video feedback

• Extra: Model games database & Training with ChessBase apps - Memorize the opening repertoire and play key positions against Fritz on various levels


This is what is delivered:

  • Fritztrainer App for Windows and Mac
  • Available as download or on DVD
  • Video course with a running time of approx. 4-8 hrs.
  • Repertoire database: save and integrate Fritztrainer games into your own repertoire (in WebApp Opening or in ChessBase)
  • Interactive exercises with video feedback: the authors present exercises and key positions, the user has to enter the solution. With video feedback (also on mistakes) and further explanations.
  • Sample games as a ChessBase database.
  • New: many Fritztrainer now also available as stream in the ChessBase video portal!

That's what the FritzTrainer App can do for you:

  • Videos can run in the Fritztrainer app or in the ChessBase program with board graphics, notation and a large function bar
  • Analysis engine can be switched on at any time
  • Video pause for manual navigation and analysis in game notation
  • Input of your own variations, engine analysis, with storage in the game
  • Learn variations: view specific lines in the ChessBase WebApp Opening with autoplay, memorize variations and practise transformation (initial position - final position).
  • Active opening training: selected opening positions are transferred to the ChessBase WebApp Fritz-online. In a match against Fritz you test your new knowledge and actively play the new opening.

Even more possibilities: Start FritzTrainer in the ChessBase program!

  • The database with all games and analyses can be opened directly.
  • Games can be easily added to the opening reference.
  • Direct evaluation with game reference, games can be replayed on the analysis board
  • Your own variations are saved and can be added to the own repertoire
  • Replay training
  • LiveBook active
  • All engines installed in ChessBase can be started for the analysis
  • Assisted Analysis
  • Print notation and diagrams (for worksheets)

Sample video


  • Introduction
  • Sidelines
  • 1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5
  • 2nd move alternatives
  • 3rd move alternatives
  • 3.Nc3 Nxc3 4.bxc3
  • 3.c4 Nb6 4.a4 and 4.c5 Nd5 5.Nc3
  • Four Pawns Attack
  • 1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.c4 Nb6 5.f4
  • 5...dxe5 6.fxe5 g6 and 6...c5 7.d5 g6
  • 5...g6
  • Exchange Variation
  • 1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.c4 Nb6 5.exd6
  • 5...exd6
  • 5...cxd6 6.d5 and 6.Nc3 g6 7.Bd3 Bg7 8.Nge2
  • 5...cxd6 6.Nf3 and 6.Nc3
  • Voronezh Variation
  • 1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.c4 Nb6 5.exd6 cxd6 6.Nc3 g6 7.Be3 Bg7
  • Deviations before 9...e5
  • 8.Rc1 0-0 9.b3: 9th move alternatives
  • 9...Bf5
  • Endgame after 9...e5 10.dxe5 dxe5 11.Qxd8 Rxd8
  • Modern Variation
  • 1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.Nf3 g6
  • 5.Ng5
  • 5.Bc4 Nb6 6.Bb3 Bg7: 7th move alternatives and earlier deviations
  • 5.Bc4 Nb6 6.Bb3 Bg7 7.Qe2
  • 5.Bc4 Nb6 6.Bb3 Bg7 7.0-0
  • 5.Bc4 Nb6 6.Bb3 Bg7 7.Ng5 e6 8.f4 dxe5 9.dxe5
  • 5.Bc4 Nb6 6.Bb3 Bg7 7.Ng5 e6 8.f4 dxe5 9.fxe5
  • 5. Bc4 Nb6 6.Bb3 Bg7 7.Ng5 e6 8.Qf3
  • Exercises 1-15
  • Description
  • Exercise 1
  • Exercise 2
  • Exercise 3
  • Exercise 4
  • Exercise 5
  • Exercise 6
  • Exercise 7
  • Exercise 8
  • Exercise 9
  • Exercise 10
  • Exercise 11
  • Exercise 12
  • Exercise 13
  • Exercise 14
  • Exercise 15
  • Exercises 16-25
  • Exercise 16
  • Exercise 17
  • Exercise 18
  • Exercise 19
  • Exercise 20
  • Exercise 21
  • Exercise 22
  • Exercise 23
  • Exercise 24
  • Exercise 25

Alekhine Defence

The Alekhine Defence is a provocative opening. Instead of doing the same as White and establishing a pawn in the centre, Black invites his opponent to chase his knight around the board and set up a broad pawn centre as he wins tempi. This is seen at its clearest in the principled Four Pawns Variation, in which 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.c4 Nb6 5.f4 dxe5 6.fxe5 is played. White can point to three central pawns, Black on the other hand has moved his king’s knight from g8 to the apparently unpromising b6.

This opening was not taken seriously until the future world champion Alexander Alekhine (1892–1946) began to play it from 1921 on. It was developed at a time when the old dogmas were being questioned and people were looking for something new. The basic idea, to provoke the creation of a pawn centre which will later be the target of attacks, was very influential and that influence can be seen on many other modern openings.

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