The Queen's Gambit Accepted (QGA) is Black's simplest way of dealing with one of White's most fashionable openings, the Queen's Gambit. Black grabs the gambit pawn and thus refuses to succumb to the passive positions so typical of the Queen's Gambit Declined. This direct and uncompromising way of playing gives rise to dynamic positions where both sides have excellent chances to play for the win. It's no surprise that the QGA has attracted many high-class advocates, including Garry Kasparov and Vishy Anand.
The Queen's Gambit Declined is an opening of great historical importance and Black's fundamental answer to 1 d4. From the very first move Black obtains a firm foothold in the centre, something that White finds extremely hard to undermine. Indeed, Black often bases his entire strategy around this control. The soundness of the Queen's Gambit Declined has never been in question, and its supporters at the highest level include a long list of Grandmasters headed by Kasparov, Kramnik, Karpov and Short, as well as many World Champions from the past.
The very closely linked Slav and Semi-Slav Defences are two of the most popular and combative openings that Black can play against the Queen's Gambit. They have provided the battleground for thousands of exciting encounters between the world's chess elite, including Garry Kasparov, Vishy Anand, Vladimir Kramnik, Alexei Shirov and Alexander Morozevich. Players of all levels are attracted to the Slav and the Semi-Slav because they are solid, dependable defences that do, however, promise abundant possibilities for dynamic counterplay.