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10 votes
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Why almost nobody plays ...6...b5 in the Lipnitsky Najdorf?

This is a good question, and I'd like to provide you an in-depth analysis but I don't have time right now, so here's a short answer, more to be added later: Short answer: An immediate b5, before ...
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9 votes
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What is the idea behind playing 6.a3 in the Sicilian Najdorf?

The move a3 serves basically two functions: White can develop the bishop to c4, and keep it aimed on d5, even if Black attacks it with b5, or, as Giri did, with Be6. In the lines where Black plays .....
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  • 23.9k
8 votes

Why does 6.Bc4 prevent 6...e5 in the Sicilian Najdorf?

e5 is bad against the Fischer-sozin variation, because of 7. Nf5, which puts pressure on the d6 weakness. Now granted, you could play Nf5 whenever black plays e5, whether you're playing Be2 (the ...
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7 votes
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Sicilian Najdorf 6. Bg5 line

This line is not very popular because black can challenge the bishop with 7…h6. Now white is forced to exchange his bishop against the knight, either by taking right away 8.Bxf6 or after 8.Be3 Ng4. ...
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7 votes
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What is the name of this Sicilian Variation?

It's an old main line of Sicilian Najdorf, and according to Wikipedia, it's the De Verbeterde List, or Improved Strategem, due to recent efforts by Dutch players to revive it.
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7 votes
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Feeling cramped in the Najdorf

Let's forget for a moment that it's a Najdorf. You were cramped because you never gave yourself space. Instead, you spent a lot of time wandering around with your knight and bishop and opening lines ...
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7 votes
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Help with the Sicilian Defence - I need to understand those early pawn moves

Yes, in the Sicilian black often falls behind in development, and that is a problem -- white often gets the chance to mount an attack. But black has some compensation. After ...cxd4 Nxd4 he has two ...
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6 votes

Feeling cramped in the Najdorf

One of the main themes in the Najdorf is: White attacks on the King side and Black attacks on the Queen side. You never started you attack on the Queens side. Here is an example of Kasparov game ...
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  • 6,478
6 votes

What is the idea behind playing 6.a3 in the Sicilian Najdorf?

Pawn b7 generally wants to threaten knight on c3 at some point so definitely there is one piece that is interested in b4 square. But a3 is not developing move in open position so the deepest idea of ...
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  • 3,256
5 votes

Why is taking the e4 Pawn considered risky here?

Sorry for the lack of a board here, I will learn how to paste boards here soon. 8.f4 b4 9.Na4 (Nce2 is reasonable too) Nxe4, one might ask, what has white got? O-O and black has serious issues ...
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5 votes
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Najdorf poisoned pawn with or without 7..h6 8 Bh4

One reason is that it avoids a certain line that you would get after playing 7...Qb6, which is 8.Nb3 If Black plays 7...h6 first, 8.Bh4 Qb6 9.Nb3 is no longer possible because Black can play 9...Qe3+ ...
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5 votes
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Idea behind e-pawn sacrifice in Open Sicilian: Najdorf, Freak Attack (6. Rg1)?

I think that a lot of the answers to your various questions about "why this or that" come down to the fact that it is just very unexplored theory, and the black players are just using their best ...
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  • 31.9k
4 votes

Feeling cramped in the Najdorf

My first thought is that "10...Ne8: I was trying to launch a Kingside attack myself, and get my knight to a better square eventually," is the key mistake. White has just castled Queenside and is very ...
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4 votes

Feeling cramped in the Najdorf

My observations. 12. ...Bxh4. The flood gate of h file is opened in opposite side castling. Knight on b8 is not activated. Unclear plan of ...Ne8 ...e5 looks weak as Bishop on c4 becomes very active. ....
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4 votes

Is the 6.h4 Najdorf that bad?

I play the Najdorf with Black and would say that on move six White has tried almost everything: almost every legal move is a move and so are attempts like 6.h4, 6.a4 or the like. That said, there are ...
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  • 522
3 votes

Current state of Polugayevsky/Najdorf

With this particular continuation xf6 ...Qe5+ Be2 ...Qxg5 0-0 should provide white with good play, I've compared some databases which generally favor white in this position. Instead of B5 many ...
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  • 427
3 votes

Najdorf threefold repition

does it mean that Be3 is the best 6th move in the Najdorf for white and does it mean that normal play with 6... e5 is very dangerous for black? "No" is the answer to the first question and "Not ...
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  • 75.7k
3 votes

Tips for the Najdorf Sicilian?

Two or three games is very little to say much. You will not even have encountered all of the main lines after ....a6. Generally the Najdorf Sicilian is rather tactical and opening mistakes can quickly ...
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  • 20.4k
3 votes
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What is wrong with taking the e4 pawn in the Najdorf Sicilian after 6.Bc4?

This is not a gaping hole in opening theory. Looking through my reference database, White has an excellent score after 10.Re1. Black needs to reply with 10...d5 not to be clearly worse, because of the ...
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  • 7,332
3 votes

Najdorf poisoned pawn with or without 7..h6 8 Bh4

According to the Game Database of ChessTempo, 7....Qb6 is actually more popular than 7....h6. At the very top level, both moves have their supporters, e.g. Anand and Grischuk for 7....Qb6 and Vachier-...
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  • 5,438
3 votes

Why not Ng4 in Sicilian after Nf3?

6...Ng4 doesn't look good at all. Tactical flaw: Black is behind in development, so White should aim for direct play with 7.Bg5 and then: 7...f6 8.Bc1 [8.Bh4] Be6 9.h3 Nh6 10.Bxh6 gh6 11.Nh4 [11....
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  • 12.9k
3 votes
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Knowing when to play Nc6 vs Nbd7 in the Najdorf Sicilian as black?

Well it all "depends" on the position, but in the given example, Nc6 is a better option as it has a possible outpost on d4 or b4 and with the rook on c8 it will also be doubly defended. It ...
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3 votes

Help with the Sicilian Defence - I need to understand those early pawn moves

First, in chess, being behind in development is not always the end of the world. It certainly can be if your king gets stuck in the center of the board, and comes under attack; but there are many ...
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  • 31.9k
2 votes

Feeling cramped in the Najdorf

I am by no means an expert on the Najdorf (my experience is entirely on the white side, and some time ago), but it looks like you lacked the urgency and dynamism that such a double-edged line requires,...
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  • 251
2 votes

Exchange sacrifice to dominate black squares in Najdorf

I found it! It was Lazaro Bruzon vs Vassily Ivanchuk, 11/2005. Here's the link to the game (totally recommended!): http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=1366555 Thank you for the help!
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2 votes

Is the Poisoned Pawn variation of the Najdorf (7... Qb6) considered some sort of refutation of 6.Bg5?

The problem with Bg5 is mainly that black will usually be better prepared than white in the messy poisoned pawn. He either doesn't play it or he knows it. On the other hand imagine Be3. There black is ...
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  • 3,256
2 votes

Why does 6.Bc4 prevent 6...e5 in the Sicilian Najdorf?

Black can play 6...e5, it's just not very good. After 7.Nf5 White has a comfortable position with an edge in development and mobility. For example, how is Black going to develop the f8-Bishop? 7......
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  • 739
1 vote

Najdorf threefold repition

He doesn't have to return, but it is probably the most flexible move. You can't hold knight's position on g4, you don't like going on e5 and the knight will be attacked by the most natural move in the ...
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  • 3,256
1 vote

Why is taking the e4 Pawn considered risky here?

Instead of 9. Na4, there is the possibility of the counterattack 9. e5.
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