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olympio 25 ( +1 | -1 )
Sicilian - Najdorf after a6.. what is considered the best move? seems like so many different moves are played at this point.. which is the most aggressive for white? which is the most solid.. which is theoretically considered the best move?
anaxagoras 19 ( +1 | -1 )
most aggresive is 6. Bg5...

Keep in mind that 5...a6 is a shade better than no move at all! Which is why the reputation of the Nadjorf is owed more to those who play it than 5...a6's positional contributions.
invincible1 30 ( +1 | -1 )
I also play 6.Bg5. Depends upon your style of play. If you are a good positional player who can retain space advantage and press for advantage in a slow game, 6.Be2 is also a good alternative. However, 6.Bg5 leads to more aggressive play and has resulted in some of the best games ever.
olympio 22 ( +1 | -1 )
yes i'd wondered about that. a6 didn't look very strong.. but fischers and kasparovs can get away with that.. thought subtlties of the move might elude those of us who aren't as brilliant at chess as they are
tyekanyk 77 ( +1 | -1 )
The most solid reply ...is 6.Be2, and don't be afraid White still can attack you like crazy if you don't know what you're doing (as in all sicilians). Fischer used 6.h3 a couple of times, winning of course until that was used against him and he was forced to crush it. Nowadays the most popular reply is 6.f3 as to get an English Attack, without allowing Black to play 6...Ng4 (like after 6.Be3). Although has fared pretty well against this beating the likes of Anand, Shirov and Polgar. Leko is currently the highest rated practitioner of 6.Bg5, and that's due to his trainor, Amador Rodriguez. Nunn suggested 6.f4 in his book beating the Najdorf, while others have claimed that even 6.g3 is quite good.
Anyway White has a plethora of choises against the Najdorf, so Black must be thoroughly prepared.
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peppe_l 51 ( +1 | -1 )
Olympio Indeed. I dont play Sicilian myself but to give an example in previous Suomen Shakki (Finnish chess) magazine there was a Najdorf game analyzed in depth by IM Sammalvuo. The amount of subtle nuances after every single move was unbelievable! It certainly reminded me of a GM who said Najdorf is an opening for really strong players and unless one is a master or at least an expert it is better to play something else. But thanks Fischer and Kasparov everyone seems to play Najdorf nowadays :-)
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olympio 8 ( +1 | -1 )
I love Najdorf I've had many beautiful games as a result of playing it. Though I'm no grand master.
themagic_1 48 ( +1 | -1 )
najdorf is one line which waits for a mistake in white play, if white is too aggressive attacking it, black counter-attack is devastating. but one miss step by black will cause a total break down as well. I am a practicioner and always welcome a challenge on this line from black or white side. I enjoy the struggles of this line win or lose. I had many interesting game online and OTB around the narjdorf. and most of the tiem if my opponent start 1.e4 .....c5 is all you get..;)
indiana-jay 26 ( +1 | -1 )
My opinion on Najdorf I'm learning this defense. I think a6 is one of the strongest and most essencial move in Najdorf. Be3 or Qe2 is the most solid continuation. The most difficult aspect for me to play is to defense Kingside pawns attack or as far as White is concerned, to attack with Kingside pawns.
themagic_1 15 ( +1 | -1 )
what you referring to as white king pawn attack is the keres attack...which are employed mainly against the Scheveningen line of sicilian.
indiana-jay 121 ( +1 | -1 )
themagic_1 I don't know yet about the Keres Attack. If we had to be realistic and logical, and assumming that chess game is a draw if both sides make no mistake, you cannot force a win in the way a 2000 player beat 1200 player, or you cannot make a weak move hoping your opponent makes a blunder so that you can have an easy win. The win should be an accummulation of tiny advantages. This tiny advantages should at least be in the form of winning tempo.

I believe that a "blunderless" game to a certain degree will bring Najdorf to a game where Black has to defend his Kingside and White has to defend his Queenside (the open c-file is not there by magic). Placing the pieces in a productive way doing simultaneous job (defending and attacking) is why I said Be3 and Qe2 were solid continuations. I also believe that 0-0-0 will then be stronger than 0-0 for White. White Kingside pawns attack (and Black defense against this) is very dificult because for precise move it requires many calculation ahead similar to pawns endgame (You need to know which pawn should be moved first and when, and of course this is more complicated than the pawns endgame)
white_disc 20 ( +1 | -1 )
Transposing between various Sicilian Lines How do I transpose between the various Sicilian lines given a Najdorf set-up up to the a6 move by black ?

Thanks a lot.

Best regards,
indiana-jay 23 ( +1 | -1 )
white_disc I'm afraid you cannot. Najdorf is characterized with it's a6, and among Sicilian lines (B20-B99) it is the last variations available (B90-B99). I suggest that you understand (if you haven't) the concept of this ECO (code) system in order to learn openings easily.
atrifix 16 ( +1 | -1 )
The Najdorf often transposes to the Scheveningen after 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Be2 (or 6. Be3, 6. f4) e6, while avoiding the Keres attack (although White can play the Keres after 6. Be3 e6 7. g4).
indiana-jay 7 ( +1 | -1 )
atrifix What is the rationale behind such transpose from B92 into B84?
white_disc 16 ( +1 | -1 )
Indiana-jay Thanks for the piece of information on the ECO code :)

Will check it out :)

Best regards,
atrifix 7 ( +1 | -1 )
Avoid the Keres Attack After 6. Be2 e6 or 6. f4 e6, white cannot play 7. g4 without positional concessions.
riga 67 ( +1 | -1 )
Be3 and Qe2 IJ, i never saw this variation of the najdorf. I think your confusing it with other lines of the sicilain such as the dragon. I could be wrong, but i don't see the point. I play Bg5 against it. The main line goes 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 "a6" 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Be7 8.Qf3 Nbd7 9.0-0-0 Qc7 10.g4 b5 and here either Bd3,a3 or straightforward Bxf6. My most favorable and acurate game of najdorf on GK continued (v.s Tigran, i was white) 11. Bd3 b5 12. Ne2 Bb7 13.Bxf6 Nxf6 14.g5 Nd7 15.h4 Nc5 16. f5 e5 17. f6 exd4 18. fxe7 Ne6 19. Rh-f1 Qxe7 20. Bc4 O-O 21. Nxd4 Nxd4 22. Rxd4 Ra-e8 23. Qf4 Re-d8 24. h5 g6 25. hxg6 hxg6 26. Qh4 Qe5 27. Rh1 Qg7 28. Rd3 a5 29. Rd-h3 Rf-e8 30. Qh8+ 1-0

I think 24... g6 was a mistake but he started going downhill after 21. ... Nxd4 I think the thematic Nc5 would have been much better.After the text, my rook is a much better position than it looks.

anaxagoras 11 ( +1 | -1 )
That's obvious. Any attempt to gain advantage in one element of position gives way to your opponent in another.
indiana-jay 46 ( +1 | -1 )
riga I think you're right that I've mixed up Najdorf with other Sicilian lines. In fact I've never learnt openings in the way others might have. I started with the first moves ( here c4) and found out the ideas and logical continuation by myself. I know Najdorf only untill the sixth (?) move (a6), and I don't know about other lines. But surely I have played Sicilian lines without knowing if the moves are well documented.
olympio 11 ( +1 | -1 )
I believe Be2 is the strongest.. I've spent a week studying games on www.chessgames.com. Bg5 looks pretty.. but I don't think it is as winning for white as Be2
brucehum 48 ( +1 | -1 )
Ironies of live... ... and chess theory. Be2, the Opocensky, invites e5 by black, so for some time, around the Pachman books era, it was not too well considered. Now it is being played again.

Theory gives 6.Be2 as =, as all the main lines after 6... e5 give either an even position, or a complicated one where theoriticians haven't agreed yet.

In my database this are the stats for the main Najdorf lines:

6.Bg5+=/= 53%
6.Be2= 51%
6.Be3+=/= 55%
6.Bc4+=/= 52%
6.f4+=/= 55%

As it can be seen, all lines seem to give a slight advantage for white, except for Be2. Of course Be2 is a perfectly sound and good move!

brucehum 113 ( +1 | -1 )
Najdorf on the Najdorf Here are the words of the old argentinian master (known as "el viejo", or "the oldman"), about the Najdorf. Taken from foreword to the wonderful book "Understanding the chess openings: The Najdorf Variation", published by BHM in 1976, written by Geller, Gligoric, Kavalek and Spassky (heavyweights all of them).

"At that time (1937-38), the Richter attack and the same Scheveningen that we have nowadays were in fashion. And these variations obtained very good results. By observing an infinity of games I noticewd that White could attack naturally enough either on the king's wing with a pawn advance, or on the queen's side through Ng5 and subsequent sacrifices. 'This cannot be!' I said to myself. 'He cannot have everything.'"

"Praxis itself led me to verify the virtues and drawbnacks of 5... a6 followed by ... e5, which did indeed check the enemy pawn advance bt left the backward pawn on d6 weak. I reasoned it out that with Black one could not aspire to anything else and that this was a minor evil compensated for by the activity of the pieces, rather like negotiating a bargain: conceding something to gain something"
anaxagoras 4 ( +1 | -1 )
Najdorf on the Najdorf Now that is a little more enlightening...
mattafort 104 ( +1 | -1 )
B90-B99 Survey I have done a survey of Sicilian Najdorf today.
The games my own top50-gamebase. It is 5122 games played 2001-2002 by the Top50 Rated players in the world. As they were rated in beginning of 2003.

I found 133 games B90-B99. Average rating for white 2639, black 2657.
1-0 drw 0-1
36 63 34 = 133 games

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6
Most frequent move 6.Be3, 59 games, 44.6%.
Best scoring move 6.Bg5, 54.5%.
But the differences in scoring between 6.Be3; 6.f3; 6.Bg5; 6.Be2 are small.

Move ECO Frequen Score Draws
Be3 B90g 59: 44.6% 50.0% 53%
..f3 B90d 22: 16.6% 52.2% 32%
Bg5 B94a 22: 16.6% 54.5% 45%
Be2 B92a 21: 15.9% 47.6% 57%

The details and the games can be found here:

I have used Scid, as I did with Sicilian Dragon. scid.sourceforge.net