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This month we return to the 'real' King’s Indian with the usual bloodbaths - no draws!

Download PGN of April ’17 KID games

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Pseudo Samisch - 3.f3 c5 4.d5 [E60]

In Laylo, D - Zhou Jianchao, we look at 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.f3 c5 4.d5 d6 5.e4 Bg7 6.Ne2 with White bringing his king’s knight to the c3-square. I had thought that 6...0-0 may be too slow:

However, after 7.Nec3 e6 8.Be2 exd5 9.cxd5 a6 10.a4 Nh5 11.Be3 f5 12.Qd2 f4 Black got a good position and went on to win, but I think that White can subtly improve his play.

Fianchetto Variation Simagin/Yugoslav Variation 7...Bg4 8.d5 [E62]

A few months ago we checked out 6...Nc6 7.0-0 Bg4!? 8.d5 Na5 9.Nd2 c5 10.Qc2 a6 11.h3 Bd7 12.b3 b5 13.Bb2 Rb8:

One thing to consider is that these Yugoslav position were considered to favour White for a long time, but nowadays White usually avoids them. In the Panno 7...a6 the move 8.d5 used to be one of the main lines, but it's not seen much nowadays. In Gazik, V - Socko, B, the Polish Grandmaster showed that he knew exactly how to play the resulting structures right into the endgame.

Classical Fianchetto - 7...Nbd7 8.e4 c6 9.Re1/ 9.h3 Qb6 [E69]

6...e5 7.d4 Nbd7 8.e4 c6 9.Re1:

is not nearly as popular as 9.h3, even 9.b3 is more popular (and probably better). After 9...exd4 10.Nxd4 Ng4! 11.h3 Black played 11...Qb6 in Roy, P - Gledura, B. This fails to take advantage of White's move order and we go into a different theoretical position. I consider this line, as well as Black’s more ambitious attempts to punish White’s risky ninth move.

Seirawan Variation 5.Bd3 0-0 6.Nge2 Nc6 [E70]

After 5.Bd3 0-0 6.Nge2 Nc6 7.0-0 e5 8.d5 Nd4 White usually takes on d4, but 9.f3!? is an interesting move:

White is not put off by the d4-knight. In Tran Tuan Minh - Saric, I White is able to show that this slow idea is not so harmless, as he outplays his esteemed opponent.

Averbakh Variation 6...Na6 7.f4 c6 8.Qd2 Nc7 9.Bf3 [E73]

Ivanchuk’s invention 5.Be2 0-0 6.Bg5 Na6 7.f4 c6 8.Qd2 Nc7 9.Bf3 is usually met with the confrontational 9...d5, which we have looked at a few times. Instead 9...Ne6 10.Bh4 c5 11.dxc5 Nxc5 12.Rd1 is considered to favour White:

In Hoang Thanh Trang - Kovalev, V Black plays the sharp 12...e5!? While this has its appeal, I suspect that the standard 12...Be6 13.b3 a5 is quite playable for Black.

Classical - Makagonov/Petrosian 6.h3 e5 7.d5 a5 8.Bg5 [E92]

In the popular line 6.h3 e5 7.d5 a5 the traditional 8.Bg5 has taken a backseat to the alternatives in recent years. After 8...Na6 9.Be2 Qe8 10.Nd2 Nd7 11.a3 Nb6 12.b3 Bd7 13.0-0! is a critical position, highlighted on this site several years ago:

Black has trouble equalizing here, and in Piorun, K - Georgiadis, N White wins just as I described back in 2010! Nevertheless, I do not think the second player has to backtrack just yet.

Classical - 7.0-0 Na6 8.Be3 c6 [E94]

5.Nf3 0-0 6.Be2 Na6 7.0-0 e5 8.Be3 c6 9.d5 Ng4 10.Bg5 f6 11.Bh4 c5 leads to a long strategic battle:

It would seem that with Black's knight on a6, White should be able to keep some theoretical edge, but the positions are complicated enough that there is ample scope for Black to try to outplay his opponent. In Sjugirov, S - Gordievsky, D Black is outrated but he manages to do just that.

Classical - 7.0-0 Na6 8.Be3 Ng4 [E94]

We have not looked at 5.Nf3 0-0 6.Be3 Na6 7.Be2 e5 8.0-0 Ng4 9.Bg5 Qe8 10.Re1 exd4 11.Nd5 since it was popular back in 2013. After 11...f6 12.Bf4:

12...c6 is supposed to be bad, but in Debashis, D - Vocaturo, D Black wins quickly. I think the move is better than its reputation, but White should still be better in an unbalanced position. Instead 12...d3 is the usual choice, but White has made some progress there, so we examine both continuations in some detail.

Until next month, David

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Don't hesitate to share your thoughts and suggestions with me. Any queries or comments to the KID Forum, or to me directly at (subscribers only) would be most welcome.