Line 449 deals with White’s various choices on move five (excluding 5. Nc3, which leads to our Line 450). The Szen Variation (5. Nb5) is covered as the main line, and usually one of the following two types of the positions occurs:
- After 5. Nb5 d6 6. c4 a Hegdehog type of structure appears. It occurred several times in seminal Karpov – Kasparov matches in Moscow in 1984 and 1985; one of them was won by Karpov, and another one by Kasparov, in an immortal game.
- The other important line 5. Nb5 d6 6. Bf4 e5 7. Be3 is suitable for players who want to avoid long theoretical discussions, and leads to positions resembling the Lasker Variation of the Sicilian Defense.
[Diagram: Black to Move] White is a pawn up, and Black needs to act fast to make use of the fact that White is underdeveloped. How should Black continue?
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