[September 21, 2017] Updated Opening Line by Aleksandar Kovačević:
Sicilian Defense, Najdorf Variation – English Attack with 6… e5 7. Nb3 Be6 8. f3

[Line 498 : 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Be3 e5 7. Nb3 Be6 8. f3 without 8… Be7]

Apart from the main line 8… Be7 covered in our Lines 499-500, Black has the following two options: 8… h5 and 8… Nbd7.

The idea of 8… h5 is to prevent White from launching a typical kingside pawn advance with g2-g4-g5. The game then usually continues with 9. Qd2 Nbd7 10. Nd5, where 10… Nxd5 11. exd5 Bf5 is an interesting sideline. Players of Black more frequently opt for 10… Bxd5 11. exd5 g6, followed by Bg7 and O-O, with reasonably decent prospects.

Against 8… Nbd7 White’s common response is 9. g4. Black now has two possibilities of about the same strength – 9… Nb6 and 9… b5, both giving him sufficient counterplay.

[Diagram: Black to Move] T. Luther – R. Wendt, Bad Wiessee 1998. Black is able to reach a winning position with the right move. What would you propose?

Click here to see the line in our viewer…

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