Jun 22, 2010

King's Indian 101: Introduction Part IV--Sämisch Variation

Click here for Part I: Overview
Click here for Part II: Classical
Click here for Part III: Four Pawns Attack
Click here for Part V: Averbakh System

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f3  introduces the Sämisch Variation.  White fortifies e4 and employs a flexible system, including that the King can be tucked away to either side of the board.  Should Black play an early c5, the opening will often look more like a Benoni than a KI.  The main choice by Black now is 5...O-O; Black may also play 5...c6, 5...Nbd7, 5...e5, 5...Nc6, and 5...a6.  In response to 5...O-O, White has a major move, 6.Be3, and two minor choices, 6.Bg5 and 6.Nge2 (see G111).  After 6.Be3, Black has no less than seven moves that have been played more than 1,000 times in Mega 2010.  Kasparov has played five of them.  For purposes of this introduction, let's reduce the numbers by looking at 2600+ players, with the winning percentage, as always, from White's persepective:

6...e5  22 Games  47.7%
6...c5 20 Games  45%
6...Nc6 7 Games  57.1%
6...Nd7 5 Games  70%
6...c6  3 Games  83.3%
6...a6  3 Games  83.3%
6...b6  1 Game  50%

So, it's 61 games, with more than two-thirds of those games involving one of two moves: 6...e5 or 6...c5, with those two moves showing a plus on the Black side.  Unless there be any mistake, the players of the White pieces in all of the above games were also above 2600.  The thrust of this intro is to identify some of the major lines of play, and, as always, the details of the opening will be drawn out through games. 

A.  6...e5 and now White has 7. d5 and 7.Nge2, with mainline play as follows:

 1.  7.d5 c6 8.Qd2 cxd5 9.cxd5 Nbd7     
 2.  7.Nge2 c6 8. Qd2 Nbd7 9.O-O-O a6 (see G113)

B.  6...c5 and now White has 7.Nge2, 7.dxc5, 7.d5

1.  7.Nge2 (keeps the tension) Nc6 8.d5 (8.Qd2) Ne5 9.Ng3 e6

2.  7.dxc5 dxc5 8.Qxd8 Rxd8 9.Bxc5 Nc6 and Black's compensation is indicated by that in over 700 games, White has a mere 47% win rate despite the extra pawn.  (See G114)

3.  7.d5 e6 8.Qd2 exd5 9.cxd5 a6

C.  6...Nc6 (Panno Variation) 7.Nge2 (7.d5?! Ne5!) a6 8.Qd2 Rb8