Introduction to Najdorf Sicilian

Introduction to Najdorf Sicilian

GM JRgascon
Jan 28, 2015, 7:26 PM |

Introduction to Najdorf Sicilian (IM Jose Gascón)

          The Najdorf Sicilian its probably the most popular defense of entire history of chess against 1.e4... The Najdorf starts after

           The popularity of this defense is because it offers excellent chances of win with black, with a lot of counter-attacking chances and rich strategical content. It has been played by GMs like Fischer, Kasparov, etc.  From the current elite almost every player has used it ocasionally, Topalov one of the biggest exponents. This can't be a coincidence and its a clear sign that the Najdorf is one of the better choices to play for a win against 1.e4.

Robert James Fischer (best player ever for me)  played Najdorf during his whole life
           Now the most important thing to start understanding this defense is to know what is the main ideas of 5...a6! are. I will start introducing the concept of flexibility in chess... Flexibility in chess means making the moves you  have to make anyway in most of situations and keep your other options open... To give you a couple of examples i will talk about 2 defenses that are sisters of the Najdorf and i will explain you why these defenses are not as flexible as the Najdorf.
               Now i hope you have an idea of what flexibility is.
            I will now share the ideas of the Najdorf!
1. Be flexible The move 5...a6 allows you to determine where the b8 knight and the e7 pawn will go in a more appropiate moment.
2. Control of the b5 square This square is quite important in the sicilian... In a lot of positions white wants to put a knight or a bishop on that square.
3. Prepare the b7-b5 advance This is a typical move in the Sicilian and has the idea of "bothering" the c3 knight and indirectly the e4 pawn that is defended by the aforementioned knight.
            Now hope all Najdorf's ideas are clear for you... You can't ask more for a 5th move!I think its a suitable option for everyone... Specially for attacking fans!
              If  you want to learn the Najdorf Sicilian i suggest you 2 options... Learn it with a coach or Learn it by yourself by watching games... I don't suggest books because there is so few good books about openings most of authors are not honest they just want to sell books...
               With this a finalize this little introduction to such a nice defence which i have been playing since the begining of my career and has given me and keeps giving me a lot of joy and happiness ... I have also lost a few games in this variation but that has made me learn so currently i consider myself a specialist in all variations of the Najdorf! If you have any doubts or want to learn more about the Najdorf dont think about it,  send me a mail to and here you have my profile so you can add me as a friend ... Hope you liked it! And until the next time
IM Jose Gascón
Chess profesional
Fide Rating: 2398