Counterplay for white in the KIng's Indian Defense

May 1, 2008, 6:09 AM |

As a 1. d4 player, it's important to have some idea of what's going on in the King's Indian. This means knowing what the pawn structure will look like, where the pieces go, and a general plan for what we're playing for. In the variations with pawn chains, black plays for an attack on white's castled king, sometimes sacrificing material to finally break through. One of white's plans is to create space for his pieces on the queenside, either breaking through with tactics or creating a passed pawn there.


I have a couple of examples from my games. In the first example black gets a better game but my advanced pawns on the queenside allow me to try for counterplay in the form of sacrifing pieces to clear the way for a promotion.



In the second game I corrected some of my bad play from the first game and got into a very tense battle. Neither one of us were able to find a way to break into the opponent's position. Since trading pieces tends to emphasize the fact that black's dark squared bishop is behind the black pawns, I took the opportunity to trade pieces and head towards an endgame. I seized on an idea where my knight could be more influential than the bishop. I then managed to slip up in the exucution of the idea and let the victory slip away. My opponent accurately punished my mistake and proceded to execute me very precisely. Don't forget to be careful on every move!