Personal Reflection on the Kan Part 1

IM yian123
Sep 9, 2016, 9:26 PM |

When I hit expert level, I started to have difficulty using the Accelerated Dragon with success on the black side. Since I had some trouble against the scheveningen with the white pieces, I decided to learn the kan as black, and tested it first out after I got the national master title. Some of my first thoughts on the kan.

1. Kan is more opening intensive than the Accelerated Dragon, but still relatively light in theory compared to the Najdorf. Nevertheless, the pawn structures and strategic ideas are similar in many of the lines.

2. Black players will need to have a cool head under pressure to diffuse white's attacks effectively and strike back when possible.

3. Much more complex positionally and tactically compared to the Accelerated Dragon. The kan can work against lower rated masters(2200-2300 USCF), but may not work against 2300+ USCF strength depending on how well the white player has studied the kan. This is when black knows the ins and outs of the Kan very well.

As the Kan is a much more complex beast than the Accelerated Dragon, my start in the Kan was fairly slow at first. Here are annotations of my first few games. Keep in mind, I can't do a thorough covering of all the kan lines, and a kan book would do a better job.

One of my earlier clashes against the highly talented player Samuel Sevian.

Next time, we will delve further into the kan through an analysis of some of my past games.