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The Najdorf Explained (6.Bc4 introduction and sidelines)

Feb 17, 2010, 5:23 PM 2

Hello. In my last blog I explained some key concepts for black in the Sicilian Najdorf. I also promised to discuss some options for white after black plays 5.a6.

Today, we are going to look at 6.Bc4, also known as the Sozin Attack. This attack was often played by Fischer when he encountered the Najdorf. That's why this attack is sometimes called the Fischer Attack. This line is a perfect choice for tactical players who like to conduct sacrifices, for this attack is best known for sacrifices such as Nc3-d5, Nd4-f5, and captures on the e6 square.

After white plays 6.Bc4, black is virtually forced to reply 6.e6, reducing the scope of the bishop. You could ask, "After black plays 6.e6, isn't the 'sozin' bishop simply 'biting on granite'?" To answer 'yes' to this question fails to see the whole point of 6.Bc4. When the bishop moves to the safe b3 square, the bishop plays a prophylactic role in preventing black from expanding in the center. In other words, playing e6-e5 or d6-d5 will bring the bishop on b3 back to life. But there is a drawback. The development of the bishop to c4 can be time-consuming, and the bishop walks straight into a queenside storm by black. This is the Sozin Attack.

After 6.e6, white has three continuations, with the lowest being the most popular.
A) 7.a3
B) 7.a4
C) 7.Bb3
We will look at 7.a3 and 7.a4 now, and save 7.Bb3 for later because there are many other continuations after 7.Bb3!
A) 7.a3
B) 7.a4
Next time, we will discuss White's other and most popular option of 7.Bb3. That is all for today. Class is dismissed.

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