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For white is it ok to play a3 as a defense on the queen-side if you accept the gambit?
i play the benko and have never lost a game to a3 i asume you mean after 4.cxb5 a6 5.a3 but you could mean 4...a6 5.bxa6 Bxa6 6.a3 which i dont understand at all in any case i dont see why you would want to play a3 at all ever. so i guess you need to show the line you are looking at.
i have never see anyone took with the rook instead of the bishop on a6, and against the benko just study this line and you will win %80 of the times
There has been quite a bit of interest on the forums wrt the Benko recently and I've been looking at it.
It does seem that this a4 is statistically a good scorer and a couple of recent books don't cover it ! Yet chess.com and 365chess.com databases show good results.
There is one game with the Ng4 to e5 manoeuvre where black wins (it was marred by a blunder and a rapid game so not definitive), but suggests this may be a way forward for black ?
Thanks, will take a look.
a3 is not the standard theory move and neither is Rxa6
the correct way for black to play is g6 first and then only Bxa6
however for white there are various setups such as fianchettoing your bishop on g2 or playing e4 straight or even delaying e4 to play Nd2 and only then play e4!!
but in all these setups the move a3 is nowhere recommended by theory as it weakens b2 square which is the target point for black,
instead Rb1 and b3 is a more standard way of playing and is recommended highly!!!