opinions on the Sveshnikov?

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #1


    I know it's a really uncompromising, and I like that. It must be sound because it is seen at top level nowadays.

    But surely its wretched pawn structure makes it really daunting to learn.


    I would like opinions on how hard it is to "master" it to play it at around 2000 level (rating I'm hoping to accomplish in 1-2 years). Would I drive myself crazy learning theory or would it be fairly intuitive to play once you get the hang of it?

    In other words, is it worth the effort to learn it or is it just too complicated to use it effectively at expert level?


    I like playing the Najdorf, and I have a love-hate relationship with it. The practical drawbacks I see in the Najdorf is that first you have to learn a ton of variations (Bg5, Bc4, Be3, Be2 are just the main systems, plus g3, h3, f4); plus white is given pretty much free rein (especially against e6-d6 setup) to throw everything at me. His moves come natural, while I have to defend accurately and if I do a single slip-up I instantly lose.


    Is the Sveshnikov plagued by these two things, or not?

    With my limited experience it seems to me that at least I get some initiative right away, and maybe there aren't that many variations to learn? (the main ones being only two, 9.Bxf6 and 9.Nd5 am I correct?)


    Any comment will be much appreciated.

    And if somebody wants to play some game with it (either online or live standard) I would be really happy to do it.

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #2


    Sveshnikov can be cruel. As black you must know a lot of critical lines. A friend (ELO 2000) played with white against another 2000 rated player in a team match. He took the pawn on b5 (a well known bishop sacrifice), but his opponent didn't knew any theory about it. Black was smashed down after 10 moves...

  • 4 years ago · Quote · #3


    Sveshnikov is comparatively easier and probably slightly more drawish than the Najdorf. There's some theory in some lines, but the ideas are easier than in the Najdorf.

    Certainly an ok choice as a 'bring me to 2000 elo' opening.

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