Classical King's Indian Defense with ...Na6

FM Steve Stoyko discussed some of his games with GMs in this line, mainly to illustrate White's strategic ideas -- though I think there are ideas here for Black as well. He suggested I also look at some of Reshevsky's games to get a better feel for White's ideas, so I include one below.

Steve Stoyko (2340) - Leonid Sokolin (2630) [E94]

NY Action/New York, NY (3) 1998


1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. Nf3 O-O 6. Be2 Na6 7. O-O e5 8. Re1 c6

So as to meet White's Pd5 push with ...c5 (or, more rarely, ...cxd5!?) without allowing dxc6 en passant. It also clears a path for the Queen and makes a potential secondary square for the Knight at c7 in case the c5 square does not work out. There are a few alternatives, the first of which is most commonly seen:

 

a) 8... Qe8 has been the most common alternative, when another of Steve's games against a GM went 9. Bf1 Bg4 10. d5 Qe7!? protecting d6 in preparation for ...c5

( White seems to have the edge after the most common alternatives: (a) 10... Nh5 11. h3 Gallagher) or (b) 10... Nb4 has been the approved move, threatening ... Bxf3 to wreck White's Kingside, but Joe Gallagher says White's best is 11. a3! Bxf3 12. gxf3 Na6 13. b4 as in Nielsen-De la Riva, Bled 2002)

11. h3 Bd7 12. Rb1 c5 13. a3

(13. dxc6!? bxc6 14. b4 Nc7 gives Black a compact and dynamic set-up, though White has some edge.)

13... Ne8 14. b4

Steve said that he was inspired by the way that Sammy Reshevsky used to play these positions-first building up control of the queenside before directing attention to the kingside.

14... f5 15. b5 Nb8!? (15... Nac7 16. b6!?) 16. exf5! gxf5 17. Ne2 Kh8 18. Nh2 Bc8 19. f4! Nd7

(19... e4 allows White to build up a kingside attack by Kh1 and g4 at his liesure.)

20. fxe5 dxe5 21. Nf4

White now targets the e5 pawn.

21... Ndf6 22. Bb2 Ne4 blocking the e-file 23. Nh5!

attacking the guard

23... N8d6 24. Nf3 Re8 25. Bd3

now pressuring e4

25... Kg8

Now White must play very precisely to realize his advantage since Black's pieces are poised to create counterplay on the kingside. Steve's move...

26. Nxg7?!

...appears to be inaccurate. Two alternatives suggest themselves:

(a) 26. Bxe4 might yield an edge, but Black has play: 26... fxe4 27. Nd2 Qg5 28. g4 (28. Nxe4 Nxe4 29. Rxe4 Bxh3?! 30. g4!) 28... e3 29. Nf3 Qh6 30. Nxg7 Qxg7 31. Qe2 h5!<=> 32. Nh2 hxg4 33. hxg4 b6 unclear )

 

(b) 26. Nd2! might be best, with the idea of continuing a slow build up on the kingside: 26... Nxd2 27. Qxd2 Bh8 28. Re3 h6 29. Rf1 with the initiative. )

26... Qxg7 27. Bxe4? fxe4 28. Nh2 Bxh3

Now we get to see how painful "the King's Indian counter-attack" can be for White:

29. Re2 Rf8 30. Qb3 Bd7 31. Re3 Rf5 32. Qc3 Rg5 33. Re2 Rf8 34. Rf1 Rxf1+ 35. Nxf1 Bg4 36. Rf2 Bf3! 37. Ne3 Rh5 38. Qa5 b6 (38... a6? 39. Qd8++-) 39. Qd2 Qh6 40. Rf1 Rh1+

0-1 Stoyko-Ibragimov (2672), World Open (he did not give me the year)

-- and "Ildar" went on to win the tourney thanks in part to this 3rd Round victory.

 

b) 8... exd4 9. Nxd4 Re8 10. Bf1 Nc5 11. f3 a5 12. Ndb5!

 

c) 8... Qe7?! 9. Bg5 c6 10. c5!

 

9. h3!?

Stopping ...Ng4 and ...Bg4 ideas.

 

9... Re8!?

Encouraging White to close the game or face strong counterplay against e4. He may also have the idea, as in the game, of playing for e-file pressure even after White closes things with d5 by forcing the exchange of his knight at f4 (after Nh5-f4).

a) 9... exd4 is probably best, as it often is in this line: 10. Nxd4 Re8 11. Bf3 Qb6! 12. Nb3!? unclear.

 

b) 9... Nh5?! 10. Be3 Nf4 11. Bf1 c5 12. dxe5 dxe5 13. Bxf4 exf4 14. e5 Aseev-Ubilaa, Daugavpils 1989

10. d5

10. Bf1?! exd4=

 

10... Nh5

10... c5 11. a3 Nh5 appears more consistent.

 

11. Bf1

11. Bg5!? Qd7 12. Qd2 appears to keep the Knight out of f4.

 

11... Nf4 12. Bxf4! exf4 13. dxc6 bxc6

13... Bxc3!? is always in the air, but after 14. bxc3 (14. cxb7 Bxb7 15. bxc3 Bxe4 ) 14... bxc6 15. Qd2 Qf6 16. Rad1 does not work out.

 

14. e5!

to stop Bxc3

 

14... dxe5 15. Qxd8 Rxd8 16. Nxe5

with the much better pawns

 

16... Bb7 17. Na4 c5

otherwise c5 and Bc4

 

18. Nd3! Bc6 19. Naxc5 Nxc5 20. Nxc5 Bxb2

Black has recovered the pawn, but now White's pawn is passed.

 

21. Rad1 f3 22. Rxd8+ Rxd8 23. Nb3?! Bc3

23... fxg2 24. Bxg2

 

24. Rc1 Bb4 25. gxf3 a5! 26. Rb1!?

26. a3!? Bxa3 27. Ra1 Bb4 28. Nxa5 Bxf3 29. Nb3

 

26... Bxf3?!

26... a4! 27. Nc1 (27. Nd4 Rxd4 28. Rxb4 Rd2 29. c5 Rxa2 30. Bb5 Bxb5 31. Rxb5 Kf8 ) 27... Ba3 28. Nd3 unclear.

 

27. Bg2 Be2 28. Bd5! Bd3?

This loses the exchange.

 

29. Rd1! Bxc4 30. Bxf7+! Kxf7 31. Rxd8 a4 32. Rd4! axb3 33. Rxc4

Simpler is 33. axb3 Bxb3 34. Rxb4

 

33... bxa2 34. Rc7+ Kf6 35. Ra7 h5 36. Rxa2 Bc3 37. Kg2 Kg5 38. Ra3 Bd2 39. Rd3 Bf4 40. Rd5+ Kf6 41. Kf3 Bc7 42. Rc5 Be5 43. Ke4 Bh2 44. f4 Bg3 45. Rc6+ Kg7 46. f5 gxf5+ 47. Kxf5 Bf2 48. Rg6+ Kh7 49. Kg5 h4 50. Rf6 Bg3 51. Rf7+ Kg8 52. Kg6 Bh2

1/2-1/2

 

Steve agreed to a draw, unable to find the winning idea in time pressure. Fritz suggests 53. Rd7 53. Rf2 Bg3 54. Re2 Kf8 55. Re4 is the same 53... Kf8 54. Rd4 Bg3 55. Re4! zugzwang 55... Bh2 56. Rxh4+-

1/2-1/2

 

[Michael Goeller]


Samuel Herman Reshevsky - Svetozar Gligoric [E96]

New York m/New York (1) 1952


Stoyko says that Reshevsky's games against the KID make a good study for anyone interested in mastering the positional concepts for White. Though Black does not play ...Na6 in the following game, the ideas it contains are still useful for these positions.

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. Nf3 O-O 6. Be2 e5

6... c6 7. O-O e5 8. Re1 Qb6?! 9. d5 (9. dxe5?! Ng4<=>) (or 9. c5? dxc5 10. dxe5 Ng4 11. Bf4 c4 ) 9... c5 (9... Ng4 10. Rf1 f5 11. Ng5!) 10. a3 Na6 11. Bd2 h6 (11... Qxb2?? 12. Na4+-) (11... Bd7 12. Qc1!?) 12. b4! Qd8 (12... cxb4? 13. axb4 Nxb4?? 14. Na4+-) 13. Rb1 Reshevsky,S-Mednis,E/New York 1962 (41)

 

7. O-O

7. d5 Nbd7 8. Bg5 Petrosian

 

7... Nbd7 8. Re1 c6 9. Bf1 Re8 10. d5 c5 11. a3 Rf8 12. g3 Ne8 13. b4 Qe7

13... h6! 14. Bg2 f5 or 13... f5!? 14. Ng5! Ndf6 15. Ne6

 

14. Ra2 Nc7 15. Be3 b6

15... f5? 16. bxc5 Nxc5 17. Bxc5 dxc5 18. d6+-

 

16. Nh4 Ne8

16... f5!? 17. exf5 gxf5 18. f4 e4

 

17. Qc1 Nc7 18. Bg5 Bf6 19. Bh6 Bg7 20. Bh3! Re8 21. Bxg7 Kxg7 22. Qd2 Nf8 23. Bxc8 Rexc8 24. bxc5 bxc5 25. Rb2 Nd7 26. Na4 Rcb8 27. Reb1 Qd8

27... Rxb2? 28. Rxb2 Rb8 29. Qa5! Ftacnik

 

28. Kg2! h6

28... Rxb2!? 29. Rxb2 Rb8 30. Nf3

 

29. Qa5 Nb6 30. Nxb6 axb6 31. Qc3 Kg8 32. Qd2

32. Rxb6? Rxb6 33. Rxb6 Nxd5!

 

32... Rxa3?

32... >= Kg7 33. Rxb6 Rxb6 34. Rxb6 Rxa3 35. Qb2 Ra8 36. Rb7 Ftacnik

 

33. Qxh6 Ne8 34. f4 exf4 35. Rf2 Qe7

35... >= Qf6 36. Rxf4 Qg7 37. Qg5 Ftacnik

 

36. Qxf4 Ra4 37. Rbf1 Rb7

37... Rxc4 38. Nxg6! fxg6 39. Qf8+ Qxf8 40. Rxf8+ Kh7 41. R1f7+ Kh6 42. Rh8+ Kg5 43. h4+ Kg4 44. Rf4# Ftacnik

 

38. Nxg6?!

This sacrifice seems overly complicated, especially since White has the simpler line 38. Qg4! Rxc4 39. Rxf7 Qxf7 40. Rxf7 Rxf7 41. Qxg6+ Likely both players were in time pressure. The line that Reshevsky chose probably also works for White, especially since Black is hard-pressed to find the best response.

 

38... fxg6 39. Qh6 Qxe4+?

39... Ng7 40. Qxg6 Rxc4 41. e5!

 

40. Kg1 Qd4 41. Kg2

>= 41. Qxg6+

 

41... Qe4+ 42. Kh3 Qf5+

1-0

 

[Ftacnik / Goeller]

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