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Normal Topic How to Study Najdorf? (Read 3593 times)
chk
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Re: How to Study Najdorf?
Reply #4 - 12/21/09 at 10:26:52
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MNb wrote on 12/18/09 at 21:06:15:

GM Nunn wrote about 6.Bg5: The flimsy justification of including complete games in an opening book that it is helpful to see typical plans in the resulting midddlegame positions doesn't apply to the 6.Bg5 Najdorf: the typical plan is to randomly hack towards the opposing king.
If he is right then there is no alternative for memorizing. I am afraid it is even more true for the Perenyi Attack 6.Be3 e6 7.g4, in case Emms has included that variation in his book.


I only partly agree with you, it mostly depends on what system Black decides to play. If he/she chooses Nc6 and R-Rauzer or the classical defence (7. ... Be7), then OK some memorisation is needed, however when you reach the middlegame you usually see some typical positional elements (e.g. correct timing of ...e6-e5, or O-O-O by Black which requires some manoeuvring by both sides, etc.).
  

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Re: How to Study Najdorf?
Reply #3 - 12/18/09 at 21:06:15
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Reverse wrote on 12/18/09 at 03:40:39:
I just bought John Emms's Play the Najdorf:Schevennigen style.  I am curious as to a good way to learn this opening. I want to seriously learn the ins and outs of these variations.


GM Nunn wrote about 6.Bg5: The flimsy justification of including complete games in an opening book that it is helpful to see typical plans in the resulting midddlegame positions doesn't apply to the 6.Bg5 Najdorf: the typical plan is to randomly hack towards the opposing king.
If he is right then there is no alternative for memorizing. I am afraid it is even more true for the Perenyi Attack 6.Be3 e6 7.g4, in case Emms has included that variation in his book.
  

The book had the effect good books usually have: it made the stupids more stupid, the intelligent more intelligent and the other thousands of readers remained unchanged.
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chk
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Re: How to Study Najdorf?
Reply #2 - 12/18/09 at 09:46:40
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I would add that it is important to play through complete games in order to also see typical endgame or late middlegame strategies. Usually in the Najdorf, Black's position in the endgame has some typical trumps like the Bishop pair and the K-side pawn majority. Many of your wins will come in the endgame and not knowing how to use these trumps will be a problem..

And some (more) ways to help you remembering variations:
- In the beginning forget a bit about concrete variations and try to get a feeling of the opening by reading about it and also playing friendly games (or vs. a computer).
- Every now and then play some blitz games and then check to see where you deviated from the book and why. Experience (especially if painful) helps to get the moves stuck in your head.
- In very tactical variations like 6. Bg5 (as Alias pointed above), where you have no big room for deviations and some common sense moves may be losing on the spot, it is a good idea to understand the concept behind each & every move (I find this is the easiest way for me to memorise difficult lines). It is like remembering a story, e.g.: My Queen goes to c7 and thus stops Bc4 or it covers b7 and I can now safely play Bd7 without fearing e5, etc.

And some practical tips that may be your deal or not (read these with an open mind):
- Be practical, choose similar variations or ways of playing whenever possible, so to cut down on therory. You can expand your knowledge later on.
- Avoid the poisoned pawn variation for the moment, it comes from another planet.
- Save some of your opening study time to reinforce your anti-sicilian systems (you will face anti-s a lot and they are equally dangerous).
- ..and take baby steps - one chapter at a time!

my 2c  Cool

Edit: I should add there are other ways to memorise opening lines by using specialised software, e.g. Chess Opening Wizard. If you are interested I can point you on some threads here. But I believe first you have to go the traditional way, i.e. read the book, practice and take notes..
  

"I play honestly and I play to win. If I lose, I take my medicine." - Bobby
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Re: How to Study Najdorf?
Reply #1 - 12/18/09 at 08:00:49
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It's a problem for us all.

In any opening, one has to learn the positional themes. What are you trying to achieve? Which pieces should you try to keep and which to exchange? Which pawn breaks should you look for for you and your opponent?

Then you have to learn tactical themes. In many cases, slight differences in the position may or may not make typical tactics work. Try to find and understand those themes.

Then you have specific tactics for certain lines. Tactics that makes the entire line work for you or perhaps even refute the opponents play. These lines has to be learned by heart.

Some Najdorf lines are clearly positional but many, especially the Bg5 lines are very tactical. 

The book you have is good, but slightly old. You may want to look at more recent games. Try to go through the games and understand the moves for each side. There is not a book which covers every possible response. If a move which you find reasonable is not in the book, try to understand why. First by yourself thoroughly, then perhaps with a friend or a computer program. Computer programs are excellent for helping out if the tactics work or not.

When you work a lot with an opening, you will find that there are improvements to be found vs any book. 

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The Najdorf is an excellent variation, perhaps the best vs 1.e4. Remember that it requires a lot of work!
  

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How to Study Najdorf?
12/18/09 at 03:40:39
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I just bought John Emms's Play the Najdorf:Schevennigen style.  I am curious as to a good way to learn this opening. I want to seriously learn the ins and outs of these variations. I have had problems in the passed with learning openings.  I usually just read through the book but I have found that this doesn't help much with recalling lines during tournament play. How should I tackle this problem?
  
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