Please turn on javascript in your browser to play chess.
Only Chess Forum

Only Chess Forum

  1. Standard member rking00
    Suicide Bishop
    10 Aug '09 04:46
    Is one stronger than the other, or is it just a matter of personal style. I like the Najdorf a lot. I guess it's because my bishops are maybe a little more unpredictable than in the Dragon. I tend to like that dark-squared bishop as an attacking piece. On the other hand, I am a patzer, and I have noticed that a lot of strong players swear by the Dragon. Is there a reason for this?
  2. Standard member orion25
    Art is hard
    10 Aug '09 08:39
    just go for the french
  3. Standard member ptobler
    Patzer
    10 Aug '09 09:35 / 1 edit
    Najdorf should be better. Of course, you could always go for Simon Williams' Dragadorf hybrid of the Najdorf and Dragon variations! (Can find this in his recent book and in an article he did in New In Chess Yearbook 76 a few years back.)
  4. 10 Aug '09 11:11
    At the GM level, the Najdorf is much more popular and reliable. The Dragon is pretty easy to play against non-standard lines, though. I think this accounts for the popularity of the Dragon with some players. If you know it pretty well, you can score lots of points as black. In the Najdorf, if white just plays sensible development, its not quite as easy for black to get the advantage. Just my opinion.
  5. 10 Aug '09 14:47
    At the amateur level, the dragon is popular because it's called "the dragon." At the super GM level, the Najdorf is popular because it scores better.

    Unless you plan on taking on super GM's any time soon, the difference in reliability is trivial. One consideration is probably that OTB, the plans both for and against the dragon are much simpler.
  6. Standard member wormwood
    If Theres Hell Below
    10 Aug '09 14:58
    Originally posted by rking00
    Is one stronger than the other, or is it just a matter of personal style. I like the Najdorf a lot. I guess it's because my bishops are maybe a little more unpredictable than in the Dragon. I tend to like that dark-squared bishop as an attacking piece. On the other hand, I am a patzer, and I have noticed that a lot of strong players swear by the Dragon. Is there a reason for this?
    not really. either one will do fine. most people who prefer dragon probably like it because of its aggressiveness, and dynamism, which gives black chances. but najdorf is no ruy lopez either.

    pick the one you feel more at home in.
  7. 10 Aug '09 21:04
    You have to be a very good chess player to play the Najdorf.
    and be prepared to make some pretty crazy looking moves and be on
    the ball tactically. I mean really on the ball.

    The score of quick wins v the Najdorf at the top level is incredible
    one minor slip and there is no recovery - you lag so far behind in development
    you get a tanking.

    Most openings you can play yourself back into the game if you
    make a wee error - with the Najdorf all you can hope for is that he
    screws up the attack and facing a fully developed army that rarely happens.

    The Dragon is easier to play (for both sides) - you have ready made
    plans and know where your piece are going.
  8. 10 Aug '09 21:17
    Originally posted by orion25
    just go for the french
    LOL!!!!!!! Sound advice
  9. Standard member rking00
    Suicide Bishop
    11 Aug '09 00:46
    Okay, this was my first serious attempt with the Najdorf. My opponent was rated about 400 pts. higher at the time, so I guess I was just happy to get through the opening in one piece. What GP says certainly applies to this game- I was lagging in development and had to play pretty creatively to avoid a quick loss. Unfortunately I proceeded to throw away any advantage I may have had by first making some risky pawn pushes in front of my king (I was desperate to avoid a back-rank mate) and of course dropping a knight didn't help either.


  10. Standard member rking00
    Suicide Bishop
    11 Aug '09 00:49
    I should also say that if I found the French enjoyable to play from either side, I would not have bothered starting this thread.
  11. 11 Aug '09 05:37
    Originally posted by rking00
    Okay, this was my first serious attempt with the Najdorf. My opponent was rated about 400 pts. higher at the time, so I guess I was just happy to get through the opening in one piece. What GP says certainly applies to this game- I was lagging in development and had to play pretty creatively to avoid a quick loss. Unfortunately I proceeded to throw away any a ...[text shortened]... f6g7 55. Qe2f2 Bd5e4 56. h3 h5
    57. Kh1h2 Qg7g5 58. Qf2f7 1-0 [/pgn]
    well just the beginning starting at move ten looks senseless. not bad but the queen's knight wanted to be on c5 and you played 10...Qd7 cramping it up. perhaps 10...b6 (to prevent a5) 11.Be3 then ...Nd7-c5. i'm no expert but i that knight ends up there often in the najdorf. it is well placed there and if white trades it off then black loses his backwards d pawn and gains the open d file. somebody correct me if i'm wrong there. also you missed an opportunity to win a pawn on move 13.
  12. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Gonzalo de Córdoba
    11 Aug '09 09:05 / 1 edit
    I don't like e5. It leaves such a gaping weakness at d5. I play d6 instead.

    For move 11, develop the last Knight! Instead of finishing development (11...Nc6 12. Na4 Rad6) you ended up UNdeveloping the Bishop.

    I don't like 15...Rb4. You pull it off the open file for no real purpose that I csn tell. Eventually that Rook came under attack and then d6 which is where the Rook should be covering. Then of course you drop the Knight.
  13. 11 Aug '09 13:43
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    I don't like e5. It leaves such a gaping weakness at d5. I play d6 instead.

    For move 11, develop the last Knight! Instead of finishing development (11...Nc6 12. Na4 Rad6) you ended up UNdeveloping the Bishop.

    I don't like 15...Rb4. You pull it off the open file for no real purpose that I csn tell. Eventually that Rook came under attack and then d6 which is where the Rook should be covering. Then of course you drop the Knight.
    6. ... e5 is the main idea of the Najdorf and is the main line. Now we see the point of a6 (the Knight no longer has the b5 square available in addition to preparing the b7-b5 advance). There is only a hole on d5 if White can take advantage of it and this is not the case if Black plays properly at least in my experience. I take it you meant 6. ... e6 which leads to a Scheveningen which is also good, but I like e5 myself.

    After 10. Bf3 Qc7 is more in the spirit of the Najdorf I would think followed by Nbd7.
  14. Donation !~TONY~!
    1...c5!
    11 Aug '09 14:04
    Moves 10 - 15 all look pretty suspect for me, and some of the moves after too. What was the reasoning behind the weird looking 10...Qd7 instead of more natural moves like 10...Nc6 or 10...Nbd7? Playing simple moves like 10...Nbd7, 11...Qc7 and 12...Rac8 is likely to give you a decent position, although I'm no expert on the Najdorf.
  15. Subscriber no1marauder
    Humble and Kind
    11 Aug '09 14:39 / 1 edit
    10 Bf3 looks odd to me, but the databases have it played almost a hundred times including by Bruzon against Anand at Leon 2006. Anand and the vast majority of other Najdorfers played Nbd7 and Qc7 in either order. That leads to the standard setup against the 6 Be2 Karpov line and prepares b5 if and when White plays a5.

    Rather unsurprisingly 10 ...... Qd7 was not played in any of these games; I too can't seem to fathom the reasoning behind it.