Beat 1.e4 with the Dragon - Part 4



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Dear Readers of Modern Chess Magazine,

In this issue, we continue with our analysis concerning the extremely exciting Dragon variation in Sicilian defence. This time, we are going to deal with some rare continuations that White can choose on move six. The fact that these lines are not so popular doesn't make them less dangerous. As you will see, sometimes such lines are extremely aggressive and one should be very precise when facing them. In previous articles, White was developing his light-squared bishop mainly on "e2" or "c2". In the present article, I am going to bring to your attention some alternative ways of developing the bishop. From Black's point of view, we are going to concentrate  mainly on the most precise move orders which allow us to avoid possible dangers and overtake the initiative.

As the reader perfectly knows, the main position of Dragon Variation arises after the moves: 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6

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In the present article, we will focus on White's attempts to prepare the e4-e5 pawn break. White has two moves which fit into this strategy - 6.f4 and 6.Bg5. We are going to examine them separately.

1) White plays 6.f4

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 This is the most direct way to play for the e4-e5 break. Despite the fact that Black can ignore White's threat by playing 6...Bg7, in the framework of the present material, I give preference to the solid 6...Nc6. The reason is that after 6...Bg7 the play becomes very sharp and one must know a number of forced variations in order to survive. 

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