Play the Neo-Seirawan System against King's Indian Defence
We are pleased to present another fascinating opening survey by GM Davorin Kuljasevic - Play the Neo-Seirawan System against King's Indian Defence.
The starting position of the repertoire arises after 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Nf3 0-0 6.Bd3
In the introduction to the database, the author writes, "At first, this seems like a mixup between the two different systems. Usually, we develop our bishop and knight either in the ''classical'' Be2-Nf3 or the ''Seirawan'' Bd3-Ne2 formation. By comparison, Bd3-Nf3 (which I decided to name the ''Neo-Seirawan'' variation) seems less principled because it allows Black to pin the knight with Bg4. However, things are not that simple for Black after this move, as we will see.
The first strong player to try this system was the ever-creative GM Daniil Dubov back in 2020. His opponent was no less than Magnus Carlsen, and Dubov scored a thematic win. This game caught the attention of other grandmasters, including Carlsen himself. The World Champion used 6.Bd3 in two blitz/rapid games, as well as Hikaru Nakamura.
In classical chess, it scored particularly well in the hands of grandmasters Dardha and Bernadskiy. So far, most Black players have been reacting in less than optimal ways to the Neo-Seirawan variation, which partly explains why White have been getting very good positions (and scoring over 65% on 2400+ level) with it.
The obvious advantage of developing the bishop to d3 instead of the more usual e2 is that it helps White control the key e4-square. Moreover, it helps White fight against Black's thematic f5-break if the centre gets blocked with ...e7-e5/d4-d5. The bishop is also placed well on d3 in the Benoni/Benko structures, should Black go for the ...c7-c5 instead. The obvious downside is that it allows the Bg4 pin, but this is not such a big issue as it might seem at first. The database is broken down into two parts:
1) Theoretical material in the first nine chapters; and
2) Seven typical central structures with lightly annotated key games."
The database consists of 9 theoretical chapters, 20 lightly annotated model games divided into 7 important pawn structures, 20 interactive test positions, a Memory Booster, and a Video Version (2.5h Running Time).